The group that has the most fun raising money of any nonprofit in town is the Durango Friends of the Arts. On Monday, some creative and energetic members knocked it out of the park at a Ya-Ya Sisterhood luncheon. (The name is derived, of course, from the book and movie of the same name.)
Held at the home of Cindy Cortese, whose creativity inspired everyone in the group of hostesses, it was the
true start of spring for many after being beleaguered by this heavy winter. There was a constant hum of voices
catching up, frequent bursts of laughter and beaming smiles galore.
Guests walked in to find tables holding crowns - because every Ya-Ya Sister has a bit of the diva in her. Burger King
provided the bases for the tiaras, and the ladies pasted, crafted, glued and designed about 45 crowns in every color
imaginable and using materials including feathers, ribbons, flowers, beads, fringes, cockades and garland. In some
magical way, every guest found a crown that coordinated perfectly with what she was wearing.
The whole house had lovely touches, and the tables also were fully decorated. Garlands, candles, tablecloths, placemats, strings of beads - you really had to be there to get the full effect. Walmart donated a gift card for
paper goods, including napkins that said, Live life passionately, Laugh until your belly hurts, and Love
What Cortese calls the Village people," or those who organized the fun, included Susie Amman, Penny
Haney, Karren Little, Janice Martin, Buff Rogers and Carol Treat. Peeb
Lupia not only volunteered to bartend, she arrived in a white tuxedo-like shirt and bow tie that was so perfect
for the job.
Pat Lorenzen, DFA's new president, pulled multiple duties. She provided many of the goods used to make the
crowns, took photos for me and made what she told Cortese was her altitude-adjusted fudge. Cortese misunderstood, and
told her to leave the attitude in. So everyone enjoyed Fudge with Attitude.
The menu included Martin's spinach salad with warm bacon dressing and an artichoke-and-olive rice salad; Little's
chicken and risotto salad; and Rogers' luscious fruit salad. In addition to the fudge, dessert included chocolate
cupcakes prepared by Amman and hummingbird cupcakes baked by Rogers. (Hummingbird cupcakes are made with coconut, pineapple, bananas and walnuts.)
Then it was time to enter the secret chamber." Cortese's living room had been decorated with candles and lacy cloths
thrown over the lamps to keep the lighting low. The hostesses led us in the sacred ritual, a recitation of the Ya-Ya
creed. Among other things, we promised not to change Durango's dress code; to hop over the little puddles in life;
not to whine without wine; that chocolate is an important food group; and not to be on any reality shows such as the
Housewives of La Plata County."
These ladies planted a seed of true sisterhood. Many of the women in attendance already were thinking up some more
potential Ya-Ya events.
Guests included women from every spectrum of arts lovers such as Danah Barlow, Mary Husemoller, Sally Bradley, Nancy Macho, Linda Hunn and Sandra Mapel. My fellow Anns, Annie
Simonson and Ann Huttner, were all dolled up. There were the K" girls - Kathie Bower, Karen
Midkiff and Kathy Setka; and the J"ust peachy Joanie Thomas, JoAnn Trimberger, Jane
Mercer, Jackie DiSanto, Jacky Dziubek, Jo Fusco, Joy Hess and Jamie Marquez.
Recent past DFA presidents Carol Bruno and Guyneth Zimmerman donned their crowns with aplomb.
P"erfectly lovely Pam Decker, Pat Dworkin, Pat Fichera, Patty Hain, Pam Hatten
and Phyllis Max got into the spirit. New executive director of the Durango Arts Center Sheri Rochford
Figgs enjoyed marking the occasion with these supporters of the DAC. The M"agnificent Marian Pierce was
one of my luncheon companions, and other women added to the merriment such as Mary Kay Lambert, Mary
Orsini, Marilyn Swanson and Marilee White.
Saying C" you at the next party were Courtney Haring, Carol House, Christine Monk and Cheryl
Bryant. After lots of hugs goodbye, guests exited by the bubble machine for a final fun farewell.
Have crown, will party" is my new motto. (Thanks to Susie Amman, who made it.)
I'm sad to say winter is returning for the birthdays of Linda Clarkson, Charlie Kolb, Scott
Kuhn, Rhonda Polsfut, John Stordahl, Lacy Williams, Catherine Martin, Lainey
Wilson, Jack Irby, Pat Morris, Sally Haynes, Jen Schoedler, Blake Martin, Charlie Buhl, Brian Drover, Sara Tyler, Melissa Watt, Jane Wright, John
Kessell, Jim Welch, Janice Martin and Lacy Williams.
Very special greetings go to Matt Kramer and to Elizabeth Bette" Hart on the occasion of her 85th
birthday. Feel better soon, Bette.
While I'm talking about birthdays, Maggie Gladden Zufelt is fixin' to reach her centennial on Sunday, and her
family would love for old friends to drop her a card to help her celebrate.
Zufelt, who was born in Roanoke, Va., is the last surviving child of 11 born to David K. and Vilona E. Gladden. In
1930, she married Leo Zufelt, and they raised their family on a farm in Redmesa. They were married for 65
years before his death.
Zufelt will celebrate with her five children and their spouses - Maynard and Anne Zufelt from Holbrook, Ariz.; Nathan and Shanna Zufelt from West Valley, Utah; Shirley and Don Jack from
Blanding, Utah; Shirleen and Ron Jack of Kirtland, N.M.; and Nancy and Jerry Hunt of
Logan, Utah. Zufelt also has 29 grandchildren, 72 great-grandchildren and 13 great-great-grandchildren. Make that a
Mail cards to her at 71 Andrews Lane, Providence, UT 84332.
Many happy returns of the day from me.
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Enjoying one last winter cuddle for their anniversaries before we actually slide into spring are Dave and
Barbara Larson, Bob and Jan Newlin and Geoff and Karen Overington.
In the I better start cleaning off my desk more often" category, my apologies go out to Jack and Jane
Mercer, who celebrated their 40th anniversary in November. They kicked off the celebration with 3½ months touring
Alaska with their trailer.
For information on upcoming events and fundraisers, check Local Briefs.
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