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On the Town: Event has all the decorum of Christmas

August 07, 2012|By Ruth Sowby | By Ruth Sowby
  • Assistance League member-volunteer Mary Margaret Smith models a mink jacket on sale for $100 at the Leagues "Christmas and Much More" sale.
Assistance League member-volunteer Mary Margaret Smith… (Courtesy of Assistance…)

It was Christmas in August at Glendale’s Assistance League chapter house. On Friday (Aug. 3) the crowds were lined up many minutes before the 10 a.m. opening for the “Christmas and Much More” sale of holiday-themed ornaments, books, cards, jewelry, fabric, crafts, formal wear and furs. Assistance League volunteer Mary Margaret Smith manned the entrance as a genial greeter, but she was willing to lay down the law if more than 20 customers stormed the gates at the same time.

Those planning well in advance, and watching their pennies at the same time, wanted to be the first to grab that perfect wreath or Christmas tree ornament. And grab they did. Assistance League volunteers had to be on their toes to make sure decorum ruled. Rita Burns was in charge of the holding area of booty while customers continued to shop. Burns was afraid the bounty on hold wasn’t safe from busy fingers wanting more.

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Christmas sale Chairman Sylvia Kowal had supervised her team of 10 volunteers for close to 60 hours while they sorted and priced more than 1,000 items collected since the beginning of the year. Then they transformed the chapter house into a winter playground for holiday shoppers. Recent Glendale resident Cecelia Walker snatched up some bargain gift-wrapping paper.

If Christmas wasn’t your thing, more goodies could be found in the league’s Thrift Alley next door. League volunteer Margaret Hammond modeled a satin wedding gown with hand beading that was on sale for $50. It was priced to move. Hammond recalled her own wedding dress she wore 64 years ago in Canada. “You had to be covered all the way down,” Hammond said. “We were encouraged to marry early and increase the population.”

By the 3 p.m. closing of the Christmas sale, hundreds of customers walked out with their hearts’ desires after paying for their merchandise through league volunteer Ann Chadney behind the cash register. Some die-hards were planning to return for the next day’s continuation of the sale.

League President Alma Tycer said sale proceeds will support the league’s philanthropic programs.

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On Saturday (Aug. 4) the Glendale Centre Theatre had the usual buses parked in front, disgorging dozens of passengers in the mood for the theater’s latest offering “On Golden Pond.” Known for its lighted-hearted musicals, the theater’s presentation of the drama is a rare but welcome offering.

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