From festive sangria to star-studded luncheons, we've got the scoop on the latest social news.
| 6:00 a.m. December 14, 2016
Jen Rust and 15 of her closest girlfriends enjoyed an intimate holiday soirée at the home of Rust’s boyfriend, Steve Johnson, in Tierra Verde on Dec. 10. The tradition started last year as a white elephant party and grew to a dinner party this year that even featured a signature cocktail: White Christmas Sangria with cranberries and rosemary.
Guests enjoyed the drink with light appetizers before savoring a meal of baked ziti and salad, all of which were made by Rust.
Joe Volpe, executive director for the Sarasota Ballet, was honored at the ballet’s “A Jeweled Holiday Soirée” Dec. 5 for his service to the company and the performing arts world at large. After receiving his award of recognition from Director Iain Webb, Volpe surprised everyone by singing a song that he wrote to honor outgoing Marketing and Development Director Janet Ginn. Laughter filled the room when he apologized mid-song for the choppiness — he wrote the song earlier that same day.
It ain’t fiction...
Straight up, now tell us you didn’t hear who graced us with her presence in the Michael’s On East ballroom Dec. 7? The one and only Paula Abdul was the speaker at Jewish Federation of Sarasota Manatee Women’s Day 2016, where she gave some little-known insight into her Jewish heritage. Abdul dazzled as she made her entrance in pink pants and a chic white blouse for the special pre-luncheon meet-and-greet coffee hour. Abdul laughed, embraced and posed for photos with the event’s top sponsors and donors at the exclusive gathering at Michael’s Wine Cellar.
Fa La La Fashion … Everyone looked gorgeous at the Holly Ball at the Field Club, but there was one guest who really stuck out. We think Fran Becker deserves a special shoutout for his Santa-studded pants ... A Grand Success … Just in case you didn’t hear, it was recently announced that Wine Women & Shoes 2016 raised more than $500,000 for the Forty Carrots Family Center’s family program. Cheers to many years of philanthropic success!