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There aren’t too many events on Gabby’s happening ledger that make science uber-hip, but Wine & Dinosaurs did just that. The late-September event to benefit the Delaware Museum of Natural History forged a love affair between Delaware’s oenophiles and osteologists alike. Moore Brothers Wine Company, Ryan’s Wine & Spirits and The Wine & Spirit Company of Greenville had the winos well taken care of with a delightful mix of reds and whites. Elspeth Kursh, on the other hand, had the dinos. I found Elspeth, the museum’s exhibits manager, sittin’ pretty next to Yangchuanosaurus—in hardcore booties and lush, gorgeous black pants, no less. “Anything that was once alive, or might be alive, or could be alive, all of those things come to me,” she says. “I get really dirty.” In those clothes? “Yes,” she said with a grin. “This is how I dress to work.” What’s a little million-year-old bone dust on your shoes, anyway?
The MD of Mollusks, Dr. Elizabeth K. Shea, was holding it down in her little corner of the museum, talking to guests as they strolled by with heaping plates of delicious pasta from The Greenery Caterers. Although Elizabeth looks chic in her white lab coat, and spends a lot of time with Histioteuthis bonnellii—that would be the “before” version of your Dan Butler-blessed Piccolina Toscana calamari fritta—she sure loves a good party. She and I wistfully gazed around the Hall of Birds room and imagined how fantastic a black-tie gala would be in that space. “It’s something I might have to bring up to some people,” Elizabeth said, laughing.
Speaking of VIPs, I spied DMNH executive director Halsey Spruance with an empty wine glass in hand—tsk tsk!—chatting with Wilmington Trust managing director Bill LaFond, and later, laughing and having a good time with the Superior Court of Delaware Judge Calvin Scott. Halsey looks like a fun, engaged, in-the-know kind of guy, and it seems many agree—there were more than a few bids on auction item No. 30: A lunch date with Halsey and the always lovely Victoria Wyeth at the BBC Tavern and Grill. Value: priceless. It’s possible, though, that no one was having a better time than Proctor Heyman partner Kurt Heyman, event co-chair. Heyman was losing a valiant battle with himself to keep away from the auction tables. “This is going to get me in trouble,” he said laughing. “I just know it.”