March 5, 2020 RWC Luncheon A sunny March day was the setting as greeted 100 of our members and friends for a musical program. Sandi McNickle gave the thought of the day that centered on the promise of Spring. She quoted Charles Dickens: "It was one of those March Days When the sun shines hot and the wind blows cold When it is Summer in the Light and Winter in the shade"
After lunch, Sheryl Solow introduced our performers and gave some background on them. Katy Benko has a broad background and has shared the stage with Brooks & Dunn, Brad Paisley, Alan Jackson, and Toby Keith. She has performed to massive crowds at the Capital Mall and was a headliner at Birchmere. She released her first album “Float” in 2003. After a serious car accident which resulted in damage to her inner ear and Eustachian tubes, it took her 4 years to relearn how to sing. She said she was inspired by Patsy Cline and proceeded to sing Lovesick Blues and Crazy, both of which are Patsy Cline songs. Katy also sang She Used to Be Mine from Waitress. Ivy Elizabeth is from New Jersey originally and has performed in Europe, and with Rosemary Clooney and Debbie Boone. Her favorite role is that of Louise from the show “Always Patsy Cline”. She sang Almost Real from The Bridges of Madison County and then Miss Byrd from Closer Than Ever. They ended the program with two duets, In His Eyes from Jekyll and Hyde and the song For Good from Wicked. The program was beautiful and enjoyed by all. Both performers are involved with the Fauquier Community Theatre and RWC members were invited to take advantage all the opportunities offered by the Theatre to attend performances or volunteer.
Our RWC President, Elena Daly called our business meeting to order. She announced the slate of officers for 2020-2021: President – Joan Hughes Executive VP – Carol Bowen Corresponding Secretary – Sheryl Solow VP Programs – Pat Valle VP Community Service – Nancy Converse VP Fundraising – To be announced Treasurer – LaValle Ulmer Corresponding Secretaries – Florence Byrne and Heather Cohen
VP of Community Service, Nancy Converse, spoke about the Miss Ability Pageant, which allows teenage girls with special needs to perform. They wear a gown and are escorted by young men. The RWC provides a $10 gift card to each and makes gift bags which were on display in the foyer. The date is tentatively March 28th but Nancy suggested that the RWC website be checked as more details are received. She thanked the members for supporting the Haymarket Food Pantry with pancake mix and syrup. She said last month the RWC donated $360 in cash and 179 pounds of food to the pantry for which they were very thankful. She also reported that 251 stuffed animals were delivered to Novant.
VP of Fund Raising, Joan Hughes, reminded the members that Chef’s Table tickets could be purchased and said that sales are going well. Joan described the Night at the Races fund raiser scheduled for May 8 from 5:30 to 9:00 p.m. There will be Pool Noodle Races, a Mint Julep and Manhattan Bar and a Southern Style buffet. The cost of a ticket is $40 - $20 for the meal and $20 for the RWC charities. Joan said if anyone would like to help make the Noodle Horses, they should come to the clubhouse on March 11 at 2:00 p.m. There will also be an opportunity to purchase a horse – highest bidders win and get a reserved table at the event. Joan and Jane Brown conducted the monthly raffle. The seven winners were: Eileen Thompson, Donna Maynard, Arlene Nurthen, Bobbie Strigel, Florence Byrne, Wanda Crouch, and Dot Moser.
Photos by: Lee Lipscomb
February 6, 2020 RWC Luncheon It was heartwarming to see so many of our members arrive to the luncheon in their red finery bearing armloads of stuffed animals for our annual February Teddy Bear Collection for the Haymarket Medical Center. LaValle Ulmer delivered the Thought for the Day about Harriet Tubman in honor of Black History Month. She closed out her thoughts with a delightful story about a little girl named Meredith and her dog, Abbey. The story is at the end of this summary of the luncheon.
Gini Adair introduced our speaker and author, P. (Patti) O'Connell Pearson, who lead us through the often heart breaking, yet inspiring account of the Civilian Conservation Corps and the New Deal period of our history. Her books include: Fighting for the Forest: How FDR's Civilian Conservation Corps Helped Save America Fly Girls: The Daring American Women Pilots Who Helped Win WWII
Congratulations to our Dodi Myers Scholarship Fund Raffle Winners: Kay Ferguson, Barbara Bernard, Barbara Markwood, and Bobbie Strigel! Many thanks to all who continue to support this worthwhile Scholarship Program.
Meredith and Abbey Some of you may know that our 14 year old dog, Abbey, died last month (8/23). The day after she died, my 4 year old daughter Meredith was crying and talking about how much she missed Abbey. She asked if we could write a letter to God so that when Abbey got to heaven, God would recognize her. She dictated and I wrote: Dear God, Will you please take special care of our dog, Abbey? She died yesterday and is heaven. We miss her very much. We are happy that you let us have her as our dog even though she got sick. I hope that you will play with her. She likes to play with balls and swim before she got sick. I am sending some pictures of her so that when you see her in heaven you will know she is our special dog. But I really do miss her. Love, Meredith Claire P.S.: Mommy wrote the words after Mer told them to her We put that in an envelope with 2 pictures of Abbey, and addressed it to God/Heaven. We put our return address on it. Then Mer stuck some stamps on the front (because, as she said, it may take lots of stamps to get a letter all the way to heaven) and that afternoon I let her drop it into the letter box at the post office. For a few days, she would ask if God had gotten the letter yet. I told her that I thought He had. Yesterday, for Labor Day, we took the kids to Austin to a natural history museum. When we got back, there was a package wrapped in gold paper on our front porch. Curious, I went to look at it. It had a gold star card on the front and said “To: Mer” in an unfamiliar hand. Meredith took it in and opened it. Inside was a book by Mr. Rogers, When a Pet Dies. Taped to the inside front cover was the letter we had written to God, in its opened envelope (which was marked ‘Return to Sender: Insufficient address’). On the opposite page, one of the pictures of Abbey was taped under the words “For Meredith.” We turned to the back cover, and there was the other picture of Abbey, and this handwritten note on pink paper: Dear Mer, I know that you will be happy to know that Abbey arrived safely and soundly in Heaven! Having the pictures you sent to me was such a big help. I recognized Abbey right away. You know, Meredith, she isn’t sick anymore. Her spirit is here with me — just like she stays in your heart — young and running and playing. Abbey loved being your dog, you know. Since we don’t need our bodies in heaven, I don’t have any pockets! — so I can’t keep your beautiful letter. I am sending it to you with the pictures so that you will have this book to keep and remember Abbey. One of my angels is taking care of this for me. I hope the little book helps. Thank you for the beautiful letter. Thank your mother for sending it. What a wonderful mother you have! I picked her especially for you. I send my blessings every day and remember that I love you very much. By the way, I am in heaven and wherever there is love. Love, God
Photography: Gini Kelly and Lee Lipscomb
January 2, 2020 Luncheon So many friendly faces wished one another a happy new year as we met to have lunch. Some were obviously hoping for snow and wore their snow themed sweaters! Carol Wilder offered the Thought for the Day and spoke of 2020 vision and looking forward in the year ahead. We enjoyed hearing Rachel Yarnell Thompson tell us the history of The Candy Bombers, and Gail "Hal" Halvorsen during the time of the Berlin Airlift, as discussed in the book: The Candy Bombers: The Untold Story of the Berlin Airlift and America's Finest Hour, by Andrei Cherny. Rachel Y. Thompson is an author, and Marshall Historian, at the George C. Marshall International Center. She has written: Marshall: A Statesman Shaped in the Crucible of War. Ms. Thompson sent the following to our Club: I hope you will send out to your members this link to the 12 minute interview Tom Brokaw did with Hal Halverson. For one thing, one sees the 8 mm footage that Hal filmed when he first met the children in the grassy area. The ladies will enjoy the story of Hal's lifelong friendship with Mercedes Simon--the one with the white chickens. He also mentions the fact that from the letters requesting candy, some asked for something else, including one young man who wanted to be adopted by an American family--he had lost his parents in the war. As I mentioned at the end of the program, if one is feeling a bit discouraged about what's happening in the world, this interview will help restore faith. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QWbISrde2mQ
Liz Coughlin announced the members of this year's Nominating Committee: Elena Daly, Louise Worley, Joanne Burger, Glenna Toppen, and Arlene Nurthen. They will be contacting members for nominations to fill the slate of officers for election later this Spring. Congratulations to our lucky winners in the Dodi Myers Scholarship Fund Raffle: Joanne Burger, Sandy Matukaitis, Florence Byrne, Sue Reitzig, Kathie Hodum, and Carol Wilder!
Photography: Gini Kelly and Lee Lipscomb
Thank You From the 2019 Angel Giving Tree Program Committee
Thanks to YOU, the Angel Giving Tree Program was a great success again this year, We would like to thank everyone that participated in the 2019 Angel Giving Tree Program. We delivered 192children gifts, for 32families to PACE West School on December 17th.
On December 11, we delivered ten Senior Baskets 6 female baskets and four male baskets for seniors that are homebound in Prince William County. Thank you for your contribution and helping to make this program a success. The Committee had a wonderful heartwarming time preparing the gifts and delivering them.
The total number of gifts donated this year, 2019 was 212 with a value at $35.00 each with an estimated sub total value of$7,420.00, plus the colored pencils, and adult coloring books = $46.00 Total for 2019 $7,466.00. This year we had 96 children, and that is the largest number of children since we started the Angel Giving Tree Program in 2006. Each child receives two (Angel) gifts and there are two Angel gifts inside each Senior Basket.
We would not have been able to do this without your participation and generosity. We had extra help this year with a couple of members having their Bible Group help and the community helped at Happy Hour and the evening of the Chorale, December 5th.
This will bring our estimated accumulated total since 2006 to: $57,031.00 We want to thank YOU, for your heartwarming contribution to this program and it is because of your giving hearts and generosity this program has been a great success, again this year, thank YOU.
We hope you had a Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah and Happy Holiday season and we wish you a beautiful and healthy New Year in 2020 from the 2019Angel Giving Tree Program Committee
*Pat Hovan Chairperson Pat Anderson Co- Chairperson Nancy Converse VP Community Service Mary Ginty Eileen Thomsen Jean Seelig, made the bows for the Senior Baskets Brian for Rosemary Callaghan (Donation of the Angel Tree) Heather Cohen (the Angel Tree “Angel” tree skirt) Joan Hughes Joe Hughes (helped deliver the children’s gifts to Pace West School with his truck)
Terry Berger Kate Connelly Joanne Burger Nancy Downey Charlotte Keeley Connie Mayhugh Beth Magnone Joan Matochik Sandy Matukaitis Karen & Ed McConkey Alice Silbaugh Hattie Thurman Pat Valle
Holiday Home Tour 2019
Oh, what fun we had touring the six beautiful homes featured in this year's Holiday Home Tour! The weather was picture perfect and the homes were all decked out in their holiday finery. Our featured Regency homes and hosts were: Donna and Terry Maynard, Virginia Adair, Wanda Crouch, Mary and John Eichelberger, Nancy and Bob Converse, and Mary Hawkins. Thanks, too, to Doug Burroughs of the Flower Gallery for donating each of the most beautiful arrangements tailored to the hosts decor. Heartfelt thanks to all who participated by opening their beautiful homes, baking and packaging for the Sweet Shoppe, buying tasty treats, and purchasing tickets in support of our charities: Sweet Julia Grace and Boxes of Basics.
The holiday season got off to a festive start at our December Luncheon. Members dressed in red and green sparkled like the decorations that adorned our Clubhouse. Kathie Hodum's Thought for the Day centered on the holidays in a humorous and sentimental way. The main event was, of course, Doug Burroughs, owner of the Flower Gallery. Doug entertained us all as he created four absolutely beautiful arrangements.
Our lucky raffle winners were able to take them home! The Dodi Myers Scholarship Fund raffle winners were: Amelia Garcia-Marchen, Hildegard West, Cathy Sweeney, Lee Lipscomb, Sue Benjamin, Fran McGuire, Carolyn Soderberg, Joan Hughes, Sophie Burkat, and Hattie Thurman!
Photography by: Gini Kelly and Lee Lipscomb
November 7, 2019 Luncheon
It was the beginning of a blustery November day at the Regency Clubhouse as RWC members got together for a delicious lunch, charity, and an inspiring talk about tapping into our creativity.
Pat Meadows gave our Thought for the Day about the strong bond of friendship and how fortunate we are to live here at Regency where our friends, like medicine, take care of us when we are in pain.
Kerry Molina, local author, artist and entrepreneur, talked with us about her life and how it led to the opening of The Yellow Brick Road. She gave us food for thought on how we can stir our creative juices no matter the age or circumstances.
Nancy Converse gave us wonderful news about the success of the recent Coats for Kids Drive, and the Blood Drive. Thanks to our generous community, Nancy and her team were able to deliver 134 costs, 62, hats, 92 scarves, 86 pairs of gloves, and 334 pairs of socks to our local SERVE. They will keep a lot of kids warm this Winter.
Louise Worley and her team were able to collect 34 pints of blood during the recent Blood Drive. The gift of life is precious.
Nancy also announced the upcoming Holiday Food Drive. It will run from 13-20 November, 2019. Details of the Drive can be found here
Congratulations to the winners of this month's Dodi Myers Scholarship Fund Raffle. Jane Brown conducted the monthly raffle. Nancy Powell, Karen Nizialek, Jane Brown, Carole Larkin, and Carol Bowen won flower arrangements. Pat Mingione received the Fall basket from Donna Maynard, Theresa Peck won the wreath from The Flower Gallery and Joan Kelliher was the recipient of homemade jams from Mary Ginty.
Photos: Gini Kelly, Lee Lipscomb
October 3, 2019 Luncheon
We received a warm welcome from the weather and the membership as we gathered for our October luncheon. Chris Viney gave the Thought for the Day and spoke of Letting It Go. Chris began by saying with the leaves starting to change, we needed to let go of summer and continued with the wisdom that can come from learning when to let go – so we can move on. She concluded with quotes from David De Notaris, Guy Fonley, Mike Robbins and a favorite: Laugh when you can, apologize when you should, and let go of what you cannot change, anonymous. Glenna Toppen introduced our speaker, Linda Sittig, who has many years of experience as a teacher in K-12 and higher education, is a published author, and an adjunct professor at Shenandoah University. Her love of reading and commitment to family led to her career choices. She received several awards while teaching which include Virginia State Reading Teacher of the Year and International Elementary Reading Teacher of the Year. Linda writes and blogs about strong women whom history has forgotten. She began her program by telling us she is a storyteller and didn’t disappoint. She gave us the background for her first book, a historical fiction inspired by her Irish immigrant ancestors in Philadelphia in the 19th century, Cut From Strong Cloth. Her publisher suggested she write a series which led to her second book: Last Curtain Call which follows a group of miners' wives as they battle a powerful coal company in Western Maryland during 1894 and the final in the series, due out later this month, Counting Crows will dive into the sweatshops of New York City. Linda was accompanied by Jilann Brunett, co-owner of Second Chapter Books in Middleburg. Sarah Bodsford Tyndall, founder of the non-profit Boxes of Basics gave a five minute presentation about her charity explaining how they are referred to needy children by school social worker, government social services, or doctor’s offices. She brought a box with her that contained lovingly assembled seasonal wardrobe for a child. Boxes of Basics is one of the RWC charities for this year and after hearing about what they do and seeing one of the boxes, no one could doubt we choose a worthy cause to contribute to. Jane Brown conducted the monthly raffle. Eva Kendall, Erna Grzejka, Barb Zblewski and Kathy Lord won flower arrangements. Mary Scallon won the Fall basket from Donna Maynard, Florence Byrne won the wreath from The Flower Gallery and Peggy Grady was the recipient of homemade jams from Mary Ginty.
Photography: Gini Kelly and Lee Lipscomb
September 5, 2019 Luncheon Our first luncheon of the 2019-2020 season was well attended. It was good to see so many members catching up with one another after the Summer break. Don Hakenson and Eric Buckland whose topic was Mosby’s Rangers: Of Men and Fight. Both men served our country in the Army and both are authors of Civil War books. Don is a tour guide for Mosby and has several ancestors who rode with Mosby. Eric is currently President of the Stuart-Mosby Historical Society. Eric presented stories about three men, George Edward Raum, Charles Baltzell Rouss, and John Cromwell Orrick, Jr. who rode with Mosby. He talked about their lives and activities before and after their time with Mosby’s Rangers. All three were renown businessmen and had colorful lives. One was an Egyptologist; one was a merchant and philanthropist; and one was a murderer and Texas Ranger. Don talked about the Rose Hill Raid and the chasing of Pickets (men on guard duty) and fleeing Yankees. Sara Knight, founder of the Sweet Julia Grace Foundation after the death of her 12-year old daughter Grace from a very rare form of cancer, thanked us for supporting them this year. The mission of Sweet Julia Grace Foundation is to fill in the gaps, grant wishes, and meet the non-medical needs of children who are seriously ill, have special needs, or are in the midst of a medical crisis. They call the children “Raindancers” and help them to learn to “dance in the rain”. Congratulations to the winners of the Dodi Myers Scholarship Raffle: Peggy Grady, Karen Nizialek Joan Hughes, Pat Valle, Anna Chapla, and Louise Shane
Photos: Gini Kelly
June 6, 2019 Awards and Installation Dinner "Life is an open book and education helps you write a success story." This was the perfect beginning to our evening to honor our scholarship winners. After dinner, our RWC President, Elena Daly, welcomed our guests and introduced Alissa Bridges, a guidance counselor from Battlefield High School, who thanked us for providing two scholarships to Battlefield students and then introduced the two recipients – Diyonna Jackson who will pursue a career in Emergency Medical Services and Lillian Amro who will study to become a Physician’s Assistant. Our two nursing student recipients, Maria Carmela Gaila and Halima Mohamed Abdulla, were not able to attend. However, Kelly Persons, Executive Director of the NOVA Foundation and Dr. Laura Dickson, Acting Dean of Nursing at NOVA each thanked us for our generosity. Dr. Dickson read thank you letters from Maria and Halima, expressing their gratitude to us for making an investment in their futures. Nancy Converse read a letter from our Community Services VP Joanne Burger. Joanne could not attend but wanted to thank her committee, the membership, and our community for their continued support of Community Service projects under her leadership. Nancy thanked our Fundraising Committee for their efforts in raising the funds we are donating to our 2018-2019 charities. Nancy then introduced Jenni Green and Liz Bush from Alex’s Army. Jenni described Alex’s fight with cancer and how this organization began. It has raised over $340,000 for cancer research. They have recently begun a meals team to help local families. The meal team is called Love and Pickles, one of Alex’s favorite food. Feeding Friends founders, Kevin and Ann Rychlik spoke next. Feeding Friends provides a food truck to the homeless community and pass out sandwich packets assembled at a local church. They have now distributed over 25,000 meals. They have expanded to include clothing and bug spray. They consider themselves to be the Voice of the Community for the homeless. Joan Hughes had the honor of presenting each organization with a check for $9000.00. President Elena Daly began the business meeting by presenting first year board members Gini Adair and Joan Hughes with their dogwood pins and Past President, Glenna Toppen, presented Elena with her President’s pin. The board for 2019-2020 came forward and was installed. The new board members are: President – Elena Daly; Vice President – Carol Bowen; Vice President of Programs – Gini Adair; Vice President of Community Services – Nancy Converse; Vice President of Fundraising – Joan Hughes; Treasurer – LaValle Ulmer; Recording Secretaries – Glenna Toppen and Florence Byrne; Corresponding Secretary – Sheryl Solow. Included in the picture are President appointed Publicity Chair - Lee Lipscomb and By-Law Chair - Liz Coughlin. Absent are President - Elena Daly; Treasurer - LaValle Ulmer; and President appointed Membership Chair - Sandi McNickle. Elena presented gift cards to Donna Maynard and Mary Ginty for their monthly contributions to our scholarship raffles. Donna donates beautiful baskets and Mary donates delicious homemade jams. Congratulations to our June raffle winners: Bobbie Strigel, Joan Hughes, Joyce Eliassen, Kathie Hodum and Sheryl Solow!
Photos by Gini Kelly and Lee Lipscomb
Please mail correspondence to: Regency Women's Club, PO Box 145, Haymarket, VA 20168