Upgrades Make Our Beautiful Building Even More So!

This past year or so has seen a few upgrades to our Clubhouse.  One of the most notable changes was to the lighting in the ballroom.  Those plastic fluorescent lights from the 1960s were replaced with hanging lights in a style that reflects the building’s architecture.  At the same time we replaced and upgraded the dangerously old electrical system, so all the lights, including new sconces on ballroom and balcony walls, can be dimmed.  

Now that the summer heat is on, we can all appreciate the new air conditioning (and heating) system installed for the first floor.  The Board is currently exploring having air conditioning installed for the upstairs.  It’s wonderful.

In the last week of July, new linoleum floors were laid in the women’s and men’s toilet areas and new high seat, low-flow toilets put in.  And that includes new plumbing too!

We also purchased and installed a laundry washer and dryer upstairs in the kitchen.

Perhaps not as noticeable is the refreshed paint on the outside of the building, including new lettering above the door.  As you all may know, as a registered historical building in Santa Monica, no changes in design can be made to the outside.  But the fresh coat of paint makes quite a difference.

Our new light fixtures in main ballroom.

We Are Making A Difference!

As part of our annual Charitable Contributions program, this year the Club awarded $1500 to A Window Between Worlds. Located here on the Westside in Venice, AWBW’s programs use art-making as a tool for empowerment and healing, impacting over two-hundred thousand adults and children who have experienced violence and trauma. They also train facilitators from around the country to use AWBW’s programs. Covering topics of trauma, oppression and cultural humility, these training sessions lay crucial groundwork for facilitators to create a foundation of safety for art workshop participants in their communities.  For more information about A Window Between Worlds, go to www.awbw.org.

AWBW facilitation trainees at completion of their training session this summer.


Arts program at UCLA Medical gets infusion from Club

On August 21, Becky Upchurch, Marcia Stein, and Tery Schooler presented Elaine Eastwood, Manager of Volunteer Services at UCLA Medical Center, Santa Monica with a collection of art supplies and a check for the Creative Arts Program.  The supplies were donated by our members and will be distributed to patients and their support people who are at the hospital for treatment.  The funds will be used to restock the crafts cart as needed.

(l to r) Tery Schooler, Marcia Stein, Elaine Eastwood and Becky Upchurch. (Aug. 21, 2018)

Art therapy has been shown to have a beneficial effect in reducing stress.  The Creative Arts Program is making a big difference in reducing the stress that comes for anyone being treated in a hospital, especially for cancer patients and their loved ones.

Many thanks to everyone for supporting this program.





“Hot Lips” Houlihan and her animals came to SMBWC!

Actress and animal rights activist Loretta Swit shared stories about her acting career and love of animals at a gathering of members and guests in the Club’s ballroom Tuesday, March 6 to introduce SWITHEART, a book collection of her new animal painting of rescued dogs, cats, domestic and wild animals.  Goats and roosters seem to hold a special place.

The former star of the long-running hit TV series M*A*S*H* was interviewed by Geoffrey Mark, singer and himself an author of a new book.

Mr. Mark, “walking encyclopedia of music,” opened with arrangements of standards and a talk about Ella Fitzgerald, the subject of his most recent book, ELLA: A Biography of the Legendary Ella Fitzgerald.

Ms. Swit’s career after M*A*S*H has included many stage and other TV show appearances and years of activism in support of her campaign against animal cruelty.

The name, she recounted, comes from the nickname a fellow M*A*S*H cast member gave her years ago.  She began drawing at a very early age and begged her mother to enter a drawing for an art contest she saw in a magazine.  Thrilled when she won, self-expression has defined her life.

Refreshments accompanied the afternoon event and book signing.

The book and set of 12 cards can be found on her website SwitHeart.com.   Proceeds from the sale of book, prints and cards go to her nonprofit, Animal Alliance.

Loretta Swit signed copies of her book SWITheART on March 6.

Loretta Swit book signing with Geoffrey Mark, March 6

Loretta Swit, also known as “Hot Lips” Houlihan in the long-running hit TV show M*A*S*H, and star of The Love Boat, will join us on Tuesday, March 6, 2018 at 4pm at the Club for a special book signing. The award-winning actress, animal activist and artist will talk with Geoffrey Mark about her new book “SwitHeart” and life after M*A*S*H.

Loretta Swit will sign copies of her new book “SwitHeart”

Geoffrey Mark, called a “walking encyclopedia of music,” will open with music and a talk on his most recent book, ELLA: A Biography of the Legendary Ella Fitzgerald.

He will then interview Loretta Swit.  Following the interview, both authors will sign their books during a free wine and cheese reception. Their books will be available for sale at the event.

The reception is free and open to the general public, so invite all your friends!

Music & Love Create a Lot o’ Valentines

Fans of Valentine’s Day came together for a day of Valentine making at the Club’s 9th annual Valentine Making Event, on Saturday, Feb. 3.   Open to the community, every age group–young children, teens, adults–enjoyed a day of creating cards for special people in their lives. All materials were supplied by the Club to make beautiful, quirky, scary, funny and lovely Valentine cards.  Supplies include cut and folded papers, stamps, doilies, miniature folded books, and hearts in every conceivable size and out of every possible material. Even envelopes for mailing! For the crafts-challenged, there were plenty of examples to get the creative juices flowing.

Proceeds from the event go to the Santa Monica Educational Foundation (SMMEF) and School on Wheels, which helps homeless children in the Los Angeles area.

“It was so much fun to see so many people from all over the Santa Monica area having a good time” said Susan Barry, SMBWC Board member and chair of the event. She noted the Club provides refreshments and background music to encourage artistic expression.  SMBWC Member Gerry Bryant provided inspiring and beautiful piano music throughout the day. Check out our video recap of the day below (click the play button if you can’t see the video)!

Club members volunteered on the on the day of the event to supplies stocked, and to set up and clean up after the event.  They also helped get materials ready at a casual brunch the Sunday before.

Susan is excited about next year’s event already with some new ideas.  She and her committee scout local stores all year to collect materials.  For more information about the event, to donate supplies, to make a financial contribution or to volunteer, contact Susan Barry at email hidden; JavaScript is required.

Orson Bean & Alley Mills Raise Money for UCLA Student Program


Orson Bean & Alley Miles entertained at the Club on Dec. 17, 2017 at an event that raised funds for the Club’s support of Next Generation of Doctors at UCLA.

On Sunday, December 17th, Orson Bean and Alley Mills entertained a curious and enthusiastic audience at our Club. Their delightful two-person show about their lives before they met and their successful 25 year marriage was filled with both heart wrenching moments and lots of laughter.  Orson and Alley kindly agreed to allow all proceeds from the event to be donated to the UCLA Next Generation Doctors program.  Through their generosity, and the generosity of our Club and its members, over $5,000 was raised which will support research in Women’s Health.

For those unable to attend, Orson Bean and Alley Mills will perform their show beginning in late January at the Pacific Resident Theatre in Venice.  If your New Year’s resolutions include having more fun, definitely attend this show!

SMBWC Supports Next Generation of Doctors at UCLA

One of the programs the Club supports is the Next Generation Doctors program at UCLA which is formally known as the Women’s Reproductive Health Research Program.  Graduates of the program are in medical schools, residency positions, physician assistant training, and other fields of service.

On October 16, Pat Webber, Marcia Stein, Addie Stalk, and Tery Schooler attended an event at UCLA where the current students shared their work, goals, and dreams.  Two patients shared their compelling personal stories and gratitude for the care they had received that was directly related to work that has been going on in the laboratory.  The evening was inspiring on many levels, especially knowing that our Club is truly making a difference in the lives and health of women now, as well as for women in the future.

As you may know from past newsletter articles, the goal of this program is to provide a unique educational opportunity for students who are planning careers in healthcare so that they have a better understanding of how critical research is in order for patients to receive the best possible treatments. The students volunteer in a research laboratory under the direction of Daniel Dumesic, MD and Gregorio Chazenbalk, PhD.  They actively participate in highly sophisticated research that is designed to improve health for women.  The two areas of focus are infertility and a condition known as Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) which affects 7-10% of women.  Their work has been published in prestigious medical journals and presented at scientific meetings.  Several of the publications and poster presentations acknowledge the Santa Monica Bay Woman’s Club for their support. For more photos and a video on this project go to http://obgyn.ucla.edu/photos-symposium-2017

Valentines Making Event – February 3, 2018

For the 9th year in a row, the Artists’ League will be organizing the very popular Valentine Making Event, on Saturday, February 3, 2018 – from 10am – 3pm!  As in years before there will be an amazing variety of supplies to make the most beautiful, quirky, scary, funny, and especially lovely Valentine cards for those special people in your life.  We will also have tables with special projects to stimulate your creative juices and for the young and young-at-heart there will again be a special stamp table. Still only $10 with all proceeds going to Santa Monica Malibu Educational Foundation (SMMEF) with matching funds given by SMBWC to School on Wheels, dedicated to tutoring homeless children.

For more information about this event, to donate supplies, or to volunteer to make this event a success, contact Susan Barry by sending us a message here.

$10 at the door. Cash or check only.

Also, or the first time this year, on Sunday January 28, 2018 from 10:00 to 2:00, members are invited to help with getting the craft supplies ready. More about this in the January newsletter.