Sunday, January 18, 2004

Seen: Greater Cincinnati's benefits and bashes

Cincinnati Parks Foundation

[IMAGE] Event co-chair Susan Anthony (left), Cincinnati Parks Foundation President Gus Long and his wife, Lori Long, enjoy a moment during the cocktail hour.
(Philip Groshong photos)
The Thompson Shelterhouse of the Cincinnati Playhouse in the Park was a sellout.

A crowd of 225 was on hand for the benefit performance of Always...Patsy Cline, a musical tribute to the life of one of America's best-loved performers.

Presented by Margaret and A.G. Lafley and US Bank, the benefit included cocktails and hors d'oeuvres, followed by the performance. An after-party featured desserts and coffees.

All of the evening's food was donated by some of the city's top caterers, among them Jeff Thomas, A Taste of Class, Elegant Fare, Village Pantry, Bensons, Chef's Choice, Montgomery Inn and Mix It Up.

The evening raised $27,000 for the Cincinnati Parks Foundation.

The event was chaired by Judy Dalambakis, Lynda Thomas and Susan Anthony.

Spotted in the crowd were Cincinnati Parks Director Willie Carden Jr., Playhouse in the Park Producing Artistic Director Ed Stern and Executive Director Buzz Ward, Anne and Allen Zaring, Priscilla and Les Ungers and Mary and Jon Gimpel.

Benefit concert: Autism Society

[IMAGE] Dave Storm (left), event chairman, jams with Preston Price, Tom Jansing and Randy Campbell.
Dave Storm, a member of local band Screaming Mimes, recently combined his musical talents with his passion as a father to put together a smashing event.

Storm's son has Asperger syndrome, considered a form of autism. Storm wanted to do something to raise awareness of and money for autism research, so he organized a benefit concert at the York Street Cafe in Newport.

With sponsorship from WNKU, the event brought together some of the area's top bands with former members of the Talking Heads, who, oddly enough, were initially known as the Autistics.

Former Talking Heads singer and guitarist David Byrne signed prints. Former drummer Chris Frantz and bass player Tina Weymouth signed CDs, DVDs and posters.

These items, along with many donated by Phil's Records, were raffled throughout the evening.

Local bands donating their talent included Swarthy Band, Colonel, Odd Man Out, Similar Nature, I Invented It!, Whitney Barricklow Band, Jeff Roberson, Wojo, Monteclaire, And Andy, Clabbergirl, Super 77 and, of course, Storm's Screaming Mimes.

York Street Cafe club manager Justin Lynch rated the evening "Amazing ... one of the busiest nights ever."

Some of the crowd of 400 came from as far as St. Louis and Knoxville.

Because of room capacity limitations, many had to stand in line and wait their turn to hear the performances and meet the former Talking Heads members.

The $5 cover change and raffles generated about $2,500 for the Autism Society.

Catching up: Other fund-raising events

Cancer Family Care

For Cancer Family Care's 24th annual Wine Tasting, at the Manor House in Mason, more than 400 guests paid $125-$150 each to sample wines from around the world.

A gourmet, three-course dinner following the tasting featured wines chosen to complement each course.

The evening, chaired by Kathee Van Kirk, raised $90,000 to help Cancer Family Care continue helping families cope with the emotional effects of cancer or the death of a loved one.

Sponsor: Cincinnati Wine Festival. Associate sponsor: Western & Southern Financial Group.

Welcome House

Five Seasons Country Club in Crestview was site for this year's "Heart for the Homeless," a benefit for Welcome House. More than 250 guests enjoyed the evening featuring live and silent auctions. More than 300 items, including sports packages and local art, helped raise $33,000. The funds will benefit the Welcome House's continued efforts in providing services for the poor and homeless in Northern Kentucky.

Sally Davidson chaired the event.

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Greater Cincinnati benefits and bashes
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