Port Angeles, Sequim groups to host Oscar parties

A starry night is forecast. The big screen is bigger than ever before.

And at “Hollywood Nights,” Port Angeles’ Academy Awards celebration, and Sequim’s “A Night at the Oscars,” you can mingle with the glitterati without leaving Clallam County.

The fourth annual “Hollywood Nights” dinner and Oscar-viewing party will begin at 4 p.m. Sunday at the Vern Burton Community Center, 308 W. Fourth St., Port Angeles. Tickets are $60 to this Olympic Medical Center Foundation benefit, and the deadline to buy them is 5 p.m. today.

Outlets include Necessities & Temptations gift shop, 217 N. Laurel St., and the Olympic Medical Center Foundation office at 360-417-7144.

In Sequim, Readers Theatre Plus is hosting “A Night at the Oscars,” beginning at 3:30 p.m. Sunday, at the Elks Club, 143 Port Williams Road. A few tickets are still available at $35 each, including dinner. To make reservations, phone 360-797-3337 or 360-681-3862.

Dewey Awards

In addition to dinner and a live video feed of the television show, Sequim’s event will feature the first-ever Dewey Awards, presented to local actors, directors, playwrights and productions of the past year.

The awards, named for Port Angeles-based musical maestro Dewey Ehling, include honors for the best lead and supporting actors and actresses, best ensemble in a local theatrical production, best locally written play, best production, best musical and best director.

The Sequim Oscar night is a Readers Theatre Plus-sponsored benefit for the Sequim-Shiso Sister City Association, which helps fund Sequim students’ travel to Shiso, Japan, every October and cares for the Friendship Garden at the entrance to Carrie Blake Park, 202 N. Blake Ave.

No gala in PT

In Jefferson County, where the Port Townsend Film Festival has long hosted Academy Awards galas, the emphasis has shifted to other events.

Those include screenings of “Miss Representation,” a documentary about images of women in popular culture, at Fort Worden State Park’s JFK Building on March 7, and “Inuk,” the story of a 16-year-old Greenland boy, at Port Townsend’s Rose Theatre on March 10.

For details, visit www.PTFilmFest.com or phone 360-379-1333.

Back in Port Angeles, patrons are encouraged to pull out all the stops on their “Hollywood Nights” getups.

Costume prizes

Those who dress as movie stars can win prizes for the flashiest costumes and, as they step onto the red carpet, see themselves up on Vern Burton’s big screen. At 18 feet by 24 feet, the screen on which guests will watch the 84th Academy Awards is twice as big as last year’s, said Bruce Skinner, executive director of the Olympic Medical Center Foundation.

“Hollywood Nights” started out at the Masonic Lodge in 2009; it has since outgrown that venue, Skinner said.

The guests have been glamorous: Marilyn Monroe and Clark Gable, aka Mary Hunchberger and Eric Apablasa of Port Angeles, appeared, while Blake McCabe, also of Port Angeles, arrived as “The Dark Knight’s” Joker.

Only time will tell who will show this year.

For inspiration, there are nine movies just in the best-picture Oscar category alone: “Hugo,” “The Artist,” “War Horse,” “The Help,” “The Descendants,” “Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close,” Woody Allen’s “Midnight in Paris” and two with Brad Pitt, “Moneyball” and “Tree of Life.”

Dressing as a movie star isn’t required, of course; guests may choose to come instead in cocktail attire. And as they arrive on the scene between 4 p.m. and 5 p.m. Sunday, jazz vocalist Sarah Shea will sing, while chef Steve McCabe and crew will put the finishing touches on the evening’s repast.

The Oscar dinner features New York steak medallions, pork loin with apple glaze, Caesar salad and a dessert auction starring pumpkin pie, wildberry cheesecake, triple chocolate cake and pineapple upside-down cake, among other treats.

Notable guests this year include actress Lynda Day George of Gardiner, who starred in the original “Mission: Impossible”; Port Angeles resident Stanley Feldman, whose films include “Nixon,” “Amistad” and “Get Shorty”; and Craig and Gabe Rygaard of the History Channel’s “Ax Men” television series.

The guest of honor is Roger Oakes, a 1960 graduate of Port Angeles High School who went on to a long career as a physician here.

Oakes served as a combat infantry surgeon in Vietnam, then worked at the Olympic Primary Care Clinic during the 1970s and later became Olympic Medical Center chief of staff. He retired in August after 37 years of practice in Port Angeles.

300 expected

Skinner, meanwhile, expects some 300 guests at the Oscar party.

In addition to admiring one another’s outfits, watching the Academy Awards and having dinner, guests may take part in live and silent auctions, drawings and the guess-the-winners contest, which promises prizes for entrants who predict the most Oscar award winners in selected categories.

One could say that Olympic Medical Center, and its staff and patients, is the ultimate winner after these Oscars.

“Hollywood Nights” proceeds are directed, Skinner said, into purchasing equipment for the hospital’s obstetrics, radiology and cardiac services departments, as well as for its emergency room.

________

Features Editor Diane Urbani de la Paz can be reached at 360-417-3550 or at diane.urbani@peninsuladailynews.com.

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