Red feathers, sparkles, sashes and all sorts of beautiful attire adorned the red hats of the Mecca Marvelous Mamaz who hosted the Spring into Summer Party on May 31. The party attracted approximately 140 women wearing red hats and purple dresses to the Ponoka Branch of the Royal Canadian Legion to have a rousing good time.
The event was hosted by one of three Red Hat groups in Ponoka, the other two are the Red Hot Girls of the Globe and the Red Hot Hotties. There are over 40 Red Hatters in Ponoka who meet to have a good time and get to know new friends.
“We have raised our kids, we did our charity work, we had our jobs and now it is time for us,” said assistant Queen of the Mamaz Bev Woyen.
The day was filled with shopping, socializing, eating and entertainment as the Legion was filled with a sea of red and purple. They had eight different vendors set up selling purses, makeup, lotions, soaps and items especially for the Red Hat women. Jack in the Box and Hazel Rust provide hilarious entertainment for the women well into the afternoon.
Delphine Svenningsen is the Queen of the Mamaz and thinks the group is a great way to get out and enjoy yourself, care about each other and support one another in times of need. As she addressed the group she said it was a disorganized organization and was looking to have some fun.
Marilin Bourassa from Edmonton thinks what they do just comes natural.
“We do what women do best, get dressed up.”
The organization is for ladies over 50 and anyone who is a member younger than that wears a pink hat when they go out. The ladies do like to go out and have fun, they meet once a month going out for coffee, belly dancing lessons, boat cruises, card nights and just enjoying each others company.
The Red Hot Hotties theme some is girls just want to have fun and they think they all have a lot in common and enjoy the group.
“There’s no agenda, we don’t have to fundraise, we don’t have to take minutes and it is just a lot of fun,” the group said together.
The Red Hat Society started 10 years ago when Sue Ellen (the Queen Mother) bought a red fedora at a thrift shop because it was cheap and dashing, Later she read the poem ‘Warning’ by Jenny Joseph (When I am an old women, I shalt wear purple with a red hat which doesn’t suit me) and gave a red hat and the poem to a friend for her birthday. They continued to give out the gift to friends and they started to go out together in their red hats and purple dresses. Soon there were too many people out for tea and she encouraged others to start their own Red Hat Societies, the group blossomed to Florida, other states and into Canada.
At the event in Ponoka there were women from Edmonton, Lacombe, Rimbey, Edson, Olds, Bentley, Camrose, Leduc, Millett, Red Deer, Sherwood Park and Sylvan Lake.
The ladies who gathered in Ponoka were on a mission. It was to wear their red hats and purple dresses, which some would say would not match, with pride and so they did. Along the way they made new friends, rekindled old friendships and couldn’t stop laughing and having fun.