Cystic Fibrosis Foundation's Spring Swing

March 28, 2010|By Sloane Brown Special to The Baltimore Sun

What turns the B&O Railroad Museum's roundhouse into a barn? A whole lot of rain. The Cystic Fibrosis Foundation planned for its annual Spring Swing party to be inside a Glyndon barn. But spring showers turned the barn's grounds into a muddy mess.

The shindig's locale changed, but the evening's theme - "barn chic" - went on as planned.

Several hundred guests milled around the old locomotives in their best farmhand bib-and-tucker, including all of the evening's co-chairs: Courtney and William Toomey, Amy and Mark Lavelle, Jamie and Charles Seymour, and Suzanne and Stuart Amos.

Steve Geppi, Diamond Comics CEO, arrived in jeans and a sports jacket. But his kids made up for his low-key look. Daughter and business consultant Gina Geppi was decked out in denim decorated with sequins and rhinestones. His son, Josh Geppi, Diamond International director of sales, was hoedown-ready in a plaid flannel shirt and dungarees.

"Check out my turquoise," said Aileen Grebow, community volunteer, as she dangled her bangles.

"My boots are a big deal," said Bill Hopkinson, Baltimore-based communications consultant, noting that he wasn't generally a costume kind of guy.

Ed St. John, St. John Properties president, sported ostrich cowboy boots with his jeans, while Rose Carpenter, retired attorney, wore a strapless denim dress. Cystic Fibrosis Foundation executive director Josie Schaeffer stayed on the chic side, in a simple black dress.

One of the few people in the room who actually owned the appropriate apparel left her barn gear at home. Avid horsewoman Sharon Akers, St. John Foundation executive director, said she left her real jodhpurs and riding boots behind and went for a cleaned-up look in black leggings and fashionable black boots.

"I was in the stalls this morning in my muck boots. That's enough," she said with a smile.

Sloane Brown may be contacted at

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