+ Love …
Another Sarasota beauty is engaged. Kelly Morrell will wed Burt Romanoff, an attorney at Norton Hammersly, before the year is out. Perhaps just barely before. He popped the question March 12 at “Polo Under the Palms.” Kelly was on the event committee. He complimented how lovely the event was and said, “The only thing that would make this night better is if you would spend the rest of your life with me.” And, then, he set off the fireworks he had brought to celebrate.
+ … and marriage
Long time (as in 20 years) couple Fred Mackenzie and Nancy Lee invited 20-plus of their friends to celebrate Fred’s 85th birthday March 13, at Libby’s. Fred is an engaging speaker, and as he was recounting his (interesting) lives, plural, he mentioned oh-so-casually that he and Nancy were married when her family was all here for a visit — in 2007. It took a minute before one of the guests said, “Wait a minute? You’re married?” Indeed, they are. Congratulations and best wishes, however belated! Among the guests at the party: Carol and Frank von Allmen, Susan Brainerd and Alan Quinby, Betty York, Helen Kesler, and April Mast.
+ … and an institution you can’t disparage
The Children’s Guardian Fund, a support organization for the Guardian ad Litem Program, hosted a luncheon to honor more than 200 of its volunteers Friday, March 11, at Lakewood Ranch Golf & Country Club. The volunteers are advocates for children in state custody. The fund provides monies to meet these kids’ needs from educational tutoring and summer camp to little-but-big things, like soccer cleats or a prom dress.
A big night at the Asolo … The new Gulf Coast Community Foundation program called “10,000 Reasons to Give” adds $10,000 when a donor opens a fund or adds to an existing one in the amount of $100,000 or more. It works. Foundation rep Scott Anderson presented a $110,000 check from an anonymous donor to Asolo Board President Susan Buck at the opening night dinner preceding “Las Meninas” March 18. Among those attending: Eric and Roberta Fliss, from Miami; he is managing director of the new South Miami-Dade Cultural Arts Center. “Las Meninas” will go to Fliss’ theater when it finishes here … A big idea from GCCF … the new “Gulf Coast Gives” program makes it possible for anyone to donate any amount to projects posted on its website by non-profits. It is working, too. Last week, an anonymous donor funded all the human services projects listed. (Now there are more, of course). Test drive at www.GulfCoastGives.org … Cucumbers, champagne and chandeliers … Tina Little and Queens Wreath Jewels hosted a tea with finger sandwiches and other treats to show the Ivanka Trump Jewelry collection March 17, at Shoogie Boogies, in Towles Court. The collection is available at The Met, on St. Armands Circle.
+ Black Tie Affair
Orchid Ball 2011 ‘The Great Gatsby’
6:30 p.m. Saturday, April 2 • Marie Selby Botanical Gardens • Tickets $250 • For reservations call 366-5731 or firstname.lastname@example.org
West Egg is coming to west of the trail for the 30th annual Orchid Ball – The Great Gatsby. Nick Carraway, Jay Gatsby, Daisy and Tom Buchanan are all expected. Chairwoman Kristiana Serbin and her committee are doing several special things in honor of that milestone. They have invited past chairs of the event to serve as honorary chairs of this one, and the list includes Carmen Baskind, Debbi Benedict, Beth Cannata, Ann Esworthy, Nora Johnson, Mary Kenealy-Barabetta, Cornelia Matson, Karin Parry Leerveld, Laura Peters, Cindy Peterson, Betty Sandhagen, Michael Saunders, Margarete van Antwerpen and Emily Walsh Parry. Because 30 years is the pearl anniversary, there will also be a special auction of pearl jewelry — from chocolate to freshwater — in addition to the usual silent-and-live auctions. Finally, Kate Walsh Honea is choreographing a piece that dancers from the Sarasota Ballet School will perform at the end of the evening.