'Tis the season, and the parties are in full force. Last count for today and tonight's was more than a dozen. But there have been many, many more:
AT the Toledo Symphony Fashion Show and Holiday Luncheon at Inverness Club Tuesday, ladies scurried in to find a place - seating was runway-style, with chairs all around the stage, to see fashions from Elegant Rags. In big-city shows, folks are placing orders as they watch. But here in Toledo, ladies get a preview of the fashions and then head to the stores.
In another room ladies sipped beverages and nibbled canapes as they shopped a silent auction. The real attention-getter was the raffle of purses donated by guests - new, used, vintage, designer, and contemporary, leather and beaded, alligator, and more.
Ready for nourishment after all that shopping, the women retired to the dining room at tables centered with colorful sequined holiday gift boxes holding live plants that were sold for $20 each. Lunch was tasty - butternut squash soup, chicken Wellington, and milk-chocolate mousse with peppermint. Musical entertainment was provided by the Buenger Family of five with harp, flute, violin, and vocalists.
Chairmen Pam Bettinger and Mary Ann Kline were assisted by nearly 15 gals, including Marion Talip, who said there were 225 guests, and Trina McGivern, who reported that more than $7,000 was raised. President Zana Sandys presented a check to Kathy Carroll of the Toledo Symphony staff for $5,000 for the symphony's Children's Education Program.
THE OLD Newsboys Goodfellow Association 77th annual awards and scholarship banquet was Monday night at Gladieux Meadows. The Old Newsboys is a 100 percent charity organization with no paid staff. It's purpose is to provide children with immediate temporary assistance in emergency situations, including clothing, food, or medical attention, without administrative delay - it is not a substitute for welfare or social agencies. The group also provides scholarships to students in need and funds drug awareness programs.
The evening was packed with awards, camaraderie, and good cheer, with lifetime member Jim Tichy of WNWO-TV, Channel 24, as emcee. The invocation and benedictions were given by chaplain Bill Glisczinski, who was celebrating his 91st birthday. Other longtime members included Al Shnider, 90, scholarship chairman, and Julius "Boxey" Boxenbaum, 87.
The scholarship recipients, who were awarded $5,000, were introduced by Dave Williams. Natalie Czech of Central Catholic High School received the Ray Kest, Sr., Newspaper Scholarship, and Krista LaLonde of Woodward High School received the William Block, Sr., scholarship. Brittany Funches of Libbey High School received the Joe Gallon Scholarship, and her twin sister Briana Funches, also from Libbey, received the Paul Block, Jr., scholarship. Jessica Filzer of Cardinal Stritch High School was awarded the Al and Edna Shnider scholarship, and Amanda Lowrie of Bowsher High School received the Phil Zimmerman Scholarship. Mesherry Cooks of Woodward High School got the Howard LaFountaine scholarship, and Kaitlynn Huff also of Woodward, received the James Brennan, Sr., scholarship. New this year is the Sharon Standriff scholarship, received by Kelsey Huner of Maumee High School. The Honoree of the Year was Bob Standriff, husband of the late Mrs. Standriff. Mr. Standriff, who has given countless hours to the organization, was surprised when his whole family came for the occasion, including former Toledoan Mark Standriff, who now lives in Sacramento.
Also honored were nominees for the sportsman of the year presented by Jay Gast: Ore Fatinikun of Perrysburg High School, Aeric Clay of Bowsher High School, Donnie Dottei of Whitmer High School, Cedric Bouyer of Central Catholic High School, Cody Donald of Otsego High School, and Dane Sanzenbacher of Central Catholic High School. Dane was named sportsman of the year and was awarded a $1,000 scholarship. He will attend Ohio State University in the fall and will be on the football team.
Chairmen of the banquet were Jerry and Dortha Baum and Gary Wyse.
But the evening didn't end without a reminder from Mike Bell of Friday's paper sale as he said, "It's all about the kids!"
More than 500 volunteers will be in Toledo area grocery stores, bowling centers, shopping centers and malls, credit unions, and other retailers to hawk the organizations annual charity edition newspaper, according to president Bill Sanford, who said the goal is $230,000, the amount that was spent to assist children in need last year to provide more than 5,000 school children with coats and shoes.
The first donation to the sale was a personal check for $2,000 from Allan Block, chairman of Block Communications, Inc., and a check for $2,000 from the Paul and Dina Block Foundation.
Anyone can be a "newsie," membership knows no boundaries - one only must care about helping children in need. For more information, see the Web site, www.toledonewsboys.org, or call 419-245-1126 or 419-467-6277. Donations can be mailed to the Old Newsboys Goodfellow Association, P.O. Box 2032, Toledo, OH 43604.
THE Army-Navy football game last Saturday was a great excuse for Bob Oehlers and his wife, Ann, to host a party for his fellow West Point grads in their Greycliffe at the Quarry home.
The men watched the game in Mr. Oehlers' home theater and bar. Army lost, but they all had a good time sharing West Point stories, said Mr. Oehlers.
Among the group were Bruce and Patty Foster, Steve and Teresa Heaney, Don and Linda Hendershot, Ralph Zychowicz, and John Chapman and his wife, Vanessa. Special guests were Lt. Col. Jim Kelly and his wife, Jane. Colonel Kelly just returned two weeks ago from a year's tour in Kuwait.
BACK in town, safe and sound: After a wild experience on drive home from Florida last Saturday, Toledo builder Tom Schlachter is alive and well. Mr. Schlachter said he had stopped for gas in morthern Tennessee and got back on the road when he saw that he had a passenger - a black snake coiled up on the passenger door. He pulled off the road and opened the door, thinking the snake would fall out. Unfortunately, the snake leapt onto the dashboard and moved inside where he could not see it.
Mr. Schlachter was five miles from the next exit near the state line so he drove on, figuring if he was bitten, he had enough time to get to a hospital. In the meantime he called his son, and by coincidence a friend of his son was there and said the snake he described was a black racer and not poisonous, although it might bite if it felt threatened. It was looking for warmth, he added.
So Mr. Schlachter figured - or hoped - it would stay down near the engine. He cranked up the air conditioner to keep the snake away from him, turned on the map light and some music, hoping the snake would feel the vibrations and stay away, and drove as fast as he could. It was dark, he had to be careful not to get stopped by police, and he didn't want to make any quick moves getting out of the car, in case the snake was near.
He arrived home with a nearly empty tank of gas. That was Saturday. Sunday he left his car in a field with the windows down. Monday morning he had the car inspected and there was no sign of the snake. But Monday afternoon it appeared.
So Tuesday the dashboard was removed and a sun lamp and blanket were set out to attract the snake.
It took some time, but by Wednesday the snake was captured and taken to the Toledo Zoo.
Barbara Hendel is The Blade's society editor.
Contact her at: firstname.lastname@example.org