Multiple Sclerosis Society
So, what was the first clue that this, "The 2003 Dinner of Champions," was quite the celebration? Perhaps it was the huge crowd, 1,400 more or less, of snappily attired folks who came to the hoopla thrown by the Maryland Chapter of the National Multiple Sclerosis Society. Or maybe it was the fantastical looking Marriott Waterfront Hotel ballroom. Each of the 140 dining tables sported a huge centerpiece, a tree-sized arrangement of tropical flowers sitting above a glass globe with live goldfish swimming around inside.
Or, could it be that large check, $1,000,000 raised by the event, presented to the MS folks?
Whatever the reason, there was plenty of celebrating.
Among those doing just that: Mark Tarzwell and Rick Matthai, event co-chairmen; Tom Gandolfi Sr., event honoree; Charlie Pflug and Clarence Oliver, event committee members; Steve Zentz, National Multiple Sclerosis Society, Maryland Chapter board chairman; George Brust, Dr. Ken Johnson, J.R. Paterakis, and John Ryder, board members; Rick Smith, MS Society, Maryland Chapter president / CEO; retired Air Force Gen. Mike Dugan, National Multiple Sclerosis Society CEO; Dave Thomas, Superior Food Brokers owner; Dick McCready, Advantage Sales and Marketing chairman / CEO; Don Walker, D.P.I. Mid-Atlantic director of perishables; Sherry Dodson, GBMC pathology department customer service specialist; Tom Gargon, Acosta Sales and Marketing senior vice president / general manager; Jim O'Brien, D.L. Mathews 7 chief operating officer; Linda Kelly, Fuji Foods sales manager; Bob Halbert, RK&K; Engineers partner; Debbie Potter, Debbie Clutts, Shelley Rallo, Lisa Charity-Jones and Amy Bateman, community volunteers; Charles Young, Young's Tax Service owner; Tom Reitz, Vertis senior account executive; Kathy Costello, International Organization of MS Nurses president; Lakisa Taylor, Giant Food promotions project coordinator; Lisa Thompson, Pfizer senior specialty representative, and Julie McArthur, Johns Hopkins University vaccine research clinical trials nurse practitioner.
Ed Block Courage Award Foundation
The Baltimore Convention Center ballroom was chock-full of warm fuzzies. Big, tall, warm fuzzies. In the shape of some 30 NFL players being honored as the recipients this year at the Ed Block Courage Award Foundation's annual dinner.
Many of the players were capping off two days of events in Baltimore. The day before, many of them spent the day at the St. Vincent Center's Ravens Courage House for abused children.
"We played football with the kids," said Denver Broncos linebacker Keith Burns, "It was so much fun, we didn't want to leave."
Now, the fun involved getting together with 2,100 other Ed Block friends and supporters to celebrate the foundation's 25th anniversary, and to pay tribute to the late Johnny Unitas.
Among those in the crowd: Mary Ann Peacock and G.G. Hyle, event co-chairs; Toni Linhart, John Rusinko, Mary Rode, Fr. Ray Chase, Ellen Torres, Wayne Gruehn and Sam V. Lamantia, event committee members; Sam Lamantia, Ed Block Courage Award Foundation founder / chairman; Frank Culotta, Scott Lindsay, Dave Ferraro, Art Donovan, Dick Szymanski, Tom Matte and Jim Mutscheller, Foundation board members; Joe Knight, event emcee; Sonny Jurgensen, Joe Ehrmann, Earl Morrall, Roman Gabriel, Joe Capp, John Mackey and Bruce Laird, former NFL players; Kent Falb, Professional Football Athletic Trainers Society executive assistant; Frank Neff, Professional Marketing Products president; Ron Black, Staten Island, N. Y., U.S. Postal Service letter carrier; Steve Goff, Mariner's Landing Restaurant owner; Drew Lebowitz, Change Merchants owner; Joe Hikel, Shelter Systems vice president; John Piet, ImageLine computer specialist; Sarah Sheridan, full-time mom; Bishop Robinson, Affiliated Computer Services senior consultant; John Ziemann, Marching Ravens Band president; Sandy, Chad and John Unitas Jr., wife and sons of the late Johnny Unitas; John Lopez, former Baltimore Colts head trainer, and Craig Howard, Baltimore-based wine and spirits consultant.
The event raised more than $400,000 for The Ed Block Courage Award Foundation.
April 6: "Fashion Fever." Benefits Mount Washington Pediatric Hospital. Wine, brunch drinks, buffet brunch, Vasarri fashion show, shopping bazaar. Grey Rock Mansion, 400 Grey Rock Road, Owings Mills. 11:30 a.m. Tickets $60, in advance and at door. Call 410-578-5040.
April 8: "Fight For A Cure." Benefits Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. Open bar, hors d'oeuvres, seated dinner, six professional boxing matches. Wyndham Hotel Inner Harbor, 101 W. Fayette St. 6 p.m. Tickets $175. Call 410-576-8343.
April 8: "CancerCure Spring Concert & Reception." Benefits Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Wine, hors d'oeuvres, "meet the artist" reception, concert by Little River Band and Laura Branigan. Meyerhoff Symphony Hall, 1212 Cathedral St. 6 p.m. reception, 7:30 concert. Tickets $1,250 to $5,000 for groups of 10, 20 or 40. $35-$75 concert only. Call 410-825-2500, Ext. 21.
April 10: "Double Feature -- 20th Anniversary Party." Benefits Balti-more Chamber Orchestra. Open bar, heavy hors d'oeuvres, live music, preview Market shops and vendors, live orchestra accompaniment of silent films One Week and The Immigrant. Belvedere Square Market, York Road and Belvedere Avenue. 5:45 p.m. Tickets $150. Call 410-426-0157.
April 11: "Black & White Ball." Benefits Annapolis Symphony Or-chestra. Cocktail hour open bar, hors d'oeuvres, seated dinner with cash bar, fashion show, live music, dancing. Loews Annapolis Hotel, 126 West St., Annapolis. 7 p.m. Tickets $125. Call 410-263-0907.
April 12: "The Perfect Setting." Benefits Maryland Lupus Founda-tion. Black tie. Open bar, hors d'oeuvres, buffet dinner, live music, dancing, view table settings created by local notables. Scottish Rite Temple, 3800 N. Charles St. 7 p.m. Tickets $250. Call 410-337-9000.
April 12: "14th Annual Art Blooms Opening Night Party." Benefits Walters Art Museum Women's Com-mittee. Black tie. Open bar, hors d'oeuvres, buffet dinner, live music, view flower arrangements inspired by museum's 19th century collection. Walters Art Museum, 600 N. Charles St. 7 p.m. Tickets $150. Call 410-547-9000, Ext. 305.
If you'd like to have your social event considered for coverage on the Maryland Scene page, please fax the information at least three weeks in advance to 410-675-3451, or call 410-332-6520, or mail it to Party Page at The Sun, 501 N. Calvert St., Baltimore, MD 21278.