About: Ruta Lee – The Legend
When the upcoming 2012 Angel View Angel of the Year, Ruta Lee, arrived for her photo shoot last summer with Angel View’s resident of year, Jacob Ibarra, she discovered the young man, who is immobile from the neck down, grinning with anticipation from his wheelchair. Ruta, in true form, wasn’t at all too shy to rush over to him and cup his face in her hands. “Hello handsome,” she loudly exclaimed, “we’re going to have such fun today!” Jacob beamed from ear to ear. For nearly an hour of enduring flashing camera lights, the two became best buddies. They both decided that the following months gearing up for Angel View’s February 20, 2012 Annual Luncheon would be a ton of fun.
RUTA LEE WAS BORN IN MONTREAL AND ATTENDED Hollywood High. She was signed byMGMas the youngest of the Seven Brides for Seven Brothers. Subsequently, she appeared in Funny Face with Fred Astaire and Audrey Hepburn,Witness for the Prosecution with Tyrone Power, and Sergeant’s Three with Frank Sinatra to name a few. She has also made over 2000 appearances on television shows. Her performances on stage have included playing well-loved leading lady roles such as Dolly, Annie,Molly, Peter Pan,Mame, Irene, Nelly, and Irma. She is highly acclaimed for her leadership role in The Thalians, a charitable organization committed to good mental health from pediatric to geriatric. She has been either chairman or president of The Thalians over 45 years. She has also served on several non-profit and government boards – too many to mention.
The multi-talented actress has been a long time supporter and fan of Angel View, a 58-year-old non-profit organization that serves nearly 100 young people and adults with mental and physical disabilities in 24-hour care homes in 19 locations throughout out the lower and upper desert. One of her passions is shopping at the Angel View resale shops, especially the one on Indian Canyon in Palm Springs.
“I have been a patron of Angel View stores for I don’t know how long…forever,” said Ruta Lee in the inviting living room of her charming mountainside home in Palm Springs. “Every time my husband, Webb, and I come into Palm Springs we go straight to the Angel View store. We’re like addicts. We just love shopping there for everything. I’ve never been a garage sale buyer. The draw of shopping at Angel View is that I can both feed my addiction of bargain shopping and do something good for Angel
View’s children along the way.”
Ruta cleverly recycles and transforms her vast collection of other people’s unwanted processions in a way that adds charm, balance, and pizzazz to her cozy Palm Spring home. Reflective of her dramatic flair, her rescued eclectic and attractive junk works in harmony with the surroundings like interior design magic.
“Once I was driving down Palm Canyon with my husband and saw this multi-colored little sundress in the window of the Angel View store,” said Ruta. “I just had to stop and see if it was in my size and get it no matter what. I took a look, it was my size and it was adorable – but it did seem familiar. It wasn’t until I got home when I realized that it had been an item that I had donated to Angel View. It is still hanging in my closet. Can you imagine, I purchased something that I had had given away.”
Ruta Lee will be honored on Monday, February 20, 2012 on President’s Day at the Doral Desert Princess Resort located on the corner of Vista Chino and Landau. Many of Ruta’s Hollywood peers are rumored to be heading to the desert to lend support to their friend. Angel View luncheon guests might find themselves rubbing elbows with the likes of Rich Little, Steve Rossi, Anna Maria Alberghetti, Florence Henderson, and many more.
Celebrity hostess for the day is Mary Ann Mobley. After serving her reign as Miss America 1959, Mobley embarked on what has been a long career in both film and television. She has been active in many charitable causes and was awarded the Outstanding Young Woman of the Year Award in 1966 by Mrs. Lyndon B. Johnson. Mobley appeared in several movies, including two with Elvis Presley in 1965, Girl Happy and Harum Scarum; and on such television shows as Fantasy Island, Custer, Mission: Impossible and The Love Boat, and the list goes on.
There is a wide-scope of exciting entertainment lined up. The consummate pianist Bill Marx welcomes guests into the ballroom; the Desert Youth Ballet under the direction of director Valerie Mahaber will perform with Angel View resident Maria Quintero for the prelude; and Ruta Lee, herself, will wow the crowd accompanied by Rush Robinson. Be ready for anything as surprise personalities are expected to take the stage for a little light roasting of their favorite gal pal.
Rona Barrett is scheduled to give the tribute speech. Rona is one of the best known pioneers and innovators in entertainment
reporting and publishing. She developed the first in-depth personal TV specials about the celebrities of film, television, music, sports and politics, and published a series of magazines on the entertainment industry for consumers and for industry insiders, including Rona Barrett’s Hollywood.
For more information, please call Michelle at 760-329-6471. Tickets are $75 per person.