Opening of Theatre Exile’s Rizzo


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 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 »

Eat, Drink, Dance and Cure Cancer

Peter Dilsheimer and Madison Alig with Jaclyn Osterstock and Derek Jameson

Peter Dilsheimer and Madison Alig, with Jaclyn Osterstock and Derek Jameson.

The Wistar Ambassadors hosted Eat, Drink, Dance and Cure Cancer last Friday night at Loews Hotel on the 33rd floor. The Wistar Ambassadors are a group of young residents of the Philadelphia region, between the ages of 25 and 40 years old, who want to learn more about the bold new advances in cancer research at The Wistar Institute — and find new ways of raising local and national awareness of these efforts.

There were several scientists on hand, easily recognized in their lab coats, to chat about the latest research Wistar. Guests enjoyed light bites, bid on silent auction items such as trips, clothing and other experiences, and danced to the tunes of Dj Adrian Hardy. This Friday, Wistar Institute honors Dr. Russel E. Kaufman for his contributions as President and CEO of The Wistar Institute for the last 12 years.

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Susan Komen Breast Cancer Pink Tide Ball

Bill Culp, Karen Lynch and Allyson Lynch. The Lynch's are mother daughter breast cancer survivors and were thrilled to be able to attend the Pink Tide Gala together.

Bill Culp, Karen Lynch and Allyson Lynch. The Lynch’s are mother daughter breast cancer survivors and were thrilled to be able to attend the Pink Tide Gala together.

Susan G. Komen Philadelphia presented its 14th annual Pink Tie Ball, this year at Vie. The theme was Pink Tide Ball, and the event space was magnificently decorated by Scott Rothenberger’s PLACE with lots of sea creatures, trees, and jelly fish at every corner to the delight of guests. The event attracted nearly 650 of the community’s most avid breast cancer supporters to further help Komen Philadelphia save lives and advance research.

The evening started out with a cocktail party, where guests dined on all the delicious Cescaphe delights including seafood, pasta and salad. Then they headed into the main event space for dinner and the program. There were two award winners: ShopRite Supermarkets, which received the “Friend in the Fight” award for supporting Komen events and the company’s employee-friendly medical benefits package; American Association for Cancer Research, which received the “Beacon of Hope” award.

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Fashion Under the Shambles

The Second Annual Fashion Under the Shambles took place Wedesday night and the weather was delightfully cool, encouraging fashionistas to break out their stylish fall clothing. The evening started with a cocktail party, with sponsors Bridget Foy’s, Bistro Romano, Cavanaugh’s Headhouse and His and Hers Restaurant. By 7 pm, guests filled the rows of seats along the runway; Cory Wade, master of ceremonies, took the stage and chatted about the impressive fashion scene happening in Philadelphia before introducing the 21 South Street district businesses that would be showcased during the 60-minute show. At the conclusion of the show Corey encouraged folks to come to Fabric Row’s monthly shopping stroll on October 23.

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Big Brothers Big Sisters 100th Anniversary Gala


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.
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The Opening of LP Steak

Luke Palladino, Chef/Owner LP Steaks and finace Kristine Kurilko

Luke Palladino, Chef/Owner LP Steaks and fiance Kristine Kurilko.

Monday night Chef Luke Palladino held a sneak preview party for friends, family and guests at his new eatery, LP Steak at ValleyForge Casino Resort. The upscale steakhouse passed around samples of classic cuts of prime beef, chops, and seafood. The full service bar served local spirits and craft beers, poured California and Italian wines, and created classic cocktails with the Palladino twist. The 4,400-square-foot space officially opens on Friday night and was designed in a rustic steakhouse feel by Gruber Design Associates. LP Steak joins the Luke Palladino Hospitality Group, with restaurants in Philly and Atlantic City, NJ.

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PHLDiversity Annual Luncheon


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 »

Mark Segal’s Book-Signing

John J. "Johnny Doc" Dougherty, Business Manager of Local 98, Chris Bartlett Executive Director of William Way, and David L. Cohen, Senior Executive Vice President of Comcast Corporation. When Cohen took the podium to pay tribute to Segal, he stated that the only person who bought more books for his "workers' was Dougherty. His two biggest fans.

Wednesday night a room full of movers and shakers gathered at the Independence Visitor Center to pay tribute to a national LGBT trailblazer, Mark Segal, who was celebrating the publication of his long-awaited memoir, And Then I Danced: Traveling the Road to LGBT Equality. The night began for most of us crossing the NBC10 picket line of striking photographers; John “Johnny Doc” Dougherty was a few steps behind me, shaking hands with a few of the protestors — members of his union — and giving them his support. In comes David L. Cohen, executive vice president of Comcast, NBC10’s parent company. No problem. Cohen and Dougherty exchanged a handshake, and the two talked for a long time, even posing for a photo for me. Both then joined the long line of other guests waiting their turn for the man of the hour Mark Segal to sign their books.

Photos after the jump »

Opening Night at Opera Philadelphia

opera featured image

Fall gala season has arrived. Wednesday night the Philadelphia Orchestra held its opening night and dinner at the Kimmel Center. Friday, Opera Philadelphia celebrated its opening night with a grand celebration on Broad Street, under a white tent that withstood the winds of a nor’easter that soaked the region last week. A parade of glamorously dressed guests arrived for the cocktail party and dinner before the opening night of La traviata, an opera in three acts by Giuseppe Verdi. Dr. Ady L. Djerassi and Dr. Robert Golub  were Opening Night Gala chairs. After La traviata, where the audience gave the performers a three-minute standing ovation, theatergoers and young friends enjoyed an after party under the tent on Broad Street,. Proceeds from the gala went go to fund “Opera on the Mall,”  which is on October 16. It’s a free HD broadcast of La traviata which will play on a movie screen in front of Independence Hall that evening. It was rescheduled to October 16 after rain cancelled it last Saturday.

Photos after the jump »

The Continental Turns 20


Stephen Starr’s Continental celebrated it’s 20th anniversary with a party on Sunday night bringing together original servers from the week the restaurant opened, alumni servers from over the years, customers, family and friends. Guests enjoyed passed hors d’oeuvres, a charcuterie spread and an amazing dessert buffet.

Photos after the jump »

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