From the scissor lift, guests had the opportunity to take in the extraordinary view of Philadelphia's nighttime skyline, framed by the catenary of the old Reading Viaduct. Photo credit: Dan King

On October 9th, Friends of the Rail Park collaborated with the Liao Collection and Threenineteen to host an intimate cocktail reception benefitting Friends of the Rail Park. Attended by some of the organizations biggest donors, sponsors and supporters, the evening began at the Liao Collection, 310 N 11th Street, where Michelle Liao’s extraordinary gallery of Asian antiques was the setting for conversation over hors d’oeuvres, wine, and WhistlePig rye whiskey with wonderful performances by the dancers and musicians of Pasión y Arte Flamenco Co.

Guests enjoyed an incredible exhibition of works juried by well-known artists, Sarah McEneaney and Zoe Strauss at Threenineteen, the new design studio on the first floor of the Vox Populi building in Callowhill, Photo credit: Dan King



Across the street at 319 N 11th Street, Threenineteen received guests in their new gallery space featuring a show of works by nine artists, New Sight, juried by Zoe Strauss and Sarah McEneaney. There, attendees were treated to sparkling wine and desserts and an opportunity to purchase artwork from the show with 30% of the proceeds benefitting Friends of the Rail Park.

One of the highlights of the evening was something most unexpected. Directly across the street from both galleries is a section of the Reading Viaduct that crosses over Wood and Carlton Streets. Between those two tunnels a platform scissor lift was positioned to raise guests 30’ in the air to get a good view of the surface of the viaduct and the extraordinary sunset and Center City views that can be seen beyond it.

Two-by-two, attendees ventured high above the street to the level if the Reading Viaduct to take in an 'elevated' view of the sunset. Photo credit: Dan King

Two-by-two, attendees ventured high above the street to the level if the Reading Viaduct to take in an 'elevated' view of the sunset. Photo credit: Dan King

Mid-way through the evening, guests gathered at the Liao Collection to hear Sarah McEneaney speak about the art exhibition and the organization's efforts, followed by an update from Paul Levy on the status of Phase One and the impact the Rail Park will have on our city.

Between tickets, art sales, sponsors and donations, tens of thousands of dollars were raised and, more importantly, the evening was filled with buzz and excitement for the momentum that the organization and the Park are gaining and the genuine desire of everyone in attendance to help make the Rail Park a reality.

Check out the slideshow below, which features more photographs from Dan King Photography. The event was also covered by photographers from Philadelphia Style Magazine and Philly Chit Chat.

This event was made possible with very generous support from Blue Cadet, BOK Building and The Garden Collaborative.

A special thanks to our friends and generous supporters at Catering by MilesGreensgrow, Liao CollectionMoore Brothers Wine CompanyThreenineteen and WhistlePig.

And last but certainly not least, a heartfelt thanks to the event host committee including Brad Baer, Michael Garden, Jennifer Hawkes, Michelle Liao, Liz Maillie, Sarah McEneaney, Lindsey Scannapieco, Tory Savery John Struble and Trudy Watt; and to our volunteers including Katie Baer, Gail Bower, Sunanda Ghosh, Amanda Branson Gill, Caleb Heisey, Chessia Kelley, Taylor Knoche, Jamil Larkins, Eileen Marolla, Peter McBride, Debra Ward and Chris Wood.

Friends of the Rail Park is grateful to all those who joined us on October 9th and to the sponsors and volunteers who made the evening possible — a heartfelt thanks to each and everyone one of you!