October Newsletter 2023

Gallivanting with Susan

A Visit with Susan York,

The Resort’s New Activities Director


Dale Dauten

We recently got to sit down with The Resort’s new Activities Director, Susan York, and we started by asking her what free-time activities she most enjoys. She smiled and said, “I love to go gallivanting,” adding that, “I’m always out and going, always looking to try something new.”

Being lovers of language, that comment made us curious about the origins of “gallivant.” Turns out, it’s derived from half a dozen sources, but we like these two, from Old French: galer, which means “to make merry,” and galant which means “brave.” Yes, there are plenty of merry-making activities at The Resort, so many that you’d need courage to take on the task of directing them.

And while Susan admitted to being “a little nervous” about the new position, she has an impressive career behind her and, of course, all that gallivanting experience. Plus, she has a long connection to The Resort.


Bud and Rita Picker

Susan’s parents, Bud and Rita Picker, bought a place in The Resort 35 years ago. As they got older, it became a family tradition that each Fall Susan or her brother would drive their folks down from Jefferson City, Missouri, spend some time with them at The Resort, then fly back. In Spring, the trek reversed.

The trip changed last year. They still made the journey, but without Bud. “He passed away here at The Resort in 2022, at 95,” Susan told us, adding, “and he was still playing golf the week before he passed.” She went on to say, “He had been a civil engineer and a developer. And he was the most humble, ethical man you’d ever meet.” (Photo: Rita, Bud and Susan)

Susan retired from her job in Jefferson City last year after making the decision to not just drive her mom, but stay on at The Resort. When a place near Rita’s became available, Susan was ready to commit to a place of her own and bought it.


Susan grew up in Jefferson City, went to high school there, and then to Central Missouri State University. Her college days were interrupted by getting married and moving with her husband to Oceanside, California. The marriage didn’t last but did result in two sons, and eventually three grandsons. (The older of her sons got married a couple of years back and Susan shared with us a photo from that day.)

While Susan describes her career as that of “a computer geek,” she has also had non-technical careers: she had her own photography business, a designer dog clothing business, and a vacation rental business. Her hobbies include art (oil/acrylic painting), crafts and hands-on remodeling (her place at The Resort is mid-transformation), and she lit up when talking about her days doing competitive sailing. While living in Pensacola, she crewed with a sailboat racing team, and worked the foredeck manning sails including the spinnaker on the Konaloa, shown below:

As for the technology part, Susan spent much of her career working with computer hardware and software. After 10 years with the Missouri Department of Transportation, she went on to work for Cerner (now part of Oracle) out of Kansas City, Missouri, then moved to Pensacola, Florida for a few years. After moving back to Missouri to be closer to her parents, she worked as an Information Technology Manager for Sinclair Broadcast Group, then went back to the State of Missouri Department of Revenue as Senior Project Manager.

As those of us who’ve known the panicky feelings when computers go down, we weren’t surprised to learn that the computer job had been stressful, so much so that Susan’s family urged her to give it up. As she put it, “I’d never quit a job, but by the end, I was burned out on technology. Just done.” And that’s what freed her up to be at The Resort and to take on the challenge of something completely new, being Activities Director.



While most of the events at The Resort are planned long before the season starts, Susan comes in with an open mind about how Activities might evolve. She said, “The part of the job I’m most looking forward to is meeting everybody. I’m working for the residents and once most people are back, I want to have a “meet & greet” and get everyone’s thoughts and suggestions.”


We wish her smooth sailing.




We have now a decade of past issues of “The Resorter” available online. You’ll find them at theresortrvpark.com (under News & Updates). Plus, we now have a SEARCH feature that lets you find people or topics that we’ve written about.

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If you’d like to volunteer to be the subject of an article, or have someone you’d like to learn more about, please let me know.


Or, if you have photos you’ll like to share in upcoming newsletters, please send them. We recently got the “save the date” one shown below


Dale Dauten, Editor

Email: ddauten@gmail.com

Text: 480-297-6244


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