Bryce Harlow: People to Know

As a Bryce Harlow Foundation Scholar alum, I like to continue to take advantage of the opportunities the Foundation affords its members.

Yesterday Jennifer Duffy and David Washington of the Cook Political Report spoke at a luncheon series. The Cook Report is known for analytic views of political candidacies and has been called the "Bible of the political community" by Bob Schieffer.

I was surprised to hear Jennifer and David say they thought the Presidential election could be won or lost this year in... Colorado.

But, from what we've seen, there are more surprises to come!

Books, Balls & Birthdays

Saturday was spent on the National Mall, volunteering for the National Book Festival as I have for the past four years. My favorite place to be is in the Pavilion of States, where each state sends a representative (usually a librarian) to explain about literacy and reading initiatives in their state. We give the kids - or fun adults - a map of the U.S. and when they have every state stamped, the JLW gives them a prize. The erasers this year were a big hit!

But although the Book Festival made for a long day (I actually fell asleep on the metro on the ride home!!) - it wasn't quite over for me.

Saturday night I got gussied up for the Canary Foundation's Black Tie Casino Night and Masquerade Ball, which (after some beneficiary changes...) raised money for the Febretto Children's Foundation. No one would tell me who won the poker tourney, although my friend John Galligan was proud to tell me he claimed 2nd place. No prize for 2nd unfortunately :( Winner took home $5,000.
After removing our masks and revealing our identities, David Kassir, Sanaz Noorbakhsh, Rodrigo Garcia and I headed to L2 to wish a very Happy Birthday to Jessica Elledge.

Fashion Fights Poverty on the Runway

Friday night at the St. Regis Hotel, five designers and some twenty-odd models featured socially responsible fashion on the runway to benefit empoverished communities. It was Fashion Fights Poverty - and it was awesome! I'm also featured in the FFP 2008 Look Book, but always enjoy entertaining on the runway so much more!

Thanks to photographer Pat Ryan who sent me some pics after the show. At left, I model for Mae, at right, for Kayce.

I convinced Matt Landsburg of Eric Finn to add some females to his line-up. Wouldn't it be hot if we wore men's dress shirts and heels?! YES! We did. And it was a hit!

Only two things about the night weren't incredible. One - the crazy teased hair looks great on the runway, but is a mess to deal with afterward. You can't tame it enough to head straight to the afterparty - and it may take four washings to get all of the hairspray and knots out!... Two - the dang "reality show" peeps are getting on my last nerves. Perhaps more on that later...

Spotted in the audience from my vantage point on the runway: Paul Wharton, Victoria Michael, Pamela Sorensen, Laura Carlson, and Rebecca Heslin.

Fashion Fights Poverty Tonight

This evening I'll be modeling pieces from Kayce, Mae, and maybe even Eric Finn (which will be super HOT!!) as I strut the runway at the St. Regis hotel for Fashion Fights Poverty.

It's a sold out event, so if you missed out on tickets, you'll have to check back for details on the night, the styles, and DC's commitment to the cause.

Wish me luck!

That Nats Commercial

My infamous Nats commercial.

Everyone saw it before me. Even my co-workers.

For the record... there isn't a bad seat in the house, but the President's Club is the coolest.

Help a Sore Servicemember

Every day our servicemembers around the globe battle harsh temperatures that result in uncomfortable sunburn, dry skin, and bites - in addition to the dangers of their work! They do enough for us. We should do every little thing we can for them. And - I just found out about Combat-Ready Balm.

'Big sis' Victoria passed along information and samples of Combat-Ready Balm to me... just before I attended last weekend's USO Casino Night. Now I know that cases of Combat-Ready Balm (think ChapStick on steroids) have been donated over the past three years to servicemembers overseas.

At, find out how $12.50 can support troop sanity.

*I'm not being paid and I've never used the product myself, but I hear the troops are asking for it. So I've already made my donation.

Meeting Nanette

Nanette Lepore opened a beautiful boutique in Chevy Chase Tuesday night with a reception, nay - party - to rival the end of DC's own Fashion Week, sponsored by Capitol File. I told Barbara Martin, who was instrumental in organizing the fete and who is pictured below with Nanette and Kristin McMahon, that it was the best, and most energetic, boutique opening I have been to in Washington!

I arrived just a touch late and the band was already swinging - dancers on one side of the sales floor and drink lines on the other. Of course, most of the clothes were put away so the revelry wouldn't ruin the off-the-rack... but I have already picked some choice selections from those that still lined the walls. One thing I think Nanette is best at is work to evening wear. An advantage in this town of daily weekday receptions!

Just as with the Fashion Washington launch earlier this month, the event was a veritable Who's Who of style in Washington. I was snapped with local Project Beltway fashion blogger Rachel Cothran, above, and a fashion diva whose clothing and accessories I always covet, Annie Van Meter, at left. Cindy Jones and Mary Amons had just jetted out when I made my late appearance... but I was in time for a bit of boutique talk with Lana Orloff and Liberty Jones (check back for her event for Neiman Marcus coming soon!).

Nanette's brilliant boutique is located at 5449 Wisconsin Ave. in Chevy Chase.

From Poetry to Paint...

I fit in at the Home Depot last night after the poetry readings... I was wearing my orange shoes!

National Endowment for the Arts Poetry

Monday we stepped away from the cocktails (although there was a wonderful America's Promise event at Union Station) and focused on culture at the National Endowment for the Arts Rise Up and Hear: An Evening of Poetry Honoring Abraham Lincoln's Legacy.

In addition to several other other readers and important speakers, special guests Joan Allen and Sam Waterston gave readings of some of Lincoln's best speeches and favorite literary works.

Congratulations to Ellen Grantham on a successfully planned evening and a night of poetic celebration.

T. Boone Pickens at the Press Club

Whether you think it's ingenious or isolationist, you can read more about his plan for U.S. energy independence at
T. Boone Pickens was at the National Press Club Monday afternoon to give a very entertaining luncheon speech about his passion for the American energy independence and explain why he would pledge some of his personal fortune to educate the public of the need for alternative energy sources.

"After all I paid for 'em, it would be heartbreaking to ask for a show of hands and only see half of 'em raised," he said of his personally funded television ad spots.

As much as I enjoyed hearing T. Boone speak, it was just as fascinating to eavesdrop on the musings around the room. I'm looking forward to reading my signed copy of the "The First Billion is the Hardest" in hopes that his writings will be as humorous, yet as thought-provoking as his speech.
Proceeds from his efforts on tour and book sales at the luncheon were contributed to Fisher House and Brooke Army Medical.

America's Cup of Polo

Deja vu with the divots.

Two weeks after the Smithsonian Young Benefactors had their Polo Cup on the fields of the Mall, the America's Polo Cup recreated a gorgeously warm and sunny day at the same spot - this time complete with musical entertainment and Miss DC and Miss VA making an appearance before heading to California to film this year's Miss America reality show.

Tareq and Michaele Salahi have worked tirelessly to bring this event to the forefront of the ever-increasing number of prestigous polo events in the area. The Kick-Off event last Saturday on the Mall foreshadowed a match between the United States Polo team and the Roma Polo Club, who will face off in Italy next weekend!
I spotted members of the First Chukkers polo team, Sports Alliance President, Bob Sweeney and Chairman, Fernando Murias, and Discovery's Devon Taylor Parsons all decked out in their finest to cheer and jeer.
(Above left - me with Lara Driscoe and Anne Lee. At right, nightlife expert and Support Consultant, Andrea Van Dell, for LEX on Demand.)
After the day was choose your own adventure - 80's Bash at Skye Lounge, Laura Carlson's Absolut Washington at The Park, birthdays at the Rookery or L2, or the perpetual favorite - Cafe Milano.

USO Casino Night

Friday night I attended the annual USO of Metro Washington Casino Night to raise funds for USO Metro services and show my appreciation for the men and women who make sacrifices for my freedom and safety. Every year it is a truly great event!

Redskin great John Riggins hosted the evening - and was a fine auctioneer! - but the pageant gals stole the show. Miss America, Kirsten Haglund and Miss Virginia 2008, Tara Wheeler were wonderful with all of the guests, of course. And it was good to see my good friend Rhett Butler teaching everyone at the Sheraton National how to play poker... as good as he did in the World Series of Poker tournament when he took 5th!

Andy Baldwin was, as always, a hit with everyone - especially the ladies. I asked him who he was taking in advance... because you can't just take anyone when you were "The Bachelor," you know! The smart boy socialized solo :)

Prior to the evening, the celebrity guests visited Walter Reed to visit with those servicemen and women who would be unable to attend the event held in their honor.

Profiled on Glamazon Diaries

Makeda's fashion and glamour site, Glamazon Diaries, is a go-to resource for socialites with style. She was recently kind enough to profile me for her new 'Chic in the City' feature.

Love it! Thanks, Makeda!

Understanding the Beauty Queen Politician

I guess I'm becoming somewhat of the go-to expert on Beauty Queen Politicians... cited in The Hill this week.

Happy Birthday, Amanda!

A gaggle of women draws attention... so a group of us celebrating Amanda Little's birthday at the Nats vs. Mets game last night certainly put us in the spotlight. (THANKS VICTORIA MICHAEL!!) We sang Take Me Out to the Ballgame on the big screen, danced to Twist and Shout, and did surprisingly well at the sports trivia questions! Trivia knowledge didn't bring the team a win, but it was a great start to the night...

which led us to the new Gin & Tonic in Glover Park where the dancing continued in a big open space that reminds me of everyone's favorite basement bars, except for the high ceilings. From now on, I'm nicknaming the place "Pinball" because I feel like I played human pinball all night - bouncing to avoid one dancing couple or stumbling 'crazy'.
The best thing about Pinball/G&T is the music - a cool mix of hip-hop and classic rock and roll. We got the DJ to play a birthday tune for Amanda while we lit the candles on her Georgetown Cupcakes. The sugary sweet smell masked the amonia odor that seems to be the marque of the (once Grog & Tankard) Gin & Tonic.
Or maybe that stench is the sweet smell of success, because I predict this dive bar is going to be the newest big hit for the twentysomething scene.

Sneakerball V

My first Sneakerball (last year) was spent working the event, so it was fun to go back and enjoy.

This annual event brings together Washington area businessmen, charitable organizations and sports stars for a night of fundraising for the Greater Washington Sports Alliance charities and to celebrate the accomplishments of some chosen sports greats into the Hall of Champions. This year's honorees: Adrian Dantley, Brig Owens, and Brian Mitchell. Alex Ovechkin was also named Capital One's "DC Sportsman of the Year."

This year's line-up was similar to Sneakerball IV. Team mascots roamed the cocktail reception (thanks to Andrew Lang for snapping me with the Kastles tennis ball!), athletes from several of the area's major teams mixed and mingled, and everyone wanted their picture taken with a Redskin Cheerleader. I was sad to see that DC United's inflatable soccer kick didn't make it back this year, but was happy with the addition of Lindsay Czarniak to complement Steve Buckhantz's emceeing.

Thanks to Gary Clark for allowing me to accompany him. That's him (above) being presented on stage at the beginning of the evening.

After all of the accolades and athletic honors, we gathered again for some gladhanding and gawking. At left, my new friend (two events together in two nights... he was at the FW Launch Monday night as well!) Brooks Laich of the Capitals, Joe Robert and Tiffany Carter.

The official afterparty may have been at Indebleu... but we jetsetted off to Fly.

FW Launch

Last night was one of the most anticipated events of the season - the FW (Fashion Washington Launch) held at the Georgetown home of Ben Bradlee and Sally Quinn. An amazing party tent turned the yard into an almost Bryant Park-like afterparty, and DC's most stylish came to celebrate high fashion's introduction to the city.

FW is a newspaper sized glossy publication that will focus on luxury fashion... and how Washingtonians can wear it. Those at the fete got a preview of the first issue, which everyone else will be able to see Wednesday. Shoots for these publications will be at the most interesting places in Washington - the first was at the AFI Silver Theater and Cultural Center in Silver Spring.

I'm sure one of the most popular sections of the monthly publication will be "Scene Stealers," where FW showcases who's wearing what to events around town. Michelle Fenty is sure to be featured there often. She looked stunning last night as she accepted an award for being FW's 1st most fashionable.

Above I pose in front of the step-and-repeat with Pamela Sorensen, Anne Lee, and Tara de Nicolas. At left, I am with style guru and eyebrow expert Erwin Gomex (he has his own star on the Hollywood walk of fame!). And below, I'm with FFP Producer and Stylist (and Svelte-TV host) Elaine Mensah.

*In true DC style, most party-goers wore some fashionable variation of black. Since I expected that most would attempt to stand out at this fashion fete and wear bolder choices, I thought I would be going against the norm. Should have done like Elaine... but at least I love my dress. I'm wearing Reiss.

Suit Up

Don't forget...
We can help put others on the right track to a Path to Employment. See you there!

Skins Win!!

Thanks to Gary Clark for allowing me to accompany him to the Redskins game Sunday against the Saints. Also much appreciated is the hospitality of those in the Dominion Power suite - it was a great afternoon of fun and new friendships - because, of course, the best games end with a WIN!

Madisons Celebrate 5 Years

Saturday night, the Madisons feted our 5 year anniversary - classy charitable chics together for 5 years!! The big event was celebrated at L2...

BvB Draft Party

During Saturday afternoon's UGA football game (I'm a Georgia Girl)... the Blondes vs. Brunettes held their annual draft party to introduce the players of each team for the charity game which will raise money for Alzheimer's.

For many of us, it was our first introduction to the new Darlington House in Dupont, and they made us very welcome! The lower bar is a great place to watch a game and relax with friends.

The announcement of the teams is always exciting and brings a great crowd. At left, me and Gina Jun, a member of the Brunettes. I will be serving as the Brunettes "Water Girl" this year :) Check the event website soon for an updated team roster and to purchase tickets for the game!

Hooked on Books

It was easy to jump out of bed early on Saturday morning - I was going to the Edgewood Terrace community (a success of the Community Preservation and Development Corporation) to support Hooked on Books - FirstBook and SunTrust Bank's event to encourage youth literacy. At the end of the day of reading, FirstBook gave each person in attendance their very own new book!

At left is La Var Arrington speaking to a room full of kids about why reading is important to him, and how literacy helps everyone to succeed. "The more you know, the more you grow," he told them.

Community leaders from around the city (and me!) read to groups of youth, engaged them in literacy activities, and told personal stories about our love of reading and how we got Hooked on Books.

Politics from Pageantry

Click the title above to read my editorial on how pageantry prepares women for political careers published in the Loudoun Independent on September 10, 2008.

L2 Last Night

Anne Lee, Kheira Benkreira and Ellen Granthem out with me at L2 last night.
Thanks to Rodrigo for taking care of us, as always.

Sports Rally on the Rooftop

Last night, my former employers, the Greater Washington Sports Alliance held a VIP reception for their annual Sneakerball Gala to toast their new inductees into the Sneakerball Hall of Champions. Eventually, I think there is actually supposed to be a Hall of Champions... but in the meantime, they're collecting fine city sports specimens.

This year - Brian Mitchell, Brig Owens and Adrian Dantley are set to be honored at the Gala (next Tuesday at the National Building Museum).

A threat of rain had us holding our breath for the rooftop party, as did the fear of falling in the Donovan House's rooftop pool! But the night was clear and cool. The space was filled with sports enthusiasts, businessmen, and one conspicous Teddy.

Looking forward to Tuesday when everyone will be all dressed up - and wearing sneakers!!

Posting from the Patio

It's most appropriate when there is a slight chill in the air for an end of season patio party. At first I lamented leaving the pashmina, but ended up basking in the warmth and comfort of summer friends.

The patio space at Hudson was a scene in itself... on one side, those of us who wanted to mix, mingle and meet. On the other, the ubiquitous "reality show" cameras that we can't seem to avoid. Ugh.

Left - me and photog Pat Ryan who finally agreed to be in a picture with me instead of on the other side of the lens. Right - me and Morgan Ortagus with Dan Castle and a new friend.

The night's wanderings took us also to Teatro (now re-opened after some building renovations) and Tattoo where we supported Gina Jun's efforts to raise money for Alzheimer's and Blondes vs. Brunettes.

Noche de Gala - Afterparty at Gazuza

The Afterparty of the National Hispanic Foundation of the Arts Gala was held last night at Gazuza, in Dupont.

Many interesting (from out of town) celebrities were purportedly in attendance, though none were spotted. I was particularly looking forward to reconnecting with Mario Lopez, of Saved by the Bell and Dancing with the Stars fame, who hosted the Miss America pageant my year.

District Fashion Finds

Tuesday night was the bi-annual District Sample Sale at the Galleria @ Lafayette Center. Twenty-two area boutiques participated in the sale, purging their inventories at seriously slashed rates to make room for new Fall merchandise. Local lady turned glamour goddess covergirl, Hilary Rhoda, served as Honorary Chair.

Those that were able to secure coveted VIP tickets enjoyed an entire hour of less frenzied shopping in advance of the masses that were granted entrance later in the evening. The line stretched down the block and then some with anxious sample salers and the occasional passerby wondering how they could get in on the sensational shopping. (Hint! Hint! Buy tickets early for May!!)

I don't know how I resisted making a single purchase - but I couldn't resist a Georgetown Cupcake (and it seems neither could Liberty Jones of Apres Peau and a Sample Sale Founder.)
At left, DSS Founder Mary Amons, her daughter Meghan, and Hilary Rhoda celebrate the hard work that went into this sale to benefit the DC Rape Crisis Center.

Sunday Funday Poloday

The mini-monsoon that Hanna brought with her caused the 2nd Annual Young Benefactors of the Smithsonian Polo Cup to be postponed until Sunday afternoon. By some miracle, the grounds were dry enough Sunday for a safe polo match - and even Nacho Figueras was able to arrange his schedule to stay to play.

And we couldn't have asked for a more beautiful day!
With some shuffling of the schedule, play continued for all the matches. John Walsh hosted. Many of my more adventurous friends - and Chet Lott - played (and played well!) and the rest of us... enjoyed food and friends in the shaded tents.
(Above left - Anne and I on the polo field post match. Right - the afterparty garden party at the Mandarin Oriental.)

FFP Look Book Launch

How cool was it to walk into Tattoo and see a huge poster of ME on the wall?! Awesome.

Leading up to the big Fashion Fights Poverty runway show, several events have taken place around town to kick-off the fun and excitement. Last night's Look Book Launch introduced this year's designers and eco-fashions.

I hadn't seen the images from my shoot earlier this year, so I was excited for the Look Book release!

Unfortunately, though select images were displayed on screens around the bar, I haven't gotten my hands on a book yet. But I'm working on it!

(At right, me and new sinPR hire Kaitlin Jacobi.)

R.I.P. Gryphon Room

Tonight may well be your last chance for sweaty basement dancing and beer pong. Doubtful.

But I am sad to see the end of the era of the Gryphon Room. Those weekly irreverent e-mails always made me smile.

Fritz Brogan is moving on to join Mauricio Fraga-Rosenfeld (of Latin Concepts) in a new venture, Gin & Tonic, in Glover Park. It's taking the place of Grog & Tankard, so it's not a basement, but I have a feeling late night sweaty dancing may still be welcome.
Now just waiting on someone to open up a Jack & Ginger...

Cocktails & Cupcakes @ CTC

To benefit Innocents at Risk and to support Miss DC 2008, Kate Marie Grinold, I went to my old stomping ground, the City Tavern Club for Cocktails & Cupcakes... the start to a charity Wednesday (or a charity September!).

Kate Marie, at right, asked her guests to realize the importance of human trafficking and help to stop it. She has adopted human trafficking as her platform as she prepares for Miss America. But this party was also a send-off. KMG leaves soon for the filming of the now annual Miss America contestants reality show. Ah... memories!

(Left - Anne Lee, Andy Baldwin, and me. Andy wanted me to make sure to tell everyone that he's bartending at The Bachelor Party (go figure!) Thursday night at the Rookery to raise $$ for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society.)

Also last night - Heather Guay and friends hosted a Happy Hour benefit at the Rookery to raise funds for Capitol Hospice. September's here - get out those charity checkbooks!

Sample Sale and Salsa

Last night was the final planning meeting for DSS... and we are down to last call for District Sample Sale tickets. Only a few VIP and Benefactress tickets remain - and that gift bag is already valued at over $400!! I promise. You don't want to miss this!

Also last night, we celebrated the birthday (and going away) of Ashley Taylor. Ashley and close friends met at Los Cuates - so new they haven't even taken the time to remove the building's Red Ginger signage - for a Mexican meal before heading to the Rookery for a more crowded celebration. In addition to feting another year of beauty and life, last night was a Bon Voyage (of sorts) as Ashley is headed to Italy for courses in gemology. Enjoy and good luck!
(Thanks to Pamela for documenting the evening so I could borrow some pictures. Ashley celebrates in a sombrero and yellow. At right, me and Ray Regan.)
In other news... I have it on good authority (from the mouth of Katherine Kennedy herself!) that filming started yesterday on "Blonde Charity Mafia." Won't be too much longer before you can watch KK, her adorable new pup, and some of our favorite Washington hot spots on the boob tube :)

Suited for Change

This one is important. I work for the Department of Employment Services, and all partners who help residents with employment training and skills development deserve our support! Thanks to Marlene Hall for sending this to me:

**Founded in 1992, Suited for Change provides professional clothing and ongoing career and life skills education to low-income women to increase their employment and job retention potential and to contribute to their economic independence. Our services are available at no charge and by referral only to low-income women who have completed job readiness programs and are seeking employment. Suited for Change is a founding member of The Women's Alliance, a national organization of independent community-based "sister organizations" who provide professional attire, career skills training and related services to low-income women.

We are having an event in Washington, DC!

When: Sept 23, 6:30pm
Where: Irvine Contemporary Art (1412 14th St NW)
Who: Barbara Merola is chairing!

Tickets should be bought by Sept 19th... check out to find out how to purchase.

Thank you to all K Street Kate readers who value the opportunity to "teach a man to fish" :)

Happy Labor Day!

Everyone is always shocked when I tell them I haven't ever been to DELMARVA (Delaware, Maryland, Virginia) beaches... Dewey, Bethany, Ocean City. So I took the last long weekend of the summer to celebrate Labor Day and head out with hundreds of my DC buddies to the beach!

I have to give hugest thanks to Lara Driscoe for being my weekend tourguide and wingwoman. We had a blast whether relaxing on the beach or chasing fun at the Dewey dive bars.

(Also pictured... twins Megan and Shannon Delaney.) I hope you enjoyed your weekend and rested up... September is spectacular in the District!

K Street Kate - Voted "Best Local Online Magazine" by Metromix!