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 Our Quarterly Newsletter

PAA's Spring Newsletter - 2022

Dear Members,

It’s Springtime. Time again to catch up on News and Happenings at PAA.


In April, we held the first in-person luncheon and general meeting in several years.
About twenty members met at Divino’s Ristorante in Belmont for a short business
meeting and talk by Dr. Arash Anoshiravani on the Teen Van project and how it weathered the pandemic.


In April, we sent out a letter from our two co-chairs, June and Ellen, so here are some updates since then, and more details about upcoming events.


On May 11th, the two co-chairs sent out another letter concerning a possible future of our auxiliary. Please refer to it for details; it appears on the Co-Chairs Note Page.

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It’s Summer Scamper time! This event raises money specifically for the Teen Van with its mission of better health, both physical and mental, for teens and their families, especially during these troubled times. This year, the Scamper is both in person and virtual. On the LPCH website is a button where you can make a direct donation. That will make you part of the PAA “team”. If you prefer to actually “run” on June 18th, more power to you! 

Even MORE good news about Summer Scamper 2022... Here's an opportunity to DOUBLE your donation!


Thanks to a generous donation from the Westly Foundation,
your donation to the Teen Health Van will be matched dollar for dollar up to $40,000!


We only have until the end of June to fulfill this match. Don't miss this incredible opportunity to double your impact!


Summer Scamper  Saturday, June 19, 2022







During these past two years, The Teen Van Team has seen an increase in food and housing insecurity, isolation and mental and physical health concerns. The aid we provided from last year’s Scamper was used to meet the growing needs of this vulnerable community. This year, the Teen Van Team plans to both expand their services and reach even more at-risk teens and their families. 


You can "Scamper" just using your fingers! 

To join Palo Alto Auxiliary's team, please click here:


With gratitude,

The PAA Scamper Team

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On August 13th, we’ll again host the Summer Garden Party and Silent Auction.  This has become our largest fundraiser so it’s important for all our members to help out. We need items to auction! The best sellers are experiences: golf rounds, tickets to theater, musical or sporting events, vacation homes, special wines or tasting events and especially gift card to your favorite restaurant. We love to have some baskets; the best are pre-packaged and ready to go. Fancy foods and themed baskets are popular. If you want to get together with a buddy and make one basket, that works, too. Please -- no jewelry, electronics or used items unless you have crystal goblets. We’ve already received three donations, so let’s get to work finding more! Email Sarah with questions. (


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Save the dates: 

-- August 13th:  Summer Garden Party & Auction at Nancy Larsson's home

-- September 20th:  Workshop for the Holiday Faire at Ellen Smith’s home

-- October 12th:  Fall Membership Tea at 969 Matadero Avenue, Palo Alto

-- October 16th:  Holiday Faire at Allied Arts 

-- November 20th:  Nutcracker Tea at Allied Arts 

-- December 1st:  General Meeting & Lunch at Chef Chu's, Los Altos

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Our Treasurer, Marilyn Anderson, reports that generous members and other donors have allowed the auxiliary to provide good support to this year’s special project. We made a $10,000 donation in January and another
in May


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The executive committee is planning to support the Summer Scamper with a $5,000 donation,
leaving a remaining balance of roughly $7,000 in operating funds.


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Holiday Faire Workshop: 

On September 20th from 10 AM to 2 PM, Ellen Smith will hold a workshop day for finishing items for the Holiday Faire in October. We will need many hands to stuff, hand sew and package items to sell, so please plan to come and help in any way you can. If you would like to make things for the Faire, please contact Ellen. 


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New Website: 

Member Laura Schiller has been working on a new website for PAA. You just might be reading it here; happy to know you're able to check it out! 


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Spotlight on a Member: Luisa Pliska 

Since joining the Palo Alto Auxiliary in 2000, Luisa has worn many hats. She was an active Friday server and was often seen doing double duty in the kitchen. She was part of the early cookbook team (along with Joan Heye, Mary Hicks and Gail Sachs). This group of 4 flew to Nashville, Tennessee to take a 3 day “cookbook workshop”. They soli-cited recipes from the members and came up with about 365 recipes. They tested and re-tested the recipes for weeks, whittling the number of recipes down to 145. (Sounds a bit like Julia Child!) Luisa called it a “Labor of Love” and said that during this process she put on 9 lbs! She and Donna Jones made up the initial "Core Cookbook Team”. They were active in the advertising and sales of the cookbooks from 2005 on. 

Luisa served as President of PAA from 2011 through 2013. She took the lead with Packard’s Pantry Affiliate for many years, organizing teams of volunteers to pick up, deliver and pack grocery bags of food for families of patients at LPCH, a very demanding job. 

Whether Luisa was selling cookbooks, sewing with Thora’s Thimbles, making and selling holiday boutique items, working at American Girl, supporting the Teen Van, designing beautiful Italian gift baskets for the Garden Party auction or preparing her famous cherry tarts for the Annual Membership Tea, Luisa has been a very busy lady and she will always be a treasured member of Palo Alto Auxiliary! Thank you, Luisa! 

(written by Nancy Bronstein) 


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Future Newsletters: 

Volunteers Nancy Bronstein and Gerry Nelson, who wrote several editions last year, would like to continue in the future. They would like to have some response from members as to what is useful and what you’d like to see in future newsletters. I can forward any suggestions...


Sarah Beetem, PAA Communications Chair,  May, 2022 


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