Magic wands and rings dangled from the ceiling along with stars, lights, and brightly colored fabrics at “A Night to Remember” at SeaGate Centre, featuring Magic Castle Magician of the Year Jeff McBride. Rabbits were everywhere — the cuddly kind were sold as chances while mini garden-sculpture rabbits scattered on the tables, peeking from beneath floral centerpieces. Hugs the Hippo — the mascot of Mercy Children's Hospital — in the form of a child's rocker made by George Baibak sparked a bidding war at the silent auction. And the $5,000 reverse raffle drew attention too.
SLEIGHT OF HAND: Magic Castle Magician of the Year Jeff McBride helps make St. Vincent Medical Center's benefit a 'Night to Remember,' enchanting the appreciative audience with amazing feats of legerdemain.
The event was down in numbers this year but it still came through with flying colors — especially when Al Blackburn of Fifth Third Bank presented a check for $50,000. Proceeds from the event, sponsored by St. Vincent Mercy Medical Center Auxiliary and Foundation, support the establishment of a 24-hour Pediatric Emergency Center at the center's Mercy Children's Hospital.
Cocktails and dinner out of the way — Abracadabra! — it was show time: With the slightest of hand, guests escaped from reality. Fog filled the stage, and a star-lit curtain glittered in the background as the master of illusion appeared in exotic costume — far from the ordinary top hat and tie. The was fit for Las Vegas, where he is noted as an innovator in contemporary magic. Several guests were invited to be part of the act but when the young Jake Bruner, son of Cynthia and Jeff Bruner, took to the stage he practically stole the show! For his great performance he was presented with a magic wand of his own.
BENEFIT: Tom Merritt, Debbie Merritt, Lynne Mezinko, and Vince Mezinko had a 'Night to Rember' at the hospital event.
Spotted were several Grey nuns, along with Debbie and Terry Paul, Tammy and Jeff Fretti, Marcy Kaptur and John Devany, Sarah McHugh and Dave Hart, Jim and Ginger Gravell, Dennis and Sheila Manion, Barb and Mike Berebitsky, Ed and Linda Reiter, Beverly and Gary McBride, Ruth Lewandowski, Rosemary Quinn, Gerald and Marcene Marsa, Karen Merrels and Tom Criqui, Darlene and Joe Minnick, and Tom and Debbie Merritt who were hosts of the kick-off party last month.
A few select guests — who were also at a VIP pre-event party — attended a “Meet 'n' Greet” with Mr. McBride at which he gave autographs and posed with guests for photographs.
Chairmen of the evening were St. Vincent Mercy Medical Center Foundation president Bud Beekman, and auxiliary president Lynne Mezinko.
THE BASH: Amanda and Donald Dietrich look like they're getting pretty chummy with film icon James Dean.
Parties in the name of charity continued in spite of the terrorist attacks and threats. They were a statement that life continues and a nice distraction, if only for a few hours, from the worry.
A night at the Oscars was Friday at The Bash 2001 to benefit COSI. It was the kick off to the opening of “Lights! Camera! COSI!: Making Movie Magic Come True” exhibit that opened that day. Paparazzi flashed cameras as guests strolled the red carpet amid life-sized movie star cut-outs.
Scrumptious edibles sated appe|tites and the KGB and Disco Explosion bands helped burn calories.
AT THE BISTRO: Tony Falzone, Susie Nowak, and The Rev. Michael Billian take a break from wine tasting at the party.
Schmoozers included Steve and Amy Dunavent, Gene Wos, Terri and Steve Braun, Tom and Betsy Brady, Mike and Pam Hill, Brent and Pam Cousino, By and Laura West, Terie Cook, Pat Francis, Don and Jenny Staggs of Middletown, and Lillian and Michael Walsh. Chairmen were Molly Long, Kathy Lathrop, and Amy Dunavant.
FASHION: Karen Uebelhart and Sue Lovette are in style to benefit the Ability Center.
A select group — those who paid a bit more — took a Private Reserve Wine Tasting River Cruise, complete with linen-covered tables, then joined the rest of the crowd after the sun set. Seen were Jeannie Hylant, Tom McHugh, Debbie Lewis, Joe Schaller, and Ken and Linda White.
included boutique shopping, a tasty lunch, and raffle prizes. Sue Lovette and Karen Uebelhart were co-chair-women. Seen in the well-dressed
crowd were auxiliary president Joyce Stenberg and the center's executive director, Tim Harrington, who commented that there are many heroes from the terrorist tragedy, but “There are heroes in this room too!"
Barbara Hendel is The Blade's society editor. E-mail her at email@example.com.
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