Tuesday, December 2, 2014


In connection with the 50th anniversary of the unexpected hit series "Gilligan's Island," Dawn (who portrayed the lovable farm girl next door, Mary Ann Sommers), has released "A Guide To Life: What Would Mary Ann Do?" through Taylor Trade Publishing and Rowman and Littlefield Publishing Group, Inc.

Book Tour Schedule: New York, Denver, Chicago, Reno, Palm Springs, as well as dates in Las Vegas (TBA) and appearances at Vromans (Dec 9th), The Santa Monica Library (Nov 22nd) as well as the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce Authors program (Dec 6th) in Los Angeles and more..

Wells, who was a former Miss Nevada, auditioned for the role of Mary Ann Summers opposite such noted competition as Raquel Welch, Patricia Ann Priest and the actress, Nancy McCarthy, who shot the pilot episode under the character name of "Bunny." The role of Mary Ann became a simple farm-girl from Winfield, Kansas and spawned one of the most popular questions of all time "Ginger or Mary Ann?"

Dawn writes about the meaning of the Mary Ann character and observes the cultural shifts that have occurred since she was on the island.  From the get-go, the Mary Ann character was different. She wasn't a Hollywood creation. She was molded by Dawn, from Dawn.  The Character that was originally listed as "And the rest" on the credits became the fan favorite, garnering more fan mail that even the title character.  With over 150,000 fans on her FaceBook page and fan clubs across the U.S., her following has remained faithful.

Dawn says that Mary Ann fits today just as she fit two generations ago, because she is timeless. In a world where the industry and society has been celebrating their "Bad girls," Mary Ann continues to be, for many, the breathe of fresh air as the “Good Girl.” Pop culture is too powerful and too pervasive to be controlled by parents, siblings or colleagues. It can be confused with reality. This leaves young people in a vulnerable position - they have to make decisions that are normally beyond their maturity. Dawn discusses decisions we make in life and even goes straight to the BIG DECISION and delivers her concept of the meaning of sex.  In a world of participation trophies, easy praise, and entitlement attitudes, how do you define achievement? Dawn describes it as a journey of failure and learning and tenacity that requires a constant personal re-examination of what success really means.

A song highlighting Dawn's famous role was performed by a group, named "The Southern Gentlemen," for the TV icon entitled "There will always be a place in my heart for Mary Ann". Miss Wells remarked "I embraced the publics love or Mary Ann years ago.  In fact, she seems to have grown more popular every year."  Why? she explains "I think there are fewer Mary Ann's today than there used to be.  There are many Gingers, both on TV and in real life, but far fewer Mary Ann's ... and I think the public remembers her fondly and misses her terribly."

When asked about the most memorable Mary Ann moment, she responded, "There are too many. However, recently I was brought in to surprise Sandra Bullock with a coconut creme pie as celebrity interviewer, Gino Salomone, was speaking to her about the film "Gravity. We had great fun. I am such a fan!"  The video has been released and can be seen at here!

Since the show ended on September 4, 1967, Wells has continued to work on both screen and stage.  She published Mary Ann's Gilligan's Island Cookbook with co-writers Ken Beck & Jim Clark, which included a foreword by castaway cast mate Bob Denver, and even starred as Lovey Howell in Gilligan's Island: The Musical, a musical stage adaptation of the TV show.  Wells most recently starred along with fan favorites such as Rip Taylor, Lee Merriwether, Bruce Vilanch and others in "Silent, But Deadly" and the stage production of "Lion In Winter" as Queen Eleanor.

Dawn has just completed three stage productions in 2013 including "Love Letters," "Steel Magnolias" and off Broadway in "Love, Loss & What I Wore."  She is currently working on the idea of a new reality show "Hunter History" as well as a new book entitled "A Guide To Life: Why We Love Mary" to be released this year (Sept).



1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
2 large onions (thinly sliced)
4 (8 ounce) beef tenderloins
1 cup balsamic vinegar
salt and freshly ground pepper

Heat a skillet with 2 tbls extra virgin olive oil over medium heat and add the onions, cook until the onions are golden and caramelized for about 10 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste. If the pan is getting dry add some water and set aside.

In another skillet on high heat add the remaining olive oil and place the beef in the oil when hot. Sear both sides for about 30 seconds, turning once. Add the balsamic vinegar to the beef and deglaze the pan. Cook until balsamic is reduced to a syrupy consistency.

Plate the beef tenderloins with the caramelized onions on top. Drizzle the beef with balsamic reduction.

Serve hot!!

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