Parks and Recreation

The fashion crowd decamps to Brooklyn's Prospect Park


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In Paris, you hear people calling things "très Brooklyn"—New York's biggest borough is a global brand now. It started swinging even a little more last night, at the Prospect Park Alliance's Summer Soirée.

The chair of the Junior Committee, Sally Singer, had once again lured a stylish crowd to the park's boathouse. Not that getting the fashion flock out was the whole point. "I think what makes this different is the mix of people—social workers, teachers, models, musicians," Singer explained. "In New York, usually you go to a party, and you kinda know who's going to be there."

With her powers and those of DVF (the lead sponsor) combined, the designers did, it must be said, come out in droves. Prabal Gurung, Misha Nonoo, and Todd Snyder were among them; Bibhu Mohapatra was, too, and looking especially happy, having just fixed a badly timed air-conditioning meltdown in his studio. "My creativity has gone up 50 percent," he reported.

Like many—including Singer, who lives at the Chelsea Hotel—Mohapatra had come from points west and seemed to enjoy the tangible ebbing of Manhattan atmosphere. Bill Cunningham was springing around and snapping party pictures, but so was a Brooklyn-based magazine editor's 9-year-old daughter. Snow cones, hot dogs, and popcorn were being served up, and Utz (as in the potato chips) took this fairly seasoned reporter's prize for most surprising sponsor.

The trendier stuff—bike tune-ups, a "Beginners Homebrew Class," tours of a distillery and a coffee plant—was up for silent auction. A local band, The Drums, played a set. The event had the biggest turnout it's had in its eleven years, and stumbling home from it was easier than ever. Not only do fashion folk not get lost on their way out now, Singer said, "they know every restaurant to eat in around here."

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