Crystal Ball sparkled
Mission accomplished: Glittering event raised record $ 2.7 million for B. C. Children’s Hospital
ONE FOR ALL: When the 28th-annual Crystal Ball set out to benefit the B. C. Children’s Hospital Foundation recently, you didn’t need its namesake item to predict that a record $ 2.7- million would be raised. That was more or less guaranteed by the presence of ball chair Arya Eshghi’s philanthropistuncle Djavad Mowafaghian. As some might leave a tip following a dinner from Four Season executive chef Ned Bell, Mowafaghian tossed in $ 1.4 million. That fully funded the EOS Imaging System that was the event’s aim and released other contributors’ $ 1.3 million for pediatric orthopedics programs.
ICE TIME: Aquilini Investment Group managing director and Vancouver Canucks hockey team co- owner Francesco Aquilini first appeared in this column in January, 2000. Having donated $ 125,000- worth of family funds to Hastings Park’s Il Giardino Italiano, he watched sledgehammer- wielding landscaper Irvano Moscano launch the project by arranging some boulders. Aquilini has piled up a few rocks himself lately. It started with 4.8carat and 2.5- carat earrings for Martine Argent, whose grandfather John “Buster” Clark was a Toronto Rangers, Toronto Ravinas and Detroit Olympics goalie. Now he’s added a 5.5- carat champagne-diamond ring that went well with Argent’s Roberto Cavalli blue gown at the Crystal Ball. Looks like this meeting could go into overtime.
GHOST OF WEDDING PAST: As three pre- divorcees compared their newly naked ring fingers this week, one said: “It’s like having a phantom limb.”
CLEAR SIGHT: Diane Forsythe Abbott was farsighted in 1994 when her chance encounter with the YWCA’s Crabtree Corner Family Resource Centre turned into annual fundraising lunches. Her eyes are letting her down nowadays. But YWCA officials at Hy’s Encore’s jam- packed upstairs room Thursday clearly saw how Forsythe Abbott’s continuing efforts help fund the transitional housing and support services some mothers and children need.
HISTORY MADE: Rana Vig founded Mehfil magazine in 1993. Now he’s republished many of the glossy’s Reflections columns about Indo- Canadian pioneers and others. They’re in a volume titled A 100 Year Journey, representing the time elapsed since Canadian officials refused entry to the immigrant ship Komagata Maru. Vig released the compilation at a Pacific Rim hotel banquet recently. Adroitly reflecting the tragic 1914 event, Skyrocket Digital strategy director Mo Dhaliwal created a facsimile passport bearing a photo and legal- landing stamp for all attendees. Among them, one in his early thirties said: “You know, at my age. I’m not really sure what the Komagata Maru was.”
COUNTERINTUITION 101: From a funeral services firm comes a full- year calendar with hopes for “a happy, healthy, prosperous 2015.”
MWAH- MWAH TIME: When the downtown Omega boutique hosted a “private showcase of beautiful timepieces” recently, a number of invitees seemed more intent on appraising and air- kissing each other. Not four- year- old Matteo Escoto, though. After carefully studying the watches displayed, he settled on a Seamaster Planet Ocean Liquidmetal Titanium. For Santa to drop that down the chimney would cost parents Fynn and Gladys $ 7,900.
HI- DI- RYE: Eight- decade Hotel Vancouver bandleader Dal Richards played at Tourism Vancouver’s Christmas lunch there Thursday. During intermission, he recalled a much shorter one when an esteemed late sax player found he’d forgotten his usual mickey of whiskey. “From the band room window, we watched him race across Robson Street, turn down Hornby to the liquor store, and run back again,” Richards said. After rising 14 floors and taking several slugs of booze, he was back on stage just in time for the downbeat. “In all those years, he never missed miss a note,” Richards whistled .
PARRYDIDDLES: Love On A Leash principal Tammy Preast says human kibble and hot cider will be served during the $ 20- ticket Santa Paws fundraiser at Grandview Highway’s Tisol pet store this afternoon and Sunday … See such late prominent citizens as Cornelius Burke, Tom Ladner and Doug Maitland in the Maritime Museum’s Western Waters exhibition of a century of naval activity … Kudos to the Hotel Vancouver for the art- printed scaffolding drapery that portrays northeast- corner windows and masonry being renovated behind it.
DOWN PARRYSCOPE: With city hall naming the blackcapped chickadee its bird of the year, perhaps the NDP will request that our provincial bird, the Steller’s jay, be replaced by Nucifraga columbiana, a. k. a. Clark’s nutcracker.