February 2023 Newsletter

The latest park activity:

The Cornhole Craze

by Dale Dauten

It’s odd that two of the games to recently catch on have odd names: pickleball and cornhole. It’s as though both were given names in hopes of not catching on. Nevertheless, go out to the area behind the swimming pool at Silveridge, and you’ll find lots of residents enjoying both. The newer of the two at Silveridge is cornhole, and we were out one perfect January morning to check it out.

(Photo: The cornhole court is just past the swimming pool. Note the pickleball courts just behind.)

First, let’s take a minute to try to explain that name “cornhole.” The game itself can be traced to quoits (like horseshoes but played with rings) and to an 1883 patent for an indoor version, using beanbags and a hole as a target. A toy company brought out a version called “Faba Baga.” Then, in 1974, Popular Mechanics ran an article about a similar game called “Bean-bag Bull’s-eye” and that article is credited with explaining the rise in popularity. But, where does the “corn” come in? A company that sells cornhole supplies offers an alternative history. In that version, a 14th-Century cabinet maker saw that some children had invented a game that involved throwing rocks into a groundhog hole. Being a cabinet maker, he decided to create an indoor version using a hole in a wooden board, and instead of rocks, used small bags filled with corn. Apparently, corn was plentiful at that time, so it was cornbags, not beanbags, aimed at the cabinetry’s hole.

The game seems to have truly established itself in Chicago in the 1970s and Cincinnati in the 1980s and its popularity is such that the American Cornhold Organization’s ”Championships of Bags” has made it to ESPN.

At Silveridge, cornhole has a home where the old and unused horseshoe pits used to be found, tucked between the swimming pool, tennis courts, pickleball courts, and the theater. Over the park’s most recent off-season, that area was reinvented, using pavers and with tables and chairs sporting blue umbrellas.

Activities Director Lu Way had envisioned getting cornhole established at Silveridge, and resident Steve Boucher (pronounced “boo-shay”) jumped in to lead the effort. By mid-January, the boards had been secured and scoring signs has been put up, and the game was already catching on.

The new custom boards are out (under covers to protect them) and available for practice or play, while the new Cornhold Club meets every weekday at 11AM.

The rules and scoring can be easily picked up, but we did find a list of terminology, including these, the most colorful highlights:

  • Cornfusion: when players or teams cannot agree on the scoring of an inning.
  • Drano: a bag that falls in the hole, scoring three points.
  • Dirt bag: a bag that is on the ground or is hanging off the board and touching the ground.
  • Flop bag, floppy bag: type of toss that does not spin the bag horizontally or vertically, a bag without rotation or spin.
  • Hooker: a bag that hits the board and while hooking or curving around a blocker goes into the hole.
  • Jumper: a bag that strikes another bag on the board causing it to jump up and into the hole.
  • Woody: any bag that has been pitched and remains on the board’s surface at the end of the inning (scoring one point).

Steve tells us that new players are always welcome and there are no fees/dues. That may come later, if the club evolves to where it holds tournaments or competes with other parks, but for now, everyone is just glad to be out and tossing, cheering on the Dranos.


One of the ways we hope to make this newsletter useful is by passing along recommendations from residents of local medical practices that have been particularly helpful. Annette Thorson of Silveridge (and of Champlin, Minnesota) came through for us all with her recent message:

I typically have seen a dermatologist every six months for ongoing skin cancer issues. I started seeing Dr. Michael Lehrer last year and continued this year. I am very impressed with his knowledge, interest, and sense of humor. My dermatologist in the Minneapolis area has much more experience, but Dr. Lehrer follows similar guidelines and often offers suggestions for prevention in a very nice manner. This is important when you are spending six months of the year or more in the Arizona sun. Dr. Lehrer’s office is on Baseline and Hawes; it is very near here. His education was at the Mayo Clinic here in Phoenix.


Sossamon Dental Office right next to CVS at Southern & Sossamon is also very good and reasonably priced compared to my dental office in MN. They are also very willing to work with out-of-state dental insurance.


Thanks, Annette, and we invite others to share their thoughts. Just send them to Dale at ddauten@gmail.com.


We are very blessed to spend our winters in Arizona. It is fabulous to

see everyone back here at Silveridge. Everyone is out and about playing

their favorite sport or craft and enjoying the live music at the dinner

dances while family and friends are hibernating back home trying to

hide from the cold temperatures, snow and ice.

The feeling of Silveridge echoes small town charm not often found in

larger cities these days. It’s a special place where you still know your

neighbors, want to meet the new ones, people smile, wave and folks

actually look out for one another. Recently, Teri had some health issues

and she told me she couldn’t believe how many people had called to

check on her. It warmed her heart. Before she was discharged from

the hospital they asked if she had anyone she could call if she needed

some help. She replied, “Actually, a couple hundred of them.”

We breezed through January with singing, dancing, laughing and making

new friends. Now, we are ready to nurture those friendships with

exciting activities. The upcoming One of These Nights, Tennessee

River, Dick Clark American Bandstand and Dolly Parton concerts are

sure to entertain. February is packed with fun activities including the

Sweetheart Dinner Dance, food truck Wednesdays, and more Karaoke

Fridays. I am working

One of my greatest joys as the Activity Director is watching everyone

participate in the different events and enjoy themselves. I’m still working

on a few more surprises for this season. Stay tuned for more

adventures ahead.


Your Activity Team,

Lu & Teri