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Perhaps the next broadcast will be sunny

Too bad, wasn't it, that Monday was a gorgeous day and Wednesday dawned sunny, but Tuesday, when the whole nation saw us on ABC's Good Morning America television show, the weather had to be gray, foggy and dumb. Anyway, the city, what you could see of it through the fog, looked good. Maybe next time, when they come to film our new baseball team at our new dome and they look around at our new downtown and our renovated Vinoy Park Hotel, it'll be a sunny day.

Our kids, viewing from Washington and Baltimore, loved it all, felt like they'd had a visit home after seeing The Pier, Mayor Bob Ulrich and Ralph Heath.

Incidentally, several of us will be glad to volunteer a few plantings, not to obscure the waterfront view, but in lieu of the white plastic pots with the crotons stuck in them.

It was interesting, as we walked in the dark Tuesday morning, to see the whole downtown waterfront aglow with lights reflected in the cloud cover, so strange for 6:30 a.m. It looked like a white dawn coming from the wrong direction. As we walked closer, The Pier was bright but nothing is so bright as those lights at Al Lang Stadium.

The ABC-TV crew members didn't get much time at the Don CeSar Registry Resort on St. Petersburg Beach where they stayed, for they were on location at The Pier beginning at 4:30 a.m. Hope they got a little piece of Monday on the beach.

As all good things must come to an end, the Museum of Fine Arts' Treasure Gallery will close Wednesday. In its 11th year at its fourth location, 203 First St. NE, it has increased museum coffers by $245,000. However, the expertise lingers on. Museum members who ran the shop still will be available to handle in-home estate sales. If you'd like the particulars on this service, call the museum at 896-2667.

Meanwhile, the 52 women who worked with and in the gallery will throw their efforts into other museum projects, one of which is a Museum Mart in November. This was an annual tradition discontinued in 1985 that included art, crafts, collectibles, antiques, jewelry, plants, a clothing boutique, food and entertainment. Mart chairpeople will be Joan Swanson and Margaret Bowman, who are calling all workers for a 10 a.m. March 7 kickoff coffee at the museum. They'd like your donations, skill, ideas, time and storage space.

Other news at the museum garnered at Thursday's Stuart Society meeting is that the Museum of Fine Arts will be one of 13 in the country to receive paintings from the Guggenheim Museum in New York. They will be exhibited here in the fall. Museum director Michael Milkovich is in New York now, choosing the paintings.

You could say Margaret LeCompte, who taught English and history at Mirror Lake Junior High and St. Petersburg High School for more than 32 years, is a natural for a book reviewer. But when she packs in 200 people (there would be more if space permitted) per review, you know there's more to it than background. Mrs. LeCompte has been reviewing books for about five years at First United Methodist Church, where she filled the recreation room Monday, and at St. Peter's Cathedral, where she filled the parish hall last week. The book was The King in Love by Theo Aronson. It involves Edward VII, and she kept her audiences spellbound. She'll now follow her usual custom of presenting the review at Sunny Shores Villas and Suncoast Manor.

"I sometimes spend two or three months looking for just the right book," said Mrs. LeCompte. She never reviews fiction, feeling it has too many sub-plots, but instead seeks non-fiction that's "factual and filled with interest. I stay away from anything controversial, but women like just a touch of scandal."

The most helpful factor of all in reviewing, says she, is "a good listener. The audience carries you through."

Jacqueline "Jay" Loughlin and husband, Dr. John Loughlin, get to see daughter Mary Ann every day, even though she lives in Atlanta and they live here. Ms. Loughlin is CNN news anchor on Daywatch. The St. Petersburg Catholic High School and Florida State University graduate worked for WECA in Tallahassee upon graduation, then joined Turner Broadcasting in Atlanta in 1981. She joined CNN in 1983, going to the Soviet Union in 1986 for the Goodwill Games.

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