After a yearlong hiatus from programs due to the Covid-19 pandemic, Les Dames de Timberlane is back and busy! The group has had two successful events with more to come.

Les Dames de Timberlane was organized in 1969 to create social activities for the members of Timberlane Country Club, the brain child of Gretna residents, Lucille Langenbeck, Marjorie Vandervort, Beverly Carroll and Carol Roberts.  Jeanette Portervant, who was from France, named the organization. 

Timberlane Country Club, established in 1959 was the home of a beautiful golf course designed by Robert Trent Jones Jr.  In January, 2020, a resident formed taxing district, TNIBD, Timberlane Neighborhood Improvement & Beautification District, took over operations and renamed the club. Now called Timberlane Golf & Recreation, it is the only golf course located in the City of Gretna.              

Currently there are ninety members of Les Dames. Membership is open to Timberlane residents and also to ladies who would like to join, but do not live in Timberlane Estates. Non-members must be recommended by a member of Les Dames to join.

The ladies enjoy themed monthly luncheons that are hosted by the talented members of the organization. Programs over the years have ranged from self-defense for women to gardening to tours of neighborhood homes. The ladies have long supported various non-profits, as well as charity events in the community.    

Les Dames de Timberlane Officers, L to R, Recording Sect. Pepper Scheffler, President Rhonda Panepinto, Vice Pres. Joann Hebert, Corresponding Sect. Rhonda Mouton, Treasurer Sandra Banks.

Current officers of Le Dames are: President Rhonda Panepinto, Vice President Joann Hebert, Recording Secretary Pepper Scheffler, Corresponding Secretary Rhonda Mouton and Treasurer Sandra Banks. At-large Board Members include Dianne Cruze, Helen Depree, Jeanne Duhe, Kelly Foret and Gina Vendetti. 

“After a yearlong hiatus from programs due to the pandemic, Les Dames is back and has had two successful events with more to come,” Rhonda Panepinto said.                                                   

“Throughout the weekend of March 12 through 14 in 2021, we held a clothing and supplies drive to support the New Orleans Women’s and Children’s Shelter.  Our members generously collected donations that filled four SUV’s along with over $2,000 in checks and gift cards.”


The New Orleans Women & Children’s Shelter, “breaking the cycle of homelessness” is a transitional homeless shelter for families and expectant mothers that provides intensive case management services to help them become stable.                                             

As the largest shelter for homeless families in the metro area, it has served more than 3,000 women, men and children since 2007. Two-thirds of the people served are children and the shelter’s offered services go much deeper than shelter and meals. An average of 80-85% of the families that were helped there have successfully transitioned to sustainable, independent living.

Those interested in supporting this worthwhile organization can go to or text SHELTER to 269-89.

On April 9, Les Dames held its first in-person event since the pandemic shutdown, an event called “Painting on the Patio” that was co-chaired by Gina Vendetti and Sandra Banks.                          

“Well, Mother Nature saw to it that the patio part would not be possible, so the event was moved inside to the spacious Café Hope Ballroom. Tables were spaced to respect Covid-19 guidelines with only two to three ladies seated at each table,” Panepinto said.  

“Thirty member and guests had a wonderful time painting their own choice of a flower pot, a bumble bee or a lady bug. Café Hope provided delicious boxed lunches of chicken salad on a croissant with house-made chips or a charcuterie box. Gina Vendetti and Megan Russell did a fabulous job of overseeing the artists at work.            

“The ballroom was decorated in black and primary colors of yellow and red. The black mantle was decorated with red and yellow satin streamers with accents of yellow straw hats, yellow umbrellas, black lanterns, ladybugs and bumblebees. The registration table decorations matched the mantle. The tables covered in black tablecloths had centerpieces made of burlap ribbons and clay flowerpots with chalkboard table numbers. Each place was set up with the chosen art work and paint supplies. Clay flowerpots were used to hold brushes.

The Les Dames members are elated to see a “light at the end of the tunnel,” so to speak. They are so glad to feel “returning to normal” again. With the shelter drive and Painting on the Patio successfully completed, they already have fun events coming up very soon.   

A Les Dames Wine Pairing Luncheon is slated for May 14 and a Les Dames Luau, a nighttime event on June 11 will both be held at the clubhouse.

For the May 14 Wine Pairing, Café Hope Chefs Garin Siekkinen and Lennon Fitzgerald will be cooking a fabulous three-course meal and pairing each course with wine selections that are sure to please the palate.

The menu consists of:

1st Course: Grilled Avocado & Strawberry Salad with Blue Cheese, Sunflower Seeds, Balsamic Vinaigrette, paired with Santi Soave.

2nd Course: Choice of Bistro Filet with Potato Croquette, Creamed Spinach, Red Wine Jus, paired with Massolino Barbera D’Alba, or Pan Seared Drum with Grilled Squash & Zucchini, Basil Pesto, Eggplant Caponata paired with Mesa Giunco Vermentino.

3rd Course: Buttermilk Pana Cotta with Macerated Berries paired with Michel Chiarlo Moscato D’Asti.

If anyone would like more information about Les Dames de Timberlane, contact Gina Vendetti, membership Chairperson at or Rhonda Panepinto, president at