Cescaphe and Diner En Blanc Present New Year’s Eve at the Water Works

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Cescaphe Event Group (CEG) and the hosts of Dîner en Blanc Philadelphia partnered for the second year to host a memorable New Year’s Eve party at CEG’s newest venue, the historic Water Works (640 Water Works Drive, Philadelphia). Revelers were invited to ring in the New Year with an evening of dinner, drinks and dancing to the Bill Handy Orchestra. This year’s theme was the Golden Age of Hollywood, complete with a red carpet, director chairs, and life-size cutouts of some of Hollywood’s glamour couples including Jimmy Stewart and Katherine Hepburn from The Philadelphia Story. At the countdown to midnight there was a champagne toast, with confetti and balloons filling the room. Dancing and desserts continued till 2 a.m.

Photos after the jump »

Darren Sproles Empowered Youth Fundraiser

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Darren Sproles, running back for the Philadelphia Eagles, and his wife, Michel, co-founders of Sproles Empowered Youth hosted a fundraiser for their foundation at the new Center City eatery Fine Palate at 231 S. 15th Street. The foundation helps teens learn essential life skills: resume building, managing money, applying for jobs and essentials to become responsible and successful adults.

There are also football camps and fitness classes for girls. The Sproles are hands-on in these activities, guiding and educating the teens along with trained professionals. The event was consisted of a cocktail party, with lite bites prepared by executive chef Vince Joseph. In addition to the ticket sales to the sold out event, there was a silent auction with trips to the Grammy’s, The Espy Awards and even the MTV Music Awards, auctioned off to raise more funds for the charity. A short video was shown depicting the activities the foundation funds, and the Sproles thanked their guests for coming and supporting a noble cause. Supporting their teammate at the event were Brandon Graham, Eagles Running Back Kenjon Barner and Seyi Ajirotutu.

Photos after the jump »

13th Annual Jefferson Gala

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On December 8th, Thomas Jefferson Hospital leaders and Bernie Marcus cut the ribbon on the Brind-Marcus Center of Integrative Medicine at Jefferson ( 789 Lancaster Ave, Villanova, PA), made possible with a $14 million donation by the co-founder of The Home Depot and the chairman of the Marcus Foundation, Inc. Later in the evening guests gathered at the Philadelphia Marriott Downtown for the 13th Annual Jefferson Gala to celebrate. The night started off with a cocktail party, where guests could meet and hear about the latest technologies being used in integrative medicine at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital. During dinner, Dr. Stephen Klasko, president and CEO Thomas Jefferson University and Jefferson Health, honored Bernie and Billi Marcus and Dr. Leonard G. Gomella for their contributions to healthcare and medicine at Thomas Jefferson Hospital.
Photos after the jump »

ab+c Creative Intelligence Opens Center City Office

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On Wednesday, December 2, 2015, ab+c Creative Intelligence celebrated its new Center City office with a ribbon cutting and cocktail party. ab+c is the largest marketing agency in Delaware and is making a huge commitment to Philadelphia, taking over a whole floor at 1429 Walnut Street which will serve as its Philly headquarters. Guests at the party included local business people and clients; even Michael Nutter stopped by. The mayor thanked John Hawkins, president/CEO of ab+c Creative Intelligence, for making a commitment to Philadelphia, and wished Philadelphia office leaders Steve Rosen and Steve Merino much success, and looks forward to them taking over the whole building.
Photos after the jump »

Ebony2015: The Black Celebration

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Billed as “The Black Celebration,” Philadelphia’s premier black-attire-mandatory event EBONY2015 took place Friday, November 27th — “Black Friday” — at the African American Museum on Arch Street. Guests were strongly encouraged to wear upscale black casual attire and enjoyed a two-hour Hennessy open bar with complimentary food. DJ Ayeboogie, DJ Hvnlee, DJ Hbk kept the party going until 2 a.m.

Photos after the jump »

American Foundation for Suicide Prevention Gala

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On November 14, 2015, The Greater Philadelphia Chapter of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention (AFSP) honored me(!) with the 2015 Humanitarian Award for my advocacy in promoting AFSP’s overall mission: to end the silence and reduce the stigma around mental illness and suicide.

When Garden Wellington (PR for the AFSP) approached me a few years back, asking me to get involved in the organization by photographing the Out of the Darkness Walk, I turned her down. I told her I was too busy. But the truth was that I didn’t want to face my past. She persisted, and a few months later asked me again, saying the organization could use a little HughE love on a subject, that at the time rarely was covered in the media. I told her I’d get back to her.

I realized I could help others by telling my story, when I struggled with the issue in my 20s. I then told my story on my blog and on social media. They tell me that with my help over the past three years they have double the number of people who come to their annual walk, held in October; this past year 5,000 walkers participated.

The American Foundation for Suicide Prevention is the leader in the fight against suicide. They fund research, offer educational programs, advocate for public policy, and support those affected by suicide. The 350 guests who attended enjoyed dinner, dancing and the most amazing silent auction from generous sponsors. Thanks to everyone who supported the event by attending, or making a donation. We’re saving lives.

Photos after the jump »

XIX Most Fashionable Women in Philadelphia

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Last Monday night, the Sixth Annual XIX Most Fashionable Women in Philadelphia were honored at the restaurant XIX in the Hyatt at the Bellevue. Created six years ago as the signature event of the Philadelphia Collection, the annual event recognizes extraordinary women who are not only fashionable, but philanthropic.

The women (listed alphabetically):

  • Alice Bast, President & CEO, National Foundation of Celiac Awareness
  • Emily Bittenbender, Managing Partner, Bittenbender Construction, LP
  • Councilwoman Blondell Reynolds Brown, Council’s Majority Whip, Committee Chair on the Environment, Vice Chair of the Committee on Education
  • Wendy Clark, Lady B, The Voice of Hip Hop
  • Rosemary Connors, Journalist, NBC 10
  • Doreen Creede, Creator, Style Maniac, Editor-at-Large, Founder Magazine
  • Anne Ewers, President & CEO, The Kimmel Center Inc.
  • Varsovia Fernandez, President & CEO, Greater Philadelphia Hispanic Chamber of Commerce
  • Valerie Gay, Executive Director, Art Sanctuary
  • Caryn Gubin, Director, Patient Care Services Medical Rehabilitation Centers of PA
  • Ursula Henwood Keating, Director, Workforce Diversity & Inclusion, Comcast
  • Stacy Holland, Executive Director, The Lenfest Foundation Doreen Holmgren, Philanthropist
  • Doreen Holmgren, Flyers Wives Charity
  • Mary Pat Kessler, Director, Member Relations Business Clubs of America
  • Karen Knudsen, Director, Sidney Kimmel Cancer Center, Chair Department of Cancer Biology
  • Tiffany Newmuis, Director, Democratic National Convention
  • Lori Nicoletti Peruto, General Counsel, Philadelphia Suburban Development Corporation
  • Nicole Paloux, Owner, Red Balloon Public Relations, Theatre
  • Councilwoman Blondell Reynolds Brown, Council’s Majority Whip, Committee Chair on the Environment, Vice Chair of the Committee on Education
  • Cecilia Torres, Owner-Founder, Casa Papel
  • Ellen Yin, Co-Founder and Co-Owner of High Street Hospitality

They were joined by

  • Mary Dougherty, owner of Nicole Miller Philadelphia,
  • First Lady Lisa Nutter 
  • Janice Waitkus of Lagos

Photos after the jump »

Opening of Theatre Exile’s Rizzo

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Last night was the long-anticipated opening of the play Rizzo from Theatre Exile [Read David Fox’s review of the play here]. The event drew lots of political powerhouses from years gone by like Frank Rizzo strategist Marty Weinberg as well as the current the Democratic contender for mayor, Jim Kenney. There were also family members in the audience, friends and people who weren’t fond of Rizzo on hand to see the show. Before the performance, there was a cocktail party down the street at the home of long-time theater supporters Pam and Gresham Riley, where author Sal Paolantonio, who wrote the book the play is based on, appeared. Also there was Joe Canuso, founding partner of Theatre Exile, and director of Rizzo.

Following the play, there was an after party held at The Plough & the Stars. Rizzo is running at Christ Church Neighborhood House, 20 N. American St. through November 8.th I was glad to catch it last night; Scott Greer and the cast were amazing. Everyone I talked to really enjoyed it, and said it really captured the angry and morose Rizzo as he tried to change his personality, and run for a third term as Mayor of Philadelphia in the early ’90s before his untimely death.
Photos after the jump »

Big Brothers Big Sisters 100th Anniversary Gala

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The Big Brothers Big Sisters of Southeastern Pennsylvania held their 100th anniversary gala last night.

Guests walked the purple carpet and posed for a handful of paparazzi, then continued into the purple-themed Kimmel Center where they enjoyed several cocktail parties. Upstairs on tier two, guest performers Vanessa Williams, Macy Gray, Stephan Jenkins, Marlon Wayans and Shontelle mingled with VIPs. Meanwhile, downstairs in Commonwealth Plaza another cocktail party was going strong in the beautifully designed area decorated on a grand scale by Petah Bashano Event Décor and Design and food by Garces Catering.

Since its inception in 1915, the Big Brothers Big Sisters has offered mentoring to thousands of boys and girls by reaching out and believing positive adult role models make a difference. And they do, many of the speakers during the program said.

Several people and organizations were honored during a program in Verizon Hall, including Comcast, The Bentley Family, Dr. Wilson Goode, Fox Rothschild, and two long time volunteers, Tom McElvogue and Joan Tishgart. The goal for the evening was to raise $1 million dollars; that goal was exceeded, but there is still an opportunity to raise even more funds to help mentor a child.
Photos after the jump »

PHLDiversity Annual Luncheon

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Last week PHLDiversity, a division of the Philadelphia Convention and Visitors Bureau, (PHLCVB) hosted its 2015 Annual Luncheon at the Philadelphia Marriott Downtown. Emceed by Emmy award-winning journalist Cynthia Gouw, the luncheon celebrated “The Impact of Diversity.” Celebrating Philly’s spirit of cooperation and inclusion, industry and community leaders were honored for their continued impact on the community’s diverse hospitality and tourism industry. Honors included the Community Recognition Award, given to Dr. Stephen S. Tang, president and CEO of the University City Science Center; the Industry Appreciation Award, given to Jay H. Shah, CEO of Hersha Hospitality Trust; and the Bring it Home Award given to Mayor Michael A. Nutter, Congressman Bob Brady, and Former Governor Ed Rendell for their efforts in bringing the 2016 Democratic National Convention to Philadelphia.

Photos from the PHLDiversity Luncheon after the jump »

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