10/04/2010 - Welcome to the new home of Social Lights. Read new online reports with photos each week and their reprisals in the monthly print edition which you will get free by mail in the 48009, 48301,48302 & 48304 zip codes. If you live elsewhere, you can order a subscription in the upper right index at the top of this page (subscriptions). If you want e-mail notification of when new Social Lights columns are posted to this site each Monday, sign up in the Newsletter Sign Up box at the lower right side of this home page.
Friends of Oakland Family Services' Big Band Night
Donna Young and her committee surely had lots of fun researching the '40s and '50s to plan their benefit party that attracted nearly 220 to the Townsend Sept. 24. We're talking white carnation boutonnières for the men and orchid wrist corsages for the ladies; demonstrations of ballroom, jitterbug and Lindy dances by Arthur Murray dancers; two pretty cigarette girls in short skirts and net stockings. (Not to worry. The cigarettes and cigars in their trays were the candy variety.) Friends board president Dee Wright-Masilotti also referenced how they studied old menus before selecting Caesar salad and braised short ribs of beef. She also did a stellar job detailing the OFS loyalties of the three honorary chair couples – Julie & Joe Beals, Bettty & Herb Fisher and Kathy & Kirk Martin. And after the live bidding conducted pro bono by auctioneer David Levy and pledges inspired by OFS CEO Michael Earl generated $ 21,600, it seemed like the whole room crowded the dance floor to dance to Jerry Fenby Band's music. The retro event grossed more than $34,000 to help OFS establish healthy individuals and successful families.
Motor City Lyric Opera's Night at the French Opera
The MCLO Children's Chorus and members of Detroit Country Day School's performing arts conservatory recently shared the stage with mezzo-soprano Leah Dexter and tenor Corey Roberts at DCDS's Seligman Performing Arts Center. Their selections from "Carmen," "Phantom of the Opera," and "Les Miserables" earned them enthusiastic applause from the audience of 250. Socializing preceded and followed the performance which was introduced by honorary chair Jack Krasula. He made a compelling pitch for MCLO's mission – to take fine music to Detroit schools. The event raised some $25,000 for the organization's Operas on Wheels program.
"An idea whose time has come," is how many described The Community House's new chamber music series, which kicked off the last Sunday in September. It attracted 180 for brunch ($25-friend, $50-patron, $12-children) and 30 more for the concert only ($10) which featured violinist Hai-Xin Wu and pianist Zhihua Tang performing such favorites as Franck's "Sonata for Violin and Piano". Nancy & Keith Kleckner, Barbara Van Dusen, Lois & Gene Miller, Helen & Clyde Wu, Barbara & Paul Czamanske, Barbara Frankel and Sandy & Rick Nahm were a few of the music lovers spotted in the crowd that gave the musicians a rousing, standing ovation. The next brunch and concert Oct. 31 will star the Icarus Trio (flutist Richard Sherman, pianist James Wilhelmsen & series artistic director /cellist Robert deMaine). Call (248) 644-5832 to reserve.
Preservation Bloomfield's Corn Roast at Bowers Farm
Harvest time is a good excuse to eat sweet corn, pet animals, go on a hayride and raise a few shekels ($4,000) for Preservation Bloomfield. The old fashioned social at Bowers Farm, complete with music, attracted more than 160, including Dave Bogart, Dave Baumhart, Chuck Kirkpatrick, Colleen Burcar, Betty Bright, Joanne Cherney, Pat Ribiat, Karin Eynon, the Brian Jardine clan and Bee Englehart, who coordinated the donated baked goods table. PB was founded by the leaders of the four Bloomfields – the township, the city, the school district and the historical society. Its mission is to build community and preserve the area's heritage including the Barton Farmhouse and the Craig Log Cabin, both of which have been moved to the Bowers Farm. For more information visit www.preservationbloomfield.org.
Ronald McDonald House Gala Sets Sail
The Southeast Michigan McDonald's Operators Association tossed its annual fundraising gala aboard the Ovation Yacht and 250 seized the opportunity to jettison the event's usual formal attire. The honorary chairs were Trevor Lauer, Michael Layne, Diana Lewis and Tom Moroch. With Kimmie Horne's mellow vocals as accompaniment, they cruised the Detroit River, bid in a silent auction and dined on the stroll at stations offering shrimp, pasta, tenderloin and turkey. The late evening snack served on the deck was S'mores. Some bought blinkie lights for an IPad raffle and cards for a wine raffle and a Super Bowl XLV package raffle. The event raised $144,000 for the Ann Arbor and Detroit Ronald McDonald Houses which provide a home away from home for families of hospitalized children.