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Laguna Beach

Barbara’s Column

Laguna shines when it comes to giving



Tarnished Treasures is a bright spot on the holiday calendar. 

The annual white elephant sale and luncheon hosted by the Laguna Beach Woman’s Club raises funds for the less fortunate in our community. Money from the distribution and sale of donated items, cash donations and the adoption of families in need help to make the season brighter. 

“Our Tarnished Treasures luncheon is the club’s biggest event and some would say the most fun event of the year,” said Kitty Malcolm, club president.

“This luncheon is about gathering together as club members to enjoy a tasty meal, but just as importantly ---or maybe even more importantly—it’s about giving to families and children of Laguna who might be struggling in some manner.”

Contributors included sponsors of tables: Jennifer Gulla, Joann Diver, Friends of the Laguna Beach Library and former Mayor Cheryl Kinsman, who hosted two tables. 

Kinsman, who resurrected luncheon when it lapsed a few years ago, chaired the event for at least the sixth time.

She also offered the South Laguna offices of Kinsman and Kinsman as a drop-off for donations, not to mention her own donation of paintings. 

Club property manager Doety Marks allowed her office to be used to store numerous items related to the luncheon.

Kinsman’s sons, Nicolas and Josh, were volunteered to tend bar and the Paypal checkout. Christine Dominguez also helped at the bar. 

Martha Lydick donated pens, books and a sweater pill remover.

Festival of Arts Board member Anita Mangels gave and then gave again.

“I bought back everything (seasonally decorated mugs and colorful ornaments) that Bill (McKinley) erroneously donated,” Mangels said. And she even laughed about it.  

Donated clothing, scarves, handbags, shows and other items were displayed on the stage. 

Carol Reynolds played Christmas Carols on the club piano while guests shopped, stopping only for the buffet luncheon of Gluten-free penne with vegetables, Pasta Bolognese, Chicken Farfelle and salad. Dessert and candy was served later.

Molly staffed the buffet table and Shawn Cabrie helped out in the kitchen.

“There are a lot of moving parts in putting Tarnished Treasures together, with lots of women power (and powerful women) working as teams behind the scenes,” said Malcolm. 

But Kinsman knows how to delegate. Her committee included Barbara Crane, who headed up the luncheon team and Jen Hoy and Malcolm, who arranged catering by Alessa, and Anne McGraw, who helped set up tables.  

Nancy Shurtleff and Kathleen Reddy teamed up on community service, which arranged for donations to Human Options, the Adopt a Family program and the Angel tree. 

“This year we are donating 24 sets of towels, 15 blankets and seven sets of dishes and silverware to Human Options,” said Malcolm. 

The gifts to Human Options were displayed under the tree on the club house stage. Becky Barber, who works in Kinsman’s office, created the bows that decorated the tree, along with silver angels. The angels were inscribed with the names of 13 families, including the children that Sande St. John and the school district identified for the Club’s Adopt-a-Family Program. 

Luncheon guests were urged to help fulfill the children’s gift wishes by adopting the whole family or making cash contribution. 

The club used the cash to purchase gifts on the kids’ wish list. Shurtleff and Reedy staffed the tables to provide donors with family requests or to answer questions.  

Table centerpieces created by Barbara and Peter Crane were sold for $15 each to raise more money. 

“Yes, Peter actually came to the club yesterday and worked next Barbara potting all these poinsettias,” said Malcolm. “They are worth every penny.”

And worth members’ and non-members’ time is the program titled Women and Money: Getting It and Keeping It to be presented on Jan. 16.. Admission is free.

But wait – there’s

 more. You will find advance notice of all the fun and interesting stuff for visitors or residents to do in Laguna by reading

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