Woodshop News

Previous Years

(From SEPO Newsletter (2021-04)

This is the last article for the Woodworkers Club until fall. Thank you to all who have helped with cleanup, winterization, orientation and instruction. The woodshop will continue to operate on the days when a monitor is present. As we come nearer to the summer season, two woodworkers will make themselves available on specific days of the week. Vic Hillman will serve as monitor every Tuesday from 9 am until noon.  Pat Harvey will serve as monitor every Friday from 9 am until noon. Safe travels and safe summer woodworking.

Jerry Wetherbee     President


(From SEPO E-News during Winter Season 2020-2021)
Subject: Woodshop Orientation Class was held on the following dates:

Oct 5, 2020, Oct 28, 2020, Dec 30, 2020, Jan 13, 2021, Jan 20, 2021, Jan 27, 2021 & Mar 29, 2021.

There were several Woodshop Orientation Classes held this winter in the wood shop.

A one-time attendance is a requirement for use of the wood shop. The shop will be closed during the class. All residents are invited to attend. Limited attendance due to Covid-19 restrictions. Face Masks Required.
Call John Chajec at 708-280-8940 to register.


Sent: Thursday, October 15, 2020 5:35 PM
Subject: Wood Shop 1st Meeting

Hi Neighbors, I'm sending this out to the community to encourage new residents, who might be interested, to join the Wood Shop. We will be having our first meeting at the pavilion on Friday, October 23 at 1:00 pm. 
Jack Berning, Vice President, will conduct the meeting. Masks and social distancing are required. The Wood Shop has several members who can answer questions about woodworking, stained glass, other projects, and the use and care of the equipment. All are welcome!     Marian Young, Secretary


(FROM Newsletter: 03-2020) Woodworkers' Club Report - 

The days are flying; by and, if you drive by the Woodshop, you’ll hear the woodworking power tools buzzing away. The woodworkers, some of whom will be leaving next month, are spending time on the projects they want to take home. The Woodshop now has two SAWSTOPs (see pictures and additional info directly above).     Suzie Sawyer, President

(FROM Newsletter: 02-2020) Woodworker’s Club Report -  

Once again, the residents of Sunshine Estates gave outstanding support to the Woodworker’s Club and its spaghetti dinner this past week. And the number of people who gave their time to prepare the food (special kudos to the kitchen help), served the food and drinks, baked cakes and cleaned up afterwards are thanked for spending their time and efforts to help the Woodshop as well.


As some of you know, the Woodshop is replacing the current table saws with SAWSTOPS that instantaneously shut down should a finger or hand touch the blade when the machine is running.  Thanks to Pat Harvey and his committee for undertaking this huge task. One of the SAWSTOPS will be purchased with Woodshop funds; the other through a fundraising effort. If you’d like to support the Woodshop in this project as well, you can do so by delivering a check to the Woodshop.


Monitor trainings have been given by Jack Berning and there are currently 24 authorized monitors for the Woodshop; in January, 13 more people took the Orientation and Safety Class done by John Chajec. Consider giving woodworking a try!


On Tuesday, February 4, from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., Dennis Pickett will be teaching a class on lathing acrylics in the Woodshop. He has made some beautiful bowls and vases and it’s another hobby that can be fun and challenging. No need to sign up; just show up! Thanks, Dennis, for doing this for us.


Wednesday, February 5, at 8:00 a.m. is the monthly scheduled woodshop clean-up and we sure would love to see a few more faces to help the dependable 4-5 people who always show up to clean.


Woodworker’s Club meetings in February will be held on the 14th and 28th at 1:00 p.m. in the Woodshop.


Suzie Sawyer, President


Sent: Monday, January 13, 2020 9:39 AM
Subject: Woodshop News


TWO IMPORTANT WOODSHOP TRAININGS will be held on Thursday, January 16 at the Woodshop.

A Monitor Refresher Course will be held at 1:00 p.m.  This is a mandatory class each year for all authorized monitors at the Woodshop.  No refresher course, no key!

At 4:00 pm. an Orientation and Safety Class will be held.  This class is mandatory for any SEPO residents who wish to use the equipment within the Woodshop.

Because of these two trainings, the Woodshop will be closed the afternoon of January 16.

Suzie Sawyer   573-216-4792 


Sent: Tuesday, January 7, 2020 9:55 AM
Subject: Woodshop Orientation Class on Thursday, January 16th at 4 pm

  • There will be a Woodshop Orientation Class on Thursday, January 16th at 4 pm in the wood shop.

  • A one-time attendance is a requirement for use of the wood shop.

  • The shop will be closed during the class.

  • All residents are invited to attend. No signup is necessary.

Any questions call John Chajec at 708-280-8940

(FROM Newsletter: 01-2020) Woodworkers' Club Report - 

Activity at the Woodshop is finally picking up as the late snowbirds make their migration south.  At the most recent meeting, the Woodworkers’ Club elected new officers for 2020. They include Cathy Chajec, Treasurer; Marian Young, Secretary; Jack Berning, Vice President; and Suzie Sawyer, President.  The term of office begins on January 1, 2020.  A heartfelt thank you to Chuck McEvoy who served as the Woodshop Secretary for 4 years.


The membership was recently presented with a proposal to investigate the possible purchase of a miraculous table saw called SAWSTOP.  If you google it, you will see that somehow the whole table saw shuts down in a flash if flesh or dampness touches the saw blade.  A demonstration of the SAWSTOP was held on Tuesday, December 17, and over 30 woodworkers attended.  All were amazed at the split-second response of the table saw that eliminates the hazard of being cut by the saw.  At the January 10 meeting, the membership will consider purchasing a SAWSTOP from the treasury and having a fund-raising effort to purchase a second SAWSTOP.  The technology is available to end the possibility of serious injuries on table saws, so the matter is worth addressing.  We encourage woodworkers to attend the January 10 meeting at 1:00 p.m. at the Woodshop to vote on this matter.


It is our hope that SEPO residents will once again support the Woodworkers’ Spaghetti Dinner scheduled for Tuesday, January 21. Cathy Chajec is again heading up the event and will need several 9x13 cakes, cooks, servers and a clean-up crew to provide a nice evening at Retzlaff Hall.  Tickets will be on sale starting January 6 and can be purchased from members of the Woodworkers’ Club.  Securing help for the spaghetti dinner will also be an item on the agenda at the January 10 meeting.


Wishing everyone the best of the Christmas season and a Happy New Year. 


Suzie Sawyer, President   573-216-4792


(FROM Newsletter: 12-2019) WOODWORKERS - 

Our Tool Committee has evaluated the drills within the shop and are giving away the items in the pictures below. If you want a drill, some with batteries or chargers and some without, visit the Woodshop and select the tool you want. If they don't find a new home by December 6, they will be disposed of.




It will also be closed on Friday, November 29, for maintenance.


We are still a little short of having enough monitors to keep the shop open from Monday through Friday from 9:00 a.m.-noon and 1:00p.m.-4:00 p.m.  So, if you go there for some reason and it is closed, bear with us. Things will perk up after the holidays.


There will be a monitor class/refresher course on Wednesday, December 4 at 1:00 p.m. that will cover monitor responsibilities and some additional shop safety information.


Elections will take place at the December 13 meeting (held at 1:00 p.m. at the Woodshop) and there will not be a meeting on December 27.  If you are interested in holding an office in the Club, please leave a message to that effect on 573-216-4792.


Suzie Sawyer, President


Sent: Saturday, August 3, 2019 4:30 PM
Subject: August Woodshop Hours


The woodshop will be open Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday mornings from 9:00 AM this month. The shop may close before noon depending on how much activity there is, so don't wait until to close to noon if you need something.

If you have any comments on the scruffy, junky sign on the Woodshop, please let me know. Ignoring the ink-jet printer lettering, it is a "sample" of what a permanent sign might look like (size, color and wording). Thanks Pat Harvey

Sent: Friday, June 7, 2019 1:35 PM
Subject: Sunshine Woodshop - June Hours


It's Summer time and like everything else in Sunshine, the woodshop slows down in the summer. In spite of the summer heat, the woodshop Monitors are making an extra effort to keep the woodshop available. For the month of June the shop will be open:

  • Tuesdays 9:00 until Noon

  • Tuesdays 1:00 until 3:00

  • Thursdays 9:00 until Noon

  • Fridays 9:00 until Noon 


In fairness to the Monitors, if there is little activity, they may close early, so if you wait until 5 minutes before closing time you may be disappointed.

If you have a crisis need, you can contact any Monitor to find a time other than the above. Enjoy the summer.     Pat Harvey


Woodworkers’ News

It’s nice to welcome back the late-comers who finally found their way to the Rio Grande Valley. Weather here certainly is better than it is in the northern states. And, business sure has picked up at the Woodshop. It is also amazing how supportive the people living in our development are of the woodworkers’ group.


The Woodworkers’ Spaghetti Dinner on Tuesday, January 29, is going to be a SOLD OUT event once again. Our thanks to everyone who purchased tickets. The woodworkers look forward to serving you dinner on Tuesday. 


The woodworkers have held orientation classes for new woodworkers, refresher classes for monitors at the woodshop, and turning classes for people who want to make their own bowls, vases, and anything else that can be made on a lathe. 

The woodworkers have two meetings a month on the second and fourth Friday at 1:00 p.m. at the woodshop. February’s meetings will be held on the 8th and 22nd. Feel free to join us to meet a lot of great guys and gals, now that more women are getting involved. If you have visitors at your house, feel free to bring them to see woodshop because we believe SEPO has one of the best woodshops in the Rio Grande Valley!


Again, thanks to everyone for ensuring that the Woodworkers’ Spaghetti Dinner will be another great success.


Suzie Sawyer, President