~ The Social Diary ~


A Look Back at the Best Events of 2006 -

BBQ at Ballena Vista Farm

margo schwab

photo credit - Jeremiah Sullivan

February 8th , 2007
The Social Diary Columnist & Photographer Margo Schwab

When a very coveted September invite arrived for a BBQ and hoedown, who could say no. This wasn't your typical country BBQ party. This was an invitation to Donald and Karen Cohn's spectacular and nationally acclaimed 220 plus acre Ballena Vista Farm in Romona. This is the farm where winning studs, mares and foals enjoy training, rehabilitation and basically life at the top. Ballena Vista Farm's motto is "personal attention is only the beginning,'" and they aren't kidding.

sheryl white with don and karen cohn

Sheryl White with Hosts, Donald and Karen Cohn

Mariachis and margaritas greeted a who's who consortium of guests. Iris and Matthew Strauss, Val and Harry Cooper, Audrey Geisel and her 'outlaw' trench coated man Alex Butterfield, Lee Clark and Jerry Pikolysky, Lael and Jay Kovtun, Sook and Ron Hansen, Robert Gleason, Margo Schwab wearing a squash blossom necklace and Scott Johnston, Deni and Jeff Jacobs, Sheryl and Harvey White, the Cohn's son Jono, Jeanne Jones and Don Breitenberg, Jennifer and Richard Greenfield, Barbara Beltaire, Colette and Ivor Royston, Noni and Drew Senyei, Kathleen and Tim Kruer, and so many more.

Jeffrey Strauss of Pamplemousse Grille catered the fancy eats. Guests also gambled and joined the hoe-down. Sheryl White might just have had the fanciest cowbooted footwork on the dance floor. Others kicked back and enjoyed watching.

And there was lots to see including the Cohn's Ralph Lauren perfect ranch house with hilltop vistas to all points, to those trying bravely to take on the mechanical "bull." "Bull" riders included Barbara Beltaire, Drew Senyei and Scott Johnston. All had a hoot, but everyone concluded that they should keep their respective day jobs.

Resident Champion Horses, Beau Genius, Deputy Commander and Sea of Secrets concurred.

And The Social Diary likewise concurred with the multitude of fun guests, Karen and Don Cohn know how to throw one great BBQ at their Ballena Vista Farm.

barbara beltaire

Barbara Beltaire braving it on the 'Bull' ** A table setting

margo schwab riding a horse, a fake horse

Margo Schwab in the spirit ** Ivor and Colette Royston with guest

pamplemousse grille catered barbequemargo schwab with donald cohn

Pamplemousse Grille catered buffet ** Margo Schwab with Don Cohn

guests gambling

The Poker Game

Below - The Fabulous Ballena Vista Farm Ranch House

dining roomliving room fireplace

bedroom in rustic style

living room with pool tableview from the living room to the mountainside

squash decorations at the door

scott riding the bull

Scott Johnston showing his bull 411 and 911 skills

richard and jennifer greenfield with noni senyei

Richard and Jennifer Greenfield with Noni Senyei having a hoot watching Drew Senyei (below) showing his cowboy skills

drew senyei riding a bull


* Margo Schwab has produced, written, interviewed and photographed for various media organizations since 1989. Schwab has a college degree from Scripps College and a Masters of Business degree from the University of San Diego. Schwab volunteers for numerous charity organizations. She also continues to lobby for water safety and for family violence mitigation. Schwab is the owner and publisher of The Social Diary. Margo is currently writing a book based on La Jolla.

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