The Valley Line: Oakmont League busy with tea event for past presidents, fashion show and luncheon


These past two months have been busy times for members of Oakmont League of Glendale.

The first big event was the Past Presidents Tea held at the beautiful home of current club president Lydia Trout. The tea table was creatively enhanced with flower arrangements and other accouterments that make such a traditional tea lovely. Of course, the tea and coffee was served from sterling silver tea and coffee pots. The dainty foods offered were plentiful and savory.

Just last week, members and guests of the league met at Oakmont Country Club for a luncheon and a fashion show presented by Jade’s fashion boutique located in South Pasadena.

Marianne Reyes, owner of the boutique, was the delightful commentator for the fashion show that presented casual to evening wear.

League members modeling the fashions included Fernanda Genthon, Ellen Farwell, Carol Eldred, Kim Klosterman, Sharon Swinford, Nina Ratliff and Lydia Trout.

The food served that day had a very autumn flavor with a butternut ravioli dressed in a butter and sage sauce and, for dessert, a warm berry cobbler with vanilla ice cream.


Hillsides Education Center in Pasadena held its 35th anniversary open house on its Avenue 64 campus.

During the program, Hillsides President and Chief Executive Officer Joe Costa praised the school for tending not only to the students’ academic needs but their emotional and social ones.

Several Las Candelas members, including Ellyn Semler, an LCF resident and immediate past president, were in attendance. Las Candelas has been helping Hillsides for some 30 years. The group provides monthly enrichment assemblies for students, provides field trips, sponsors a monthly store as incentives for students to achieve in class, organizes a yearly academic fair, and throws a year-end pizza party for the students.


After all these years that I’ve been writing this column, you’ve probably figured out how much I love musical theater — well, all music in general!

The other night I went to the opening of “Bright Star” at the Ahmanson Theatre.

With its setting in 1940s Appalachia, with flashbacks to the 1920s, there was much for me to appreciate.

Steve Martin and Edie Bicknell wrote the book, lyrics, and the music for this play that drew me in immediately.

Martin, who has been showing off his chops on the banjo for many years, naturally wanted to feature this “old time” Appalachian music genre.

My ancestral roots are from the hills and hollows of West Virginia, where my daddy was born. My grandfather played the fiddle and most of the cousins I have met not only play fiddles, but several of them make their own instruments.

I was feeling quite at home with the music of the play — it just made my heart sing.

Before the play began I met a lovely young woman in the lobby who was wearing a superb dress made of a unique tapestry fabric.

We sat down to chat and she told me that her guitar-playing husband Eric Davis was part of the onstage orchestra. He was classically trained, but she said he was particularly loving the music in the play.

Susan Davis, my new friend, told me she too is a musician and plays the violin. She is a professor of music at a university on the East Coast.

During the intermission of the play I started chatting with my seat mates Jay and Val Davidson, whose daughter Kaitlyn is in the cast. She takes the lead in a huge production number in the second act that is dynamite!

The Davidsons came from their home in Kansas City for the weekend to watch their daughter’s opening performance. They told me they usually try to attend at least one performance of a play Kaitlyn is in. As you can well imagine, this takes them to many different states in our country.

JANE NAPIER NEELY covers the La Cañada Flintridge social scene. Email her at with news of your special event.