Monthly Archives

August 2008



With a soiree at Vango on the top floor deck with a beautiful view of the City. I have to say this summer really went fast; I know our mothers always tell us that as we age the years go by faster and faster, and my mom was on target this year. Maybe it zoomed by because at the beginning my sister was diagnosed with Ovarian Cancer and I am hanging on to ever minute I can spend with her, maybe this summer I was forced to reevalute how much time I can put into Philly Chit Chat as I work full time, and Philly Chit Chat is full time, in the fall I am going to have to find a happy balance. Maybe it’s because I was going to have a big launch for Philly Chit Chat in September, now rescheduled for January.

But this is what you can expect. Philly Chit Chat will be covering the social scene, the details that go into executing a successful event, who does the flowers, who’s on the guest list and why? A calendar of events, and a few other surprises. Here are a few of my favorite people, Dino Minelli and Dana Lombardo.
Ellie, Krista and Holly
Many of the people invited to this end of the summer party were people that partnered on events that were thrown this past season. Here we have Tamara Vostok, Joe B., NBC 10’s marketing director Letizia Rubino and PR goddess Paige Wolf

Festivities Events Ian Shafer, Taylor Goddard, Laurie Satran and Alain Flambea
I’m amazed at how much really goes on in Philadelphia. Besides all the great restaurants, movies, people, the arts, museums, there are parties, openings, social events for everyone imaginable, and although there may be sites to cover some of these events, I want my readers to think, last night such and such happened, I bet Philly Chit Chat has the photos.
Kyle Ruffin, Melony Roy and Jamyra Perry
Jenise, Gregory Augustine of Augustine Interiors, Noel Bruno and Scott Barnes

Often these events bring together people for the first time that can be mutually benefiting for future events. On the right Melody, and Steve Butler work for CBS News, Tamyra works for WOGL and Paige Wolff has a PR Firm. Paige Wolff had lunch with Willingboro’s Olympian Carl Lewis the other day. laris Kresling, Tunde Kazeem and Gus Calabrase
Nicole Cashman and Cara Schneider (OK gotta work on that night photography and this new lens of mine)Happy Fall. The first exciting event of the season is this Thursday:
Rittenhouse Row’s Fall Gathering The annual fall fashion round-up on Thursday, September 4 at Marathon Grill, 1818 Market Street will feature XIX and JL Sullivan’s in the Cocktail Competition, and Polo Ralph Lauren featured on the runway. For information go to


Pearl Restaurant holds Pre-Party for Grand-Am/Ferrari Challenge/MotoST race weekend

The other night I received this invitation: Pearl and The WOT Group would like to extend an invitation for the upcoming Grand-Am/Ferrari Challenge/MotoST race weekend in Philadelphia. In layman’s terms it’s the Pre-Party of the inaugural Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series race at Thunderbolt Raceway in Millville, N.J., Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series – Event Info (Which you should look into attending this weekend, not only for the fast cars, but for you women the hot race car drivers. Who knew when you wash the grease off such hunks lie below) Wh

Race Car Driver Bryce Miller, Owner Gregory Loles, Race Car Driver Dirk Werner. Dirk Werner has really opened a lot of eyes this year, especially having to partner with a number of different teammates, with Bryce Miller is joining him for this weekends race.

The DJ pumps up the volmune. Women and men dance in place, for the more aerobic freestyle dance, you can find scantily clad women grooving their love thing closer to the back bar where there is plenty of space so “everybody free, feel good”

Elaine Grabar and Nicole Grable, and some guy who wishes he was in the photo?

Race Car Driver Dirk Werner making nice with the a few friendly Philadelphian’s Tina Winston and Tiffani McDonough (Either I have the names wrong, or the girl above is a twin, or both these girls should go watch the “Parent Trap”!)

OK these girls gave me their personal pocket camera’s and their gadgets did a much better job at focusing, as I mentioned last night, I got a new lense and am learning on the job. Thank god I’m not shooting Fashion Rocks here, ok seguway, I got credentialed today to shoot Fashion Rocks next Friday, so excited, don’t be hating, I will be sharing photos and stories from the red carpet. Here’s the guest list: Beyoncé, Black Eyed Peas, Chris Brown, Kid Rock, Duffy, Fergie, Justin Timberlake, L’il Wayne, Keith Urban, Mariah Carey and Rihanna; OK back to matters at hand, these beautiful women are Nicole Birdoni, Elaine Grabar, Allison Parrish, Joanne Goodwin, Nicole Grable, and Aida Mancini

Jennifer DellaPenna and Amy Coccarone tear up the dance floor at Pearl

According to Philly Edge, “Pearl is a restaurant and a lounge, with the dominant discipline depending on what time of the day, or night, one visits. The later it is, the more likely that the dark upstairs lounge has overtaken the opulent dining area on the ground level in popularity.” John prepares to take a clean set glasses to the bar. Trust me its a fun crowd, not like the bridge and tunnel trying to be a fun crowd. But what I really recommend is the food. I ate dinner here right around the time they first opened, and the food was delicious very good best Thai/SE Asian. The design of the place is a far cry from the Little Pete’s decor that stood in it’s place for decades. It’s a great addition to the block. Now if only the Boyd folks could get their act together, it’s next door, and it’s an eyesore.

Audrey Lehr and Ali Weiner

Michael Himmelsbach and David Lloyd will race their motorcyle at the Millville track this weekend. In recent years they have combinded both racing events, cars and motorcyles. Motorcylist racers Michael Himmelsbach and David Lloyd. Both enjoyed the pre-party at Pearl in celebration of the inaugural Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series race at Thunderbolt Raceway.

Ada, just Ada enjoying a night out with Erik Ringden and Robin Stellwagem

OK now these are the type of photos I wanna take, jumping on the banquette Michell Woolston, Marian Ahmad and Genisis Guevania strike a pose for me. I begining to like this new lens, it seems so sharp in the darkness of the popular club.

Philly Edge states, “The lounge provides a haven for well dressed drinkers, who enjoy seeing and being seen and prefer liquor-instead-of-beer – understandable, as the cocktail menu stems more from mixology than necessity. Thought goes into the drinks. Proof: No faux mint Mojito here, instead sample a refreshing blend of shochu, ten cane, soho lychee, calpico and shiso.”

Seriously, if you’re not doing anything, and you want to do something fun this Labor Day weekend in the Philadelphia area, check out this event. You won’t regret it:

Grand-Am Rolex Sports Car Series – Event Info


THE JONAS BROTHERS INVADE PHILADELPHIA re: 40 yrs after the Beatles the girls still scream the same for their idols

I have to laugh when the so called pundits in this town say that we don’t get celebrities; since I moved back here 18 months ago, I have photographed more than 3 dozen, but nothing tops the excitement, turnout and thrill the fans got when they lined up outside the Four Season’s hotel in Center City today to maybe get a glimpse of the Jonas Brothers. How did you guys know they would be here?
For these kids their generation Beatles are the Jonas Brothers.
I went to meet the Jonas Brothers to hear about their good news for the fans.Michele Wiltshire, Sheldon Jones, Kevin Jonas, Joe Jonas, and Nick JonasYou probably know this:

Joseph Adam “Joe” Jonas (born August 15, 1989) – Lead vocals, percussion, guitar (in the song “A Little Bit Longer”). Joe is the “middle Jonas.” He originally had no intention of becoming a singer; he wanted to be a comedian and work on the show All That.

Nicholas Jerry “Nick” Jonas (born September 16, 1992) – Lead vocals, guitar (usually a Gibson SG in the original red stain color), piano in the songs “When You Look Me in the Eyes” and “A Little Bit Longer,” and drums in the song “Australia.” Nick is the youngest brother in the band. On November 16, 2005 he was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes.[69]

Paul Kevin Jonas (II) (born November 5, 1987) – Lead guitar (usually a Gibson Les Paul) and backing vocals. Kevin is the eldest of the band. Goes by Kevin rather than Paul. Kevin helped produce the bands’ self-titled CD Jonas Brothers.
The Jonas Brothers have teamed up with Verizon wireless and Samsung to offer fans a vacation with the band in the Bahamas. Forty lucky winners will get round trip airfare, free accommodation at Atlantis resort, car services and premium tickets to a private concert with the brothers and $500 spending money.

During the press conference, the boys said they love their Philly fans, all Cheesesteaks are a like, but they’ve never had better sugar waffles than the ones they get at Bonte on 17th Street near Sansom.
The Jonas’ are known for their wholesome, family-friendly image. The brothers are all committed Evangelical Christians, their father is a former pastor, and they were homeschooled by their mother. In addition, they all famously wear purity rings on their left-hand ring finger and have vowed not to have premarital sex. Joe has said that the rings symbolize “a promise to ourselves and to God that we’ll stay pure ’till marriage,” and Nick had stated that “it’s [purity rings] pretty awesome, and the rings are just one of our ways of kind of like being different than everybody else out there.” They started wearing the rings when their parents, Denise and Kevin Sr., asked them if they wanted to.[62] They also abstain from alcohol, tobacco, and drugs.[63]
Customers who purchase or upgrade to Samsung Glyde or Verizon Wireless Juke by Samsung at participating Verizon Wireless or Circuit City locations between Sept. 2 and Nov. 1, 2008, register the purchase online and install Verizon Wireless’ V CAST Music with Rhapsody software on their computers will be able to instantly download four complimentary exclusive live versions of songs from the Jonas Brothers’ hot new album, A Little Bit Longer. Customers will also have the chance to be entered to win a trip to Atlantis to see the Jonas Brothers. More details are available at
I bought a new lens this week and am still learning to use it. On the job training is not recommended. I completely overexposed this shot, which would have been a killer if it was done correctly. Here the Jonas brothers wave to their fans outside the hotel. It was about this time that I promised myself I would have a Tylenol since the piercing screams of the fans were giving me a headache.As they return to their cars, which will take them to the concert venue in Camden for rehearsal, a few fans made it up to the sidewalk and got a handshake and ‘graph from their idols.
During the press conference, the boys said they just checked into the hotel at 5AM, they couldn’t believe that a few fans were outside waiting. They signed for them and then went to bed. Well 7 hrs later we see Franklin “Frankie” Nathaniel Jonas or bonus Jonas as he’s called, sporting an Eagles shirt. Maybe he packed it, maybe he bought it in the gift shop, either we appreciate that you are wearing our sports team on your shirt. Mom knows how to represent when she’s in the City of Brotherly Love!!The Jonas’ are known for their wholesome, family-friendly image. The brothers are all committed Evangelical Christians, their father is a former pastor, and they were homeschooled by their mother. In addition, they all famously wear purity rings on their left-hand ring finger and have vowed not to have premarital sex.
Here Kevin signs an autograph for a fan as he waits for the light to change.
A lucky fan showed me the ‘graph he got from the boys.
As the crowds line the streets the boys were off. Kinda reminded me of the time Prince Charles and Camilla came to town and stayed at the very same hotel.
Don’t be left on the sideline watching your idols go by, instead win a chance to vacation with the Jonas Brothers. And as much as you might want to buy a phone to download their latest tunes, you don’t have to to enter this contest, the Verizon folks tell me, so check out More details are available at for all the details.

You know how newspapers like the Inquirer or the NY Daily News is getting into video to support their news sources, well Fox TV News is getting into photos. The women next to me was shooting for Fox 29 with a small digital camera. You would think they would want to invest in a better equiptment if they want to blaze the new trail. Check out these photos:

Fangapvids posted this video of the event on youtube, and you can be there!


Intoxicating photographs of soirée! re: Philadelphia Inquirer & Daily News bi-annual Photo Exhibit

Mary Patel is always looking out for me, pushing me, inspiring me, and she knows what’s good for me. She called me up a few weeks ago and said “HughE I know you admire a lot of the Philly Inquirer and Daily News photographers, and I want to take you to a photo exhibit that they have twice a year at one of their houses.”
I responded with the same trepidations that I do whenever I have a chance to meet someone I admire, I said no I can’t go. She insisted and well I went. Would I see one of my favorite photographers, ERIC MENCHER (WEBSITE), TOM GRALISH/PHOTOGRAPHER , TED ADAMS/PHOTOGRAPHER or April Saul?
Well I met Eric Mencher and his lovely wife of 23 years, Kass Mencher ; I also met Ted Adams, April Saul and a handful of others.
by Philadelphia Inquirer Photographer Eric Mencher.
Elliot Curson had a few political photos on display (I had no idea he was a photographer). One of his photos was my favorite.
Hillary Clinton purposely shot out of focusThe invitation stated:

Intoxicating photographs of soirées
and celebrations —
Or political
parties and party conventions.
Dirty dancing and leisure wear,
campaign trails and blow-dried hair!
indiscretions, lame-duck sessions,
I had a chance to talk to a few of the photographers and they all sensed a forboding sense of hopelessness, that maybe this was the last time that many of them would be showing here as a co-employee. One even said that occassionally they look out the window and expect to see the Ch3 KYW truck outside reporting that the paper has closed. It’s scary times for these folks who were dedicted to their field delivering photos in our newspaper that sometimes told the story better than the copy. In recent days there has been a lot of talk of more cut backs of the paper.

I wrote my friend John Taggert, who used to freelance for the Philly Daily News:

“The Philly Newspapers are in for a blood bath. 15 photographers are being let go. 15 columnist. Some of this could just be because of digital cameras and how easy it is to get the photos processed now; you need less people on the street because of turnaround. [Where will my photographers that I love end up? What will they do? ]I don’t want to see my paper go under.”

John, who currently shoots for the NY Daily News, writes back:
“its not because of digital cameras, its not because there is a lack of circulation, its not because people don’t read anymore, its all a bunch of shit, these papers need more people on the streets than ever with all of the government corruption , police scandals and other shit going on in our so called “free society” I am going to take a photograph of the constitution and enlarge the rights to a free press and put that on the fucking window of my car. This country is doomed buddy, save your self, tell Philly to say goodbye to the newspaper industry and let everyone start their own media crunching eye watching website, newspapers are dead, the sooner these hard headed journalists realize that, the better off we are.” Dead Men Walking, indeed. Check out my favorite philly Inquirer & Daily News Photographers linked through Eric Menchers site:
Thanks: Sarah Stolfa, Jenny Lynn, Tony Ward, Harvey Finkle, Elliott Curson,
April Saul, David Maialetti, Michael Mercanti, Harris Fogel, Laurie
Beck-Peterson, John Costello, Bunky & Rita deVecchis, Michael Perez, Richard
Bell, Kass Mencher, Sarah Berry, Angelo Benedetto, Meredith Edlow, John Gayusky,
Ed Snyder, Phil Taylor, Mike Zebe, Ted Adams and others.