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 Our Quarterly Newsletter

PAA's Summer Newsletter - 2022

Dear Members, 

Like the burst of summer flowers, PAA is busy with many activities. In
June, the Summer Scamper ran virtually and actively. July brought an
end to the work on the Bylaws and a Board Meeting as well as much
planning for the August Garden Party and for the future of PAA. August
promises to be busy for all working on the Party as well as many already
working on the Harvest Faire set for October. 


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Ellen Smith has reported that her Bylaws Revision Committee has completed its work. She has presented it to the Board but suggested that voting by the membership be postponed until any plans or changes in auxiliary organization are complete. The Board agreed. 

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Which brings us to the ongoing discussion on a transition into a relationship with the Allied Arts Guild. You received a letter in early May from our Co-Chairs explaining this more fully. In mid-July, the Board discussed the possibilities at length and agreed that the Chairpersons (June and Ellen) should continue the discussion with AAG and that the Board would meet in September to deliberate. 

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The Summer Scamper was a resounding success! Nancy Larsson reported that our Association of Auxiliaries team made $86,328 of which $21,860 was from PAA. Thanks also go to the Westly Foundation for matching donations.
A huge thank you to all PAA members who participated in this endeavor! 

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The plans for the Summer Garden Party are in full swing. This annual event raises funds for the “Special Project” chosen each year by all the associated presidents. At the party we'll have Dr. Shreyas Vasanawala, Chief of Pediatric Radiology, speak briefly to tell us about the Special Project for this year. 

The three daughters of Marilyn Anderson have taken over food prep and have arranged a special “grazing” menu of finger food to delight us. Sarah Beetem is collecting auction items but would still like more donations. Nancy Larsson has been busy tidying up her backyard and organizing the venue and speaker. June and Ellen are helping with a multitude of other issues. 

Nancy has recruited mother and daughter teams from the local chapter of the National Charity League to help with set up and during the Party. Her husband, Peter, will play host to numerous golfing buddies and will run a putting game during the event. Two handsome sons, Clarke and Brett of member June, will serve as bartenders. This is an event that started as a simple idea and has grown over the last six or seven years into a good source of funds and a fun time each summer! 

Please help! We could use more items for the auction (gift cards to restaurants, theater tickets, and tickets to tastings or other events are especially popular)! We will have several baskets of fine foods as well as collections of wine to bid on. Please let Sarah know if you have something to offer.


For the second year, we’ll have a “Giving Tree” where donations can be made for smaller items for the Child Life department at LPCH. The “Chemo Duck” was the most popular last year. Please join us and help make this an even more festive occasion. Let Nancy know if you are coming and please bring a friend. 

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Happy Birthday! 

Belated birthday wishes to all the members we missed celebrating over the past few months. (Where does the time go?) Upcoming birthday wishes go out to Sue Moore, Sharon Brugos, Inge Crozier, Adrienne Bennett, Sally Bush and Kay Wangelin-Roudon. 

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Bears are now being donated to the Teen Van! 

Gerry’s favorite project continues! For ten years PAA has delivered bears to the children at LPCH. We have recruited junior high age children to “build bears” at BUILD-A-BEAR, Hillsdale. Monies for bears came from sales of BEAR-GRAMS and/or donations. LPCH is no longer able to receive our bears so our current recipient (since COVID), is the TEEN VAN. 

We were fortunate enough to have Dr. Arash Anoshiravani, Teen
Van Director, speak at PAA’s annual luncheon (in April at Divino’s). He told wonderful stories of how the Teen Van has continued their mission of supporting young children and extended families during COVID and how much the young sibs loved receiving a bear when they had an immuni-zation/test/treatment! Who wouldn’t love a bear to hug when you get a shot? After Dr. Anoshiravani’s talk, we received three generous checks! 

You may contribute to this very special program by sending a check to Treasurer Marilyn Anderson, earmarked “BEARS.” The next delivery will
be late August, before school starts... hopefully we'll have 8-10 bears to contribute! And we’ll deliver again in December.

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Save the Date! 

On September 20th at Ellen Smith’s, we'll have a workday to finish up things to sell at the Harvest Faire at Allied Arts in October. We need many helpers for easy tasks of filling and hand sewing closed the sachets of lavender or mulled wine spices which we hope to sell. We'll have the supplies, we just need many hands to help with these and other tasks. We can use your help regardless of your domestic arts talent! 

We have members making other things to sell including handmade velvet pumpkins, knitted pumpkins, knitted pumpkin hats, microwave bowl cozies, table runners and even cocktail napkins. 

Be sure to save Sunday, October 16th to join PAA at the Harvest Faire at Allied Arts. Remember it will be outdoors and a safe place to see friends. Come and bring a friend or neighbor! 

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Save the dates, too, for our annual Membership Tea on Wednesday, October 12th at 969 Matadero Ave., Palo Alto.


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After two years of pandemic, we brought back the Nutcracker Tea. Plan to meet us at Allied Arts on Sunday, November 20th. 

Spotlight on a Member: BJ Sorenson

The spotlight shines brightly on this PAA member! BJ Sorenson has “done it all” over the years since joining in 1963! 

BJ was born and raised in Spokane and attended Washington State where she met her husband. A Home Economics major, she was active in campus events, a member of the inaugural chapter of Delta Gamma at WSU and still displays her “Go Cougars” pillow in her apartment.


BJ was named “Elizabeth Joan,” but shortened that to “Betty Jo,” then shortened again in college when it was discovered there were already three Betty Jo’s in her dorm!


After marrying, the couple made a few stops along the way in Spokane, Portland and Kansas prior to moving to Palo Alto where husband Phil continued his education, receiving a doctorate at Stanford. Later they moved to The Sequoias where she has lived since 2001. 

In her early career, BJ was hired by Sunset Magazine to provide tours to the busloads who came to visit the beautiful new building and fantastic grounds, gardens and magazine in Menlo Park for many years. 

BJ fondly remembers her year as PAA President in l971. At board meetings, she introduced members, giving reports with a poetic rhyme! She modeled in fashion shows, participated in Christmas events at the restaurant, and at Bunny Days, Holiday Teas, and weddings; plus she was always there to help. BJ and close friend, Joan Heye, also a past president, instrumental in organizing the closing of the restaurant and keeping us going! Following her retirement at Sunset, she continued being involved, serving at the PAA restaurant on Tuesdays, even after moving to The Sequoias. By the way, she still has her flowing gardenia adorned smock!


With the help of provided transportation, BJ keeps busy and loves her apartment home in Portola Valley. Her three daughters and their families live in the area, so she keeps busy with them. They are probably already planning her 95th birthday next January! 

BJ has fond memories of her good times, hard work and very special PAA friends! Though times and our auxiliary have changed, she maintains that “our mission has not changed.” Aren’t we lucky to have her in our ranks! (Many thanks to Gerry Nelson for interviewing BJ.) 


Please send comments and suggestions to Sarah Beetem, Communications Chair,  May 2, 2022.

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summer newsletter sunflower.jpg
Dr. Anashiravani
Little Duckling
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