Never had I been inside the vast cavernous space of Bobby McKey’s Dueling Piano Bar in the National Harbor. I’d been by, but never stepped a toe in (albeit I’d been hearing about these outrageous Friday nights for years on end).Â Finally, this past Friday, I had a real reason to enter and to stay.Â Chris4Life Colon Cancer Foundation held its launch and dedication of the Erica Paul Memorial Fund and the turnout was outstanding.Â So outstanding that it was truly standing room only and I was starting to feel claustrophobic about midway through the evening.Â The fund, in honor of the 29 year old energetic and giving beauty who left us earlier this year (“I want to be famous”, she had once declared) was founded in order to support colon cancer patients under the age of 50, thereby validating that this disease is not an old man’s disease. In fact, Michael Sapienza, Executive Director/Chairman/Founder of the foundation shared with us from the microphone that the rates for those under the age of 50 has increased by 40%.
The group had the entire top level, its own bar and space for an extravagant silent auction, a step and repeat with a huge poster featuring Erica’s infectious smile (which later was sold to a bidder for a whopping $2,000), and drinks on the menu like Erica’s Sweet Tea (I’d had 2 and believe me, that stuff can do its duty) and the Blue Hope.Â Proceeds upstairs went to the fund and downstairs, in the beginning of the night, and while the dueling pianists/comedians/singers took to the stage, the special drinks went to the charity, but later, after I’d departed, all food and drinks of the entire place went to the Erica Paul Fund.Â This is all thanks to Alison Tunnell Hansan, who owns Bobby McKey’s, is a new Board Member of Chris4Life and was a close friend of Erica.Â From the raffle tickets (prizes were $500 Visa gift cards), silent auction, F&B proceeds and pure donations, I had heard Chris4Life raised in the ball park of $32,000.
Thanks to all who came out and took part in the bright pink (Erica’s favorite color) Fabulous event and especially to the staff of Bobby McKey’s and to Alison Hansan.
Don’t forget to save the date for October 26th for the Blue Hope Bash, the Chris4Life Inaugural Gala to be held at the historic Decatur House.
Pamela Lynne Sorensen is the founder of Pamela’s Punch, a leading source of information for the “who, what, when, and where” of Washington, DC’s elite social, professional, and philanthropic scene, which she founded in November of 2006. In 2012 she launched Pacific Punch, based in Los Angeles. Pamela comes from an extensive background in sales and business development from a variety of industries, has been involved with charities and fundraising for a number of years and holds several Board and leadership positions. She currently resides in Arlington, Virginia and when she’s not out on the town, she’s reading or writing while sipping fine wine, or traveling the country and the world ISO adventures, beauty, fun, food, style, libations, music, and the good life. Follow her on Twitter at @pamelaspunch.