A Piano, Christmas Trees, Christmas Cards, And Snow
Catch the Holiday Spirit! Join your Way Out West friends at The Mayflower Club on Tuesday night, December 11th. Also, If you're curious as to how the headline above relates to our meeting, please read on.
A PIANO: To start off our December meeting, we will have something that we haven't had in a long time. That something is someone to play the Mayflower piano. I am pleased to announce that Doug George, one of our newest members, has kindly offered to play Laurel & Hardy music at our December meeting. Doug is also practicing some Christmas music to play too. Doug will begin playing around 7:00 p.m. (so come a little early), and he will also play during our two breaks.
CHRISTMAS TREES: Our film program for the evening will start with a screening of Big Business (1929). This silent Laurel & Hardy classic short was voted into the National Film Registry in 1992 and is a testament on how to NOT sell Christmas Trees door to door. James Finlayson is also in the film, as the Boys most unwilling customer.
CHRISTMAS CARDS: Next we will screen another Laurel & Hardy short, The Fixer Uppers (1935). While again selling door to door, but this time Christmas cards, the Boys meet a woman (Mae Busch) who seems upset. She explains that she feels that her husband (Charles Middleton) has been neglecting her, and if only she could make him jealous, he would pay more attention to her. Ollie offers to help her.
SNOW: Our final film for the evening, The Bohemian Girl (1936), is a Laurel & Hardy comedy feature loosely based on a 1853 opera. In this period piece, Stan and Ollie are gypsies who raise a little girl (Darla Hood), after Ollie's wife (Mae Busch) leaves him. What Ollie and Stan don't know is that the little girl was kidnapped by their fellow gypsies from her father, Count Arnheim, a rich landowner. Years later, on a snowy Winter's night, the gypsies return to Count Arnheim's land. Though the plot of this film may seem a little dark, the film is full of great Laurel & Hardy bits and scenes.
The Mayflower Club is located in North Hollywood at 11110 Victory Boulevard. We open the doors at 6:30 p.m. and our meeting starts at 7:15 p.m. "Fisher Franks" (100% beef hot dogs) and your choice of chips will be sold from The Mayflower Club Kitchen. Refreshments will also be sold from The Mayflower Bar. Free cake will be served at our second break. Don't miss out on all of the fun, join us at The Mayflower Club on Tuesday, December 11th.
To all our members: Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays, and thank you for all your great support and turnout for all our Tent activities in 2012. May 2013 be a great New Year for you and all your families!
Canned Goods For Maude Booth Family Center
For many years during the Christmas season, our members have donated canned goods to the Maude Booth Family Center of North Hollywood. Again this year, we are asking our members to bring one or more cans of food to our December meeting to donate. In lieu of canned goods, we will also accept cash donations. Every little bit helps, even if it's just one can or a couple of dollars. Thank you for you continued generosity! For those who would normally pay a door charge, you will receive FREE ADMISSION if you make a donation.
Mail In Your Dues For 2013
Our Board has decided to encourage members to mail their dues payment for 2013 directly to Lori. That way our check-in line for our first two 2013 meetings will move much faster. Our dues for 2013 are unchanged from 2012. Please make your checks out to Sons of the Desert and mail to Lori McCaffery, 4313 Woodland Avenue, Burbank, CA 91505. All members who mail in their 2013 dues will receive a post card that you may exchange at a future meeting for any style bumper sticker we have at the sales table.
I'm sorry to announce that Peggy Ahearn passed away on October 24th at the age of 95. Peggy along with her surviving sister, Lassie, appeared in eight silent Our Gang films for Hal Roach. They also toured together in Vaudeville with a song-and-dance act through the '30s. Peggy along with Lassie, attended many Way Out West Tent meetings and banquets and always showed her good sense of humor when she spoke about her life. We will miss her.
Sadly we announce the passing of dear friend Elaine Smith, of the New York Founding Tent and Long Island March of the Wooden Soldiers Tent. Along with husband Dwain, Elaine was a regular at International Conventions and attended our tent's 30th Anniversary Celebration. Elaine always had a smile for you and loved to sit and visit. Elaine spent much time with her family, her church, and helping others. We will certainly miss her, but remember all the good times we shared.
Notes From Our August Meeting
At our August meeting we screened Should Married Men Go Home, Blotto, and Pack Up Your Troubles. Each of the films had been screened at our meetings many times over the years, but this time to fight off "the dogs days of summer", we screened each film in a little different way or different version. Should Married Men Go Home was preceded by George Mann's "home movie" that he filmed on location while the Laurel & Hardy film was being filmed. The Blotto that we screened was the film's Spanish version, La Vida Nocturna, with its complete original music score and with full English subtitles. To top off our film program for the meeting, our version of Pack Up Your Troubles included the restored scenes that were censored in the 1940's.
Notes From Our Special Event in October
With a theme of "Honolulu Baby" in mind, we began our Special Event with a Hawaiian meal of barbecued chicken, rice, cole slaw, and a slice of pineapple. Our entertainment for the evening opened with a rare T. Marvin Hatley video interview from the 1980's. In this Earl Kress interview, Marvin demonstrated how he came up with The KuKu Song and then he sang Honolulu Baby accompanied by himself on the piano. To commemorate our Tent's 45th anniversary, we next screened Jimmy Wiley III's documentary that included comments from our Grand Vizier, Lori McCaffery and all of our Tent's Grand Sheiks, past to present. After the video, Debbie Hopkins did a comedy skit with Dorothy and Richard Schneidmiller. Then we had a wonderful performance by Joan Enguita, who sang a Hawaiian song while playing a ukulele and doing a Hawaiian dance. Then our entertainment program went really "south," when I and Bob Duncan attempted to lead our members in singing "Honolulu Baby," while each of us used one hand to hold up our small size grass skirts and then with our other hand we did hula motions. After cake was served, we had a raffle, and then Sons of the Desert was screened.
Thanks to Jayne Barnhart, Lori McCaffery, Colin McCaffery, Bob Duncan, Bob Satterfield, David Rodriguez, Ellen Wiley, Jimmy Wiley III, and Kris Wiley for all you did for our Special Event. Thanks to Debbie Hopkins,Tom Hopkins, Dorothy Schneidmiller, and Richard Schneidmiller for all your great decorations for our Special Event. Also, thanks to Bob Duncan, James Romero, and Bill Burgess for helping me with the Song and Toasts. To see photos taken by Colin McCaffery at our Special Event, click here.