Newsletter of the
SILICON VALLEY COUNCIL OF THE BLIND
A Chapter of the California Council of the Blind
EDITOR: Susan Glass, email@example.com
COPY EDITOR: Beverly Clifford, firstname.lastname@example.org
ADDRESS: P.O. Box 493, Mountain View, CA 94042
DEADLINE: for the October, 2018 issue: noon, September 21
VOLUNTEERS: Naomi Grubb, email@example.com
MEMBERSHIP: Mike Keithley, firstname.lastname@example.org
LEGISLATION: Mike Keithley, email@example.com
Legislative Hotlines, current issues for blind persons:
CALIFORNIA CONNECTION: 800-221-6359, after 5 PM and weekends
WASHINGTON CONNECTION: 800-424-8666, 3-9 PM and weekends
DISCLAIMER: This publication contains announcements from the Silicon Valley
Council of the Blind and is also a forum for opinions relating to blindness
issues. Signed articles reflect the views, and research, of their authors.
STATUS: SVCB is a 501(c)3 non-profit, tax-exempt organization under the
California Council of the Blind.
CHANGES OF ADDRESS: Contact Mike Keithley, firstname.lastname@example.org.
MEETING LOCATION: SVCB's monthly meetings are held in the community room of
the Monte Vista Terrace Apts. at 1101 Grant Road, Mountain View.
Meetings run 9:30 AM to 1 PM the third Saturday of the month and are open
to all. Monte Vista Terrace is one block from the intersection of Grant
Road and El Camino Real and is accessible by bus #22.
IN THIS ISSUE
* President's Message
* Membership Corner
* Fund-Raising Report
* Goodies Chair Goes Walk-About
* Snack Shack
* Event Calendar
by Susan Glass
It's hard to believe that we've crossed into the final month of summer. Our
days of late are cool and smoky, and my heart goes out to the many
firefighters battling in what promises to be the worst fire season on
record. Let's send positive energy and prayers out to them, and to their
families, and to the many Californians whose lives have been torn by fire.
If you weren't able to attend SVCB's August 18 picnic, you missed a fun (if
small and quiet) gathering. Mike gives you most of the details in his
"Membership Corner," although he forgot to mention Noel Runyan's
vibrating nerf rifle and target, which afforded us a rousing,
calorie-burning good time following our munching and chatting. You're a
great teacher, Noel. Please bring us more sports. I'm game for more target
practice, and more of Rob Turner's Audible Darts, too. I join Mike in
thanking Naomi and her wonderful volunteers, Vic and Bev for shopping and
readying tables and coordinating details, and their son-in-law Cody for his
magic at the barbecue.
In the August edition of In Touch, you read about our Northern Californian
Regional CCB Gathering, to be held on Saturday, September 29 at the San
Francisco LightHouse for the Blind. You also read an announcement about
this event in the most recent California Connection. Several northern
California chapter presidents have now held two planning meetings, and I am
able to share some updates with you. What follows is our tentative agenda.
I'd like to thank Frank Welte, whose notes I drew from extensively here.
The meeting will begin at 10 AM on September 29 in the Multi-Purpose Room
of the San Francisco LightHouse. We'll start with an icebreaker activity
such as inviting each participant to share something about himself or
herself that most people in the group would be surprised to learn. This
activity will be followed by a keynote presentation from CCB President Judy
Wilkinson, and/or CCB CEO Paul Shane, about the CCB vision, mission, and
the Major Gifts Ramp Up Campaign. The presentation will not exceed one
Next, we'll invite representatives from each chapter to share what they
perceive as their chapter's successes and challenges. Some of us will
scribe or take notes so that we can determine what challenges and strengths
our chapters have in common.
Lunch comes next, and our tentative plan is to order food from Subway.
We'll also be looking into procuring morning refreshments from Starbucks.
After lunch we'll break into four groups, and each group will be tasked
with coming up with a plan for local implementation of one of the four CCB
strategic initiatives: advocacy, serving people new to vision loss, serving
blind and vision impaired seniors, and transportation and technology.
Each plan should include ideas for cooperative activities by chapters in
the region. We should also look for ways to involve more young people in
Our meeting will adjourn at 3 PM. A number of you have already expressed
interest in attending, and I'm delighted. It can be difficult for all of us
to attend the annual CCB convention. Local regional gatherings such as the
one that we're convening on September 29 will allow more of us to
participate actively in CCB. Active participation will ensure that it is a
more effective member-driven, inclusive democracy.
Gabe Griffith and I are charged with registering attendees for the regional
gathering. The registration fee, which also assures you a lunch, is $10. If
you plan to attend, please bring your $10 to our September 15 meeting, or
mail a check to P.O. Box 493, Mountain View, CA 94042. Please write
"CCB Regional Gathering" on your check's memo line.
There are several transportation options for commuting to and from the
LightHouse. You can take CalTrain to San Francisco, and then a bus or cab
to the LightHouse. Or you can catch BART, which will drop you at a stop
directly across from the LightHouse. If enough members are attending, we
might consider chipping in together for a Lyft ride, or for a limo. As I
learn about more specific commute information, I will make it available in
our September phone tree and through our mailing list. So, please come
represent SVCB on September 29.
by Mike Keithley
This year our August picnic was a small, quiet affair, with 33 people
attending. But there were some nice raffle prizes: I got a Starbucks card
with its "Starbucks" in braille. And someone got a pair of
accessible walkie-talkies"pretty nice! (I should know, I contributed
them.) And the Yerba Buena picnic site, which I found to be very pleasant,
was right next to a wedding!
Many thanks to Victor and the volunteers Naomi garnered for us. Everybody
had a good time, and the hamburger and hot dog I ate were especially good.
"And they would have been better if you'd given me some!"
Perhaps, King, but that experiment had to wait, sorry!
I got to wondering how old SVCB newsletters described picnics, but I was
dismayed to find that there are no newsletters before 1997. Back then
picnics were more potluck affairs, and were the basis for many of the
recipes published in the 2007 SVCB cookbook.
We've heard that Roger Petersen hasn't been feeling well. Episodes of
floating blood clots, which were very serious 10 years ago, have
reappeared. But he told me the other day that things are calming down, only
now he has more pills to take.
Be sure to contact President Susan Glass to sign up for the regional
chapter meeting on September 29. See above in this newsletter for more
information, including an agenda. This is your chance to meet people in
other Bay Area CCB chapters, especially from the East Bay.
Let's wish happy September birthdays to Mike Keithley and Donald Reelfs.
"And don't forget me! I love singing Happy Birthday to myself."
King, you were saying that in the June column; how many time have we got to
do this. "Always!"
by Michelle McGrew
Thanks to all who got tickets for our raffle featuring donated prizes at
our August picnic! Prizes included a $25 Starbucks gift card, various
electronic devices, various picnic-related items, and a pair of tickets for
Tabard Theatre's production of "Another Roll of the Dice."
Congratulations to our winners: Mike, John V., Suzanne, Kathy H., Irene,
Sam, and volunteers Mary and Trina! We raised $158!
Save the dates and spread the word! Please join us at our next fund-raising
event at Marie Callender's (751 East El Camino Real, Sunnyvale, CA 94087)
any time Monday, October 22 through Tuesday, October 23, 2018 (11 AM-8 PM)
for a meal, dessert or snack, or even to purchase a pie to take home!
Please call 408-245-3710 to make reservations if you have a party of 6 or
more. Present one of our fund-raising event flyers to your server, and
Marie Callender's will donate 20% of each purchase (excluding alcohol, tax,
and tip) to SVCB's technology grant program! We'll have flyers at the
September and October meetings, or you can download and print the required
flyer by visiting www.svcb.cc (should
be posted by early September). Marie Callender's will not have extra
copies, and we will not receive credit for your purchases if your party
does not have a flyer.
At our September meeting, we're having an auction! Please stay tuned to the
Phone Tree to learn what items are up for bid!
Dawn Wilcox will be baking Almond Cookies for our September Cookies of the
Month fundraiser, to benefit our tech grant. Each bag of cookies will sell
for $1. If you would like to volunteer to bake cookies for this fundraiser,
please contact me by calling 888-652-5333 (leave a message to be forwarded
to me, or look me up on our Membership List to call me directly), or send
email to email@example.com. Let me know if you have a preferred month.
I am now taking orders for next year's large print/braille calendar
featuring artwork by blind and visually impaired people of all ages. I have
ordered 55 calendars, and expect them to arrive in time for the September
meeting. Remember, these are great to share with others! This year, they
will cost $10 each (sorry, prices went up, so we need to charge a little
more). To reserve yours, please contact me as listed above.
We are still selling our various snack items throughout the summer. For $1
each, you may select from the following options: bags of Welch's Fruit
Snacks (2.2-oz bags of chewy fruit-flavored candies), Kirkland Nut Bars
(contains a sprinkle of salt and a little chocolate), or as part of our
Summertime Snack Sale, nut mix with cranberries or with chocolate. To order
in advance, please contact me as listed above.
See you at the September meeting!
GOODIES CHAIR GOES WALK-ABOUT
by Bev Clifford
Yeah, you read the title correctly: At the end of September I'll be going
a-roaming all over the country with my husband Vic for 9 weeks, to see new
places and familiar faces, and to eat loads of amazing goodies all the way
from the Pacific to the Atlantic and back again. But that doesn't mean that
I will be shirking my goodyish duties by forgetting y'all and how hungry
you are, especially come the third Saturday of each month. Two early birds
have already made sure that you will have delicious snacks for the January
and June 2019 SVCB meetings, but as always, we need to fill in all the
other monthly slots. We're an easy-to-please bunch, and we're willing to
try just about anything you come up with, sweet or savory. But FYI: I
suggest four or five dozen of something, and if those somethings happen to
be sweet, do add a bit of fruit for those who are avoiding sugar. Or you
could surprise us with a savory breakfast casserole of some sort: Go for
To volunteer to bring snacks to one of our 2019 meetings, and to assure
that you get the month you prefer, you can call our SVCB phone number and
leave me a message at 1-888-652-5333, drop me an email at goodies%svbc_cc,
or look me up in our SVCB Membership List and contact me directly.
(Caution: DO NOT call me directly starting in October, as there will be no
one available to answer my home phone"unless there's an invisible
gremlin in my house that I don't know about.) Thanks in advance for your
Submitted by Suzanne Smith
This recipe comes from Cowpasture Cooking, a cookbook put out by First
State Bank of Texas.
1-1/2 cups boiling water
2 small packages or 1 large package strawberry or strawberry banana Jello
1 cup sour cream
1 package (16-ounce) frozen strawberries, thawed
1 small can crushed pineapple, drained
Peanuts (optional garnish)
Add boiling water to Jello and dissolve. Add strawberries and pineapple.
Pour half of mixture in buttered dish and chill until firm. Spread sour
cream over firm mixture and let set. Add rest of mixture and chill until
firm. May sprinkle with chopped peanuts if desired.
Optional: May slice in squares and serve on lettuce or plate as a delicious
salad. Goes well with any meat.
S'mores Pieces Cookies
Submitted by Suzanne Smith
This is the recipe for the cookies I brought to our SVCB picnic. I found
the recipe on a package of Hershey's S'mores Baking Pieces (Hershey's Milk
Chocolate Chips, Graham Cookie Pieces, and Mini Marshmallows) that I found
at Smart and Final.
3/4 cup (1-1/2 sticks) butter or margarine, softened
3/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1-3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1-3/4 cup (7-ounce package) Hershey's S'mores Baking Pieces, divided
Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
Beat butter and brown sugar in large bowl until well blended. Add egg and
vanilla; beat until thoroughly blended. Stir together flour, baking soda,
and salt. Gradually blend into butter mixture. Set aside 1/2 cup Baking
Pieces. Stir remaining pieces into cookie dough. Drop dough by heaping
teaspoon onto ungreased cookie sheet. Randomly push reserved baking pieces
into tops of unbaked cookies. Bake 8-10 minutes or until set. Cool 1 minute
before removing from cookie sheet; cool completely on wire rack. Makes
about 32 cookies.
Compiled by Mike Keithley
Medi-Cal benefits communications:
If you are applying for or are receiving Medi-Cal benefits, and are having
a problem receiving communications in braille or another alternative format
regarding your Medi-Cal application or benefits, Disability Rights
Advocates is interested in speaking to you about this issue. Please call
Sachiko Riddle at (510) 665-8644, or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org
Microsoft Disabilities Answer Desk Through Be My Eyes
We hope you've had the opportunity to use our Specialized Help feature and
call the Microsoft Disability Answer Desk. It is important to us at Be My
Eyes that the feature continues to be a helpful and efficient solution to
any technical issues.
Microsoft has been pleased to offer you this extended customer
support"so much that they are now expanding their opening hours. You
may now call the Microsoft Disability Answer Desk through Be My Eyes
Specialized Help 24/7! This means whenever you need technical assistance
with your Microsoft product or service, a Microsoft agent will be ready to
help you out.
EVENT CALENDAR: September to October 2018
Compiled by Mike Keithley
Tabard Theatre shows: To order tickets, call the Tabard box office at
408-679-2330 and speak to Marilyn Watts, or visit tabardtheatre.org. SVCB members
and Blind Center clients should use Discount Code BC27 when ordering.
Performances take place at The Tabard Theatre, 29 North San Pedro Street, San Jose.
Shows described by AudioVision: For all San Francisco productions (Golden
Gate and Orpheum Theatres): Tickets are generally on sale four weeks before
the production opens. To charge tickets and reserve receivers, call
888-746-1799 (SHN Theaters), or fax your order to 415-581-2121 and ask for
AudioVision tickets. If you have any questions, please email email@example.com.
The monthly "Let's Talk Low Vision" conferences from CCLVI can be
accessed as podcasts at www.airsla.org/cclvidd.asp.
Bay Area Association of Disabled Sailors: Departs every Sunday at noon from
Pier 40 in San Francisco. Call 415-281-0212 for information and
reservations, or visit www.baads.org.
Bay Area Outreach and Recreation Program (BORP): BORP believes that
everyone should have access to the unique challenges that outdoor
recreation provides, and makes every effort to accommodate each person's
needs, including providing transportation and volunteer support. For event
listings, call Lori Gray at 510-843-4398, or visit www.borp.org.
Sep 4, 5:30 to 7 PM: Breast Cancer Support Group, call-in: 605-715-4920;
ID: 2776167. For questions, call Lori Scharff at 516-887-1336, or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Sep 6, 7 to 9 PM: SVCB Board meeting. If you're not on the Board but wish
to attend this meeting, please contact President Susan Glass.
Sep 14 to Oct 7: ANOTHER ROLL OF THE DICE, Tabard Theatre (see notes).
Sep 14 and 15, 8 PM and 16 at 2 PM: NATIVE GARDEN, descriptions by the
Visual Voice, TheatreWorks MVCPA.
Sep 15, 9:30 AM to 1 PM: Monthly meeting. Announce Nominating Committee,
informally consider amendments for Constitution or Bylaws, begin planning
for Braille Literacy Month, and remind members to acquire prizes for
Sep 18, 5:30 to 7 PM: Let's Talk Low Vision, Traveling with Low Vision,
712-432-3447 with ID code 145330.
Sep 21, noon: October newsletter deadline.
Sep 22, 2 PM: PHANTOM OF THE OPERA, Orepheum Theatre, description by
AudioVision, see notes.
Sep 30, 1:30 to 3 PM: Ye Olde Towne Band free concert, Shoup Park, 400 University Avenue, Los Altos.
October: Employment of People with Disabilities Awareness Month.
Oct 2, 5:30 to 7 PM: Breast Cancer Support Group.
Oct 4, 7 to 9 PM: SVCB Board meeting.
Oct 15: Blind Americans Equality Day, formally White Cane Safety day.
Oct 16, 5:30 to 7 PM: Let's Talk Low Vision, Lighting and Eye Protection.
Oct 20, 9 AM to 1 PM: SVCB Membership Meeting: Formally consider
Constitution and Bylaws amendments.
Oct 23 through Nov 18: THE EMPORER'S CLUB, Tabard Theatre, see notes.
Oct 26, noon: November SVCB newsletter deadline. Distribute fall membership
list, publish slate of 2019 SVCB candidates.