Sloan-Kettering Spring Ball Draws Generous Crowd
Posted Thursday May 14, 2009
Smack dab in the middle of an event-cluttered week, The Society of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center’s second annual Spring Ball drew a party-ready group to the Plaza Hotel’s Grand Ballroom Wednesday evening.
And no one was more aware of the difficulty in corralling such numbers than co-chairman Muffie Potter Aston.
“Bodies count — you all came,” said Aston to the crowd, which included Tory Burch, Marjorie Gubelmann, Renée Rockefeller, Shoshanna Gruss, Gigi Mortimer, Grace Hightower and Robert De Niro, Somers Farkas and Jill Zarin of “The Real Housewives of New York City” fame. Some generous donors had even given their tickets back after purchasing them so the organizers could resell them. “This is the only room in New York where you can sell a ticket twice and not get arrested,” joked Aston.
After a dinner of heirloom tomato salad and lamb, Jamie Niven forewent a typical live auction, instead encouraging guests to fill out donation cards on their tables to be collected later on.
“We’re not selling any trips to Rome tonight,” he said.
A few unexpected attendees had the Upper East Side club talking.
“Is that guy a famous rapper?” queried one man eyeing a diamond-stud-sporting LL Cool J (“I’m a guest of Tory’s,” explained the singer.)
More perplexing for some was the evening’s performer, Macy Gray, who nonetheless had everyone on their feet dancing, despite some heckling from her.
“I hear you all have lots of money and you’re a bit snobby,” Gray told the audience, before belting out a series of tunes.