Press Room

These are press releases recently submitted to Newspapers. The focus of the articles is very narrow and does not necessarily represent the Clubs main activities, rather just one of the facets.

Computer Club’s Largest Event Coming

 Preparations for the Hernando Computer Club’s most important and largest event are in full swing. It is Expo 07,  the Club’s open house, happening October 15,  from 5  to 9 p.m.  The public is invited to come and check out what the Club has to offer. Visit us at the Shriner's Club Bldg., 13400 Montour St., (off Sunshine Grove Rd.), Brooksville. It is free to all.   Volunteers are working hard to make this showcase a success. There are greeters who will smile at you when you enter and answer your questions, registrars who sign up new members, the manager of coffee and refreshments who will offer free refreshments, plus the many instructors and computer users like yourself.   Most of the Club's eighteen instructors will be present and  available to show what classes the Club has to offer.  The Club is fortunate to have a wonderful group of volunteer instructors, some are retired school teachers, many trained professionally as business people.. There are programmers, networking specialists, consulting business owners, web site designers, photographers and highly-trained technicians. As varied as are the backgrounds of our instructions, that faceted are the variety of classes. Introduction to Windows XP and the very new Vista Operating System, Microsoft Office programs like Word, Power Point, Excel, Graphics, Web Site Creation, Video Editing, Video Chatting, Print Shop,  and Genealogy. For the  photographer, the club offers Adobe Photoshop, Slide Show Creating and much more. See our web site at  Many subjects are represented at the  table displays. The instructors will demonstrate their subject and answer any of your questions. It  will be a fun night out, and it’s free -- it is informative! The enthusiasm is contagious. There is even detailed instruction not only how to repair and maintain your computer but also how to build one from scratch. Five new state-of-the-art computers  being built by the Club Techies for the Hands-on lab will also be on display.. So we invite you to come and  enjoy the exhibits. Membership openings will be available so visit our tables, have a snack, enjoy yourself, and sit down and  talk to our registrars about the cost of membership and individual classes.  Please call (352) 592-0070 for directions and any questions you may have.





New Vista capable PCs in time for the Club EXPO

The pressure is building up for the Hernando Computer Club to provide Hand-On training for Windows Vista and the new updated Vista ready programs like the new MS Office 7. For months now Vic Symonds offers lecture classes on various aspects of the new Vista Operating System every month and these became the most visited lectures lately. The Club even is holding already Hands-On-Your-own-Laptop classes in the Lab lead by Ron Purkhiser. But still, nothing is as effective as the Hands-On Class operating on the same software to learn something new.

Although the existing lab computers recently got a bunch more RAMs, so they could handle high end photo manipulation with Adobe Photoshop and Video Editing with Adobe Premiere Elements, still they are not capable enough to handle the new Vista.

So the Club now will have built 5 very capable new PCs in time for the upcoming Club EXPO on October 15. Vic Symonds and his Techies, Wolfgang Steinberger, Jim Rogers and John Hectus will in assembly style work create this new technological wonders. From Fire Wire, DVD Writers, to Card Readers, these machines will feature all the bells and whistles. They will run on Windows XP as well as Windows Vista just as needed.
All the photography enthusiasts will be able to put their own cameras storing devices to use, and their newly acquired photo manipulation skills to work.

During the Expo on October 15, the instructors will have displays, where they show the subject they teach and are available to everybody with questions.



Intro to Vista

The featured Event for August is a lecture by Vic Symonds introducing Windows Vista, Microsoft’s new operating system. This is the software that enabled you to interact with your PC or Laptop.  If you buy a PC or laptop today most like Windows Vista will be installed. If you want to upgrade the machines you are using now to Vista go to the Microsoft Website and have your PC checked out if it is ready to handle the new software, and with programs might need updates so they function in Vista as you want them to function. Vic will introduce you to all the major changes and improvements. There are Benefits to using Vista, It is safer, more entertaining, better connected. What are the areas you see changes? Communication, Gaming, Music, TV and Movie, and Memory management.  All in all after you have attended the lecture you will be much better informed and prepared to know what you can expect from an upgrade or new PC.
The Hernando Computer Club provides lectures and Hands-On Classes in a wide variety of subjects. Please check the Club’s Website for the schedule.

Hernando Computer Club goes Wireless

At the recommendation of the Facilities director Ron Purkhiser, the Hernando Computer Club added a wireless network. The easy part was purchasing the router and the hard part is installing the addition to the existing hard wired network. Here came Dave Curtis, a Senior instructor and Techie with the Club, owner of Brooksville Computer, a networking company, and volunteered his time and expertise to install and proof the wireless system.

Several opportunities are opening up now for the Club.  New kinds of classes can now be held that are a middle thing between lecture and hands-on classes. Everybody who recently purchased a lab top most likely has to acquire new skill using Vista. No better place than coming to the Club and take Introduction to Vista. You bring your labtop to the lecture hall and Vic Symonds, the Club’s Vista specialist, will make exploring the new operation system a refreshing venture. Following the demonstration by doing on your own machine, what better way to learn is there.

There were concerns about the safety of wireless connections, but as it was explained recently by Steve Herzman an Internet Security specialist at a lecture class he held at the Club about Internet vulnerability, each router added to a network represents another level of additional security. Wireless networks are more secure than hard wired kind.

The Hernando Computer club is the place to learn everything about computers. The next featured event April 30, 7pm, is a lecture named: What you can find out about your Real Estate. An online guide of places you can go to find out everything you want to know about your and your neighbor’s home.


On Monday evening, June 4, the Hernando Computer Club enjoyed a social evening with the members which included a Chinese Auction along with a pot luck supper. The Hernando Computer Club, 13400 Montour St., Brooksville, usually filled with attentive members learning how to operate their computers, put aside their books and lessons on computers and had a wonderful evening socializing with each other. Although they are serious with their computer learning, they also enjoy some fun and games.
There was entertainment for all provided by the talented quartet of men named Tom Russo, Pat Russo, Dennis Boff and Ed Gallaway. The auction was entertaining in itself as the numbers of winning tickets were called out for many items donated to the club, with individual computer lessons offered by the volunteer Instructors, and many donations of gift certificates by local merchants.  Please see the listing of these donors on the club's web site
The club welcomes those users of computers to visit the general meetings, check out  the schedule and attend a lesson.  Many hands-on lessons are available where the members sit at computers fitted with all the up-to-date programs and learn the use of a computer program in a closed session with a few other members and two instructors. Getting this type of instruction makes the user more positive in one's approach to computers. A large selection of programs is available to members. The lessons are available mornings, afternoon and evenings -- see schedules.
Directions to the club and schedules of both lecture classes and hands-on classes may be located on the web site, or phone the club at 592-0070 with your inquiries.
PICTURE ENCLOSED:  One club member smiles as his number is called for a prize he had hoped to win.



What you can find out about your Real Estate


On April 30 at 7 p.m. the Hernando Computer Club, (Shriner's Bldg) 13400 Montour St., Brooksville, will hold its monthly featured event. Woody Marr, a Spring Hill Real Estate Professional, graciously offered to hold a lecture on how one can research facts about one’s home or investments. By putting himself in the shoes of a home owner, Woody will demonstrate how to navigate the many Web sites dedicated to provide information. Many sites just want your information, but others provide a wealth of information without any conditions. He will show how to find and navigate the Public Records of the County, where you can see who the previous owners were, how much they sold a house for, plot information, mortgage recorded, tax information, FEMA zoning and so much more. Other sites are dedicated to showing which houses are currently on the market in your immediate neighborhood and what the asking prices are. You also can find which homes around your property  sold recently and for what price. It never hurts to know what is going on. He will also touch on the subject how to shop for a good agent and why, if you really want to sell, it is more promising to list a house than doing it on your own. What is this Multiple Listing Service? How does it help you? He will give hints about mortgage shopping and much more interesting information.


Woody Marr has been in sales and sales management and training for over 33 years. He is known as a world class trainer and coach and has published a book entitled “Relationship Selling”. Woody and his wife are very successful  realtors with REMAX Advantage Realty in Hernando County. Living life to its fullest, he is an avid blue water sailor, master scuba diver, a frustrated golfer and really enjoys a backyard BBQ with friends!


Although this meeting is for club members, membership is still open for the month of April, and applications may be accepted that evening.  Please call 352-592-0070, or visit for more information and class schedules. The Hernando Computer Club's goal is to provide its members with low-cost training for everything computer related. The Club is run by volunteers who always strive to provide a wide variety of topics. The more volunteers who offer to be instructors,  the wider the variety. Wonderful lecture and hands-on classes are offered, from Introduction to Computers and Windows to Web site Creation, or Introduction to Vista.



Elections Held at the Hernando Computer Club

A new slate of Board members will be bringing the Hernando Computer Club into the New Year. New energy has been infused and big changes with challenges are in store for the club.
Don Karslake, the new President for 2007, has been working tirelessly to increase the membership all last year. Most new members were Beginners who sought help with the most basic subjects about using a computer. That’s why every month the Club offers a lecture named Introduction to Computers, as well as Basic Windows Hands-On classes. But now many new members are looking to learn very specific skills, like Power Point, Word, Website Construction, Advanced Digital Image Manipulation, and Graphic Design. The new Education Director, Brigitte Haag, will be expanding the Lecture Hall classes offered, as well as adding a whole variety of additional Hands-On classes. Please visit the Website at to see current schedules and also future preliminary schedules.  Ron Purkhiser, the new Facilities Director, will maintain club’s considerable inventory of equipment and oversee software purchases and updates with the help of his mentor, Wolfgang Steinberger, and the Saturday morning “Techies”.
The greatest challenge for the Club now is the upcoming introduction of “Vista”, Microsoft”s new, video-intensive operating system software. As Vic Symonds explained at the November meeting, where he held a demonstration of Vista, this new software requires hardware with a lot of “horsepower” to drive it properly. This software will include Internet Explorer V7.0 featuring improved printing capability, tabbed browsing, and on-board Search Engines like Google, the Windows Desktop Search feature, and Photo Gallery.  In the Vista Ultimate Version, the Windows Media Center is incorporated as an integral part of its system.
What does this means for the Club? It means new computers will have to be built by the Club’s Techies, led by Vic Symonds and Wolfgang Steinberger, that will be able to handle the new software. It will also enable the Club to teach hands-on video editing, which is in high demand.  One prototype, a super machine, has already been built and is being thoroughly tested right now.
Another challenge facing the Club now is raising the money for these new computers, which will bring the club to the forefront of technology. Fundraisers and other activities are planned.  One way to increase income is to offer more classes to its members, including afternoon hours for those who prefer not to drive in the dark. But in order to offer more classes, more volunteer instructors are needed. Anyone with computer skills may volunteer to instruct.  
At the business meeting in November, Treasurer Lorraine Backey asked all members to consider making a holiday donation to the Computer Fund.  Since the Hernando Computer Club is a charitable organization [(501 (c) 3)], the club will gladly provide a receipt as required by the IRS.  She kicked off the Computer Fund Donation drive by presenting her check for $500 to President John Lubertowicz at the December 5th Board Meeting.


EXPO planned by the Hernando Computer Club.
On Monday, October 9, from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., the Hernando Computer Club will open its doors and invite the Public to come to see how this Club can provide an environment for learning, sharing knowledge and having computer fun. As in previous years, the members will present a variety of activities that are entertaining and informative. In the lecture hall several fifteen-minute mini-classes will be offered that let the visitor sample the various instructors and their styles, to whet the appetite for more. The strong focus is on Basic Computer Use and Basic Windows, but there will also be some fun things like slide show creation and more. On the main floor, in the meantime, will be exhibits about Digital Imaging, Creative Use of Graphics Software, Making Your Own Cards for Birthdays and other Events,  Surfing the Net, Building Your Own Computer, Digital Music Recording, Investing Basics, Digital Photography, all of which are offered throughout the year to Club members. The visitor can ask questions about the various activities in the club and get instant answers and even problem-solving suggestions.  In the refreshment area, Videos and Slide Shows, with all the bells and whistles, will be shown continuously.  These have been produced by members to showcase the fun side of the Club. There will also be door prizes.  All in all, it promises to be an interesting evening.  Come and join us at the Club’s location at the Hernando Shrine Club, 13400 Montour Street, Brooksville, FL. For directions or additional information check the club’s web site,, or phone 352-592-0070. (Brigitte Haag)


On Monday August 28 and Wednesday August 30 at 7:00 P.M., Vic Symonds, Education Director of The Hernando Computer Club, will be conducting a Training Course entitled "Microsoft PowerPoint".  PowerPoint is the primary Presentation tool used by Schools, Universities, Businesses, Industry, and the Government.  It is extremely powerful and serves as a great aid for any Presentation, Training Course, or Lecture that a person may have to give.  Each lecture will last two hours.
Along with showing one how to develop a Presentation using PowerPoint, he will also emphasize some "best practices" techniques that may help one  to get across the points that one is making.  He will also demonstrate some bad (distracting), techniques as well that will get one into trouble and cause one's  audience to walk away mumbling to themselves. 

This course is held at The Hernando County Shrine Club, 13400 Montour St., Brooksville, FL. A map is available at the Hernando Computer Club’s Web site,, or information can be obtained by calling (352) 592- 0700. Members will pay the usual lecture fee.  
We urge anyone using a computer for their business consider the Power- Point Presentation.  It is suggested that users read about the Club on the Web site and fill out the application for membership.  One might want to sponsor and encourage their employees to join the club, attend the lectures, and further improve their PowerPoint knowledge.   Members will be on hand to welcome anyone interested in joining the Club  (not only to learn PowerPoint but to take advantage of the many other educational opportunities on the Club’s schedule.)  (George Gilette)

Volunteer Breakfast at the Hernando Computer Club

John Lubertowicz, president of the Hernando Computer Club invited the Club’s volunteers for a fresh bagel breakfast, which was held the morning of July 10 at the clubhouse. There are many kinds of activities that the volunteers do to make the club work:. The Greeter, Registrar, Set-Up, and Coffee Personnel, are the largest group and perform the very important basic jobs. Then there are the technical staff taking care of the computer and equipment maintenance, further all the instructors who with enthusiasm teach there subjects on lecture and hands-on classes, facilitators of the various special interest groups and lastly the members who volunteer for the Board positions and take on responsibilities. Many of the volunteers came and enjoyed the generous breakfast donated by the president and chatted away as their job often does not allow when performing their duties. John gave an overview over the goings on of the club. In the following discussion Vic Symonds expressed the value of voluntarism and made everybody feel good about their efforts to further the good cause. Another major subject was the evaluation of the newly overhauled Web site. A computer club has resources in their teaching staff and this club has a technically advanced Web site with fun animation and plenty of information thanks to the effort of several caring volunteer specialists like Dave Curtis, Don Halloran, Ron Purkhiser, and the  Webmaster, Brigitte Haag.. The web site is Phone 352-592-0070The next upcoming event is “Excitement for your Screen” an overview of software available to create interactive animations and advanced video editing, which will be an entertaining evening. .On October 9, the public is invited to the Club’s  Free Open House which  will be held to inform the public what  a Computer Club can do for everybody. (Brigitte Haag)


Some people build castles with Lego blocks others enjoy assembling puzzles. Whether it be constructing model ships, embroidering or designing garden furniture the fascination with building and creating never ends. One member of the Hernando Computer Club, Paul Lutz, just recently experienced this satisfying feeling. With the guidance and instruction of knowledgeable and experienced Club "techies", Paul designed and built his own computer. Anticipating a "hit on his budget" Paul named the computer Armut (poverty in German) but fortunately due to rebates, bargains and careful comparison shopping for parts, this state was never attained. Armut is a very powerful machine with the latest bells and whistles. It is capable of editing hours of movies, storing thousands of pictures and playing the most elaborate games and doing just what he wants to do with it now and in the future  when modifications will be aided by his Design, Buy and Build handbooks.

Who is Paul Lutz? One might guess that he might have been a computer specialist. Actually, his careers in sales and university teaching did not expose him to any technical challenges of this nature. He tackled this project because it was a task he perceived and felt he had to do. In the process he began to understand the workings of computers and, most importantly,  he experienced the camaraderie and interaction with other computer friends. There were 16 people in the  Build Your Own Computer group, 14 of whom have completed their own custom PCs. Kathleen Back, for example, is thoroughly enjoying her own production, Ginger, whenever she boots it. And there are others such as "Ron Purkhiser who recently finished Skip, a very elaborate machine. Jim Roger has completed three. The first two ended up on the desks of his grandson and granddaughter so he then, for himself, had to build Queen. Vic Symonds, the creator and leader of the group, and facilitators Dave Curtis, Wolfgang Steinburger and John Hectus would not let Jim build the same computer three times so this very well designed computer has been another great learning experience for Jim.  

Come to the Hernando Computer Club and embark on such an adventure. It may take a few weeks or months or even a year - you set the pace, but the process is rewarding and the completion is extremely satisfying. And, when you're done you'll receive a Certificate of Completion at the General Monthly Meeting. The Computer Club is a fun place to go if you really want to learn what your computer can do for you. For a minimal investment you can join the Club and attend lecture and lab classes and also special interest groups. No computer knowledge is required. Classes range from basic to advanced. For more information call 592-0070 or visit the Club's website at  (Brigitte Haag)

Creating Slide Shows with Your PC

Did you ever spend a fortune to have a video made for a recent family event – birthday party, family reunion, vacation – with photos sliding by showing the fun, pleasant music playing the background, and a narrator explaining what’s happening? If you recently bought a computer that uses Windows XP, you will find a lovely little program in your machine called Windows Movie Maker.  This program enables everyone to create just such video footage. You might think it pretty intimidating to undertake such a venture, but this is where the Hernando Computer Club comes in handy.Almost every month the club offers a series of lecture classes called Introduction to Computer Basics.  These classes cater to people who are just getting started with computers.  This month, Jim Rogers, a senior instructor with the club, is teaching the very basics of computer use – what the mouse does, what the desktop is, how to open programs, how to organize your files in folders, etc. As a part of this class he asked fellow member, Ron Purkhiser, to give an overview of using the Windows Movie Maker video editing software. Ron has enjoyed taking photos for years and he stepped up to the plate to give a very informative demonstration.  Using pictures he had recently taken at a State Park, Ron showed how to drag photos onto the time line, add some fancy transitions from photo to photo, and add some soothing music.  It all seemed pretty easy to do.  Then he finalized his show and it was ready to go. His options?  He could e-mail it, place it onto a Web site, or simply burn a DVD that he could mail to family and friends to be played on their DVD player. The spectators gave a loud round of applause when Ron finished his presentation. They loved what they saw.

For video editing one can spend from $100 to $1,000 on software, but then again you can use this simple little program that comes with your computer. Join the Hernando Computer Club, attend the lecture classes, or sign up for the Hands-On classes in the lab.  Beginner or not, there is always something more to learn.  Anyone who enjoys a digital camera and a computer will love the club. (Brigitte Haag) For more information, contact us at 352-592-0070 or

Radiant Graphics at the Hernando Computer Club
A very special treat is this informal class session, with a program that explains how to make stunning graphics, create drawings from photos, create animation, and assemble collages of photos, fun text and clipart to dress up your stationary, your emails, your invitations and even your website, if you are ambitious. Photographs are improved, sunsets becomes brighter, shadows lighter, people look prettier... This program that instructor, Brigitte Haag, is introducing, not only makes the creation of all these graphics looks so easy, she also shows that actually it is easy. All one needs, is to be shown how to do it and this is one of the computer club’s purpose. This class has special entertaining value, because it’s so pleasurable to watch these colorful happenings. Radiant photos, colorful lettering, bright clipart is developing on the screen right in front of your eyes.
All volunteer instructors are qualified by their knowledge in the various programs. Brigitte Haag is a graphic artist whose specialization is the design of Web presentations. Originally trained as in educator with emphasis on mathematics, she has been working for many years as an artist, photographer and designer.  Her presentation is entertaining and informative.
Are you new to computers?...or are you an expert? There is always something to learn at the Hernando Computer Club.  Call  (352) 592-0070 or visit the club’s website at  for all upcoming events.
The volunteers of the Hernando Computer Club, located in the Shriner's Club Bldg., 13400 Montour St., Brooksville, are putting a lot of effort into informing and educating the general public. For the price of membership and a modest fee per lecture class, everybody can learn by watching the instructor explain the features of various programs, Popular subjects are Image Manipulation, Word Processing, Home Video Editing, and more. During Lecture classes, the instructor is working on his/her PC facing the group but focused on the monitor, while the large screen that's on the wall shows everything happening. Other special classes in our Lab introduce you to the very basics of using a computer, and many other commonly used programs, where each of five students works hands on at the club’s equipment with one or two instructors there to help.

Submitted by:
George C. Gillette
(HCC Communications Director)
Spring Hill, FL 34608
(352) 688-8738
written by Brigitte Haag

Dave Curtis recently received recognition for his extensive volunteer work for the Hernando Computer Club.

He tirelessly teaches classes, maintains computers, and seems to be always there when help is needed. He acquired his extensive knowledge and experience first by graduating from the Chubb Technical Institute (which was located within 200 feet of the base in the World Trade Center) in the Spring of 2001 after majoring in Networking Engineering and Data Communications. He also completed training in Cisco (CCNA Certified) as well as training in PIX firewall and CCNP certification course work from InterCert Technical Institute in Manhattan in 2003.In his professional career he demonstrated his varied skills. At the Consortium for Worker’s Education under contract to the NYS Department of Labor he maintained almost 2000 computers on these networks, with close to 1,000 at the main headquarters in Manhattan where he installed and configured computers on the network, migrated user accounts, performed updates and network troubleshooting, as well as solved application and computer operating system issues for his share of the thousands of computers in one of several corporate office sites.  He was also employed as a Network Administrator at the Intrepid Sea-Air-Space Museum.  Then came the call of his mother Helga Curtis, 85, a native of New York City who lives in Brooksville already for 24 years. She has a colorful work history ranging from writer to fashion designer is actively volunteering in the community. She teaches an art class for the county recreation department at Delta Woods and supports the East Hernando Library with her volunteer efforts there. So in 2004 Dave moved to Brooksville to be close to his mother. Dave today owns and operates Brooksville Computer.  He has installed and maintained network systems for many customers including various real estate firms, legal offices, medical offices, engineering firms, and such. He also provides Web hosting and Website services, a new skill he added after his customers requested support in this field as well.Dave’s outgoing personality is unusual for a network specialist, his people skill were developed early when he made his living tending and managing bars and restaurants, beginning with an assistant manager position in one of the Riese Brothers BOSS restaurants in NYC back in 1979.Volunteer work always was part of his life. When he was still living in Manhattan he performed volunteer work teaching computer skills to the blind at the Lighthouse for the Blind. Now here in Florida he has also taught computer with the Hernando Public Library system and has been asked by the director of the Hernando Library IT Department to teach at the West Hernando Library after they open their new branch library in West Hernando.  He was awarded twice last year by the Board of County Commissioners for his volunteer efforts with the Library system and with the Recreation Department working with children. Why do some people enjoy unpaid volunteer work, if they could concentrate all their effort on making money instead? He said he is trying to make a difference in the world and make himself a better human being. And then he simply finds instructing people enjoyable. Join the Computer Club there is always more to learn……. And Dave with many other volunteers will be there for you. (Brigitte Haag)