The Most Fantastic Party I didn’t Attend, but wish I had – Decor Delight

The Most Fantastic Party I didn’t Attend, but wish I had

Medical Guardian (1818 Market Street  Suite 1200, Philadelphia, PA 19103) held their annual holiday party earlier this month at VIE in Philadelphia. Geoff Gross, Founder & CEO at Medical Guardian hosted friends, family and employees of the life saving Medical Alert System which serves seniors nationwide. I was supposed to attend, but something came up and I missed it. After attending in the past and knowing that Valerie Sings GrossVal Sings Events was producing the event, I knew it’d be a party we all needed to see

Valerie Sings Gross and Geoff Gross

Santa’s Workshop was the theme

Santa was there

Cescaphe always has one of the most delicious spreads chock full of seafood and see food

Gorgeous champagne display as you walk into the lobby


Valerie Sings Gross

A wall of employees photos from past parties

Val Sings Events did a sweet job on this event.
Happy Happy Holidays, what a wonderful holiday season. I for one am not bothered when the commericals, and the music and the holiday cheer starts in November because when December 26 rolls around I’m already nostalgic for it.


Maria Papadakis and Chris Konopka Get Married

OMG has it been a week already since my girl Maria Papadakis got married to the guy she’s been looking for all her life, Chris Konopka, it has. What an amazing wedding; and very intimate with only 65 people invited. What an honor to witness their special day, and to re-connect with old mutual friends and make a few new ones.

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Welcome to Naples!
Maria and Christopher get married weekend
Mike and I arrived at our hotel, Inn of Naples, on Thursday and was greeted at the desk with two
lovely gift bags from the intended couple. The bag included personalized M&M’s with the initials of Chris and Maria (they were so good I ate Mike’s too), gifts, snacks, and towels for the beach party.

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Come enjoy a beautiful dinner with us outside on the bay into the Gulf to get our wedding weekend started Thursday night!




Friday – Cocktails, Ceremony, & Reception at The Ritz-Carlton Naples Florida

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Dress was beach chic and well Chris’ uncle wins


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Folks came from all over, even from Dubai and as close as Miami, where Michael Lahoud, who met Chris Konopka when they both played for the Phila Union 2012 – 2013 travelled from. He now plays on the Miami team; Director/Producer Clayton Hansler traveled from Toronto, where Chris played for Toronto FC for a few years.

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The Konopka FamilyMarried Married

Antonis Papadourakis and Grigorios Papadourakis HD1_0556 (Custom) HD1_0592 (Custom) HD1_0621 (Custom)

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John and Rachel Paz

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after the ceremony and cocktail party we headed to that cute little event space on the beach, that looks like a houseMarried

For dinnerMarried

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Eliana Papadakis and Maria Konopka HD1_0743 (Custom) Married HD1_0749 (Custom) HD1_0751 (Custom)
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Mike Toub is learning to dance, thanks Jenna E. Moore, Hair Stylist at Moore is More

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Marisa Magnatta, Maria and Vasiliki TsourisHD1_0827 (Custom)

Then the groom got up to serenade his bride, and he’s a darn good singer. Sometimes he joins his brother – Ned Ryerson (r) and his band The Groundhogs at the gigs they play in South Jersey. Chris Konopka was on stage with their wedding band  Land Shark Band and Ned Ryerson on singing and on lead guitar. That’s Chris & Ned’s dad on keyboard and mom on tamburine


Posted by Gary Roland on Saturday, January 21, 2017

OMG so glad someone had a clip of this, I accidentally deleted mine grabbing the turbulence vids on Monday and ran out of phone space & deleted previous videos including this clip of Chris’ rapping.


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Saturday – Brunch, Brews, & Beach – Pelican Bay Pool & Beach Married Married
Sunday Chris and Maria hosted 11 of us, who were still in town, on a tour of the Everglades, and Wooten’s Animal Sanctuary

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Penny from Eviama Spa in Midtown Village


So fun

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Congrats Mr. and Mrs. Chris and Maria Konopka.
(this last photo was taken by their photographer)




CCD Celebrates 25 Years Making Philly Beautiful

CCD Celebrates 25 Years Making Philly Beautiful

Congratulations Center City District on your 25th Anniversary, and every day for a job well done.

On May 5, 2016, an anniversary celebration was held at Dilworth Park for the Center City District and Central Philadelphia Development Corporation. The event was held on a gorgeous spring evening, under a gigantic tent in the shadow of the beloved City Hall.

The check in, and coat check area. I just wanted to show the nice set up with the tables and coat check. I love that they even included trees and flowers to enhance the area.

Impressive set up with check in tables and coat check. I love that they even included trees and flowers to enhance the area (great signage by Replica Creative too)


Gorgeous tent and decor for the 25th Anniversary Gala. Brulee Catering served a delicious dinner starting with a watermelon salad. Light Action produced the lighting, and lighting is everything. Gala Clothes set the tables.


During the cocktail hour guests could peruse the extensive silent auction, which featured experiences, dinner and this cool Bacon Brothers Signed Guitar w/CDs.


Plus Connor Barwin donated a signed jersey. Earlier in my evening I saw him at the Fathers Day Gary Papa Run (June 19) Eagles Celebrity Bartending gig at Brent Celek’s eatery Prime Stache in Old City.



Jeff Guaracino, President & CEO of Welcome America Inc. and Nicole Cashman, President & CEO, Cashman & Associates (Congrats Nicole as her firm was announced as one of the companies handing a DNC party. She’s doing the media party.)


Senator Anthony H. Williams, City Councilwomen Helen Gym, and Congressman Brendan Boyle


Carla Showell-Lee, SEPTA’s Director of Media Relations and Former Mayor Rev Wilson Goode


Beck Davis, ‎Customer Service Director at Center City District and David Wagaman, Owner Of Capriccio At Cafe Cret and Logan Cafe in Sister’s City. Every Thursday there are wine pairings 5PM to 8PM at Sisters Cities Park and Logan Cafe (BTW you can rent Logan Cafe out for parties, they do catering.)

For complete updates, please go to www.SisterCitiesPark.org


Joseph Coradino, Chief Executive Officer of PREIT, Former Mayor John Street, Joseph H. Jacovini, Dilworth Paxson LLP, Anne Kelly King, Chief of Staff for Councilman Mark Squilla, Romy Diaz, Jr. Vice President of Governmental and External Affairs at PECO and Councilman Mark Squilla


Former Gov Ed Rendell (currently busy as Chair of the DNC2016 Host Committee) with Paul Levy, Executive Director of CCD. Both men have worked tirelessly on many projects to make Philly not only beautiful, but functional and fun. The projects created a foundation for many of the unique projects that are executed in present time like the Rail Park. Missing from the party, but very much responsible for executing one of the most anticipated act of the Center City District, was Mayor Michael  Nutter, who partnered with the Gov and CCD to created Dilworth Park.


Michael Garden, board of Friends of the Rail Park (1 year annivesary party for Friends of the Rail Park on June 9 #BAMFest: A Fundraiser for Friends of the Rail Park at Brick and Mortar) and Kate Raines (wedding photographer https://plate3.wordpress.com/)


Newly elected State Representative in the 202nd legislative district Jared Solomon (in my former life as a paralegal, Jared and I both worked at Kohn, Swift & Graf ) and Laura Burkhardt, Publisher of Where Magazine.


Angela McCafferty, ‎Chief Operations Officer – ‎Bittenbender Construction, LP, Emily Bittenbender, ‎Managing Partner at Bittenbender Construction, LP – ‎Bittenbender Construction, LP (Bittnebender is working on Love Park, which should be done in 2017, can’t wait) , Christine Hough Langan, Langan Engineering & Environmental Services


Tara Alexander, and Curtis Alexander, President at Urban Jungle. His business is all about creating sustainable green urban environments is the driving force nurturing Urban Jungle.


The Philadelphia Gay Men’s Chorus opened up the gala


as emcee Ukee Washington, CBSPhilly, danced along to the music, before started the evenings program.


Paul Levy told the story of how Center City District came about when Ron Rubin wondered why the street was so dirty outside of the Bellevue Hotel, which he owned. Rubin was trying to lure retailers to his newly required hotel, and with the help of Mayor Wilson Goode in 1989, he was able to find a temporary solution. Then they turned to Paul Levy. PhillyMag wrote an excellent article on it in 2013


Julie Coker Graham is the President and CEO of the Philadelphia Convention & Visitors Bureau (PHLCVB) is a real success story. Working at Hyatt Hotels for 21 years before heading over to the PHLCVB, first as Senior Vice President, Convention Division then Executive Vice President and now sitting at the head of the table. She was running in from a DNC2016 Meeting.


The CCD wants you to join them every Wednesday from 5-7pm, June 1 – September 28 for $5 cocktails, $4 wine, $3 beer and half-priced appetizers* for Center City Sips. check out their app here

CCD Mayor Kenney



LightAction Production created a magical evening. They also had a light show projecting on City Hall to the delight of people walking and driving by City Hall as the party continued under the grand, see through tent.

Congratulations Center City District on your 25th Anniversary, and every day for a job well done.



Sabrina Tamburino Thorne’s Adorable Baby Christening Party

Sabrina Tamburino Thorne‘s Adorable Baby Christening Party for her and husband Steve Thorne‘s son Savino (named after his maternal grandfather).  PhillyChitChat readers first met Sabrina Tamburino Thorne about a year into the start of the blog. She and Steve had been dating for a year or so after meeting at socialite Dana Spain’s annual Halloween party.

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We chronicled her life through fabulous birthday parties, her engagement party, we were there at her bacherlorette party, the wedding shower,

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the wedding, many parties, Halloween, birthday , just for the heck of it get togethers and cocktails at Rouge. Sunday we gathered for the Baptism of their beloved son Savino Nico Thorne (you’ll recall his fun baby shower)Tamburino_Thorne

Father Dennis Gill performs the Ephphetha or Prayer over the Ears and Mouth to Savino as Steve and Sabrina look on along with the Godmothers’ Monica Del Borrello and Kelly Jones, friends with Sabrina for over 30 years.Tamburino_Thorne

Sabrina, Steve and Savino Thorne with Carol Tamburino  Philly Baby Party

Kelly Jones with her sons with husband Julius Jones and her mom Sharon Coia, who is bff’s with Carol Tamburino

Philly Baby Party

We headed over to The Logan hotel, where the baptism party was being held. The room was so adorable and the decorator, Carol Tamburino , who worked tirelessly before the Church service. This gal needs to go into business. She always throws a good party.Philly Baby Party Savino Tamburino Thorne

I love this shot, everyone is trying to get his attention but he knows it’s the guy with the big camera that gets the best shotPhilly Baby Party Philly Baby Party

Julie Thorne and fiance Ross GuendelsbergerPhilly Baby Party Sabrina Tamburino_Carol Tamburino

Congrats Savino, see you at Church.Logan Hotel Philly Baby Party

Sabrina Tamburino

Carol Tamburino with her favorite Isgro’s Canollis

Isgros cake

Isgro made the cross cake too. Which reminds me yesterday, I wrote about my friends Brianna and Josh Alcorn baby shower (Josh popped the question to Brianna in line at Isgo’s on Christmas Eve.) Their party was decorated by Terrain, as well as grandmom Lisa Gaudio – Happy Birthday to her. Check out their party photos.