OWA 2009 Annual Retreat
Our 2009 Annual Retreat took place September 11 to 13, 2009 at the Westerbeke Ranch in Sonoma County. Accommodations were shared rooms in rustic redwood cabins set among landscaped grounds including pool and hot tub. The towns of Sonoma and Glen Ellen are minutes away.
The weekend included conversation, recreation, yoga, hiking, swimming, hot tub, massage, art, music, good eating, and laughter.
Thanks to the enthusiasm of OWA retreat attendees and the thoughtful donation of several scholarships from OWA and retreat attendees to assist the unemployed and recent graduates, the retreat enjoyed a full house.
The program this year was to learn more about our own varied interests and experiences and to give everyone more time to converse with the group than the usual gripping but limited 3 minutes on Friday night.
The presentations turned out to be as engaging and unique as we had hoped. Those with a professional focus included the design of a green home (Judith Wasserman), a discussion on "how big is a building", about programming for large institutions for greater efficiency (Christie Coffin), a description of planning for equestrian facilities for the National Parks Service (Andrea Lucas & Carolyne Orazi), interfacing with the community over a major Kaiser medical facility development in Oakland (Cameron White), the energy pros and cons or repair versus replacement of windows in a historic home (Rosemary Muller) and new approaches to contracting for construction of university buildings (Alicia Rosenthal).
Several members bought paintings, sculpture and photography (Judy Rowe, Leslie Allen, Linda Corbett, Stacy Webb, Julia Bergren and Betty Woo). Gisela Leuchel and Kirsten Kruse showed their beautiful knitting which offers a respite from professional tasks, and Ann Wright brought a stunning quilt.
Several members talked about where they are in their professional life and shared their thinking of future interests, priorities and opportunities.
And Jamie Brown, guitar player from early youth, sang two moving songs including one that she wrote herself.
The art project this year was beading, lead by Leslie Allen, Mary Anne Perkowski and Hana Mori. The results were quote wonderful: from elegant and witty necklaces to fine bead weaving, a specialty of Hana's.
The group enjoyed two yoga sessions lead by Pam Field with humor and encouragement. The musical entertainment was one of the best bands to liven Saturday night: Annie Byrd and the Tee Fee Swamp Boogie Band, playing Cajun and Zydeco music and leading the group in the two step, crooked waltz and a Cajun variation on the electric slide which had the whole room on its feet.
Many, many thanks to the retreat committee: Judith Wasserman, Rosemary Muller, Mary Anne Perkowski, Leslie Allen, Hana Mori and Heather Sprague. We look forward to seeing you in Sonoma on September 24 - 26, 2010!
2009 OWA Retreat Flier.