Scene & Heard: Care for Kids
( COLBY WARE, BALTIMORE SUN / April 30, 2011 )
As folks filtered into Rams Head Live, it was immediately apparent that this Saturday night event wasn't the usual for the venue. There wasn't a T-shirt in sight. This was a crowd where "casual" meant no tie with that dress shirt and jacket. This group might be more accustomed to a show at, say, Goucher College's Kraushaar Auditorium.
In fact, many of the 500 expected had been used to going to that other venue once a year for the annual "Care for Kids" concert benefiting children and adolescents in the clinical and education programs at Sheppard Pratt. Previous years had featured performers like Gordon Lightfoot, Bob Newhart and Neil Sedaka.
For this, the 19th annual "Care for Kids" concert, crooner Michael Feinstein would be performing songs Frank Sinatra had made famous.
"It's a fun night and we decided to make it more fun [having it] at Rams Head Live," said Dr. Steven Sharfstein, Sheppard Pratt Health System president/CEO.
"I haven't been here before. This is really upbeat," said Dr. Byron Forbush, board chairman, there with his wife Betsy Forbush, Sheppard Pratt's retired director of volunteers.
Bob Schaftel, board member and his wife, Marilyn Schaftel, community volunteer, agreed.
"This is a bit more festive. It's more exciting. You have to come downtown," said Schaftel.
Dave Dannenfelser, Colliers International managing director/principal, saw another aspect to the change of venue.
"This shows that Sheppard's not just an organization for the Towson area," he said.
A nice orderly line to the dinner buffet formed up front, with guests like: Tim Hearn, board member, and his wife, Joyce Hearn, community volunteer; Margaret Allen, AGM Financial CEO, and husband, Philip J. Perkins, AGM Financial IT specialist; Ilene Lockman, Roland Park Place development officer; Pat Blanchard, American Red Cross planned giving officer; and Larry Hammerman, Hammerman Financial Group, Inc. president and his wife, Hilary Hammerman, Maryland Public Service Commission transportation division assistant director.
Groups of friends -- like Paul Miller, retired Commercial Credit CEO/chairman and his wife, Doris Miller, retired May Co. fashion coordinator; Dr. Emile Bendit, board member; and Diane Abeloff, retired medical illustrator -- relaxed around high top tables in front of the bandstand, getting ready for the show.
Among the evening's most enthusiastic audience members? 93-year-old Dr. Irving Taylor.
"Sinatra sings in my key," he said.
The retired medical director of Taylor Manor Hospital then demonstrated by bursting into a robust and perfectly on-key rendition of "It Was a Very Good Year."
-- Sloane Brown