By: Mary Jo Almeida-Shore
Christina Getty-Maercks celebrated her birthday in grand style a couple of weeks ago with a Rock of Ages themed bash that has officially become known as the party of the summer. The social elite, dressed to the nines (we’re talking 1989) in their finest ripped rocker clothes: vintage t-shirts, leather, miniskirts, tulle, neon and wigs for the birthday bash at the Maercks’ sprawling Sunset Island home. The award-winning, Ms. Cheezious food truck was parked in the Maercks’ front lawn, serving grilled cheese with bacon and pulled pork sandwiches to soak up the copious amounts of alcohol that fueled the party. The garage had been transformed into a photo booth complete with a green screen that became a backdrop from the Rock of Ages movie once the photos were printed- perfectly complimenting the guests’ outlandish outfits. Inside the house, a tattoo artist decorated exposed skin with temporary tattoos and inflatable dolls floated in the pool outside.
Just when we thought the party couldn’t be any more fun, we heard Journey’s “Any Way You Want It” blaring from the speakers and were delightfully surprised by a flash mob that took over the living room comprised of none other than Christina, her husband, Arin, and her friends, including Jillian Jacobson, Dina Balint, Hoby Buppert, Christina Buppert, Lisa Ranawat, Stephanie Aagard, Melissa Lazarus, and professional dancers, decked out in 80s Rocker costumes. You couldn’t wipe the smile off of the birthday girl’s beautiful face! Christina shared that the group had spent several hours learning the choreography at her house prior to the event. “The theme was ‘Rock of Ages’ so we chose songs from the movie. I love a good theme party. It breaks the ice among guests, and gets people mingling more.”
Partygoers including: Louis Aguirre, Belkys Nerey, Shannon Hori, Iran Issa-Khan, Sam Robin, Michael Leondas Kirkland, Tui Pranich, Jonathan and Criselda Breene, Daniel and Marcella Novela, Lukas Klessig, Frank Amadeo, Gigi Ganatra, Walid and Susie Wahab, Laura Buccellati and Claudia and Steven Brod to name a few, mingled and danced and danced and danced to 80s classics in between photo ops. The party was “Still rollin’, rock’ n’ rollin” until almost dawn. Long live Rock n’ Roll. Say, “Yeeeeeaaaah!”
Appleton Estate Remixology Bartender Challenge
Monday night, cocktail industry leaders, bartenders and guests gathered at Miami’s Blackbird Ordinary for the third-annual Appleton Estate Remixology Bartender Challenge. Guests sipped on original Appleton Estate cocktails and enjoyed Jamaican-inspired bites while DJ Tom Laroc played beats from all decades. As the competition began, judges, John Lermayer, Josh Wagner and former Miami winner, Mike Parish took their seats at the front of the bar to watch Miami’s top bartenders compete for a chance in the Finals round.
Round One was kicked off by Cricket Nelson of Clarkes. Dressed in a disco-themed outfit complete with a black afro, Cricket mixed up her “Hot Buttered Buns” cocktail to Eryka Badu’s “Annie don’t Wear no Panties.” Next up was Ben Clemons of No. 308 in Nashville, TN, who shook up his first cocktail to “Good Lovin” by The Rascals, which he topped off his “Big Woo” cocktail with a flame while tossing a Hawaiian floral lay on one of the judges. Dressed in long haired wig and mustache, Nick Nistico of Soho Beach House concocted his “Flip the Script” cocktail as he performed to “Sabotage” by The Beastie Boys. Richie Petronzi of Ocho at Soho Beach House came back to compete for his second year, mixing up his Appleton Estate Original “Die Die My Darling” cocktail in a black button up with a popped collar as he performed to a remixed version of “Mack The Knife” by Michael Buble. Last up was Rob Ferrera of The Dutch, dressed in a gangster outfit, Rob entertained the crowd as he made his “Notorious P.U.N.C.H” cocktail with Appleton Estate Reserve and blood oranges to Notorious B.I.G’s classic hit “Juicy.”
The judges deliberated for quite some time, but finally determined the winner-Ben Clemons! Ben will compete in the Appleton Estate Remixology Bartender Challenge Finals in New York City on September 10 against the winners from San Francisco, Boston and New York.
Over the Edge at the JW Marriott Marquis
More than a hundred thrill-seeking locals and community leaders recently rappelled 19 stories off the JW Marriott Marquis’ pool deck in downtown Miami for “Over the Edge”—a two-day, interactive fund-raising event benefitting Miami Children’s Initiative, a foundation aimed at improving the lives of underprivileged children and families in Liberty City. The event began on August 17th when local politicians and prominent community members rappelled 200 meters from the beautiful, all-glass JW Marriot Marquis Miami, overlooking the bay and the city’s skyscrapers. Following the day of rappelling, participants gathered for a VIP reception that brought along some additional local public figures and personalities, including City of Miami Mayor, Tomas Regalado, DJ Laz and the Miami Dolphin Cheerleaders.
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