Sharing News—Building Community—Preserving History......................... February 2021
Preserving and Improving Our Clubhouse
By Elaine Park, President

Our clubhouse has undergone significant changes over the past few years. At each stage, the goal has been to restore the building’s original character while upgrading to modern building standards.

This past autumn we addressed lighting and sound deficiencies in the auditorium. This project represented the most extensive renovations to the interior of the clubhouse in 50 years. The fluorescent lights have been replaced with fixtures that have the look of 1911 while providing attractive, dimmable, energy-saving lighting. 

An even bigger project was the acoustical upgrade. This is a heard-but-not-seen improvement: The acoustical paneling is virtually invisible, but the sound difference is phenomenal. Where once keys falling to the floor or chairs scraping were painfully loud, and large gatherings were so noisy you couldn’t hear your neighbor, now you can hear easily what you want to hear, without echoes and distortion.

There are so many club members to thank for these steps forward, and, at the risk of forgetting anyone, I’d like to particularly call out Sally Newman, Liz Ditz, Kathy Zmay, Jim Pierce, Hilary Paulson, and especially Jane Taylor for her innumerable hours of research, meetings, and project management. 
Analysis, Design, and Installation
By Jane Taylor, First Vice President

This project involved multiple stages over many months of searching for the right solutions for the auditorium. The first step was to hire Charles M Salter Associates, who tested and analyzed the auditorium’s acoustics and wrote the specifications for a system that would provide optimal balance between conversation on the floor and musical performances from the stage. 

Deciding on a product and finding a supplier presented new challenges, as our need to maintain the historic appearance of the auditorium greatly limited the type of material and the companies that would be willing to work with our vintage plaster walls. 

Fortunately, we found ELS Architects, who were experienced in working with historic buildings. They gathered information on the clubhouse’s history, took measurements and photographs, and reviewed permit and building code requirements. After careful research, they recommended the Eurospan acoustic system and developed the specifications and installation plan. As the Eurospan system would be installed on the ceiling as well as the walls, it was the right moment to also update our lighting. ELS helped us select the best light fixtures, based on their photometric studies to determine the required level of illumination, and created the plan drawings.

For the final stage, our treasurer, Jim Pierce, stepped in to help manage the construction and locate vendors. Local company Foley Electric was hired for the electrical work, which required using a giant scissor lift to install the new lighting fixtures. The 16 old fluorescent lights were taken away by an antique specialist from Monterey who was renovating an old general store. Acoustical Designs, from Occidental, installed the Eurospan system, using scaffolding to reach the 17-foot-high ceiling.
After After
Technical Details
The Eurospan system is 750 square feet of sound-absorbing fiberglass paneling covered by two layers of special fabric stretched over a framework of tracking. The net result is that the walls and ceiling look exactly the same as they have for 110 years, but the room’s acoustics are dramatically different. 

The custom-manufactured lights, supplied by G Lighting, are vintage in appearance yet are state-of-the-art LED fixtures that meet California’s Title 24 energy efficiency code requirements.
Thank You to Our Supporters
The club extends special thanks to our lighting vendors, All Industrial Electrical Supply, for their assistance and generosity in procuring the new light fixtures. Their help was invaluable in coordinating communications with the lighting manufacturer, and their sales representative waived his sales commission to reduce our costs by several thousand dollars.

Thanks are also due to ELS Architecture and Design for their critical work on our project and for so generously discounting their fees for us. We also thank JPH Design Management and Steve Zmay for their support and assistance.
Redwood City Woman’s Club Newsletter
Newsletter Staff: Anne Callery, Jackie Killen     

RWCWC Board of Directors:
President: Elaine Park
First Vice President: Jane Taylor
Second Vice President: Hilary Paulson
Treasurer: Jim Pierce
Recording Secretary: Anne Callery
Corresponding Secretary: Liz Ditz
Clubhouse Rental Chairperson: Sally Newman
Parliamentarian: Edythe Miller
With generous support from:
Submissions to the newsletter are welcome and appreciated. Send your information to info@rwcwc.com.
Deadline for April 2021 newsletter: 
Friday, Mar. 19