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The Scene Bisnow
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October 31, 2008



Last night we satisfied a jingoistic lust for international sport (the Olympics left us jonesin’) by joining 150 polo enthusiasts at the Australian Embassy for wine and cheese to kick off America’s Cup. Each year, a different country challenges the US to a match. (Italy last year, and the UK before that.) The invitation travels through the highest government levels and is as much an exercise in diplomatic partnership as it is a sporting event. We grabbed our passport and made our way to Massachusetts Ave.


Remind you of your college roommate? In our excitement to fit in with the polo crowd, we brought our own bat, wickets, and bludger. Upon arrival, we were politely informed those were cricket and Harry Potter paraphernalia, not polo. We stuck with a camera to capture this didgeridoo player. The actual America’s Cup match is May 9th, 2009, and will feature an air show, fireworks, and a performance by American Idol contestant Michael Johns.


Mediterranean Cellars’ Louizos Papadopoulos serves red from his winery to Sara Trab Nielsen, Robert Do (polo club president), and ABSi’s Rajeev and Seema Sharma. Rajeev sends his compliments by jumping the gun on the tasting. He and Seema are generous America’s Cup benefactors, which is raising money this year for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and Journey For The Cure. Robert tells us he’s such a hopeless polo addict that he’s heading to Argentina to play during the winter.


Marcos Bignoli, right, is polo director at Capitol Polo Club, host of this year’s Cup. He’s joined by Four Gates’ Neil Agate (board member) and wife Kathy. Marcos promised us a horse ride if we told you that his club is the closest to DC, 35 minutes away in Poolesville, MD. They offer classes for all ages and are looking to host more events, like last year’s Green Cup, the first carbon-neutral polo event in the country. It’s also a unique fundraising opportunity, and next year Marcos hopes to generate over $100,000 for local charities.


Lt. Col Tristan Siegel, just back from Iraq, is joined by Hogan & Hartson’s Taryn Fielder and Yulia Gilstrap. After 24 years in the Army, Tristan is joining the FBI’s Office of General Counsel. Speaking of armed forces, this year’s America’s Cup is held on the anniversary of the Battle of the Coral Sea, where the US Navy came to the aid of Australia during a 1942 attack by the Japanese. So tell your employers you need Coral Sea Day off. We’re sure they’ll know what you mean.


True patriots: Aussie soprano Maria Pollicina sang the Australian national anthem with accompaniment from local jazz musician Christopher Linman. Sgt. 1st Class Antonio Giuliano, right, of the US Army Chorus, delivered the Star-Spangled Banner. Chris has performed at the Kennedy Center numerous times, and you can see Antonio sing at the Renwick Gallery’s Italian cultural festival on November 9.


Friday Night:

Sixth Annual Scandalous Halloween Party, presented by Absolute Addiction at the Shadow Room (one of the newest clubs on the K Street corridor. Pre-Sale tickets online are $20 and tickets at the door are $25: DC.AbsoluteAddiction.com

Ninth Annual Nightmare on M Street: Join 6,000 Halloween partygoers decked out in their most ghoulish costumes, taking advantage of drink and food specials at over 15 midtown bars, including McFaddens, Madhatter, and the Front Page.  Purchase your tickets at the event for $20.

Palace of Wonders Best Halloween Show Ever: Find out if Palace of Wonders on H Street in NE really does put on the “Best Halloween Show Ever” and rate the burlesque performances, go-go show, and more firsthand, by purchasing tickets for $15 in advance or $20 at the door.  Show starts at 10 and costumes are highly encouraged.

Saturday Night:

If you survived the mayhem of Halloween night and are rallying for one of the many private Halloween parties or just opting for a relaxed dinner out, Founding Farmers is a must- try.  This “green” restaurant boasts a cool farmhouse atmosphere with a mixture of big wooden community tables and booth seating.  We suggest the chef-made Farmer Jon and The Classic Mai Tai for cocktails and the homemade Potato Chips and Dip and Devil-ish Eggs for apps.  Choose from an assortment of fresh fish, meats, and pastas for an entrée.  1924 Pennsylvania Ave. NW. 

PN Hoffman
Pride and Glory
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