Saturday, October 17, 2015
Rubel Castle – 844 N. Live Oak Avenue, Glendora, CA 91740
In 1959, Michael Rubel (1940-2007) purchased the 2 ½ acre defunct Albourne Rancho, took up residence in its huge packing house, and built a marvelous castle out of concrete, stone, and other miscellaneous materials. By 1986, he and his friends had completed construction of a marvelous, fantastical castle.
Like a true castle, this architectural marvel has hosted royalty including Prince Philip, not to mention (but we will) Dwight Eisenhower, Henry Kissinger, Angie Dickinson, Bob Hope, Jack Benny, Alfred Hitchcock, and the Archbishop of Canterbury, Robert Runcie.
The Man Behind the Castle
Michael Rubel’s father, Henry “Heinz” Rubel, had been an Episcopal minister and gag writer for radio comedians—an uncommon career combo.
In the 1960s, Rubel’s mother, a one-time Greenwich Village Follies dancer, moved in and discovered that the 200-foot long former packing house was a perfect venue for her favorite hobby: parties.
Well-dressed guests arrived weekly by the hundreds, strolling past old tractors, buggies, horses, poultry, and other gritty accouterments of the bucolic citrus era to dine and dance inside a fruit packing house that had been transformed into a giant dance hall. Inside, surrounded by art and antique furniture remaining from Rubel ancestors, guests “mingled in the smudge oil and orange blossom atmosphere” as they danced to the orchestras.
In March 2005, Michael Rubel donated the Castle to the Glendora Historical Society.
The Rendezvous Schedule
Our own Corral member Don Green will head up the tours. He and castle builder Michael Rubel were buddies, so you’re bound to glean some fascinating inside scoop.
11:00 a.m. Tour #1
11:30 a.m. Tour #2
Silent bidding open
Cowboy music with Paul Rippens
12 noon Lunch served
12:45 p.m. Live auction with Eric Nelson
1:00 p.m. History lesson with Don Green
1:15 p.m. Vin Fiz Flyer
2:15 p.m. Tour #3
Gates close (Yep, you’ll be able to find your way home with the sun still above the horizon.)
The Scrumptious Meal
C’mon, what Westerner wouldn’t enjoy a bit of libation and fine dining in a castle! You’ll get all of that and more.
We expect Tim Heflin to ride in from Kennedy Meadows for the libation part. And Five Star Catering will take care of the fine dining that will include:
Grilled Chicken with Citrus Cream Sauce
Roasted Sirloin with Red Wine Demi
Vegetarian Pasta Primavera and all the usual accompaniments
The Toe-Tapping Entertainment
Vin Fiz Flyer is a bluegrass band composed of high school history teachers and musicians who sing original songs about California and Western history. They introduce each song with a brief account of the history, and then retell the story in song.
These guys alone are worth the price of admission—twice the price of admission, okay three times the price of admission!!!
Don’t Miss the Train
Your invitation will arrive in the US Mail in a few days!!
But seating is limited. If you drag your feet making a reservation, you may end up eating a rabbit around the campfire outside the castle walls like the slow pokes in the picture below. Mail your reservation and $45 per person to Jim Macklin at 1221 Greenfield Avenue, Arcadia CA 91006-4148.
See ya there, pard!