Intelligencer - March 2009



Chad McQueen helped organize a safe-driving skills course for local teens.

Photo credit: ALBERT HIRSON

Passing Zone
An avid racer, Steve McQueen did many of his own stunts in films such as LeMans, Bullitt, The Great Escape, and The Getaway. Apparently, he passed along some driving DNA to son Chad. A former race car driver and father of two children attending Marywood Palm Valley High School, Chad McQueen helped organize a safe-driving skills course for local teens. Stunt driver Greg Pene, who has whisked everything from Acuras to Volkswagens along ribbons of highway in car commercials, was among the instructors.

His and Hers
Call it kismet, coincidence, luck, or simply a woman out to prove something. Fran Suydam of Indian Wells celebrated a hole-in-one only six days after her husband, John, hit one. The odds of one amateur shooting a hole-in-one is 15,000 to 1. Their combined achievement within a week made us check to see if the Earth still revolves around the sun. It gets spookier: Both hit their shots at Toscana Country Club on par-3 seventh holes — she on the North Course, he on the South (at least there’s still some order in the universe).

Birdies on the Course
Audubon International has certified Shadow Ridge Golf Club for its Audubon Cooperative Sanctuary Program, which recognizes the preservation of natural areas and wildlife habitats. The Marriott property in Palm Desert features plant species that not only require minimal water, but also attract hummingbirds. And owl and bat boxes attract natural predators for bugs and rodents.

Keep it Cool
Wine Vault of the Desert, opening next month in Palm Desert, offers climate-controlled storage as flexible as one needs. Though wine lockers are available, the open-storage area allows individuals, clubs, restaurants, wine shops, and distributors to store wine for $2 a month per case. Services include inventorying (accessible online), pickup, delivery, and use of a wine-tasting room. The operation is a beta site for Bonded Services, which provides climate-controlled film storage for movie studios.
 

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