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CHUCK BENNETT

SC: Sing-a-Long raises near $50,000 for Salvation Army

Chuck Bennett
Special to The Detroit News

Sing-a-Long Luncheon raises almost $50,000 for Salvation Army

With a few robust performances of tunes such as “Jingle Bells” and “It Came Upon a Midnight Clear,” the Salvation Army did a nice takeaway last week at the London Chop House’s annual Sing-a-Long Luncheon. To help raise money for the Red Kettle Fund, Detroit’s classically elegant downtown restaurant raised the prices on the seats for this event. Richard and Jane Manoogian donated $10,000 to sit in the coveted Booth No. 1, and to sit at the table with Tom and Diane Schoenith cost a whopping $500 per. All other seats in the restaurant were $250.

Chanteuse Nicole New provided the serious entertainment, while chef RJ Scherer made magic in the kitchen allowing guests to indulge in anything on the menu. “We’re very happy that we can continue this worthwhile tradition,” said Ellena Gatzaros, whose family owns the Chop House. Among the guests were Gretchen Davidson, Ashley Crain, Holly Jonsson Panis, Lucia Zurkowski, Douglas Grech, Rosemary Bannon, Stefany Germack Kerzic and Sam and Katie Valenti. Nearly $50,000 was raised.

Franklin Wright Settlements’ dinner gala features Thornetta Davis

Kudos to the folks at Franklin Wright Settlements, who just celebrated 135 years of helping children and preserving families. During a dinner gala at the Belle Isle Casino on Saturday night, the organization’s CEO, Monique Marks, graciously led the party through dinner, awards presentations and a pretty darn good concert from Alexander Zonjic, featuring “Detroit’s Queen of the Blues,” Thornetta Davis. The organization presented two plaques posthumously to Gerald Smith and Judith Jackson.

‘Grand De$ign 2’ launch party set for Dec. 30

Local record producer djkage will collaborate again with one of Detroit’s premier Hip-Hop artists, Mic Phelps, to create an already critically acclaimed music project titled “Grand De$ign 2.” After a successful listening session at Mix Brick Town earlier this month, djkage and Mic Phelps are putting on a spectacular show for the release of “Grand De$ign 2,” on Dec. 30 at the Tangent Art Gallery in Detroit.

The show, which is headlined by djkage and Mic Phelps, will feature live performances from a “stacked” lineup that includes Macs the Realest, Bevlove, Chavis Chandler, Nick Speed and reggae artist Negus Arubis. A live art exhibition by Youngest Waffle and sounds provided by guest deejays DJ DASH and J House will provide the vibe for the night. Detroit’s “Alley & Eye” clothing brand and their unique collection of eyewear will be on display and giving out a free pair of sunglasses to the first 50 participants to arrive at the event. Doors open at 9 p.m.

Chuck Bennett is the creator of TheSocialMetro.com and is the Fox 2 News Style Ambassador.