Tea for Tails: No Barks, No Bites, Just Purrs of Delight

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Valerie Urry, Stephanie & Lincoln Chafee, Christie

Smith in front of Land's End

The lovely lawn of Land’s End, the home of Joe and Victoria Mele, was the setting for a “scrumptious” high tea to benefit The Potter League’s programs and building fund recently, and it was many old friends and generations of families greeting each other, including the Pells, the Butlers, Oatsie Charles, Helen Winslow, Frolic Weymouth, David Ford and David, Jr., and Dorrance (Dodo) and Anne Hamilton. The Pell youngsters were exuberant with their mother, artist Christina Pell Randall, at a large center table.


Patty & Mary Spigel with State Senator

Teresa Paiva Weed

Tea sandwiches, champagne, desserts, and truly creative hats were the order of the afternoon, and the original owner of Land’s End, author Edith Wharton, would’ve felt right at home with the gentility of it all.


Outrageous hats, including those of prize winners Judy McLennan and the animal skin worn throughout by intrepid Claude Newton, elicited comments, as guitarist David Enstone strummed at the edge of the tent. New York fashion designer Mary McFadden, fresh from the previous evening’s Art Museum Gala, made an appearance in her signature flowing clothing, and spoke quietly with Oatsie Charles, this year’s honorary chairman.


Sheila Reilly

In a sweet speech, Mrs. Charles lauded the work of The Potter League, and spoke about her dog Fusspot, now gone, as “the heart that beat at my feet.”

Outgoing Board chairman Sheila Reilly told the crowd that “the time is now” to give to the League, and announced the winners of the three fabulous raffle prizes. Executive Director of the Potter League Christie Smith and Pat Heller, Director of Development, worked ceaselessly with other volunteers, delivering trays of delectable treats. Hugh D. (Yusha) Auchincloss III  sauntered down the road just as people were leaving, greeting Nuala and Dallas Pell.

Jane Moore with Alison Vareika

Elizabeth (Betty Boop) Blake with Nuala Pell

Jimmy Coleman with honoree Oatsie Charles

Young Evan, Ella & Sophie Butler with

hostess Victoria Mele

Jana and Don Jagoe with Carol Hodges


Winkle Kelly in her chapeau


Ann Conner & Jan Gordon


Stephanie McLennan


Judy McLennan in her winning bonnet


Bettie Pardee chats with Genii Pell


Christie Smith, Executive Director of The Potter League, with Diane and Duncan  Johnson


Ridgely Beck & Christina Pell Randall


Pat Flynn & Katie Ushre, caparisoned in pastels


Claude & Gail Newton -- he won a hat prize, too


Friend and perennial style-setter Jean diBona


Teddy Aspegren & Robert Bailey


Edith McBean & Rod O'Hanley


David Enstone strumming favorite tunes


Jim Moore & Pat Heller, of Potter League


Allen & Mona Beitchman


Linda Naiss, Annamarie  Ringheim & Peggy Hunter


The dapper Paul Eddy


Holly Bannister & Linda Purdy


Edith McBean & the trés chic Kimberly Skeen-Jones


 Guests in their summer hats


Jonna Chewning having fun


Sharon & Philip Pelletier enjoying tea


Richard Nelson & James Michael


David Thalmann, with his signature trousers, chats with hostess Victoria Mele


Diane & Robert Beaver, David Ford, Sr., David Ford, Jr.


Rod O'Hanley with fashion designer MaryMcFadden


Helen Winslow in a summer frock


Sarah Gewirz & Victoria Mele


Deb Elliott in a fabulous hat!


Last year's winner Scott Winkler  brokering tickets


Mary McFadden & Oatsie Charles speaking privately


"The time is now!"


Happy van Beuren, Frolic Weymouth &

Anne Hamilton


Dorrance (Dodo Hamilton) in deep discussion


The spacious tent at tea time


Tea cakes, anyone?












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