Thursday, October 21, 2021

Auntie Mame Wows Calusa Garden Club

Jackie Purvis and Marsha Riss.

Jackie Purvis and Marsha Riss.


Living life to the fullest personified Auntie Mame’s approach to life.

“Auntie Mame” was a successful movie and Broadway play about Patrick, a 10-year-old orphan who comes to live with his rich, free-spirited, irreverent, madcap, eccentric aunt in New York City. It was there that Auntie Mame taught her nephew how to live life to the fullest.

It was the Calusa Garden Club’s year-end luncheon at the Marco Island Yacht Club and the club wanted something truly creative to mark the end of their season. They invited Kathleen Hawryluk, floral designer extraordinaire, aka Auntie Mame, as their guest presenter.

Kathleen did not disappoint, with six sets of costume changes that added flash and drama to her floral interpretations of Auntie Mame’s life during the Great Depression. Her creative designs delighted her audience, taking them on a runaway adventure with Auntie Mame.

Sandy Wallen, a garden club

Juliette Flasche and Nancy Traiser.

Juliette Flasche and Nancy Traiser.

member and floral designer, said it best: “We were all vastly entertained while learning floral design methods and tricks which will inspire us in our future designs. Kathleen’s floral designs were flamboyant, outlandish, fun and definitely out-of-the-box.” Fellow club member Jackie Purvis described Kathleen’s presentation as, “Engaging and inspiring.” It was a perfect escape from a busy season for the garden club members.

Kathleen Hawryluk is an accredited Life Flower Show judge, a member of the Naples Garden Club, the Gulf Coast Garden Club and Ikebana International #160, Director of District IX, Florida. She has been named 2016 “Designer of Distinction” by the Garden Club of Jacksonville. Moorings Presbyterian Church in Naples has named Kathleen its floral designer and samples of her “mass designs” are displayed each Sunday.

For more information about the Calusa Garden Club, visit them online at and on Facebook/Calusa Garden Club.

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