Monthly Archives

January 2009


The Philadelphia Industry Lounge at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival

Disclosure: When I heard so many friends were going out to Sundance I asked them for photos and stories. Today it’s The Philadelphia Industry Lounge at the 2009 Sundance Film Festival (Next week another friend’s story) The Philadelphia Industry Lounge at the Sundance Film Festival was created to inform and educate filmmakers and entertainment industry professionals about the special tax incentives for filming in Philadelphia and also to showcase the unique landscape and offerings of the Philadelphia region. The Philadelphia Industry Lounge was privately funded, with the blessings of Mayor Nutter and the Greater Philadelphia Film Office, through Philadelphia based businesses such as Cashman & Associates, Shooters Post & Transfer’s DIVE division and entertainment industry professionals such as Cozen O’Connor entertainment lawyer Justin Wineburgh and J.P. Cummins from Janney Montgomery Scott LLC who believe in the initiative and encourage filmmaking in Philadelphia. Located on Main Street in Park City within the Island Def Jam House of Hype, the Philadelphia Industry Lounge was in a prime location for awareness and traffic through the space. Some celebrity guests included Actor Wesley Snipes, Model Christy Brinkley, Actor Kevin Sorbo, the band Hoobastank, Actress Andie MacDowell, musician Ryan Cabrera, and Jay Lyon from MTV’s The City.

In addition to the city and film office information distribution, the Philadelphia Industry Lounge offered guests a “taste” of Philadelphia,” featuring food & beverage products such as Tony Luke’s Philadelphia Cheese Steaks, Tastykakes, Peanut Chews, Bluecoat Gin and Pravda Vodka. Also, the Philadelphia Eagles and Phillies sent some fun team items (T-shirts, rally towels, hats, etc.) to be given away at the Lounge.

Dare was another film that premiered in the Festival, starring Emmy Rossum, Ashley Springer, Zac Gilford, Alan Cumming, Ana Gasteyer and Sandra Bernhard. Dare was filmed in Philadelphia and written by Philadelphia native David Brind. (I saw Alan Cumming and Ana Gasteryer on Broadway 2 years ago in Three Penny Opera with Cyndi Lauper, it was wild)
J.P. Cummins of Janney Montgomery Scott LLC,, Alan Cummings and Sharon Pinkenson.Pravda Vodka’s signature Riviera Martini was served in the Philadelphia Industry Lounge.
Philadelphians whooped it up with the stars at premiere party for the documentary Crude hosted by Self Magazine and MSN Green. Sting and wife Trudie Styler were dancing all night, as was Paris Hilton. Pierce Brosnan and famous Philadelphians Kevin Bacon and Jamie Kennedy were spotted at the fete as well. Justin Wineburgh and Paris Hilton.
Ashley Schaffer from Cashman & Associates serves authentic Tony Luke’s Cheese Steaks in the Philadelphia Industry Lounge

On Sunday, January 18th, the Philadelphia Industry Lounge hosted a party to cheer on the Philadelphia Eagles during the NFC Championship game. Eagles fans from all over came to the Lounge to rally for the birds. Former Eagles player Terrell Owens even stopped by unexpectedly (although, we have a hunch he wasn’t too disappointed by the loss). Another unexpected moment at the Eagles party was an engagement via the Lounge’s television screens, to which the fans replied, “Turn the game back on!” You know how diehard Eagles fans are!
Philadelphia Style Magazine also made a presence at Sundance in the Philadelphia Industry Lounge. Wherever there is a star-studded Philly bash, Philadelphia Style is sure to be there – even in Park City! Bluecoat, American Dry Gin is craft-distilled here in Philadelphia and made with organic botanicals. Andrew Auwerda, President of Philadelphia Distilling, acted as brand ambassador in Sundance where he also introduced Vieux Carre Absinthe, the newest spirit from the micro-distillery.

This year’s Festival included at least six films with a Philadelphia connection making 2009 the perfect year for the Philadelphia Industry Lounge initiative. On Friday, January 16th, the Philadelphia Industry Lounge hosted the post-screening party for West Philadelphia-native Lee Daniel’s new film Push, which premiered at the Festival. Members of the cast including Mariah Carey, Gabourey Sidibe, Paula Patton and Mo’Nique Imes were in attendance, as well as other celebrities like Nick Cannon, Russell Simons, Young Jeezy, Ben Lyons of E!, Robin Thicke and Cuba Gooding Jr.

(OMG What Happened to, he’s buff and bearded) Sting and my buddy Ray Evers
J.P. Cummins of Janney Montgomery Scott LLC, sponsor of the Philadelphia Industry Lounge; Justin Wineburgh of Cozen O’Connor, sponsor of the Philadelphia Industry Lounge; Lee Daniels, Philadelphia native and director/screenwriter of the film Push; Sharon Pinkenson, Executive Director of the Greater Philadelphia Film Office; Nicole Cashman of Cashman & Associates, sponsor of the Philadelphia Industry Lounge at the Push premiere party.


The Pennsylvania Groundhog tries to escape his Shadow – Plus Monday at Noon in City Hall Courtyard celebrate Groundhogs Day

Remember to scroll all the way to the bottom to read about a special Groundhog Event Monday at Noon in Phila City Hall Courtyard, and maybe you will be on PhillyChitChat, if you want.

I was at the Reading Terminal Market the other day and noticed these flyer’s regarding the missing Pennsylvania Groundhog, which is just unacceptable this close to Groundhog day next Monday. Seems he was in a bit of an accident according to

Someone wants him to stay underground maybe in an attempt to stem global warming
Who could be so dastardly…why it’s Shadow

Maybe the Reading Terminal security guards are in on it, as they point in the direction where they last saw the Groundhog scurry. Captured and on his way back to his hole
and punished by Shadow as he gives him a swift kick in the tail
Just “Me and My Shadow

But Groundhog won’t give up without a fight, he wants Spring to come as soon as possible, don’t you, if not to just shut up the alarmist weather guessers of Philadelphia, especially the bow tie guy who predicted a very snowy winter including 6 inches in December.

This year is the 5th anniversary of the Pennsylvania’s Groundhog tourism advertising and Philebrity is giving away a plate to commemorate the celebration, as well has having a video of this incredible event.
Last year I told you about:

A Groundhog Day Celebration – Jan and John Haigis lead a sing-along of their Groundhog Day Carols at City Hall

Every year in the Courtyard of Philadelphia City Hall, local musicians Jan and John Haigis lead a sing-along of Groundhog Day Carols to celebrate the changing seasons

So look for The Haigis to lead you in song (songbooks for sale) on Groundhogs Day in Philadelphia City Hall Courtyard at Noon on Monday. How unique is that?


OSCAR VIEWING PARTY IN PHILADELPHIA 2009 to benefit the Traverse Project

Years ago there used to be one at The Franklin Institute, I don’t know what happened to that but this year there is one right on Rittenhouse Square at the Ethical Society. I love a fun Oscar Watching party, but this sounds like more than that:

Alright…here’s the latest on the Red Carpet Party (an Oscar Viewing Celebration and Benefit)
-Remember “OSCAR” when used to signify the Awards, is a trademark 😉
Large Scale Oscar(R) Ceremony Projection . Two Floors of Fun . Cocktails . Special Guest Hosts February 22, 2009 8:00 PM until the Best Picture Award!

DJ for the evening—Ricky Paul of Dumpsta Players

Kitchen Master–Chef Amanda MacWilliams, Former Grill Chef at the old Stripped Bass Restaurant
Red Carpet Interview Crew-DOWNTOWN: The Actors Lounge with Tony Lankford
Red Carpet Photo–Lui (You will actuall get a high quality photo and have it printed out to take with you)

Open Bar with Wine, Beer, and Vodka Cocktails
Vodka Cocktails—Sponsored by Rain (NO…RAIN VODKA IS NOT ALL FLAVORED! We will have 18 bottles of the core, unflavored fodka, and 4 bottles of the flavored ones.)

Truffle Station – YUM
“Build Your Own” Ligurian Blinis
(Ligurian Olives Tapenade with Sun Dried Tomatoes)
Dessert Selections and lots more to eat

Franzia Wine sponsored by The Wine Group

More to come folks!
$50 (Advance Purchase at
$75 At Door

$30.00 At the door Once we start ads in Citypaper next week, they will snowball out!

Start Time:
Sunday, February 22, 2009 at 8:00pm
End Time:
Monday, February 23, 2009 at 12:00am
The Ethical Society Building
1906 Rittenhouse Square
Philadelphia, PA

Contact Info



I explained earlier this week that my computer is ill so I am unable to write about anything new as we are recovering the photos from the past 6 weeks. These are photos I took (2001 – 2006) before I went pro. These photos have something to do with Philly and were on my laptop, or as I like to call it, another back up of my favorite photos. I took this photo of Oprah during the 2001 NBA All Star Game Weekend here in Philly. I have shot Oprah more than a dozen times.
Actor Christian Campbell is in town this week working on an upcoming project. I saw him enter the Gallery today, wanted to grab him and tell him to go to Liberty Place or anywhere else. I had just gone walked through and the place was crawling with folks who looked like they were in the movie “Dawn of the Dead.” (2005)

Howard Stern’s Wife (GF here) Beth Ostrosky. August 18, 1986 in History. Event: Howard Stern Radio Show premieres in Philadelphia Pennsylvania on WYSP 94.1 FM (2005)

TO at the David Letterman show doing a stunt. According to National Post: Of all the Terrell Owens-related news that would come as a surprise — Terrell Owens cut by the Dallas Cowboys, Terrell Owens will return to the Dallas Cowboys, Terrell Owens runs over actual cowboys while admiring himself in rearview mirror — the news that Owens is getting a reality show ranks very near the bottom of the list.

But that is what is happening, and boy, it’s just what this economy needs. No, wait. It is almost the last thing that the economy needs. (2006)Ben Vereen was just in town to entertain at the Marian Anderson Awards last November. This was taken after a Katrina Charity Event I attended in NYC with Liza Minelli and Bernadette Peters. Bernadette’s husband was killed in a helicopter accident later that night.
Laura Linney nothing to do with Philly, but she just won a SAG award and I love her. This event was a Broadway Cares event that happens yearly, when you can see a lot of your favorite celebs, get an autograph and a photo with for a donation to charity.
Regis Philbin leaves the David Letterman show. Letterman tapes two shows on Monday, Monday’s and Friday’s. If I travel to NYC I try and incorporate Monday’s so I can get at least 4 celebs in one fell swoop. The stage door is on 43rd Street, midway down the block. Celebs often stop and sign autographs there. It’s a great place to get shots for the photographers and I have had about 3 photos in People Mag after capturing a few here.
Liza Minnelli helped the Prince Theater celebrate their 10th Anniversary last year. I caught her outside the Pierre Hotel in NYC at an event I read she would be attending. I knew if I stood near the ashtray she would come out eventually, and she did. This is the Prince of Spain. His mother was being honored at this event. Liza was jonesing it as I wanted the photo b4 she had her cigarette.
Joanne Woodward and Paul Newman. Paul Newman. In 2005, Paul Newman wanted to bring auto racing to Philadelphia’s Benjamin Franklin Parkway. Thankfully it faced opposition in City Hall and from the institutions that would be affected by the estimated $800,000 in renovation costs. Plus they would have taken out one of the Fairmount ball fields.
Felicia P. Fields (the original Sofia) in the Color Purple, also did the road show which stopped by Philly in 2008. I believe I have the only two “Color Purple” posters signed by the entire original cast, which I bought at a Broadway Cares event, and later had signed by Oprah when she rang the Nasdaq Bell. One of my photographer friends took a photo of Oprah signing the poster which makes it even worth more money. Someday I may donate one of them to a charity if I think they can get the $1,000 that I know it is worth. (Or if my portfolio tanks anymore I may need to sell it to eat in my old age)
A shot of Lil Kim leaving MTV’s TRL the night before she was to be incarcerated in Philadelphia for a year. (I photographed her last February at the Marc Jacobs fashion show right after she got out, and she looked fabulous)Just because I love her so much. I took this 9/05 at my first Fashion Week. Gwen was on her way to the tents to show her first collection of LAMB.


THE 2009 LEMON BALL was anything but a Lemon

This year’s Lemon Ball, the third annual soiree for Alex’s Lemonade Stand, pulled in $500,000 from 600 or so attendees for childhood cancer research. The event featured food and entertainment, silent and live auctions, raffles and other activities. The foundation carries on the work of Alexandra Scott, who started selling lemonade at the age of 4 to support childhood cancer research and died of the disease at the age of 8 in 2004. (Yellow is also the color of any of the Alex’s Lemonade events) Everytime I attend one of these charity events I am so blown away by the generosity of the sponsors and of the silent auction donors. Thank you, with your contribution it makes the night just that more exciting to see who is going home with their prize and how much more money will go to the cause. (thank god I leave my checkbook at home)
Liz Scott talks with guests. A live auction netted $13,000 for a plate of lemon cookies baked by Liz Scott, mother of charity namesake Alex Scott, who would have turned 13 over the weekend. the cocktail food was delicious and surprisingly yellow in color
The owners and trainer of the thoroughbred race horse Afleet Alex, who dedicated a portion of the horse’s winnings to the foundation, will be honored.
Emcees at the Philadelphia Marriott were former 76ers president Billy King (with his wife Melanie), CBS News’ Tracy Smith and former KYW3 weather guesser Dave Frankel
Keith Joffe, Caroline Kallman, Lauren Botoff and Steve Tutelman, all of Govberg Jewelers (another generous sponsor)
Pat Maguire and Jacqueline Kelly, both on the Committee for the Lemon Ball and looking stunning. I should ask people were they get their clothes for your knowledge. Maybe only the fabulous ones.
Steve Pogue and Anne Bibby. I wonder if he won that sports package?
All the way from Chicago are Selena and Daman Kowalski –
Many wonderful people have come out of Chicago lately including a student from Washburne School, Selena Kowalski, who suggested ALSF for the All-School Project for 2007-2008, and after a vote, the Foundation was selected. The school put on one fundraiser per semester, holding bake sales, pie sales, selling message grams and t-shirts. All told, the fundraising year had raised $10,000 for the battle against childhood cancer! Thank you Washburne, and thank you Selena Kowalski.
Thanks for reading PhillyChitChat friend Keith W. Petrowski with his guest Justine Stahl. When I saw them I knew immediately they had to be included as Justine has this magnificent gown on, and Keith had a complimentary vest and bow tie in the shade of yellow.
Susan and John McCaughey with Steve and Michell Cassel. Busy night for Steve as the Hair of the Dog and Lemon Balls were both black tie events (did I mention that I am creating a conflict calendar, yes that’s right, send me your charity events, your black tie events, your events with 100+ guests and I will put it on the calendar so when your guests decline the invite you might have an idea why and plan accordingly the next time) Steve busy as he owns Formal Wear of Havertown.
As the guests sat down for dinner it was time for me to go to the out of control, wild Hair of the Dog Ball, which was equally as stunning, but much louder and wilder. For a weekend where more than half of Philly was out of town at Sundance (tomorrow night I will be writing about Philly at Sundance, lots of celeb sightings and Philebrities), The Eagles game in Phoenix or at the Inauguration, both Balls were packed and a ball.
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