November 4, 2016

Knock Out Abuse! Going Places Gala!

Last night, we headed to the 23rd annual Knock Out Abuse Against Women gala at The Ritz-Carlton DC.

Since 1993, Knock Out Abuse has been helping women and children whose lives have been affected by domestic violence. We snapped the founders, Jill Sorensen and Cheryl Masri, who welcomed the room full of women to KOA's largest fundraiser of the year.

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The ladies walked down a red carpet and were escorted by gentlemen in tuxedos to the cocktail reception, where they ate mini crab cakes and tuna tartare, sipped on the Elyx Cup with vodka, mint and sparkling wine and took pictures at the photo booth. Here, KOA auction co-chair Ellen Spiegel, TOWF's Joyce Schneider and Jennifer Hirsch flanking Savills Studley's Wendy Feldman Block.

At dinner, Grammy-award winning jazz artist Patti Austin serenaded the crowd, while they savored a lavish three-course meal of pan-seared sea scallops with sweet corn ravioli, roasted duck breast in cognac sherry wine sauce and cream cheese apple tart. Here, Hope Floats' Kimmie Boone, Norah Claire Aesthetics' Norah Gourlay and Century 21's Andrea Paro.

Proceeds will go toward helping the victims of domestic violence at Bethany House, Crossway Community, Safe Shores and the DC Volunteer Lawyers Project. Here, NIH's Heidi Kong, Concord Hill School's Blaire Massa and Donna Sturtevant, and Birchstone Moore LLC's Erin Galper.

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Going Places Gala Raises $1.4M!

Wednesday night, the commercial real estate industry flexed its philanthropic muscles at the ninth annual Higher Achievement Going Places Gala. Vornado/Charles E. Smith president Mitchell Schear—who was already having an eventful week—has served as gala chair for years before relinquishing the reins this time around, was honored, and the gala raised $1.4M, a record. He's on the right, with fellow commercial real estate legends Kingdon Gould III and Robert Kogod.

Mitchell is the board chair of Higher Achievement and was honored for his years of dedication to the organization that provides after-school and summer programs for middle schoolers from underserved communities. He's above with son Sam, Higher Achievement alumna Sydney, daughter Mollie and this year's gala chair, DLA Piper's Jay Epstien. “Our commitment as a business community has been inspired, in large measure, by the commitment of our good friend, Mitchell Schear, and his passion for this truly terrific organization," Jay said.

Mitchell's tireless work for the organization, which graduates 96% of its participants from high school and 76% from college (DC averages: 64% and 9%, respectively) is only matched by his love of goofy sunglasses. This year, 700 people, many from the CRE community, gathered at the Warner Theatre—which Vornado, soon to be JBG Smith Properties, owns—for the gala and reception afterward.

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225th Anniversary Humanitini!

Last night, we went to 225th Anniversary Humanitini: The High Cost of Home Rule at Busboys and Poets at 5th and K streets. We snapped the panelists: associate professor of interdisciplinary social sciences at the University of the District of Columbia Amanda Huron, history professor at the University of Maryland Baltimore County G. Derek Musgrove and former professor of sociology at Howard University Joyce Ladner, with moderator Pamela Perkins, the CEO of thr Human Communication Institute. 

Humanitini is a happy hour where Washington's movers, shakers and creators come together to think and drink. In honor of DC's 225th anniversary, this year's Humanitini series has celebrated this city's colorful past, so that we can appreciate the present and plan for the future. Here, Legal Services Corp's Blair Gilbert with Peace Corps' Katie Kragh and Nora Graves.

Thursday's happy hour panel focused on home rule in DC. In the early '90s, Washington was gripped by epidemics of drugs, violence and political turmoil that ravaged the city and left it nearly bankrupt. Seeking to restore order and financial solvency, Congress assumed control of District affairs by instituting a Financial Control Board. While the board was reviled for its perceived role in disempowering Washingtonians, and especially those of color, it also ushered in an era of government efficiency and economic prosperity, leaving behind a mixed legacy that we still grapple with today. Here are HumanitiesDC staff: Calvin Koon-Stack, Jay Stewart, Louis Hicks, Stephanie Scott and Jasper Collier.

Global Impact's Brandolon Barnett and The Morris & Gwendolyn Cafritz Foundation's Messay Derebe.

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Noche Tropical!

More than 500 people attended the annual Noche Tropical gala for Mary's Center at the Washington Hilton in Dupont Circle. Mary's Center, a nonprofit that provides healthcare to its clients, no matter how challenging background, language or economic standing may be, raised more than $500k for its program from the well-attended gala. Here, event emcee and NBC Washington chief meteorologist Doug Kammerer with Mayor Muriel Bowser and Mary's Center president/CEO Maria Gomez.

The gala is also where Mary's Center gives awards for its local champions. The awards ceremony is followed by an evening of Carnavale-themed festivities, including silent/live auctions, a rum and cigar bar, and blackjack, roulette and craps, the proceeds from which all go to funding healthcare for DC's most in need. Here, Mary's Center board chair Nina Albert, Briya Public Charter School's Christie McKay, PNC Bank regional president Michael Harreld and Maria present Michael and PNC the Oral Health Champion Award. 


Fred Armisen!

Wednesday night, we headed to the 9:30 Club for a special stand-up and musical performance from SNL alumnus Fred Armisen! We snapped the comedian with two fans who dressed up as SNL's "Garth and Kim"—his hilarious character with Kristen Wiig from their time on the show—onstage at his show. Fred is currently on a national tour as he gears up for his upcoming season of Portlandia

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Friday, November 11, 6:30 – 10:00 PM, EmPOWER 2016 10th Year Anniversary Celebration at Hotel Monaco Alexandria, 480 King St Alexandria, VA. Evening will feature honored guests, delicious food, cocktails, music, dancing, silent auction and more! Cocktail attire/black-tie optional. Benefits Tigerlily Foundation's life-saving education and support for women before, during, and after breast cancer. $125,  info

Friday, November 4

6:00 – 8:00 PM, Luce Unplugged: Concert with Hand Grenade Job + K A G at the Smithsonian American Art Museum Luce Foundation Center. Free, cash bar with snacks and drinks + free tastings from Bold Rock Hard Cider, info

5:00 – 8:00 PM, A Tribute to Pete Homer by Anderson Indian Law Firm, Homer Law, Josephine's Joy at the National Indian Gaming Association, 224 2nd St SE. Enjoy authentic Indian tribal drum performances, hors d'oeuvres and cocktails. $50, info.  

8:00 PM, Chambers: Wu-Tang Art Exhibition Closing Reception at Blind Whino, 700 Delaware Ave SW. Enjoy an Instant Vintage pop-up record fair and auction featuring vendors of Hip Hop, Soul, Funk, Jazz and Rock music. Free/21+ to enter, info.

9:00 PM, Swedish House Mafia DJ Axwell at Echostage, 2135 Queens Chapel Road NE. $30, info.

8:00PM, Art Soiree's Political Cartoon Exhibit: Hillary vs Trump Cartoon Debate at The Ritz-Carlton, Georgetown 3100 South St NW. Featuring the latest coverage of 2016 election through the works of nine renowned editorial cartoonists. Benefiting CRNI. $20, info.  

Saturday, November 5

6:00 – 10:00 PM, Homeward Trails Animal Rescue Charity Art at the historic Terminal A at Reagan National Airport, Arlington. Hosted by ABC7/WJLA-TV's Julie Wright, live auction featuring 35 pieces of art from local artists, food, drink, and live music. $100, info.  


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Saturday, November 5

11:00 AM, Trail Magic: A Fall Outdoor Excursion (with The Offline Society) at REI, 1196 3rd St NE.  Trail magic surprises along the way, and a professional hiking guide to lead, following a rendezvous at Wunder Garten for drinks, info.

12:00 – 3:00 PM, Doggie Pool Party at The Washington Hilton, 1919 Connecticut Ave NW. Dogs will enjoy the outdoor heated pool complimentary treats and hot cider for owners. $5/suggested donation benefits The Humane Rescue Alliance (formerly The Washington Humane Society),  info.  

2:30 – 4:00 PM, Blondes vs Brunettes DC Game Day at Trinity Washington University, 125 Michigan Ave NE. $25 donation includes game and after party at Rumors, info.  

6:00 – 11:00 PM, 2016 Arts for Autism Gala at The Westin Alexandria, 400 Courthouse Square, Alexandria. Runway show & gala of beauty, fashion, and fun benefiting the Autism Society of Northern Virginia. $100, info.  

6:00 – 10:00 PM, Side Yards: Third Annual Sideshow at The Yards Park, 355 Water St SE. Stages of entertainment including: contortionists, magicians, juggling, escape artists, snake handling, fire breathing, sword swallowing and more. Free, info.  

Sunday, November 6

1:00 – 9:00 PM, Tweed Ride & Jazz-Age Jam at Roofers Union, 2446 18th St NW. Tweed Ride is free, but entrance to after-party begins at 5:30PM, featuring the legendary Dandy Wellington and His Band, the Fidgety Feet Dancers, food and drinks. $20, info.  

12:30 PM, Italian Film Screening at The National Gallery of Art, 6th & Constitution Ave NW.  Film screening of the devastating November 1966 flood in Florence, Italy, the sole documentary. Free, info