Claudette and Jack Rourke of Allen Park (right) are honored at a benefit dinner dance for the Henry Ford Estate – Fair Lane April 16 at The Henry Hotel. Shown with the couple are their son, Kevin, and his wife, Karen, also of Allen Park. Claudette Rourke received a bouquet of yellow roses, and her husband, a Ford Model-T pin from honorary chairman of the event Edsel B. Ford II. The event raised $445,000 for the restoration and preservation of Fair Lane, the former home of Clara and Henry Ford.
By Evelyn Cairns
Claudette and Jack Rourke of Allen Park, long-time supporters of the Henry Ford Estate – Fair Lane, were honored by Edsel B. Ford II at the annual benefit dinner dance for the estate April 16 at The Henry Hotel, formerly the Ritz-Carlton.
Ford thanked the couple for their continued support as volunteers and donors since the inception of the fund-raiser 23 years ago. The dinner dance has raised a total of $6.1 million for the restoration and preservation of the estate. The black-tie event raised $445,000.
Ford presented Jack Rourke with a miniature Model-T pin, and Claudette Rourke received a bouquet of yellow roses.
The evening included a dialog between costumed re-enactors representing Clara Ford and Eleanor Ford about their respective residences, Fair Lane, in Dearborn, and the Edsel & Eleanor Ford House in Grosse Pointe Shores.
Fair Lane was the home of the Henry and Clara Ford, and the Edsel & Eleanor estate was the residence of the Fords’ only son, Edsel, his wife and their children, Henry II, Benson, William Clay and Jose-phine.
Edsel B. Ford II is the great-grandson Henry Ford and the son of Henry Ford II. Edsel Ford II and his wife, Cynthia, were honorary co-chairmen of the dinner dance.
Patrons for the event gathered before the dinner dance for a preview cocktail and hors d’oeuvre party after which they were led to the dining room by mem-bers of the Plymouth Fife & Drum Corps.
The dinner menu included Grilled Filet with Rosemary and Caramelized Onions, Chive and Mascarpone Whipped Potatoes, Pan-Seared Baby Carrots and Zucchini, and Chocolate Mousse Trio Tim-bale with Raspberry and Chocolate Garnish.
Relay for Life slated for Saturday
Dearborn Mayor John O’Reilly Jr. will be the speaker at the opening ceremony for the American Cancer Society’s Relay for Life of Dearborn at 10 a.m. Saturday at the Ford Community & Performing Arts Center, 15801 Michigan Ave.
Tents will be set up to accommodate participants in the 24-hour relay, during which people will take turns walking laps.
The day will include food, fun activities and demonstrations. It will conclude with a luminaria ceremony in honor of cancer survivors and in memory of loved ones.
For more information, call chairwoman Denise Abdullah at (313) 522-8785, email her at [email protected] or go to www.relayforlife.org/dearbornmi.
Coming up . . .
April 29 — Overture Society of Southern Great Lakes Symphony “Spring Songfest” featuring Lara Semetko, SGLS Downriver Idol finalist; Jessica Colvin, Downriver Idol semifinalist; Her Hymns; the Mood Swing Duo; and a barbershop quartet; tickets, $20, are available by calling (734) 671-0170.
April 30 — Michigan Lymphomathon; at Lower Huron Metro Park, 17845 Savage Road, Belleville (the park office number is (734) 697 9181); 5K walk for survivors of lymphoma, their friends and commu-nity and corporate teams; registration will take place from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m.; the walk from 10 a.m. to noon.
May 2 — Deadline for entering Zehnder’s Mother of the Year contest; the winner will receive Zehnder’s of Frankenmuth Mother’s Day dinners for up to 10 family members, an overnight package for four at Zehnder’s Splash Village Hotel & Waterpark and a recognition plaque; to enter, send a poem of 50 words or less telling why the nominee should be selected as Mother of the Year to Zehnder’s Mother of the Year, Zehnder’s of Frankenmuth, 730 S. Main St., Frankenmuth, MI, 48734.
May 5 — Spring Garden Party of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra Volunteer Council; 6:30 to 9 p.m. at the home of council President Janet Ankery in Beverly Hills; an outdoor container gardening demonstration by Bordine’s will be featured; tickets are $35 per person; casual attire is suggested; for more information, call (313) 576-5154.
May 10 — Reception introducing Tammy Trudelle of Wyandotte as the new executive director of the Downriver Council for the Arts; 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. at the Wyandotte Arts Center, 81 Chestnut; refreshments will be served; the public is invited, and there is no charge.