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Grown-Up Kids Throw a Party for the Little Ones' Museum

August 04, 1988|PAMELA MARIN | Pamela Marin is a regular contributor to Orange County Life

Minnie Mouse painted faces. Red Riding Hood's wolf growled at the girls. And Little Bo Peep--sheep-less--confessed: "I must be the tallest Little Bo Peep in history."

Make that Big Bo Peep, a.k.a. Marcia Giesler, director of development for the Children's Museum at La Habra and co-chairwoman, with Barbara Grider, of the second annual "Big Kids Party" Saturday in the back yard of Bob and Martha Fluor's Costa Mesa home.

The bash, which drew 150 guests at $50 each, raised an estimated $7,000 toward construction of a new wing on the museum, Giesler said.

Museum Director Cathy Michaels (Minnie Mouse for the night) said the planned 8,000-square-foot addition will accommodate three new galleries as well as administrative and storage areas and should be completed by early spring. As she painted hearts and stars and flowers on guests' faces, Michaels said that the museum, which was toured by more than 100,000 schoolchildren last year, needs the additional space "because we have to turn so many children away each year." Michaels said the new wing will nearly triple the museum's size.

As it happens, the Fluor manse is also the site of a new wing under construction. After handing their car keys to parking valets, guests--some in casual attire, others in the "kid klothes" suggested on the invitations--strolled up the Fluor driveway, past a front lawn covered with dirt, loose lumber and stacks of newly painted green siding.

After dining on hot dogs, hamburgers, corn on the cob and ice cream, guests competed in a Lego building competition (won by former Rams quarterback Vince Ferragamo and his tablemates with a Spanish-style mission) and played a game of musical chairs.

Cheers: Also raising money last weekend for the betterment of the next generation was the Saddleback Valley Women's Committee of the Orange County Philharmonic Society.

Sunday cocktail hour brought 250 Philophiles to the Dana Point Resort for an elegant wine-tasting dubbed "Summerfest by the Sea." For $40, guests made their choices among 29 Californian and four Italian wines, and a buffet stocked with fresh fruits and vegetables, bread, cheeses and pate.

The event's proceeds, an estimated $6,000, will benefit the Society's Youth Programs, a series of music education programs reaching about 300,000 Orange County students from second grade through high school.

Event Chairwoman Sharon Upp, her large eyes hooded by the brim of a navy straw hat, said the committee decided on a wine-tasting for its annual fund-raiser because "who doesn't like to stand around a beautiful pool overlooking the ocean and drink wine?" Upp and husband Michael enlisted their friend Rick Webster of Rolf's in Newport Beach to select the featured wines.

Sipping a Silver Oak '83 Cabernet Sauvignon, Sara Mullarkey, chairwoman of the 31 OCPS Women's Committees, characterized the Saddleback Valley group as one "that likes to roll up its sleeves and get to work."

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