Mature Friends Web Site

What’s New in December
Mailing Address:
Mature Friends
PO Box 21203, Seattle, WA 98111-3203

Every month, Mature Friends publishes the newsletter with updates on our activities. So, here is what we’re up to this month, such as traveling (both locally and internationally), attending arts events, playing bridge or pinochle, reading and discussing books, making investments, touring gardens, taking walks and going on hikes, choosing among many options for dinners and lunches, cooking, and tasting fine wines from our own state, from other states, and from around the world.


Goings On

Please click on underlined area for additional information.

Eating Date and Time Where
Lunch Out
Wed., Dec. 10, at 12:00 Noon Charlie’s on Broadway, 217 Broadway Ave. E
Christmas Lunch
Sat., Dec. 13, at 11:30 a.m. Robb’s 125th Street Grill, 12255 Aurora Ave. N
Dinner Out
Tue., Dec. 16, at 6:00 p.m. Robb’s 125th Street Grill, 12255 Aurora Ave. N
Monthly Potluck
Fri., Dec. 26, at 6:15 p.m., Food Contributions
Odd Fellows Hall
Wine Tasting
No meeting in December

Annual Banquet
Sat., June 13, 2015, at 5:30 p.m.
Womens’ Athletic Club
Annual Picnic
Sat., Aug. TBD, 2015, at 12:00 Noon
Woodland Park
Dinner for Six
Determined by participants In members’ homes
Playing Date and Time Where
A Better Club for Investing
Sun., Dec. 21, at 4:45 p.m. New Pandasia Restaurant, Interbay
Book Club
Tues., Dec. 9, at 7:00 p.m.
Per Pettersen's To Siberia
Board Meeting
Mon., Dec. 8, at 7:00 p.m.
Home of Bruce T.
Mon., Jan. 20, at 10:00 a.m. Alki Beach
Garden Tour
Gone dormant till Apr. 2015
Last tour of 2014
Theater and Music
Various dates and times
Check out these performances
Travel and Events
Various dates
Check our destinations
Bridge Club
Every Wed. at 7:00 p.m. Odd Fellows Hall
Pinochle Club
Wed., Dec. 3 and 17, at 7:30 p.m. Odd Fellows Hall
Camera Club
Waiting for a new leader. Any volunteers?
Odd Fellows Hall
Exercise Group
Every Wed. at 10:00 a.m. Odd Fellows Hall


Potluck Contributions

Dish to Bring Initial of Last Name
D, G, H, I, M, V
Hot Dish
B, E, L, R
A, N, P, T, Z
C, J, K, Y
F, O, S, W

1 For those assigned to bring an appetizer, please arrive early.

For everybody else, if you bring a vegan or vegetarian dish, please label it as such.

Want to see some Halloween fun? Follow these links:

Greeters Don McK. and Don S.

Don McK. Poses in His Highland Best

Vice-President Jeff Helping Jim with His Name Tag

Count Curtula with Lou

Cowboy John Slaves in the Chuck Wagon

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We discovered winter views and trails in our December hike at Discovery Park. Some of our hikers had not been there before, and for all of us the hike was a pleasant mix of woods, beach, and the lighthouse.

Discovery Park Hike

Dale, Ramon, Jim, Dennis, Garry, Bruce, Scott, George, and Harvey at Lighthouse in Discovery Park

January Hike along Alki Beach

Our hike in January will be another urban venue, the seawall along Alki Beach in West Seattle. There are spectacular views of the downtown skyline, the Olympic Mountains and Puget Sound. And you can soak up some history of the place where Seattle started in 1851.

We will start at Seacrest Park, 1660 Harbor Avenue SW. From there we will walk west along Alki Avenue. It’s about two-and-a-half miles to Alki Point, but we’ll be so busy talking and gawking on this level walk that you won’t notice it’s a five-mile round trip. Or maybe you will stop for refreshment at one of the cafes along the way. 

We will meet on Tuesday, January 20, at 10:00 a.m. at Seacrest Park, 1660 Harbor Avenue SW. Metro route 37 goes from downtown to Harbor Avenue and Alki Avenue, or you could even take the water taxi. It can be breezy along the waterfront, so dress for the weather.

Check Out Some of Our Previous Hikes

Dale, Garry, Ramon, Jim, Dennis, Bruce and Scott Explore Shoreview Park in Shoreline

Brian, George, Jim, Jerry, Ramon, and Dale Pause on the Snoqualmie River Trail

— Dale J.

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Garden Tour

The September Garden Tour was the last tour of the season. After that excursion, the Garden Tours went dormant for the winter, but will spring forth again in April 2015. Until then, the tour leader, Dr. John Wott, leaves you with a lingering taste of the last tour of the 2014 season.

Recap of September’s Garden Tour

On September 10, eighteen members of the Garden Group were treated to a tour of an iconic Queen Anne garden which surrounds a most unusual house.

Garden Group, September 2014

The owner has employed craftsmen to carve special features such as turtles, crows, babies, and even flowers on all sides of the house. The cornices and trappings are “one of a kind”. In addition he has accentuated an “over the top” color theme, which then he wants duplicated in the tiny garden surrounding the house. From its lofty turret, the house and garden witness daily screeching of tires as visitors suddenly stop to “gawk”!

We were treated to an intimate tour by Riz Reyes, who has been the gardener for the last four years. The owner wants everything to be “jammed together” with constant changing expressions of color to both compliment as well as accent the house. As soon as something fades, it is immediately replaced. And the more exotic it is, the better he likes it.

We began our tour curbside, with hundreds of plants immediately leaping toward us. Often pots of succulents are inserted into the landscape in order to provide a regional conflict of plants. The inviting front porch has carvings and railings all meant to frame the entrance, accented in gold paint. The paint is regularly renewed to keep everything looking bright and the intricate colors require superb detailing. A huge “planter box” shrouds the front window. If you merely stand in one spot, you can literally count dozens and dozens of different plants at once.

Colman House on Queen Anne Hill

The rear garden is quite sheltered and seems more like a tropical green house. Since is quite dark, many ferns and other low-light plants abound. The rear of the house has huge doors, which when extended, allow the owner to really “reach out to enjoy the garden.

We were told that the inside of the house is quite like a Victorian museum, so watch for it to “pop up” on fund raising auctions. It would well worth the price! But in the meantime, you can see almost everything in front from the street.

Garden Tours Go Dormant

The Garden Tours have gone into hibernation until next spring. Enjoy the fall and winter, and we will see you in April 2015 when the tours spring back to life.

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Travel and Events

This section tells you all about recent or upcoming trips planned for Mature Friends. Everybody who has gone on one of these trips has had a great time and was well taken care of. So, what are you waiting for? Sign up and join the fun!

Note: For those of you who are not members of Mature Friends, you must join the club before you can travel with us.

Silent Movie Night

A great time was had by all of the Mature Friends that attended the special showing of the 1925 silent movie Phantom of the Opera and the pre-movie happy hour at Ruth’s Chris Steakhouse. Due to the popularity of the silent movies with Mature Friends, we will look at additional happy hours when the winter season of silent movies starts.

Costa Rica in February

Our first international trip of the year will be Costa Rica in February. For details on the trip, e-mail Linda Lane at Cruiseworld or give her a call 206-284-0500.

Cruise to Ketchican — April 29

Take off work Wednesday afternoon for Alaska and return to Seattle on Sunday. Just two and a half days of vacation time required. Enjoy the Amtrak ride to Vancouver  and  four nights on a unique Ruby Princes cruise: Vancouver to Ketchican, returning to Seattle. The $475 cost includes the train trip to Vancouver and an inside cabin on the cruise ship. 

An outside cabin upgrade will cost only an additional $100. Budget $50 for tips plus your bar bill. A bit over a hundred dollars day for transportation, room and all you can eat.  Send your e-mail address to Linda Lane at Cruiseworld or give her a call 206-284-0500 for more details.

Reno Gambling Trip — May 12

For our annual gambling trip in 2015, Mature Friends return to Reno. The package includes round trip airfare and accommodations at the El Dorado Resort Casino. After gambling, take in a show or experience other Reno sights, such as the National Auto Museum and Riverwalk. Marlyce is also planning an optional side trip to explore historic silver towns. Watch your newsletter for more details and pricing.

Upcoming Trips and Events

Watch your newsletter in coming months for several Puget Sound area day trips that are being planned for 2015.

Past Trips

If you missed some of the trips organized by Mature Friends, you might be interested in reading about what you missed. Or if you went on any of these wonderful trips, you might be interested in reliving the fun and adventure. If so, this section is for you!


In April 2014, about twenty Mature Friends set off for an adventure of a lifetime — touring China! To read about the trip, all we did, all we saw, please click the link:

Tour of China

. . . and enjoy some pictures, too!

Spain and France October 12 – October 26

Twenty-four Mature Friends converged in Madrid on October 12, 2014, to begin their two week tour of Northern Spain and Southern France. We met our tour guide and that evening, gathered for a group dinner in the city. We had a surprise reunion at dinner with Jorge Roman, our genial tour guide from our 2010 Portugal-Spain tour, who had a tour group in Madrid at the same time. The next day was a half-day guided tour, led by a local guide, which included a tour of the Royal Palace as well as a bus tour through the city to sights such as the Madrid Bull Ring. The following day was free day for us to spend at our leisure. Some took a day trip to Segovia, others visited museums, art galleries and other sites of interest.

Next on our itinerary was the Basque country of Pamplona, with a stop at Burgos for lunch and a bit of sight seeing. Pamplona is noted for the running of the bulls, but October is not the bull-fighting season, so we were able to stroll around the city at leisure.

Bull Fence

This is supposed to protect us from the bulls?

A walking guided tour took us to the city center square, a busy site where one can meander off any number of side streets, to a food market reminiscent of Pike Place Market, to the walls of the old city and to the Cathedral of Santa Maria.

Then we were off to San Sebastián, on the Bay of Biscay.

City Hall, San Sebatian

Old Casino, Now City Hall in San Sebastián

A tour by a local guide took us to the massive sculpture on a rocky shore, “The Comb of the Wind” to the Miramar Palace, a some-time summer residence for Spanish royalty and on a walking tour through the city center, including another Pike-Place Market-like food market. Need it be said that we had perfect weather all this time and San Sebastián was at its best. Imagine people on the beach in mid-October!

Bilbao was a day trip from San Sebastián, and the attraction there is the modernistic-futuristic Guggenheim Museum. As you may have guessed, Frank Gehry, the designer of our own EMP museum, also designed the Bilbao Guggenheim. Many sculptures adorn the outside of the museum, such as the Tall Tree and The Eye by Anish Kapoor. The galleries exhibited many of the expected old-masters but there was also a huge Richard Serra installation reminiscent of his “Wake” at the SAM Sculpture Garden. There was much to see, so on leaving for lunch we received wrist ID bands, which allowed us to return for further perusal of the galleries. Back to San Sebastián and on to Toulouse, France with a lunch stop at Pau, France. Arriving in Toulouse by evening, we had a group dinner, featuring grilled salmon and cuttlefish and Spanish rice. The next day was a half-day guided tour, taking us to the Place du Capitole, the large pedestrian plaza facing the Capitole de Toulouse, which houses the city hall of Toulouse. Then a visit to the Basilica of Saint Sermin, a grand Romanesque edifice.

Then on to Carcassonne, France. Carcassonne was, perhaps, the highlight of the trip. The Cité de Carcassonne is the historic fortified city or citadel, dating some 2500 years ago to the Gallo-Roman period. The walls of the old city have been restored so that one can get an idea of what a walled-fortified city is like. The “modern” city grew out of the fortified city around 1240 and is the civic-economic-residential part of Carcassonne. Within the walls are the Château Comptal and Basilica of St. Nazarius and St. Celsus. Few people live in the citadel but the streets therein are lined with shops and restaurants to accommodate the tourists. The evening dinner was another group meal with cassoulet as the main course.

The trip began to draw to an end as we proceed to Barcelona with stops at Perpignan and Girona. 

Steve and Our Guide

Steve Poses with Our Handsome Bus Driver in Perpignan

Our tour in Barcelona was a delight for the architecturally inclined, in particular, for the works of Antoni Gaudi. First was a drive-by view of the Battló house, an existing building which Gaudi renovated with a striking façade. Next was his Sagrada Familia (Church of the Holy Family), which when completed will be the tallest structure in Barcelona. Construction began in 1882; it is still under construction with an estimated date of completion in 2026. Next was a visit to the Spanish Village, a collection of 117 replicas of representative houses from all regions of Spain built for the 1929 world exhibition in Barcelona. Expected to be torn down after the exhibition, it was retained due to its popularity with Barcelonans and tourists.

Two leisure days were left in Barcelona. Some went on a day trip to nearby Sitges, reputedly the Palm Springs of Catalonia. There were museums to visit, such as the Picasso Museum. At the end, most members returned to Seattle while some stayed on or went to other parts of Europe. And yet others boarded the Norwegian Cruise Line Epic for a cruise from Barcelona to Miami.

This was an exciting and informative trip. Our tour guide who accompanied us throughout the trip had an encyclopedic knowledge of the history of the area as well as of the people, such as the kings and queens, warriors and statesmen who shaped the region.

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Theater and Music

Tune into this section to find information on theater and music that might interest gays and Lesbians over forty, or that might interest anybody, for that matter

Ham for the Holidays — December 11

Mark you calendars for Thursday, December 11, Mature Friends night at the ACT theater for “Ham for the Holidays: Close Encounters of the Pork Rind,” starring Peggy Platt and Lisa Koch. This is the thirteenth installment of the semi-legendary holiday comedy-sketch series.

As a review in Broadway World stated:

I adore the twisted minds of these two comic geniuses, so if you’re looking for a slightly off-holiday diversion, you’ve found it!

The show starts at 7:30 p.m. at the ACT Theater. Tickets are $28.00 with a $5.00 discount to $23.00 for ages 65 and over.

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