On the Town: One hundred years of sisterhood

It's not every day that an organization with ties to Glendale celebrates its 100th anniversary. But on Wednesday, Chapter AH of the Philanthropic Educational Organization held that celebration at the Glendale home of Marilyn Butler.

About 125 members of Chapter AH, former members of AH, visitors from other chapters and guests were ready to party — albeit in a lady-like way. An afternoon tea with tea sandwiches and sweets satisfied the palate.

Co-Presidents Jan Ashford and Betty Swift welcomed their audience. Leni Richardson, in charge of Reciprocity, was next in command, having reached out to other PEO chapters to join AH members in their celebration.

Among the revelers from Glendale were Judy Ritchie, Mary Margaret Smith, Peggy Cooley, Diane Johnson and Jeri Benton, with her guest Monica Sierra. Those with famous husbands included Sally Perkins, wife of former Glendale Mayor Jim Perkins, who was recognized at the recent Mayor's Prayer Breakfast. Also present was Valery Moorhead, widow of the late U.S. Congressman Carlos Moorhead.

Clara Mae Tronowsky was also present, having been a member of PEO for 67 years. AH Chapter Past President Anna Brewer brought daughters La Crescenta resident Cindy Kenyon, and Kathy Perasso from La Cañada Flintridge.

PEO was founded on Jan. 21, 1869 at Iowa Wesleyan College in Mt. Pleasant, Iowa.

AH Chapter was begun in 1912 by 12 women, and now has grown to 58. The original 12 friends were initiated at the home of Sala Logan. This new chapter was originally called “Chapter AH, Tropico.” Chapter AH became the first to assist the Red Cross and other local calls for help in times of emergencies. Soon AH became known as the “Mother-Daughter Chapter.” Later it became a “Mother-Daughter-Granddaughter-Great Granddaughter Chapter.”

The PEO financial obligation is primarily the Education Fund. Members sponsor girls who need loans from the financial fund to further their educations. The financial obligation of members to the fund is through dues.

The rafters were raised at the Castaway over the weekend. On Friday (Mar. 23) the 38th Annual Big Strike Auction was presented by the Verdugo Hills Council of Boy Scouts of America. The fun began with a plethora of silent-auction items. But bidders had to be fast. The auction tables closed three at a time. Unique auction items, not usually seen at auctions, were two $250 gift certificates from Allied Waste Services. That's one year of free residential trash and recycling service in La Crescenta. The certificates were snapped up early in the evening.

Dinner salads quickly followed. Master of Ceremonies actor producer Clint Howard introduced Verdugo Hills Council president Dennis Barlow who, in turn, welcomed his audience of more than 300 supporters. He also introduced Event Co-Chairs Bob and Dorothy Black, who reminded all that this year's auction theme was “Changing the World One Scout at a Time.” This year 74 scouts attained the rank of Eagle Scout. The flag presentation was led by Eagle Scout Kevin Beebe and his honor guard.

But it was the live auction with auctioneer Sundar Ramani that the big spenders were looking forward to. The usual puppy with a big aw-w-w factor was trotted out for bidding. This year, Sunny was a 9-week-old female golden retriever. Joyce and Joe Ayvasi fell in love. Is another puppy in their future?

The evening ended with the retiring of the colors and taps played by Eagle Scout Austin Ross.

According to Assistant Scout Executive Steve Smith, the silent auction alone brought in $18,000. Total expected proceeds will be $90,000 to $100,000. An added bonus of $150,000 was donated by the late Joe Carnahan via his Charitable Remainder Trust.

RUTH SOWBY may be reached at ruthasowby@gmail.com.

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