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Archive for the ‘In Our Town’ Category

THE FATTED CALF SHUTTERED

Founded in 1966, hamburger lovers have trekked to the Clayton stand during its heyday, then operated by Vince and Tony Bommarito. Fatted Calf venues sprung up from coast-to-coast in the 1970s.  Alas, the restaurant has folded.

BUDWEISER CELEBRATES CHINESE NEW YEAR

Beginning tomorrow, Budweiser will bring the Chinese New Year (the year of the snake) to Times Square.  The Bud commercial will run continuously on an LED screen Feb. 9-16 and will feature urbanites in Beijing, New York and Paris holding the brew and counting down to the theme, “Celebrate the Chinese New Year Around the World.”

MIZZOU PREXY TIM WOLFE MAY FINALLY MEET FACULTY ON UM PRESS CLOSURE

Way back in May, University of Missouri System Tim Wolfe announced his decision to shut down the University of Missouri Press to save its $400,000 annual subsidy. Now Wolfe says he’s willing to get around to discussing his decision with Mizzou’s faculty members. Or their representatives, anyway – Wolfe sent a smoke signal that he is open to sitting down soon with officials of the faculty council, representing the academics. The UM Press has published many literary titles and has a large catalog. But a spokeswoman says Wolfe decided the UM Press wasn’t part of the university system’s mission. Academics, authors and other supporters of the UM Press have expressed outrage at the autocratic moves by Wolfe, who was picked for the system presidency from the corporate world. They say Wolfe has ignored the longstanding practice of shared governance between administration and faculty on academic matters. After the Columbia campus agreed to oversee the UM Press, its 10 or so employees got pink slips with no specific dates, so they are in limbo. To rub in salt on raw feelings, Mizzou announced it would hire a new UM Press editor for a salary almost doubling the pay from the editor who was sacked.

IN OUR TOWN

 

Joe Adams, Deanna Daughettee, Damon Tabor and Robin Smith

Joe Adams, Deanna Daughettee, Damon Tabor and Robin Smith

Dr. Warren Stevens, who studies fossil plants with reference to global warming, conceded that the effect is here and now: “And, it’s getting worse so be prepared.” Stevens, along with others from the Mo. Botanical Garden, sipped and supped at Dominic’s on The Hill with Drs. Shirley and Alan Graham and Olga Martha Montiel.  Nearby were Peoria’s Rebecca Dailey and Steve Hanselman, a dead-ringer for a royal.  Gina Galati, heiress of Jackie and Giovanni “Dominic” Galati, reminded us that on Aug. 29. the restaurant will host a Tuscan dinner in honor of “Winter Opera Nigtht.” Over at Truffles, celebrated architect Brian Smith grazed over plans for a manse in New Jersey with revered landscaper Matt Moynihan.  Sad news from Sally Johnston at another table that her beloved hub, Harry, is suffering with Alzheimer disease.

Matt Moynihan and Brian Smith

Matt Moynihan and Brian Smith

With her were their sprigs Bob and Sally Johnston, Liz Parker and Steve Johnston.  Overseeing the meals was Truffles chef Brandon Benack, former chef at Delmonico’s in New Orleans and Norman’s in Miami.  Signature dishes: bbq shrimp, Dover sole and gumbo. BTW, Morgan McDonald, granddaughter Truffles’ chief cheerleader is featured in the current run Stages’ “The Sound of Music”. . .

Sally Johnston (seated left) and her family

Sally Johnston (seated left) and her family

“Soldier of Fortune” Joe Adams got the onceover at Jimmy’s on the Park from Rolling Stone’s freelancer Damon Tabor, whom Adams will escort on a trip to the U.S./Mexican border to see first hand drugs and weapons smuggling. With them were Deanna Daughettee and KMOV’s Robin Smith. . .Sibyl Goldman, daughter of activist Vivian Eveloff, is doing the Hollywood thing these days with her commute to both left and right coasts.  She is a proud grad of John Burroughs. . .Hometowner Debbie Nadler Straubingerhas joined the Orlando campus of Webster U. . .

Steve Hanselmann and Rebecca Dailey

Steve Hanselmann and Rebecca Dailey

That was WashU law prof Rebecca Dresser in the New York Times yesterday urging adult children to discuss end-of-life issues with their aging parents and with doctors and nurses, “who know about the potential benefits and harms of interventions like feeding tubes.” Patients need accurate information about the possible consequences of their treatment choices, she argues and “medical professionals are the ones who can — and should — deliver that information”. . .

Shaw's Garden family with Giovanni "Dominic" Galati (right) at Dominic's

Shaw’s Garden family with Giovanni “Dominic” Galati (right) at Dominic’s

Also in the NY Times, a story on using flash- mobs for wedding proposals in which the reporter refers to our town: “The resulting flash-mob.proposal at the St. Louis Zoo was no easy feat.  The zoo’s strict guidelines in the use of its public space nudged Mr. Stephens into making a charitable donation of $250  in order to speed the approval process along with the zoo’s board of directors. The cost of this love-mob was levied at $3,500, which included the donation.”

ON THE TOWN WITH LOU AND MARTHA FUSZ

Lou and Martha Fusz (seated and surrounded by grandchildren)

Lou and Martha Fusz (seated and surrounded by grandchildren)

Martha and Lou Fusz, founder of the auto empire bearing his name were front ‘n center at Il Bel Lasgo toasting some of their grandchildren – a weekly ritual.  On hand were Corinne and Joseph Whitacre and Paul and Annie Fusz.  Lou recalled the days when,  in 1946, he first launched his dealership here. . .While the St. Louis City and St. Louis County NAACP battle it out over memberships, and $15,000 owed to the County branch by the City, former MO State Rep. Esther Haywood and County president is beaming brighter than ever because her grandson John Gaskin,

John Gaskin

John Gaskin

 III  has been elected national chairman of the NAACP’s  Influential National Youth Work Committee of National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP).  Gaskin was elected at the end of the civil rights  National Convention this past weekend in Houston Texas.  He is a sophomore at Benedictine College in Atchison, KS  and the first chairman ever elected to this position from Missouri.  Gaskin, III will serve as liaison between the national board and its new CEO of the NAACP, Ben Jealous. . .The Foundry Art Centre will bow its exhibit, “K-Pow! Comic Art & Storyboarding on July 27 featuring original works influenced from traditional or contemporary comics executed in any media.

WASHU’S ROBOT WORLD

“While fictional robots have been used for decades — witness the enduring cultural imprint of the movie characters Wall-E, the Terminator and R2D2, to name a few — only in recent years have real-world robots attained the sophistication to perform live,” reports Alex Wright in today’s New York Times. Under the headline “What a Mechanical Performance,” he describes professional a play in Chicago by Elizabeth Meriwether, one in Cambridge by Tod Machover, and a high school performance in New York, all of which featured robots. “Researchers are starting to develop machines that can move autonomously, memorize complex movement sequences and in some cases even improvise,” Wright says. And he quotes appropriately-named Washington University computer science professor Bill Smart, who has been collaborating withAnnamaria Pileggii, a performing arts professor, to use the tubular iRobot B21r models in acting classes.

BEEKEEPERS CONFERENCE

More than the termperature may be sticky next month when local beekeeper Jane Sueme, owner of Isabees.com, addresses colleagues from across the U.S. at a three-day conference of beekeepers July 12-14 at UMSL. . .Stickhead Lacrosse, Missouri’s only lacrosse and field hockey store, has changed its name to Stickstop.  No one will be surprised to learn that it’s located in Frontenac. . .St. Louis’ MarketVolt, owned by Tom Ruwitch, and Wilson Monnig Creative, owned by Melissa Wilson, has struck a partnership.  That on the heels of Wilson Monnig’s recognition at IABC’s Bronze Quill Award with Monsanto, Reliv International and Savvis.

ST. THOMAS SEMINARY CLOSURE DENOUNCED

Over decades, hundreds of aspiring priests – from here and elsewhere – attended St. Thomas Seminary in Hannibal and later kept in touch with classmates through an alumni website.  But while the seminary was closed years ago, that website has just been shut down by St. Louis native and Jeff City dioceses Bishop John Gaydos.  Among other roles, it had helped connect ex-students who had been victimized by Bishop Anthony O’Connell, Fr. Manus Daly and several other predatory faculty members.  The shut down has been denounced by former seminarian Mike Wegs who blogs at ThyChild’sFace.

ZOO ADO

The St. Louis Zoo garnered about $480k from Friday night’s Zoo Ado where more than 2,500 guests pre-registered.  The money will be used for the Zoo’s conservation efforts here and around the world. The event, presented by Wells Fargo Advisors, celebrated the Caribbean flamingo evidenced by the awesome attire of pink, feather boas and other creativity.  Guests excercised their flamingo-like flexibility by getting low with the limbo on the dance floor under the summer moon.  Music was provided by Dr. Zhivegas, Fat Pocket and DJ Raven Fox.  Event chairs Joe Ambrose and  Lynn Yaeger did all the right things with a memorable auction of vacations, concerts, sports tickets, artwork and golf packages.  Under their supervision the Zoo’s own Mane Event Catering got raves for the Caribbean cuisines, spiced port loin, braised short ribs and black bean Calypso burgers. In attendance: Marcia AmbroseDoug Yaeger; Zoo prez and CEO Jeffrey Bonner and Melody Noel; James Conway, chair of the Saint Louis Zoo Commission, and wife, JoanTom and Laurie Welch (Tom is a Saint Louis Zoo Association board member and president of Fifth Third Bank, a principal underwriter of A Zoo Ado)Drew and Denise Franz (Drew is a Saint Louis Zoo Association board member); Sharon and Dale Fiehler (Sharon is a Saint Louis Zoo Association board member); Rachel Seward, assistant veep Civic Relationship Manager at Wells Fargo Advisors, the presenting sponsor of A Zoo Ado; and and Jermal Seward, of the Young Zoo Friends Advisory Board; Jim Sansone, member of the Saint Louis Zoo Commission, and wife Kathryn; Cynthia Holter, Vice President of External Relations at the Zoo, and husband,Denny Holter; Peggy and Jerry Ritter; Charlie and Marilyn Hoessle; Patty and Mark Mantovani; Cathy andJim Gidcumb;  Cheryl and Lee Reid; Bonnie and Gary Halls and Terese and Greg Portell.

VEILED PROPHET YEARS

It is the last of the constants, where young people still curtsy, manners are excellent, the ladies are glamorous and drinking a bit too much is not only acceptable but almost mandatory.  The Veiled Prophet Ball has the panache and postiche, not to mention the champagne and tenderloin.  If you dare to talk about the past – and our town had a glorious one – the icy eyes stare at you as if you were some kind of addlehead.  So, you remember when veiled ones in the past were actually Roland Richards, Chuck Knight, Cedge Barksdale, Robert Hermann, Lou Maul and Joe Imbs?  Society babes: Anne Desloge Bates; Louise Heckman; Gertrude Bernoudy; “Lulu” Pulitzer; “Pudy” Calhoun, Ellen Conant, Rosalie Ewing, Pitti Brandin, Joanne Knight. In 1951, Mimi Koehler , who had the presence of mind to immediately afer being crowned, married Paul Ingersoll of Philadelphia, who was being shipped over to Germany.  He was part of the U.S. Army occupation.  Mimi thereby had all the fun of the ball and none of the tedious ribbon cuttings, visits to hospitalized children or whatever the queen had to do for one year. Another society type was the beloved Sally Bixby Defty, who’s now living in Bolton Landing, New York.  Update: The former Post-Dispatch editor/scribe Defty is currently meeting a deadline on the publication of a biography on her grandad, William K. Bixby, car builder, philanthropist and art collector.  Bixby’s son was a backer of Charles Lindbergh’s historic flight.
 


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