More than 700 patrons braved snow and ice to attend Thursday's 2014 Red CARpet Charity Preview Gala at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center for a South Beach-style themed party. The private event, which kicked off the 2014 Pittsburgh International Auto Show, supported Austin's Playroom Project, an initiative of the Mario Lemieux Foundation.
Mario and Nathalie Lemieux, serving as honorary chairs, cut the ribbon to signal the start to the festivities, which included cocktails and dancing. Foundation president Tom Grealish joined Greater Pittsburgh Automobile Dealers Association CEO John Putzier and president Dennis Balier, as well as board members, car dealers and car enthusiasts, in kicking off the auto show.
"So many people worked hard to make this night happen," said Mr. Putzier.
Patrons enjoyed two bands, delicious South Beach finger foods such as corn salsa and conch salad, and a variety of auction items that ranged from autographed Pittsburgh sports memorabilia to fur coats and jewelry. "Anything that we can do to help the lives of children is something worth being involved in," said Lea Guarino of Louis Anthony Jewelry.
Seen strolling through the car show were Day Automotive's Debbie Flaherty, Bruce Kaplan and his daughter Lindsey Thomas, who looked lovely in a white and black lace dress, Rob and Olivia Cochran, Wes Lyons and Amber Greene, Kelvin and Regina Beachum, Bob and Lisa Pompeani, Blair Johnson and Deb Rice-Johnson, Randy and Heather Hillier, Bud Green, Jay and Alicia Caufield, Pierre Larouche and Sally Wiggin.