January 13, 2003

SUNOLIANS FRAN AND LANNY REPLOGLE OF FENESTRA WINERY invite you to enjoy a weekend of special soups, breads and Fenestra wines, Saturday and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m., at their 11th Annual Soup and Wine Weekend.

If you're yearning to return to a simpler life -- less rich food, less expensive meals, fewer calories, Fenestra is offering a new look at making delicious, nourishing soups and breads. Chef Jim Rio from Gimanelli's, and other guest chefs present a variety of memorable soups. Come and sample the food and the award winning wines of Fenestra in the historic winery building. The $7.50 event charge includes a wine glass, buffet plate and recipes.

Fenestra Winery is located six miles from the Livermore Route 84 exit off I-680. The winery is open for tasting and sales every Saturday and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. For information, please call 925-862-2292.

IT'S THAT TIME AGAIN: Sunol Repertory Theatre is working on its 22nd season of melodrama madness, featuring "The Vile Veterinarian, or…How Much Is That Doggie with the Widow." Casting is complete and rehearsals have begun, which means it's time to cast the net for patrons.

This funny, punny play opens March 8 and continues Fri. and Sat. evenings through March 29. Patrons get to fund the fun, which, as always, benefits Sunol Glen School. They also receive the best seats before tickets go on sale Feb. 8 to the general public, get recognition in the program, or, if among the most generous, a place on SRT's Angels Scrolls on either side of the stage. Interested? Please call SRT Producer Diane Tiessen at 925-862-2020 for details.

THE PLAYERS: Director Phil Mumford has assembled a stellar cast. Stephan Doyle, who has been acting and directing with the group for 11 years, plays hero Hugh Candoit. His heroine, Polly Purina - hey, the story takes place in a pet shop - is being played by Suzanne Diers of San Ramon. Suzanne's new to SRT, but not to the stage - she's been performing with Pleasanton Playhouse for a number of years and can tap dance and sing her way around us all.

Suzanne came to SRT by way of Ted Tinges, her talented Playhouse cohort, who joined SRT three years ago. Ted plays villain Dr. Ray Beeze, the vile vet of the title. Get it? Ray Beeze…rabies? Uh, huh, that's how it's going to be. Also from Pleasanton Playhouse is Sue Marshall of San Ramon, who is actually a veterinarian! Sue is playing April May June, an opera singer with animal allergies, and we just can't stop laughing at the irony.

SRT's founder, Tom Harland, plays Mort Gudge, owner of the bank in the play's Woof Creek. Mort's foreclosing on poor pet shop owner Kay Nein, played by returning actress and long-time Sunolian Laurie O'Gara Walker. And get this - Laurie's a dog groomer!

The amazing Patti Balch will be chewing up the very scenery she designs and paints, as Kitty Litter, Dr. Beeze's catty nurse. Patti's been performing and making SRT's sets and costumes for 20. The cast also includes a trio of daffy sisters, Patti, Ida and Sheila Gree, portrayed respectively by me, Kari Davis, and Diane. Kari is a freshman at Foothill High School and started in SRT as a Sunol Glen second-grader.

And then there's sheep rancher Barbara Blacksheep, played by Sunol Glen eighth-grader Sarae Van Dyke, and stagecoach driver Charlie Horse, played by Sunol Glen grad and Foothill High Junior Nathan Harvey. Summer Sandlin, a freshman at Las Positas College, plays Cattle Clare, a cowgirl with a big heart. Sunol Glenners Jessica Christian and Mary Chambers play pet shop patrons Liza and Suzy, and Hayley Nielson and Becca Brown, share Sign Girl duties. SRT is especially proud to have so many Sunol Glen students and graduates involved this year.

SRT Treasurer and veteran character actress Louise Throop will participate in olios - between-acts entertainments - with Hayley and Becca and Foothill High students Monica Ignaitis and Erica Ellebrecht. And my, oh, my, I've run out of room for this week, so you'll just have to wait to learn about SRT's fabulous crew! Meanwhile, give Diane a call and get on that patron list, y'all hear?

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