Happily rocky, colorful time

My goodness, one more week and we will be dancing into La Cañada's big Fiesta Days party. But before the high stepping begins here in LCF, I am still savoring the joyous fun I experienced at a family retreat in Boulder, Colo.

Spring was in full bloom in this Rocky Mountain town. The fruit trees were showing off their delicate flowers of pink and white while the tulips, in vibrant colors of purple, orange and yellow, were swaying in the temperate zephyrs that wafted by.

All homeowners in the city obviously got the memo that recommended that every front yard in the city must have a beautiful display of tulips, because it was a joy to cruise the many streets of the city and admire their beautiful gardens.

The Boulder Mall also vied for the best display of tulips as these colorful flowers crowded the flower boxes in this traffic-free shopping and dining area. Last weekend the mall was jumping with activity. In the open-air market a wide array of vendors were selling almost any and every thing one could imagine. Street performers entertained the shoppers as they pantomimed, sang, danced and juggled to everybody's delight.

We couldn't have asked for more beautiful weather. After a light snow fall at the beginning of the week, as each day passed it grew warmer. Big fluffy clouds skimmed the tops of these famed mountains. Yes, we were experiencing a Rocky Mountain high of pure beauty.

Pink, in many shades, was spotlighted at the Wellness Community-Foothills annual Angel Gala held recently at the Pasadena Convention Center. The benefit, co-chaired by La Cañada Flintridge resident Lydia Valenta and Ginger Rouse, was themed "A Black, White and Pink Affair" and netted $115,000.

Beverly Rouse, director of TWC-Foothills, was extremely pleased to introduce the honorees of the evening, Dennis and Carolyn Lee of Pasadena and the Los Angeles County University of Southern California Medical Center for their contributions to the organization and the community.

The 300-plus guests were greeted by "Curly the Butler" (not a real guy) as they entered the foyer to bid on a grand selection of silent auction items ranging from VIP passes to a taping of "Chelsea Lately" to an autographed CSI television show script, to Santa Barbara sky diving. There were also many auction opportunities to dine, wine tasting and lovely fine jewelry.

Conan Nolan, KNBC-Channel 4 news reporter, served as master of ceremonies for the evening. He kicked off the live auction with a frenzied bidding war for a three-hour L.A. Harbor boat tour offered by Rosey Bell of Pasadena. This tour offer created such a stir that Rosey generously offered it again and it was auctioned twice.

Other top live auction items were a five-course gourmet dinner with paired wine from TWC-Foothills' own "Barefoot Contessas" (seven of their chefs), and a Yamaha Virago motorcycle, featured at the entrance to the convention center and available for the highest bidder to immediately drive off into the sunset.

The ballroom of the convention center sparkled in black, white and pink. The dining tables featured large glass apothecary jars filled with black, white and pink candy, small glass vases of pink gerbera daisies, flowing strands of ivy all draped in hot pink tulle with twinkling votive candles.

Omar Serrano, a 20-year-old acute lymphoblastic leukemia patient at LAC/USC from 2006 to January of this year spoke about the importance of his teen support group offered by the Wellness Community at LAC/USC.

This year's gala celebrated a milestone for the TWC-Foothills, its 20th anniversary of bringing free emotional support, education and hope to families in our community affected by cancer.

Funding for TWC-Foothills comes entirely from donations received from individuals, corporations and foundations. Some of foothills residents who attended this colorful evening included Evie and Jessie Sherod, Ronald and LydiaValenta, Mark Russakow, Dr. Malcolm and Lisa Wehrle, Jan and Vilay Matuska, Carol and Darrell Forgey, Janet and JimYukich, Susan and Rod Banks, Stephen and Jean Wright, Lee and Chloe Ross and Margaret Kaufman.

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