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A sign of good things to come for the fine folks of Dover is the big white tent that gets pitched on the immaculate lawn of the Biggs Museum of American Art. This tent means two things: summer and party.
This year’s Affair with the Arts, held on a balmy May evening, saw art lovers packed like sardines—very stylish sardines, of course—inside the Dover institution for the pre-dinner auction. Simple black ruled the evening. Anne-Marie Eggleston Koewing was lovely in a black strapless pantsuit—the seriously sparkly hardware around her neck kept drawing my eye all night. Darleen Aragon, manager of the mystical Bell Book & Candle, paired her black gown with a fun shock of pink hair, and raised a glass with friend Helen Downing, who took her black maxi with a side of blingy belt. Add Annie Coons, the good senator’s wife, to the black list—her upswept blond locks and understated makeup was greeted with an enthusiastic chorus of “Annie, you look so lovely” from the crowd gathered around the door. Annie and Chris, along with Jane and Mike Castle, served as honorary chairs for the gala. (And may I say: When the music started from band Deja Groove, table Castle/Coons looked like a very entertaining place to be.)
But a gauntlet was thrown, ladies and gentlemen, from the lovely Theda Blackwelder, who walked—no, who waltzed, glided, floated—in a gauzy, drape-y white confection of a gown that was simply perfection. She is officially the one to beat this summer in the best-dressed department.
Before gala committee members Barbara and Donald Parks (fabulous striped bow tie!) could get to the Caffé Gelato fare set out on the tables in the tent—beautifully turned out, by the way: the simple color palette and fresh, tall florals made for a decidedly French country garden ambience—they posed for photo after photo with friends. A popular duo, no doubt about it.
Speaking of duos: can we talk about Kirsten Lakeman and Hannah Ostroff? I bumped into these two gorgeous young things, who were each there to rep their dads: Bayhealth’s senior veep of government relations Paul Lakeman and Fisher Media Services owner/director Marc Ostroff. “My dad’s on the board of like … everything,” a laughing Kirsten said. “I like being here, meeting his kind of people.” Ditto for Hannah. “My dad is heavily involved in the arts, and now that I’ve gotten older, it’s nice to be at things like this,” she said. Cheers to Paul and Marc: Job well done, daddies. Your girls are divine.