The Juliet Avenue Neighborhood Ladies’ Annual Open House

Kaycee Torkelson, Janet’s niece, helps out 
at the Neighborhood Ladies Annual Open House. (Photo courtesy Janet Lunder Hanafin)

In 1973 we invited the women we knew in the neighborhood—most of them, like us, mothers of preschoolers. We knew the mothers of the teenagers who babysat for us, so we invited them too. And we invited our elderly neighbors who indulged our children riding Big Wheels over their lawns. We scheduled the party the week between Christmas and New Year’s Day, when, we reasoned, mothers needed a break from their children. Our written invitations flatly stated, “MOMS ONLY.”