Joan Sather Sponsors Palisades Fourth of July Home Decorating Contest

Will you be the eighth winner of PAPA’s Fourth of July Patriotic Home Decorating Contest, sponsored by Sotheby’s Realtor Joan Sather?

All Pacific Palisades homes are eligible to enter. Simply upload a photo of their decorated home to the “Pacific Palisades Fourth of July Celebration” page on Facebook, or email the photo to, and it will be uploaded to the Facebook page.

From those photos, the 12 most promising homes are chosen, and judges visit each address, usually on July 3.

Joan Sather sponsors the town’s Fourth of July Home Decorating contest. Photo: Lesly Hall
Joan Sather sponsors the town’s Fourth of July Home Decorating contest.
Photo: Lesly Hall

The winner receives an American flag that has been flown over the nation’s Capital, gift certificates, a story in the Palisades News and participation in judging the 2017 contest. Last year’s winner was the Jack and Sharon Sutton home on Galloway.

A year ago, Las Casas residents Scott and Susan Corwin and their son Joshua won the inaugural Sponsor’s Award, presented to “the home which best expresses effort above and beyond,” Sather said. “This includes extra exuberance in décor, energy and enthusiasm expressed, while taking into consideration prior participation and commitment to the original intention.”

“The whole point of this contest is to get people to decorate,” said former Palisades Americanism Parade Association presi- dent Rob Weber, who serves as one of the contest judges.

“Last year, I was impressed by how the tradition of decorating homes on the Fourth has really blossomed on certain streets, such as Toyopa, Alma Real and Monument, where almost every home was festooned in red, white and blue in some fashion,”Weber said.

“Seeing that patriotic spirit generates a wonderful feeling of pride in our community. It would be great to see at least a flag flying from every home and shop.”

Sather, who has been a realtor in the Palisades for 27 years, has been sponsoring the contest since 2012. “I wanted to become more involved in the parade,” she said. “With my relationship to houses, this was a natural segue.”

The daughter of a naval officer, Sather has lived all over the United States, including Hawaii, and also spent three years in France. She attended five elementary schools, two middle schools, two high schools and two colleges before graduating from UC Berkeley. She met her husband Kent in San Francisco and they moved to an apartment in Brentwood.

Through friends, they heard about Pacific Palisades and started house-hunting. “We looked quite a while before we found something we could afford in the Marquez Knolls area,” said Sather, who was pregnant with her first child. A major drawback was a long set of stairs to reach the home.

It was then she developed the buying philosophy she shares with clients. “There were more things about the house we liked than we didn’t like,” Sather said. “Even looking at a $10-million home, you won’t find a totally perfect house. You have to decide where you compromise.”

Sather tells her clients about the Fourth of July celebration. “It’s a wonderful portrayal of Pacific Palisades. There is enthusiasm, community spirit and everyone enjoys the day together.”

To reach Sather, call (310) 255-5450 or e-mail

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