Thank You Sports Commissions!
This is a labor of love for our wonderful volunteer sports commissioners! They spend countless hours organizing the events, recruiting athletes, preparing venues and tabulating results all so you, the athletes, can enjoy!
Archery takes us back in time then fast forwards to the present.
John Loades had been an elk and deer hunter when at age 50, some friends asked him to join them shooting bows. He took to the sport immediately. “It was quieter.” he remembers. “And, a good excuse to get outside and read a book”. Shooting in the wild is about waiting. Often birds would land on his bow, and once a bevy of quail walked over him to get to water.
This led to archery on a course and eventually, with the goal of having a hobby they could do together, he bought his wife, Pauline, a bow as her retirement gift. How romantic! Pauline remarks “After 40 years of marriage, there isn’t a whole lot to talk about short of dinner menu choices, so this fit the bill and gave us something we could share.”
Pauline had had some experience shooting in high school and college. Remember those days when archery was offered as a women’s P.E. sport?
Pauline and John find archery to be an ideal sport for this age group and for couples. You can do it on your own or find a group to shoot with. It’s great exercise. It is not as ruggedly physical, yet it builds stamina and requires mental acuity. “I find it is the ideal stress reliever.” says John and wife Pauline agrees. “The steps needed to set up your shot require concentration and focus – all your troubles have to melt away if you are to make the shot.”
Memories of backyard picnics – it’s not that game anymore!
Stan Bischof was very much in his brain in college. He had tried intramural and recreational badminton in high school and liked it, but was truly focused on his studies, which left little time for sports.
After college, he moved to Sonoma County and took up local regional competitions. “Badminton is half physical and half mental,” he says. “And the studious side of me liked that it wasn’t a brute force sport, but one that required thought.”
After many years of play and coaching local high school teams, Stan can still beat the 18-year-olds. “They’ve got the physicality, but I am mentally more acute.” And because of that, Stan believes that badminton is the ideal senior sport. “Unlike other sports, you can really enjoy the game as a beginner and have success your first time out.”
Look for a great tournament in June: singles, doubles, mixed doubles then the championship matches at the end, so that all can enjoy.
Dan Rei, Sports Commissioner
Hey, these shoes are that goofy!
As is often the case, Bowling Sports Commissioner, Dan Rei, gave up his lifelong passions for bowling to raise a family and now just finds himself back in those goofy shoes! “I began league play at the age of 12 and carried that love of the sport throughout my life.” Says Dan
“It is a sport that is available to the beginner who just comes to have a good time as well as the experienced bowler.” explain Rei. “The competition at the Sonoma Wine Country Games offers the seasoned bowler a measuring stick of their skills in the spirit of friendly competition, as well as gives the beginner or social bowler to be a part of a fun, social activity that never gets boring.”
Tournament Director, Curtis Woods, retired pro bowler and Manager at Double Decker Lanes, coordinates all the pro and league tournaments that come to play in Sonoma County. “It’s a given that he will offer a top notch tournament for our athletes.“ adds Rei.
So whether you’ve tried bowling or not, play regularly or not, give this great sport that is so accessible to everyone a try at the 2014 Sonoma Wine Country Games!
BOWLING – Dan Rei Sports Commissioner and Curtis Woods Tournament Director
CYCLING – Amy Crabb and Charles Lindner
GOLF – John Theilade
Whiffing the Ball!
An avid tennis player, Arlene first encountered pickleball while on vacation in Palm Desert almost 20 years ago. “We were staying at a campsite and there was quite a bit of action going on, so I decided to give it a try. I whiffed a lot of balls in the beginning – shorter racquet than I was used to – but in the end, I really enjoyed the smaller court and the camaraderie of the group.” remembers Arlene.
Upon returning to Sonoma County and having giving up tennis, she was pleased to encounter a group three years ago playing in Windsor. “I was so happy that I could get back into my game and took a lot of joy from being active again. The smaller court size attracts or lot of past racquet sports players,” she has noticed. “And the only thing that hard to learn about pickleball, is the scoring.”
Look for training venues at www.winecountrygames.com and if new to the sport, with practice you will be playing proficiently pretty quickly!
Dale Hartman – Sports Commissioner
Ken Kerst – Tournament Director
Teri Simpson didn’t play sports as a young girl. In fact, team sports weren’t even offered in her school. Married with kids as a soccer mom, she sat on the sidelines and watched her kids develop their physical skills but also came to know the value that the team experience had on their lives. Teri started playing soccer at age 51 after some other soccer moms invited her to try it out. More than a dozen years later, she not only plays in the Sonoma County Women’s Soccer League, but has competed in the World Masters Games in Canada, Italy and Australia. A poster child for senior sports, Simpson is in her 4th year as the commissioner of soccer.
TABLE TENNIS: John Wong Sports Commissioner
TRACK & FIELD:
Casual or “By the Rules” Volleyball is a fun game to play
At 6’3”, volleyball was an easy fit for Sports Commissioner, Jerry Miller, in high school. “It was as sport I could play without the intensity of basketball, but equally competitive” remembers Jerry. He played as middle blocker in the school intramural leagues and took the sport into his adult life by joining a social group that did many outdoors activities together, including volleyball. That’s where he met his wife who shares his passion for staying fit.
“I’m very much a fan of 50+ athlete tournaments and when I learned about the Games three years ago, I contacted the office” he says. He has been the Sonoma Wine Country Games Sports Commissioner for the three years since the sport was added. Not only is he involved with volleyball, but has been an umpire for men’s softball for the Games as well.
Volleyball can be played casually or “by the rules” and Jerry believes that the social aspect of the game is very much a part of the appeal. “It’s played at a slower pace, than other team sports such as basketball or soccer, so there is time for personal exchange during the game.” he notices. “I really think that is the “fun” that makes this w\sports so appealing to those who take it up.”
“This year, we are focusing on developing our co-ed teams, so plan to stay on men and women to compete in another tournament as well!”
Denis Belletto – Team Coordinater email him at email@example.com if you would like to learn more about joining a team