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The American Cancer Society of Southeastern Pennsylvania held their annual Crusaders Ball on September 28th, instead of in December this year. The event raised almost $300,000 – a grand success for a great cause. The decorations and giftbags, at the Crusaders Ball were especially noteworthy. Some of the board members actually sewed the green, silk bags themselves. Now, that is commitment. Look for this event next year – it's sure to be one of the better ones of the season.
 
The Mann Center celebrates the legendary American composer, Richard Rodgers, in a tribute performance by America's renowned Boston Pops Orchestra. The Pops is famous for its illustrious conductors, including Arthur Fiedler and award-winning film composer John Williams. In 1995, Keith Lockhart succeeded Williams as the third and youngest conductor to lead the Boston Pops Esplanade Orchestra. This year marks the 100th anniversary of the birth of Richard Rodgers, one of the most influential musical artists of the 20th century. During a career that spanned over six decades, Rodgers wrote more than 900 published songs and 40 Broadway musicals and received unparalleled recognition, including Tony, Oscar, Grammy, and Emmy Awards and the Pulitzer Prize.
 
Local actor/director Melanie Mayron, formerly of the show "Thirtysomething", was on hand to help promote her new film " Slap Her, She's French" at the United Artists King of Prussia theatre. After milling about in the VIP lobby at the cinema, making silly French jokes, and munching on the crudites, guests were shepherded into their seats. This movie is hilarious, mostly a send-up of Texan mores and not the Francais-bashing one might expect judging from the title. We won't give away the surprise twist at the end, so make sure to see this when it comes out in September.
 
The annual Best of Philly bash was held July 29th this year at Waterworks, overlooking the river and Boathouse Row. We honored our BOP winners in all five categories: food, nightlife, arts and entertainment, services, and shopping. All the happy businesses and their well-wishers showed up to crowd the patios with over 300 people. Though it was a record-breaking hot day, by the time the band, Silvertide, played it was comfortable enough to dance and scream for the hot, young rockers. The crowd cleared out after their last song around 10:30 – not bad for a Monday night.
 
This summer, on Sunday June 9th, the Young Philadelphians, (Young Friends of the Mann Center for the Performing Arts) aged 21 to 40, gathered for mingling and music at the Mann. During the summer, when many other social groups are less active, the Young Philadelphians club comes alive, providing events all season long at The Mann—the region's only outdoor cultural arts center. The kickoff event featured a concert by Harry Connick Jr. The next event, to be held on July 31st, will showcase Art Garfunkel. Then, on September fifth, the popular Broadway show, Rent!, is the next Young Philadelphians attraction.
 
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