Ann Q. Peters
The new gazebo in Plaza Park is really coming along, thanks in large part to Jim Fletcher and crew from Devincenzi Concrete, Castle Concrete Pumping, and West Coast Reinforcing. On Friday, May 23, they were hard at work pouring the concrete floor. According to the Sonoma County Regional Parks Foundation, next up will be the stairs, flatwork, and completion of the columns. It's going to be a wonderful addition to our beautiful park.
On May 17, Joe and Monica Hansen of Green Acres Manor hosted their 4th Annual Charity Wine Event benefit for the North Bay Alzheimer's Association of Sonoma County. Past and present families of Green Acres Manor residents joined family and friends of Joe and Monica to celebrate wine, tell stories, and enjoy a beautiful afternoon. The numerous wineries and winemaking friends included Landmark, Naked Wines, St. Francis, Domaine Carneros, Artesa, Lando Wines, Kokumi Wines, Shane Wines, LaFollette, Zepaltas, Lindley, Kosta Browne, Bevin Cellars, Switchback Ridge, R2, Kanzler, Breathless Wines, and Schug. Joe reported, “Through everyone's help and support, we were able to raise over $10,000 for the Alzheimer's Association.”
Lights, Camera, Auction (LCA) was also on May 17, and as usual there were some generous bidders at the party. The auction netted $85,000 for Kenwood School. Laura Stolkin, Chairwoman of LCA along with Rosemarie Ramponi, noted that a cake baked by Michelle Sand, which historically has sold for anywhere from $300 to $600, went for a whopping $1,600. In fact, for the most part, all of the items did extremely well. The theme was Mamma Mia! (the movie), which made for a fun atmosphere with Abba music. This year's “Fund a Need” was for art and music and generated $17,000. The Golden Paddle award went to Tony and Cheryl Ghisla. This is only the second year for this particular honor, which last year went to Keith Kunde. Jon Reiter was also recognized for his generosity, as well as for surviving his second attempt at Mt. Everest and all the ensuing events.
From left: Lisa Clawson with LCA chairwomen, Rosemarie Ramponi and Laura Stolkin.
St. Patrick’s nonagenarians. Front row, L to R: Bea Biggs, Joe Lester, Laurie Raess, Doris Dill, Josie Ross, John Brigham, Brycie Brigham. Back row: Margaret Sommer, Cliff Kent, Bobette Watson, Barbara Jones, Connie van Loben Sels, Janet O’Neill, Bette Leedom, Jini Bauer, Mary Krzywicki. Photo by Barbara McChesney
St. Patrick's Episcopal Church held its 4th annual Spring Fling on April 29. The party celebrates the nonagenarians in the congregation, and this year about 16 people age 90 and up were honored. They were given rides in a Model T provided by Rich Randolph and an antique hot rod provided by Chuck Wood. The Old Fogies string trio played music. Tea, sandwiches, and cupcakes were served, and toasts were offered with Kenwood sparkling wine. Honorees took home splits so they could continue the celebration at home. According to Sarah Phillips, one of the organizers, the temperature was in the 90s but nothing could suppress the joy of partying for these hardy survivors. She describes them as joyful, peaceful, fun-loving party animals!
Congratulations to Valerie Hulsey, a member of the Rotary Club of the Valley of the Moon and assistant district governor for Rotary District 5130, which includes Rotary clubs from here up to the Oregon border. Valerie was named Rotarian of the Year at the District conference last month, and she certainly deserves this distinction for all her hard work over the past year. Among other things, she was instrumental in organizing the district's training assembly and the annual conference, paid numerous visits to the four clubs she oversaw, and was always available for advice and to answer questions. Yay, Valerie!
Joseph Gruchawka can add “Esquire” to his name, as he was graduated from the University of Colorado Law School (Colorado Law) in Boulder in May. He is now studying for the California bar exam at the end of July…so much fun. Congratulations, Joseph!
Alexandra Shier Perry, daughter of Kathleen Parks Perry, was graduated with a BFA in Set Design from the California Institute of the Arts (CalArts) in Valencia on May 17, along with an amazing class of 480 talented students. Art school graduations aren't the usual run of cap and gown conformity, and the commencement speaker was none other than Glen Ellenite John Lasseter, a graduate of the first class of the Walt Disney-endowed School of Animation at CalArts. John told the graduates to be true to their own styles and to look to their friends for lifelong inspiration and support, something he shared with his class - one of whom was Tim Burton. Graduation was followed by a roaring on-campus party featuring one of the best salsa bands in the country, CalArts' Herb Alpert School of Music band.
Elizabeth Peters, daughter of yours truly and our fearless editor Alec Peters, was graduated from Washington University in St. Louis on May 16. Elizabeth is the third and last of the Peters kids to finish college, and we couldn't be happier!
She has a BA in Anthropology and a BA in International and Area studies, and has just moved back to California to look for a job, so good luck with that, Elizabeth!
To follow up on Liam Kolling's trip to the State Speech and Debate finals, unfortunately neither Sonoma Academy team was able to take home the title this year, as the competition was stiff, but it was still a huge honor to make it that far and all the kids walked away feeling accomplished and proud.
Meanwhile, Liam's sister Elizabeth Kolling, a freshman at Sonoma Academy, won third place in the sports feature category of the 65th Annual Redwood Empire Excellence in Journalism Contest, sponsored by the Press Democrat. Kolling wrote her winning piece, “The Story of One Freshman and Her Horse,” about fellow student Hannah Feldman and her success in showing Arabian horses. Well done, Elizabeth!
Carol Barker and Lois Schulze took their mother Lillian Schulze on a 15-day Panama Canal cruise aboard the Island Princess last November. Ports of call were Fort Lauderdale to Aruba to Cartagena to Panama Canal, Panama Canal/Fuerte Amador to Puntarenas to Puerto Chiapas to Los Angeles. Lois says they had a wonderful time with their mother who turned 90 in May and still plans on cruising!
(L to R) Carol Barker, Lillian and Lois Schulze of Kenwood at the port of Puerto Chiapas, Mexico.
Andrea Chappell spent three months working at the BNC Hostel in Barcelona this winter, and was visited by her sister Dana in March, during the last two weeks of her stay in Spain. The sisters toured Spain and Portugal, and sent us this picture from Lisbon. Welcome home, Andrea!
Andrea (left) and Dana Chappell in Lisbon, Portugal.
It's graduation time, obviously, so please send us your college or high school graduation news, including photos if you have them, and let us know what your plans are. The high school graduation news will be published in our June 15 issue, so please let us know by June 10. It's easy to do; just email email@example.com, stop by the office, or call 833-5155 and chat me up! - AQP