Shelby's Social Diary
A giant-sized Fidel Castro whoops it up at Hudson Lounge: Young professionals get Havana hot
Any unsuspecting arrivals at Hudson Lounge Saturday night might have been surprised to find Fidel Castro greeting them at the door and even more surprised to find a 10-foot-tall Castro whooping it up on the dance floor with a similarly towering Carmen Miranda. But for the hosts behind the fifth annual "A Night in Havana" charity bash, it was party business as usual.
Amid the sleek black and white interiors of the popular nightspot, cigar girls proffered Cubans, mojitos and margaritas flowed like rivers and the pulsating sounds of DJ Senega inspired a packed dance floor. It was one rollicking time for the 600 partygoers — young professionals, chicas bonitas and dashing caballeros — who dressed in theme with plenty of fedoras and summer whites.
Topping off the scene was the midnight drum circle commanded by the so-called Havana Drum Quartet that banged away for a full 30 minutes.
Twice each year, the civic- and philanthropically-minded couples and individuals who organize these fundraisers select a different non-profit to benefit from their party nights. This night's proceeds will go to the 100 Club in honor of the firefighters killed and injured in the historically-deadly May 31 fire at the Southwest Inn.
The group's annual December fundraiser bash, "Don't Stop Believin'," will be the 10th and final in the series according to party host John Andell. "Ten years is a pretty decent run, I'd say," he emailed.
Hosts for the fundraiser included Stacy Andell, Peter Bales, James Zafereo, Christina and Dusty Wilkerson, Cory Krueger and Tara Crawford, James Gietz, Jamie and James Easterling, Kelly and Jay Cliburn, Tony Essalih, Katie and Anil Mahendra and Elizabeth and Scott McKnight.