Mark and Carol Steingard: An ArrowCreek Love Story
It all began as a blind date set up by friends. Those matchmakers apparently knew what they were doing, as the couple will celebrate 60 years of marriage this June.
That couple, Mark and Carol Steingard, continue their full and rewarding life together as active members of the ArrowCreek community that they love. “We’ve made wonderful friends in ArrowCreek, and we like the views of the mountains and the city from our home,” Carol says. “There are walking trails, swimming pools, and parks with barbecues, a fitness circuit and children’s playground equipment.”
The many ArrowCreek interest groups are also something they enjoy. Carol leads the ArrowCreek Chef’s Club while Mark heads up the community’s Hiking and Snowshoeing Club. While Xena, their nine-year-old yellow lab, is welcome on the hikes, she’s not included among the Chef’s Club’s 80 members. “Xena eats the scraps left over from the club, though,” Mark says. They are also active in other regional groups and activities. Mark is quick to share a laugh about a local lunch group he enjoys known as the ROMEO Club – Retired Old Men Eating Out.
The teacher and the social-worker-turned-art-dealer
At the time of that New York City blind date on Nov. 13, 1961, Mark was a social worker and Carol was beginning her teaching career, both having grown up in the Bronx as first-generation Americans of Russian-Polish immigrant parents. They hit it off from the start and were married June 10, 1962, “without two nickels to rub together,” Mark notes.
Soon thereafter, Mark took a chance on a side-job for extra money and over time built a lucrative career as an international dealer of museum-level works of art. The unexpected career provided a good income, travel, and opportunities to meet Pablo Picasso and other renown artists. Carol, meanwhile, impacted countless students’ lives during her 34-year career as a beloved elementary school teacher before retiring in 1994.
Loving the ArrowCreek life
Their travels have taken them to Europe, Australia, South America and beyond. They’ve lived in areas throughout the country in their 59 years together – Sedona, Ariz.; Boca Raton, Fla; and Greenville, S.C. among them – often owning more than one home and splitting their time between cities for various seasons and reasons.
Family summers at Lake Tahoe connected them to Northern Nevada. Purchasing their ArrowCreek home a decade ago allowed them to maintain their connection to friends and their synagogue at Lake Tahoe, just 30 minutes away.
Mark and Carol made ArrowCreek their full-time home six years ago. With their heart for their serving others in need, they were connected with Reno’s Eddy House program for homeless and at-risk kids through the Community Foundation of Northern Nevada.
They also help provide meals to women and children at RISE (Reno Initiative for Shelter and Equality) shelter, support various needs for the Jewish community, and have a strong belief in the value of education.
“We believe in giving back and helping,” Mark says. “We always have done that wherever we’ve been.”
Making an impact through the Community Foundation
The Community Foundation helps community-minded people establish funds that have a vital, local impact. Meanwhile, the “fundholders” can receive significant financial and tax advantages from their investments.
“The Community Foundation has exposed us to a number of different needs within the community,” Mark says. “Through the Community Foundation we have gotten involved with the homeless and with helping kids who have been living on the streets. And we were involved getting the Community Foundation’s Village on Sage Street (affordable, transitional housing) on its feet.”
Their Mark and Carol Steingard Family Charitable Fund set up through the Community Foundation provides grants for first-generation college students whose families have immigrated to the United States, reflecting Mark and Carol’s background.
Giving, living with passion
As the Steingards approach that June milestone 60 years in the making, they treasure their ArrowCreek lifestyle with Xena, and of course, their frequent activities with their many friends and interest groups. They still love to travel. And they love spending time with their two grown children and their twin granddaughters – both of whom are nurse practitioners – with the addition of a new baby boy as their first great-grandchild this past November.
As for the blind date that started it all – what did they see in each then, and what has kept them thriving together all these years? “She had the same values that I had,” Mark says. “I saw that she was interested in everything that was going on, and I saw her tremendous energy level.” Carol concurs about what has made love last: “Yes, same values, and a lot of common interests.”
Six decades later, their spark, their connection, and their passion for the life they cherish in ArrowCreek, along with their deep commitment to giving back, are as strong and visible as ever.
Story by David Stipech, Director of Communications and Marketing
Photos by Chris Holloman