Santa Paula Planning Commissioner Fred Robinson (left) was one of the volunteer dealers for thev event.

Bronco busting fun at 9th Annual
SCVH-HSG Western Casino Night!

June 26, 2015
Santa Paula News

It was a night of bronco-busting fun at the 9th Annual Santa Clara Valley Hospice-Home Support Group’s Western Casino Night where everyone was a winner for a good cause.

The evening of gambling, raffle, Silent Auction, barbecue, socializing and live music was held at the historic Glen Tavern Inn where in its wilder days was known to play host to some third floor gambling shenanigans.

Guests first enjoyed cocktails and al fresco dining outside on the Inn’s wide expanse of lawn where they were entertained by the jazz guitar of Barry Cooper and Dave & Paul & Friends (Dave Ackerman, Paul Belgum and Donna Nelson with a few others filling the Friends category) before heading inside for a spot of gambling.

With a $250 starting stake of funny money it didn’t take long for the sound of cheers for big winners and sympathetic moans for losers to be heard but it was all in good fun.

Everyone came away a winner from the Wheel of Fortune spun by Police Chief Steve McLean who noted that a “Get out of jail free” card was not among the prizes.

Pam Merson said she was selling drink tickets and “not gambling” as well as helping her husband Ron, a celebrity blackjack dealer.

Hospice Board Directors Sally Cook and JoAnn Hobson were being kept busy helping gamblers to ‘git along to winning more prizes.

“John’s a dealer,” Gina Marquez said of her spouse, ”so I’m expecting favoritism!”

Cathy Barringer, a Hospice co-founder and longtime former board chairwoman, was everywhere helping out and not taking a break until most others had eaten the gourmet chuck wagon dinner.

“We always have a wonderful turnout because it’s just so much fun!” said Barringer. 

Bob Vogel agreed noting, “We have a very good turnout tonight!”

John Marquez winked as he dealt a hand of 21 to his wife Gina and admitted, “This is a questionable table…I’m trying to get lucky tonight!”

Gamblers also had other game choices including Texas Hold’em Poker.

Each winner was able to cash in their winnings for raffle tickets for special prizes.

Some skipped gambling at tables but rather asked Lady Luck for help in placing winning bids for the wide array of Silent Auction items.

The Silent Auction had dozens of diverse prizes from a Day of the Dead Celebration Basket created by Hospice Board Chairwoman Rachel Bustillos to an Easter Basket made by Hospice General Manager Sigrid Wong.

There was a Treasure Chest of Vintage Jewelry donated by Joan Toston and an array of Naturally Pure Products provided by Hospice Board Director Jeanice Lambert. 

From pampering to travel, an introductory flight lesson from CP Aviation to earthbound art there were dozens of prizes to keep you on your toes — ice skates and skating — to wines and vacation packages to relax by the Silent Auction drew busy bidders right until the end. The big prize of a stay at a beautiful Rincon Point home of course was the evening’s big-ticket item.

The big winner of the evening though was Santa Clara Valley Hospice-Home Support Group that offers an array of always-free services to residents of Santa Paula, Fillmore and beyond. The Hospice consoles those with life-threatening illnesses and their families, provides respite care for caregivers, had a equipment lending library, provides free transportation to medical appointments, has a visiting program for shut-ins and offers numerous other programs all free of charge.

For more information about Hospice call 805-525-1333.

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