The Scoop: PEN's Annual Wine Tasting Event

If you like wine and you like to support your local public schools--PEN's Annual Wine Tasting Event is the place to be.

Living in Altadena, we are all well aware of the perception of PUSD schools (valid or not).  But PEN (Pasadena Education Network) is an organization established to assist parents and the community to become acquainted with and get the facts about PUSD schools.  Initiated several years ago as a grassroots organization by a handful of parents, PEN’s goal is to give prospective PUSD parents factual information to assist in making a solid educated choice in their child’s education. 

PEN has now grown into an organization with board members (PUSD parents) and continues to develop to meet the needs of PUSD families.  In an effort to continue providing quality programs, PEN is hosting its annual Wine Tasting fundraiser on March 24th from 5:00pm – 8:00pm at Podley Properties’ historic building (897 Granite Dr., Pasadena).  According to Program Director, Susan Savitt Schwartz, “the funds raised will help support our outreach to families, parent education, and networking programs”. 

For $75 partake in tasting wines from around the world, procured and served by sommelier Russ Meek, formerly of Red, White, + Blues.   The John Muir High School Jazz Quartet will provide the appropriate ambiance while you enjoy appetizers and desserts prepared and served by Blair Culinary Academy.  The Silent Auction will entice you with great items like VIP passes to the Ellen Show, hotel and restaurant certificates, child’s birthday party at a Pasadena Police Station, behind-the-scenes tour at LA Zoo, LA Phil tickets, and much more!

In addition to all the fun, join PEN and the community in honoring three public education advocates who are true PEN “role models”:  Bill Podley, Dawn O'Keeffe, and Blanca Siebels.  According to Savitt Schwartz, “Bill is a longtime Pasadena Educational Foundation Board member and a strong advocate for business community partnership with PUSD.  Dawn and Blanca are both outstanding parent volunteer leaders who exemplify PEN's ideal of active family participation in public education for the benefit of all students.

Dawn has four children, three of whom graduated from PUSD schools and are now in college, while the fourth is a high school student at Blair International Baccalaureate School.  She has helped to create a strong community at Blair—one that encompasses parents, students, teachers, and community partners.  She also serves on the Board of PEF (Pasadena Educational Foundation) and most recently is working with her husband and two other parent-filmmakers to produce a documentary called Go Public: A Day in the Life of PUSD.

Blanca is a mother of three children currently attending Webster, McKinley, and Blair.   She has worked hard to strengthen and enhance the partnership between parents of children with special needs and the PUSD's Special Education Department.  Like Dawn, she is a tireless advocate for all PUSD students”.

In need of childcare in order to attend this fabulous event?  Kids Klub of Pasadena is providing complimentary childcare for PEN members, and for a nominal fee to non-members for children 6 months to 12 years old.  A dinner is available for an additional $3.25 - $4.25 depending on the age of the child.  For more information about Kids Klub arrangements please contact Kids Klub’s Evening/Weekend Director directly at (626) 795-2501. 

To purchase tickets, become an event sponsor, or for more information about PEN’s 4th Annual Wine Tasting, or to learn more about PEN’s programs, please visit their website.  Cheers!


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