With a dazzling backdrop of the historic First Bank of the United States bathed in red, white, and blue lights, the Friends of Independence National Historical Park celebrated its 40th anniversary Oct. 11 under a tent at 3rd and Chestnut Streets.
The evening honored Addie-Lou Cawood, who co-founded FINHP in 1972, and her husband, Hobie Cawood, who was superintendent of Independence National Historical Park from 1971 to 1991.
The Gala Celebration, co-chaired by Bill and Randi Marrazzo, Ed and Karen D’Alba, and Don and Karen Kaufman, began with cocktails at the former Visitors Center, slated to become the new American Revolution Center. Guests also took a look inside First Bank, which hadn’t been opened in 20 years.
Dinner, served under the tent, was an 18th century-inspired menu prepared by Brulee Catering by chef Jean-Marie Lacroix that included boneless braised short ribs with garlic mashed potatoes and roasted root vegetables, and brown betty for dessert. The nearly 300 guests enjoyed a tribute video created by WHYY, a lively debate between Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton, and a performance by the choir of the Philadelphia High School for the Creative and Performing Arts.
Eagles player Brent Celek chose the gala to launch his new venture, Revisit, which will benefit friends groups from around the country that support the national parks. Celek is initially creating partnerships with three friends organizations, with FINHP being the first. Revist is an online business that sells accessories made from renewable materials, such as a wide money band made of bamboo and iPhone and iPad cases. A portion of the proceeds from the sale of Revisit products will benefit FINHP.