Entering the lush gardens of one of Savannah’s hidden treasures, I am on the hunt for my hostess with the best name in the all the kingdom- Guieneverre Cutlip, when I find RLC Principal Carolyn Hannaford and their finance manager Kim Place signing in yet another local treasure, Stratton Leopold and his Chief Financial Officer Thomas J. Kilmartin.
Sporting his traditional khaki pants, light blue button up shirt and navy blue blazer, Stratton recounts last night’s presentation at the Carter Center where he was invited to a presentation of a film exhibit that chronicles the beginning of the film era in Georgia back in 1973. How cool is that our local Benedictine Military School (BC) boy is being recognized for doing what he does best – making movies!
With what has to be 400 supporters—like United Way’s queen bee Deb Thompson—arriving at the same time as Senior Citizen’s sovereign leader Patti Lyons, I get torn between taking photos of best dressed realtors Jeff Clark and Gilberto Rojas, good looking couple Erin Garletts and Scott Edwards then pause for a long chat with North Dakota transplant Beth Williams.
Standing in at 6-feel tall without heels, Beth tells me about her love of our weather, people and her husband Patrick, a Savannah Christian graduate whom she meet when they both lived in Atlanta. While I may not ever visit her at Pooler Plastic Surgery, I hope to see my favorite female of the night out on the town this summer!
After Chris Sweat and I snap hundreds of pics in the greenest garden south of River Street, we move into the covered portico and pause for a chat with real estate mogul Bill Miltiades and a gorgeous brunette who just happens to be Chiriya Moore’s niece! Stoked to see a family member of my favorite Thai food eatery, I snap a selfie with Cathariya Lapma before getting called over to click a pic of the fabulous Sally and Steve Greenberg.
The Tutoring Center’s Program Coordinator hints of a world traveling expedition, but I can’t quiz her because it’s show time! Ron takes the mic to welcome his guests, introduce Chatham Academy principal Carolyn Hannaford—who has literally and physically been there since the doors opened 40 years ago—before emcee Andrew Davis takes over the mike.
Lucky for me, I am near the back and just happen to see Savannah Morning New’s Best Chef Kirk Blaine mosey by me with a mound of smoked duck and salmon, and a platter of bourbon glazed baby back ribs. I am also stoked to learn Kirk is flexing his culinary capabilities by launching the Grand View at Hotel Tybee—a 350 person venue with the panoramic view of the Pier, the beach and a full moon rising over the Atlantic Ocean. We are going to need three Kirk Blaine’s to handle Castaway’s, the Howlin’ Hound, the Grand View and his catering company, but I have a feeling this BC boy will be just fine.
After posing with Kirk, Savannah Police Department’s Sgt. Ryan E. Bevil and Cpl. Warren Blauth, I take a final lap around and manage to photograph Ron Wilson with presenting sponsor, Jeff Kole, chat with Ye Ole Tobacco Shop’s Phil Hunter about their three generations selling everything from Padron to San Christobal cigars and quiz Molly Hayden on all her photography gigs.
Celebrating 40 years of empowering students with learning disabilities, RLC Director of Development Guieneverre tells me exactly what she did last year.
“We help break down learning barriers, heighten public awareness of these struggles and help students reach their maximum potential educationally, emotionally and socially.”
With four programs for children and adults struggling with learning disabilities, literacy, attention deficit disorders or other academic issues, I have a special place in my heart for Savannah’s oldest learning institution and their quest for literacy – and for throwing the baddest outdoor soiree with dudes sporting bowties, sipping Southern spirits and snacking on some Chef Blaine cuisine!
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