miss september is a high-ranking horsewoman among chicago's post and paddock set
Man's best friend may be his dog, but the only four-legged love of September Playmate Patti Reynolds' life is a galloping gelding named Frankie. One of the Midwest's comeliest champion riders, Chicago-born Patti, who first graced Playboy's pages as one of The Bunnies of Chicago (August 1964), has spent the past year training her thoroughbred and trotting off with trophies and top honors at local horse shows in hopes of making the international equestrian scene. "Actually, there's no money in horse shows themselves," reports the charming ex-cottontail, "but if you can take enough firsts and seconds against top-notch competition, you'll usually wind up with an attractive offer or two to train one of the better-known breeders' stable of jumpers. After I'd worked as a Bunny for three years, I found I had enough cash saved up to buy my own horse and train him for a couple of seasons without having to worry about bill collectors' beating a path to my door. So I went out and bought Frankie, stabled him near Chicago's Lincoln Park, where we could work out every day, and started getting him ready for some of the regional meets. Within one year after his first public jump, Frankie had five gold cups and a drawerful of blue ribbons to his credit, and I had decided to spend the next few years of my life on the hoof."
When our posting Playmate isn't busy putting her prancing pet through his paces or earning her next entry fee as a part-time model for a well-known local hair stylist, she spends most of her free time at Berlitz brushing up on her linguistic talents. "I've managed to acquire a working knowledge of Spanish and Italian so far," says Patti, "and with a few more courses under my belt, I shouldn't have too much trouble trading tips with the European equestrian set. Next to horses, my second love is traveling, and if all goes well, I may be able to combine business with pleasure by working my way up into international riding competitions and a chance to clear the high hurdles in other parts of the world.
Despite her designs on conquering the Continent with her equestrienne's expertise, Patti is enough of a raven-haired realist to admit that the right guy may come along in the meantime and lead her up another well-beather paths. "I've always been something of a loner," the sultry September Miss confided, "but I'd gladly trade horses for a home with a man who shares my interests in life." Outside of bridle paths, studying foreign languages and traveling, Patti's other pursuits include fast cars ("I'm a charter member of the Outer Drive Hero Drivers Club"), fettuccine ("Italian food and my waistline are old enemies"), fox-trotting ("I'm old-fashioned enough to still prefer cheek-to-cheek dancing over wall-to-wall fruging") and filigree ("My apartment is so full of Italian antiques you'd think I was running some sort of rococo workshop"). When it comes to male companionship, she confesses a weakness for rugged outdoor types who "don't need great looks or smooth lines to keep a girl interested." If any further endorsement of the joys of outdoor living is needed, we suggest a sportsmanlike appraisal of this month's centerfold.
Photography by Stan Malinowski