O's honor Don Buford

SYLVIA BADGER

August 15, 1993|By SYLVIA BADGER

Last week, Don Buford, a k a Baltimore's best leadoff man, became the 21st Baltimore Oriole to be inducted into the Orioles Hall of Fame.

Buford was the scrappy outfielder who got things going for the Birds in the 1969-1971 seasons. Now he's the man who gets things moving as the manager of the Bowie Baysox, who are playing this season at Memorial Stadium.

Hundreds of Buford's friends, fans and family joined the Orioles Advocates at Stouffer Harborplace Hotel for lunch. I had the pleasure of chatting with many of them before lunch.

The Bufords live in Sherman Oaks, Calif., where Don's wife, Alescia, runs a public relations business. Don Jr. is a doctor; Daryl is a lawyer; and the one we know best is Damon, who made his big-league debut at Camden Yards in May. I also met Don's mother, Sedalia, and the Bufords' California neighbors, Bonnie and Fred Glantz and Bob and Sandy Lebowitz, who came East for the festivities. The legendary USC coach Rod Dedeaux, whom Mrs. Buford credits with giving Don his big break in baseball, traveled to Baltimore to be with them, too.

As always, WBAL-radio's Jim West was a splendid master of ceremonies and introduced guests such as Monsignor Martin Schwalenberg; former O's manager Earl Weaver and his wife, Maryanna; O's GM Roland Hemond; former teammates and old friends Dick Hall, Curt Motton, Elrod Hendricks, Bob Brown and his wife, Jane; Doug Melvin, and Bud Freeman, who's now with the Baysox.

The Bufords were thrilled to see Dr. and Mrs. Mervyn Carey, who drove from Rehoboth Beach for the luncheon. It was Carey who delivered their baseball star son, Damon. Carey retired from delivering babies many years ago and has since become an accomplished carver.

Others spotted in the ballroom were Andy and Norma McDonald he's the director of the Essex Community College Foundation; Claudenia Burgemeister, public relations Marriott Hunt Valley Inn; Pride of Baltimore captain Bob Glover; attorney Gil "the Captain" Hoffman; Variety 104's promotions person John Pavlos; and hard-working Orioles Advocates Bill Schofield, Dr. Bob Bates, Diane Foster, Jim Hedrick and Angie Reaves.

The Orioles Hall of Fame was established in 1977 by the Oriole Advocates, and its first inductees were Brooks Robinson and Frank Robinson.

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First lady Hillary Clinton attracts attention wherever she's seen, even when it's only a life-size portrait in a Charles Street gallery window. According to Jim Dockery, curator of Artshowcase Gallery, the painting stirred up a lot of interest, so much that the artist, Phillip Grace, was able to sell it immediately.

It's part of the Commissioned Portraits exhibit, which runs through Aug. 28 and features more than 20 portraits, including those of former governors Harry Hughes and Blair Lee, and the late Father Joe Sellinger, who was a wonderful Loyola College president. The majority of the portraits are not for sale, but the show gives anyone who might want a portrait painted in the future a chance to see the different styles and prices of the 23 artists represented.

Not only is this the 100th, but it is also the last exhibit at Artshowcase Gallery. After 10 years, Dockery told me, "It's just -- become too expensive to maintain a gallery. We have lots of lookers, but too few buyers."

If there's one thing Dockery knows after all these years, it is the art world, especially the Maryland scene. So he has decided to devote his time to being an artist's agent, which means he will take buyers directly to artists' studios, where they can buy artwork at studio prices, which, he tells me, is the best way to buy.

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Congrats are in order for:

The folks at the Baltimore Convention and Visitors Association, for landing the American Veterinary Medical Association convention for 1998. Approximately 7,000 people will be in town, and that's worth an estimated $3.8 million to the local economy . . . Waterfowl USA members, especially Bill Schmidt, owner of A&S Trucking. He donated a tractor trailer which was at Chesapeake Avenue in Towson last week while Towsonites filled it with non-perishable items for Mississippi flood victims.

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