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PEOPLE & PLACES

with paula

It Was a Starry Night at Rollins as the Holt School Celebrated China

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always get lost when I visit the Rollins College campus.

There’s no trouble finding the place — I’m not that blonde. But once I’m there I’m always overwhelmed by the charm of the brick-lined streets, the grandness of the historic architecture, the breeze off the lake. And on this particular evening, to top it all off, I knew I was about to experience, rain or shine, a starry, starry night. The Starry Starry Night Gala, that is — the annual fundraiser benefiting the Hamilton Holt School, which offers evening graduate and undergraduate degree programs primarily for working adults. When I entered the decked-out Harold and Ted Alfond Sports Center, I felt as though I had been transported to an exotic Asian locale. That wasn’t surprising, considering the theme of the evening was “Celebrate China.” The auction items and the food further carried the theme forward. Following cocktail hour, a very energetic host struck a win-

dow-rattling gong, indicating that it was time for us to make our ascent up the bleachers to the second floor. There we were treated to a performance of the traditional Asian Dragon dance and served dinner “Asian family” style, in straw baskets with red chopsticks. There was a full agenda of entertainment for the evening including several martial-art performances and a man juggling a bowl that was big enough to serve as a planter for one of my azalea bushes. The live auction was a central focus of the event, organized by the American Fundraising Foundation and supervised by Wade and Barbara West. The event was underwritten by Walt Disney World, Tupperware Brands Corporation, the Orlando Magic, Harriett Lake, Concord Management, Epoch Properties, Fields Auto Group, GrayRobinson, Massey Communications and Winter Park Construction, among others.

1. Marylou Bloch, Abigail Rizor, Hattie Wolfe 2. Kris Leach, Jo Gregg, Michann Acevedo, Jennifer Carraway, Rico Campos II 3. Karen Du, Wenxian Zhang 4. Nancy Port Schwalb, Sam Click

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PHOTOS: Forever Xpressions

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All that glitters …

Anniversary ◆ Birthday Engagement ◆ Wedding

Make Her Feel Special Since 1974

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PEOPLE AND PLACES

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1. WESH-Channel 2 News’ Pat Clarke and friends 2. Orlando Ballet dancers and Tricia Earl 3. Rey Tabarrok, Andrea Batchelor 4. Robert Earl, Patrick Lyons, Tricia Earl, Robert Hill

PHOTOS: brion price

BOWLING FOR DANCERS

I’m a sucker for a good play on words. So when I got an invitation to a bowling-themed Orlando Ballet benefit nicknamed “Bowl-Erina” — well, let’s just say I was bowled over. The April 16 event, formally dubbed Pins for Pirouettes, was part of the grand opening festivities for Kings Bowl Orlando, a classy bowling center — you dare not say “alley” anymore — on International Drive. It’s the fourth location for Patrick Lyons’ Boston-based chain and the second socalled “boutique bowling” center in Orlando. Robert and Tricia Earl, longtime supporters of the ballet, were there with Lyons and his enthusiastic team to host the event. The evening came alive with the style and energy of the 1960s; the design, the music and the food all worked in unison to create the magic. 90

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I always enjoy the Central Florida Rat Pack. I just never get tired of their on-stage banter and lively renditions of classic crooner tunes. Frank Sinatra is played by Armando Diaz, Sammy Davis Jr. is played by Steve Roman and Dean Martin played by Felix J. Deneau. Watching them perform is almost like sitting with the high-rollers at the Sands back in the day. I ran into Richard and Noelle Siegel, son and daughterin-law of time-share mogul and reluctant documentary film co-star David Siegel. I also learned how to make a gummy bear martini from the super-friendly staff. And I could easily spot the ballet dancers mingling with the guests, even in bowling shoes, because they move so gracefully. And at the end of each lane and on every screen there was video of the region’s only professional ballet company, which is celebrating its 40th anniversary next season. Check it out at orlandoballet.org. Kudos, of course, to all the ballet volunteers, including the officers on its board of directors: Ava Doppelt, Judy Sandefur, Matthew J. Ahearn, Terry Dola, Tricia Earl, Rosemary O’Shea, Scott A. Silzer and Sibille Pritchard. The artistic director is the amazing Robert Hill. JUNE 2013


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MY FAVORITE HARRIETT

“The greatest thing about getting old is that you lose your eyesight at about the same time you get your wrinkles.” That’s yet another memorable quip from the delightful Harriett Lake, overheard at the fifth annual Friends of Harriett Luncheon. The event, which benefits women’s cancer care at the MD Anderson Cancer Center Orlando, this year honored Central Florida community leader Carol Massey, philanthropist and wife of pest-control magnate Harvey Massey. Harriett herself chooses the honoree and the charity each year. “Carol is a gorgeous example of someone dedicated to improving the lives of others,” she said. She might well have been talking about herself, of course. Harriett supports a wide range of charities across education, healthcare and the arts. Her organization, Friends Of Harriett, was established in 2008 and is led by Meredith McWaters who, along with Lois Silverberg and a team of excessively enthusiastic volunteers (myself included), assists Orlando area charities. This particular elegant event was held at the Rosen Centre Hotel and featured a high-end silent auction, performances by the cast of The D Word and a drawing for a $5,000 Neiman 92

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4. 1. Carol Massey, Jeremy Gamble, Andrea Massey-Farrell 2. Harriett Lake, Tricia Earl 3. Gentlemen for Carol and Harriett 4. Sherri Holley, Lois Silverberg, Meredith McWaters, Andrea Massey-Farrell, Carol Massey, Harriett Lake Marcus Shopping Spree. More than $200,000 was raised. “It is such an honor to be selected as the charitable beneficiary of Harriett’s Favorite Things,” says Jeffrey Muddell, foundation vice president at Orlando Health. “The philanthropic support raised through this event will allow us to provide ongoing, state-of-the-art, connected care for women battling multiple types of cancer in our local community.” Other members of the advisory board for this year’s Harriett’s Favorite Things function were: Nancy Bagby, Sandy Hostetter, Rita Lowndes, Andrea Massey-Farrell, Denise McKinny, Joan Pohl, Alexis Puigh, Mary Rumberger, Lynn Sullivan and Jackie Zollo.

PAULA AT THE PAINT OUT

If I’m allowed to have an all-time favorite art exhibit, the Winter Park Paint Out, a benefit for the Polasek Museum JUNE 2013


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3. 1. Chuck Koch, Ken DeWaard, Bill Farnsworth, Anne Koch 2. John Polasek 3. Molly Lind, Jennifer Calder, Pam Paisley 4. Sara Reid, Walt Komanski, Gary Hollingsworth & Sculpture Gardens in Winter Park, has got to be it. Here’s the idea: Invite 25 plein air artists — that is, artists who paint outdoors — to visit this picture-postcard city and send them out to find scenes they’d like to capture on canvas. Have them bring those paintings — sometimes so recently completed that the paint hasn’t dried — back to the museum, where they’re sold as a fundraiser. I celebrated it along with 400 other art lovers at a garden party at the Polasek last month to observe the conclusion of the weeklong event, now in its fifth year. As I threaded through the crowd and the artists, viewing the paintings on display, I recognized a beautiful rendering of a favorite chair of mine on Park Avenue, a perfect perch from which to sip a Pinot Grigio. Another painting reminded me of the way the light at sunset caresses the wooden dock behind Hillstone. Another, depicting Lombardi’s Seafood by night, made me think of the ORLANDO-LIFE.COM

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4. countless oysters I’ve bought there for summer cookouts. There were, overall, 160 paintings created over the course of the event, and they ranged in price from $225 to $3,800. Eighty-six of them were sold. Such a win-win-win it was: a win for the Polasek and a win for the artists, who get to pursue their passion and earn half the proceeds of the paintings they sell. The other half goes to the museum, which is a win for all of us because it helps to support one of Central Florida’s most important cultural treasures. n

THERE’S MORE ONLINE

Using your mobile device, scan the QR code or go to orlando-life.com and see more pictures and stories from these and other events held throughout Central Florida. Native Floridian Paula Wyatt is an Orlando event planner, socialmedia expert and entrepreneur whose companies include Posh Able Events, Posh Able Image Builders and the nonprofit Posh Abilities. You can reach her at paula@poshableevents.com. ORLANDO LIFE

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Orlando Life Magazine - People and Places with Paula June 2013