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Film buffs and foodies alike came together at the Miami Beach Botanical Garden to celebrate Spanish filmmaking and culture with the city’s first-ever El Coto de Rioja Paella Parade. Six local chefs cooked their signature interpretations of paella on-site over open flame. Paired with Spain’s iconic dish was a selection of El Coto de Rioja Blanco, Rosado and Crianza wines. The event followed the Miami International Film Festival’s screening of the latest film by acclaimed Spanish director Fernando Leon de Aranoa, Amador.
Charles L. Sprung, formerly at UM and currently Director of the Intensive Care Unit at Jerusalem’s Hadassah Hospital, was a special guest at a private parlor event hosted by Steven Z. and Dr. Judi Levinson. Friends and supporters of the Greater Miami Region of Hadassah attended to hear Professor Sprung speak at his research in sepsis, septic shock and medical ethical issues. Pictured: Steven Z. & Dr. Judi Levinson; Hadassah Greater Miami Region Major Gifts Chair Dr. Judith Mann; Professor Sprung; and Hadassah Greater Miami Region President Dianne Gottlieb.
Emilio Estefan’s The Exile Experience: Journey to Freedom, a collaboration of well-known Cuban writers Carlos Eire, Carlos Alberto Montaner, Mirta Ojito and poet Carlos Pintado, tells the stories of exiles who arrived in South Florida. Estefan, who fled Cuba as a teen with his father, also sought personal testimonials of successful people from different generations of exiles, like the Mas Canosa family, Cristina Saralegui, Benjamin Leon Jr., and George Feldenkreis. A book signing and Q&A hosted by Miami Herald Editor Myriam Marquez took place at Books & Books.
The historic gardens of Vizcaya Museum and Gardens set the stage for the Third Annual Vizcaya Preservation Luncheon, endearingly referred to as "The Hat Luncheon." Guests enjoyed a Black River Caviar reception before their al fresco lunch where Italian fashion house Valentino showed its Spring/Summer 2011 Collection. The Hat Luncheon was introduced by Norma Quintero during her term as President of The Vizcayans. Pictured: Daisy Hoanson and Barbara Hevia.
Musically talented school students, who participate in Music Reach, a collaboration between Arts for Learning, The Greater Miami Youth Symphony and UM’s Frost School of Music, attended The Cleveland Orchestra’s performance of Boléro! at the Arsht Center. For many of the youngsters it was the first professional concert that they have ever attended. More than 50 tickets were donated by The Cleveland Orchestra so that the mentees and their parents could attend free of charge.
Former beauty queen Jaclyn Nesheiwat Stapp kicked off the book tour for her first children’s book, Wacky Jacky: The Story of An Unlikely Beauty Queen at Le Petite Youth Spa in South Florida. Based on Jaclyn’s own childhood experiences, Wacky Jacky’s ultimate message is that “you don’t need a crown to sparkle.” At the event the author participated in a princess-inspired play time that included little girls trying on Jaclyn’s authentic pageant crown and sash. The launch marked the first of many appearances at kid-friendly venues and book stores across the state. A portion of book proceeds will benefit Jaclyn’s nonprofit foundation, CHARM (Children Are Magical). Pictured: Jaclyn with husband Scott Stapp.
The inaugural BankAtlantic Non-Profit Academy Awards Presented by 2-1-1 Broward was celebrated in true academy awards style with 600 corporate executives and members of the non-profit sector in attendance at the Signature Grand in Davie. WSVN-7’s Lynn Martinez emceed, and Robert Danzig, author and former CEO for the Hearst Group was the keynote speaker. Winners were announced in six award categories with each receiving $1,000 for their nonprofit and $500 going to each of the other nominees. Winners were: Women in Distress of Broward County, Inc.; Gilda’s Club South Florida; Broward College Foundation; The Pantry of Broward, Inc.; Susan M. Widmayer, Ph.D. of Children’s Diagnostic and Treatment Center, Inc.; and Steve Pattison, Chair of ARC Broward. Light of the World Clinic was awarded The Community Choice Award. Pictured: Gregory A. Haile, Berger Singerman; Marcia Barry-Smith, BankAtlantic; Lynn Martinez, WSVN; Sheila Smith, 2-1-1 Broward and Jarett Levan, CEO of BankAtlantic.
Collins Park in Miami Beach was the site for Florida Grand Opera’s third annual Opera in the Park concert enjoyed by over 250 people. Opera newcomers and connoisseurs alike came together with their families (dogs included) to listen to arias from FGO’s upcoming performances of Don Giovanni, one of the world’s most beloved operas, and the newly-commissioned Cyrano. Opera in the Park is made possible by the City of Miami Beach and Citizens Interested in Arts.
NFL’er Asante Samuels of the Philadelphia Eagles, hosted an event at Club Play to launch The Bring it Home Single Moms Foundation. Presented by Miss Geico World Championship Race Team, the event raised funds and awareness for the non-profit whose mission is to provide hard working, low income single mothers with a home to restore each woman’s pride optimism and stability. The homes will be both energy and cost efficient, meeting the Green Standard and being affordable. Pictured: Asante Samuels and his fiancée.
The American Cancer Society honored twelve women at its elegant luncheon and fashion show, The Inner Circle of Twelve, at the Indian Creek Country Club. Celebrity designer Roberto De Villacis presented his Spring 2011 Collection at the event, which raised over $100,000 in the fight against cancer. Recognized for their philanthropic commitment to our community, their leadership, volunteerism, and dedication to the American Cancer Society’s mission were (pictured): Marisa Toccin, Phillis Oeters, Connie Russell, Maria Browne, Tracy Wilson Mourning, Irene Korge, Bonnie Verbitsky, Claudia Puig, Linda Levy Goldberg, Ramona Toppino Busot, Nicole Lozano, and Diane Sepler.