LA MIRADA - Dozens of moms, grandmas, babies and school-aged girls showed off their fashion sense and nibbled on dainty sandwiches Saturday at Splash regional aquatics center as part of the city's annual Mother-Daughter Royal Tea Party.
"For us and many of the participants, it's the one time every year that we can celebrate being women," said Lisa Montoya, city community services supervisor.
"It's held around Mother's day, but we're celebrating women in general, as a whole," Montoya said. "It's time for all of us to come together in the community and appreciate all we do for each other."
Nearly 100 women and girls - some donning dresses, gloves and hats - sat at umbrella-topped tables near Splash's Buccaneer Bay as volunteers served them tea and snacks.
Throughout the two-hour event, participants were also able to take photos, make crafts like paper crowns, and show off their outfits during an afternoon fashion show.
"That's my favorite," said Rosy Villareal, 9, who has been attending the event with her mom Rosy for the past five years.
"I like to see all of the great dresses that everyone wears, and how pretty everyone looks," Villareal said. "I think it's really fun."
But for her mother, the tea has become an annual tradition - one that now also includes her 5- and 6-year-old daughters.
"I really love the atmosphere - and I don't know of another city around here that provides programs like this," Rosy Villareal, 42, said.
"My husband brings the girls to the Father-Daughter dance every year, and he has pictures with all of them at that event when they were babies all the way up to now," she said. "And I love that we have those pictures and those memories."
On top of that, the programs and classes in the city are affordable - and as a stay-at-home mom, Rosy Villareal said, "That's important to us."
The event also featured music by Brass Factory, and was made possible through various local sponsors like Azucar Cafe and CareMore health programs, Montoya said. Volunteers came from Biola University and the La Mirada Ebell women's group.
"This is really a community effort, with lots of participation from businesses and sponsors," Montoya said.