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ANN CONWAY

After the All-Star Game, WIVES to Take Over

July 07, 1989

Gene Autry may be hosting the post-All Star Baseball Game party in Anaheim Stadium on Tuesday night (for players and fans in the stadium's newly opened Exhibition Hall), but there'll be a whole lot of shakin' goin' on across town. And for a good cause.

Beginning at 8 p.m., WIVES (Women Involved in Various Entertainment Sports) will host a blast at the Hyatt Regency Alicante in Garden Grove to benefit the Ronald McDonald House in Orange County, a haven for families of children with cancer.

The event marks the premier fund-raiser for WIVES, a national organization founded last year as a networking opportunity for women whose husbands compete in professional sports. "When you're playing ball, that team becomes your family," said WIVES co-founder Debra Burris, whose husband, Ray, is a rookie coach for the Milwaukee Brewers. "And as often as some of us are traded, it's hard to form friendships. You have a family for seven to nine months, and if you're traded, you lose that family and you belong to another family. We needed to find a way to keep in touch."

The bash, which is expected to raise about $50,000, was supposed to have a Las Vegas Night theme. But with the furor over Cincinnati Reds' Manager Pete Rose's alleged love of gambling, the group changed it to a carnival night. "We're going to have fun and games at booths now," Burris said. "This is our first fund-raiser. And we hope to stage fund-raisers after all future All Star Games. We didn't want to make any waves."

On the back burner: When she isn't slaving over decision-making at council meetings, Newport Beach City Councilwoman Ruthelyn Plummer is slaving over a stove, keeping the fires burning under her catering career.

"She's Newport Beach's best-kept secret," said Len Miller, presiding with Plummer over a birthday bash he tossed for his wife, Mary Ann, last week aboard their yacht.

"The business keeps me sane!" said Plummer, smiling as she hustled about the galley, placing finishing touches on dishes that included a spicy Moroccan pie and a caviar concoction that kept guests licking their fingers.

Among well-wishers on board: Ann Stern, who delighted guests with color pix of Jackie O. It seems that Stern's stepson, Rod Stern, was among those who graduated from New York University recently with John F. Kennedy Jr. "My husband, Wolf, and I were sitting right behind Jackie and her escort," Ann said. "And Wolf kept taking pictures of her. Here I was, trying to be cool, act like I see this sort of person daily , and he was hanging on the edge of his chair getting snapshots of the back of her head! In some pictures, you can see them turning around trying to see who we were." But, oh, those profiles. Jackie O still has it.

On the move: Life hasn't been a rose garden lately for socialite Claudia Mirkin, who was informed last month by a state appellate court that she must help pay the legal damages and fees--totaling perhaps $500,000--that her ex-husband incurred when he was a director of the now-bankrupt U.S. National Bank. But Mirkin, who resides in Newport Beach and Beverly Hills, is busy making the best of things.

"I'm remodeling my Beverly Hills house," she said at a recent gathering. "It once belonged to John Barrymore. It's a marvelous house, but with all of the famous people who have lived there--Barrymore, and most recently Ryan O'Neal and Farrah Fawcett--can you believe there are no closets, no washer and dryer?"

And soon, Mirkin will cool her heels in Cap Ferrat on the French Riviera. "My kids will stay with me, and then my friends will come." Among her visitors will be longtime pal Pilar Wayne, who, with daughter Aissa's court battles, has had her own share of thorns lately.

Decisions, decisions: To stay or not to stay? That's become the question for local party-goers. Should they stay until the curtain comes down on the merriment or rush away early to avoid the gridlock that has become the hallmark of valet parking?

A local socialite may have come up with a solution. She stayed until the very end of the book-signing bash staged by Round Table West at the Balboa Bay Club last week. Then, as she approached the valet--passing a multitude of foot-tapping folks who'd left early--she drew a few bills from her wallet. "Here," she said, presenting her ticket and a tip to the harried valet. "May I get my keys and my car?"

"Sure," the attendant said, gratitude written all over his face.

Waltzing over to the key-board--hung with a zillion key chains that seemed to look alike--she identified her own in seconds.

Her secret? "You buy a crazy-looking key chain like this," she whispered, swinging a ball of fur between her perfectly manicured fingers. "It saves loads of time." And stress.

Time for a fast-forward on the Filofax: On Sept. 28, Orange County Supervisor Gaddi Vasquez will host the first fund-raiser for the Nixon Library in Yorba Linda, due to be completed in the summer of 1990. With a ticket price of $150 per person, 300 guests are expected to congregate at the library site to hear a speech by Lee Atwater, chairman of the Republican National Committee, and enjoy cocktails and hors d'oeuvres. The event is being planned by the Richard Nixon Library and Birthplace Foundation. Nixon will not attend, say insiders, but he has promised to attend the library's grand opening festivities.

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