It wasn't a total redux of her 50th-birthday celebration in Nantucket 10 years ago, but Franci Crane's 60th on the island this past weekend reverberated with a similar upbeat theme.
Friends and family came from Houston and from various vacation homes around the country to spend the weekend saluting the popular, fancy Franci, as she is affectionately known.
The partying began on Thursday, when hubby Jim Crane hosted dinner at the Great Harbor Yacht Club. It was an intimate start to the weekend of partying attended by Jim's son Jared Crane and daughter and son-in-law Krystal and Garrett Thompson, Franci's mother Bobbie Allen, Sis Johnson, Vance Muse, Carl Palazzolo, in from his summer perch in Maine, and Cece Fowler.
Friday night saw the full contingent of partygoers donning flip flops, capris and sweaters for the beachfront clambake on Miacomet Beach at sunset. Internationally-renowned photographers Carol Beckwith and Angela Fisher and The New Yorker editor Elisabeth Biondi were in the mix as well as Franci's son, hedge fund whiz Trey Beck in from New York, Susie and Sanford Criner, Karen and Harry Pinson and Phoebe and Bobby Tudor, who spend much of the summer in Nantucket.
As Houston Grand Opera's Rudy Avelar reported, "The clambake on the beach was fabulous — lobsters, clams, corn on the cob, the most delicious tomatoes, barbecued chicken."
The party action turned to the Crane's home spread on Saturday night where guests gathered under a party tent for a lavish buffet birthday dinner and a performance by the B-52s. "The setting was amazing," Sheridan Williams e-mailed, "tented on the Crane's eight-acre spread where they have three homes, all Nantucket style. The view as you entered the tent was the beautiful tables and decor, food stations, etc. and on out to the water with the beautiful boats and the sun setting."
In addition to those already mentioned, the Saturday night crowd included writer/editor Alice Gordon, Lynn Wyatt, Milton Townsend and Jackson Hicks, Hasty Johnson, Gracie and Bob Cavnar, John Eddie Williams, Lauren Clark, Kelli and Eddy Blanton, Carrin Patman and Jim Derrick, Melanie and Ben Barnes and so many more.
And over on Martha's Vineyard . . .
That's where you would have found Greenberg Traurig shareholder Roland Garcia and wife Karen over the weekend attending the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee retreat. Garcia e-mails that the weather was so friendly that most of the meetings and briefings with senators were held outdoors in a large tent behind the Harbor View Hotel. Imagine, the locals were complaining about the "heat wave" that had the weather in the 80s.
Highlight of the Garcias' visit was a reception where they rubbed shoulders with Meg Ryan, Al Franken, Jim Belushi and a host of U.S. Senators and candidates.
Down Victoria way
Houston artists John Palmer and Chris Silkwood, who specializes in mosaics, unveiled their Solo & Collaborative exhibition at the Nave Museum last week. The beautiful people from both Victoria and Houston turned out to celebrate the opening-night party and applaud the artists' works.
Palmer is back from a stint in Berlin where he did a number of paintings featured in a recent exhibition at his gallery in the Heights. The Solo & Collaborative remains on view in Victoria through Aug. 29.
Kate and Greg Scheinman at one table, Janet Gurwitch and Ron Franklin at another in the Friday night crush at Stella Sola where partner Bill Floyd arrived to check on things and introduce young chef Justin Basye to friendly diners.