General Meeting Minutes September 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 7:34 pm.

Patti asked for a moment of silence to honor the lives lost on the M/V Conception on September 2.

65 Members present

Entertainment: Elaine Berger – Aquatic Medicine


  • Joseph and Alma: Joseph was certified November 2018 in Cozumel and was invited to the meeting by Oliver and Jim to consider diving in Monterey.
  • Eric: Certified 25 years ago; mostly free dives but just loves being in the water.

Treasurer’s Report (Helga Mahlmann)

  • Club Assets: $6,044.61
  • Classes: $2,778.21
  • General Fund: $3,266.40
  • Larry the Elder submitted a receipt for software for the Entertainment computer.

Entertainment (DL Popplewell)

  • October:  Alison Young, Cal Academy – Citizen Scientists/Tide Pool Photography
  • November:  Members Night

For Members Night: give thumb drive with photos/videos to DL or Laurie in advance of the November 7 meeting.  Length not to exceed five minutes. Help with Entertainment is always welcome, including taking notes of the presentation, recommending speakers, back up for Alan to do set up.

Membership/Meetup (Kat Smith)

10 Associate; 8 Life; and 77 Regular for a total of 95 members.

Training (Dennis Hocker)

Dennis and Neil are holding Advanced Open Water (AOW) class with the following schedule:  September 12 and 17 for academics; 21 and 28 for diving; and the addition of September 24, if needed, for academics.  Three students have paid their fees and there are still openings. The cost for ATDC members is $150.00, due by the September 5 General meeting.  The perquisite is three club dives.  Students must have three to five club dives prior to joining the class.

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

Newsletter (Kari Klaboe for Alan Throop)

The newsletter went out via Mail Chimp.  Contact Alan at if you are not receiving the newsletter. Content is always welcome and input is due by the 20th of the month. Dive reports and photos are encouraged.

Web (Kari Klaboe)

The website up to date and current newsletter posted. Content can be sent to

Special Committee

Holiday Party: Kari Klaboe is helping Alan for this event, which will begin at 6:30pm on December 7 at La Cabana.  Kari passed around a signup sheet for volunteers. This is a great party – raffle (to benefit the Pacific Grove Hyperbaric Chamber), dancing, great food, games, Santa!  Patti encouraged everyone to sign up as soon as possible so food can be planned.

Old Business

  • Meeting time:  the Board considered member input last month and have decided not to change the 7:30pm start time of the meeting.  In order to finish by 9pm, so everyone can leave early enough and/or enjoy more social time and allow Ricky’s to begin cleanup, speakers will be asked to limit their presentations to 35-40 minutes.  Also, when talking about past dives, members are asked to keep their summaries to about one minute-ish.

New Business


  • It’s never too soon to serve as a club officer.   Please come to a BOD meeting and learn more.
  • Member Roster: An opt-in choice will be added to the online club application so members can decide where or not they want their contact information shared.  Devin Martinez suggested members share contact information during the social hour.  Patti said Board member contact information is available on the website and Meetup has email addresses. Discussion ensued on how to contact members and Neil suggested a photo be added to the opt-in feature to make it easier for newer members to put the faces to the names.  Gayle suggested divers always dive with identification and emergency information on their person.  She bought a Bag Tag and will post the information to the Facebook page and said Dennis also has information about an ID bracelet.
  • New Certifications:  Neil, along with Jim Steele, presented Rescue Diver certification cards to Clayton Downs and Devin Martinez-Shinn, and NAUI Training Assistant cards to Mike Barrett, DL Popplewell, and David Chervin.  Congratulations to all!
  • Elections:  Patti said nominations will be taken at the October 3 meeting for President, Vice-President, Secretary, Treasurer, and Membership.  A volunteer is also need to lead Entertainment.  Descriptions of these positions will be the next newsletter.
  • Memorial:  Matt is organizing a memorial for those lost on the Conception.  It will be held on Sunday, September 15.  Meet at 10am and bring flowers to release at the Metridium field, to be followed by a dive.
  • Reef Check Film:  David Chervin announced Reef Check will holding a fundraiser and  showing of the film ‘Racing Extinction’ at the New Parkway Theatre in Oakland on Sunday, September 15.  The show starts at 12:45pm and the donation is $15.
  • Monterey Bay Aquarium Sleepover:  Kat said MBA announced a 21 and over sleepover with a taco bar and a DJ.  It was sold out in 48 hours.  Kat called the Events Manager and they said they need to hear from the public that more events like this are in demand.  Members are urged to write MBA and Kat will post the contact information,  The cost for this event was $95 for members and $115 for non-members.  A private event could be held for 100 signups.

Past Dives

  • Bo dove Monastery a couple of weeks ago and enjoyed nice visibility of 20-25’.  Last week he dove Copper Roof and Breakwater and visibility wasn’t so good.
  • Devin nominated Jeff and Deb and they were awarded the Good Buddy award for taking Devin spearfishing.  They told him he would find a halibut and they dropped him right above a 30 lb. halibut. Devin was glad he didn’t have to compete with Deb for the fish.  They dove off their boat at Cypress Point at Black Dog and Humpback, as well as Lovers 2.
  • Bill Chinnock enjoyed Salt Point Camping weekend.  Diving was OK but Fort Ross had the worst visibility of all time.  Camping was fun and Bill closed the camp bar with Larry the Elder.
  • Matt was in Maui and where he saw frog fish and eels.  He decided to dive with just shorts and a t-shirt and was underweighted for the dive.  He carried some rocks for a while until the divemaster noticed his predicament and went back to the boat to get more weights.  Matt described a comedy of errors as the divemaster helped him place the weights on his belt while underwater.
  • Jim Driggers said he free dove with Elaine Berger at Gerstle Cove.  He has never seen the cove so bare of kelp; there was no bull kelp in sight and the bottom was urchins on top of urchins.  There were a few small abalone but the cove was 99% urchins.
  • Susan Donaldson drove 10,000 miles – across the U.S. and back – on her vacation and wanted to dive in Quebec.  However the rentals were $50 for four hours and she decided to free dive instead on the Gaspe Peninsula at Farillon National Park near the Gulf of St. Lawrence.  She went on two whale watching tours but they were not allowed to get close to the Beluga whales, as they are endangered.
  • Jeff M. dove at Lovers 2, had 60’ visibility, and a thresher shark touched him!

Bone Nominations

Matt for diving without sufficient weight!

Upcoming Activities and Dives


  • September 7-8: Fish Bait Urchin Removal with Waterman’s Alliance at Caspar.
  • September 21: Club Dive. POC is Kari and location is Copper Roof.  Meet at 9am.
  • October 12: Club Dive is a Full Moon (almost) dive at Breakwater, 4:30 pm. POC is DL. A tour of the Pacific Grove Hyperbaric Chamber will be held at 9:30am.  20 spots are available and there is no cost.
  • November 9-11: Club Dive Veterans Day Weekend, three days of diving. POC is Kat Smith.  The 10th will be Point Lobos.  Copper Roof will be another location and there is a possibility of a three-tank boat dive on the 11th.  Kat also has rented a house that sleeps ten or more.  Let Kat know if you’re interested in staying at the house.
  • December 20 to 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: Indonesia, one space remaining.  Dennis is POC


  • July: Bonaire with Dennis.

Upcoming Meetings

  • September 19: Board meeting.  Patti encouraged members to attend a Board meeting to see how it works.  The meeting lasts for an hour, during which the Board has dinner.
  • October 3: General Meeting
  • October 17: Board Meeting

Meeting adjourned at 9:15pm.