Sorry for the radio silence, but it has taken a few days for my team to work on the arrangements and for me to second-guess all decisions. However, the logistics are now (mostly) set.
The memorial gathering will be held on Saturday, July 14th, from 10am to noon-ish at the Pleasant Hill Senior Center (233 Gregory Lane, Pleasant Hill, CA) in the Chateau room. This room can seat 255 people, so anyone and everyone who wants to attend is welcome. The center is adjacent to a park, so those with kids will have room to roam before and after (and during, if necessary). As stated before, there will be some scheduled speakers. If you would like to be one of them, please let me know by texting me, e-mailing me, or adding a comment to this post. We will be recording the event and transcribing it into a memory book for the family to keep.
And since I mentioned the memory book, while everyone will likely not have a chance to speak (over 100 people even at just 5 minutes each turns into more time than we have, and violates the bladder test), everyone can and should come with a memory to be added to the book. Simply write down a favorite memory of her, anecdote about something interesting that happened with/be or a paragraph about how she affected your life. These will be collected into the memory book, along with pictures and what is shared at the memorial.
Again, no dress code and no pressure. It being July, it is likely to be HOT. If it is hot enough, you are likely to see me wearing shorts and a Hawaiian shirt. You are welcome to do the same. If you want to show Marcelle's power colors, dress in black & red. There will be water at the memorial to keep everyone hydrated (or re-hydrate those who are crying). Bring your own hanky or Kleenex. Bring a picture of Marcelle, bring something for the memory book, but most of all bring yourselves and join in a celebration of her life.
After the memorial, those who wish to are invited back to our house for some food and Marcelle's Pop-up Boutique. I did not realize that Marcelle was related to Imelda Marcos, but after having gathered all of her stuff from the nooks and crannies of our home, I think she must be. Those of you who wear a size 10-12 (in clothing) and size 9-10 shoe can seriously augment your wardrobe, but there is also her carefully selected slew of scarves, collection of coats, jangle of jewelry (I made that up) and bundle of bags (purses, etc). She wanted these things to go to people for whom it would mean something and (hopefully) many of you would like a memento of Marcelle to take home with you. Anyway, the gathering at our house will last until I can't take it any more and kick you all out. Similar to how the open-house worked, many folk will need to congregate outside, where it could be any where from 60 degrees and windy to 106 degrees and sweltering. Check the weather and come prepared. We will be serving some food and non-alcoholic beverages; we won't be providing alcohol and I ask that you don't bring your own.
I think that is it for now. Check back regularly for updates. The date, time and venue are set, but everything else could change with a moments notice.
I hope to see most of you in a couple of weeks. Thanks for caring.