They came From Hollywood to Paradise. Well, more like the North Side of Pittsburgh, where the Mattress Factory's uber-hip Urban Garden Party was held Friday evening. Inside and out, it was a mob scene in the best sense of the word, with close to 1,000 guests arriving in waves for first-rate people-watching. The Hollywood theme brought out the best in those inclined to cooperate with such things. It started with party chairs Dr. Michael White and Rick LeBeau, channeling Groucho pretty convincingly. A bevy of Audrey Hepburns, some gorgeous drag queens and numerous starlets and swashbucklers congregated in the gardens and under a big top.
Earlier, Bossa Nova and All in Good Taste's Bob Sendall hosted the VIP party, with trays of his signature Toffee Taboo being passed along with lamb pizza and other delicacies. Stiltwalker and dancer extraordinaire Erin Carey towered above the crowd that was awash in specialty martinis being served by nightlife entrepreneur Robin Fernandez. Mattress Factory co-directors Barbara Luderowski and Michael Olijnyk mingled with longtime supporters and new friends while Dr. Zoot delivered the jive. Rick and Laurie Johnson, Pam and Ken McCrory, Nachum Golan and Steve Hough, newly engaged Anuj Dhanda and Anne Nemer, Hilary Robinson, Richard Parsakian, Enrico and Federica Dallavecchia, Clyde Jones and best-dressed Becca Nation (she crocheted her flower-trimmed gown!) migrated to the gardens once the doors opened, where many local eateries and purveyors generously donated fare.
Belly dancers, snake charmers, iPad DJs AndrewAndrew and so much more were there, too. Which is why this top-rated bash sells out year after year; it's that much fun.