Urban Jungle
The Brandenburg Gate stands behind a temporary exhibit of a 180-degree panorama of the Gate and its environs in June, 1945. The exhibit marks the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the end of war. 10:30 AM. Photo: JH.

Letter from Berlin -

Dear DPC:

The room at Hotel Adlon

Arrived in Berlin at around 9:00 AM. Bussed it over to Hotel Adlon Kempinski (Unter den Linden 77) where we just checked in (it's 10:30 AM). As you can see from the pic, a beautifully appointed, modern hotel. Going to grab some breakfast, learn a little German, and start walking the city. As you know, I'm here with the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra on a 5-day tour to Berlin to celebrate 40 years of diplomacy between Israel and Germany. The journey officially begins tomorrow and our itinerary for tomorrow is as follows:

• Depart for Oranienburgerstrasse Synagogue (aka the New Synagogue), once the largest synagogue in Europe.

• Walk to Grosse Hamburgerstrasse with the old Jewish cemetery, where Mendelssohn's gravesite is located.

• Continue on to the renowned Pergamon Museum, on Museum Island.

• Late afternoon at leisure.

• 7:30 PM dinner at Capital Club.

Will keep you posted ...

-JH



Last Wednesday, a week, the Wildlife Conservation Society held its annual spring gala – “Safari!” at the Central Park Zoo. This is one of the last great charity benefit parties of the New York spring season and it brings out a big crowd of supporters.

Ann Unterberg and Allison Stern

Julian and Josie Robertson were the honorary event chairs. Katharina Otto-Bernstein and Nathan Bernstein, Allison and Leonard Stern, Ann and Andrew Tisch and Ann and Thomas Unterberg were the co-chairs. Between these five couples they are able to muster the troops to bring in more than a million dollars for the WCS which saves wildlife and wild lands through careful science, international conservation, education, and the management of the world’s largest system of urban wildlife parks led by the flagship The Bronx Zoo.

It used to be, for centuries, right up through my lifetime that zoos provided wonder and amusement to children of all ages and the occasional scientists. No more; today they are an ongoing reflection of the desperate (underlined) need to protect wildlife which is now very quickly rushing toward extinction in this encroaching post-industrial society. The Wildlife Conservation Society is the leader in this pursuit.

The Conga Line at Safari!

Mother and baby Rhino
More than 650 social leaders from New York gathered to celebrate this year’s South American themed black-tie event. The evening began with cocktails by the sea lion pool, followed by dinner under the stars with the penguins and polar bears and dancing to New York society’s number one DJ, Tom Finn.

Tiffany & Company was honored for their unwavering commitment to conservation efforts worldwide. Then just as the dinner hour was beginning to wind down, 9:00 PM, the Conservation Council, WCS’s Junior Committee, hosted its own After Party “An Evening at the Central Park Zoo” with several hundred of the younger set gathering for cocktails, buffet dining and dancing to raise funds for WCS’s local and global conservation efforts.
David Schiff and Daniel Thorne
Steve Sanderson, Mike Kowalski, and Dale Brooks
Allison Stern and Jamee Gregory
Brian Stewart and Stephanie Krieger

Jane Alexander and friend
Bill Jackie and Rosemarie Bravo
Edward and Susan Hayes

Hilary and Wilbur Ross

L. to r.: Karenna Gore Schiff and Drew Schiff; Mr. and Mrs. Dick Cheney; Slothing off.
Dr. Sherrell Aston and Muffie Potter Aston
Daniel Thorne (winning bidder for the naming of the baby rhino at $85,000)

Marcia Mishaan
Dayssi Olarte de Kanavos
On the dance floor

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It is migrating season and the social flock gathered at the Loeb Boathouse in Central Park for a glorious early morning walk to witness fine-feathered birds at their morning rituals. Songbirds, warblers, tanagers, swallows, sparrows, bluebirds, cardinals, and hundreds of species have made the long arduous flight thousands of miles nonstop for several days (through all kinds of weather conditions, terrains, open water and finally, manmade obstacles) from Central and South America to their northern nesting habitatst . With its abundant trees and gardens and lake, Central Park is not only a one-night stand for some birds, but many stay to nest. Pale Male is a great example.

Among the earliest risers at Audubon's second BirdWalk and Breakfast were Jessie Araskog, Gail Hilson, Mark Gilbertson, Mallory Kean, Marjorie Reed Gordon, Dana Hammond, the Wathne sisters, Somers Farkas, and Alexia Ryan.

A cardinal in Central Park
They cordially invited us to the BirdWalk but we couldn't quite make it. You wonder why? The NYSD goes online between midnight and two, depending on the night before, and so we're, one hopes, still in deep sleep when these intrepid birdwatching enthusiasts get out into the park. We know it's a beautiful time, chilly maybe, as it's been much of the mornings this past month. But it's lots of fun for the devoted (and the early to bed/early to risers).
Mallory Kean
Karen Cord and Jacqueline Togut

Bibi McGill

Lauren Watkins and Nancy Stratford
Jessie Araskog, Dana Hammond, and Somers Farkas
Polly Bruckman, Lisa McCarthy, and Mark Gilbertson
Marjorie Reed Gordon and Gail Hilson zooming in
Jan Hesbon and the Wathne sisters
Ann Grauso and Tom O'Handley
Bob Perciasepe
A solo birdwatcher
The birders birding
Jan Hesbon and Wayne Mones
The Wathne sisters
Jessie Araskog, Somers Farkas, and Marjorie Reed Gordon



May 26, 2005, Volume V, Number 92
Photographs by Patrick McMullan (WCS) & Cutty McGill (Audubon)

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© 2006 David Patrick Columbia & Jeffrey Hirsch/NewYorkSocialDiary.com