Mountain Views News     Logo: MVNews     Saturday, February 15, 2014

MVNews this week:  Page 14

After you've taken step one to decide to sell your home, step two is usually setting your asking price, 
striving for a balance between generating offers and receiving top dollar. 

Your chosen representative will perform a Competitive Market Analysis (CMA) to produce an estimate 
of your home's "fair market value," or that price that educated buyers will pay based on listings 
and sales of homes similar to yours. The agent will not establish the price, but only provide the information 
you need to make that decision yourself. 

In a hot market, you have the advantage, but would still want to avoid overpricing, which is always 
unproductive. However, in a neutral or buyers market, you'll have to be particularly cautious in your 
approach to setting a price. 

In soft markets, price reductions become more common, as well as fewer offers and longer listing 
periods. You have to first establish your priority: is it more important for you to sell quickly or to 
get the most money possible? Like it or not, one option simply must be more critical than the other. 

Have a third party, like your agent, help you see your home as a commodity, with positive and negative 
selling points. Price your home objectively and competitively, be prepared to negotiate to reach 
an agreement with buyers, and exercise patience as you prepare your move. 

HOMES & PROPERTY Mountain Views-News Saturday, February 15, 2014 

PASADENA, Calif. Pasadena Showcase House for the 
Arts is proud to announce Mary Ann Clayton as its 50th 
Benefit Chair for 2013-14. As Benefit Chair, Clayton is 
responsible for overseeing the entire Annual Benefit, the 
Pasadena Showcase House of Design, known to the public 
as Showcase House, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary 
this year with a spectacular 1915 English Country Estate 
designed by Stiles O. Clements. This year’s Showcase House 
will be featured, along with the 49 past Showcase Houses 
in a commemorative book, 50 Years of Pasadena Showcase 
Design Houses. 

Clayton shares her thoughts about this milestone event, 
“this year, I have the amazing honor of guiding our 
organization through the process of putting together a 
Showcase House for the fiftieth time. This is the Golden 
Anniversary of the Pasadena Showcase House of Design. 
I have been very fortunate in getting to know most of 
the strong, creative women who have gone before me in 
heading up this project. They are, indeed, a dynamic group.” 

In 2001, Clayton became a member of PSHA when she was 
invited to join the organization by a good friend. During 
the intervening years, she has held many prominent 
positions on the Benefit Committee, including: Interior Co-chair, Exterior Co- chair, Tickets Co-
chair, Restaurant Co-chair, Shops at Showcase Co-chair, Special Evenings Co-chair, Shops at Showcase 
Treasurer and Tickets Marketing Chair. She has served on the Board as Provisional Chair, Secretary, 
Benefit Treasurer, Season Tickets Chair and Instrumental Competition Chair. She has also served on 
the Policies and Procedures, Gifts and Grants, and Membership and Finance committees. All of this 
has helped prepare her for facilitating the most widely recognized and successful Showcase House in 
the country. 

Speaking about the gratification of being Benefit Chair and part of PSHA, Clayton says “no one is 
looking forward to opening day 2014 more than I. The designers have presented wonderfully creative 
ideas for the interior and exterior spaces. We are all excited to see these designs come to life, and 
then to share the finished estate with the public. For me, the best part is getting to know the other 
wonderful members of this group of very focused, hard-working people. Each year we undertake a 
seemingly impossible project to earn money in order to fund our music programs and support arts 
throughout our community.” 

Clayton’s own musical background endears her to PSHA’s award winning Pasadena Showcase House 
Music Mobile™ Program, the Pasadena Showcase House Annual Youth Concert, and Pasadena 
Showcase House Annual Instrumental Competition. “I identify with PSHA’s mission statement, 
having studied music since the age of 5, starting with piano, then trumpet, French horn and flute. I 
have fond memories of participating in the annual instrumental competitions in Northern Ohio in 
grades 9 through 12, and working to earn a coveted ‘excellent’ rating as a solo contestant, or as part 
of a duet or trio.” 

Clayton lives in Altadena with her husband, Rob, and their amazing tri-color Cocker Spaniel, Roxie, 
while their two grown children reside in New York City. Clayton holds a PhD in Geophysics and has 
worked for the United States Geological Survey, Jet Propulsion Laboratory and a small oil exploration 
company. In her free time, Clayton enjoys sewing, quilting, hand weaving and skiing. She is also a 
member of the San Marino League and Altadena Guild of Huntington Memorial Hospital where she 
has served as Benefit Chair and President. 

ABOUT PASADENA SHOWCASE HOUSE FOR THE ARTS: This is a milestone year for PSHA as it celebrates 
65 years of volunteerism, the 50th Anniversary of the Pasadena Showcase House of Design and, since 1948, the 
generous awarding of over $19 million in gifts and grants in support of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, Walt Disney 
Concert Hall, numerous non-profit organizations and local symphonic, cultural and educational musically-oriented 
programs for youth and young adults.

 An all-volunteer organization, Pasadena Showcase House for the Arts (PSHA) is a non-profit California 
Corporation whose members donate their time and talents to produce the annual Pasadena Showcase House of 
Design. Founded in 1948, and formerly known as The Pasadena Junior Philharmonic Committee, PSHA adopted 
the Pasadena Showcase House of Design as its annual benefit in 1965. It is one of the oldest, largest and most 
successful house and garden tours in the nation. PSHA volunteers are united by their belief in the power and beauty 
of music. Their collective desire is to fund programs that nurture the study and appreciation of music, utilize music 
as a vehicle towards health and healing, and ensure that music is available to a broad range of audiences.

 The 2014 Pasadena Showcase House of Design will be open to the public Sunday, April 13 through Sunday, May 11. 
For more information about PSHA, the Pasadena Showcase House of Design, or to pre-order 50 Years of Pasadena 
Showcase Design Houses, please visit 

Peanuts, anyone? It turns out 
there’s a big one in the sky—a 
strange peanut-shaped asteroid 
named 25143 Itokawa, about 
one-third of a mile long and 
roughly half that wide. 

By making exquisitely 
precise measurements using 
the European Southern 
Observatory’s New Technology 
Telescope (NTT) in Chile, 
astronomers have found that 
different parts of this asteroid 
have different densities. This is 
the first evidence that asteroids 
can have a highly varied internal 

As well as revealing secrets about 
the asteroid’s formation, finding 
out what lies below the surface 
of asteroids may also shed light 
on what happens when bodies 
collide in the solar system, and 
provide clues about how planets 

Using very precise ground-
based observations, Stephen 
Lowry (University of Kent, UK) 
and colleagues have measured the speed at which the near-Earth asteroid 25143 Itokawa (http:// spins and how that spin rate is changing over time. They have 
combined these delicate observations with new theoretical work on how asteroids radiate heat. 

This small asteroid is an intriguing subject as it has a strange peanut shape, as revealed by the Japanese 
spacecraft Hayabusa ( in 2005. To probe its 
internal structure, Lowry’s team used images gathered from 2001 to 2013, by ESO’s New Technology 
Telescope at the La Silla Observatory in Chile among others, to measure its brightness variation as 
it rotates. This timing data was then used to deduce the asteroid’s spin period very accurately and 
determine how it is changing over time. When combined with knowledge of the asteroid’s shape this 
allowed them to explore its interior—revealing the complexity within its core for the first time. The 
density of the interior was found to vary from 1.75 to 2.85 grams per cubic centimeter (the two densities 
refer to Itokawa’s two distinct parts). 

“This is the first time we have ever been able to determine what it is like inside an asteroid,” explains 
Lowry. “We can see that Itokawa has a highly varied structure—this finding is a significant step forward 
in our understanding of rocky bodies in the solar system.” 

The spin of an asteroid and other small bodies in space can be affected by sunlight. This phenomenon, 
known as the Yarkovsky-O’Keefe-Radzievskii-Paddack (YORP) effect, occurs when absorbed light 
from the Sun is re-emitted from the surface of the object in the form of heat. When the shape of the 
asteroid is very irregular the heat is not radiated evenly and this creates a tiny, but continuous, torque 
on the body and changes its spin rate. 

Schematic view of asteroid (25143) Itokawa Photo courtesy European Southern Observatory 

As a simple and rough analogy for the YORP effect, if one were to shine an intense enough light beam 
on a propeller it would slowly start spinning due to a similar effect. 

Lowry’s team measured that the YORP effect was slowly accelerating the rate at which Itokawa spins. 
The change in rotation period is tiny—a mere 0.045 second per year. But this was very different from 
what was expected, and can only be explained if the two parts of the asteroid’s peanut shape have 
different densities. 

This is the first time that astronomers have found evidence for the highly varied internal structure 
of asteroids. Up until now, the properties of asteroid interiors could only be inferred using rough 
overall density measurements. This rare glimpse into the diverse innards of Itokawa has led to much 
speculation regarding its formation. One possibility is that it formed from the two components of a 
double asteroid after they bumped together and merged. 

Other images at: 

You can contact Bob Eklund at: