It could have been a party thrown by the Pink Ladies -- that girl gang from the musical Grease. The Pimlico Race Course's Hall of Fame Room seemed to dance in the ladies' signature colors of pink and black, while some guests at the Baltimore Opera Guild's "OperaHop" kicked up a storm on the dance floor to the '50s tunes of the Fabulous Hubcaps. Others browsed a buffet of '50s food, like hot dogs, French fries and ice cream sundaes -- all the while raising more than $14,000 for the Baltimore Opera Company.
"This is adorable. It's so un-opera," raved Opera Guild board member Deborah Rose. "You're getting people here who don't normally go to the opera."
Those folks certainly saw a different side to opera, and the people who love it. All they needed was one look at Baltimore Opera's executive director Michael Harrison with his 7-year-old son Graham -- decked out in matching jeans, black T-shirt, bandanna and shades -- to know these weren't the opera fans your grandparents hung out with.
Others in the crowd of 226 included: Laurie Russell and Jim Williams, event co-chairs; Jacqueline Newman and Pat Lakatta, event committee members; Rosemary Eck, Baltimore Opera Guild president; Hank Homes, Maryland Office Relocators president; George Ward, Dempsey & Carroll president; Betsy Hayes, Chapin, Davis securities broker; Peter Winkenwerder, Miscellaneous Management Services owner; Stuart R. Berger, Baltimore Circuit Court judge; Richard Swartz, Mano Swartz Furs in Cross Keys president; Lynn Abeshouse, Manekin Brothers Abeshouse Commercial Real Estate principal; Irvin Tark, Tundra Sweaters regional manager; John Davis, Johns Hopkins University real estate director; Eddie Applefeld, local radio personality; Ann Lesch, Digex webmaster; and Jeanne Berger, Tutor Time Childcare Center co-owner.