Thursday, July 31, 2008

Heritage Days are almost here

If you were looking for a reason to come to Salem, Heritage Days might just be the ticket for you. Here are some of the events that are happening in conjunction with this festival, but there are many more, and you can find out about all of them on which is the City of Salem's website. Just click on the link for Heritage Days.

I hope to see you here at the Hawthorne Hotel.


This year's Heritage Days will kick off with A Mayor's Night Out restaurant hors d'oeuvres sampler where you can join Mayor Driscoll on a tour of three of Salem's hot dining spots: Passage to India, Strega Restaurant and Lounge and the Regatta Pub at the Salem Waterfront Hotel. The event takes place Friday, August 1; from 5 – 7 pm. Cost to participate is $20 with proceeds to benefit Salem Main Streets. Pre-registration for the event is required. For more information or to register contact Salem Main Streets at (978) 744-0004 or email

20th Annual Salem Maritime Festival
Salem Maritime National Historic Site, Derby Wharf, Salem, MA

Evening concerts, Friday, August 1 from 7 - 9 pm and Saturday, August 2 from 6 - 8 pm; Music and Activities, Saturday, August 2 from 10 am - 6 pm and Sunday, August 3 from noon - 5 pm
The 20th annual Salem Maritime Festival will have live traditional and contemporary music, traditional crafts demonstrations and children's activities, including kite making, radio-controlled boats, and horse-drawn wagon rides, will take place on Saturday from 10 to 6 pm and Sunday from 12 to 5 pm, with an evening concert by the Squeezebox Stompers on Saturday at 6 pm. The festival is free and open to the public. For more information, visit our web site at

Ameri-Canine Dog Show – 4PM-6PM - Salem Common
Is your dog the next Bark Obama or John McCanine or perhaps Howl-Lary Rodham Clinton. Dog owners come enter your four legged friends in categories such as: Most Petriotic USA Costume, Best Speaker, Tug of War, Presidential Race, Space Program, Canine-idates meet and greet and Best Liar. In the end, the audience will vote for the Ameri-canine president. Entry fee: $5. Registration begins at 3:00 p.m. (rain location: South Harbor Garage). For more information contact Donna at 978-744-2615.

A fun event with categories such as "Best Speaker" (owners translate their dogs' barking" and "Best Liar" (dog that lies on the ground the longest wins.)

Salem's Super Scooperbowl ~~ Salem Common, Salem, MA
Tuesday, August 5 from 6 to 7:30 pm

Indulge your sweet tooth in this ice cream event. Sample flavors from Ben and Jerry’s, Captain Dusty’s, Cherry Farm Creamery, Friendly’s, Hobbs, Maria’s Sweet Something and Rita’s Italian Ice. Enjoy entertainment provided by DJ Doug, balloon twisting and face painting. Tickets are $5 for adults $3 for children. For more information contact Jennifer Bell at (978) 744-0004.

YMCA Pizza Contest
Salem Common, Salem, MA
Thursday, August 7 from 6 to 7:30 pm

Come decide which Salem restaurant has the best pizza. Bring the whole family. We will award the top adult and kids pick. Tickets are $5 for adults and $3 for kids. For more information contact the Salem YMCA at (978) 744-0351.

Phillips House - Thursdays At Twilight Program
34 Chestnut Street, Salem, MA
Thursday, August 7 starting at 7 pm

Visit the Phillips House at twilight on Thursday, August 7 and see how electric light of the early twentieth century transforms a Federal-era house. The program will feature selections from the Phillips family home movies which will provide a glimpse of how the family lived and entertained in 34 Chestnut Street, where they traveled, and how they spent their leisure time. A first floor tour of the house is included. Light refreshments will be served. The cost is $10 for Historic New England members and $15 for the general public. Advance registration is required and recommended since last month's Twilight tour sold out. Please call (978) 744-0440 or visit for additional details.

Essex Street Fair
Downtown Salem & Pickering Wharf
Saturday, August 9 and Sunday, August 10 from 10 am - 6 pm

Fun for all ages this street festival has something for everyone. Crafts, jewelry, paintings, stained glass, and other unique items will be featured along the Essex Pedestrian Mall. Street performers, face painters, and musicians will entertain all. For more information contact the Salem Chamber of Commerce at (978) 744-0004.

Phillips House Seventh Annual Antique Car Meet
34 Chestnut Street, Salem, MA
Sunday, August 10 from 12 - 3 pm

On Sunday August 10, Historic New England's Phillips House will be teaming up with the North Shore Old Car Club to display a rich assortment of antique and vintage vehicles on picturesque Chestnut Street in Salem. The event will be taking place from 12 - 3 pm, rain or shine. Admission is free and open to the public and advance registration is not required. Festivities throughout the day will include children's activities, refreshments, and live music on the back lawn. The Phillips House will be open for free first floor tours. The Phillips' Carriage House tour will offer visitors a close-up look at two Pierce-Arrows and a 1929 Model A Ford as well as an extensive late 19th century carriage collection. For more information call (978) 744-0440.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Another Adoption Party in Nathaniel's

We seem to have become a destination for after-adoption festivities here in Salem. Today we had this happy event during our breakfast service in Nathaniel's. The DuBreuil family came to celebrate here, and I was so happy to see them because they are neighbors to a golfing friend of mine!

In the photo above you will see, seated in the front row, left to right:
Marianne Jerette, proud new grandmother to Mary; new Dad, Robert DuBreuil with Mary DuBreuil on his lap; new Mom, Lisa DuBreuil, and Jeanine Dubreuil, the other proud new grandmother.
In the back row are John Jenette, great uncle; Paul Jenette, grandfather, Melissa Matherin, aunt; cousins Cartney Matherin, Liam, Nina and Abaigael Cockoran; Jean Cochoran, aunt. [I apologize in advance for any names that might be misspelled.]

I hope you enjoy being part of this happy day for all concerned, and I look forward to seeing you here too.

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The Summer Menu at the Garden Restaurant at PEM

Watermelon Goat Cheese Salad (my favorite)

Heirloom Tomatoes with Fresh Mozzarella and Fresh Basil, Heirloom Romaine Lettuce

Grilled Marinated Flank Steak (it will be cooked to your order -- I like mine rare and that is exactly the way it came.)

Cappuccino Ice Cream Torte

Here is our summer menu from PEM's Garden Restaurant. I have included some photos of some of the items. The complete menu follows this the body of this post. I hope you enjoy a visit there this summer, as it is the perfect place to have lunch in Salem. Open Wednesday through Sunday for lunch. Reservations are ALWAYS a good idea, but not always required. Call 978-745-9500 x 3157 or 3118.

I hope to see you there.


Peabody Essex Museum
Garden Restaurant


Trio of Chilled Soups
our Chef’s seasonal and fresh creation
(may be ordered individually as well)
Six Dollars

New England Clam Chowder
Cup ~ Four Dollars Fifty Bowl ~ Six Dollars

Mixed Green Salad
julienne cucumbers, carrot ribbons,
cherry tomatoes, radish sprouts
house vinaigrette
Seven Dollars

Caesar Salad
romaine, shaved Parmesan and croutons
Eight Dollars

Watermelon and Goat Cheese Salad
yellow and red watermelon, chives,
Vermont goat cheese, ice wine vinaigrette
Eight Dollars

Tomatoes, Fresh Basil, Mozzarella
baby red romaine lettuce,
white balsamic vinaigrette
Nine Dollars
(not part of the soup and salad combination)


Soup and Salad Combination
your choice of one of our three appetizer salads and chowder or soup trio
Thirteen Dollars

Marinated Flank Steak
purple Peruvian potatoes, black bean-tomato corn relish in cilantro vinaigrette
Sixteen Dollars

Citrus-Chive Crab Salad
Bibb lettuce, orange wheels, julienne tomato, avocado, triple citrus vinaigrette
Fifteen Dollars

Chilled Orange-Poached Salmon
sweet and sour blueberry sauce, marinated red bliss potatoes, green bean salad
Sixteen Dollars

Raspberry Chicken Salad
our signature salad ~~ chicken, spiced pecans, mixed greens, raspberries,
Mandarin oranges, raspberry vinaigrette dressing
Demi-portion ~ Nine Dollars Fifty Entrée-size ~ Thirteen Dollars

Portobello Mushroom Stuffed with Herbed Quinoa
vegetables julienne, roasted carrot puree
Thirteen Dollars

Chicken Caesar Salad
romaine, Parmesan, classic Caesar dressing and croutons
Demi-portion ~ Nine Dollars Fifty Entrée-size ~ Thirteen Dollars

Panini of the Week
European-style grilled sandwich selection
see the daily specials sheet for today’s panini

HAWTHORNE CATERING . Summer Menu . 978.745.9500 x 3157

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Christmas in July or Holidays in August?

Last week Thomas MacDonald and Robyn Sheather, along with all of the members of our Sales Department, prepared bags of Christmas and Holiday Cookies to take with them on calls to clients and potential clients in the area. They also brought along a cute poem written by our Director of Catering, Karen Cotton.

Karen's poem reminded everyone that it is not too soon to be thinking about booking a holiday event at the Hawthorne Hotel, in order to secure your favorite date.

We hope to see you here.

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Monday, July 28, 2008

Ropes Gardens' Dinnerplate Dahlias Are In Bloom

Just a 10 minute walk through downtown and into the Historic McIntire District is the Ropes Mansion Gardens. I snapped these photos this morning with my iPhone and thought you might enjoy them.

The dahlias are spectacular this year.

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Our Offsite Catering Division Garners Another Great Thank You

As you may already know, we are the Preferred Caterer for PEM (Peabody Essex Museum) here in Salem. This email just arrived, and I thought I would share it with you -- certainly made my day!


Sent: Saturday, July 26, 2008 11:12 AM
To: Natalia Laskaris; Lindsay Otis

Subject: Thank you, thank you, thank you

Dear Natalia and Lindsay,

What an incredible event we hosted for our constituents. Selecting the PEM as our venue was sheer genius, even if I do say so myself. I can’t imagine a more suitable location that aligns so well with our mission. A friend dropped off an article that appeared in The Boston Phoenix just yesterday and now I must keep the China exhibition planned for 2010 in my mind for a future SYA event (is there a mailing list I can be placed on?)

The entire staff – both of PEM and Hawthorne – was professional, courteous and ever-ready to help. Everything from start to end was seamless, and we very much appreciated the help in sweeping guests from the gallery to the hall, and then the efforts in helping guests leave – always a struggle. Of the little I ate and from everyone I spoke with, the food was outstanding, both in taste and in presentation.

From the Gateway to Bombay exhibit to the display of the international fare being sampled in the East India Marine Hall, the entire event seemed to be tailored just for SYA and the celebration of the opening of our new school in India. The simple orchid arrangements were perfect (I’m looking at one while I type), and the stationary displays stunning.

Everyone left with an extreme sense of pride for our organization and this feeling was helped by the welcoming atmosphere of PEM and Hawthorne. With the exception of the monsoon conditions that kept some guests from joining us, this was without a doubt the best gathering for SYA. Thank you for helping to make this happen.

I do look forward to hosting a future event at PEM.


An Interesting Article About "Wedded Bliss" at PEM

The current exhibit at the Peabody Essex Museum that is called "Wedded Bliss" recently garnered an interesting review on the Boston Phoenix's Greg Cook's blog. Since it gives one great insight into this exhibit, I thought I would share the link with you, and here it is:

If you are planning a visit to Salem to see it, check out our Wedded Bliss Package by calling us at 978-744-4080 or 800-729-7829.

I look forward to seeing you here.


Sunday, July 27, 2008

Hawthorne Hotel's Flags of the Week ~~ July 28 through August 3, 2008

Here are this week's flags.

Monday , July 28 ~~ Zambia and Nevada
Tuesday , July 29 ~~ Zimbabwe and New Hampshire
Wednesday , July 30 ~~ Afghanistan and New Jersey
Thursday , July 31 ~~ Albania and New Mexico
Friday , August 1 ~~ Algeria and New York
Saturday , August 2 ~~ Andorra and North Carolina
Sunday , August 3 ~~ Angola and North Dakota

I hope to see you here.


Saturday, July 26, 2008

Lobby Watching Was Such a Delight This Past Weekend

It seems like there is always something happening at the Hawthorne Hotel, and this past Sunday was no exception. At around 11:30 am, these people and about 30 more people who were dressed very similarly, were gathered in the lobby waiting for transportation to take them to a wedding at an old estate here in Essex County.

They were all from England, and were staying with us here at the Hawthorne. The ladies were all dressed spectacularly, and almost everyone of them had on a hat, and most of the hats were the style called a 'facinator' made of feathers, ribbon and netting. They looked so charming for a morning wedding. The men were all dressed in morning coats and looked particularly dashing.

Above, the father of the groom, and below, the mother of the groom. Aren't they grand?

I hope you enjoy this Sunday morning managers-eye view of the lobby of the Hawthorne Hotel.

Oh, and by the way, if you want to know more about morning coats, here is a link to Wikipedia:


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Friday, July 25, 2008

Celebrating 50 Years Together

Here you see the Sternthal family celebrating the 50th wedding anniversary of Mr. and Mrs. Sternthal on July 16. Their celebration with their beautiful family took place in our Nathaniel's Restaurant.


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Thursday, July 24, 2008

My Favorite Museum Gets a GREAT Review

If you have read my blog for any length of time, you will already know that I LOVE the Peabody Essex Museum, aka PEM, here in Salem (located just one block from the Hawthorne Hotel.) I happen to think it is far better that the Met in New York, which I finally visited last November when I was in NYC to participate on a panel about blogging for the Hotel Industry at the American Hotel and Lodging Association annual meeting.

I have been to a number of other museums in the world's principal cities, and I would proudly stant PEM right up there with them. We are so honored to have it here in our historic city.

Now, Greg Cook has written an excellent piece for the Phoenix, and since the article invites sharing, I thought you might like to read it as well. So here is the link:

Peabody rising
Bold leadership and an ambitious curatorial vision have vaulted the Peabody Essex Museum into a spot among the country’s best
By GREG COOK July 23, 2008

I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I did. But more than that, I hope you enjoy visiting there, and stopping by the Hawthorne Hotel as well.

I hope to see you here.


Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Happy 25th Wedding Anniversary

Last weekend Mr. and Mrs. Perron celebrated their twenty-fifth wedding anniversary with us here in Nathaniel's Restaurant at the Hawthorne Hotel.


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Tuesday, July 22, 2008

An Awesome Thank You Note for the Entire Hawthorne Hotel Team

If you want to enlarge the letter for easy reading, just click on it.

Receiving a letter such as this one absolutely made my day! Wow, what a raving fan and awesome guest!!!!

I hope we can provide a similar experience for your visit to the Hawthorne Hotel.


Monday, July 21, 2008

Hawthorne Hotel Names Abby Lincoln Part-time Employee of the Month

Today we awarded Abby Lincoln the part-time employee of the month award for June, 2008. Abby works for us at the Front Desk, and she started here at the Hawthorne Hotel around the same time that I did. She left us for awhile, and is now only working part-time while she pursues her real passion (working with horses), but when she is here, she gives us her full attention and commitment. We are so pleased to be able to recognize Abby for the great work that she does for us each week.

Thank you, Abby, and congratulations!

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Sunday, July 20, 2008

Hawthorne Hotel's Flags of the Week ~~ July 21 through 27, 2008

This week we have no special requests, so we are returning to our normal alphabetical order rotation of the flags for the countries of the United Nations, and the States of the U.S.

Monday , July 21 ~~ United Republic of Tanzania and Michigan
Tuesday , July 22 ~~ Uruguay and Micronesia
Wednesday , July 23 ~~ Uzbekistan and Minnesota
Thursday , July 24 ~~ Vanuatu and Mississippi
Friday , July 25 ~~ Venezuela and Missouri
Saturday , July 26 ~~ Viet Nam and Montana
Sunday , July 27 ~~ Yemen and Nebraska

I hope to see you here.


Saturday, July 19, 2008

An Historic Postcard of the Hawthorne Hotel

Today I received the scan of this postcard from a friend of the Hawthorne Hotel. It appears to be from the period of the 1950's, due to the signage out front. If you have any further information about this drawing, please do share it with us.
To see more of the detail, enlarge this on your screen by clicking on the image.

Thanks, and I hope to see you here.


Friday, July 18, 2008

The Ropes Garden in July 2008

One of the most popular places on the Destination Salem website is the page of Ten Free Things to Do in Salem. Visiting the Ropes Gardens, at the Ropes Mansion, is one of those things. Here are some photos I snapped this week. I hope you enjoy them.


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Thursday, July 17, 2008

Cinema Salem's Current Line Up

If you are coming to Salem, or live here, you may want something to do in the evening, or even as a break from sightseeing. I can highly recommend Cinema Salem, from first-hand experience.

They always have first-run movies at the most reasonable prices around, popcorn with REAL BUTTER, and interesting snacks at the snackbar.

Here is this week's newsletter from their owner, Paul Van Ness:

Dear Juli,

Last year, it was ONCE, the achingly beautiful musical with a small budget and a big heart. When I finished watching it I said, "That was my favorite film of the year."

I had the exact same reaction Saturday night (and again last night) when I saw the beguiling SON OF RAMBOW, a tale of two British youngsters whose somewhat bleak lives are permanently brightened by their friendship and love of film. The movie epitomizes human-scaled storytelling (much like WALL·E, ironically), with a liberal seasoning of wit and physical comedy.

You can still catch SON OF RAMBOW for the next three days at CinemaSalem, or as it happens, at the Cabot Street Theater, if that's more convenient. In Salem, it's showing at (12:15), (2:20), (4:45), 7:30 and 9:45. Although it's rated PG- 13, it seems perfectly appropriate for kids 10 and up, if you don't mind five swear words, and is a marvelous movie for kids and parents to watch and talk about together.

Thursday evening, at midnight, CinemaSalem proudly presents the premiere of the latest Batman adventure, THE DARK KNIGHT (PG13 - 150 minutes), still boasting a tremendous positive rating from critics as compiled at Heavy hitter Richard Roeper of Ebert and Roeper writes, "This is a rich, complex, visually thrilling piece of pop entertainment, as strong as any superhero epic we've ever seen." Heath Ledger's turn as The Joker inspired Owen Gleiberman in Entertainment Weekly to write, "In this, the last performance he completed before his death, Ledger had a maniacal gusto inspired enough to suggest that he might have lived to be as audacious an actor as Marlon Brando, and maybe as great."
Besides the Thursday midnight show (which is technically on Friday morning), THE DARK KNIGHT will play Friday-Thursday at (11:45 AM), (3:15), 6:45 and 10:00.

The aforementioned WALL·E (G - 103 minutes) has been called Pixar's best film ever, which is saying something. The Montreal Film Journal notes, "This love story moved me more than any other in years." WALL·E plays Friday-Thursday at (11:30 AM), (2:00), (4:30), 7:00 and 9:15.

HANCOCK (PG13 - 121 minutes) has impressed Will Smith fans, such as Uruguay Total: "Una buena idea no hace necesariamente una gran película, y Hancock está lejos de ser perfecta. Aún así vale la pena y Will Smith está perfecto en su rol titular." HANCOCK will screen Friday-Thursday at (12:00), (2:20), (5:15), 7:30 and 9:40.

Thanks for supporting CinemaSalem!

Paul Van Ness

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Puppy's First Visit

Earlier this month we had some guests from Connecticut staying with us here a the Hawthorne Hotel. While they were here, they drove to Maine to see a puppy, and they fell in love (who wouldn't) with this cute little bundle of fur. They got him on the spot, and he spent the night with us and them before heading out the next day. In the second photo you see him with his new owner, Lisa (who looks remarkably like one of our staff members, Abby, in case you are thinking the same thing I did when I saw he photo.)

Since Lucie, of our front desk staff, took these photos while I was away from the property, I did some fact-checking for this story. I received the following information by email from Buddy's owner, Lisa:

Our new puppy is named Buddy. We were on vacation and staying at the Hawthorne when my brother-in-law, Bob, saw an ad in the paper for Maltese puppies in Southern Maine. I had been talking about a puppy for a couple of weeks so we decided to take a ride. So my husband, Gus, my sister, Diane and my brother-in-law took the 2 hour plus ride to Poland, Maine…and the rest, as they say, is history. Buddy was 7 weeks old. He enjoyed the rest of his stay at the Hawthorne, he saw the fireworks that night and enjoyed a leisurely dinner afterwards at Victoria Station. He also took the high speed Ferry to Boston the next day. Needless to say, he was a hit everywhere he went and he is looking forward to seeing everyone at the Hawthorne again on our next visit!

I hope you enjoy learning a little bit more about us and our guests, in the pet-friendly Hawthorne Hotel.


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Tuesday, July 15, 2008

A Memorable Guest Asks Us to Remember Her

Today when I was at the front desk, this guest, Marilyn Ure, was speaking to one of our clerks, Lucie, and asking about reservations for October 2009. She had been here at the Hawthorne Hotel for the first time this week and really enjoyed it. She wants to come back with some friends to experience the craziness that is October in Salem, and can't think of staying anywhere else.

Lucie explained to Ms. Ure that we do not open up our reservations until one year in advance of any given date, so that if she wants to come on a non-Halloween weekend in October of 2009, she should go on our website, ( ) or call us one year and one day before the date for which she is seeking a reservation, and she should be able to get the Derby Room that she desires.

Ms. Ure wanted to make sure that Lucie remembered her, so she said "remember me, I'm the tattoo lady from Las Vegas".

I couldn't resist asking Ms. Ure if she would like to be a part of our blog, and she was happy to comply. She teaches piano in Las Vegas, and enjoys her cats and her snakes (and obviously being decorated with body art.)

I hope you enjoy getting to know one of our memorable guests.


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Monday, July 14, 2008

Christine Turner and Liz Dube have a Big Fan

Here is a scan of an event evaluation that we received regarding a wedding the Christine Turner booked, and Liz Dube ran, for the hotel. As you can see, the guests were VERY happy with both of them, the hotel, and their entire experience.

If you want to see a larger version, just click on it.


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Sunday, July 13, 2008

Hawthorne Hotel's Flags of the Week ~~ July 14 through 20, 2008

Here is this week's line up. As you can see, we have a number of special requests this week. If you have a special request, just let us know. We accept them on a first-come basis, from our guests.

Monday , July 14 ~~ South Africa and Rhode Island
Tuesday , July 15 ~~ Spain and South Dakota
Wednesday , July 16 ~~ Sri Lanka and Tennessee
Thursday , July 17 ~~ Belgium and Texas
Friday , July 18 ~~ UK and South Carolina (Special Requests)
Saturday , July 19 ~~ UK and New Mexico (Special Requests)
Sunday , July 20 ~~ UK and Massachusetts (Special Requests)

We hope to welcome you as our guest as the Hawthorne Hotel.


Saturday, July 12, 2008

Reynolds Wedding July 1958

We love to learn more about our guests and the history of the Hawthorne Hotel, so today's event, a wedding anniversary celebration of 50 years of marriage, which was launched right here at the Hawthorne Hotel, is just the kind of thing where we enjoy some extra involvement.

These photos, and the scan of the bill below, are of the Reynolds' wedding reception which took place in the Ballroom, while the Pickman Room was used for photos, just as it would be today.

In 1958, the bride and groom would change into "going away" clothing for their honeymoon. It happens that the "going away" photo was taken on the grand staircase, and gives us an interesting glimpse (including shag carpet, it seems) of the hotel during this period, as do the photos taken in the Pickman Room.

The most interesting thing to us, is the copy of the bill for the wedding, a whopping $499.88 for 155 people to have dinner and wine, that you see in the final image! If the relationship between the price of gold in 1958, and 2008 is any indicator, that same meal would cost Marjorie's father, Charles Walsh, $14,227 if they got married this year.

I hope you enjoy this look at the past, and present, at the Hawthorne Hotel.


Richard and Marjorie Reynolds, above in 1958, and below, today, July 12, 2008.

Richard and Marjorie with the wedding party, in 1958 (above), and with their daughter, Ellen, today (below).

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