''Please let the quality of your gift reflect the quality of our event.'' That's the motto of the Margarita Ball, an annual holiday mega party/toy drive.
For many of the approximately 2,500 Central Floridians who poured into the Peabody Orlando for the eighth ball Friday night, "quality"' equals ''trendiness.''
That's sure to delight the underprivileged children who wake up Christmas Day to find the Bart Simpson
and Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles dolls that abounded at the party. Also adding to the mountain of toys
topped by a Christmas tree in a Peabody ballroom were traditional favorites like Big Wheels, Barbies and
The ball, which takes its name from the cocktail served liberally throughout the evening, is presented by a
group of 25 area professionals who call themselves the Orlando Margarita Society. Admission is by
directors' invitation and the contribution of one unwrapped toy per person.
Since this year's party was held just one day after Thanksgiving, attendance was a bit lower than at
Margarita Ball '89. But Margarita Society directors such as insurance and finance executive Frank
Blackard, TV production and syndication company owner Reed Boardman and attorney John Overchuck
were still all smiles. They mingled with friends, enjoyed the mariachi and dance bands and admired
goodies they would help distribute Saturday.
Among the others partaking in the camaraderie and good will of the event were Mary Ann Dean, manager
of the Civic Theatre of Central Florida; Fred Raffa, professor of economics at the University of Central
Florida and his wife, Jeanie, a writer; attorney Beth Ferguson;