Hats, Hares, and Honors

MAGICAL NIGHT AT THE FOLGER

As the emcee was announced at the Folger Shakespeare Library Gala dinner, a large white rabbit ambled onto the Elizabethan stage, climbed stairs to a small platform, stretched up to place both paws on either side of the microphone, and in a deep baritone (by remote) told of the acts to come. The announcement – a long one – finished, he left the mike and hopped offstage, his work done. The show featured “buskers,” or street entertainers (known since Shakespeare’s time and a millennium before), some comedy fishwives, magic acts, the Guiness Book of Records’ “fastest balloon artist,” and a spectacular juggler. Seen: co-chairs and , Folger director ; ,, , , and .

PARTY KALEIDOSCOPE

honored the wives of two former ambassadors briefly in town, Anne Bujon de l’Estang (France) and (Italy), inviting a score of D.C.’s A-list ladies for luncheon, including , , , , , , Alexandra DeBorchgrave, , , , , , and Hilda BrillemburgVeronica Valencia-Sarukhan, the wife of the ambassador of Mexico, hosted members of Arts For the Aging at the Mexican Cultural Institute. Co-chairs were and , who had a busy week, as she and husband Giorgio entertained most of the Italian embassy for dinner at their home, including the ambassador of Morocco and his wife, , who is Italian …. “She’s the sexiest 92-year-old I know” said a guest (male) at Richard and ’s patron’s party for the Georgetown House Tour, speaking of , who makes no secret of her age. The tour’s longtime organizer, she gently commandeers display homes. “You can’t say no to Frieda,” said one householder.”

DECATUR HOUSE EXHIBIT

A gala dinner previewed a ground-breaking exhibit at Decatur House, displayed in the building’s former slave-quarters. It sheds light on the joys and sorrows of the historic African-American community in this shadow of the White House. Many African-American artifacts are included from sport’s star ’s extensive collection. Guests were welcomed by . Togo West, Jr. (co-chair of the dinner with wife Gail) spoke eloquently on the significance of the display on this 145th year of the Emancipation’s signing. Supporters included Marcia and , John Irelan, , Sally and , as well as Tricia and , who co-sponsored the exhibit with the Coca Cola Company.

REMEMBERING GOGO

The 140-voiced Washington Chorus has seldom sounded as magnificent as one recent afternoon at Kennedy Center. The late Gogo (Mary Louise) Kiplinger, a wise and witty woman, beloved of all her friends, was a staunch supporter of the chorus, which dedicated this concert to her. The many friends who gathered were greeted by her husband Austin and son Todd, while son Knight, a longtime chorus member, and wife Ann, whom he met there, added their voices to the moving tribute.

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