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Especially for first-time attendees at the conference, we’ve had some questions about what to wear. Casual is definitely okay. The Silent Auction/Banquet is the most formal of all the activities. The exhibit reception gets a mixed crowd–mostly casual, though. Think of the conference this way:

Thursday Daytime (casual)
Thursday Exhibit Reception (smart casual)
Friday Daytime (casual)
Saturday Daytime (casual)
Saturday Evening Silent Auction/Banquet–more tidy than normal, an opportunity to dress up a bit, either skirts or pants are fine

Don’t forget to check on the weather. It’s been unusually warm this week, but is supposed to start cooling down to 80 and below by Thursday. Even on the warmest days you will need a warm sweater or jacket for our cool evenings in the 60’s.

Here are the two options that I usually use for getting from LAX to the Pasadena area

Super Shuttle
Super Shuttle is a shared van service. You can make a reservation online at www.supershuttle.com or grab one at the airport. After you’ve collected your luggage, follow the ground transportation signs to the median outside and to the orange “Shared Ride Vans” signs. There you can check in with a representative from Super Shuttle. Cost is $31 for first guest and $9 for each additional guest. This is less expensive than taxis or limo services, but takes longer as you will be sharing the ride with others and the van may make several stops on its way to the Pasadena Hilton.

Supreme Shuttle Exclusive
This is a limo service that is more expensive than the shared van, but faster and more convenient, with no extra stops along the way. You can reserve your car by calling (800) 823-8801. The driver will meet you at the baggage area displaying a sign with your name on it. When you call you will need the ZIP code of the Pasadena Hilton, which is 91101. The cost from LAX to the Hilton is $61 for one passenger and $71 for two.
Linda Clingerman

For conference guests and participants who will be here to enjoy our wonderful city, this blog will be a place to start the conversation about what to see and do. First of all, you should know that the Hilton is right across the street from the fully staffed and very helpful Pasadena Convention and Visitors Bureau. Staff from the bureau will also be available on Thursday at the Hilton. We’re here to help you find the best restaurants, museums, golf courses and shopping so post your comments/questions here. And our committee will help you find the best of the Pasadena area–and further afield if you’re ready to brave our freeways.  Linda Clingerman, Visitor and Guest Activities

The Pasadena Visitors Bureau will provide lots of information about restaurants in Pasadena. We also thought it would be fun to share some of our favorites with you. If you’re looking for a certain type of restaurant, leave a comment here and we will put our heads together to come up with some good ideas.

Halloween is a fun holiday here. Many neighborhoods are extravagantly decorated and trick or treaters arrive in droves. Here are some ideas on celebrating.

Halloween Silent Movie at Disney Hall
Take this opportunity to visit Walt Disney Concert Hall in downtown L.A. and hear the magnificent organ pump up the music for the silent movie version of Phantom of the Opera. Tickets are $24 to $49 and available online at http://www.laphil.com.  Pre-concert talk starts at 7; the show starts at 8 on Friday, October 31.

Any Trick or Treaters with You?
Retailers in Paseo Colorado (just north of the Hilton) hand out trick or treats from 3 to 7. If you have children with you who want to trick or treat in a residential neighborhood, let us know by leaving a comment here. We can help arrange a trip to one of our neighborhoods so they won’t miss out. We would also like to prepare a Halloween activity package for them.

The Lady with All the Answers opens October 24 and will be performed each evening except Monday while you’re in town. The play is drawn from the life and letters of famed advice columnist, Ann Landers and stars Dharma and Greg’s Mimi Kennedy. Tickets range from $45-$55.

On Saturday, November 1, there’s also a preview peek at the season’s next play Stormy Weather, a musical featuring the story and music of Lena Horne. The preview from 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. features a performance by star Leslie Uggams, as well as refreshments and jazz. The preview is free but you must make a reservation.

Pasadena Playhouse is one of our local and regional treasures. The playhouse draws on the enormous acting and musical talent in Southern California to present gem after gem. The Spanish Revival theater is small (there are no bad seats) and intimate.  Intermission is on the patio. The playhouse is only 5 blocks from the Hilton.

For more information, go to the Pasadena Playhouse Web page at http://www.pasadenaplayhouse.org

Pasadena is a great place to see Arts and Crafts architecture and furniture. And because it’s the centennial year for Greene and Greene’s Gamble House, there are several related events happening. Easiest to see for conference participants is the comprehensive exhibit on Greene and Greene’s work that will open at the Huntington on October 18.It will be up in the Boone Gallery while you’re here and promises to be fabulous. Also, the Pasadena Museum of History is exhibiting two Arts and Crafts shows: one on Arts and Crafts textile design; and another about the lives of Greene and Greene in Pasadena. The Pasadena Museum of California Art is presenting a collection of photos of Greene and Green Architecture.

The Pasadena Vistor and Convention Bureau (right across from the Hilton) has maps of the ARTS buses that will take you to these three museums. The visitor bureau also has maps of walking tours of the arts and crafts neighborhoods in Pasadena if you’re interested in trying to squeeze one in. Pasadena Heritage also does these tours for groups, so leave a comment here if you’re interested in going with a group to see some of these wonderful houses.

First thing, stop by the convention bureau table and pickup information about restaurants that are convenient to the Hilton. If you want to focus on healthy food, there are several restaurants in the Paseo Colorado (just half a block north of the Hilton) you might want to check out. California Crisp focuses on salads and healthy sandwiches. Camille’s Sidewalk Cafe specializes in wraps and salads. The Paseo Colorado is also the location of Gelson’s–a high end market that includes salad and sushi bars, a full-service bakery, and a deli. There’s an outdoor eating area alongside the market. It might be a good option when you need to have a quick meal and want to keep it healthy. Go to the Paseo Colorado Web site at www.paseocoloradopasadena.com and click on restaurants and food to look at menus, hours and locations for all three of these options.

Restaurants in Old Pasadena, which is also nearby, tend to be more about celebrating food than keeping your cholesterol low. With effort, you can find healthy dishes on the many menus featuring cuisine from around the world. One of my favorite places for a light and healthy meal is the take-out area at the back of Il Fornaio. They have homemade soup every day and their amazing, hearty breads to go with it. There are tables outside rather tucked away from the bustle of Old Pasadena.

If you’re at the Huntington for a workshop, you will probably only have time for lunch at the Huntington Cafe located in the gardens. It has a limited menu, but always has at least one kind of homemade soup and fresh fruit and salads. Even though the menu is limited, one of my favorite parts of workshops at the Huntington is spending a pleasant lunchtime in the shady, outdoor dining area and having time for chats with the other artists.

If you’re not taking a class on Friday morning, join a group for breakfast at Clocker’s Corner at Santa Anita Racetrack in nearby Arcadia. A Santa Anita landmark, Clocker’s Corner is a trackside, open-air café that is open from 7:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m, Monday thru Friday. Enjoy an early morning breakfast and mingle with the horsemen as the horses go through their morning workouts. Workouts continue at Santa Anita Racetrack, even though the season closes on October 26. Send e-mail to asbavisitors@sbcglobal.net if you would like to go.

For more information about the racetrack and its beautiful location, go to the track website.

The Huntington’s exhibit showcasing 110 rare illustrated herbals and rose books, including a first edition of Redoute’s Les Roses, opened on February 9. I got a first glimpse of the show at a preview on February 8 along with a very enthusiastic crowd enjoying the work amid the perfume of baskets of dried rose petals (yes, you are encouraged to pick up and smell the roses). The botanical books on display trace the history of roses and are also marvelous “textbooks” on composition and technique for painters of flowers. In addition to the preview of the show, I enjoyed finding a wonderful book in the exhibit gift shop. It’s a new Taschen edition of The Roses and includes all of Redoute’s rose plates and a great chapter on his engraving techniques. Stock was running low when I was there, but the store manager said they should have more by the end of this month.

The exhibition is part of the 100th anniversary of the Rose Garden at the Huntington. Many rose garden events are planned during the year including a botanical watercolor class with Lisa Pompelli focusing on roses. Her class starts March 29 (and runs four Saturdays) when the rose garden should be in great bloom. Hint: If you want to attend make a reservation now, her classes fill up quickly.

“La Rose Imperiale” will be open through April 28. Don’t forget that the Huntington is now open on Mondays and closed on Tuesdays. Weekday hours are noon to 4:30; weekend hours are 10:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.

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