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Spring Tea fetes 80 years of Strawberry Festivals
TULALIP — The Tulalip Resort’s Orca Ballroom was packed with women in fancy attire and colorful hats celebrating the Marysville Historical Society’s Ninth Annual Spring Tea and Vintage Fashion show on April 22.
This year’s theme was “A Berry Festive Tea: Celebrating 80 Years of Strawberry Festival.”
Attendees were invited to participate in a silent auction for the first portion of the afternoon and could bid on everything from a traditional flowered tea set to a German beer basket and local retail gift cards. The noon event allowed plenty of time for tea-goers to scope out the silent auction items, which filled more than 20 tables marked with strawberry colored balloons.
Table hostesses decorated more than 20 dining tables with decorative china, glasses and spring-themed napkins and tablecloths. The centerpieces of each dining table were the talk of the crowd as groups of people wandered throughout the room admiring the beauty, creativity and quality of each hand-made decoration. Screens on the high walls of the ballroom projected the names and images of the Marysville Strawberry Festival queens from each year — beginning from the festival’s inception in 1932. Two queens were present at the event, including 2012’s Briauna Hanson and 1934’s Bonnie Byers.
Prizes, including a hand-sewn strawberry decorated quilt, were raffled off to lucky winners at the end of the evening. Prizes were also awarded, following a vote, to those with the best hat and the best decorated table.
Members of the Marysville-Pilchuck DECA club played the role of “gentlemen servers” and offered hot tea, coffee, hot chocolate and treats to the attendees.
“I look forward to this every year,” said Joan Hemm, who has been coming to the Spring Tea events for four years. “The fashion, the food, the fun. It’s wonderful to come and be with all the ladies at the tables.”
That’s not the only reason she comes to the tea. “I like to dress up,” said Hemm, who sported a long red and white polka dot dress, with a thick red belt, green blazer, red peep-toes with polka dot bows, pearls, a hand-made strawberry-themed clutch and large strawberry-themed hat complete with strawberries on vines spilling over the side.
Event though her strawberry outfit was a hit, Hemm said that her favorite Spring Tea theme was the 2010 Women’s Suffrage tea. “The fashion show was incredible,” she said.
The Vintage Fashion show for this event included garments chosen from the Marysville Goodwill store to represent the 80 years of the Strawberry Festival. Each outfit captured both the era and the theme, with red and pink hues prevalent in the attire.
The Spring Tea and Vintage Fashion Show is held each year to raise funds to build the Marysville Historical Society’s new museum. The price of each seat is $25, though table hostesses who fill their tables are admitted for free.
“This is beautiful,” said MHS board member Meg Engelter. “Everyone has been so gracious.”
Despite having a clear goal in mind, to raise funds for the historical society, some attendees just enjoyed the time spent together.
“This is my fourth year,” said Michelle Cochron. “It’s just fun to be with friends and family.”