Almanac

Schools - February 17, 2010

Fashion show: Taking it to the 'Main Street'

by Jane Knoerle

"Main Street" is the theme of this year's Menlo-Atherton High School's PTA senior fashion show. Starring the Class of 2010, "Main Street" will be held Saturday, Feb. 27, in the school's new performing arts center.

It's "Main Street" with an edge, according to show co-chair Noreen Carruthers. The students wanted an urban theme and came up with Main Street as "embracing the diverse community that is M-A." she says

The cartoon-like logo for the show was designed by Jesus Blancas. The work of another artist, Blake Conway, will be shown in the center's lobby. Rapper Orlando Ferguson will be entertaining in front of the lobby.

More than half of the Class of 2010 is taking part in the show. There are 220 students modeling and 161 dancers, say co-chairs Pam Songer and Noreen Carruthers. "We are trying to involve the students as much as possible. This is a very spirited class and everyone wants to be part of it," says Ms. Carruthers.

There are several firsts for the "Main Street" show. It is the first fashion show in the performing arts center, which means performing on a stage instead of a runway. This is the first time the show has been held in the spring. Thirty years ago the event was called the "Pumpkin Lunch," a nice little affair for moms held in the school's J Building in October.

Another first is it's a catered affair, both for the traditional lunch and the evening performance. Ristorante Mataro, a new Italian restaurant in downtown Menlo Park, will cater the lunch, which will be held at 11:45 a.m., followed by a 1 p.m. show.

For the first time, tapas by Iberia restaurant in Menlo Park will be served at the evening fashion show. Pre-show tapas are at 6:15 p.m.; the show starts at 7:30 p.m. There is an additional 4 p.m. fashion show.

Tickets are $75 a person for the noon luncheon and show. Tickets are $30 for adults, $15 for students for the 4 p.m. show. Tickets for the evening show with tapas are $75; and for the fashion show only, $30 for adults and $20 for students.

Choreographer Nona Ybarra of Captivating Dance has been working with the students for weeks in creating dance numbers to appeal to a large audience, diverse in age and cultural backgrounds. Kim Selby is coordinating the fashion segments with a "downtown" theme. Set designer Jill Smith has created an urban backdrop.

Kimberly Carlisle of Palo Alto Visual Arts is making a DVD of the show that kids and parents can purchase as a lasting memory of the big night.

Proceeds from the show support programs of the M-A PTA

The M-A PTA fashion show committee includes: co-chairs Pam Songer and Noreen Carruthers, Nancy Beim, Denise Bullwinkle, Wendy Rohm and Janet Perez. Deborah Yoger is the volunteer coordinator of the hundreds of other volunteers working to make the show a success.

A bevy of boutiques and stores will be providing fashions for the show, including Rugby, Lucky, Gitane, PacSun, North Face, Tommy Bahama, GAP, Leaf & Petal, Cassis, Romi, Helm of Sun Valley, Mercer, Pickled, peacebank, Ladera Skateboards, Pink & Harmony, Skateworks, Men's Warehouse, Alys Grace, Patrick James, Milana C., Betsy Johnson, Nouvelle Bridal Boutique, Selix and Twenty6ix.

Carol Cruikshank, owner of Cassis and Leaf & Petal boutiques in Palo Alto, has taken part in the M-A fashion show for the past 14 years. Back in 2000 in an article in The Almanac she said, "From the first time our clothing was modeled in the M-A show, I have been incredibly impressed with the multicultural perspective and cheerful ambience of the event."

For information on ticket sales and show details, go to mabearspta.org.

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