CharityWorks Dream Ball


How funny that the very same day that I had a frank discussion about the medocrity of charity galas, I attended the Charity Works Dream Ball at the National Building Museum! We were complaining that charity program's often are too long, have stale decorations, and push mature auction items. Not Charity Works!

Kudos to Miriam Pollin, the new Executive Director of Charity Works! The event really did "Soar." From the majestic billowing drapery and decor, to the powerful male aerialists whose performance greeted visitors as they sat for dinner, the night was wonderful.

Event Chair, Fernando Murias proclaimed the Charity Works Ball to be one of the top 5 Galas in town, and I have to agree. What a mix of style and sophistication, fun and philanthropy!

I have to thank Cindy and Evan Jones for providing my seat at the table, and Victoria Michael and Pamela Sorenson for a large portion of the fun. The saddest part... my evening clutch wasn't large enough to fit my entire box of Leonidas chocolates given as the evening parting gift.

For an actual write-up of the event, check out my post for DC Style Mag at http://www.dcstylemag.com/blog_main.cfm?P=%23%21M%27G%0A

National Book Festival


For 6 years, the Library of Congress and First Lady Laura Bush have hosted a National Book Festival on the Mall, welcoming all with a love of literacy to embrace the day, the books, the authors, and the librarians!

For three of those years, I have been proud to serve as a National Book Festival volunteer as a member of the Junior League. The Junior League, in support of its literacy mission, provides the greatest number of volunteers for the National Book Festival each year.

This year I spent the day as a Captain in the Pavillion of States, where each state and territory hosts a table to inform visitors about literacy initiatives in their state, tells about famous authors from that state, and imparts a little trivia knowledge. For the kids, we provided a map of the United States, and if they can show they visited every state (stickers or stamps from each state table posted on their map) they won a special bookmark!

As always, it was a wonderful way to spend the day and reinforce my commitment to literacy in the District.

Reiss' Pieces

While I do love to share style tips, I will admit I've been keeping my MAJOR style secret all to myself. But after Thursday night, I just can't keep my mouth shut anymore, and to tell you the truth, I'm not so sure it's a secret anymore.


September has been a Fashion Month for the District. Runway shows, designer fashion events, and style previews abound. Thursday night, my favorite store (yes, my absolute FAVORITE!) held it's Fall preview runway event.


Reiss is a British retailer with flagships in NYC and DC. Located on Wisconsin Ave. in Georgetown, it's been my go-too spot (especially for unique cocktail dresses) over the past year. While I hesitated to let everyone in on my style secret, I realized Thursday that the "Reiss is out of the bag"... and on all the lovely ladies in DC!

DC Spa Week


September = Stress.

Well, every month is really stressful, but I've been a slave to my masters thesis lately and while writer's block is not my problem... narrowing to one main topic has always been a challenge.

What delight to find in my inbox a piece of relaxation. DC has a Spa Week! October 15-21... right about the time I should be done with the first draft. (Topic on target!) $50 spa treatments!

Steal the deals at http://www.spaweek.org/

Mediocre Mango

I'm prefacing this post with disclosure. Yes, I'm bitter that I was not selected to model at this event. Bitter. With a side order of... bitter.


Still, I was kind of suprised that the Capitol File sponsored party for MNG by Mango wasn't better attended. Since the better part of the world (my world - DC is my Narnia!) came to the DC Magazine 2nd Anniversary and Cusp runway show earlier this month, I thought DC was in the mood for some serious fashion phenomenons this Fall. Lima brought out some heavyweights - Erwin and James Gomez... Paul Wharton..Aidah Fontenot...- but somehow the big bang was missing. Sad, because I absolutely love Capitol File!!


I was going to tell "Mr. Mango" that he should have hired me to model his Fall fashions when I saw him later at Teatro, but I got distracted. Fran Drescher was there celebrating her birthday. (A little bird told me it may have been her 50th... but she doesn't look it at all.) Ok, maybe she should have been modeling for Mango!
These were THE hot ladies at the Capitol File/Mango fashion event at Lima Wednesday night.

Team Spirit

One of my newest projects with the Greater Washington Sports Alliance is the promotion of our Team Spirit program. We promote, support, and fundraise for local Olympic hopefuls. I mean, I know I'm not going to get to Beijing anytime soon, but lets definitely send lots of hometown folks to cheer for!!

Currently, there are two members of Team Spirit, Margie Shapiro (Triathlon) and Kristen Allan (Judo). We held a fundraiser for Kristen Tuesday night at Landini Brothers Restaurant in Old Towne Alexandria.

The turnout was fantastic, the venue wonderful (even more so because of Franco Landini's generosity) and we raised a good start for Kristen. And I'm not just saying that because she could flip me over and drop me to the ground with little effort!

Go Team USA!!

Goodbye Baseball at RFK





I HAD to go to the last baseball game at RFK Stadium. Yes, there was also a Redskins game Sunday afternoon, but this was the last baseball game EVER at RFK!

Dina Davalle and Pamela Sorensen were headed to the game, too, so Anna Kimsey and I offered to carpool and had them join us in the Diamond Club for the outrageous brunch served there before the Sunday games.
The house was packed. Over 40,000 fans... and we won! We deafeated the Phillies 5 to 3.

As you probably know, I'm a HUGE fan of the Racing Presidents. I just knew that Sunday was going to be the day when Teddy was going to have his first win... but no. He raced to the new stadium instead, only showing up later in the game, and missing the crowd chanting, "We want Teddy! We want Teddy!" during the race. From what I understood from Stan Kasten, we may have to wait a long time to see Teddy break the winner's ribbon.



To commemorate the occasion, players shook hands with fans as they entered the stadium, a former Senator pitcher threw out the last "first pitch," and the team came together to dig up home plate so that it can be transeferred to its place in the new stadium for the opening next Spring.


Go Nats!



House Party of the Year



It isn't often that we get printed invitations in the mail these days. Given my love for traditional ettiquette, I knew I must attend, but as usual, had no idea what I was getting myself into! My friend, Pam Brown was having a housewarming with her new roommates (Stephen Ball, Quinn Bradlee and Lindsey Volckmann), and I was invited to dinner, drinks, and dancing to enjoy the house. I didn't expect such an affair - and what a house!




Arriving late, just as the cocktail hour was ending, I quickly toured the house - amazing!! - but found everyone outside, enjoying the fresh air... and waiting to head down to where the tennis courts were covered with a HUGE tent and seated dinner arrangements.

It did seem uncannily like a wedding, but the band was awesome, the catering delicious, and the social sights unbelievable! Ben Bradlee and Sally Quinn were there, of course, along with other of the Fab Four's parents... such as Pamela Brown's mother, Phyllis George, Miss America 1971, and the list only goes on from there!


With the party such an amazing success, I'm sure the house will see much more entertaining. Rumors already abound concerning a film project/cooking show to feature Quinn and Stephen's talents...

USO Casino Night




Wow! What a difference a year makes!

Last year, Miss Maryland, Miss Greater Richmond and I were the featured guests... this year USO metro got Pat Sajak to come to USO Casino Night at the Sheraton National. Miss DC, Miss Virginia, and Miss Greater Richmond 2007 were in attendance, along with Rhett Butler, a champion in the World Series of Poker Tournament.


The silent auction was awesome, the guests were generous with their donations and their honor and support for our troops, and the USO-metro staff and volunteers were amazing, as always! Thanks to Denise and Donna for escorting me throughout the event.


Although I do not have a personal connection to a serviceman, I am always proud to support our troops and those that sacrifice to ensure my freedom and way of life. Thank you to them, and thank you to USO metro for allowing me the opportunity to give back. You all are my heros!

DC Magazine's 2nd Year

Artefacto, Artefacto - where is that?? Oh yeah! It's that HUGE modern furniture store on M Street. I can't afford anything in the store, so I usually stay away from those places, but not last night! DC Magazine had the brilliant idea to turn the show rooms into it's own "show room" for the 2nd Anniversary bash. We all tested out the comfy couches while the CUSP fashion show took place.

To Peter Abrahams and one of the best magazines in DC - congrats! Here's to many more!

SneakerBall!


Over 1,000 attendees witnessed the induction of Debbie Yow, Frank Robinson, and Bobby Mitchell into the Greater Washington Sports Alliance Hall of Champions last night at the National Building Museum for the Fourth Annual SneakerBall, which raised over $750,000 for the Sports Alliance League of Charities. We raised over $90,ooo from the silent auction alone.

Power players from almost every one of the Washington area's pro teams was in attendance, including Jason Campbell (Redskins QB), Ben Olsen, and Shawn Springs. It was a sports lovers dream!

The Redskins Cheerleaders were there, Trix daSilva (basketballer extraordinare!), and even little Nathan Corbett from "The Wire." After the dinner and program, there was an amazing array of desserts and games set up by some of the pro-teams. I didn't actually wear Sneakers, but even if I had, I don't think I could have outkicked this girl!Photos by Pat Ryan, hired by the Sports Alliance for the event.

The Racing Presidents!

My great friend, Carole Tremonti, is not in town from Boston that often, but the Nats may have to fly her in for games, because she's the best luck I've ever seen! Not only did we win the game last night, we TRAMPLED the Mets.

I'm sure I had more fun at this game than any other this year (yes, even the game I threw out the 1st pitch), because we got to meet the racing Presidents! I have a little crush on Teddy. I know, I'm always attracted to the nerdy ones... but there is just something about that smile! And when I told him that I had faith in him, and he was going to win a race before the Nats' last game at RFK, he gave me the biggest hug. (And then he fell and tripped Jefferson and Lincoln, allowing Washington to run away with yet another win...)

6 games left for the Nats at RFK. Run, Teddy, Run!

Miss America's Oustanding Teen Comes Home

I had a lot of confidence in Caitlin Brunell's chances at Miss America's Oustanding Teen when I judged her to win Miss Virginia's Oustanding Teen. She didn't let us down! Last Friday she returned to Northern Virginia for a Homecoming Celebration at the Sheridan National hotel. Crowned Queens from parts of Virginia, DC, and Maryland (old and new!) came to give a hug, a smile, and warmest congratulations.



Caitlin's father, Mark Brunell, also greeted guests and gave an inspirational speech about how pageantry can change the lives of young women and help their poise, grace, and confidence. Turns out Caitlin's mom is a "pageant girl," too!


I had the best time reconnecting with members of the Boards of the Miss Virginia and Miss Maryland pageants, seeing familiar faces, and beaming with pride for Caitlin's outstanding accomplishment.










Filed Under: Reasons to Love Italian Food

Or... Reasons that I'm going to be as fat as a Queen sized bed!

Michael Kosmides held his official welcoming party to Teatro Goldoni Thursday night. Although most of us were in attendance at the "soft opening" (girlfriend Colleen Morrow's birthday party), there were plenty of enticements to have us go back for seconds.

I don't know how he did it, but in the space of a magical 24 hours, Mike tranformed the interior of Teatro from a superior restaurant, to a superior restuarant with a super chic enhanced bar area and an over the top "private party" room in the back. Good to great happens fast!

And he instituted something I've seen only at Posh Supper Club - a membership card, in limited number - and I got one! Dining discounts and specials. And if I visit often enough (which I'm sure I will) a chance to return to Venice.

And - as if I hadn't sampled enough of Chef Fabrizio Aielli's culinary concoctions, I finally tasted the lobster rissoto, a Teatro Goldoni signature dish, that was every bit as scrumptious as described. Absolutely. Heavenly.

Sample Sale Threads and Italian Breads

The event was finally here... with a line to rival only that of the corrall at the Filene's Basement Wedding Dress Dash... the District Sample Sale! For the third year (my second attending and participating in the Haute Committee), the old Staples Warehouse in Georgetown held booth after booth of designer label delights. Most of our amazingly chic local boutiques in one place - and the clothing on sale!! I felt even better after my shopping spree knowing that a portion of the proceeds benefit Miriam's House.
It's true that the each year's increasing crowds make perusing the racks almost as uncomfortable as searching through the bins at the semi-annual Victoria's Secret Sale. But the great eats and fun beats kept you in a good mood, and the rush just made finding that perfect outfit (at a steal of a deal!) that much more worth it.
When I finally did have to give up and realize that the adorable purple sundress I had been eyeing was never going to magically transform into my size, I left it lonely on the rack and headed to meet friends at Piola for the restaurant's 2nd anniversary celebration. The night - Molto Bene!

Hoops for Hope



For nine years, The American League of Lobbyists and members of Congress have joined together in Hoops for Hope. Each is an exciting year of basketball and a time to make a worthwhile contribution to the local community. Hoops for Hope raises funds for Hill Help, Horton's Kids, and the Luke Tiahrt Foundation to provide eyeglasses, braces, and tutoring for DC Youth.

I was there for the first of two games with my good friend (and 3rd Runner Up at the National Sweetheart Pageant) Michelle Crosby. John Byrd, of MAPPS, invited us to attend, so I chose to cheer for the Lobbyists, while Michelle rooted for the MoCs. This first game (actually played by Congressional staffers vs. Lobbyists) was handily won by the Congressional staffers. Sorry, John - you played well!
The second game would be played by Members of Congress against Lobbyists. I didn't get to stay to watch, but those Reps. sure did look tough!

This event expects to raise over $250,000! I was proud to be a part of the night and cheer for those making a difference for our kids.

Redskins Take it in Overtime!



It was a nailbiter for sure! Redskins scored first on a fieldgoal, then were behind or tied for the rest of the game. But the Greater Washington Sports Alliance - and those of our League of Charities that were able to join us in our donated suite - kept the faith until a sudden death overtime went our way.

Shaun Suisham's successful overtime field goal clinched the win for the Redskins and started the season off right for the District team and fans.

In spite of the win, however, we all have to keep our fingers crossed and keep Jon Jansen in our thoughts after the fractured dislocation of his right ankle in the first half.

KM's Longest Day Ever




I knew it was going to be a long (and late) one. Even so, I got up before most of the social set was stirring and prepared to start my Saturday with a bridal shower. The lucky lady wasn't just a friend, although she is a great one - she's the one who handed off her Miss DC crown to me and is about to start the next phase of her life as Mrs. John Patterson (Shannon Schambeau).


Teri Galvez graciously opened her home to us for a ladies luncheon and lingerie shower for Shannon. For hours we nibbled and laughed, then oohed and aahed over some "treats" John won't get to see until the honeymoon!

By the time I caught up with those who were also attending the Smithsonian Young Benefactor's Polo Cup on the National Mall, I had unfortunately missed most of the chukkers, but thankfully also the majority of the unbearably hot day! So proud of all of my friends who had the guts to get out there (on horses!) and play to entertain us - and raise money for the Smithsonian Institutions. It was a supremely fabulous event (wonderful food, outstanding participants, and an amazing venue - the National Mall) but also historic, as this is the last event here before construction begins on the new MLK Jr. Memorial.

(I stole the above picture from Pamela's blog - thank you, Pam!)

The afterparty was in the gardens of the beautiful Mandarin Oriental hotel. As the sun set, we cooled with cocktails and light conversation preparing for... the rest of the evening! It was only 8:00!

A lively group headed to dinner at Teatro Goldoni (from here on I'm shortening to.. "Teatro") - it's the hot new spot since we love both the unbelievably tasty dishes and new owner Michael Kosmides. And then off to Play to celebrate the birthday of Carolina Furukrona, Director of the Smithsonian Young Benefactors. Congrats, Carolina - on blowing out all of your candles, of course, but also on a wildly successful Polo event.

I hit the sheets hard... Sunday would be another long day, full of Redskins football!

SneakerBall VIP Party


Thursday night the biggest donors of the Greater Washington Sports Alliance came together at the Dodge Mansion for a VIP Reception in anticipation of the 4th Annual SneakerBall on the 18th. I heard it was the best VIP reception in the event's history (congrats, Jeana)! Since this will be my first SneakerBall, and thus my first VIP party, I can't help but agree.

I couldn't begin to list those worth mentioning at the event. Too many! (In the photo above are Bill Hanbury of the Washington Convention and Tourism Corporation, and Jeanne Theisman, a journalist.)

The unbelievable food was done by Teatro Goldoni, an amazing restaurant recently under the new ownership of good friend Michael Kosmides. The bar featured Christiania - which is always wonderful.

As the evening winded down, so did we all - into the first level bar and pool rooms to enjoy some final moments enjoying sports (there was a football game on, of course!) and each others' support for the GWSA and the upcoming SneakerBall!

Wear RFK!


Reading through the RedEnvelope catalog this morning (I do way too much internet shopping!) I saw what just may be the best, or worst gift for a male sports fan. I haven't decided if I like it - but it's definitely an interesting idea.

RedEnvelope is selling Ballpark Cufflinks - pieces of verious stadiums around the country that have been made into men's jewelry. Yes, you can buy wooden pieces of RFK Stadium to adorn your french cuffs for under $200!

According to RedEnvelope,

"these aren't just cuff links—they're a piece of baseball history. Crafted
of salvaged wooden seats from America's most famous and beloved stadiums, these cuff links are one of a kind. Coated in the original paint of the stadium seat
colors, each wooden cuff link boasts a deep patina collected from decades of
home openers, double-headers and grand slam ovations."


Pretty cool. But... why should Fenway cost more??

DC Takes 3rd-Runner Up at National Sweetheart Pageant

Apparently the pageant world is confusing to those on the outside. I say "apparently" because I'm constantly amazed by how many people ask me the difference between Miss America and Miss USA. Example: Miss DC goes to Miss America, Miss DC USA goes to Miss USA. Doesn't seem that confusing to me. Maybe I'm a genious!

Anyway, to further confuse matters, the 1st Runners Up (or another runner-up if the 1st chooses not to participate) at the Miss America state pageants are invited to compete at the National Sweetheart Pageant in Hoopeston, Illinois.

Our very own District of Columbia representative, Michelle Crosby, not only came in 3rd Runner Up at Miss National Sweetheart, she won the Interview preliminary! Hugest of congratulations to Michelle for such an outstanding performance. You made us all proud!


Venice


Like everyone else, I deserted the District over Labor Day weekend. Georgia wasn't on my mind. I didn't do Dewey. I really just wanted to ride in a gondola before the city fell into the water.

I still maintain that Venice is like Vegas - a place you can spend a great few days, and then you've had enough. I did get my fill, and I loved every minute of it!
We were your normal tourists. Toured St. Marc's cathedral, bought masks reminiscent of Teatro Goldoni, shopped for Italian leather/glass baubles/designer couture, and ate so much pizza and pasta we needed to walk around as much as we did!



But the best parts we happened upon...

Each year on the first Saturday in September, an annual celebration and regatta takes place. We joined the masses cheering for our favorite team. (I fell in love with the yellow team, but I still have no idea how they placed. I think they won, but the race seemed to be rowed in circles, so I have no way to be sure.)


And we couldn't have been luckier to fall into the Venice Film Festival, the oldest film festival, dating prior even to Cannes. The film of choice was "Jesse James" starring Casey Affleck and Brad Pitt. When we couldn't get tickets, we choose, instead, to take advantage of the Cipriani's Restaurant on a neighboring island. For a while the only patrons of the tiny bar, it filled very quickly! Upon closer inspection, the Angelina Jolie look-alike immediately behind me turned out to actually be Angelina, with Brad Pitt to my left. Not only did we have the great fortune to run into Richard Gere, Charlize Theron, and others during our Venice vacation, Bill also profited when Warner Brothers bought him a scotch! (Sorry, no pictures. That would have shown that we didn't belong... so you'll just have to believe me!)

And yes, at the end of our four days, I did finally get my gondola ride.










Team Spirit


I've just learned about an inspiring program of the Greater Washington Sports Alliance and am thrilled to be able to support it so strongly.


Have you ever wondered about potential Olympians from the area? How does the city help them? How can we find out about them and provide our own encouragement... and perhaps funding to assist them in their efforts?


We have TEAM SPIRIT - a Sports Alliance program that helps these athletes to bring their connections and the resources of the city together. The newest member of Team Spirit, Kristen Allan. I've never met a female Judoka... and especially not one so powerful and beautiful at the same time!

We got together last week with outstanding photographer, Jaime Windon, to take some shots for GWSA publicity pieces. I'm so impressed with her confidence, her humor, her power, and of course - her natural beauty!

I'm so thrilled to help her go for Olympic Gold!!
K Street Kate - Voted "Best Local Online Magazine" by Metromix!