Monday, October 1, 2007

Feasts and Fetes

Mike Wallace and Barbara Saltzman
Gayfryd Steinberg and Louise Grunwald
Dr. Tara Cortes and Liz Smith
Two weeks ago Wednesday, Lighthouse International held its Henry A. Grunwald Award for Public Service Luncheon chaired by Louise Grunwald, named in honor of her late husband Henry A. Grunwald, who was the first recipient of the award. The Grunwalds’ longtime friend Liz Smith emceed, and another friend Ted Sorenson was keynote speaker. The honorees included Peter G. Peterson, Ellen Ratner and Jeffrey E. Mittman, a soldier partially blinded in the Iraqi War.

Mr. Peterson is Senior Chairman and Co-founder of The Blackstone Group. Ellen Ratner is Bureau Chief Talk Radio News Service, Political Editor, TALKERS Magazine, and Fox News Contributor; and Jeffrey E. Mittman is a soldier who was partially blinded in the Iraqi War. The Honorable R. James Nicholson, Secretary of Veterans Affairs introduced Sergeant Mittman. The Henry A. Grunwald Award for Public Service recognizes individuals who are committed to advancing public awareness of vision impairment and vision rehabilitation

Mr. Grunwald was the former US Ambassador to Austria and former Editor-in-Chief of Time Inc. He authored Twilight: Losing Sight, Gaining Insight, a groundbreaking personal account of his experience with the onset of vision loss due to macular degeneration.

Vice Chairmen and guests included more Grunwald friends: Felix and Liz Rohatyn, Henry Kissinger, Holly Peterson, Barbara Walters, Marie-Josee and Henry Kravis, Alice and Tom Tisch, Gayfryd  Steinberg, Mike Wallace, Amy Fine Collins, Mike Wallace, Mica Ertegun, Bruce Ratner.  

Founded in 1905, Lighthouse International is a leading non-profit organization dedicated to preserving vision and to providing critically needed health care services to help people of all ages overcome the challenges of vision loss. Through services, education, research and advocacy, the Lighthouse enables people with low vision and blindness to enjoy safe, independent and productive lives. For more information about vision loss, its causes and what you can do about it, contact Lighthouse International at 1-800-829-0500 or visit         
Peggy Noonan, Ted Sorensen, and Joan Ganz Cooney
The Honorable R. James Nicholson, Jeffrey E. Mittman, and Dr. Tara Cortes
Chris Meigher and Jamee Gregory
Henry Kissinger and Barbara Walters
Jane Poole Bendheim and Enid Nemy
Dr. Tara Cortes and Barbara Walters
Fernanda Niven and Mica Ertegun
Gayfryd Steinberg, Liz Smith, and Louise Grunwald
Joan Ganz Cooney and Holly Peterson
Anne Sitrick, Jonathan Wainwright, and Mariana Kaufman
Amy Cappellazzo, Holly Peterson, and Joe Armstong
Jay Paul and Mady Schuman
Pete Peterson and Ted Sorensen
Ellen Ratner and Ari Fleischer
Michelle Russell with Jonathan and Somers Farkas
Bruce Ratner, Michael Ratner, and Roger O. Goldman
Having their cake. I’m the only man invited to this annual Autumn luncheon. In years past there were a couple others. For some reason they were not present this year. About a hundred women. The guestlist reflects a wide variety of interests and personalities (and ages), although besides all being mutual friends and acquaintances through the hostesses, Jessie Araskog and Somers Farkas, most of these women know each other and seek out each other (at least socially) very often. In a world of six degrees of separation, I’d say this group is 1 or 2 degrees of separation. That is the nature of the focus of New York.

I could say I don’t know why I’m invited. I can be a bore especially if what I’m after is the material – the pictures and the atmosphere. I always accept because I see it as an opportunity, which I am grateful for, to mark it for whatever it’s worth to the mosaic of history and lore. I also accept because the food’s good. Let’s keep it in the here and now. This year it was held at Le Cirque and I wouldn’t turn down a meal at Le Cirque. The Branzino was excellent. Furthermore, it should be noted that the company’s good.

I don’t know what they were talking about at the tables because my hearing’s so bad I can barely hear whoever’s sitting next to me. I’m not sure what anybody’s talking about these days as the news grows more and more anxious.

It was also Jessie Araskog’s birthday and so everyone sang “Happy Birthday” and then the waiters brought out a cupcake with a candle on it. During the courses, I made it my business to photograph as many as possible, including a couple of women who were not pleased to having their pictures taken. Oh come, come girls, it’s just a party; and beauty lies in the eyes of the beholder.
Ann Rapp and Judy Price
Eleanora Kennedy, Muriel Siebert, and Sharon Sondes
Grace Meigher and Hilary Geary Ross
Gail Hilson and Josie Robertson
Krista Krieger and Tina Addison
Lisa McCarthy and Heather Leeds
Tracy Snyder, Amy Fine Collins, and Cynthia Lufkin
Mary Davidson and Melinda Hassen
Polly Espy and Candy Hamm
Stephanie Krieger and Anne Ames
Karen Clarke and Pat Patterson
Suzette de Marigny Smith, June Schorr, and Sava Thomas
Grace Hightower and Gayle Perkins Atkins
Ellen Graham and Margo Langenberg
Sharon Handler, Catherine Cahill, and Nancy O'Sullivan
Muffy Miller and Maggie Norris
Alex Lind Rose and Elizabeth Asch
Cynthia Lufkin and friend
Joanne de Guardiola
Somers Farkas, Jessie Araskog, and Dana Hammond Stubgen
Jamee Gregory
Sandra Whitney and Charlene Nederlander
Dana Hammond Stubgen and Ghislaine Maxwell
Virginia Melhado and Peggy Mejia
Amy Fine Collins, Beth DeWoody, and Francine LeFrak
Mariana Kaufman, Jill Gilmour, and Lis Waterman
Pam Pantzer and Eleanora Kennedy
Denise Rich and Alex Kuczynski
Andrea Stark and Darcie Gould
Debbie Bancroft and Lisa McCarthy
Patricia Duff, Nicole Miller, and friend
Patty Raynes and Blair Clarke
Kathy Thomas and Blair Clarke
Peggy Siegal
Jackie Weld Drake
Patricia Duff
JIll Brooke and Beth DeWoody
Bettina Zilkha and Susan Dunleavy
Marcia Mishaan and Tiffany Dubin
Audrey Gruss and Gail Hilson
Ann Rapp and Cece Black
Lyn Paulsin and Cornelia Bregman
Barbara de Portago and Margo Langenberg
Mai Harrison, Virginia Melhado, and Peggy Mejia
Leila Heller and Patty Raynes
Carole Guest and Anne Eisenhower Flöttl
Paola Rosenshein and friend
The book party for Patrick McMullan’s newest volume “Glamour Girls” exceeded all others and maybe all other book parties we’ve seen around New York in these times.

There was one other – I think it was for his first book about the club scene – held on the main floor of Bergdorf Goodman one weeknight a few years ago. That was a scene (and it is recorded somewhere here on these pages), and a feast for those of us with a camera.

Because Patrick brings out possibly the most eclectic crowd on the contemporary New York social scene; viz., the Upper East Side and the uber-downtown. The Beautiful People and the gritty-gliterateri, all pipped up, hipped up and too cool for cute. So it’s a good party. There were mobs around the table for his booksigning at the Whitney. There are swarms who know each other and hordes who don’t know the swarms and friends till the bitter end, all mixed together. Afterwards at Bergdorf’s where Gilles Mendel was throwing a dinner for him, there was a big crowd. Furthermore, Patrick who used to be photographer and is now a social force himself (always with a camera in hand or closeby) is one of those rara avis who’s nice to everybody. So they (we) all love Patrick.

The new book will have to be dealt with on another Diary because it’s too much to talk about here. You will have a very good time looking at it. Many things will pass before your eyes and believe me, many thoughts will pass through your mind including some you might not want to repeat, for a variety of reasons. It’s a feast, like I said. And you know with feasts you have to pace yourself or you’ll eventually pass out.
Cornelia and Marissa Bregman
Alex Lind Rose and Ann Caruso
Francisco Martinrao and Andreas Barbscrum
Olivia Palermo and Brad Leinhardt
Rufus Albemarle and Eva Lorenzotti
Maer Roshan and ???
Debbie Bancroft and Geoffrey Bradfield
Louis and Alexandra Lind Rose with Douglas Hannant
Alexandra Lind Rose and Ann Caruso
Andrew Saffir, Bettina Zilkha, and Daniel Benedict
Lesley Stevens, Dan Ragone, and Scott Currie
Debbie Bancroft and Geoffrey Bradfield
Matt Dickinson
Amy Fine Collins and Richard Turley
James Tully
Susan Magrino and friend
Maer Roshan and Doug Dechart
Damon Johson with Doug Dechert
Malik Sterling
Andrew Saffir and Daniel Benedict
Last Tuesday, Mariska Hargitay hosted a party on behalf of Safe Horizon, the nation's leading victims assistance organization, at MOMA in New York, to celebrate the national launch of SafeWork and the premiere of the film(Un) Safe.
Jane Randel, Pam Hootkin, Jose Alvarez, Mariska Hargitay, Brook McMurray, and Jane Rivkin
SafeWork is a national movement to challenge corporate leaders to recognize domestic violence in the workplace and take action to address it. The film (Un) Safe is directed by noted, award-winning indie filmmaker James Ponsoldt. It portrays the impact of domestic violence on an executive, her children, her colleagues and her company when abuse invades the workplace. Mariska Hargitay is a dedicated advocate of Safe Horizon.
Jane Randel, Mariska Hargitay, and Brook McMurray
Morgen Turner, Mariska Hargitay, and Robert Mckay
Pam Hootkin, Brook McMurray, and Jane Rivkin
Scott Milldtein, Jae Lee, and Tony Tao
Malaak Compton-Rock, Mariska Hargitay, and friend
Anne Erhard and Erica Vogelie
Sandra Turner, Morgan Turner, and Eric Turner
Emily Goodwin and Daryn Rosenberg
Mariska Hargitay and friend
Colin Spoelman, Anna Richardson, James Ronsoldt, Morgen Turner, and Robert McKay
Susan Lingston and Lee Lesley

Photographs by DPC & ©

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