Reading Terminal’s Valentine to the Market Gala

A crowd of 600 tasted the Market's fantastic food and danced the night away.

Reading Terminal Market’s Valentine to the Market Gala was held Saturday night. The benefit brought out a crowd of almost 600. There were interactive love-themed activities, including a love potion station, a sketch artist, tarot card readings, and a make-your-own love pillow station. There were also live performances on two different stages, and the dance floor was packed till nearly midnight. Proceeds benefited the Reading Terminal Market Preservation Trust. Pictured: Paul Steinke, general manager of the Reading Terminal Market (left) and Paul Levy, CEO of Center City District.

During the celebrity “Twist-Off,” Philadelphia personalities twisted as many pretzels as possible in three minutes to the sound of Chubby Checker’s “The Twist.” Participating were CBS 3’s Jim Donovan, who was also pretty good at doing the twist, and Laura Burkhardt, Where Magazine. Also participating: WMCN’s Dawn Stensland-Mendte, Philadelphia Daily News columnist Stu Bykofsky, 93.3 WMMR’s “Preston & Steve Show” producer Marisa Magnatta, Tara Nurin, of Foobooz, Greater Philadelphia Film Office’s Sharon Pinkenson, and Philadelphia District Attorney Seth Williams.

Below: Philadelphia Daily News columnist Stu Bykofsky and WMCN’s Dawn Stensland-Mendte with a “pretzel choker.”

Below: Mark Beyerle, SpecialtyUSA, announces that WMMR’s Marisa Magnatta won the pretzel-twisting contest, as Dawn Stensland-Mendte and D.A. Seth Williams look on.

Below: Sharon Pinkenson, and Joseph Weiss, Electronic Ink.

Below: Dan Reinherz and Hadas Kuznits. The happy duo are patiently waiting for the birth of their son, who is 12 days late. They are open to any suggestions on how hurry up their introduction. Saturday, before the gala, the parents-in-waiting visited an acupuncturist, which resulted in a very relaxing afternoon, but no baby.

Below: Gregg Graves, McKinsey & Company, Michael Braunstein, CBS Radio, and Todd Bloom were hanging out near Bassetts Ice Cream. This week, no doubt, they’re hitting the gym extra hard too.

Below: When artist Denise Fike isn’t working in her studio, she’s doing “On the Spot Fashion Sketches” at parties, wedding showers or events. Saturday night, she was drawing up a storm for guests at the gala.

Below: Bobby Iovine, Terry Iovine and Jimmy Iovine told me that in June, their niece was having her wedding reception at the Reading Terminal Market. They tell me the market does a fairly good business as rental space, with the greatest number of rentals being for bar mitzvahs.

Below: What does the future hold for Kristina Jenkins, editor at Where Magazine, asks palm reader Madame Nanushka?

Below: City of Hope’s Harry Giordano and Michele DiVeterano, with Laurel Fairworth. This year, City of Hope’s big wedding cake competition “Let Them Eat Cake” moves across the river to Merion Caterers in Cinnaminson, on Monday, April 15, 2013.

Below: Michelle and Bruce Shannon.

Below: Krystal Souvanlasy, South Street Headhouse District, and Tomas Delgado. Krystal tells me that Supper, Percy Street Barbecue and Brauhaus Schmitz are all participating in Philly Mag’s Philly Cooks food tour on Wednesday.

Below: Ben Haney, Mac’s Tavern, Brian Cyle, and Evan Urbania, Chatterblast.

Below: Mark Focht and Margo Berg.

Below: Paul Levy, with daughter Cora and wife Carrie Rickey.

Below: Rodd Bender and Cari Feiler Bender. Cari reminds me that this Friday is Black-Tie Gay Bingo, where they will honor former State Rep Babette Josephs as 2013 Favorite Straight Person of the Year.