For the genteel who retire to their Park Avenue floor-throughs, the seasons are marked by the changing flowers and trees that grace their iconic mall. It was philanthropist Mary Lasker’s vision that spearheaded the effort to get first the City and then the private sector involved planting the tulips she had shipped from Amsterdam where 19th Century trains once ran on above ground tracks. It culminated in the creation of the Fund for Park Avenue, a privately-funded beautification program which plants and maintains the malls between 54th and 86th Streets.
Since 2009, the Fund’s rite of spring is the Scully & Scully annual “Tulip Party,” celebrating the iconic mall tulips. Socialites are invited to create table settings from Scully & Scully’s vast stock of aspirational crystal, china and silverware. This year, it was Park Avenue authors who created the tablescapes. Andrea Robinson’s pink-themed dressing table paid homage to her book “Toss the Gloss.” Jennifer Ash Rudick, author of “Palm Beach Chic,” created a tropical table with accents of purple. Reminiscent of their conversations with artists during the creation of their book “Artists Living with Art,” Amanda Benchley and Stacey Goergen created a welcoming bar utilizing an eclectic mix of objects and glasses. Jacqueline Bograd Weld, author of “Peggy: The Wayward Guggenheim,” which inspired the recently released documentary “Peggy Guggenheim: Art Addict,” brought together a variety of textures and colors.
The party filled every nook and cranny of the sprawling fine home furnishings, collectibles, and jewelry, store. Yet, with the room filled with friends and neighbors who go back generations, the party retained an intimate feel.
President of The Fund for Park Avenue Barbara McLaughlin, always an ambassador of the McLaughlin understated chic style, wore a yellow and white large floral print, in honor of this season’s tulip color. She led the room in wishing the evening’s host, Michael E. Scully, Happy Birthday with a custom-made “Scully & Scully shopping bag cookie” from Eleni’s New York, which provides The Fund’s signature party favor, a yellow tulip cookie. Music was supplied by Alex Donner Entertainment.
For those who want a piece of Park Avenue in the Hamptons, come June, when scheduled, all are invited to dig up the bulbs to save for next year.
For more information, visit www.fundforparkavenue.org.