On Saturday, February 19, God smiled on TALL and held back the rain just in time for about 60 ladies to share a beautiful afternoon in sisterhood and style! TALL presented lovely Spring Fashions from Stein Mart in Irvine and welcomed many new members to a year of image enhancement, adventure, education and enlightenment.

Renowned fashion commentator Margaret Frazier set the pace for the day and previewed the colors, designs and materials for this spring. The audience was enamored with the beautiful line and the models from their very own community. TALL secretary Dilek Yucel shared their bios with the group giving up a few secrets about the models. They were: Deniz Mustafoglu, Jon Atabek, Eren Alptekin, Sevgi Sweet, Funda Irvin, Burcin Simsek, Sebnem Demir and Demetra Mustafoglu. The music for the afternoon was arranged by Ugur and Tunc Aksoy much to the audience’s delight.

A special thank you goes to Zinnur Guvenc and Dilek Yucel for co-chairing the event and organizing the delicious delights. Sincere thanks goes to all who baked the delicious treats of the day. The buffet tables looked just like a five star restaurant. Our heartfelt gratitude we extend to hostess Elcim Alpan for opening her lovely home to TALL for the Tea/Style Show event.

All donations from the day will go to our Blind Children’s Charities here and in Turkey. They are the Palandoken School, Gaziantep Sehitkamil School for Visually Handicapped Children, The Long Beach Turkish School, The Maras Blind School and the Santa Ana Blind Children’s Learning Center. On this afternoon, a check for the Santa Ana Blind Children’s Learning Center was presented to Carolyn Baker, former administrator at the school, for thirty teens to attend MEDIEVAL TIMES with their Peer Group as a special outing for the class. They were thrilled for the gesture.

TALL exists to enhance the image of Turkish Americans here and in Turkey through involvement in local and international charities. We meet Turkish and American women’s interests through educational and social programs. We network the two communities and increase the visibility of Turkish Americans and enhance our image and that of Turkey’s. This way we prove that we are main stream and have a place in our communities dispelling many television and press propelled fabrications told of us throughout history with no updating. IT IS TIME FOR THE WORLD TO KNOW OF THE GOODNESS OF TURKS!

Why should TALL be important to you and your friends? Because, 1-we make a difference for a better life for the children we support, 2-this is the very best advertising we can do for the Turkish American community to send a message that Turks are an important immigrant group in the US with much to offer given the chance, 3-we give Turkish American women something worth volunteering for and at the same time make it a joy to participate in cultural, educational and social events that we plan for our members and friends.

TALL has recently joined the Assembly of Turkish American Associations to show support for the efforts in Washington, D.C.

TALL is forging ahead with its plans for a great 2005. An upcoming major event, THE BLACK AND WHITE BALL is being planned for April and promises to be an elegant and exciting event for the community. WE plan to shake the ground a little with our keynote speaker, Billy Hayes of MIDNIGHT EXPRESS fame as he tells the TRUE story of his time in Turkey and shares his love of the country and its people now that Producer Oliver Stone has finally apologized to the Turks. Surprises abound for the evening and all attending MUST arrive in tuxedos and long formal evening gowns.

On June 5, “A Nite on the Bosporus” is also under way and from the grapevine we hear it will be even more fantastic than last year’s incredible evening. A larger boat has been hired to accommodate more patrons and once again the fine food from Elcim Alpan’s catering and some marvelous music will be duplicated. Auction items and gift baskets are coming in by the dozen. Come one, come all. Enjoy a taste of Istanbul before summer truly arrives!

For information and ticket sales to upcoming events, please send your emails to TALL@excom.atasc.org or contact our treasurer, Arzu Simsek at (949) 294-5228 or our president Asuman Yilmaz at (949) 378-6051.

For those who could not attend for one reason or another, including the horrible rain, please don’t forget to mail in your membership dues. It remains $50 for adults and $25 for students. All paid members may submit recipes and photos for the TALL Cookbook which is being organized now for holiday sales in December.

And please don’t forget,


Remember International Turkish Hospitality Day, March 4 th and share your heritage, cuisine and love of Turkey proudly with a neighbor.

Demetra Mustafoglu
Founder, Past President