Anchors Aweigh: Star Gazing at Carnegie Abbey Benefits Children in Need

Jada & Chanelle Butler: matching Starkids!

Star Kids Scholarship Program picked the perfect May evening to launch its “Anchors Aweigh for the Star Gazing Soiree” event at Carnegie Abbey Club in Portsmouth. Cheerful yellow sunlight streamed into an enclosed terrace, where 150 guests mingled, sipped cocktails, and sampled flatbread and other hors d’oeuvres, along with the offerings of the made-to-order risotto station. Decorations featured deep blue and silver metallic colors, especially star-shaped balloons tied to silent auction tables.


The evening was notable for displaying what was perhaps the most dazzling array of fun and beautiful necklaces that Newport Seen has yet to encounter at a single event! Event Chair Jane Fleming looked lovely as she greeted guests, and Sue Petronello, Executive Director (and affectionately referred to as the “Mom”) for Star Kids, was exceedingly welcoming and gracious. Many children who had previouysly been sponsored by Star Kids also attended, some in school uniforms, helping to sell raffle tickets and cheerfully sharing the ways in which their lives have been changed through the organization’s programs.


Chair Jane Fleming

Later in the evening, the crowd moved into the clubhouse interior, where Star Kids Founder Dr. Tim Flanigan took the stage and relayed the tale of how he, while speaking with single mothers from disadvantaged backgrounds during his medical work, learned that their greatest wish was for their children to grow into happy, healthy, successful adults. In 2000, he became inspired to create a program with the goal to “give high-risk, low-income children a chance to escape a life of crime, disease, and poverty for which they might have otherwise been destined, by graduating from high school and going on to a higher educational experience.” Star Kids are eligible and selected  for the program because one or both of their parents have been incarcerated and/or treated for substance abuse. Children are held accountable by the program, and thus their success rate in graduating from school, and becoming true academic stars,  is outstanding.


  Mary & Al Reynolds, Kate Greenman

Live auction items included a 5-night stay on a houseboat on Seattle’s Lake Union, a Swiss dinner for 10 at Le Petit Gourmet, and Boston Red Sox tickets. The grand prize was a set of two EMS red kayaks donated by Kathy Pratt and Turner Scott, and won by Denise Roberts.


James Anton, Susan Russell & Sue Petronella

To learn more about Star Kids Scholarship Program, visit


                                                        -- Amanda M. Grosvenor


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James Purviance & Tim Flanigan

Silent auction table

Ginny Purviance & Richard Grosvenor

John & Mary Hodgson, Robbie Benjamin

Kristen Kitchen & Kim Kirby

Meg Jannotta & Val Allen

Mike Jilling, Katie McLaghlin, Carol Corriveau, Cathy

Robertson Del Nero, Paul Del Nero

Dennis McNamara, Lynda Adams, John Robitaille

Margo Waite & Rob Menson

The silent auction table

Star Kids selling raffle tickets

Nicole Brennan, Rajahnah Matra, Colleen Cotthirst


Michael Chapman, Frank & Rhonda Landers


Greg & Laura Oliveira, Cheryl & Harry Mrozowski


More fun auction items


David & Robin Appolonia


Flip flop quilt up for auction


Kristine Lowney & Cheryl Padilla


Mark Lowney & Barbara Humphrey


Krista Peterson, Susie Hill, Hadley Johnstone


Coleen Raposa & Kathy DeSisto


MaryBeth Klee and her stunning necklace


Karl Olsen & Andrea Petronello


The risotto station


Karl Olsen, Paul E. Petronello & father Paul Petronello,

Javier Valenzuela


Diane McNamara & Susan Killebrew

Star Kids onscreen


The raffle grand prize: kayaks!

Kate Greenman, Anne Davidge Chace, Tim Flanigan


Sign for the event


Tim Flanigan speaks


 It was a beautiful night!


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