"Keep your pot smoking to the outside so you don't smoke up the room," intoned Alley Theatre board president Jesse Marion as he addressed the costumed crowd at Silver Street Studios. "And remember, you have to share."
And so the rocking Alley gala, typically something of an off-the-wall, rip-roaring good time, kicked off with a bang. The pot reference might have been rhetorical but the look and feel of the night echoed the musical genre of the Summer of Love band that completed the night's transportation to the late '60s.
With San Francisco's "Summer of Love" as inspiration for the fundraiser, Richard Flowers and The Events Co. created a pop music inspired backdrop for the 350 guests, many of whom were costumed to reveal their inner flower child.
Marion and his wife Cathy were among the leaders in the '60s fashion inspiration pack. Also among the wildly costumed guests were Lois and George Stark, Gracie and Bob Cavnar, Kathryn Ketelsen with Alley actor Todd Waite, and Connie and Roger Plank. A few among Alley supporters including Cynthia and Tony Petrello, Margaret Alkek Williams and Jim Daniel, and Dancie and Jim Ware opted for more cocktail-appropriate attire.
Roger Plank and Meredith Long were introduced as gala honorees by Alley artistic director Gregory Boyd.
In addition to the throw-back sounds of the Woodstock generation, delicious entertainment came with the. Tony's catered the party food which began with mini gourmet nachos and tiny corn dogs and continued with passed treats including cheeseburger, grilled chicken, caprese, and chicken fried steak sliders, two kinds of hot dogs, and three varieties of fries (truffle, sweet potato and classic French fries).
The party food fun continued with malt and mini-donut roadies, cotton candy and a sundae bar. Lots of sugar for the night of dancing to the tunes of the Rolling Stones, Creedence Clearwater Revival, Janis Joplin, Joe Cocker and more.
Making the scene were Alley managing director Dean Gladden and wife Jane, Carmen and Butch Mach, Jennifer Smith and Peter Ragaus, Linda and Dr. Walter McReynolds, Pat Breen, Christy and Lou Cushman, and Kathy and John Orton.