Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Former Mrs. Oklahoma Joyce Basch

I recently received an email from Dr. Guy McGinnis, a graduate of Scranton Central High School in 1956 (who will be attending his 50th class reunion in September). In the email, he asked me if we were limiting the blog strictly to movie references to Scranton and Wilkes-Barre, for he had a list of classmates who are working/have worked/have connections to both Scranton and the entertainment industry. Therefore, after officially altering the misleading name of the blog from "Scranton/Wilkes-Barre in the Movies" to its new title "Scranton/Wilkes-Barre in Entertainment," and under the assurance from Dr. McGinnis that I had explicit approval to include the names of some of his classmates in the blog, I've decided to incorporate seperate entries for former residents who have made an impact in the entertainment field.

The first person we will be profiling is Joyce Basch. Currently an instructor of English as a Second Language at Santa Anna College's Department of Continuing Education, Joyce appeared with Mr. McGinnis in a play at Scranton Central in the spring of 1956.

A major highlight in Joyce's career was being crowned Mrs. Oklahoma and participating in the Mrs. America pageant. According to Dr. McGinnis, Joyce has also become a rather reknowned professional magician, working at five-star resorts.

In addition, Joyce has two grandchildren who are actors in Hollywood. Her grandson has appeared in the Eddie Murphy comedy Daddy Day Care, and her granddaughter is currently working in the new ABC series What About Brian? In addition, her niece Abigail has written three screenplays.

To read more about Joyce, click here.

I would sincerely like to thank Dr. Guy McGinnis for all of the local entertainment references he has provided me, most of which I hope to post in the near future. I would also like to sincerely thank Joyce Basch who, through Dr. McGinnis, has given me permission to include an entry about her in our blog.

UPDATE (May 22nd, 2006)

Joyce has sent more information about her grandchildren to Dr. Guy McGinnis, which he passed along to me.

"If you want to see or get a picture of my grandchildren,
Shane Baumel has his own website at

And if you go to and type in his name or "Curious George" premiere, you'll see pictures of Shane (9 years old) and his sister Mikaila (5 years old) on the red carpet.

Mikaila has a recurring part in the new series "What About Brian" which has been picked up and will continue next season."

UPDATE (May 31st, 2006)

Also of note is the fact thay Joyce's father owned the first TV store in Scranton in the 1950s.