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Revving Up for Ms. Liberty’s Weekend

Times Staff Writer

Family and best friends will be together all over the Southland for the upcoming holiday. Frank and Luanne Wells entertain at their Trancas place; Henry and Ginny Mancini are among those invited to bring the family for the fun and fireworks. Rusty and Dan Chandler are bidding friends to come to their home for a Statue of Liberty weekend evening; the invitations are bright blue. This coming week, too, Martha and Glen Mitchel will host another in the series of dinner parties they launched in January. And Cynthia and Hal Gershman have asked friends to come in casual red, white and blue for “Red Hots and Burgers and lots of Ribs--all the goodies we have liked since we were kids.” Don’t forget to buy fresh catsup, creamy new mustard. . . .

But others are on the go, including Dr. Norman and Erlenne Sprague, who will travel to New York for Liberty Weekend. They’ll join Marion and George Scharffenberger for partying on their boat as will Charles and Mary Jane Wick and Thomas and Ruth Jones. For part of the weekend, former Ambassador Walter and Lee Annenberg and Armand and Harriet Deutsch will come aboard. Also in New York will be Glen and Gloria Holden and Liz and Eric Johnson, who will be joining the $10,000-per-person festivities on Governor’s Island when the Statue of Liberty is unveiled.

Performing Arts Center plans for Whittier College are moving along. Committee chairman and trustee Mrs. E. L. Shannon Jr. hosted a luncheon on campus to introduce Ginny Mancini, new honorary chairman of the Performing Arts Center Committee, and to reveal that $3 million in pledges (including two $1-million commitments) are in toward the goal of $8 million by Dec. 31. Tim Vreeland of Albert C. Martin and Associates, the firm that designed the center, was present, along with Whittier College President Eugene S. Mills and his wife, Dotty; trustee chairman R. Chandler Myers; committee members Mrs. Robert Woehrmann and Whittier Mayor Gene Chandler; and trustee Lee McFarland.

The Candlelight Ball Committee of the Juniors of the Social Service Auxiliary plans a luncheon July 9 in Salon I of Le Bel Age Hotel. It’s the prelude to the December ball headed by Mrs. Richard Newman. Mrs. Simon Michael Lorne is luncheon chairman.

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The sky was blue, the oaks were magnificent, the palominos were painted prettily and the rodeo was wonderful--quaint, innovative, personal. In fact, “An Afternoon in Horse Country” at Jay and Jackie McMahons’ JMJ Ranch (Jay McMahon Jackie) in Hidden Valley was about as nice a getaway afternoon as one could wish for. Guests in their Sevilles, Mercedes and Broncos parked on the range, then--in their best buckskins, Navajo belts and Stetsons--ambled down the country lane to the bleachers and the cool shade to hear Steve Kanaly of TV’s “Dallas” describe the tricks of a rodeo. It was right nice, everyone thought, for the McMahon’s neighbors to send over their best hands (sometimes themselves) to bull ride, buck, trick rope and show off their paints, Appaloosas, American saddlebreds and quarter horses.

It’s real country up there where Mike Curb and Robert Wagner have just bought ranches, where David Murdock has a magnificent spread, where Sophia Loren owns a ranch over the hill, where landholders are fearful that condos might invade Lake Sherwood and the environs, and where a gentleman’s code holds that riders from one ranch may ride through another’s ranch without asking.

On the JMJ, son Mark McMahon breeds palominos. There was lots more McMahon family on the welcoming team--Cindy and John Hall, Steve and Jamie Trewhitt, Raymond and Blake McLaughlin, Melinda and Donn Conner--and almost-family types like Eleanor and Art LaVove and their son, Timothy. And all the Angels for Autistic Children who support Angels Attic (the museum of antique dollhouses and miniatures) and the Brentwood School for Educational Therapy. Pat and John Austin of Pasadena were the first out dancing when the Floyd County Boys cut loose with the Western music. Hubie and Shirley Laugharn did a number with “Hey, Good Lookin’. “

More in the crowd were Nancy and Jerry Jensen, Maxine and Thomas Ridgway, the Robert Coryells, the Philip Fowlers, Ann Dobson, Patricia Ketchum, Janis and John Kelley, Penny and Jim Hull, Raylene and Bruce Meyer, Elizabeth Westerby-Zoda, the Wilbur Bassetts Jr., Ann Dobson, the Van Fosters, the Wayne A. Hansons, Dr. and Mrs. John Jennings, the Van Kelseys, the John A. Morgans, the Philip O’Neils, the Frank Rhodes, the Eugene F. Sheridans, the L. Porter Hendricks, and Dr. and Mrs. Harley Gunderson. Before they all headed down the road, Sunday ranchers filled up on barbecued beef, beans and ice cream.

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At the Friends of the Joffrey Ballet annual meeting Monday, the new board will step into toe shoes at the vintage Mayfair Theater in Santa Monica. Rebecca Wright, who began her career with the Joffrey, then joined the ABT as a soloist, has put together a lecture-demonstration to be presented between the desserts by Cookie Bouquet and Simmie Salembier. Among old and new board members attending will be Michael Berk, chairman; Dawn Douglas, the new chairman; and Donna Kamin, Ed Medman, Gerald Elijah, Joanne Sliteris, Dan Silver, Joyce Robinson, Stewart Woodard, Jim Waterson and Margo Ryan-Peck.


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