- The Washington Times - Monday, September 20, 2004

There was something to astonish and delight guests of any age at Washington Life magazine’s 13th anniversary bash at the Mandarin Oriental Hotel Tuesday night.

“This isn’t the real world. I think I’m on another planet,” said 94-year-old Roberta McCain, mother of Sen. John, not quite believing that a trapeze artist was flying over her head as a waitress bodypainted in bright psychedelic colors offered her an hors d’oeuvre.

“This is really cool. I wish all my friends were here,” exclaimed Lily Greenway, 15, whose eyes grew wide as she and her mother, Abigail Adams Greenway, waded through billowing clouds of vapor in a room where desserts and martinis were served from bars carved from gigantic blocks of ice.

Other guests — we won’t say who — kept wandering back to a hallway where towel-draped models enjoyed massages from employees of the hotel’s fabulous spa.

“I didn’t want our anniversary to be a normal Washington party. I wanted something fun, sexy and avant-garde,” said Washington Life Editor Nancy Bagley, who likes to mix “a combination of uptown and downtown” types at events that are both “elegant and hip.”

She succeeded admirably judging by the 500-strong guest list that included Mayor Anthony A. Williams and council members Carol Schwartz and Jack Evans (on Election Day, no less), Reps. Sheila Jackson-Lee and Mark Foley, Kara Kennedy, Nina Auchincloss Straight, John McLaughlin, David Bruce, Andrew and Leslie Cockburn, Bitsey Folger, Dick Carlson, Washington Ballet Director Septime Webre, Garnett Stackelberg, Frank and Marcia Carlucci, Debbie Dingell, Mark Ein, Jim Kimsey, Mary and Mandell Ourisman, Rima al-Sabah, Michelle du Pont and the ambassadors of Yemen, Portugal, Denmark and the Netherlands.

“It’s a very unique diverse community with people involved in politics, diplomacy, high-tech business and the arts and I wanted the party — and the magazine — to reflect that,” Ms. Bagley said,

— Kevin Chaffee

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