Francophiles celebrate the advent of their 2019-2020 season of events

Steve Johnson, LuAnn Johnson and Carie Scalzo competing in the waiters race.

Steve Johnson, LuAnn Johnson and Carie Scalzo competing in the waiters race.

Pat Smith

With the 2019-20 calendar of events finalized by the planning committee, the SaddleBrooke Francophiles are looking forward to their twentieth year of celebrating the culture, foods and wines of France and everything French that goes along with it. Our last season’s finale was a “Paris in the Park” event at the home of Ralph and Carie Scalzo. Besides the myriad of tasty treats prepared by our members, two very French activities were enjoyed by all – a game of boules, the French version of bocce ball, and the waiters’ race where contestants competed by walking a set route while balancing a tray of treats and glasses of wine. After four heats to determine the winner, Carey Ricard was the champion waiter! Great fun!

Our upcoming season of events commences with a blind wine tasting and cheese party on Sept. 28. Several wines will be provided, and the members will get to guess the particular wine served. Then, on Oct. 31, Francophiles will be dressing up in French-themed costumes for the Halloween party, and prizes will be given to the most creative costumes.

Nov. 13 will feature the annual Julia Child/Jacque Pepin Progressive Dinner with a fun addition – a scavenger hunt with prizes given to the winners who find the listed items the most quickly. Our holiday brunch will take place on Dec. 15, with guests preparing special dishes to celebrate the season.

The French Bread/Puff Pastry Extravaganza will take place on Jan. 18, with photos taken of members to be displayed at our Heritage Day Celebration on Mar. 21. Then, February will feature two exciting events: the annual Southern Arizona Arts & Cultural Alliance (SAACA) event will take place at the Tucson Botanical Gardens on Feb. 1, and a French/English subtitled film and a Valentine’s day-themed chocolate party on Feb. 15.

Our first ever Heritage Day celebration will be on Mar. 21, and we will close out our season of events on Apr. 18, with the “Fête du Citron.” Mylinda Guillen will be the chairperson for the Diners a la Maison on Mar. 11 and Apr. 29.

The SaddleBrooke Francophiles is a social organization that celebrates the foods, culture and “all things French.” Speaking French is not required. For more information, contact Pat Smith at  520-825-2409. Vive la France!