Have you heard the secret? Le Dîner en Blanc is coming to Wilmington! This thrilling annual event started in Paris nearly 34 years ago when François Pasquier invited his friends to an elegant outdoor dinner at which everyone wears white so they can easily spot each other. What was then just a special outing between friends has now turned into an international annual celebration in more than 150 cities.
In its third year in Delaware, the secretive, thrilling Le Dîner en Blanc event returns to Wilmington on September 25. As the hosts of this classy, private event and the co-owners of RESH Salon and Spa in Newark, Sherrell and Michael Flagg encourage locals to grab tables and flowers and dress in all white for a French-inspired night of sophistication and delicious dishes.
“[Le Dîner en Blanc] happens in like 150 cities across the world. It’s always a secret location, full of friends that haven’t met yet, food, fine wine, champagne and togetherness,” says Michael. “We saw Philly’s event, which is one of the biggest ones in the United States, so we requested to have one here in Wilmington, too. But they were reluctant at first because Philly is only 26 miles away, but we told them that Philadelphia isn’t Delaware. So, we finally convinced them to let us have it in Wilmington. That was three years ago. This is our third campaign coming up.”
“Michael saw Philly’s event and he was like ‘Our city needs this. We need something like this to bring the people together and to bring communities together,’” adds his wife, Sherrell.
Not only does this event bring people from all over Delaware together, but it does so for those outside of the state as well, with some guests coming from as far as North Carolina and Canada.
Each year, the event takes place at a different spot around Wilmington, and it remains a secret until the very last second. Guests even get shuttled to and from the location to ensure it remains a secret.
“The decorum is all white, our guests can add in metallics, but everything must be white for the most part,” Sherrell says. “You can bring some color in through the flowers you may bring to decorate your table, but that’s the only way that color can pop into the event.”
Each guest must bring their own table, white chairs, a white tablecloth, a picnic basket (guests can purchase a catered picnic basket for pickup onsite if preferred) and champagne or wine.
“This year’s theme is the roaring ‘20s,” she adds. “So, we picked the roaring ‘20s because it came about after the Spanish flu pandemic. We figured that this was a great time to tie that into this year’s Le Dîner en Blanc Wilmington because we’re hopefully on the end of this pandemic, but it’s relatable to that time and the climate that we’re in right now.”
Tickets sales occur in three stages. Phase one opens for members from the previous year, while phase two opens for new members referred by phase one attendants, and phase three opens for those who sign up to be on the waiting list. Phase three is currently open.
To sign up for a spot at this year’s Le Dîner en Blanc, visit the event’s website.