More than 30 years ago, Terry L. Karges was feeling burned out from a career working in theme parks such as Disneyland and Sea World. He tried to figure out his next move.

“I thought, ‘What am I missing in my life?’” he said. “It dawned on me that the only pictures I had on the walls at work were pictures of race cars.”

Karges went on to a second career in the auto industry, which included working in sales and marketing at car parts suppliers and running his own drag-racing team.

Last Monday, Karges, now 67, started as executive director of the Petersen Automotive Museum. On his first day on the job, he walked through the museum, met staff and asked each one to submit ideas for the future.

But there was one task that surprised the lifelong car enthusiast: the amount of walking required to check out the museum’s various nooks and crannies.

“I’m getting a lot of exercise moving around the museum,” he said. “Let’s put it this way: I wore driving shoes in here today. Tomorrow, I think we’ll see tennis shoes.”

Tastes Good, Though

Christina DiSalvo is such a horse person that riding figures prominently in both her job and charity work.

An equine insurance expert at Momentous Insurance Brokerage in Van Nuys, DiSalvo recently arranged for her company to sponsor the Aim for the Moon fundraiser at Gibson Ranch in Sunland, where she boards her three Arabians. The Aug. 4 event raised money for Dusty’s Riders, a non-profit group that gives at-risk youth the chance to ride and groom horses. The organization is named for Dusty, a horse at Gibson Ranch.

DiSalvo, who started riding at age 6 and is now 35, got involved with the event after Robert “Dale” Gibson, a professional stunt rider and owner of the ranch, invited her to a planning meeting.

“Horse lovers are a big family community,” she said. “It was only natural for me and our equine practice to rally behind Dale.”

Aim for the Moon started with a two-hour trail ride followed by a cowboy barbecue and barn dance. A big feature was a silent auction of donated desserts to raise additional money for Dusty’s Riders.

The desserts included a red, white and blue flag-shaped cake and a moon-shaped cake that made reference to the fund-raiser’s title. But one dessert stood out as something only horse folk could appreciate.

“It was a chocolate cake decorated on top to look like a cow pie,” DiSalvo said. “It was a hit.”

Staff reporters Alfred Lee and Joel Russell contributed to this column. Page 3 is compiled by Editor Charles Crumpley. He can be reached at

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