The Annual "Hat Luncheon"
In a popular annual tradition, stylish New Yorkers come to Central Park in bonnets for bounty.
May 2, 2012
Fashionable New York women know that the Easter Parade is merely a dress rehearsal. The actual Bonnet Bonanza takes place the first week of May when stylish ladies, (and some gents) show up in their best Chapeaux for the Central Park Conservancy's spring event, officially titled the Frederick Law Olmsted Awards Luncheon.
Undeterred by a heavy mist, over 1,200 guests came to the Conservatory Garden where a team of white-jacketed waiters brandishing party favor mint green Wathne umbrellas escorted them down the granite stairs. Guests sipped wine and toured the blossoms before lunch in a white tent large enough for 122 tables! Tiffany's sponsored the luncheon, which raised a record breaking $3.5 million this year.
Television cook Katie Lee arrived bareheaded, but Martha Stewart, Diana Taylor, Muffie Potter Aston, Audrey Gruss, Hilary Geary and her daughter-in-law Dolly and Bette Midler were among headliners showing off their headpieces. After last year's Royal Wedding, feathery show-stopping hats have begun trending. Look closely at the slide show for two versions of "Minnie Mouse ears" and a hat with the headline "Carpe Diem."