Cherry Blossom Festival Tickets Available

General admission to the annual Cherry Blossom Festival at Descanso Gardens is available now. Due to the overwhelming success of last year’s Cherry Blossom Festival, visitors are required to make advance online reservations for this year’s festival entry.
The festival also has been expanded to two weekends: March 4-5 and March 11-12. Tickets for the gardens’ most popular festival of the year are expected to be booked fast.
Descanso members get free admission, but also must make reservations in advance. A member preview on Friday, March 3, will allow an opportunity to skip the crowds.
Last year, a record 12,000 visitors showed up for the festival, a surge that eclipsed the previous record of just less than 10,000.
Chief Operating Officer Juliann Rooke said Descanso also set a new high last year with 1,000 new memberships over the weekend to boost membership totals to 13,000.
For more information, visit descansogardens.org.

Scouts to Honor Newest Eagles at SMCC

Boy Scouts Troop 358 of San Marino congratulates its newest Eagle Scouts: Patrick Cai, Kevin Diaz-Sevilla, Jaren Huang, Garrett Kawaguchi and Matthew Lee. Their Eagle Scout Court of Honor will take place on Sunday, Feb. 19, at 3 p.m. at the San Marino Community Church in the Fellowship Hall. Friends, family and community members are invited to attend.

Local Resident is New Executive Director of the Gay Men’s Chorus

Local resident Jonathan Weedman has been named the new executive director of the Gay Men’s Chorus of Los Angeles, the organization announced recently.

Local resident Jonathan Weedman (seated, center), the new executive director of the Gay Men’s Chorus of Los Angeles, is pictured with colleagues (seated, from left) Brianne Cohen and Kathleen Wrabley. Back: James Geiger, Taylor Hartley, Kevin Bolling, Lee Lightfoot, Gavin Thrasher and Dr. Joe Nadeau.

An ardent supporter of the arts and of LGBT equal rights advocacy, Weedman is an award-winning business leader and philanthropist who will shepherd the organization’s 270-plus choral membership, as well as work in unison with its team of board and staff members, including its board chair John Duran.
“Jonathan Weedman is admired across greater Los Angeles for his LGBT and fine arts advocacy,” said Duran. “He will lead GMCLA through our next chapters advancing LGBT equality, protecting our youth and teaching about our culture and history.”
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Friends in Deed the Big Winner in High Point’s ‘Souper Bowl’

Nathan Edgar catches the attention of drivers as they pull up to the car line.

High Point Academy’s 3rd-graders served souped-up signs at the school’s car line recently to kick off their traditional “Souper Bowl” competition. Enthusiastic participants donated cans of hearty soups in the names of their favorite Super Bowl teams as they pulled up to the school. The 3rd-graders manned tables decorated with team banners for the Patriots and the Falcons. By the end of the morning, students had collected 47 cans in the name of the Patriots and 99 in the name of the Falcons.
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Pasadena Museum of California Art Expands Free Programs

The Pasadena Museum of California Art has expanded its free monthly programming, beginning with the exhibitions “The Golden Twenties: Portraits and Figure Paintings by Joseph Kleitsch,” “Interstitial” and “Gustave Baumann in California,” on view March 5 through Aug. 6.
Building off the PMCA 123 monthly programming — which includes Free First Fridays, Second Saturday Spotlight Talks and Free Third Thursday Evenings — the expanded PMCA 1234 introduces Free Fourth Wednesday Wee-Reads and now pairs Free Third Thursday Evenings with free community programs.
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Soroptimists to Host Benefit Luncheon

Altadena-Pasadena Soroptimists members are hosting a benefit luncheon at Brookside Country Club on Saturday, March 11, for their second annual Making a Difference benefit.
With a theme of “For the Love of Women,” the event will recognize former state Sen. Carol Liu and former Pasadena Library director and Pasadena Women’s Rally organizer Jan Sanders with Legacy awards. Southern California Women’s Health Conference Founder Lena Kennedy will be honored with a Best for Women award for her leadership in the community, and will be the keynote speaker at the luncheon. Additionally, Door of Hope and the Women’s Room at Friends in Deed will receive monetary awards to honor their work in helping homeless women and families in the San Gabriel Valley.
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Connolly to Be Honored at Spiritus Dinner

Monsignor Clem Connolly

Monsignor Clem Connolly will be honored by Social Service Auxiliary of the Sisters of Social Service at a special dinner on Saturday evening, April 1.
Connolly, who served as a priest at Holy Family Church in South Pasadena for three decades, will receive the organization’s prestigious Spiritus Award.
“Monsignor Clem has dedicated his life to help the Archdiocese of Los Angeles in many ways,” said Social Service Auxiliary President Rlene Mijares de Lang. “He has spoken to many groups instilling the word of God, forgiveness, acceptance and love. When Monsignor Clem speaks, his words are listened to.” Continue reading “Connolly to Be Honored at Spiritus Dinner”

Villa Esperanza to Host Thoroughbred Race Benefit

Joan Feser enjoys lunch with her children, John, Michael and Juliana, at last year’s race day.

The Villa Esperanza Guild will hold its 19th annual Day of Thoroughbred Racing to benefit Villa Esperanza Services on Saturday, Feb. 25, at 11:30 a.m. About 200 guests will enjoy an exciting day of racing at Santa Anita Racetrack’s Club House Terrace in Arcadia to help support children and adults with disabilities.
Each year, the guild’s Race Day generates support for Villa’s Hjelte-Phillips Speech and Language Center and Adult Residential Program, two of Villa’s nine programs that help individuals with developmental disabilities gain greater independence and live more fulfilling lives.
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Kaleidoscope to Play at the Huntington on Saturday

The Kaleidoscope Chamber Orchestra will perform at Rothenberg Hall at the Huntington Library on Saturday, Feb.18, at 8 p.m. The program will feature works by Ravel and Vaughan Williams as well as a West Coast premiere of “Tonight We Tell the Secrets of the World” by Philadelphia-based composer Scott Ordway. Violinist William Hagen will be making his Kaleidoscope debut on “The Lark Ascending” by Vaughn Williams. A pre-concert lecture will be offered by KUSC announcer Brian Lauritzen starting at 7:30 p.m.
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Carver Space Pioneers to Dance Under the Stars March 4

Carver Elementary School will host its Space Pioneers Gala at the California Science Center under the space shuttle Endeavour on Saturday, March 4. Guests can bid on silent auction items while sipping a PaQui Tequila signature cocktail and enjoying the sounds of the San Marino High School Jazz Ensemble.

Carver Parent Party co-chairs Jennifer Dill-Kamal (left) and Kathryn Oliveros (right) and procurment chair Mia Martinez are planning a stellar night at the California Science Center with a dinner at the space shuttle Endeavour.

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