The setting was the elegant Westridge home of Don and Cheri Fleming on Wednesday evening as the 2008 Man and Woman of the Year Nominees were announced. And if the magic dust from doing good works could rub off, then anyone brushing through that august crowd could then walk directly through the Pearly Gates without setting off the alarm - such was the caliber of those present. First there were the 23 nominees themselves, being recognized for volunteerism above and beyond the call. Then there were the members of the Man and Woman of the Year Committee, all past award winners ...
There's a sign, of course. If you're looking, it tells you where to turn up the hill to find Trumbo's Welcome Home. But it's nothing much to catch the attention of those who are not looking, as their cars flash past on the lonely reaches of Sierra Highway in far-Canyon Country.
However, for those lucky few who were looking - for love, a home and their own place in the world - that sign pointed the way for more than 40 years.
For more than 40 years, Saugus resident Hjordis Bakke has watched the Santa Clarita Valley grow up. In fact, you could almost say she's raised it. In those years, she's raised her own children, of course, but also provided licensed, in-home childcare to successive generations of other children. In fact, at times, she has cared for the children of folks she cared for when they were young.
"In 1981 I thought, 'I'm going to write a play,'" said Mark McQuown. "I wrote 'P.J.' in 18 straight hours."
This past January - a mere 26 years later - the movie that resulted from that play won the Bronze Medal in the Feature Films Category for Artistic Excellence at the Park City Film and Music Festival. Among others, the cast included John Heard in the lead, plus Howard Nash, Vincent Pastore, Patricia Rae, Hallie Kate Eisenberg, Glynnis O'Connor, Eddie Malavarca and Robert Picardo.
Repertory East Playhouse: "W;t"
You all know him as Captain Merrill Stubing from the "Love Boat" television show, which aired from 1977 to 1986. And though you'd say "Oh yeah" and "That's right" when someone lists all the other TV shows and movies he's famous for (remember Murray on the Mary Tyler Moore Show?), the "Love Boat" will forever be Gavin MacLeod's biggest claim to fame. And these days he doesn't mind a bit. In fact, that role launched a side career for him as the "ambassador" for Princess Cruises.
Last night Valencia Acura hosted the kickoff party of the fourth annual Santa Clarita Arthritis Walk, which will take place on Sunday, April 27. This is the Arthritis Foundation's annual local event to raise awareness and funds to fight arthritis, which affects 46 million men, women and children in the U.S. - and those are just the ones who have been diagnosed.
"Wayne is one of those people who does the right things for the right reasons," said Dianne Van Hook, College of the Canyons superintendent-president. She made that statement about Wayne Crawford at the 2008 Silver Spur Award for Community Service celebration held last Saturday night at the Globe Theatre at Universal Studios Hollywood. The celebration was hosted by the College of the Canyons Foundation Board of Directors, who honored Crawford with the award in recognition of his many years of devoted service to Santa Clarita Valley non-profit groups and service agencies.
A Deserving Recipient
A traditional Ukrainian custom at Easter is exchanging highly ornamental Easter eggs, called "pysanky" (from the Ukrainian word "pysaty," which means to write). The Ukrainians bring their pysanky and other traditional food delicacies in baskets to church for blessing and thanksgiving prayers. Then these baskets are exchanged with family and friends during festive banquets - with the customary greeting "Christ is risen."
Jim Ozasky would like to remind local seniors - and anyone else - that, to receive your tax rebate from the economic stimulus plan, you must file a 2007 federal income tax return. Even for people who don't usually need to file, this can mean an extra $300 coming in. For those who normally need to file, it can be significantly more.
It was Viva Las Vegas, baby, at the Hyatt Valencia Saturday night, as the annual Celebrity Waiter Dinner gave a number of our local notables the opportunity to serve, and the rest of the lively crowd the opportunity to party and exercise their alter-egos. The variety of takes on the Las Vegas theme ranged from a table full of Elvis-es to female-impersonation to the Renaissance. Anything worked as it was all for fun and a good cause - raising money for the Respite Adult Day Care at the SCV Senior Center.
When it comes to the blues, Teresa James isn't fresh off the boat. But then, again, she actually is. With nearly her whole life spent in music, including the blues and country, Teresa James and her band, The Rhythm Tramps, have just returned from another successful tour on Delbert McClinton's Sandy Beaches Blues Cruise.
On Sunday, there weren't enough seats to go around at the SCV Senior Center when the classic Buster Keaton silent film "The General" was shown. But that had more to do with the music than the movie, as Bob Mitchell, 95, the last living organist/pianist from the silent movie era, offered the accompaniment to an enthusiastic crowd of seniors and others.
It's no secret that, as we get older, it gets harder and harder to get around. For those seniors with health issues, this is even more the case. Now consider those seniors with health issues - and vision problems. Traveling to an out-of-the-SCV vision center for needed services becomes an overwhelming task for them.
"I first started tracing my genealogy. I was intrigued about what my family was doing in Germany. I found it was a heartbreaking story - that no one is telling - about the millions of people of other nationalities, besides the Jews," said Olga Kaczmar.