News from Northern Indiana Unit 154

Editor: Kim Grant, Fort Wayne IN

(260) 740-7348       Unit website:



May 19, 20 & 21, 2017

Fort Wayne Bridge Center
4618 East State Blvd., Suite 101
Fort Wayne, IN  46815

Web page with full schedule

Tournament Chair: Kim Grant  
(260) 740-7348

Partners:  Gary Chaney
(419) 438-2175       

♣   SOUTH BEND    ♣ 

August 4, 5, & 6, 2017

at the Kroc Center in South Bend

        Tournament ChairJohn Hamilton             

Tournament Chair:  Kim Grant  


This year, 2017, the clubs in Angola, Fort Wayne, Warsaw, South Bend/Mishawaka, Long Beach, Michigan City, Valparaiso, Chesterton, Portage, and Gary will be electing a total of six members to the Unit Board. All materials, forms and instructions are available on the website ( right now.

Be a candidate!  You can nominate yourself. It’s easy: fill out the form in 15 seconds and email it in.

Be a voter!  Register at your favorite club by May 15 and you are ready to vote in the June elections. You registered last year or the year before?  GREAT!!! You don’t have to register again.


Cathy Mason of Portage is their oldest player. She celebrated her 98th birthday on March 24. She still is very active as a participant, and although age is taking its toll physically, her mind remains as sharp as a tack.


On January 5th, Doris Shafer celebrated her 90th Birthday. To honor her, the club presented Dorie with a lovely bouquet of red roses and a cake.

Her picture will be included on the 90+ wall along with our heartiest congratulations. As you can tell from this picture, she looked especially beautiful on her celebratory day, not really an unusual occurrence! 


There is a Thursday morning Newcomer Game (0-20 points, 9 to 11:30) at the club that has been running since July and has been drawing 3-4 tables each week. One feature of the game is that at each table there is a mentor to help answer questions. Tricia Killeen has been teaching most of these beginners, and the volunteer mentors Dennis David, Tom Hallum, Tom Hebron, and Joan Tobler have been instrumental in the success of this program. 

Also added to their schedule is a Friday afternoon ACBL-sanctioned 149er game that meets from 2-5 pm under Elaine DeLaney’s supervision. The attendance is growing each week. These new games are available for beginners and/or players who have been away from the game for a while.


It was with great regret that South Bend received news that John Nichols, who has been our SBBC webmaster for the past six-plus years, is leaving us to pursue tournament directing. He has been invaluable to their club and we absolutely could not have done it without him. We thank him for his service and wish him the best in his future endeavors.

One of their newest members, Ben Paulson, has consented to take over John’s duties. Ben is a PhD candidate at Notre Dame in biology, and, while he hasn’t had a lot of experience with website design, he is willing to jump in and learn what’s necessary to keep our website going. We thank him and offer him whatever help we can give to keep him happy in his new job!  Jo Ann Steigmeyer will continue to be the liaison for the Website.


The fourth annual Jim Farner Day, held on January 5, 2017 in South Bend, found them with hardy players who showed up in spite of nasty weather. The winners were Elaine DeLaney and Dick Hastings. Their names have been inscribed on the special wall plaque given to the club by Dr. Jim’s family to celebrate his birthday. Congratulations, Elaine & Dick!!

Special Note:  Dick wanted his name on the plaque to be engraved "Doc" Hastings. He not only trained under Jim but did rounds with him as a practicing physician.

70% + GAMES

Joe Chin, Highland & Don Cohen, Oak Park, IL:  76.39%  1/3

Jim Feinstein, South Bend & Sara Marcus, Granger:  71.48%  1/10

Lou Nimnicht, Crown Point & Jim O'Connell, Valparaiso:  72.69%  1/31

Chuck & Marcy Tomes, Valparaiso:  71.11%  2/22

David Hoevel & Joseph Sowder, Fort Wayne: 74.70%   3/2

Marian David, South Bend & Sara Marcus, Granger:  70.84%  3/29

JUNIOR MASTER:  Betty Brewe, Michiana Shores; Richard Brewe, Michiana Shores; Lynn Lantow, Hamilton

CLUB MASTER:  Gordon Ewing, Fort Wayne; Kathie Fritz, Michigan City; Marty Martin, Niles; June Salmon, Long Beach

REGIONAL MASTER:  Patricia Laing, South Bend; Jim Lively, Highland; Joseph Sowder, Fort Wayne; Carol Teshima, Trail Creek

NABC MASTER:  Carol Miller, Valparaiso; Barbara J Stroud, Chesterton

ADV NABC MASTER:  Carol Watters, Columbia City

BRONZE LIFE MASTER:  Patricia Skelton, Kokomo


James Angell, Munster

Jim Angell of Munster, with perseverance and proficiency, has attained a long-awaited goal — Gold Life Master! What a glorious delight we take in congratulating him on this phenomenal event — 2500 masterpoints that took a half century to compile in fractions of a point — sometimes more and sometimes less.

Jim writes, "FINALLY!!! Reaching Gold Life Master was my goal since 1967, when Tom Hallum introduced me to duplicate bridge and taught me a myriad of conventions. We played for years, when a win earned 0.37 masterpoints and a game costs $2.00.

This is a compilation of remarks made by several of Jim's partners — "I met Jim about ten years ago when he was winning a lot of sessions with other partners and showed up in a kilt as least once. As an occasional partner I noticed his competitiveness and aggressiveness both on offense and defense. Never a dull moment! He maintains his joy and passion for the game still." 

"Jim is even-tempered, always complimentary, never negative, understanding and helpful. This recognition that he has striven for and attained is richly deserved." 

"Because of him our team does well all the time."

"Jim, it's good to hear of your recent 'scaling of the heights' within the bridge world. Who would have believed that, even with eyesight not the best, hearing that needs help and weak knees, that your age didn't stop you from strolling across the accomplished 'Gold Life Master' designation."

"Damn the torpedoes! Batten down the hatches! Full speed ahead! Captain Jim Angell is in the clubhouse looking for all the slams in the day's game. He has never met a slam that he didn't bid — whether they are makeable or not. And he manages to pull them out."


Patricia Killeen, Mishawaka

We’ve been fortunate to celebrate so many of Tricia’s achievements throughout the years and are happy to add another one. In March she became our sixth Sapphire Life Master earning more than 3500 points (along with the number of colored points required). Of course, we know she is not done and will be adding higher rankings in the years to come.

We all know Tricia as our Club Manager but she does so much more like keeping track of our members’ activities, making sure they receive get well cards when ill, teaching classes, running games for new players, and, the big chore of scheduling all the games offered at the club. We thank her for her caring and congratulate her on her latest accomplishment.


Louis Nimnicht, Crown Point        

Lou Nimnicht of Crown Point has reached yet another significant achievement as he progresses upward through the ranks of the bridge hierarchy. Sapphire Life Master requires 3500 masterpoints (with at least 700 silver, red, gold or platinum, of which at least 350 must be gold or platinum).

These are excerpts from some of Lou's partners:

"We all know the bridge skills that Lou brings to the table every day. We also understand his competitive nature and understanding of the game. Regarding the personal side of Lou, there have been occasions when I needed someone to help me reason through a number of difficult situations. Lou listened, offered a number of ideas, and helped me find solutions and peace of mind."

"I have been a bridge partner with Lou for over thirty years. At the table he has been an adroit, personable, aggressive and knowledgeable partner. Away from the table he is caring, curious, humorous and friendly. I have been fortunate to have been his partner and blessed to have been his friend."

"Lou's advancement in bridge over the past few years has been rather phenomenal. Even when competing against some of the national elite players, Lou has distinguished himself as a bridge tactician, strategist and analyst. As a regular partner, I am frequently amazed at both his deductive and intuitive prowess. Lou is helpful in regularly offering constructive tips to beginning players."



Lois Edelstein of Schererville passed away on January 31. She was a frequent player at our Monday game in Highland. She also played Rubber Bridge in the area. Her son remarked that, for his mom, bridge, by far, was her most joyous social activity, and that she loved bridge as much as she did her family.

Wayne Hiser, her regular partner adds: "When I moved into the area seven years ago, I started playing in the "Chicago group" in Merrillville, where Lois was a regular. She asked if I would like to try duplicate while her usual partner was in Florida. We had a good run. We didn't play many conventions, but generally understood each other's bids. She knew how to play the cards! And loved it!

SARAH ARVESEN - January 3, 1923 - November 27, 2016

The South Bend Club reports with great sadness that Sarah Arvesen passed away this past November. They were so pleased that they were able to celebrate her 90th birthday in 2013 and to see her picture on the 90+ wall. She leaves behind two daughters, Christine and Jean, 6 grandchildren, and 6 great-grandchildren.

Sarah was busy throughout her life working as a registered dietician and retired as Chief Clinical Dietician at Memorial Hospital in 1988. She traveled, spent winters in the Florida Keys, and did what she loved best - playing Bridge. General knowledge in the Bridge Club “Don’t double Sarah!  If she bids it, she’s got it!”  We’d like the opportunity to double her one more time, but then we’ll have to see what the angels can do!  We miss you, Sarah.


South Bend is pleased to offer Dee Stevenson’s description of his hike through the Appalachians. This was quite an achievement not only for him but for his pet shihtzus. Let Dee tell you!

The southern terminus of the trail is atop Springer Mountain in Northern Georgia and continues for 2190 miles to the northern terminus at the summit of Mount Kahtadin in Baxter State Park in the middle of Maine. The trail is administered by the Appalachian Trail Conservancy in conjunction with the National Park Service and maintained by the NPS and volunteers with area hiking clubs throughout the length of the trail. Over 98% of the trail is on public lands.

I started hiking the trail in 1985, always hiking in a northeastern direction. I skipped around in my section hikes depending on the time of year. There are two areas where dogs are not allowed -- Smokey Mountain National Park and Baxter State Park in Maine -- so I did these parts when I did not have a dog.

Four different dogs hiked the trail. The dogs in the picture hiked approximately 700 miles. Another dog of the same breed hiked over 1000 miles. This dog saved my life on a mountain in New Hampshire by refusing to go any further up a mountain. I would have been the fourth person to die of hypothermia on that mountain without her. In fact, hypothermia was setting in by the time we reached safety.

Good dogs are the very best companions you could have on the trail. Besides the company, they serve many useful purposes. You get no backtalk, sass or complaining. Just give them food, water, rest and a place to sleep. They keep you warm when it is cold, keep the mice away from food, and give you warning if animals or people are around.

There are many other stories to tell and people I encountered on the trail. One more thing: Our sons hiked a good portion of the trail with me, sometimes both of them  and most of the time just our younger son.