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Santa Maria Sun / News

The following article was posted on November 1st, 2012, in the Santa Maria Sun - Volume 13, Issue 34 [ Submit a Story ]
The following articles were printed from Santa Maria Sun [] - Volume 13, Issue 34

Hobnobbing with Helen


The committee for the second annual Bippity Boppity Boo Ball, held on Saturday evening, Oct. 27, at the Santa Maria Valley Discovery Museum, cooked up a cauldron of creativity.

Visitors from The Other Side:
Todd (left) and Kari Edwards, a ghostly couple, haunted guests on Saturday evening, Oct. 27, at the Discovery Museum's second annual Bippity Boppity Boo Ball.

The Decorating Dream Team of Courtney Arensdorf, Leigh Collier, and Tania Kim transformed the Discovery Museum into a cute, clever, and fun party site complete with an Enchanted Forest. They carved up the museum space into little niche areas and filled it up with real pumpkins and giant faux lanterns.

There were about 140 assorted pirates, witches, convicts, and gypsies in attendance, along with some strange-looking men in white coats.

Wonder Woman made a dashing appearance with her escort, Batman. A very fetching Little Red Riding Hood managed to dodge the wolves.

A Trattoria Uliveto production:
Trattoria Uliveto's Alfonso Curti (third from left) and his serving crew handled the Discovery Museum's Bippity Boppity Boo Ball on Saturday evening, Oct. 27.

Brendan and Paula Reitsma won a best costume prize for their Party Boat get-up, complete with battery-powered lights. (Too cute! You had to be there for the full impact.)

The museum’s executive director, Kelly White O’Neill, looked positively heavenly in her angel costume, complete with halo—which is certainly well deserved; the Discovery Museum is bustling with what seems like an endless stream of innovative programs and educational delights for children.

Some of these programs tantalize adults interested in such topics as forensic science and astronomy.

Vittles from Trattoria Uliveto were passed around on trays. Fingers foods were stuffed pasta shells, large meatballs, sausage, corn chowder in little cups, bruschetta with ratatouille and goat cheese, shrimp, and tomato and mozzarella skewers. Pumpkin cheesecake squares and chocolate espresso bars satisfied those with a sweet tooth.

Angelic visitation:
Kelly White O'Neill (left) met up with JoAnne Plammer on Saturday evening, Oct. 27, at the Discovery Museum's second annual Bippity Boppity Boo Ball. O'Neill is the museum's executive director.

Pumpkin vodka shooters served in vials (from the lab of a mad scientist) were available at the bar, along with wine and beer.

Two local CEOs came to support the Discovery Museum. Jeff York of Coast Federal Credit Union and David Pratt of Santa Maria Energy sat at their company-sponsored tables. Both companies also sponsored a tree in the Enchanted Forest.

This was the first year for the Enchanted Forest, a “grove” of 14 Halloween “trees” decorated with gift cards and a wonderful assortment of goodies. Raffle tickets were sold—a dollar apiece—for the trees.

Board members Roy Reed (who came as a mad scientist; he’s also the wicked bartender at the O’Neills' home during the Holiday Candlelight Tour) circulated happily among the crowd.

Board member Jedd Van Gerpen of Santa Maria Energy (another board member) and Suzanne and Ron Levy were among the hearty revelers.

The Discovery Museum Dancers (aka the OAHS Dance Team), a group of 10 young lady vampires in silver tops (they bared their scary fangs!) performed for the pleasure of the guests. Nicely done, ladies!

If you want to hobnob with the Santa Maria Police’s Gang Suppression Team, you should have been a bidder at the live auction. Available only for action-oriented folks older than 18, this exciting and innovative live auction item will provide a four-hour (at least) ride-along with the police in a gang suppression squad car.

After a very successful live auction conducted by Sean Kelly, the dance floor filled up with ghostly apparitions, comic book heroes, and Mad Hatters.

Hobnobbing left before the clock struck 12, and so cannot tell you if, at midnight, everyone turned into large, wonderful-looking pumpkins.

Whatever, we know they had a good time.

If you want to hobnob with Helen, you may contact her at

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