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A “model” start to the season

Salvation Army in Santa Monica holds 32nd annual fashion show.

by Claudia Ruiz, Captain

June Piralta walks the runway at the Santa Monica Corps' fashion show. (Photo by Steve Garcia)

A Christmas tree with presents and the sound of familiar Christmas carols set the mood as civic leaders took the runway for the 32nd annual Christmas in September fashion show and luncheon, held by The Salvation Army Santa Monica Corps, under the leadership of Corps Officers Captains Mario and Claudia Ruiz. Sponsors were the Santa Monica Salvation Army Women’s Auxiliary and honored chair Louise Gabriel, president of the Santa Monica Historical Society.

Over 180 supporters filled the ballroom at the Doubletree Hotel to raise money for The Salvation Army and honor Santa Monica Elks BPOE 906 for their support on various projects throughout the years. Many vendors were on hand to allow guests early Christmas shopping, with a percentage going to the fundraiser.

Some of the civic leaders did double duty. Evelyn Guerboian of Readers Jewelers—who not only co-chaired the event, but also modeled along with her husband, Eddie—said, “Our fashion show attendees and sponsors are ‘Angels Among Us’ whose support allows The Salvation Army to bring joy to children and families at Christmas time.”

Comedian Bryce Wissel was the master of ceremonies while event organizer Monet Brock described the outfits and provided information about the models.

Along with the dozen female models were a couple of male participants. The Ruizes’ daughter, Emily, age 4, twirled down the runway several times. The show featured fall fashions from Macy’s.

At the end, the models took a stroll together, representing the following community groups: Kiwanis, Optimists, Saint John’s Medical Center; Rotary Club; National Charities League; Assistance League; Santa Monica Sister City program, YMCA; Police Activities League, UCLA Medical, First Private Band and Trust, Santa Monica Chamber of Commerce, Soroptimist, Santa Monica Breakfast Club.

Net proceeds, which were up over recent years, will fund programs for children of needy families, including the distribution of new toys during the holidays and various annual efforts supported by the Women’s Auxiliary.

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