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Three retired greyhounds, a pit bull, a cat and a Pfizer division president were the honorees at Bide-A-Wee's Have a Heart gala dinner dance at the Pierre. Ashley the cat (a no-show because her owner, Karen Flamenhalf, was ill) was honored for visiting local nursing homes. Other honorees Rue Rue, Atlas and Samantha were rescued from the racetrack by Bide-A-Wee, a foundation that runs animal adoption centers. Suzy, an abandoned pooch, proved that even pit bulls can be charming when they're properly fed. And Brian Barrett, president of Pfizer Animal Health, was honored with a Baccarat crystal decanter for his donations of funding and animal medicines.
Bide-A-Wee gala chairwoman Elizabeth Cooke presided over the evening's proceedings, which also included special guests Tony Randall and Metropolitan opera soprano Anna Moffo Sarnoff. Floralia provided lovely heart-shaped centerpieces, placing a visual reminder of the events' theme right on the table. Members of the Tom Costello Orchestra performed in the pre-dinner cocktail area, and provided dance music following dinner.
The Pierre set aside an empty room to house the four-legged honorees if they became too overwhelmed, but all were very well-behaved. Their rewards: beef-tips from the waiters after dinner.