Big Boost

Annual Boosterpalooza raises funds for Marshall High marching band and color guard Saturday

Pasadena’s Marshall Fundamental Secondary School marching band and color guard have been scoring some major achievements over the past year, taking third place in the California state band championship. That honor was attained despite the fact that the groups have relatively small memberships, with just 14 color guard members — below the state average of 20 — and 43 band members, while the average state band has over 60 performers.

The band’s annual Boosterpalooza Fundraiser has been a key source of support for the beleaguered band, which travel to competitions in rented U-Haul trucks and school buses while most other bands travel in their own mega-buses. The event also serves as a public introduction for new band director Corey Whitt, a Harvard University alum who has already boosted the spirits of band members and their supporters.

The school’s Music Booster club will sell pancake breakfasts, hot dogs, fresh water and snacks at the event, which will also transform the school’s front lawn into an extensive flea market. Boosterpalooza runs from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Saturday at Marshall Fundamental Secondary School, 990 Allen Ave., Pasadena. Call (626) 755-1840 or write Beth Baird at

Tribute to Mineo

South Pasadena Public Library screens ‘Rebel Without a Cause’ on Library Film Night Oct. 5

The South Pasadena Public Library will host a screening of the classic 1955 blockbuster “Rebel Without a Cause” starring James Dean, Natalie Wood, Sal Mineo, and Dennis Hopper at 7 p.m. next  Thursday, Oct. 5, in the library’s historic Community Room.

The legendary film, which made James Dean an overnight sensation, will be introduced by actor Dean Ghaffari, a South Pasadena resident, in the persona of Sal Mineo.

Ghaffari is the writer and performer of the virtuoso one-man show “Rebel With a Cause: The Sal Mineo Story” which recently enjoyed a two-week run at the Promenade Playhouse in Santa Monica. In 2014, Ghaffari performed as Mineo at the South Pasadena Library and was accorded a prolonged standing ovation by the enthusiastic full house audience.

In “Rebel,” Mineo played the role of John “Plato” Crawford, a sensitive teen who was smitten with Jim Stark (Dean). Mineo perfectly complemented Wood and Dean in the landmark film that helped give American teenagers a much greater cultural identity in the ’50s.

The talents of Mineo were showcased in the most unforgettable scene of the film, the knife fight at Griffith Park Observatory. That scene gave the observatory immediate international recognition as a symbol of the city of Los Angeles

In 1955, Wood was nominated for a Best Supporting Actress Oscar and Mineo was nominated as Best Supporting Actor for their powerful portrayals in “Rebel.”   Mineo was the first teenager nominated for an Emmy and an Oscar in the same year. Natalie Wood went on to become one of most popular actresses in the world for several decades and Dean became a timeless cultural hero — even though he died tragically after only three films.

“Rebel Without a Cause” opened a door for youth-oriented films that has continued to widen ever since. The film has attained iconic status and Dean was recently honored with the installation of a bust on the west end of the Griffith Park Observatory.

The Community Room is located at 1115 El Centro St., South Pasadena. Doors will open at 6:30 p.m. and no tickets or reservations are necessary. Refreshments will be served. The free event is presented by the South Pasadena Public Library and the Friends of the South Pasadena Public Library. Call (626) 403-7340.