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Annual Holiday Party: The Shenandoah Region, Porsche Club of America's annual holiday party took place on Sunday, December 6 at Historic Michie Tavern near Monticello. A record 83 members and guests arrived for cocktails and a tour of the tavern museum at 6 PM and a buffet dinner (including colonial fried chicken and Virginia country ham with raisin sauce accompanied by an assortment of old-fashioned side dishes and peach cobbler a la mode for those who saved room for dessert). Dinner was followed by the autocross awards presentation and distribution of door prizes. The autocross winners for 2009 are Rick Ebinger (class I01), Jeffrey Elmore (class P05), Mike Kilmer (class P03), Cristina McCann (Autocrosser of the Year and Ladies class winner), and Emmett Richardson (overall points winner and class P04 winner).

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Herb's New Car: Herb Distefano just traded in his silver 2005 Carrera for a new chick magnet, a white 2008 Carrera S Cab at Euroclassics! His white 964 Cab is for sale (since sold). Click to enlarge the small photo on the right.

Phil and Susie Audibert's Fabulous Fourth Fall Foliage Tour began at 10 AM on November 1 at the CDOC facility a half mile south of the Gordonsville traffic circle, off of Rt. 231. CDOC let us tour their racer's goody store. Also, Paul Overstreet showed us around his new shop, Overstreet European Motors, which is located within the CDOC building. Since the club anniversary party was rained out this year, we had an anniversary cake and coffee, too. Note the photo in the frosting showing a car on last year's Fall Foliage Tour.

Phil and Susie led the tour in their gray Boxster because it was raining and their 356 "Green Bean" is only marginally able to run the wipers and headlights at the same time. The winding roads were scenic, and the sun actually came out for the second half of the drive. We ended up at Graves Mountain Lodge for an "all you can eat" buffet of southern cooking, followed by apple pie and ice cream for those able to eat more.

Click to enlarge the photos on this page. Also see more photos by Bill Sanders.

Click to enlarge photos  

The new Panamera was on display at Euroclassics Porsche for the October 20 social/business dinner meeting in Richmond. It has four real seats for adults, four doors so you can easily get into the back seats, a big trunk, and a very luxurious interior (with lots of buttons to control the high-tech goodies like PASM, air suspension, etc.). Afterward we had dinner in a private dining room at Carrabba's Italian Grill.

Eighth Annual Euroclasssics Day at Virginia International Raceway: The eighth annual Euclassics Day on October 12 at VIR (Virginia International Raceway) provided another driver's ed opportunity and a great introduction to high-performance driving for first timers. Qualified instructors were available to give free driving instruction.

Photos by Emmett Richardson.

Porsches and Pastrami: On Sunday, October 4 Gary Hagar hosted our final Porsches & Pastrami for 2009. The owners of ten Porsches and one BMW arrived at Durty Nelly's Pub for lunch. Most followed on a brisk driving tour, led by Dan Graff and his son Jakob, through the scenic rolling hills of eastern Albemarle, western Louisa, and southern Orange counties and ending at the Civil War Museum at the Exchange Hotel in Gordonsville. Here we were given a group tour of the museum and adjacent kitchen, both part of a Civil War hospital complex.

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Autocross: The sixth and final autocross of the 2009 season took place at the Augusta Government Center in Verona on Sunday, September 20. The course was bidirectional, and particpants ran each way three times. The photo shows Don Mattingley driving his 2008 Cayman. Here are the results by time.

Basil and Spec Boxsters: On Sunday, September 13 the Shenandoah and Blue Ridge regions met for lunch at the Basil Mediterranean Bistro followed by a tour of Werkstatt in Charlottesville. Raif Antar served almost 70 of us another outstanding meal at his restaurant on The Corner near UVa at his expense. Afterward, we went to Werkstatt to meet with Kenny Shreves, Nicole Shreves, and Scott Leopold. They showed us around their shop and explained Boxster Spec Racing, a newly adopted class that has been added to PCA, NASA, and SCCA club racing. We saw some of the Boxsters they are preparing for sale and lease.   More photos...

August Fun in Verona: Another round of the Shenandoah Region's Autocross series happened on August 23rd. Coincidentally, we had 23 racers also, so kind of weird. We had some visitors new to the club and also had some first time racers give it a shot. It was good to see the new blood giving it a try and having a ball. It is nice to see people having fun no matter what speed they run and where they place. New blood reminds us why we got into this stuff in the first place.

We built up a unique track that allowed two cars on at once. We wrapped up everyone's 6 runs by 2:40 PM, which was really nice. There were no major straights, an 8 cone slalom, and 61 seconds pulled down FTD. The course was technical and not one I had come up with before. Most all enjoyed it but were tired at the end of the day. I actually fell apart on my last run and basically slid, tank slapped, and basically lost it for about 70 yards before I gave up and called it a day. I explained what one run too many looked like. We had a tight group in the top five, with Emmett Richardson coming back up to the top again. I got a drive in that car during this event and it is amazing how well a 997 runs and handles. Nice car, Emmett, and thanks.

Three strong ladies made that group fun to watch, with Cristina McCann taking top honors, while slipping by her co-driver, Paul Sponseller, by 0.4 seconds. I think Paul caught her in the fun runs, but too late to count. Good win Cristina. We had a strong showing of the Miatas, and lots of sliding and car control. Stephen Garstang showed yet again that your car doesn't have to have an S to run fast and high in the ranking.

I once again couldn't catch the FTD of Gary Krichbaum. The one second threshold seems to be my Everest. I have upgrades for the car, but not till next season, so second will have to be good enough for now. Lots of good drivers for the event, and it is always fun to see the people who push and continue to get better.

Next month is our last Autocross of the season, and then we have the VIR day with Euroclassics for Columbus Day. For the September 20th autocross, I have an idea that will be like nothing we have done before in Staunton. I saw something 10 plus years ago at the Virginia Nationals, and I think I can pull it off at our local track. If done right, it will be something you will never forget, and hopefully enjoy. I usually change things up, but this will be a stretch. Come check it out.

Thanks for all the help today; good run, club.     ... Rick Ebinger

Porsches and Pastrami: Despite the gloomy weather forecast for Sunday, August 2, the afternoon turned out sunny for this month's Porsches and Pastrami. Nine Porsches and about twice as many members showed up for lunch served by Gary Hagar, owner of Durty Nelly's Pub and Wayside Deli in Charlottesville, and a driving tour through Albemarle, Fluvanna, and Louisa counties led by Jeffrey Elmore and Dan Graff. The tour ended at a country store and ice cream shop. "It's not just the cars, it's the food."

Garage Mahal Tour and Autocross: On Sunday, July 19, Phyllis and Weldon Scrogham hosted a "pit stop" at their famous Garage Mahal in Waynesboro. Coffee and refreshments were served behind their house, and then Weldon and Cole opened the garage and showed us their amazing collection of Porsches in a garage that most of us can only dream of. Words cannot describe it; if you weren't there, you have to see the photos.

Afterward, Cole led us in his red 356 to the Augusta Government Center in Verona for another one of Rick and Erik's challenging (and fast) autocrosses. To encourage more women to participate in this autocross, Diane Clark the owner of Merle Norman Le'Spa in Fishersville donated a $25 gift certificate to be used toward spa services. This "incentive" was awarded to the fastest lady driving a Porsche, Pam Ebinger.

More autocross photos...

Here are the final autocross results by time and by class.

Rick Ebinger's autocross report:

We were not sure how many people would come since the commonwealth games were going on that day and our SCCA friends were down in Danville. We were pleasantly surprised with 23 entries. The day had a very interesting course, with three places you could take a 901 transmission and max second and one big run that was deep third. It was a very fast course. We had our usual group, with some first-time runners. My favorites were the two slowest guys of the day, both driving Golfs and having the times of their lives. One was a TDI and the other was a very stock 87 model. I helped instruct one of Carl Severtsen's runs, and he did very well. I was distracted though because this car had the rare option of shoulder belts only. I looked for a lap belt but found none. It was a very interesting (not good) feeling as the stock suspension worked beyond its limits and wiggled around the track.

We had three good lady drivers for the day, with Sherry Westfall, Christina McCann, and Pam Ebinger running hard and moving up the ladder. Pam worked out a win and was very happy with her second attempt ever at autocrossing.

Erik Huggins and Jeffrey Elmore were pushing their rides to the max and went in very deep in the big straightaway. Both had big slides at high speed but pulled off great saves and made the rest of their runs. Great car control, guys.

Gary Krichbaum ran a great day again with his set-up Camaro. Everyone loves to watch him push that big American iron around. I was close with the 914, but still need to do some more work on the car to make it better. Erik also ran the 914 twice and nailed down the third slot with only two runs.

Probably the highlight of the day for me was watching Pam run our new yellow Boxster S (photo above). She pushed hard and used the car the way it was designed to run. 7000 RPMs and heavy brakes were used to navigate the course. It is a lot of car. I drove it a few times and had a hard time working the computer adjustments. Cole Scrogham warned me about the Boxster's understeer and he was right. I didn't like the computer attacking me with traction control, and it was tricky to get the right settings to match my driving style. I settled for traction control on for launch and then immediately off after the clutch was engaged and I was rolling. I had the suspension and sport buttons pushed the entire time, so no problem there. I won't launch without traction control on, and I won't run a course with it on. The fourth fastest time posted of the day was my first run with the car, and it had more time in it. Unfortunately, I could not get it, and after the third try I was done. If I raced the car in the future seriously, I think I'd stagger the tread and put race compound on the front only. More than likely I won't run the car again, or infrequently at best. The 914 is still my favorite, but the Boxster has found a new home and we are glad to have it. It is a very good ride right out of the box.

Thanks for all of the help. We have two more events for the year. See you next month.


Rumble at the Oak Tree: PCA Zone 2 sponsored a three-day club race and advanced DE on June 26–28 using the full course at the Virginia International Raceway (VIR). Shenandoah Region members "Mad Mel" Brannan, Jim Condon, David Israel, Erin Israel, and Emmett Richardson drove in the DE. Emmett served as a volunteer grid-tech inspector, Jim Condon and Sherry Westfall assisted with registration, Rick Ebinger was the Steward Assistant, and Erik Boody was the Scrutineer Assistant. Matt Einstein, Mark Francis, and Scott Leopold (shown in his Spec Boxster the photo on the left) drove in the races. Matt won has class and came in third overall against very strong competition in the enduro on Sunday. Congratulations, Matt!     More photos...

Richmond Porsche Meet (RPM): Shenandoah Region's thirteenth annual RPM took place on June 5, 6, and 7. The (rain free!) concours (results) was held just a few miles from the hotel at the beautiful river home of Howard & Leeanne Faunce.

More concours photos...

Autocross results by time and by class from Rick Ebinger

Autocross photos by Bill Sanders

First Settlers Region Driver Ed: The First Settlers Region ran a three-day DE event on May 22–24 using the full course at VIR. The weather was beautiful, and the event was sold out despite the recession. New Shenandoah member David Few showed up for his first DE with his "new" 2006 Boxster S (photo), and Sherry Westfall was signed off for a solo run in the blue group.

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Social/Business Dinner Meeting: On Tuesday, May 19, Johnny Johnson hosted our meeting at the downtown Charlottesville office of Pace Real Estate Associates. Johnny showed off his latest acquisition, a black 1974 Carrera Targa. Carter Elliot took advantage of the excellent weather to bring his black 1956 Speedster. Phyllis and Weldon Scrogham donated several door prizes, and President Bill Sanders spun a beer bottle to determine the winners. Raif Antar, owner of Basil Mediterranean Bistro, treated us to an outstanding dinner from his restaurant at no charge. Raif is building an amazing 935 K3, and he left a book of photos showing the progress in this project.

Click on any of the four photos below to enlarge it.

Autocross at Verona: Our second autocross came on a very busy Porsche weekend for us. We had the Valley tour the day before, and even though we dodged rain for that event, we did get a soaker Saturday night and it threatened all day Sunday. With heavy clouds and rain all around us again, we managed to stay dry in Verona. Some thought we would cancel due to the liquid stuff, but we never do. We might delay for lightning or heavy winds, but the show goes on. Some of my most memorable events were in conditions that were at best poor. I figure you might as well learn how to drive in the stuff, and it is a great equalizer for equipment and lets the talent shine. Needless to say, we didn't get wet on Sunday.

We did have a major mechanical failure with my 914. During the track set up, I popped a driveshaft in the CV area next to the transmission. This was the same mechanical failure that Bobby Smith had a few years back when I slipped by him for FTD at Southside. I guess I was due. Erik was able to finish up the track layout, and I ran home to pull some parts I needed to put the thing back together. It was raining less than five miles south of Verona when I rushed home, and Sunday was also a major speed-trap day on 81, so the trip seemed to take forever. I did get the new shaft in and was up and running in less than two hours. With more than double the HP the car's driveline was designed for, these shafts and the transmission are the weak link. I will wait to put the 600 HP shafts in until I get a 915 built transmission in the thing. Shafts are cheaper to replace. The car did well, and we continue to dial in the suspension.

We had 26 racers who took the challenge on a new design we had not run before. It was technical and didn't have a long straightaway, but I found myself slipping into third gear three times during my 56 second run. That tells me it was a faster course than normal. Ray Schumin and Mick Seal helped me with some of the course, and I think it was a winner. We also had some fire extinguishers donated to us from our local SCCA. We were due to replace ours and we appreciate their gift.

Many of our Porsche members came out and ran hard. Emmett Richardson pushed hard with some new rims, Howie Dunbrack moved to the upper part of the pack with his 944 Turbo, and Jeffery Elmore's Boxster always looks good running around the course. Caleb Briggs moved up from last place, with his experience behind the wheel doubling from last month (he has been driving for a few months now) he was only a few spots behind his father. Watch out Ben. Howie, Erik, and I are still working on the top spot, but Gary once again slipped past us and with a little engine work, Mick Seal's Miata took top time with Ray at the helm. I was closer though, and as I relearn how to drive the car, I hope to lock this down by the end of the summer. There are decades of experience in the top six spots though, so 0.3 seconds doesn't sound like a lot, but it is.

Next month we run at Southside during the RPM weekend, and it looks like July will be a normal autocross on July 19th to tie into Phyllis and Weldon's event. Keep an eye open for more details. Enjoy your sun between the raindrops...

Rick Ebinger

Here are the results from the May 17 autocross by time and by class.

More photos by Emmett Richardson...

Shenandoah Valley Tour: On Saturday, May 16, Pam and Rick Ebinger led us on a driving tour of windy back roads in the Shenandoah Valley. Rick led the line of Porsches in a Baja Bug, and Pam herded the stragglers from her VW Cab. We stopped at the Taylor-Boody Organ Factory near Staunton, where Eric Boody showed us how they build mechanical tracker organs in German baroque style. They do everything themselves, from growing and cutting their own trees for the cases to melting metal ingots to roll and form the pipes. After leaving the organ factory, we drove to the Osceola Mill Country Inn in Steeles Tavern for a private lunch. The tour finished at the Ebinger's house, just across the road from a scenic waterfall.

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Peaks of Otter Tour: Deane Parker (orange shirt and matching special edition Boxster S) led a scenic driving tour of country roads and the Blue Ridge Parkway down to the Peaks of Otter on Saturday, April 18. We met at the Bank of America parking lot in Crozet at 8:30 AM and picked up an Alfa driver at Humpback Rocks. After a morning of driving and stopping at occasional overlooks, we had lunch at the Peaks of Otter restaurant with Blue Ridge Region members Gary and Donna Templeton plus Linda and Alec from Lexington.

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Porsches and Pastrami: Gary Hagar, owner of Durty Nelly's Pub and Wayside Deli in Charlottesville, hosted the second Porsches and Pastrami on a warm, sunny April 5. Then Sherry Westfall and Jim Condon led a short driving tour through southern Albemarle county and northern Nelson county. More photos...

Autocross—First Round goes to the "Other" cars: Our first event on April 4 went very well, with 19 racers and a good showing from our region. We had some regulars and some old friends with new cars. We even had a 4 cylinder 1965 Morgan that was fun to watch. It had a very low stance, and the plate was almost touching the ground. I commented on that to Erik, and he said it was even lower when I rode with the guy during the drive-thru. Not sure what he meant by that. Ben Briggs brought out a new car and a very new driver, his son. I was impressed how well he did since he had just started driving, and he has a good starter car. Good job, Caleb.

It was a fast course, with some technical tricks. I put in a few drift corners and the biggest straightaway I can muster at the site. The 914 ran well, and Erik almost caught me. (I hope he gets his car fixed soon!) Our old friend Gary Krichbaum came to play and brought a very nicely set up Camaro. Gary has always been a fan of those larger cars, and I raced with him for over ten years back in my Bug days. If he races the season, you will get a chance to see a very smooth and fast driver. Gary ended the day with FTD and put .69 seconds into my 914. I guess I have to find a second or two to get the top time. Maybe I should cut back on the sodas and gummy bears, or just design a tighter track. We'll have to see.

The next autocross is back at the Government center, and we have moved the date owing to some conflicts. We have shuffled the date to the 17th of May, and it is the same weekend as the cruise in the valley Pam and I are setting up. If you want to make this a weekend event, e-mail me and I will give you some good locations to stay and some stuff to do. The rally is done after lunch, but there are tons of things to see in the area. Make your calendars. Thanks to all of those who came, see you at the next one.     Rick

Emmett Richardson took this early-morning photo showing Rick setting up the cones.
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Here are the results by time and by class.

High-Performance Driving Clinic: Instead of going to the autocross, Paul Sponseller drove at the high-performance driving clinic run by the Potomac Region on the Jefferson Circuit at Summit Point. This driving clinic is an excellent preparation for autocross, driver ed, and accident avoidance on the street. In the morning sessions, participants learn how to brake hard and how to drive around obstacles, and they get to spin on the skid pad. This all-day clinic ends with instructed hot laps on the Jefferson Circuit, essentially a mini DE. This photo (click to enlarge) shows Paul with a big grin following the hot laps.

Shenandoah PCA Goodie Store Goes On-Line: The Shenandoah region has a new on-line Goodie Store with a huge selection of items for the enthusiast. The web store will allow our club to have items never before offered with our club logo. The items sold through the on-line store will still help support the club with a percentage of each sale. So when you're looking for Shenandoah Region Porsche Club gear, just go to the MART or LINKS page on our web site and click on the link [now obsolete].

The Club still plans to have some items for display at upcoming events, and grille badges will still be handled by the club owing to their uniqueness.

Ben Briggs

Porsches and Pastrami: A New Shenandoah PCA Event
On March 1, Gary Hagar, owner of Durty Nelly's Pub and Wayside Deli in Charlottesville, kicked off his first in a series of Porsches and Pastrami—a casual gathering of Porsche enthusiasts who have lunch together at Gary's place and then go out for a short driving tour or other Porsche-related activity afterward.

On a cold, dreary, and eventually snowy Sunday afternoon, approximately 13 Shenandoah members gathered around a cozy fire, ate some delicious pastrami, chicken BBQ, and other tasty deli selections, talked about cars and even other subjects, and dreamed of the sunny, warm days that lie ahead when we can exercise our Porsches. A big thank you goes out to Mike and Geoff Kilmer of Photoworks who donated a beautiful banner for Gary to display to advertise his event. Unfortunately, the tour scheduled for later in the afternoon had to be canceled because of the weather.

We all can look forward to more Porsches and Pastrami on the first Sunday of every month at 1:00 p.m. Come enjoy a great lunch and a fun afternoon of driving—or whatever Gary may have planned for us. Check the Heat Exchanger, the Shenandoah PCA web site, or the Shenandoah PCA forum for more details.

Great Turnout for Shenandoah's February Meeting: On Tuesday, February 17, we held our first social/business dinner meeting of 2009 at Shackleford's in Richmond. Twenty-eight people joined together to enjoy a good meal, reconnect with friends, learn about upcoming Porsche events, and be entertained by the tales of Alex Smith and Bob Duntley on the 11th Annual Texas 1000 road rally they participated in last fall. Coming to their first social meeting with us were new member Dan Ehrman, recently transferred member from First Settlers, Bruce Russell, and guests from First Settlers, David Wallace and Nancy Deane. My 10-year-old nephew and junior Porsche enthusiast, Andrew Stevens, escorted me to the dinner in my husband's absence.

Alex piloted his GT3 with friend Don Charles as navigator. They were so good they were only seconds off of the winning time! Alex persuaded fellow Shenandoah member Bob Duntley and his son to come along for the adventure through the scenic Texas Hill Country in Bob's 996 cabriolet. Bob's son took lots of wonderful photos, and Bob wowed us with a slide show of Porsches, Ferraris (including an Enzo and F40), Jaguars, Triumphs, an Alfa Romeo, Corvettes, a Mustang, and others. Along their journey of 1,000 miles in four days they were treated to luxurious accommodations, delicious meals, and sights you could only find in Texas. One of the major sponsors of the event, Porsche Cars of North America, even provided brand new Porsches for anyone unlucky enough to have a disabled vehicle that could not be repaired. In addition, there were mechanics on standby for any mechanical mishaps. Talk about service! Thanks, Alex and Bob, for sharing a driving experience that most of us can only dream about having.

Sherry Westfall

Tech Session at Werkstatt: Kenny Shreves at Werkstatt Charlottesville (1117 C East Market Street, Charlottesville, VA 22902 — phone 434.971.6700) led a "show and tell" tech session on Friday, February 13. Kenny is an expert race mechanic who does a lot of work for the famous "Flying Lizard" race team, and Werkstatt is now preparing a number of Boxsters for spec racing.

Kenny showed us what he looks for in a track tech inspection, and he demonstrated how you can flush brake fluid and check the thickness of the brake pads. About fifteen members arrived to talk, watch, and ask questions about getting ready for the upcoming driving/autocross/driver ed/club racing season.

Making a Difference in Tanzania, Africa: Tanzania is one of the poorest countries in the world, with 58% of the population living on less than $350 per year. As a result of my first-hand observation and experience of specific needs in Tanzania, Mel and I established Tanzania Health & Humanitarian Fund, an organization of volunteers passionate about making a difference in the lives of Tanzanian children and adults. The mission of Tanzania Health & Humanitarian Fund (TanzaniaHHF) is to provide specific medical, educational, and missional support to people in Tanzania through contributions, partnerships, and sponsorships.

Please see my illustrated article describing this effort and consider making a contribution.

Jeanette Brannan     

Brrrr!: Rick Ebinger's 914 on the morning of January 18, at the waterfall across the road from his house.

Annual Planning Meeting: New President Bill Sanders presided over the annual board meeting on January 11. Twenty-five members attended this meeting at the Jefferson-Madison Regional Library (Northside Branch) to plan the club's events for 2009. The tentative 2009 calendar shows both events organized by our region (lines with a pale blue background) and events of interest run by other organizations (lines with a gray background).

Jeanette and Mel Brannan requested club support for their charitable organization in Africa. They will write articles for the Heat Exchanger and the website to describe their efforts in more detail.

Rebecca Morgan and Mark Stubbs will not be able to continue beyond April as Membership Chair and Heat Exchanger Editors, so we will need to find replacements. Any volunteers? A big THANK YOU to both of them for work well done.

A trial run of the new Shenandoah PCA on-line forum (see the article below) was approved by the board.

Thanks to Gary Hagar and Dave Lasch for providing excellent munchies.

Shenandoah Region web forum: Members of a web forum can post emails on the web for others to read. A regional web forum should make it easier for small groups to organize and coordinate Porsche-related activities quickly without requiring a flurry of emails and phone calls among the participants.

The websites of many PCA regions host open forums that can be read by anyone. However, even large regions usually fail to maintain active discussion threads; and a "dead" forum makes a region look bad to nonmembers, like broken windows in an abandoned house. Also, electronic communication on a public forum may need heavy "moderation" to ban objectionable comments, flame wars, etc. To provide the benefits of a forum but avoid these problems, I created a "restricted" forum called Shenandoah PCA using Google Groups. You must become a member of this group to read or post messages; it is invisible to nonmembers.

If you would like to join the group, go to the LINKS page, click on "Shenandoah Region Forum," and then click on "Sign in and apply for membership," click on "create an account", and fill in the blanks. Google will send me an email with your request, which I will approve if you are a member the Shenandoah Region PCA. After you have become a group member, you can log in to read or post messages at any time by clicking on the "Shenandoah Region Forum" link.

Thanks to Jeffrey Elmore for suggesting the forum, which I hope will help our members get together for small impromptu events. If you have any questions or comments about the forum, send me an email at