+ Black Tie Bash … inside stories
Winners by a nose … Standout man Pedro Reis beat runner-up Geoffrey Michel by only a few votes. Ditto for Forty Carrots’ Firefly Gala’s win over the Neuro Challenge Foundation’s “Cause 4 Fashion” … Missing in action … A calendar malfunction kept Reis from attending the party, but he sent Circus Sarasota staffers Scott Hinckley and Jennifer Mitchell with face masks to represent him. Standout couple Elenor and John Maxheim were in Budapest, Hungary … Getting out the vote … The prize in this category would have to go to Ariane Dart and Minta Moncrief Getzen, who set up a voting station in the lobby of Forty Carrots and provided free coffee to anyone who would stop and vote for standout event nominee “Firefly Gala” … Standout story … Nominee Wendy Feinstein, just home from Spain, reports she was attacked by a Barbary monkey while climbing the Rock of Gibraltar. You can’t make up stuff like that … Standout dress … Ann Logan’s seahorse print in a color scheme that perfectly matched the event’s beach party graphics … Standout shoe … Kyla Weiner’s DayGlo lemon-lime Manolo Blahniks were from his shop in the Wynn Hotel in Las Vegas (where else?) ... Hats off to … Penny Hill for her adorable fedora, Katherine Meisenbach for her glittery newsboys cap from the 1970s and her escort, gallery owner Chris Stakenborg, who says his fedora was “ripped from the hands of Armani when it was not even for sale” … A heart-warming conclusion … Neuro Challenge Foundation President Doreen Sutherland shared feedback from vote-getter Sid Custodio in Menlo Park, Calif., who said, “Glad I was a helper … it felt good.”
+ Looking ahead to the 2011-12 season
Comparisons being as irresistible as they are invidious, this column once again analyzes the philanthropic events submitted to the Black Tie calendar at the start of the season. And a promising season it is! Highlights include a Glasser-Schoenbaum Human Services Center event honoring the amazing Betty Schoenbaum (Nov. 6) and a gala celebrating Maestro Victor DeRenzi’s 30th year with the Sarasota Opera (March 27). Nostalgia for the Jazz Age is big; the Jewish Family & Children’s Services’ gala is “Le Grand Cabaret” (Dec. 18 and already sold out). The triennial Sarasota Memorial Hospital Foundation benefit is the “Corinthian Supper Club and Speakeasy” (Feb. 25). And the Asolo Rep’s big event is “Ragtime Revival” (March 17). Something Josephine Baker-ish would appear a good wardrobe investment. So would something pink to wear to Key to the Cure “The Pink Party” (Oct. 20) and Mote Marine’s “Black, White and Pink All Over” (Oct. 29). The latter features the opening of a new Mote exhibit of a type of penguin that has pink feathers around its eyes. Who knew?
For the third time in four seasons, the first weekend in November is the season’s busiest, this year with seven events. There are fewer parties on the calendar versus a year ago, but it remains to be seen if that’s less actual activity or just later planning and listing. Be sure that your benefit is on the Black Tie calendar. Send the name of the event, organization benefiting, date, time, location, chairman, contact with phone and email, website and ticket price to mschechter@YourObserver.com. If we don’t know about it, we can’t cover it.
Round trips … Jamie Schoenfeld and her hubby, Nebojsa Tminic, moved in July 2010 to Reston, Va., and enjoyed it but decided they liked Sarasota better and returned here this July. Scott George and John Mason are back in Oyster Bay around the corner from where they used to live after a year and change in Shaker Heights, Ohio. And George is back in real estate with Michael Saunders & Co. … Rock & Run for Recovery … a festival celebrating recovery is set for Oct. 21 and Oct. 22, at South Lido Beach Park. More information, call 356-0173 … Hearts Desire turns five … This charming boutique in Bradenton’s Village of the Arts is the heart’s desire of graphic designer Vicki Rollo, who has contributed her time and talent to uncountable Sarasota non-profits. There will be food, liquid refreshment and fun to celebrate from 6 to 10 p.m. Oct. 7. RSVP to 302-1069 … Riverview Reunion … No. 25 for the class of 1986 takes place the weekend of Oct. 20. For more information, visit www.rhsfoundation.org.
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Daylight Saving Time starts 2 a.m. Sunday, so be sure to set your alarm accordingly.
The Tabernacle Christian School middle school student Lauren Medred, an East County resident, earned top vocal honors, taking first place in vocal solo female category of the Florida League of Christian School’s Festival of the Academics and Arts Feb. 28 and March 1 at Southeastern University in Lakeland.
Manatee County schools dominated a state technology competition with five of six top-three finishes earned by Manatee County schools during the 35th annual Technology Student Association State Competition late February.