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Potomac Women of Legal, Artistic and Musical Note

“It’s nice to be recognized,” Tara Kalagher Giunta remarked when questioned about the “Star of the Bar” award she received from The Women’s Association of Washington, D.C.

Giunta, a Potomac native, was among 20 women honored at a dinner reception in the atrium of the Homer Building, Washington. Women’s Bar Association president Joanne Young presented the award to 20 women lawyers who are in leadership positions in private practice or corporate or federal offices.

A member of the Washington office of Coudert Brothers, a New York-based firm with 30 world-wide offices, Giunta heads the telephone communications, media and technology practice groups, and advises companies in those industries in commercial and corporate compliances and regulatory legal areas.

The “Star of the Bar” award is given annually to women attorneys in Washington who are in leadership positions. Henrietta Holsman Fors, director of the U.S. Mint, addressed the 2004 recipients and nearly 200 guests.

A member of the Coudert Brothers firm since 1996, Giunta earned a J.D. at Catholic University School of Law. The daughter of Mary and Jack Kalagher of Potomac, she is an alumna of Stone Ridge Country Day School, Bethesda. She is married to Kenneth Giunta, and the couple has three children.

Ride a Painted Pony

Collectively, you may call them “ponies,” but in reality they are the size of horses.

“For the sake of alliteration, we are calling them ‘Potomac Ponies on Parade,’” said Ann Martinez, one of a group of 14 Potomac artists who will paint fiberglass models of horses to eventually be placed in strategic Potomac locations.

Move over, pandas of Washington and cows of Harrisburg, the “ponies” are coming to Potomac.

“We will have an unpainted one here in time for the Oct. 30 Potomac Day Parade,” Martinez said.

The painted pony project is sponsored by “PAinT” (Potomac Artists in Touch) to benefit local charities and PAinT community programs. One-third of the profit will help defray costs of the project. The Potomac Chamber of Commerce is assisting with the promotion of this effort.

Martinez estimated it costs about $3,600 to procure and paint each horse. PAinT, a nonprofit organization, is seeking sponsors to support the endeavor. Asked how the group will get sponsors for the horses, Martinez replied, “We will beg!” She said they already have a $20,000 sponsor. This would be considered a good leg up on any horse.

There are several categories of sponsorships ranging from $15,000, the platinum pony, to $1,200. Sponsors of the top categories select the charitable beneficiary and may also have some input into the artistic theme. Each horse will be mounted on a 15-inch-high pedestal. The sponsor’s name will be installed on a bronze plaque.

Present plans include that all of the horses are to be painted and on display by October 2005. Prior to acquiring their painted motifs, the horses will be paraded down River Road in the buff. “Every town that has engaged in sculptural art has paraded the unpainted horses to welcome them to the area,” Martinez stated. She expects the remaining 19 molds to arrive next spring.

Arrangements are under way for a black-tie dinner and auction, where each of the finished horses will go on the block. Chances are there may be a painted pony in your future.

In addition to Martinez, PAinT artists volunteering their talents for the project include Mary Moltz, Yolanda Prinsloo, Cherry Dearie, Martha Spak, Nancy Nesvet, Terri Cunningham, Neena Birch, Karin Colton, Judith Bourzutschky, Claire Howard, Colette Calilhanna, Kaushika Patel and Felisa Federman.

Shockey’s “Cinderella”

To everyone in local theater groups, Marilyn Shockey’s numerous talents — writing, composing, acting and costume designing — come as no surprise.

Those fortunate enough to have children or grandchildren to shepherd to Adventure Theatre’s production of “Cinderella, or A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Ball” will quickly join the ranks of her admirers.

Shockey has written and produced another winner to her credit with this outrageous spoof on the old classic. Designed for the pre-teen set, it also has plenty of asides to entertain the chaperons.

Her previous hit at Adventure Theatre, “What’s a Wolf To Do,” a musical spoof on “Three Little Pigs,” was published by Dramatic Publishing and is used nationwide.

A prolific writer of musicals, Shockey’s “Mother Goose’s Adventure” will be staged at Adventure Theatre in historic Glen Echo Park later this fall. Meanwhile, Cinderella will dance her way across the stage on Saturdays and Sundays until Oct. 17.