The energy was palpable on Aug. 29 when more than 3,000 guests turned out for the Sprout Fund's seventh annual Hothouse benefit. The roving party found a terrific new location at Bakery Square in East Liberty, Walnut Capital's retail and office complex still under construction on the site of the old Nabisco cookie factory. A giant stage outside and cavernous loft inside kept guests circulating to experience assorted cutting-edge entertainment, from flamenco dancers to the Pittsburgh Accordion Pool Party Orchestra, and fare provided by a host of local restaurants and purveyors. The party attracts a young, hip crowd, starting with event architect Thommy Conroy, who devised the all-white carnival decor. The benefit supports the Sprout Fund's mission to provide seed money for small-scale, innovative and creative community projects, programming and public art.
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