Activity Coordinating Committee’s Report

The 2023 Activity Chairman Coordinating Team comprises:

Chick Lowry

Mike Frey









Dennis Mierzwa 

ACC Report for March 2023

The Branch 8 Activity List has been updated and posted on the website. The ACC will update as needed in quarterly intervals during the year.

AMS training continues with post monthly Luncheon sessions. A new approach with “hands-on” training provided in small groups is set to commence following the March meeting. We will begin with 6 outdoor related activities chairmen. We will continue training sessions until ALL A/C’s (who currently do not use the system) have been exposed to the importance of the various features AMS provides. A copy of the training elements is included with this report.

We have two activities to present to the BEC this month. One is completely NEW, the Jigsaw Puzzle Exchange, and one is an existing one, MAHJONG, that was not previously promoted to the general membership, but has been listed on the Activity List for some time. Ron Rizzo is the chairman and he and the group who presently enjoy the game are interested is expanding the player membership. A copy of the puzzle activity is included and Ron will speak to his activity during the BEC meeting.

Our ACC Team has also addressed issues regarding the continuation of the Website’s events calendar as a question arose regarding the need to keep it current. It requires continuous updating for some activities and is not utilized by all A/C’s, making it frequently incorrect when changes are made locally by A/C’s and unreported. The Hotline publication also has difficulty when the calendar info is different from the information they receive from various A/C chairmen, as they also use it as an element in the newsletter.

Following some discussion, the ACC believes the calendar should remain in use as it requires minimum resources to keep current and see a need to demonstrate use and importance in the current A/C training processes.

There was a directive from the State Sir Administration suggesting we use a specific format letter regarding response to a COVID exposure event. Several notes passed between BEC members asking questions on how to handle issues of this nature. Is there a resolution to those questions that will allow the ACC to forward the appropriate protocol for handling to all A/C’s?

The current Branch 8 Activity Status is:

  • 58 Activities, 38 Co-Ed, including 3 Branch wide events and 2 Community Outreach efforts.
  • 10 Br8 activities are currently available to share with other Branches
  • There are 8 additional other Branch activities available for our membership

          And 2 that are shared at a State level with all branches, Fishing and Bowling

ACC Report for February 2023

The ACC Team continues to make corrections to the Activity Chair listing so the information posted on the Branch 8 website is as current as possible. Each ACC Team member has been given a number of activities from the list to provide assistance to the chairperson in managing the activity if they request help.

An up-dated list was sent to each activity chair for their review with a request that they report back with corrections or changes in responsibilities. Those responses have already produced corrections to the document. More may be coming. A corrected A/C listing will be posted on the website upon completion. The list will be up-dated quarterly moving forward.

Mike Frey has taken on the responsibilities for cross checking the Branch Activity Management System (AMS) to assure it matches the current activity status. Each ACC team member will learn to perform this action as needed. This will correct the Branch record keeping problems we have been experiencing. Efforts will continue to train the activity chairs in making changes to the AMS data as they occur. Where the chair is not able to navigate the system the ACC team will assist with changes if the chair notifies his ACC team contact of the need.

The team is planning to continue with the after monthly luncheon discussions and training opportunities. The next session will be in March. We hope to see activity chairs who have not been able to attend previous training opportunities in attendance as well as others who can share their experiences of successes and needs in the management of their activities. The intent of the meetings is to make the operation of each activity as easy as possible for the chairs and assistants.

Mike has revised the ACC Team position description to up-date it to match the current required task responsibilities as a team member for future recruitment purposes. Upon approval from the BEC, it will be posted in the appropriate website location.

The team has adopted a suggestion made by David Bushnell to enhance the security of communications between activity and branch members in general of using the BCC addressing process for email communications. A Constant Contact message was sent to Branch 8 members suggesting this process be utilized. The ACC Team is now using the process to help avoid email scammers ability to hack personal information.

There have been a couple of suggestions to add activities to our extensive list. The Square Dancing Activity suggested at last month’s luncheon did not receive much traction and has been put in hold status to see if it finds a following.

Another ‘New’ activity has been suggested for Sirs Giving Back. The activity is associated with the CC Food Bank where Sirs are helping with the food box distribution operation in addition to the current activity we now support. It will be handled as a subset of the current operations rather than an entirely new activity.  As additional activities develop, The BEC will advise as to how they will be listed in our activity portfolio.

Announcements for February 2023 luncheon

Sirs Giving Back – Tom DiGrande has expanded his Food Bank Services to include monthly Food Bank Box Distribution. He put out an invite to add Sir help in performing this service to the community. He successfully filled the needed manpower to perform this service on February 21st.  He will require more assistance as future opportunities are scheduled.

The next regularly scheduled Food Bank volunteer activity is on Wednesday, 3/8 from 1 to 3 pm. That activity will include a tour of the facility starting at 12:30, if you have not viewed the completed facility; this is an excellent opportunity to see how efficiently the Food Bank provides outstanding service to the community.

Don’t forget to donate to the food barrels provided at each of our luncheons.

Details and sign up information is available on your lunch tables or in the SIR Hotline Newsletter.

Thanks for your continuing support of the growing Community Outreach – SIR Giving Back program & activities.

 If you have the time to give please contact Tom or Phil to sign up to help.

Tom  or Phil

Ladies Day Luncheon – June10th – it’s time to get your reservations planned for the Western themed June LDL. The sign up info will be posted on the website and in the Hotline soon, so watch for it.

It’s time to get it on your calendars.

Questions: Contact Buck Chieshire for answers.

ACC Report for January 2023

The ACC team has been busy putting the after luncheon Activity Chair meeting where Dan Weller will review once again the importance of using the AMS program to manage their activities. Mike has the meeting room and AV equipment set to enhance AMS knowledge. The agenda includes an AMS training session followed by open discussion as to how the ACC team can assist them with their programs.

The team is also reviewing the ACC member’s job description for presentation to candidates for addition to the committee. We have a couple of possibilities we plan to talk to. Mike is reviewing the document and will make recommendations for changes/additions at a future BEC meeting.

Ken has worked up the details for expanding the shared activity list with Bob Lucido and Chick will revise the Activity listing for BEC approval and posting on the Branch 8 website. The BEC will forward our approved activity list to the State organization.

We have 7 activities ready to share opportunities with other Branches:

  • Astronomy or Science On-line
  • Internet Games
  • Heads Up walkers
  • Pickle ball
  • Rubber Bridge
  • Sir’s at the Opera
  • Woodpeckers

Branch 171 – LA Morinda will share

  • Stamp and Coin
  • Historical Adventures

Branch 146 – Pleasant Hill will share

  • Cycling
  • Explore and Eat
  • Men’s Hearts
  • Theater

Continuing as shared activities are Fishing – Area Wide and the State Bowling activity

A new approved Activity list will be posted on the Branch 8 website with links to all shared activities.

Luncheon Announcements for January 9th

$UMS in Retirement: $UMS in Retirement will again join Branch 128’s (San Ramon) Investment Group Zoom meeting on Wed Jan. 25 at 1:30 PM.  The presenter will be Prof. Fred Fuld of SIR Branch 19.  He will discuss leading future industries including lists of companies (and their charts) that are representative of these. Fred retired from the financial services industry where he worked for over 30 years, working as an investment advisor, market maker at the Pacific Stock Exchange, and vice president of an investment management company.

Community Outreach-SIR Giving Back:  Will continue to be scheduled to volunteer at the Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano the 2nd Wednesday of the month for the 2023 year. 15 members needed.

Our next Food Bank activity is on this Wednesday, 1/11- 1 to 3pm.

On Wednesday, 3/8/2023 – we have scheduled a tour of the Concord Food Bank facility, prior to our activity.

Signup sheets are on your tables or contact Tom DiGrande or Phil Scimonelli.

The Community Outreach program will be expanding to other opportunities this year, including Food Bank distribution events and “soup kitchen “ participation.

We want to invite and encourage all spouses to participate in our activities!!

Donations of a can, bag or box of food for our barrels at the monthly luncheons, would be appreciated.

Giving back doesn’t require inordinate commitments of time or talent, you can do what you want, when you can, and still reap the rewards of Volunteering.


Tom and Phil

Writing Your Life Story:  WYLS kept meeting through COVID via Zoom. This year we’ve been meeting in person. Join our monthly lunch meetings; write a fun memory to share and save it so your grandkids will know who you were.

Call Tom Hodgson 925-818-1533

Duplicate Bridge (4th Friday)  We will start our New Year Duplicate Bridge on 1/27/23 at Round Table Pizza in Pleasant Hill.  Save the date.  Further news in January. Thanks, Bud

Ladies Day Luncheon:  The June Spring luncheon will have a western theme. So have your boots, jeans and hats ready for good country music and dancing. Served with great food, wine and prizes.

Contact Buck Cheshire – Chairman, Ladies Day luncheon

Updated 03/21/23 MLF