Christmas/Holiday Party
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Annual Christmas/Holiday Party

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Friday, December 10th, Lynnhaven Neighbors gathered at Laurel Manor for some game fun, food, and neighbors. While we were getting ready, December's volunteers were spreading table cloths and putting out centerpieces. Pasta Faire folded the napkins, set out the place settings, and put glasses of water on the tables. As we arrived, we checked in with Jim Selock and Roger Myers and they told us the table where we were assigned to sit. We found a seat at our table, then headed to the back of the room to take care of business. Pat Mitchell and Carole Hannigan were selling us 50/50 tickets, Dot Myers and Janet Steenburgh were on hand so we could sign up for January's event (Clark Barrios Duo), and Barb Hartmann was accepting memberships for 2018, with Ron Kalmin (membership for 2017) there to assist, if needed. Tony Hartmann was there for moral support.

All that taken care of, we headed back to our tables and met with others at our table and settled in.

Vice-President Sharon Brough welcomed everyone, and gave a special welcome to Barb Hartmann, the club's incoming Membership person for 2018. Then, thanked Ron Kalmin, the club's outgoing Membership person for 2017, who is retiring. Sharon also announced that she was retiring and Mary Dooley will be the club's new Vice-President. With that, she welcomed us to the Lynnhaven Neighbors annual Christmas/Holiday Party! The catering staff delivered large salad bowls to the tables. The salad dressings and bread & butter were already on the tables and we started passing them around and eating.

The food was put out and readied as we ate. Pasta Faire was ready, so Sharon explained that table numbers wouldn't be called; the table numbers were so we could find our table. On top of the Christmas tree centerpieces was a picture card having to do with Christmas. Judy Selock had someone pick the name of the first table to get their food and read it. Cheers went up at the called table and they got in line to get their food and start eating. As the line shortened, Judy had someone pick the next table, and so on, until everyone had been served. Then, it was announced that there was plenty so we could go up for seconds. Most of us were full, but others went back for more of their favorites. Yum! Then the caterers served pieces of cake for dessert.

As we finished, the band was ready to play, the tables were cleared, and we were ready to work off dinner. The Ambassadors Dance Band's first selection was the "Bandstand Boogie", and instrumental and the theme song of the Philadelphia-based TV show, American Bandstand. The Ambassadors had 15 members: a band leader, 3 trumpets, 2 trombones, bass, guitar, piano, 5 saxophones, percussion, and a lead singer. The lead singer introduced each song and provided a bit of musical history leading into the band's next selection. Their next selection was Les Brown's "Sentimental Journey", with the band's singer singing the words. That got a few people up and dancing. Moving ahead in time, they played "Proud Mary" and a lot of the women got up to dance. The band slipped back in time with Glenn Miller's "Chattanooga Choo Choo". Most sat down again, but a few kept on dancing. "The Great Pretender" got some more couples up to dance, followed by the Fats Domino hit, "Kansas City", and Dion's doo wop-style, "Runaround Sue". After awhile, they took a short break.

Rather than sitting there and waiting, several people appealed to Sharon and Judy to have the 50/50 drawings instead. They decided to comply and people got their tickets out. The tickets were mixed again, and someone was asked to pick the first winning ticket. As usual, people had trouble hearing the winning number being read until everyone got quieter. There were three lucky winners, each going home with and extra $30 in their pockets. Congratulations to all our lucky winners!

The band was back and ready to go again. They started off with a polka, then followed that with a sure-fire winner for getting people up on the dance floor, the "Electric Boogie" so we could do the Electric Slide. Anne Murray's hit, "Could I Have This Dance" got more of the guys up, followed by Ella Fitzgerald's hit, "Misty"... and the band played on....

BIG thanks to The Ambassadors Dance Band for providing a big-band sound for something different. If you have another group that might want to go with a big-band sound, you can email or call 352-445-5920.

Another BIG thanks to Pasta Faire Ristorante & Catering's staff. They prepared a good dinner and their staff really hustled to keep everything on schedule. Someone at our table commented that the crab-filled flounder was very good, and they didn't usually like fish. Ditto here. If you'd like to have them cater an event, contact LeeAnn Stewart at or call 352-260-5807.

And, a special thank you to this month's volunteers for a great job of setting up the tables, creating the centerpieces, and providing such a festive environment: Jeri Belknap, Dot & Ken Powley, Sonja & Dave Simmons, and as always, Barb Roberts even though she wasn't there. It was very welcoming.

Next month we'll be back at Laurel Manor again for the Clark Barrios Duo (Clark & France Neil). It will be table-share again to keep the cost to members down. If you want to sit with friends, have one person submit make the reservation and submit the checks for everyone in the group. Remember to dress warmly. The thermostat for the room is located near the stage, and when the lights make the stage hot, it kicks on the air conditioner.

See you Next Year... Lynnhaven Neighbors....

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