Unit Happenings

Laurie and Sam Page, Debbie Muise, Sharon Walker, Linda Rodrick and Paul Williford.

Unit 3S

Brenda Newitter

On December 12, Unit 3S joined together with Unit 8-A for a wonderful Holiday Dinner/Dance in the Vistas Dining Room of the SaddleBrooke Club House. Everyone dressed in their holiday best and enjoyed an evening of great food, fun dancing and socializing with neighbors. As everyone enjoyed dancing to the music played by the 18-piece Big Band, Santa flew by in the sky and called out “Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!”

Unit 3S and 8A holiday party

Marie Lopez

This year SaddleBrooke Units 3S and 8A decided to combine their holiday celebrations. What a wonderful idea! They planned a scrumptious meal at the Vistas Dining Room located at the SaddleBrooke One Clubhouse with dining music provided by The Rhythm Gang Big Band of Tucson followed by dancing music.

The Vistas Dining Room was packed. Everyone from Units 3S and 8A were dressed in their finest for this combined holiday party.

The Rhythm Gang, directed by Ed Sands, provided light dinner music while the happy neighbors dined and socialized. Such a festive sounding buzz in the air. But that didn’t stop the couples that came to dance. They were up and dancing to the dinner music and really enjoying themselves.

Dancing music was started off with Teddy the Toad and boy did The Rhythm Gang sound great. They were in the northeast corner near the dance floor and the acoustics were perfect. They sounded fantastic. Dancers were up and at it right from the start.

Just a few of the songs The Rhythm Gang Big Band of Tucson played were Fancy Pants, Flatbush and Witchcraft. Luke Howell sang The Tender Trap as the happy guests continued to enjoy their meals and the dancers danced. More and more dancers joined in on the fun until the floor was covered with happy feet and smiling faces. They danced to My Girl, The Christmas Song and Cheek to Cheek sung by Erin Recuparo. Luke belted out It’s Not Unusual and then this brother and sister musical team sang What Will Be Will Be and Dear Heart.

So much more music, more laughter and a great evening of food and friendship. Lots of good wishes were wished for this festive season as The Rhythm Gang Big Band of Tucson wound up the evening with many more songs like New York, New York, Almost Like Being in Love and even I Can’t Stop Loving You.

As the saying goes, a great time was had by all!

Unit 4 supports shopping program

Carol Arritola and Marly Milks, Unit 4 representatives

For the second year the generous people of SaddleBrooke One Unit 4 have supported Golder Ranch Fire District’s “Shop with a Fire Fighter.” This is the third year for the program which includes residents of Golder Ranch Fire District and approved families from the Tri-Valley area including Oracle, San Manuel and Mammoth. The goal is to ensure that each family participating in the program has a happy holiday season. The children and their families met the fire fighters at the Oro Valley Target on December 13 to do their Christmas shopping. Prior to 2017, Unit 4 supported “Adopt a Child,” sponsored by the Catalina Community Center. Last year we contributed $1,480 and this year over 25% of our homeowners gave $1,945 to help the fire fighters meet their goals. We want to thank all of our homeowners for their generosity.

Unit 27

What a magnificent evening we had for our chili supper at the tennis patio. It was lucky we didn’t plan for the previous day which was windy, rainy and at some locations, hail. For us the weather was calm and clear and a great evening was had by all, sampling the various chili dishes and the delicious desserts.

Our first luncheon of the fall season was at It’s Greek to Me. It was a great place for lunch and close to home. It wasn’t really a birthday luncheon as no one had a birthday in November so we did without the dessert, not that we were hungry after the generous portions on the lunch menu.

On December 11 Unit 12, paired with Unit 4, had their annual Christmas dinner and dance. Everyone looked fine in their evening clothes. After a delicious meal, we enjoyed the music of the ’50s and ’60s. This prompted quite a few dancers onto the dance floor. The evening closed with wishes for a Merry Christmas to everyone.

Two guys and a gal in their holiday gear just says it all!

Unit 17 holiday bash

Mary Gelinas

What a great evening at the Unit 17 Christmas party hosted by Gary and Alison Luster on Monday, December 10. Many 17ers met at Betsy Lowry’s at 4:30 p.m. that day, wearing holiday hats and antlers and ringing bells, to warm up for caroling in the neighborhood. Anne Movalson lent her expertise in leading the group songs. Then about 60 people in fun holiday gear enjoyed all the great food and conversation. The buffet table was loaded with an amazing variety of hors d’oeuvres and don’t forget the desserts! We were so glad that new neighbors Steve and Kathy Horrigan came to enjoy the event and meet everyone.

Now we are gearing up for the 2019 activities: Arlene DesJardins has already lined up Sunday, April 14 for our annual Spring Fling. Before then, though, we’ll be having potlucks hosted by Sue Haugh and Faith Fromson and a couple more events may be in the works.

Unit 21 neighbors enjoy the soup course at the Gann residence on Ocotillo Canyon Drive, with neighborhood Christmas lights in the background. Eight soups and stews were prepared by volunteer unit chefs. Pretty darn tasty!

Unit 21 enjoys holiday traditions

Jim Hagedon

What, exactly, is a holiday tradition? In our unit, it’s activities that have been going on for many years. Both our “Light Up the Night” and “Holiday Dinner Dance” events definitely meet that criteria.

We got the festivities started on December 1, as residents combined an evening viewing a great light show, mingled with great food. The Christmas light show was provided by Unit residents and the food was provided at three homes. Golf carts were the preferred mode of transportation.

According to Event Chair Sue Colby, the evening kicked off with appetizers at the Colby home on Desert Sun Drive, followed by soups and stews at the Gann home on Ocotillo Canyon. The final stop was for desserts at the Mollenkopf home on Desert Sun.

Sue said the evening was a big success. “My estimate is that we had well over 100 neighbors participating,” according to Sue. “I want to particularly thank those that opened their homes and the 18 folks who provided all of the food. I don’t think anyone went away hungry!”

Our Unit folks once again loosened their belts for our annual dinner dance on December third. According to Event Chair Lea Stocks, 95 people attended the dinner in the Vistas Dining Room. An excellent meal was provided by Chef Dave and the SaddleBrooke One food service staff.

The Dinner menu consisted of Chateaubriand with mushroom duxelles and bordelaise or seared salmon with tomato, fennel and saffron sauce. For dessert, Bailey’s Pot de Creme with peppermint whipped cream. Following dinner an opportunity to work off a few calories on the dance floor was ably assisted by the musical duo of Kaci and Ken.

“It was a memorable evening, but it didn’t happen without a lot of work,” said Lea. “I want to thank my committee for their able assistance.” The volunteers included Nancy Hanna, Bob and Brian Stocks, Dee Zellinger, Nancy Wilson, Sue and Jim Hagedon, Midge Mollenkopf, Donna Bernard, John Martin and Jon Broers.

Will the tradition continue to 2019 and beyond? Based on the comments of those participating, it’s a pretty safe bet that it will!

Eileen and Jeff Depka with Santa in their beautifully decorated house; Ron Talbot, photographer.

Unit 27 activities

Sue Case

Eileen and Jeff Depka hosted a Halloween-themed Snack and Chat on October 27, having encouraged attendees to dress in costume. To set the appropriate mood, Eileen and Jeff had extravagantly decorated their house as well as their front and back yards in Halloween style. Many of our residents dressed for the occasion, which made it fun for everyone that attended.

Fira Stout arranged for a Dine Around the evening of November 6 at The Persian Room on Thorneydale. Perhaps because November 6 was Election Day evening, only a small number of residents attended. Those that did go said they really enjoyed the food, but issued a warning that the dishes served there are big!

Vicki Strief once again organized the Unit 27 Ladies Holiday Luncheon, which was held at Vivace Restaurant on December 7. As always, the service was impeccable and the food excellent. Vicki and her assistants added to the already decorated private room where the party was held, to make it even more festive and Vicki, with financial help from resident Don Stoebner, continued her tradition of offering tequila sunrises in honor of former Unit 27 resident, Don’s wife, June, who passed away a few years ago. As guests left the restaurant, they were treated to elegantly wrapped cookies, also from Vicki. Thank you, Vicki (and Don)!

In addition to Dine Arounds, Fira has also arranged monthly Bocce Ball games for unit residents, which have been lots of fun for those attending, though Fira notes that they may cancel if it is snowing. Check emails for times and dates.

The annual combined units Holiday Party was held at the MountainView Ballroom on December 11. Many thanks go to Jan Talbot for arranging the event, in conjunction from the representatives of the other units, which were 32, 36 and 46. Unit 27’s Phil Doyle served as DJ, and played a mix of Christmas and dance music. The ballroom dancers hardly sat down and those that didn’t dance as much enjoyed the camaraderie and conversation.

Jeff and Eileen Depka outdid their extravagant Halloween decorations in their magnificent installation of Christmas and holiday decorations. Actually, the word “decorations” does not begin to describe the lights affixed to every possible location and the many villages and other scenes that were set up in the house and outside. Luckily for us, the Depkas graciously invited the entire unit to an open house on December 16, so that everyone was able to see the fruits of their labor of love. Speaking of fruits, not only did Eileen and Jeff open their house, they provided groaning boards full of fruit, vegetable and cheese trays as well as meats, desserts and assorted drinks. It goes without saying that those attending were very grateful.

At the last unit meeting, our long time Unit Representative, Larry Zanatta, announced that he would be handing over the gavel to Jeff Depka, who clearly has a lot of energy! Larry has been a great representative for many years and we thank his wife, Betty, for sharing him with us. Best wishes to you both and also to Jeff and Eileen.

Some of Santa’s helpers with their wrapping complete!

Unit 48 news – Adopt-A-Child

Terry Hechter and Madelaine Salas

Since 2009, Unit 48 has taken to its heart the children on Indian Reservations in San Carlos and San Manuel by adopting them for the holidays. Organized by SaddleBrooke Community Outreach, each child is able to make a wish list of wanted toys and clothes which are purchased, wrapped and delivered by Santa’s helpers.

While Unit 48 was not able to have a fundraiser this year for this project, the residents of Unit 48 were very generous through direct donations. We were able to make Christmas brighter for 40 children! Ten teams of shoppers purchased clothes and toys on the children’s wish list plus specialized stocking stuffers for each child. The West Ballroom at the MountainView Clubhouse was full of Christmas cheer and music as about 20 people wrapped and bagged all the presents. What a pile of presents!

The bags of gifts were loaded into the “sleighs” and delivered to the SBCO project coordinators for delivery to the good little boys and girls who might not otherwise have gifts to open on Christmas.

Big thank yous go to Unit 48 residents for their kind donations and to Joni Dawson and her team of elves for such a well thought-out and organized effort.

The wrapping party; photo by Karen Stevenson

Unit 49 Adopt-A-Family

Lan Bedard

Unit 49 residents have reached a new record in donating $8,360 to Adopt-A-Family; a 23% increase over last year. With this generous donation, Unit 49 is able to adopt 27 families, a total of 50 adults and 82 children.

To help with this event, Unit 49 has 50 volunteers formed 18 teams of shoppers spending countless hours buying gifts for 132 people. On December 11, 28 volunteers gathered at the MountainView Ballroom West to wrap all the gifts purchased and were delivered by 11 volunteers.

The residents of Unit 49 live up to the true meaning of “the Spirit of Giving” during this holiday season. Sharing the goodness of their hearts with others by providing these gifts to the adopted families, they give them hope and great joy.

Many thanks go to the Unit 49 social committee and to all Unit 49 volunteers who have given a hand to the Adopt-A-Family program.

Photo by Jeannine Grippo

Unit 49 Dining Divas

Shawne Cryderman

Santa arrived early for the Dining Divas of Unit 49. 29 ladies enjoyed a delicious luncheon in Tucson at Vivace’s Italian Restaurant.

The food was delicious and the service spectacular. A fun gift exchange took place and the ladies in the picture patiently waited to open their gift until photographer Jeannine Grippo took the photo.

This monthly event is open to all the ladies of Unit 49 and is organized and orchestrated by Denise Anthony, Gail Thom and Carole Wenz. It was a wonderful way to spend time with neighbors and share stories about holiday traditions – past and present!