Pops open 85 concert series

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Bobby Rydell chats with John Curto, Bill Scheible, Bert DeVries and Leon and Wanda Riggins at the Pops reception. Bobby Rydell chats with John Curto, Bill Scheible, Bert DeVries and Leon and Wanda Riggins at the Pops reception.

The Ocean City Pops Orchestra opened its 85th anniversary 2014 Summer Concerts with guest artist Bobby Rydell, who wowed the audience with his wonderful voice, wit and charm receiving a standing ovation.

Following the concert a dessert reception was held at The Flanders, where I caught up with banquet manager Karen Bergman overseeing final preparations. Karen was excited as she was awaiting the arrival of her first grandchild who was due very soon. Her daughter-in-law was in labor and Karen and husband, Steve, were headed to Cherry Hill the next morning to meet grandson, Max. Barbara Fasy and Mary Ann Gabel set up a table in the lobby to welcome guests when they arrived. Karen Morelli looked fresh as a daisy after a busy day helping daughter, Danielle, and her family pack up their home in Deptford for their move to Florida. Nancy Plauschinatz stopped to tell me how much she enjoyed the UMW Luncheon and Fashion Show last month. Phyllis and Ken Hoover, Marie and Pete Shafron and Joan and Jim Andrews staked out a table before heading to the dessert buffet. Friends of Pops Chairman Bert DeVries chatted with guests in the Crystal Ballroom as they awaited the arrival of Bobby Rydell.

Everyone was glad to see Marie and Bud Knight who returned from Florida. I enjoyed catching up with Gail and Joe Damone, John Petrycki and Judy Perkins at the reception. Carolann Cione lives in Egg Harbor Township but enjoys working at C. Melini in Ocean City. Bill Scheible and John Curto went off their diets as I caught up with them sampling the delicious array of desserts at the buffet. Peggy Lloyd looked great in a Kelly green linen jacket accented with white slacks and joked about it being a little late for this 100 year old to be out on the town. Sandy Simpson and this columnist quizzed Bobby Rydell’s wife, Linda Hoffman, when she arrived just ahead of her husband. Linda met Bobby on a blind date, have been married five years and live in Narberth, Pa. Bobby has one son, one daughter and five grandchildren. Bobby underwent a double organ transplant in 2012, returned to the stage in Vegas six months later and is dedicated to bringing public awareness to organ donation. When Pat Gillian told Bobby her maiden name was “Ridell” he admitted his family name was “Ridarelli”, but his father shortened it to “Rydell” when he was 8. I must thank Marie Shafron who I have promoted from Cub Reporter to Ace Photographer as she pushed her way through the crowd to take this columnist’s picture with Bobby Rydell while he signed autographs, chatted with guests and posed for pictures.  

When Alice Wolf celebrated her 60th birthday, her co-workers at the Primary School surprised her with a dinner party at Doc’s Place. One celebration wasn’t enough for our school nurse as the next night friends gathered at Alice’s home for another party. Having been at Alice’s 40th and 50th birthday parties, Marion McCaughey and this columnist were on hand to celebrate her 60th. Joyce Trofa stopped by before heading up to the Boardwalk to watch the Miss New Jersey Parade. When Kathleen Woodring arrived on her new bicycle with Hawaiian paintings on the fenders Sue Annarelli had to check out this beauty. Chris and Al Heston are retired teachers, however Chris enjoys working part time at Uncle Bill’s Pancake House. Carrie Merritt was smiling when she arrived as she was lucky to get her broken front tooth fixed by her dentist, Susan Wyszynski, earlier. Mike Foster joined wife, Janet, and Kristen Montanero and Joel Dugan on the back deck when he arrived while Alice held court on the front porch with the ladies including Lisa Hurff and Gail Blevin. Denise Jessel and I left early to head over to Schuy Wood’s annual Miss New Jersey dinner party.

Old habits are hard to break, so when Maribeth Neall gave up coordinating the Miss New Jersey Parade after 10 years followed by a dinner party at Schuy Wood’s, our “Hostess with the Mostess” held a dinner to honor Maribeth for all her hard work on previous parades.  Schuy and Maribeth watched the parade but left early and were relaxing and enjoying hors d’oeuvres in the sunroom with Peggy Doyle when Denise and I arrived. As soon as Kathie Hughes, Robin Crowley, Marie Shafron, Marilyn Evans and Janet Furimsky settled in Maribeth proceeded to open gifts from friends. This queen of pageants got three rhinestone tiaras, one scepter, gold sequin slippers to rest her weary feet, a silver glitter high heel shoe vase, an engraved glass bowl commemorating her 10 years running the Miss New Jersey Parade and other goodies. When Schuy’s niece, Mary Deming, told us dinner was ready we headed upstairs to the dining room where the table was set with fine china and silver, crystal water goblets, place cards, hostess gifts and fresh flower centerpiece from Spinning Wheel.    

Marion and Ned McCaughey hosted the Exchangettes annual summer cookout at their home in Upper Township. While Alice Wolf and Peggy Doyle helped set out the food for dinner Ned got help from George Reeves outside on the deck cooking franks and burgers. Judi Roseland brought me up to speed on husband, Warren’s, progress while she tossed a mean salad at the kitchen counter. I enjoyed dinner in the family room chatting with Linda and Curt Gronert, Irene Reeves and Maribeth Neall while my husband joined Winnie Piriano, Carol Heenan and Eric Wakabayashi at a table in the living room. Andrea and Don Paul, Peggy and Larry Doyle, Warren Iredell and Barb and Dean Adams gathered around the dining room table for dinner. Joanne Budnick left early but everyone enjoyed her home baked apple pie. Dottie McClain gave out new Avon catalog books while Jane and John Lugo, Suzan and John LaRosa and Anita and Bill Culp folded tables and chairs and staked them under the stairs in the family room.

Cathy Finnegan (center) chats with Bud and Marie Knight and Pat and Roy Gillian at Pops Reception at The Flanders. Cathy Finnegan (center) chats with Bud and Marie Knight and Pat and Roy Gillian at Pops Reception at The Flanders.


Jim and Joan Andrews, Pete and Marie Shafron and Phyllis and Ken Hoover line up for a picture at the Pops reception. Jim and Joan Andrews, Pete and Marie Shafron and Phyllis and Ken Hoover line up for a picture at the Pops reception.


 Joe and Gail Damone, Peggy Lloyd, Diane Streadbury and John Petrycki get together at the Pops reception. Joe and Gail Damone, Peggy Lloyd, Diane Streadbury and John Petrycki get together at the Pops reception.


Mary Ann Gabel, Barbara Fasy, Sandy Simpson, Carolann Cione and Karen Morelli enjoy the Pops reception Mary Ann Gabel, Barbara Fasy, Sandy Simpson, Carolann Cione and Karen Morelli enjoy the Pops reception


 Alice Wolf is surrounded by friends, Chris Heston, Lisa Hurff, Al Heston, Kristen Montanero, Kathleen Woodring, Sue Annarelli and Janet Foster at her 60th Birthday party. Alice Wolf is surrounded by friends, Chris Heston, Lisa Hurff, Al Heston, Kristen Montanero, Kathleen Woodring, Sue Annarelli and Janet Foster at her 60th Birthday party.


Schuy Wood, Maribeth Neall and Peggy Doyle (seated) enjoy Miss New Jersey party with Marie Shafron, Robin Crowley, Janet Furimsky, Marilyn Evans, Kathie Hughes and Denise Jessel. Schuy Wood, Maribeth Neall and Peggy Doyle (seated) enjoy Miss New Jersey party with Marie Shafron, Robin Crowley, Janet Furimsky, Marilyn Evans, Kathie Hughes and Denise Jessel.


Ned McCaughey gets lots of help from Anita Culp, Suzan LaRosa, Andrea Paul, George Reeves, Joanne Budnick, Irene Reeves, Linda Gronert and Jane Lugo at the Exchangette Cookout Ned McCaughey gets lots of help from Anita Culp, Suzan LaRosa, Andrea Paul, George Reeves, Joanne Budnick, Irene Reeves, Linda Gronert and Jane Lugo at the Exchangette Cookout


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