Philadelphia’s swanky Hair O’ the Dog celebrated its 19th year on Saturday, January 19th at the Loews Hotel. The festivities kicked off with a VIP preview party with gourmet hors d’oeuvres (ask Sheena Parveen about the egg rolls). Nearly 1,800 people packed three rooms after primping all day for what some people call Philadelphia’s adult prom; each lovely lady dresses to the nines, often outdoing the competition successfully, though sometimes not so much. It’s always a head-turning experience. Below: Stefania Veneziale, Megan Nailon, and Joanne Malandra.
This year’s celebration had a “modern disco” theme, and Marisa Magnatta from 93.3 WMMR’s Preston and Steve Show served as host (center). She’s wearing a fabulous gown from Saks Fifth Ave on the red carpet with friends Greg Juliano, Kerri Fiatau, Ron Zawadsky, Jen and Chris Hemple, and Jim Magnatta.
A portion of the event’s proceeds will benefit the charity Friends Are By Your Side, founded by famed hairstylist Martino Cartier. The organization consists of a network of salon owners, stylists and beauty industry experts devoted to helping women and children suffering from hair loss as a result of cancer treatments. For a second year, the Hair O’ the Dog recognized one woman battling cancer for her courage and perseverance by crowning her "The Queen O’ The Dog." This year’s Queen O’ The Dog, Ashley Smyk of Philadelphia (left), told me it was an honor to represent all the women who benefit from Friends Are By Your Side. She came with BFF Steph Wery.
Below: Anthony Sojo, Kellie Berrios, Laura Grillo and Matt Barnett.
Although there was a chill in the air, it was often very hot inside the Loews ballroom. Below: Anthony Vittese and Kate Beaver.
Below: Many of the guests come year after year, as it's a tradition said Rob Wright, here with Danielle Dubois.
No doubt this Hair O' the Dog will be very memorable for Lauren Nelson, a forensic toxicologist at the medical examiners office, and Joseph Natoli. Earlier in the night, as they were celebrating Joe's birthday, he popped the question and asked Lauren to be his wife. Congrats!!
Below: David Skinner, Michelle Benskey, Ashley Piotrowski, Julie Dorenbos, owner of Skin Palette, Amber Stires, Skin Palette, and Matt Stires. The Skin Palette girls tell me they were packed for the past few days, as the ladies attending the HOD were lined up to get the perfect tan for the big gala, some even brought in their dresses to make sure to get the most complimentary color.
Below: Vin O'Neil and Megan McDonald have had a very busy weekend. I had met them the night before at the Philadelphia Auto Show Black-Tie Gala. Look for a column on that event next!
Below: Wanda Mora, Wanda Mora Entertainment, and Queen Diva. Mora invited me to the grand opening and re-branding of the famed Roosevelt Pub, which is now going to be called R Bar, after it changed hands last year. She promises they'll still have the best burgers around.
One of the signature experiences at the HOD are the different rooms offering various entertainment—from live music of the local band Split Decision, which has risen to the top of the market by playing many of the area’s most popular night spots, to the hottest deejays like Enferno, who performed his Live Remix Project, which includes an intense LED light show provided by Vu Productions. Also there, DJ Eddie Tully, Royale, and Perry Angelozzi (left), here with wife Patty.
Below: Frank Phifer, Secrets Limo, and Lisa Coroniti.
Below: Amanda Giddings, sommelier/manager at The Capital Grille, and Michael Dana.
Below: Tony Frick, Alissa Ingram, Fox 29 executive producer, Sheena Parveen, NBC 10 meteorologist, Marshall Harris, and Samantha Trasatti. Now you can catch the wake-up weather with Parveen in her new permanent slot at 11 p.m., right before your sweet dreams.
Below: Noah Hoffman and Erica Busch ready to hit the dance floor.
Below: Stacey Kracher, Anne Nikolaus, Allison Smith and Aida Sparta.
Below: Allison Papson, Erin Como, Nashville Fox 17, Jennifer Sherlock, Jenna Communications, Kristen Johanson, CBS 3, and Allyson Fergione, account manager at Entertainment Cruises.
Below: The Sports Cave at the Shops at Liberty Place was auctioning off sports memorabilia with proceeds going to Friends Are By Your Side. Checking out the Brian Dawkins photo was Jessica Rankin and Tommy Gow, who won their HOD tickets through a contest held by WMMR. On a side note, Dawkins appeared at the Sports Cave on Friday and nearly 500 fans came out to the meet-and-greet.
Below: Kevin Lewis, Lauren Bailey and Robert Davidson.
Hair of the Dog was created by Dan Cronin and Rob Molinaro of Chorus Communications. Below, Cronin takes over the DJ duties in one of the rooms, and in no time, the crowd was in a frenzy. The last hours of the party are always my favorite as the finely dressed crowd takes to the dance floor and everyone really expresses themselves. (Check out my blog PhillyChitChat.com for video of a dance-off.)
Below: Carol Drumstas, Brown Forman, Evan Solomon, CEO at EFS Networks, John Curry, 40 Love Tennis Pro Shop, and Lynsie Solomon. Happy Birthday Evan!!
Below: Chase Lenfest and Damon Feldman.
Below: Stacey Leib, Rich Dunn and Stephanie Rybczyk.
Below: Ryan Smith, Elena Demire, Ruth Kaufman and Taylor Mills. You might not know who Taylor Mills is, but there's a chance you've been in one of his clubs, whether Gatsby's, Taylors Bar & Grill, and now, Top Dog in Cherry Hill, next to my favorite pizza place, King of Pizza.
Below: Pop artists Glenn Stevens and Perry Milou created another "live painting" together this year, and it was auctioned off for $3,000 with a portion of the proceeds going to Friends Are By Your Side. Top row: Marissa Stevens, Erin Pusz, and Eliana and Mike Raggio.
Below: Caught on the dance floor having a good time, Jazzy Jeff Morrison, Jimmy "Kamron" Cameron and Trina Sawicki.
Below: Mike Kerrigan tells me that this was his first time at Hair O' the Dog as he just turned 21 a few weeks ago. He'll be back next year because it was a blast. This is Stefania Incollingo's third time around and she says each year gets better and better. It's a great place to go with a large group of friends, as well as an event to make new friends—as Mike and Stefania can attest, having just met that night.
SEE MORE: HughE Dillon's photos from Hair O' the Dog 2012 party.