Rural Intelligence: The Online Magazine for Eastern New York, Western Connecticut and the Southern Berkshires
Thursday, August 21, 2014
Search Archives:
Newsletters Signup
Close it

RI Archives: Parties

View all past Party articles.

Classical Tents

Robin Hood Radio

Benchmark Real Estate

Hudson Opera House

Jacobs Pillow

Berkshire Money Mangement

Hudson LIbrary


Dr Jay Wise

Hudson Valley River Ramble



Parties & Openings

August 16 - Litchfield
Susan B. Anthony Project Gala

August 16 - Old Chatham
Fourth Annual B.I.T.S. Gala

August 10 - Millerton
NECC Chef & Farmer Brunch

B.I.T.S. Gala

Amy Krzanik reports from Old Chatham. Set under tents in a field on Little Brook Farm, with a breathtaking view of the surrounding hills, the fourth annual B.I.T.S. gala, held on Saturday, August 16, brought out a crowd of equestrian lovers. The farm, owned and operated by Lynn Cross, is one of the oldest and largest equine rescues in the northeast and is home to 68 horses, 70 cats and a handful of other beloved animals. B.I.T.S, or Balanced Innovative Teaching Strategies, was created at the farm to provide educational, vocational, and therapeutic programs to humans through interaction with rescued and rehabilitated horses. Over 2,000 individuals participate in the program annually, including children with disabilities, college interns, local school-age students on field trips, summer camp participants and law enforcement who attend seminars on how to recognize animal abuse. The evening’s festivities included an array of unique and delicious appetizers provided by Spice of Life Catering, silent and live auctions full of horse-themed goodies, and guest speakers who lauded Lynn Cross and the important work she’s doing for both animals and humans. Pictured above, Little Brook Farm owner and B.I.T.S. founder and executive director Lynn Cross with gala chairperson JoAnne Cayot.

New York State Assemblyman Steve McLaughlin with Karen Vrabel and the evening’s auctioneer, Andrew Rumpelt; Ellen Pierce, an 11-year volunteer at the Farm, with Summer Brennan, Lynn Cross’ daughter and the Farm’s principal horse trainer and riding instructor.

Clicker trainer Bob Viviano with Jim Bashford; Author J.R. Anderson (second from left), with New York State Humane Association members Sondra Woodvine, Susan C. McDonough and Pat Valusek.

Volunteers Gabby (far left), her sister Anna (second from left) and Tori (far right) pose with the Farm’s summer camp kids.

Bob Bradford and Laura Wright of Good Hope Farms, with Steve Rubenstein and Jeanne Rothman of Little Falls Farm, and James Wright, a volunteer firefighter; Caitlin and Gus Stewart, owners of Rancho Relaxo in New Jersey, which was inspired by the work being done at Little Brook Farm.

Howland Murphy and Julie Bohan; Volunteer Lexie Monson, with Marianne Pelletier, who donates her horse trailer and truck for the Farm’s use, and Diane Kurylo of Breezy Hill Stables.

The guest of honor, Fritz the miniature pony, who has an important job as a “Safe Horse Ambassador.”

(0) Comments

Enjoy this post? Share it with others.

Posted by Amy Krzanik on 08/17/14 at 11:46 AM • Permalink

Saturday In The Garden For The Susan B. Anthony Project

Lisa Green reports from Litchfield. Marigolds came to life, giant elephant skeletons lurked in the garden and dancers pivoted through the air while clinging to a gyroscope at the garden party hosted by Anthea Disney and Peter Howe on Saturday, August 16. The occasion was the annual fundraiser for the Susan B. Anthony Project, whose mission is to promote safety, healing and growth for all survivors of domestic and sexual abuse. The marigolds and other shape-shifting creatures were actually dancers from MOMIX, the wildly imaginative dance company that has over the years donated 11 performances to the Project. Each year, the Susan B. Anthony Project, based in Torrington, CT, provides counseling, shelter and support services to 2,500 survivors of domestic violence and sexual abuse. State and federal funding provides only 40 percent of the annual budget, so events such as this one help to make ends meet, explained Executive Director Barbara Spiegel, at right in photo above with Gina Deveaux, director of development.

Judith McElhone, executive director of Five Points Gallery in Torrington, Emily Dalton, a member of the Susan B. Anthony Project’s advisory council, and Nanette Falkenberg, vice president of its board of directors; Greg Bachmann, a sponsor of the event, with Brian Simerson.

Moses Pendleton, founder and artistic director of MOMIX, engages in witty repartee with Virginia Reynolds and Robert Reynolds of Washington, CT (where MOMIX is based); Connecticut’s First Lady, Cathy Malloy, and Governor Dannel P. Malloy.

Matt Giordano and Sara Santora, from Bantam, CT, attended in connection with MOMIX.

Rita Citrin and Kay Sheehan of New York are friends of the host, Anthea Disney; Susan Kendall, Tom Kendall and Deborah Foord.

MOMIX marigolds danced on the lawn.

(0) Comments

Enjoy this post? Share it with others.

Posted by Lisa Green on 08/16/14 at 09:47 PM • Permalink

Hancock Shaker Village Supper Is A Farm-Fresh Experience

Lisa Green reports from Pittsfield. It’s one thing for guests at a fundraiser to listen to a trustee talk about finances. But when the cows in the pasture move over to a spot where even they can hear the spiel, you know you have a good pitch.  On Saturday, August 9, approximately 160 guests (and bovines) gathered at Hancock Shaker Village for a farm-to-table supper to benefit the living history museum. Cocktails in the Shaker garden and a silent auction preview allowed guests the opportunity to watch tradecraft demonstrations by artisans and meet some of the farm’s baby animals. A family-style locavore supper, prepared by HSV’s Chef Michael Roller, featured many ingredients right from the farm, including an HSV herb vinaigrette and HSV sautéed beets. Proceeds raised from the live and silent auctions will help fund the ongoing preservation of the historic buildings, specifically to renew the exteriors and increase accessibility. Shown above, Gala Co-chairs Mary Rentz and Michael Zaccaro.

Curator Lesley Herzberg with Tracy Goodnow, gala committee member and newest board trustee; Artist Peggy Rivers, Dan Feld, a trustee, and Ann Berman Feld.

Marilyn Walter and Ron Walter, outgoing chairman of the board; Trustees Sharon Gamsin and Darin Johnson.

Visiting from New York: Greg Keffer, an architect, Nick Sizemore of Lacoste, and Adam MacLean, a freelance lifestyle consultant.

CEO Linda Steigleder with Richard Ackerman; Gary Corr, board treasurer, and Phil Sherman.

Director of Marketing and Communications, Shawn Hartley Hancock, and Dan Bianchi, mayor of Pittsfield; Trustee Michael Zaccaro is greeted by friendly goats handled by volunteer Rebecca van der Meulen.

Trustee Michael Zak and Lesley Herzberg enjoy a cocktail in the garden; Peter Rentz and Kathy Quattrochi, both members of the gala committee, enjoy a moment in the sun.

Bill Mangiardi, director of farm and facilities, introduces a month-old calf to guests.

(0) Comments

Enjoy this post? Share it with others.

Posted by Lisa Green on 08/10/14 at 02:31 PM • Permalink

Millerton Brunches On For The North East Community Center

Rachel Louchen reports from Millerton. Perfect weather, live music, great food… it’s no wonder the event saw such a good turnout. But of course, when the North East Community Center is involved, the tight-knit community of Millerton always shows up to give its support. So the excellent turnout for NECC’s fourth annual Chef & Farmer Brunch on Sunday, August 10 came as no surprise. Moved this year to Railroad Plaza in the heart of the town, the event saw many familiar faces who have attended in years past, as well as returning vendors like No. 9 Restaurant, John Andrews Restaurant and Copake Country Club, along with new supporters like Jacuterie and Chef’s Consortium. The Giving Tree returned this year to help sponsor and support NECC’s important food and social service programs for families, such as Share the Bounty Fresh Food Pantry, community cooking classes and a community garden. Above, NECC Executive Director Jenny Hansell with board member Bill McGinn

Herondale Farm’s Memoree Joelle with Little Gates & Co. Wine Merchants manager Melissa Davis; Director of Food Access Programs and coordinator for NECC Betsy McCall with Kristen Panzer, chair of NECC’s board.

Millerton residents Joel Ernst and Victoria Ernst; Hannah Peters and Emma Brinson doled out the required brunch beverage from Irving Farm Coffee Roasters.

Malka Fenyvesi came out with her brother, Director Shamu Sadeh of Adamah in Falls Village, and Brooke Lehman of The Watershed Center.

Sean Kennedy and Greta Murphy of Salisbury; The Moviehouse owners Robert Sadlon and Carol Sadlon.

Susan Bang, partner at Bang + Collins Public Relations, which worked on publicity for the event, with board member Christine Bates; NECC volunteers Haunna Sniffer and Brandon Hobbs.

Realtor John Panzer, Chris Panzer and Paul Harney, vice president of Harney & Sons Fine Teas.

(0) Comments

Enjoy this post? Share it with others.

Posted by Rachel Louchen on 08/10/14 at 02:30 PM • Permalink

Clermont’s Evening in Agra

Amy Krzanik reports from Germantown. As the sweet smell of incense wafted through the evening air, Friends of Clermont supporters mixed and mingled behind the mansion on August 9, taking in the view as the sun set over the Hudson River. The occasion was the historic site’s benefit, “An Evening in Agra,” whose theme was inspired by Livingston descendant Colonel William Linnaeus Gardner, who moved to India at the age of 18 to seek his fortune. There, he married a princess and started a family. Decorations, courtesy of the M(Group), included brightly colored silk hangings, floating orange and yellow flowers, table arrangements and even matching hot pink and orange cups and napkins. Cocktails were provided by Crossroads Pub and Brewery and the evening was catered by Marianne Thorsen and Marianna Morrison, a Hudson-based chef who has appeared on the Food Network’s Throwdown! with Bobby Flay. A successful silent auction allowed guests to wrangle for items such as a night’s stay at The Barlow Hotel, a Modern Farmer gift basket, a tour of the Cooper Hewitt with one of its curators, and many other unique items. Funds raised go toward preservation of the site, as well as the many educational programs — such as the new community garden — offered to Hudson-area students throughout the year. Shown above: Carleen and Richard Baright flank Clermont Executive Director Conrad Hanson.

Delphine Murphy, Joe Versace, Pamela Murphy and Scott Frankel; Pamela Morin and Navin Sharma.

Board member Chelsea Streifeneder and Shannon Streifeneder, sisters and owners of Body Be Well Pilates; Robin Gottlieb, RI contributor Carey Maloney and Julie Seymour.

Michael Moy and Joe Sniado; Kirsten Bates, Anne McGrath and board member Glenda Law.

Graphic artist Soosie Lazenby, metalwork artist Sullivan Walsh, Revlon’s Lucinda Treat and Adelia Geiger.

Photographer Valerie Shaff, with Livingston descendants Jennifer Ryan, Nicholas Kean and Robert Kean; Hilary Huntington and Jane Glucksman.

Clermont Board President Charles Geiger with Board Secretary Jim Joseph; Board member Don Westmore, Susan Karayannides and Adrienne Westmore.

Sullivan Walsh, Francine Hunter McGivern of CR10 Arts, and Daniel Rothbart; Karen and Rich Streifeneder.

Purcell Palmer, Charles Rosen of Harrison Travel, Lisa Fox Martin, board chair of The Thomas Cole National Historic Site, and Duke Dang of Dancers Responding to AIDS (DRA).

Board members Julie Seymour and Hermes Mallea; Patricia Rode, a speech language pathologist, with Brendan Kelly and Anne DiGiovanna.

Architect Chip Bohl, with Clermont’s Board Vice President Mary Ellen Ross and Vern Bergelin; Steve Mosto with Monique Segarra, a professor at the Bard Center for Environmental Policy.

David and Christine Kane of Tivoli; Carey Maloney, Joe MacGillis and Robert Belding.

Partygoers enjoy the weather and the views.

(0) Comments

Enjoy this post? Share it with others.

Posted by Amy Krzanik on 08/10/14 at 12:52 PM • Permalink

Norfolk Artists & Friends Show Exhibits The Town’s Talent

Lisa Green reports from Norfolk. The number of artists per capita in Norfolk, CT appears to be inordinately high as evidenced by the Norfolk Artists & Friends Art Show opening and reception on Friday, August 8. Twenty-four professional artists living and working in and around Norfolk presented their work in the Battell Stoeckel Gallery, a former carriage house and stables that sits among the verdant landscape of the Ellen Battell Stoeckel Estate. All manner of visual art was represented, including painting, drawing, printing, sculpture, photography and jewelry. Twenty-five percent of the artists’ sales will go to the Norfolk Chamber Music Festival’s Music Shed Restoration Fund in appreciation to the Festival for providing space for the annual art show. Shown above, Pat Barnett and artist Ruthann Olsson, founder of Norfolk Artists & Friends.

Buzz Peacock and artist Babs Perkins; Janet Marks, a jewelry designer, exhibits her collection.

Sisters Deirdre DiCara and Cara Blazier are some of the “friends” in the organization; Elizabeth Goizueta, an art curator, Roberto Goizueta, a professor of theology at Boston College, and Nina Rosenblum, a producer/director of documentary films at Daedalus Productions, Inc.

Fay O’Meara, one of the exhibit’s artists, with Fran Keeping.

Madeline Falk, known for her animal portraits, branches out with her small landscapes, and talks to Linda Riiska; Tom Curran, who is in the auction and antiques business, admires Laura Lasker’s work.

Anita Holmes and Peter Coffeen share wall space; Tom Hlas and Harvey Kimmelman are on hand to discuss their paintings with guests.

(0) Comments

Enjoy this post? Share it with others.

Posted by Lisa Green on 08/09/14 at 09:23 AM • Permalink

Bidwell House Museum Celebrates Art In The Open

Lisa Green reports from Monterey. Wherever one turned, hats and paintings came into view at The Bidwell House Museum’s annual fundraiser on Saturday, August 2. For a theme, the organization went back in time to when the former Berkshire Summer School of Art, now private property, was part of the Bidwell House Museum property during the height of the Arts and Crafts and Plein Air movements. Taking a cue from its past, Bidwell’s summer art party was an opportunity for guests to observe artists working en plein air. They enjoyed cocktails while taking in the expansive view from the Carrington Hall porch, and the atmosphere was even more enhanced with the jazz music provided by the “Plein Air Trio.” Guests also bid on and took home artistic works. Funds raised will go to support the historic 1750s homestead, all programs, and the 192 acres of grounds. Above, Executive Director Barbara Palmer and volunteer Kristin von Korff welcome guests to the party.

Alice Berke, Carol Landess and Alfred Landess have fun switching nametags; Tim Lovett, owner of Berkshire Property Agents, with Stephen Moore, editor of the Monterey News.

Christine Goldfinger, a member of the Bidwell House Museum board of directors, shows off some of the paintings she worked on during the week; Lindsay Crampton, Shaun Opperman and Amanda Staples.

Tommie Hutto-Blake, Anna Rogovoy, Mark Pascoli and Al Blake.

David Fedo, Academic Vice President Emeritus of Curry College and Susan Fedo were visiting from Boston; Bill Mathiesen of Berkshire Film and Video and Wendy Jensen, a basketmaker, enjoy the view from the porch.

Tristian Goik sketches during the live auction; Eileen Mahoney and Nicole McManmon served on the gala committee.

    A view of the view.

(0) Comments

Enjoy this post? Share it with others.

Posted by Lisa Green on 08/03/14 at 01:07 PM • Permalink

Berkshire Fringe RetroSpectacle Celebrates Tenth Anniversary

Amy Krzanik reports from Pittsfield.The Berkshire Fringe is celebrating its 10th anniversary… how the hell did that happen???” Fringe co-founder Sara Katzoff asked the crowd of supporters at Shire City Sanctuary on August 2nd. My best guess for an answer to that question is a decade of hard work, some very dedicated people, and a great eye for up-and-coming talent. The group’s opening night party, RetroSpectacle, doubled as an introduction to the organization’s new location at the Sanctuary, a former church with soaring ceiling, stained glass and other awe-inspiring details still in place. The venue provided space enough for an open bar sponsored by Domaney’s Liquors, appetizers from Naturally Catering, Madeleine’s, Dottie’s and others, silent auction tables, and a performance area that later transformed itself into a dance floor. Guests were treated to live music from May V. Oskan (solo and with her new band, The Asteroid Project), and short performances from The Wardrobe Ensemble and Under The Table Theatre. The two theater troupes, plus a few more, are performing now through August 18 at the Fringe. Above: David Schecker and Vicki Bonnington are dressed as spectacle-ularly as always.

Jesse Meadows, Emily Greenslade and Helena Middleton of The Wardrobe Ensemble surround Joy Gess, second from left; Fringe supporters Amy Brentano and Amy Hilliard.

Stockbridge Library director Katie O’Neil and attorney Catherine Chester; Allen Dimacali, Tyler Fereira and Sixten West-Woodhaven showed up to support their friend, Fringe co-founder Timothy Ryan Olson.

Gary Carthon, Alexandra Asklipious, Fringe co-founder Sara Katzoff and Ray Jacoub, an attorney and the evening’s DJ.

Morgan Haneman, Heather Haneman and Cassity Warnecke; Enrico Spada, the man behind Pittsfield’s Shakespeare in the Park, with Adam Sugarman and Emma Dweck of Kickwheel Ensemble.

Karen Beaumont and Hilary Somers Deely in her retro spectacles; Dr. Jay Wise, Danielle and Jerry Sargent, and Nicole Maisonneuve.

Sarah Petersiel, Josh Matthews and Matt Chapman of Brooklyn’s Under The Table Theatre pose with Fringe co-founder Timothy Ryan Olson, third from left.

MCLA’s Laura Standley poses with former Fringe interns Vernisa Allen (who came all the way from Florida for the occasion) and Jacquelyn Gianetti; Fringe favorite May V. Oskan performed with her new band, The Asteroid Project, featuring Nina Violet on violin.

(0) Comments

Enjoy this post? Share it with others.

Posted by Amy Krzanik on 08/03/14 at 11:52 AM • Permalink