HomeCommunity NewsLaurell: Hospital Guild Plans Fashion Show Fundraiser

Laurell: Hospital Guild Plans Fashion Show Fundraiser

Every year, as summer dawns, the Burbank-based La Providencia Guild of Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles stages a membership drive in which it welcomes new members by presenting them with a yellow rose. The day is also a time when every guild member is encouraged to play an active role in recruiting future members. 

This annual event also spotlights the clothing and fashion accessories available at the organization’s Burbank Boulevard thrift shop with guild members, their children, grandchildren, and special guests presenting a fashion show to model the pre-owned and gently worn wares.  

This year’s membership luncheon, fashion show and meeting, co-chaired by Dorothy Vega Hernandez and Juliet Barroso-Navarro, was held at Burbank’s new Cambria Hotel. Following a courtyard reception, guild members lunched and were welcomed by the organization’s president, Ann O’Donnell-Gardner.

The day’s activities, presided over by Vega Hernandez, included remarks by guild member Desi Galvez, who promoted the group’s major fundraiser that will take place in the main ballroom at the newly renovated North Hollywood hotel, The Garland, on Sept. 21.

The storied hotel was originally built in the 1970s by actor Beverly Garland, best known for her role as Barbara Douglas in the CBS sitcom “My Three Sons” of the 1960s and ’70s, and her husband, Fillmore Crank, a businessman who was a direct descendant of Benjamin Franklin. 

The hotel was first established as a Howard Johnson’s Motor Lodge, but the passing years saw the lodge transformed into a Spanish mission-style resort known as Beverly Garland’s Holiday Inn, and then redesigned and renamed The Garland in 2014.

Among the numerous memorable moments and lore associated with the hotel: A presumably inebriated John Wayne threw trays of champagne off the top floor during the opening-night party, and Kurt Cobain proposed to Courtney Love on the property’s Portola Bridge.

Promising a dazzling day as designer fashions will be presented by professional models, Galvez, who will be chairing the event, said the committee’s goal is to raise $50,000. The event is open to the public.

The September fashion show will be presented by Lourdes Chavez, who founded a Los Angeles-based high-fashion couture atelier in 1997 that creates two collections a year. A world-class designer, Chavez has been recognized for her creations by the state of California, City of Hope, the Fashion Institute of Design and Merchandising and the Fashion Group International.

“Doing an event of this scale takes a village,” Galvez said. “We want a great turnout, and so we are asking every member to spread the word.”

Galvez, a former actor who appeared in the role of Taiwana in the 1995 Michelle Pfeiffer feature film “Dangerous Minds,” said she and other guild members are excited about new members coming in, especially mothers of daughters in the Burbank Chapter of National Charity League (NCL) who represent the guild’s future membership. 

“The guild is turning a new page, still adhering to old philosophies while also being open to fresh new ideas,” Galvez said. “We are embracing every member’s value — old members, new members — all of us who possess the same mindset, to do the best we can to raise funds for Children’s Hospital.”    

Last week’s fashion show, a scaled-down precursor to the fall extravaganza, was presented under the theme of “Explore the Golden Coast.”

Featuring outfits and ensembles for casual daytime outings and elegant evening affairs, each item modeled came from the guild’s thrift shop. Donning the fashions were patron mothers and Ticktocker daughters from NCL.    

Among the notables in attendance in the hotel’s RhuBAR Restaurant adjacent to the airy lobby were the guild’s 1st Vice President Carrie McCoy, and executive board members Janice Shafer, Joan Chandler and Teresa Garcia. 

The La Providencia Guild is currently helping to fund two associate chair programs at Children’s Hospital of Los Angeles: endocrinology and transplant surgery. The medical facility’s department of endocrinology treats 2,400 children with diabetes annually and 7,000 children with other endocrine disorders. It has also been performing 25 to 30 liver transplants each year, more than any other children’s hospital in California.

The guild, established in 1947, is one of 26 associate and affiliate members of the hospital that is governed by the Associates and Affiliates office. The guild supports the hospital by building membership, accepting donations, operating the thrift shop and by staging numerous fundraising events throughout the year.

For more information about the La Providencia Guild of Children’s Hospital Los Angeles’ September fashion show, thrift shop located at 3301 Burbank Blvd., or guild membership, or to make donations or inquire about estate planning, visit laprov.org or call (818) 845-6606.

DAVID LAURELL may be reached by email at dlaurell@aol.com or (818) 563-1007.

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