Continuing my coverage of the ping pong program at the St. Joseph Catholic Church gym, Third and E Street, I can report that we’re off to a great start. We’ve got five tables so far, and we meet 3–6 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday until the end of August. Due to the growing popularity of the program, we could use more tables if anyone wants to donate a table they’re not using.
We are continuing to expand, and we would like to extend an invitation to parents to bring their teens and for grandparents to bring their teen grandchildren. The regulations limit participation to players 18 and older, as well as players under 18 who are accompanied by a parent or other adult. I believe the inclusion of mature young people would add a lot to the tournament that we are going to hold at the end of August.
Our thanks go out to Canyon Dauber, who initiated the program with the approval of Father Adam. Also, Canyon and his dad, Chris Dauber, are our two best players. It’s exciting to watch these two play. Canyon said that over many years of trying, he has never been able to beat his dad.
I also want to thank Jim Penticoff and Jim Cable, who always arrive right at 3 p.m. to help me set up the tables. This is a big job, and their help and early arrival are really appreciated. If anyone else, regular players or new players, could come a little early and help them, it would be appreciated. Jim Cable doesn’t play ping pong, because of bad eyesight. He comes to support his wife, Bin Cable, a Chinese lady who plays beautifully.
It’s fun to get to know everybody in the program. We have a chance to sit and chat between games. For example, Renee Armas and Matthew Hill live just a block from the church. Renee has done a lot to publicize the program, and she said she is going to make a billboard. She remembers fondly the days when she lived in Sacramento and participated in the Parks and Recreation activities before they lost funding. She said she won more different contests than she can count, including ping pong, hula hoops, etc. She got in the newspaper “hundreds of times.”
Terri Giao comes to play ping pong after cleaning houses all week. Even so, she’s still the best female player. Bill Thomas plays to help him get over a stroke, and it’s working. What a sweet guy! Jim
I urge everyone to drop in from 3–6 p.m. on Tuesday and Thursday. What a great way to meet your neighbors and get some exercise. Many of the players say they “work up a sweat.” It’s a well-rounded program, but we could use more women and senior citizens. Remember the column in which I mentioned an American woman who won a recent international senior tournament in Japan. She was 89 years old.