A Sunny, Spring Look for Sloan-Kettering

April 30, 2002, 12:00 AM EDT

Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center's Awards for Excellence benefit The Plaza Hotel Monday, 04.22.02, 6 PM onward
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Even though it was raining outside, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center's annual Awards for Excellence benefit in the Plaza Hotel's grand ballroom had a sunny, springtime look. Event coordinator Susan Bell of Susan Bell Special Events created a “Spring in New York"-themed atmosphere for the evening with brightly colored flowers and tablecloths and low, warm, red lighting by Frost Lighting, which evoked a garden-style gathering suited to dancing and socializing under the ballroom's two grand chandeliers.

The society's executive director, Barbara McLaughlin, wanted this year's event to reflect a sense of giving back to the community. So the live spring daffodils displayed on every table in simple combinations by Ron Wendt Design were later donated to the New York Restoration Project, Bette Midler's organization that restores public parks, which will replant them around New York.

Black-tie-clad guests sipped cocktails on the mezzanine before entering the ballroom for the elegant seated dinner. The evening's honored guests received silver engraved award trays designed by Asprey & Garrard. Live music from Bob Hardwick Sound put the final touches onto the atmosphere.

The Plaza's chefs prepared a spring lamb entr?e for dinner, followed by little chocolate flowerpots filled with colored sorbets for dessert. Guests also took home bottles of perfume donated by the fashion house Chanel. The event grossed a total of $750,000, which will go to the cancer center's patient care, research, and education program.

--Paul Ohan

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