2015-2016 Event Photos

Taken by Patrick Mulvey, John Robinson Fellow

Patrick Mulvey is our Corral photographer and is the Los Angeles Westerners 2015-2016 John Robinson Fellow.

Patrick is a college student and his membership has been funded by Westerners. He has done a fabulous job taking photos of monthly meetings and events as well as other tasks. Westerners supports college students like Patrick and hope that others might apply to visit Westerners as well.

Please enjoy the photos below taken by Patrick. They are well done and really capture the spirit and appreciation of our Western heritage.

Galleries

2015 – Fandango & Monthly Meetings

2015 – Rendezvous at the Rubel Castle and Monthly Meetings

2016 – January Roundup

2016 – February Roundup

2016 – March Roundup

2016 – April Roundup

2016 – May Roundup

Other Events & Outings

Scroll down to navigate through 2013 Events.  To view events individually, select one of the following:

2015 – Rendezvous

2014 – Rendezvous

2014 – Harbor Boat Tour

2014 – Fandango

2013 – Santa Fe Crafts Fundraiser

2013 – Hat Night

2013 – Rendezvous

Earlier events can be viewed in the gallery menu on the right side of the page.

Rendezvous 2015

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Rubel Castle – 844 N. Live Oak Avenue, Glendora, CA  91740

Sold Out!

The Castle

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.

castle

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.

rubel

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. 

Schedule:

11:00 a.m.      Tour #1

11:30 a.m.      Tour #2

Bar open

Registration open

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

3:00 p.m.

 Gates close  (Yep, you’ll be able to find your way home with the sun still above the horizon.)

schedule

 

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
  

meal

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!!!

music

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.

train

See ya there, pard!

Navigate to the Members Only tab to quickly and easily pay for your registration & guests via PayPal.

 

October 25, 2014 – Rendezvous

 

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Harbor Boat Tour – August 15, 2014

Additional photos of the tour can be found here.

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Fandango – Saturday, June 14, 2014

2014 Fandango Bill King explaining case

Click here to view photos from the event.

Members of the Los Angeles Corral of Westerners met for the June Fandango at the John Rains House in Rancho Cucamonga. We will see Docents led tours of the home and showed us the bedroom where John Rains awakened to find his guns missing on the morning of that fateful murder.

Rains, owner of the 13,000 acre Rancho Cucamonga, was ambushed, lassoed, shot, stabbed, dismembered and left in the bushes 152 years ago near the present-day intersection of Arrow Highway & South Walnut Avenue in San Dimas.

The Fandango’s goal—solve that crime.  (This was undertaken for fun, it may not be historically accurate.)

Behind the Scenes

Contributing to this memorable event were:

Rains House docent Pam Strunk who conducted tours,
Sheriff Larry Boerio who shot photos of the Fandango,
Deputy Sheriff Pete Fries who ran the registration desk, logging in 61 attendees,
Factotum Extraordinaire Paul Rippens who provided cowboy music for the day,
History Professor Bill “Lickskillet” King who summarized the sordid events of the John Rains murder,
Cowboy Tim Heflin who trucked all the way in from Kennedy Meadows to run the bar and regale patrons with friendly conversation,
“The Hangin’ Judge” Gary Turner’s whose well-tied nooses contributed to good behavior by attendees and whose ruling resolved the case &
Auctioneer Eric Nelson whose “prix fixe” book sale and art auction raised enough money to keep the event in the black, despite the lower ticket prices.

Lunch was served at High Noon. Then each table sent a representative forward to identify who the murderer and present their case to Gary “The Hangin’ Judge” Turner.

Suspects

Prime suspects included 1) Merced Rains, widow, 2) Robert Carlisle, brother-in-law, 3) Cave Couts, fired Indian agent, 4) Cuervo Reyes, rancho employee, 5) Manuel Cerradel, alleged hit man, 6) Tomas Bustamante, bandit, and 7) Ramon Carillo, fired ranch employee.

Each of eight tables of picnickers at the Fandango sent a representative to argue their case before Judge Turner and the assembled crowd.

Whodunnit?

After appropriate consideration, Judge Turner ruled that Table 5, represented by Phil Brigandi had the best briefs (a non-sartorial reference). Judge Turner presented this outstanding legal team with a “pretty good bottle of wine” for their achievement. Ramon Carrillo was declared guilty.

Thank you to all the Westerners who participated and enjoyed an afternoon of fun, fellowship, and history…and who helped solve the murder of John Rains. Finally.

Case closed.

Click here to view photos from the event.

Sante Fe Crafts Fundraiser

The Los Angeles Corral of Westerners thanks Santa Fe Crafts for their donation!

“On Saturday, December 7, 2013, Santa Fe Crafts Native American Gallery, hosted a fundraiser for the Los Angeles Corral of the Westerners. Despite the poor weather the fundraiser was quite successful for Westerners, garnering $575, a 20% contribution from all Westerner sales. Festive holiday goodies, food and drink made this event a unique experience for all who attended. The staff of Santa Fe Crafts is looking forward to working with the Corral in the future for events where our Gallery may help to contribute to the Corral’s coffers. We want to thank everyone who purchased objects from the Gallery and their support of Westerners.” John Selmer, Santa Fe Crafts Native American Gallery, at 1123 Mission Street, South Pasadena, CA 91030 or telephone (626)799-3070.

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November 13, 2013 – Hat Night

October 19, 2013 – Rendezvous

The Rendezvous is our annual fundraiser where we are treated to a great western dinner, western music, drinks, and a book auction. We also honor those members who have made major long term contributions and commitments to our Corral. This is always a fun and productive event for the Corral. Members bring spouses, adult family members and guests. There is something for all! This year’s event was graciously held by Gary and Vickie Turner at their ”Hacienda”. Many heartfelt thanks to the Turners! This year’s theme  was in commemoration of the Civil War and the Gettysburg Address. We hope to see you at next year’s Rendezvous!

Photographs by Steve Crise.
New Honorary Members 2013: Eric Nelson, Abe Hoffman, Paul Showalter

New Honorary Members 2013: Eric Nelson, Abe Hoffman, & Paul Showalter

August 17, 2013 – Mt. Wilson Observatory

Los Angeles Westerners  do history with the Stars!
by Larry L. Boerio, Deputy Sheriff

Click here to view photos from the event.

On Saturday, August 17, 2013, twenty-five Corral members and guests toured historic Mount Wilson Observatory (MWO), the birthplace of modern astronomy where some of the most significant scientific discoveries of the 20th Century took place. Mt Wilson contains what were the largest telescopes in the world at the time. These telescopes, still in use, were vital to unlocking fundamental secrets of the Universe by scientists at MWO in the first half of the twentieth century. This half-day trip was another exclusive Corral Special Outing focused on experiencing history in “3-D”.

Our private tour was led by Dave Jurasevich, Deputy Director of Operations at MWO, who was our speaker at the monthly Roundup just three days earlier. As Dave told us at the beginning of the tour, “you are going to see things that others don’t get to see, because I have all the keys”. He was right!

After arriving at MWO, situated at 5712’ elevation, we first enjoyed the scenic beauty of the pine forest and the spectacular views overlooking Pasadena and downtown Los Angeles west to the ocean. Our tour began with a walk to the 150’ solar tower. On our way we saw a view of the historic Mount Wilson Toll Road (original trail built by Benjamin D. Wilson) used to bring the original equipment to Mount Wilson in 1904. Inside the solar tower, we were introduced to Steve Padilla, who has been observing the sun and sketching sunspots for scientific study for nearly forty years at Mount Wilson. Steve graciously showed us the observer’s area and its equipment.  He also demonstrated how he spots and records the sunspots by hand drawing them. The technique has not changed with sun spot activity records back to 1917. The Los Angeles Times, in its October 28, 2013 edition, highlighted Mr. Padilla and his work at Mount Wilson in its featured, front-page article for the day. We learned about George Ellery Hale, the founder of MWO, who discovered solar vortices as well as the systemic changing magnetic polarities of sun spots, (now known as the Hale-Nicholson Law).

We then proceeded to the 60” reflecting telescope. It was built in 1908, the largest reflecting telescope in the world at that time. Using the 60” scope in 1918, Harlow Shapley determined that our solar system was not the center of the Milky Way as was always thought. He calculated that it is 25,000 light years from the center of the galaxy on a spiral arm. We then proceeded to the 100” reflecting telescope, completed in 1917. Edwin Hubble used this instrument to make two monumental discoveries: 1) that the Milky Way was not the only galaxy in the universe, and 2) the expansion of the universe, which Albert Einstein originally refused to believe. In addition to the telescope, its dome, and all the control systems, we saw the wooden chair in which Hubble sat for his historic observations.  After all of this intellectual stimulation, Dave opened up the dome to the sky and later allowed us to go outside on a catwalk that is attached to the dome. There we all took a 360 degree ride as the dome rotated around to all the fabulous views from this mountain site. We then visited the site where Albert Michelson measured the speed of light in 1926.

As if this was not enough, Dave had more in store for us! We visited the Monastery that Hale built for scientists to live in while they studied at MWO. It was interesting that Hale gave himself a very small bedroom, just like the others. The Monastery contained his personal office where Dave showed us some very rare and significant scientific books that Hale studied. In addition to visiting the dining room, where many a world-famous scientist took their meals, we had the opportunity to sit in the Monastery’s study where Albert Einstein once lectured to a select group of scientists. The chair in which he sat is known as “Einstein’s Chair”; and Dee Dee Ruhlow sat in it without realizing that she was the lucky one out of the entire group! Pictures were a popping!

I wish to thank Dave Jurasevich for a fabulous tour and for offering us his many insights. Additionally, I must mention Jim Macklin, who heroically filled in for me to arrange registration of all participants and coordinated trip specifics with the Observatory.

Click here to view photos from the event.

July 13, 2013 – Santa Barbara Train Trip

Los Angeles Westerners  do history in high style!
by Larry L. Boerio, Deputy Sheriff

Click here to view photos from the event.

On Saturday, July 13, 2013, fifty-two Corral members and guests departed historic Los Angeles Union Station aboard two spectacularly-restored vintage passenger rail cars bound for Santa Barbara. This all-day trip was an exclusive Corral Special Outing focused on experiencing history in “3-D.”  More Special Outings are planned on a regular basis.

The two cars, Overland Trail (a former Southern Pacific 1949 Pullman-built Club-Lounge car used on the San FranciscOverland) and Silver Splendor (a former Chicago, Burlington & Quincy 1956 Budd-built Vista Dome-Lounge-Dining car used on the Denver Zephyr) are privately owned and have been meticulously restored, first-hand, by their respective owners Bill and Debbie Hatrick and John and Heidi Caestecker.  The cars were coupled as a private section to Amtrak’s Pacific Surfliner, which departed at 7:50 a.m. and arrived at Santa Barbara at 10:19 a.m.  A full breakfast, served by the truly first class wait staff of both cars, was really done up right!  The same can be said of the delectable dinner served on the return trip which departed at 4:35 p.m.

En-route, the history of the cars and the railroads was illuminated as we traveled along the ex-SP Coast Line (LA to Bay Area line, now owned by Union Pacific).  Originally, the Coast Line carried SP’s historic Coast Daylight train, which many consider to be the “most beautiful passenger train in the world” with its red, orange, and black color scheme.  Westerners chatted, drank, ate, viewed the passing mountains and coastline, and explored these two pieces of rolling history from the “glory days” of passenger railroading.  Upon arrival in Santa Barbara, with six hours available, many Corral members took advantage of the escorted tour of the many wine-tasting rooms.  Later, on their own, they formed their own small groups to explore this beautiful and historic city by the sea.  Others made their own small groups right away to explore the city directly, going to the Santa Barbara Historical Museum, Presidio, the many high-quality retail shops and art galleries, and the beautiful beaches and coastal views.  Everyone seemed to have a great time.  The chance to enjoy all of this with fellow Corral members was a real treat!  Perhaps Sheriff Joe Cavallo summarized it best:

My wife and I rode to SB in the 1949 car and rode back in the 1956 bubble top dome car. The loving attention to detail to these two train cars to make them so beautifully and historically restored was such a delight to see. It was like travelling back in time experiencing the beauty of California and our Western heritage, while journeying along in historically restored train cars. How much fun it was to talk, laugh, and enjoy the camaradarie of fellow Westerners in such wonderful surroundings. The time in Santa Barbara was great. Wine tasting, art museum, a great lunch with some of our Members  made every moment a lot of fun.  What an absolutely fabulous experience. Thanks to the owners of the cars and Larry Boerio who tirelessly gave attention to every detail and did a superb job. Westerners is committed to our magnificent historical heritage and all of our activities are designed to that end. I cannot wait until the next such event.”

Click here to view photos from the event.