A few hours of pampering and pleasantries - that's tough to turn down.
A Friday evening spent in the company of women enjoying each other and amenities made available to them is an evening well spent in my book, so off to the second-annual Girls' Night Out I went without hesitation, my daughter Sarah in tow.
This summer fundraiser was sponsored by the American Red Cross Jefferson County Chapter and held Aug. 17 at the Brandywine Inn in rural Toronto. The hosts were Tricia and Jefferson County Commissioner Dave Maple, owners of the inn that opened in 2006 and originally was the family home where Tricia, a chapter board member, resided with her siblings and parents, the late Helen and Don Damewood.
Clockwise, from left, Elizabeth Tabor and Patti Stimpak get a hand massage from Mary Kay
Cosmetics reps Stacy Gilson and Janet Mayle.
Though rain had dominated much of the day, the sky cleared and sun shone for the event where patrons helped themselves to a buffet of finger foods, including these great cucumber and dill mixtures on baguette slices. I got the recipe from Tricia last year, but sadly cannot duplicate them. Some things just naturally taste better when someone else fixes them!
In addition to fine food and drink, the ladies were treated to music by Mark Miller and Chuck Lucas; massages by George Komar and Cindy Layman of Ohio Valley Massage Associates; pretty jewelry and nail polishing by Tracie Blevins of A Nail's Charm; and moisturizing hand treatments by Mary Kay Cosmetics reps Janet Mayle and Stacy Gilson.
There also was an auction of beautiful designer purses, their contents containing surprise gifts - all of it made possible by generous donors. As I checked them all out, it occurred to me that I can't remember ever not lugging a purse around. There's a lot of our critical mass stuff in there that we gals tote with us.
Everyone got a goodie bag not to mention a pretty pink tie-dyed T-shirt. Nice!
Celebrity waiters donned tuxedo T-shirts and made the evening all the more pleasant serving beverages and providing valet parking. They were Dave Maple, Jim Conrad, Joe Loizzo, Ken Perkins, J.M. Conrad, Brian Applegarth, John Cucarese and Paul Brandt.
The evening was occasion to touch base with many people I always enjoy seeing, including my office mom, former community editor Marian Houser. Hard to believe she's been retired for two years. Yikes! Where did that time go?
The evening was a win-win in the estimation of Kathy Musso, executive director of the American Red Cross Jefferson County Chapter.
It was a fun evening, and it helped raise money to benefit the many things done by the Red Cross such as providing emergency assistance to disaster victims including clothing, food, and temporary shelter; assisting active duty Armed Forces personnel and their local family members during a family emergency; offering CPR, first aid, water safety and other workplace and community training and disaster preparedness classes; and collecting blood products.