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The society of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center held its sixth annual luncheon Tuesday afternoon at Daniel on Manhattan’s Upper East Side.
An all-female crowd — Coco Kopelman, Jill Kargman, Jennifer Creel, Jen Brill, Allison Aston and Bara Tisch — came out to show care and support for the cause, and they mostly cared in Chanel, which was sponsoring.
For the first time, the lunch combined the associates committee and the administrative board members into a bigger to-do than in past years.
“The executive board is the group that does the spring party every year. We call them ‘the big board,’” said Shoshanna Gruss, the associates committee chairman. She was wearing a sundress of her own design, under what she described as a “snowsuit.”
“This is our first mixing of the two, so there are a lot of mothers and daughters here today. It’s pretty fancy for noon on a Tuesday in the polar vortex,” she said.
Proceeds from the lunch support the pediatrics department at Sloan-Kettering, particularly a new treatment initiative targeting sarcomas. “Leukemia, 20 years ago was really, like, a death sentence for children,” Gruss said. “And now it’s 95 percent curable. So they feel with the right research, they can do the same thing for sarcomas, which have the same mortality rate for children [that leukemia used to].” She was clutching a hot pink Chanel bag that Charlotte Ronson had picked out for Gruss’ husband to buy for her about five Valentine’s Days ago.
“She was like, ‘That’s so cute,’ and I was like, ‘You picked it out!’ Yeah, that’s a good friend,” Gruss said.
Past the foyer, the sea of fur and Chanel tweeds made its way into the dining room for a three-course meal of mâche salad, sea bass and bergamot parfait and for remarks, kept brief, by Society president Martha Vietor Glass and vice chair of academic affairs Paul Meyers.
At one table, conversation ranged from upcoming ski trips and Manhattan private schools to Woody Allen’s “Blue Jasmine,” the Academy Award-nominated film about a Park Avenue woman’s descent into madness. Jamee Gregory, on her way out to catch a car, was wearing Uggs with pride — Chanel and Uggs, that is. “I said to myself, ‘I don’t care. My knees aren’t coming out in public today.’ In this polar vortex, there was no way I was wearing a skirt, even though I grew up in Chicago and I walked in the park today for an hour. So I’m wearing Chanel leggings and Uggs,” she said. “If you can bring all the ladies out in the cold, that’s a really special thing.” Anything for the cause.