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Playhouse Auction to Benefit O.C. Homeless Families

September 28, 1997|From a Times Staff Writer

The children of Lorene and Sushil Garg can't complain they have no place to play:

The five kids have three playhouses in their Laguna Hills backyard, each with its own landscaping.

Lorene Garg estimates that she and husband Sushil, owners of a Newport Beach software company, have spent $60,000 for three fantasy playhouses in the last two years (they bought two in 1995) at Project Playhouse's annual charity auction.

And they plan to buy a fourth playhouse at this year's charity event, set for Oct. 18 at the Hard Rock Cafe at Fashion Island in Newport Beach. This playhouse will go to the family's Lake Arrowhead home, Lorene said.

If you'd like to see what has the Gargs excited, you can check out the seven one-of-a-kind, architect-designed playhouses on display near Bloomingdale's at Fashion Island until auction night.

Tickets to the playhouse auction party are $15 for adults and $5 for children younger than 12. The price includes dinner provided by the Hard Rock Cafe and entertainment.

Now in its sixth year, Project Playhouse has auctioned 49 houses for a total of $640,000. Prices have ranged from $1,800 to $27,000.

The money raised by the event goes to HomeAid Orange County, the nonprofit organization established by the Building Industry Assn. that builds and renovates shelters for the temporarily homeless, mainly families with children.

This year's playhouses, their builders and architects:

* "Aliso Viejo Bunkhouse" by the Mission Viejo Co. and William Hezmalhalch Architects: a turn-of-the-century Western bunkhouse evoking the spirit of the Old Moulton Ranch.

* "Balboa Dream House" by Irvine Apartment Communities and JBZ Dorius Architecture and Planning: a quaint beach cottage modeled after those found in early-day Newport Beach.

* "Bloomie's Country Club" by Bloomingdale's Newport Beach and Grady-O-Grady Construction and Development and JBZ Dorius Architecture: a country club just for pint-sized golfers, complete with putting green and clubhouse game room.

* "Stonebridge" by Standard Pacific and Bassenian/Lagoni Architects: a California Craftsman-style house reminiscent of the rustic mountain lodges and seaside retreats along the Northern California coast. Features a river rock entry bridge.

* "Kinder Kottage" by William Lyon Homes and Bassenian/Lagoni Architects: a mythical fantasy forest retreat where children can use their imaginations to live out their dreams.

* "Rose Garden Cottage" by Presley Homes and JBZ Dorius Architects: an old-world storybook garden cottage that invites all to stop and smell the roses and enjoy life.

* "Country Cottage" by Team HomeAid and architect Dora Taylor: a warmhearted country cottage built by volunteers from the building industry.

For more information, call (800) 512-6664.

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