General Meeting Minutes July 2019

Reported by Secretary Gayle Hudson

Meeting called to order by President Patti Shannon Hocker at Ricky’s Sports Theatre and Grill in San Leandro, CA at 7:33 pm.

33 members present.

Speaker: Josh Russo, President of Watermen’s Alliance which hosts the recreational urchin removal events. Josh gave us a detailed update on purple urchin removal and abalone restoration.


  • Peter Fisher, who was certified in 1966 by Jim Steele’s father and dove one time.  He recently took the course again with his daughter, who is going to Thailand.  He remarked how everything at Steele’s, even the Temescal Pool, is the same.
  • Tom Fisher, Peter’s brother, a firefighter for 40 years and a diver.  Tom is Interested in helping with the purple urchin removal.
  • Frank and Katie, certified in 1980. They are from Salinas and want to join us in Monterey.

Treasurer’s Report (Helga Mahlmann)

  • Club Assets: $6,347.11
  • Classes: $2,478.21
  • General Fund: $3,868.90

Entertainment (DL Popplewell)

  • August – Neil Benjamin, Cavern and Cave Diving
  • September – Elaine Berger – Aquatic Medicine
  • October – Alison Young, Cal Academy – Tidepooling Photography
  • November – Member’s Night

Help with Entertainment is always welcome – taking notes of the presentation, recommending speakers, back-up for Alan to do set up.  Any help is appreciated.

Membership/Meetup (Kat Smith)

  • 78 Regular, 10 Associate, eight Lifetime for a total of 96 members.
  • Meetup has 88 members.

Meetup is a private group for club members only. If you want to organize a dive, let Kat or an organizer know and you can be made a temporary organizer so you can set up a dive.

Training (Dennis Hocker)

  • AOW begins September 4 but it may be held earlier.  Let Dennis know by the August meeting if you want to sign up for the class.  Prepayment is required to Dennis.  Students must have 3-5 club dives prior to joining the class.
  • Rescue Diver class this Fall if there is enough interest (CPR and O2 provider required).

If there is interest in any other class subjects, let Dennis know. For more information on training contact Dennis Hocker at (510) 792-5606, or Neil Benjamin at (510) 673-0073

Newsletter (Alan Throop)

Alan said that Arnie in Hawaii wrote a good article on technical diving and equipment for the newsletter.

Contact Alan at if you are not receiving the newsletter. Input due by the 20th of the month. Content is always welcome. Dive reports and photos encouraged.

Web (Kari Klaboe)

The website is a little behind as Kari was in Chuuk, but she is getting it caught up and thanked Jenn for getting the newsletter sent out in her absence. Content can be sent to

Special Committee

Holiday Party is December 7 at La Cabana.  The planning will begin probably around August.  The party starts at 6:30 pm and runs to about 11 pm.  A committee will form soon and volunteers will be needed to help out.

New Business

  • Alan announced that underwater photographer and author Bruce Watkins has moved to the big island of Hawaii and will no longer be writing for California Diving News.
  • Angela Boltinghouse went on a dive in the Dominican Republic, where she dropped her  iPhone 6S plus in a pool without its protective case.  She offered her waterproof case to anyone who can use it; it’s good to 60’ and her new phone no longer fits the case.
  • Devin brought dive swag from the scuba show and offered the items to members.

Old Business


Past Dives

  • June 29 Club Dive: Kat reported on the Club Dive at Breakwater.  She said the visibility was horrible (Larry the Elder called it diarrhea).  Divers buddy dived close together but it was difficult to see anyone.  DL got cold and somehow Kat found herself away from the wall and speculates it was Middle Reef.  Elaine Berger added that she partnered with with Alan Staneck and said she had a great dive with 25’ vis on the wall.   Same dive!  As she was swimming out she forgot to connect her dry suit hose, but got it connected when Kat handed her the hose.  Kat said once they got down to depth the vis was better.
  • Chuuk Dive Trip Report – June 20 to July 6: Jono reported on the Chuuk dive trip aboard Odyssey Adventures dive trip where he had 50 dives in 13 days; the deepest was 180’.  The wrecks are not in great shape and he noticed a difference from his last trip three years ago.  They all had a great experience with the crew.  Jono nominated Jeff for the Bone Award.  Sid got geared up and jumped over.  Jeff was under the boat and motioned to Jeff that he had forgot his pony bottle.  Jeff got out, got the bottle, plus one for Jono who was also entering the water, and later on the dive Jeff dove without his own pony bottle.
    • Bill Briscoe was impressed with the history of the wrecks and the life on the surface of the wrecks.
    • Dave Chervin said the boat is incredible and the best dive boat experience ever.  There’s a lot of life on reefs and they did a wall dive with sharks.  He said he never saw so many beer and sake bottles in his life, which may be the reason the boats had so many urinals!
    • During the trip, Dennis celebrated 500 dives just within Truk Lagoon alone.  Divers had the opportunity to dive 34 sites.

Good Buddy Award

  • Kat nominated Mike who took new diver Claire to South Monastery on the day of the June club dive and she came back!  The vis there was 40-50 feet and they has a close encounter with a big wolf eel.  Claire had two excellent dives there. Mike said it was so busy at Breakwater they couldn’t find parking, so they went to Monastery.
  • Neil was nominated as Odyssey Divemaster Ken had an extruded o-ring at 60’.  Neil gave him air, turned the regulator off, put the o-ring back in place and the dive continued
  • Mike Barrett was awarded the Good Buddy Award.

Bone Nominations

  • Kat nominated Elaine for not attaching her dry suit hose.
  • Jono nominated Kat for lack of navigation skills.
  • Jono, Sid, Jeff were nominated for forgetting their pony bottles on their deep dive.
  • Jeff Tindall received the Bone Award.

Upcoming Activity and Dives


  • July 20: MBARI 2019 Open House, noon to 5pm at Moss Landing. POC is Angela B.
  • July 27-28: Purple Urchin Removal, 8am, Noyo Beach at Fort Bragg. POC is DL.
  • August 24-25: Salt Point Club Dive weekend. Reservations now open.  POC is Debbie Driggers.
  • August Club Dive:  Gayle reported that the Golf Ball Cleanup, scheduled for August 17 must be rescheduled because that is Monterey Auto Week.  Pebble Beach will work with our club to provide a shuttle to Stillwater Cove in Carmel (parking is limited), among other considerations.  The dive will be rescheduled after ‘wedding season,’ as Pebble Beach would prefer we not photobomb wedding photos taken along the beach.  Pebble Beach has hired a commercial diver to remove golf balls and is the first golf course to address golf ball cleanups.
  • September 8 -10: VDM Channel Islands dive. Contact Alan Throop or Bill Delameter.
  • October 12: Club Dive is a Full Moon (almost) dive at Breakwater, 4:30 pm.  POC is DL.
  • November 9-11: Club Dive Veterans Day Weekend, three days of diving.  POC is Kat Smith.
  • December 20-January 4: 16th Annual Cozumel Extravaganza.   Patti will arrange hotels, contact her for space.  Dive with Dive Paradise. $86 per room per night dbl occupancy or $82 for single in a room. Ten members have signed up and more are interested.


May 8-18: Maumere – Komodo – Bima, Indonesia aboard the Explorer Adventure Blue Manta. One space is left.  POC is Dennis Hocker.


June 26-July 10: Bonaire with Dennis.

Upcoming Meetings

  • July 18 – BOD

Meeting Adjourned at 9:05 pm.