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Party Scene

March 17, 2015

The Party: Dressed in spring style, guests gathered under the main tent in Marion Square for a luncheon from Halls Chophouse, fashion from Gwynn’s of Mount Pleasant, an auction, and a special runway walk from pint-sized former patients of the MUSC Children’s Hospital, dressed in Vineyard Vines and enormous smiles.

Highlight: The entire room was on its feet, cheering and applauding the heroic doctors and nurses of MUSC Children’s Hospital as they joined their beloved patients in their final walk down the runway.

Overheard: “Have you ever seen a smile that big?!” —Charleston Area Convention and Visitors Bureau executive director Helen Hill as Zion Thomas strutted his stuff on the catwalk

Beneficiary: MUSC Children’s Hospital and Women’s Pavilion

March 13, 2015

The Party: Lit by flickering candles surrounded by rose petals, the Charleston Marriot was transformed into an Arabian oasis for a night of dinner, dancing, and auctions.

Highlights: Local celebrities donned glitzy outfits to showcase their routines with professional dancers from the Fred Astaire Dance Studio.

Overheard: “Is this not the best party!?”

Beneficiary: Over $230,000 was raised for the American Lung Association with a portion of the funds supporting Camp Breathe Easy, a South Carolina camp for asthmatic children and their parents and guardians. 

March 13, 2015

The Party: Guests slid on their designers duds and arrived at the Charleston Marriott ballroom to dine with Hamish Bowles, Vogue's international editor-at-large, for The Women's Council of the Gibbes Museum's annual Art of Design benefit.

Highlights: Hamish Bowles' wit and insight into the fashion world left event-goers giggling and gasping in awe at multiple points throughout his lecture.

Overheard: "The ladies fawned over me like very kind and glamorous aunts . . . I knew that there was no turning back." 

Beneficiary: The Gibbes Museum of Art

The Party: Festivalgoers convened at the beautiful William Aiken House to feast on one-of-a-kind dishes from local and guest chefs and sip from a diverse selection of wines made from the Pinot grape.

Highlights: The weather! Absolutely every attendee remarked on the gorgeous spring weather that made this spectacular outdoor event all the more memorable. Sunshine and wine? We’ll cheers to that.

Overheard: “What happens in Charleston stays in Charleston!”

Beneficiary: BB&T Charleston Wine + Food Festival is a nonprofit organization that celebrates Charleston's culinary heritage and funds scholarship programs at the Culinary Institute of Charleston, The Arts Institute of Charleston, and College of Charleston’s Department of Hospitality and Tourism Management.

February 22, 2015

The Party: Partygoers donned their Hollywood best and headed to TRIO for an Oscars party worthy of the stars, complete with a raw bar, hors d’ouevres, and live music.

Highlights: A living golden statute greeted guests after they made their red carpet appearances.

Overheard: “Hey Quiana—pass me the mic!”

Beneficiary: Pet Helpers is a non-profit animal rescue with a spay/neuter clinic. Their mission is to end the euthanasia of adoptable cats and dogs and support the humane treatment of animals everywhere.

February 12, 2015

The Party: VIP guests got an exclusive preview of the Southeastern Wildlife Exposition at a gala and live auction held at the Belmond Charleston Place. 

Highlights: A Sandhill Crane walked freely amongst patrons as they perused artwork. The live auction featured such lavish items and excursions as a bronze sculpture by award-winning American artist Rod Zullo, the original painting by Grant Hacking from which the SEWE 2015 poster was created, and a hunting trip to Spain. 

Overheard: "I wish the owl was up for auction. I would take him home!"

Beneficiary: The Southeastern Wildlife Exposition's mission is to raise awareness for wildlife and nature conservation and celebrate the natural beauty and fauna of the South.

February 8, 2015

The Party: After 12 fabulous seasons, it was time for PURE Theatre to throw themselves a party to celebrate their achievements. The thespians curated a fun afternoon soiree complete with oyster-shucking, a live auction, and live entertainment. 

Highlights: The event heated up as the members of southern rock band Minimum Wage took the stage and guests grabbed plates of food from The Macintosh head chef Jeremiah Bacon. To keep the fun going, Laura Ball & Friends performed upbeat theatrical tunes.

Overheard: "I can't tell if you're bidding or flirting with me!"

Beneficiary: PURE Theatre

February 8, 2015

The Party: The Gourmet & Grapes Farewell Brunch capped off a weekend of extravagant eating, with one last decadent meal served up by the culinary talent of Kiawah Island Golf Resort at the Sanctuary Hotel's scenic Jasmine Porch restaurant.

Highlights: A sea turtle ice sculpture inspired by the February cover of Charleston magazine, Earl Grey macaroons crafted by French pastry chef Remy Funfrock, and jaw-dropping views of the Atlantic

Overheard: “And that’s how I met the pool boy.”

Beneficiary: The Hollings Cancer Center at the Medical University of South Carolina 

February 7, 2015

The Party: Twelve chefs and thirty distilleries from near and far gathered together to celebrate these two decadent and diverse ingredients in support of the Junior League of Charleston.

Highlights: Guests had the chance to purchase samples of rare bourbons, some of which only have a select few bottles left available in the world. Popular culinary concoctions included a "death by pork" lasagna that had bacon infused into almost every layer, as well as a bacon fudge with candied pork belly and pop rocks.

Overheard: “I never thought the words 'candied pork belly' and 'delicious' would be uttered in the same sentence!”

Beneficiary: The Junior League of Charleston is a women's group that champions local causes through fundraising and volunteering.

February 6, 2015

The Party: The kickoff dinner for the seventh annual weekend-long Gourmet and Grapes event was held in the beautiful Ocean Room restaurant at The Sanctuary at Kiawah Island Golf Resort, benefitting the MUSC Hollings Cancer Center. 

Highlights: Four guest chefs who had previously worked at the now-closed Woodlands Mansion were reunited, combining their culinary talents to create an exquisite meal for donors and participants. Ken Vedrinski and Nate Whiting still reside and work in Charleston, and Scott Crawford traveled from Raleigh and Tarver King from Lovettsville, Virginia to be a part of this celebration of the finest wines and cuisine.

Overheard: "This is the first time we've ever completely sold out, and I think it has to do with the lineup."

Beneficiary: Over $250,000 was raised for the MUSC Hollings Cancer Center, which is the largest academic cancer center in South Carolina and works tirelessly in treatment, education, prevention, and research for all cancer patients.

The Party: Tradd and Weesie Newton, the owners of Fleet Landing, hosted Chart a Course for Children, which raised $240,480 for the Dee Norton Lowcountry Children's Center. The evening consisted of a cocktail party and a silent auction–complete with extravagant trips to Costa Rica and Argentina, bottles of fine wine, jewelry, exclusive golf outings, and more. 

Highlights: A large tub filled with miniature Champagne bottles, each with a number, served as a fun raffle to win a stunning diamond and emerald ring set in gold provided by Croghan's Jewel Box. 

Overheard: "It's getting crowded here and you know what that means? It means these are the hottest things to bid on!"–a guest as he made his way along the silent auction tables.

Beneficiary: The Dee Norton Lowcountry Children's Center

January 30, 2015

The Party: Trident Technical College celebrated their 12th annual fundraiser with a lavish four-course dinner catered by The Culinary Institute of Charleston and five-star live and silent auctions.

Highlights: Among the auction items was a Belmond Charleston Place Experience package and a culinary vacation to Tuscany. After dinner, guests were treated to a chocolate and cordials reception in the lobby, with trays full of gourmet chocolates. 

Overheard: “This room we’re in is actually a classroom, and these Culinary Institute students have been working all month to prepare this dinner.”

Beneficiary: Over 80% of the students at Trident Technical College use some sort of financial aid; $465,870 was raised at the event to help support them.

January 31, 2015

The Party: Guests convened at a Parisian-themed black tie affair at Memminger Auditorium featuring a cocktail hour, live entertainment, catering from local restaurants, and live and silent auctions.

Highlights: American Idol contestant Quiana Parler and the Shiny Disco Ball Band brought down the house with stirring renditions of songs from the past fifty years. The Granary and other local foodie favorites provided tasty hors d’oeuvres while guests bid on auction items that ranged from jewelry to a trip to Disney World.

Overheard: “I am very rare. I ate a two pound lobster from Halls Chophouse when I was nine....and I survived neuroblastoma.” 

Beneficiary: Chase After A Cure, a nonprofit dedicated to children’s cancer research

January 22, 2015

The Party: Charleston’s most fashionable gathered at Spring Street wedding boutique Maddison Row for a cocktail party kicking off New York designer Hilton Hollis’ weekend-long trunk show.

Highlights: Inspired by a recent trip to Puerto Rico, Hollis' spring collection "Nomads" is abundant in eye-catching color mixtures, relaxed silhouettes, and airy fabrics. Models showed off some of the new styles while guests enjoyed champagne cocktails from Ben Arnold Beverage Co. and hors d’oeuvres provided by Maddison Row. 

Overheard: “Southern women appreciate my clothes because they’re feminine and detail-oriented.”

Beneficiary: Proceeds benefitted One80 Place, which provides food, shelter, medical care, education, and more to those in need.

January 22, 2015

The Party: VIP guests mingled among jazz performers and musicians on the William Aiken House’s open porch before strolling to the American Theater, where rich performances brought to life the legacy of jazz music in the Holy City.

Highlights: The red carpet was rolled out in front of the American Theatre with a photographer ready to capture guests upon their arrival, making all feel like a big part of the jazz celebration.

Overheard: “…if the jazz musicians play loud enough, maybe someone will hear, because we live in Charleston.”—An excerpt from the introductory poem to the festival.

Beneficiary: The Jazz Artists of Charleston seeks to cultivate and encourage a vigorous and dynamic jazz culture in the city of Charleston.

January 20, 2015

The Party: Grill 225 hosted an elegant evening featuring a cocktail hour, three-course blind-dining experience, and live auction in support of the Association for the Blind and Visually Impaired.

Highlights: Before the entrée course, food writer and critic for the Post and Courier Hanna Raskin encouraged attendees to put on their blindfolds and taste with their other four senses.

Overheard: “I can’t find my steak! Did you take it?!”

Beneficiary:  Funds raised by the dinner and live auction supported the ABVI’s programs and services designed to help those living with blindness and visual impairments in the tri-county area.  

January 15, 2015

The Party: Patrons came dressed to the nines in their favorite vintage garb to celebrate the opening of the Charleston Museum’s latest exhibition, Fashion Flashback, 1920s-1960s: Five Decades of Style that Changed America. Good Food Catering dished out miniature duck pizzettes, fried green tomatoes with pimento cheese, and more as guests journeyed through half a century of exquisite American style to the tune of musical throwbacks.

Highlights: Julie Wheat decked out guests in an eclectic array of vintages pieces ranging from hats and sunglasses to fur coats and even a Gucci skirt from her Mount Pleasant boutique, Cavortress.

Overheard: “He just returned from Pearl Harbor. It’s a shame we got bombed,” said a guest, staying true to her early-1940’s attire.

Beneficiary: The Charleston Museum

December 4, 2014


The Party: 103.5 WEZL hosted the 2014 "Girls with Guitars" Jingle Jam featuring Lucy Hale at the Charleston Harbor Resort and Marina.

Highlights: A large crowd surrounded the stage to see Lucy Hale, known for her role as Aria Montgomery from ABC Family's hit television show Pretty Little Liars, perform songs from her debut country music album, "Road Between."

Overheard: "Lucy Hale for president!"

Beneficiary: All proceeds from the event went towards the MUSC Children's Hospital. 

December 6, 2014

The Party:

The South Carolina Aquarium drew supporters of natural and sustainable practices for an evening of heavy hors d'oeuvres, drinks, live entertainment, and a live and silent auction among the glowing sea exhibits to benefit their education and conservation programs.


Indaco, Middleton Place Restaurant, Sesame Burgers, and The Cocktail Club served up sustainable small plates, while fire dancers, break dancers, and drag queens provided the night's entertainment. Brooke Collins dazzled guests with a magnificently-costumed lip-sync performance, followed by a live auction offering big-ticket items such as a vacation in New Orleans and the chance to be a character in a Mary Alice Monroe novel.


"I'm so mad I missed the fire dancers!"


The Aquarium Alliance seeks to understand and protect our natural and aquatic world through education and inspiring action in the community.

November 22, 2014

The Party:

Local merchants flaunted their goodies while shoppers grazed on food truck fare and sips from the Lowcountry beer garden.


The Maker Tours offered a behind-the-scenes look at the production facilities of area breweries, furniture makers, and a foldable kayak company.


"Where did all these vendors come from? It's a Localpalooza!"


Lowcountry Local First promotes local businesses and goods through advocacy, support, and community initiatives.


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