For many years, the Walton County Snowbirds have sponsored a community of writers, some of whom are experienced and others who have taken up the pen for the first time, forming an eclectic mix of writers from different backgrounds who have a shared interest and a desire to help one another.
This season’s program began with the task of composing a personal memoir followed by a period of creative challenges: short stories and additional memoirs, plus a piece of researched nonfiction.
Under the leadership of Carole Zoller and Debra Wynn, the current season has 10 writers who meet weekly for about three hours. Completing the program requires a lot of work, but Max Kirschke of Milford, Michigan, enjoys every moment of it. “The prompts,” he said, “bring a level of freedom I hadn’t expected.” After a reflective pause, he added, “What really helps is that by having someone else read my work aloud, my mistakes stick out.” He went on to say the memoir section triggers forgotten memories.
Another member, Murray Waldman, a former teacher and business owner whose home is in Toronto, Ontario, agrees with Kirschke. “If the reader stumbles over my words, I know I made a mistake." He added he finds the memoirs are a little more difficult because “my memory bank is overdrawn.” Both agree the presence of a number of former teachers among the members adds another level of help to the experience.
Meanwhile, over at the Golf Garden, Karen Benson began her day at on the last day of January with a hole-in-one on the first hole, and then won the closest to the marker on the second hole with her drive. Not to be outdone, Annamae O’Brien sank a hole-in-one on the fourth hole and then won the closest to the pin contest on the sixth. Having two hole-in-ones in the same league on the same day may be a first at the Golf Garden. If not, it is certainly a rarity and worth a tip of the hat to two fine golfers.
Those who wish to participate in the Walton County Snowbirds annual blood drive may do so between the hours of 8:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. Feb. 13 at Faith Assembly Hall, 306 South Geronimo Street in Miramar Beach.
Featured events of the final general meeting of the season include the election of officers for the 2019/2020 season and this year’s only scheduled appearance of the 27-member Snowbird Singers. It happens on Feb. 20 at the Santa Rosa Community Church beginning at 10 a.m.
Tom Mahar writes for the Walton County Snowbirds. Reach him at firstname.lastname@example.org.