Monthly Archives: October 2012

The Pilchuck Gala Auction and Friends

The Pilchuck Gala Auction and Friends

Jimmy Barrier, Joan Stonecipher, Ken Hatch

Last weekend, we were so pleased to have the opportunity to see Joan Stonecipher while she was in town visiting and to attend the Pilchuck Gala Auction.  We were invited to an intimate dinner party at Penny & Mick Thackery’s home on Queen Anne where Penny, Mick, Joan, Ken and I had the time to talk and catch up with what is going on in all of our lives.  Mick was the chef extraordinaire and his dinner was impressive!

Ken & Cathi Hatch, Walter & Esther Schoenfeld

And then just a couple of nights later, we all attended the Pilchuck Gala Auction.  As we arrived, we ran into our good friends, Esther & Walter Schoenfeld  and had our arrival photo taken together.

During the cocktail party part of the evening, we had fun catching up with Stacy & Greg Lill, Carl & Renee Behnke, Ian MacNeil, Christi Wallace, Leslie & Dale Chihuly, Duell Fisher, Dana Reid & Larry Hitchon, Mitzi & John Morris, Joe Whinney, Carole Ellison, Susan Taylor, Bob Cremin, Eliza Flug, Alicia & Michael Hatch and many more.

Cathi Hatch, Dale Chihuly, Ken Hatch

When we sat down for dinner, we were seated at Patty & Jimmy Barrier’s table along with the Schoenfelds and the Behnkes.  The table right next to us included Joan Stonecipher and Penny & Mick Thackery

Patty brought a roll of dimes for everyone at the table and we played a fun betting game throughout the auction trying to guess if each item would be auctioned off for more, less or the exact catalog value.  Since Ken and I generally placed our bets entirely opposite from one another, we merely hedged each other’s bets and I couldn’t tell at the end of the evening if we had actually won, lost or merely broken even!?

Duell Fisher, Renee Behnke, Cathi Hatch

Ken attempting to remove Dana’s boot.


As we were leaving and walked by Dana Reid’s table, Ken couldn’t resist misbehaving by trying to remove Dana’s boot to use as a wine glass as he had done at a ZINO Society holiday event a couple of years ago.  But Dana was able to keep her boot firmly on her foot and I was able to safely lead him out to our car.

It was a high energy and fun evening and the art was spectacular!

Apple Fest- 2012!

Apple Fest- 2012!

Our hostess, Nancy Strom with her sister, Sharon, and
Penny & Mick Thackery preparing the apples.

Yesterday, Ken and I drove to Carnation for the annual Apple Fest party at friends Nancy & Van Strom’s home. When we arrived, Suzy & Moe Krabbe and friends were up in the Cherry picker (probably should be called an “apple picker” instead) picking apples from some of the trees in the orchard. Everyone had brought extra apples just in case the trees didn’t produce enough fruit this year, but altogether we had LOTS of apples.

Dave Syferd and our host, Van Strom feed the apple press.

Penny & Mick Thackery took on the job of washing the applies prior to them going to the apple press to be juiced. There were apples everywhere including in the big bathtub next to the sorting and washing station. From there, the apples were carried to the pressing station where Michael Nielsen, Dave Syferd, Bob Cremin, Moe Krabbe, Van Strom, Peggy Swistak and Susan Taylor took turns working as a team to press and juice the apples. The men pressed the apples while Peggy and Susan collected the apple juice that ran off into the trough in pitchers which Carole Ellison then poured into the collection of clean plastic containers that had been saved for just that purpose. Of course everyone else drank the fresh apple juice spiked with a little rum and cheered on the workers!

Michael Nielsen, Susan Taylor collecting the apple juice.

Molly, the Strom’s high-energy black labrador, demanded to have a stick or ball thrown for her throughout the entire party. We all lost interest from repeated throwing, but she never did. She was just as excited at the end of the party as she was at the beginning.

Trudi Syferd, Susan Neumann, Sue Rsachella

Following the apple duties, everyone retired to the covered wrap-around porch where Nancy had set up six beautiful tables and people were divided into groups of six or eight. We were very pleased to be seated with Carol & Spike Anderson, Trudi & Dave Syferd and Carole Ellison and Bob Cremin. Our group only whined a little when we were told that we had to wait until last to go through the buffet line. There we were, seated at the table closest to the buffet and were forced to merely watch as the other tables of guests preceeded us to the buffet each coming out with groaning plates of food. Thankfully, there was still some food left when it was finally our turn, though we had to be very careful to share the seven remaining carrots!

Tom Raschella, Michael Swistak, Tula Holmes
Diane Kuenster, Cathi Hatch, Nancy Strom, Susan Neumann

We were especially concerned, because we know what a great cook Nancy is, having attended this fun dinner in previous years. Each year the menu is similar, but just a little bit different. This year, Nancy prepared a fall feast featuring her incredible sauerkraut, au gratin potatoes, brown sugared carrots, bratwurst, sausages, pulled pork and tossed green salad. And as a guest gift for each couple, we received a jar of honey, jalapeno jelly or chutney that Nancy and Van had prepared.

Dessert was courtesy of Trudi Syferd, who brought freshly baked gingerbread and served it with a warm, homemade lemon sauce and a dollop of whipped cream. There was also a delicious berry pie that someone else had brought. A piece was shared with our table and we each had a bite, though I think the piece of pie stopped when it came to Ken and was not seen again!

Additional Apple Fest celebrants included Arlene Wright, Sandie & Tim Preselaar, Jan Rogers, Denise Nielsen, Kathie Price, Leena & Mel Sturman, and Gordon Kuenster.

All in all, it was a wonderful, fantastic day and evening.  Thank you so much, Nancy & Van for another fun and memorable Apple Fest!

Moe Krabbe and Spike Anderson
Dave Syferd, Diane Kuenster, Ken Hatch

Bob Cremin, Ken Hatch, Gary Neumann