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East River was granted Elaborate Fourth of July Fireworks Display

The Cosmopolitan Review

Yvonne Delaney Mitchell | 7/10/2014, 1:28 p.m.

Happy Fourth of July! And what a spectacular fireworks display by Macy’s to commemorate the occasion.

In front of thousands of people who lined the highway on the banks of the East River and thousands more who viewed the display on TV, it was quite a production. There was only one problem: While the fireworks blasted like bombs bursting in air to the musical sounds of the American patriotic songbook, there was not one song sung by a person of color. We all know that the Fourth is not the Fourth unless you have Ray Charles singing “America the Beautiful,” yet somehow, someone obviously overlooked including this version in the repertoire. Tsk tsk.

Personally, I think heads should roll for that one, as it was an insult to all of the people of color who had a strong hand in making this country what it is today.

Enjoying the Fourth just the same were JoAnn and Jim Skeets, who always have an open door for friends to gather. Also opening their doors were Kendal and Tracey Brown James, who had the neighborhood over to watch the fireworks on the beach at Sag Harbor, overlooking the bay. Mom, Alma Brown, the wife of the late Ron Brown, was there making sure the table laden with a variety of pies was just right.

Now that the weather is delightful, parties are being held outdoors whenever and wherever possible. One such event was held by Phoenix House, the group hosting its annual summer party in East Hampton at the home of Robin and Fred Seegal. The theme this year was “Triumph for Teens.” While cocktails were held on the lawn, Grammy-nominated recording artist, composer and music producer John Forte and the hip-hop group the Fugees provided the entertainment. The event raised funds to support programs serving thousands of young people and their families.

Congratulations to Tommy and Ashley Winkler, who just gave birth to baby girl Averry Elise. Grandpop Richard is over the moon, as this is the second baby girl for the couple. Happy birthday to Stanley Tarrant. The Jackson estate, located in the posh Sag Harbor section, is on the market. Welcome back home, Cheryl Chambers and husband Seymour James, who just returned from a whirlwind tour of South Africa. Congratulations to James, who has been appointed attorney-in-chief of the Legal Aid Society.

Stars representing a cross-section of the arts came out to celebrate the life and legacy of Gordon Parks at the annual Gordon Parks Awards Dinner and Auction 2014. The annual gala honors artists, musicians, filmmakers, designers and patrons of the arts in addition to raising funds for Gordon Parks Foundation scholarships and programming. Taking the podium was former Mayor David Dinkins, and among those accepting awards were designer Vera Wang along with Mellody Hobson and George Lucas, who received the Patrons of the Arts Award. Meanwhile, “It Girl” DJ and socialite Hannah Bronfman and Solange Knowles were most recently seen together when they both attended the launch of Gucci’s cosmetic line. Of course, they were both wearing, what else, but Gucci.