Garden Club – December ’09

By Barb Prater

Holiday Party Coming Up

Holiday time brings lots of parties and social get-togethers, and one I always look forward to is the Garden Club Holiday Party (this is after 30 years of faculty and corporate soirees, so I know what I am talking about). After working really hard in our own and public garden areas and on fundraising projects like Homes Tour and Holiday Bazaar, it’s time to reward ourselves with a little well-earned evening out. This year Bev Sederquist (253 Apache Trail West) is graciously hosting us on Thur., December 17, at 7:30 p.m. with our spouses and significant others. Continue reading Garden Club – December ’09

QMGA – December ’09

By Gerry Wigginton

November has been quiet for the QMGA, now that the official golf season for Quivira is over for the 2009 season. Despite this, the weather was better for us than last month. The course still looks and plays well, and groups still pop up for play when conditions look good. The rough is not too long, and the leaves are scarcely apparent. December should be so good to us! Remember to wish our staff at the Pro Shop happy holidays and a fun vacation period in January

From the Official Rules of Bad Golf, Rule no 20 considers the Ball Missing in Fairway but Obviously Not Lost. For winter play, this should also include balls in the rough.

When a player cannot find a ball he has clearly hit into the fairway or rough, he may declare his ball to be “missing but not lost” and drop another ball in the approximate place where his original ball must have come to rest before mysteriously vanishing, and play that ball without penalty, provided he is convinced an unobserved action of an outside agency, the effects of an unexplained phenomenon, the intervention of a sinister force or the occurrence of a supernatural event, must have intervened.

Rule no 57 considers the Concession of Putts, always of interest to avid golfers.

A player is considered to have holed out on his next stroke, and his putt is deemed to be a “gimme” only as follows:

1. A first putt shall be conceded if it is so extraordinarily short that any player requiring it be putted would be held up to more ridicule for doing so than the player to whom the ball belongs would be if he putted and failed to sink it.

2. A second putt shall be conceded if it is no farther from the hole than the distance “in the leather,” or if the player’s first putt skirted, ringed, lipped, lapped, looped, circled, rimmed or curled around the hole, or hopped out of it after striking its interior.

3. A third putt shall be conceded if it can be reached and picked up within one giant step by a player standing by the hole or if that player reached the green in regulation, but failed to sink his second putt for par.

4.A fourth putt shall be conceded if it lies anywhere on the putting surface unless the player took a practice putt on that green.

Golf can be so much easier if we can all play by the Official Rules of Bad Golf.

The Mayor’s column – December ’09

News this month comes from outside the Council chambers where Sol Ellis and Mark Simpson formally filed an application for Lake Quivira’s (LQ) portion of the 64-acre “Links at Lake Quivira” development. With 38 acres of the proposed development inside the boundaries of LQ (the property to the South of Quivira Lane) and another 26 acres between Quivira Lane and Holliday Drive under the jurisdiction of the Unified Government of Wyandotte County (UG), I thought it might be helpful to review the process the application is anticipated to follow in the coming weeks. Continue reading The Mayor’s column – December ’09

Letter – Sandi Beck – thanks to community

On behalf of the entire Beck family I would like to thank this wonderful community for all the love and support you have given us over the past six years as Bear has been fighting Cancer.  You have been there with open arms, a word of encouragement, food for the entire family and so much love.  We cannot begin to tell you what it has meant to all of us.

Bear and I were married in our home the day we moved to Lake Quivira.  When I met Bear he said I was really going to love Kansas City because we were going to live in Lake Quivira, a place he had wanted to buy a home in for many years.  He was correct, we truly have loved living here and being a part of an amazing group of people.  We raised four children and nine grandchildren are now enjoying this wonderful community as well.

All the heartwarming cards and phone calls have been such a comfort. It is so nice to know that you have such good memories of Bear too.

We truly appreciate your thoughtfulness.

Sandi Beck and Family

McChesney’s Painted M Ranch

On Septmember 15, 2006, Quivira member Sam McChesney awoke at his new home at the Painted M Ranch in Olathe to the sound of dogs barking frantically. He got up to investigate, and he’ll never forget what he saw: “Wallpaper was burning like it was a mohair sweater. The flames just danced.”

Sam screamed for his son Jed to get out of bed—there was a fire in the house! “He thought I was overreacting to something,” says Sam, able now to smile. “I thought he was right behind me.

“I could hear his voice. I realized he had gone out of the house through the back door into the garage. Luckily the power hadn’t gone off. He was able to get the garage door open and escape.”

The house, which had taken 26 months to build, took 1 hour and 15 minutes to burn to charred beams and cinders. Sam’s wife, Vicki, had been in Utah. “We lost everything, including what our [grown] children were storing at the house,” says Sam.

Luckily, the fire did not spread to the other two houses on the ranch or to the barn, with its 25 stables. The horses were safe.

For those of you who last recall Sam, former Quivira resident, as president of Q Inc. or as a figure in HUD, owning and managing low-income housing, you maybe asking, “When did the McChesneys become horse people?”

You may remember Vicki liked horses and kept one at the Quivira stables. But Sam was indifferent, at best.

“I had a paint horse, ‘Scout,’ at the Lake,” says Vicki, who often rode with Elsie Davis. “I could have held a gun to Sam’s head and he wouldn’t have been able to identify which horse was mine.”

In 2001 Vicki went on a trail ride at Quivira with Randy and Jeanie Edwards. Randy commented, “You should get Sam to ride.” Vicki was unconvinced.

Randy went on, “I know Sam. He needs to take lessons.”

Sam acquiesced, riding for the first time in decades on Valentine’s Day 2002. Five lessons later he was hooked.

In Sam’s bio on the Painted M website, he writes, “My first lesson was on Mis, a 15 year old Morgan mare. We walked, trotted and cantered. I could not believe how much I enjoyed the rhythm of the canter.

Concurrent with Sam getting hooked on horses, the McChesneys had been pondering their next home—a “dream home” for their retirement.

The first dream home location they considered was Sedona, AZ. “We found the lots we’d been considering were actually closer than they’d appeared in the ads,” says Sam. “We didn’t want to get cozy enough with our neighbors to open and window and ask them to pass the sugar.”

The second possibility was a lot on Lakeshore at Lake Quivira. The lot was going to require major stone landscaping. At that time, Sam says, people weren’t building multi-million dollar homes, and he and Vicki weren’t sure the money the lot would require would ever pay off, so it was back to the drawing board.

Both Sam and Vicki agreed it would be nice to have horses on the property where they eventually settled. “With our kids out of the house, we wanted to build on an interest we could share,” says Sam.

“But I didn’t want to be married to caring for horses,” says Vicki. “We wanted to be able to get away.”

Then they hit on the idea of building an 8- or 10-horse barn and hiring someone for horse care.

That idea somehow morphed into the Painted M Ranch—70 acres housing a 25-horse barn with outdoor runs on exterior facing stalls; two heated wash bays with warm water; three tack up stalls and private tack lockers; an indoor, heated riding arena measuring 180’ x 80’; pasture land for grazing an additional 14 horses; two outdoor arenas – a western/roping arena and a show arena; three round pens for cutting, team sorting, roping practice and beginning lessons; and a few head of cattle they lease from their ranch manager, including longhorns, for roping practice. Also on-site is the McChesneys’ home (they rebuilt after the fire and moved in last Christmas) and two other houses—one for the ranch manager and one currently occupied by the McChesney’s son Jed.

The property the McChesneys bought is located off Kill Creek Road, to the south of K-10—just a mile down the road from the entrance to Kill Creek Park, which offers challenging riding trails on its 950 acres.

The land had been a sod farm, complete with three small ponds for irrigation. Sam hired Leon Rieke of Quivira to build a 26-foot dam, which created a 20 foot deep pond, near to which they built their sprawling ranch-type house, complete with salt-water pool. With its high ceiling and pine-log beams, it seems all the horses in the barn could actually bed down in the living room, but Sam insists they scaled the original house down by a third when re-building, paying special attention to fire-safe construction.

Early on, Sam enlisted the help of his current ranch manager, Bill Walton, who grew up on a family farm nearby and who had been simpatico with horses from an early age, first riding them to move the cattle his father ran and later progressing to halter breaking fillies and competing in cattle roping events in the United Rodeo Association.

Bill explains on his bio that he started his training career working with people’s problem horses. After he established a reputation for fixing problem horses, owners started sending their regular horses. Bill began giving lessons to help the owners of the problem horses he had fixed.

His personal interest is in roping and other Western activities (reining, cutting, team sorting, and western pleasure), but he has also instructed dressage and hunter jumpers.

Sam counts on Bill’s aptitude with machinery, crops, cattle and sod to take care of the property and physical plant. “I’m totally un-mechanical,” admits Sam.

In addition to Bill, they employ a riding instructor, Stacy Maher, who has owned a number of show horses and competed with all of them, showing in Halter, Showmanship, Western Pleasure, Western Horsemanship, Trail, Hunter Under Saddle and Equitation.

Stacy writes that her coaching program begins with the fundamentals of proper handling of the horse, grooming and tacking up.  As she and her charge progress to riding, she stresses proper horsemanship/equitation skills, light hands and using rider aids properly, including seat, hands, legs and body position.

Her horse training program includes teaching the horse the basics she believes virtually every horse must know.  Her riding program focuses on teaching the horse to carry itself in a balanced, collected way, focusing on proper movement and proper head carriage.

But Sam ably handles nearly everything else: financial, marketing, administrative, advertising, customer relations, boarding agreements, capital expenditures, budget, hiring.

Vicki continues to be enthusiastic about their original plan and how it’s playing out. Relaxed and comfortable in jeans, hoodie, and well-worn cowboy boots, she seems in her element as she tells amusing anecdotes about their own horses and the ones who merely live there.

“I love living near the animals,” she confesses. “I ride every day I can.”

Sam, too, seems relaxed, yet definitely on top of his game, bringing in the administrative expertise he garnered in years of housing development.

He still enjoys the rhythm of the cantor he experienced at his first riding lesson just seven years ago. “Since that time,” he says, “I have been a lesson-taking fool. I have found this sport enormously challenging. I thought golf was tough. With the energy I have expended riding in the last three years, I could be playing golf professionally.”

For more information about the Painted M Ranch, go to

To view more pictures taken at the Painted M Ranch, go to

McChesneys and horse in stable