Twenty-fifth Annual Black Orchid Weekend Program

December 6, 7, 8, 2002

Friday Night at the Movies
December 6, 2002 -- 6:30 P.M.
Maui Taco, 330 Fifth Avenue, Downstairs

  1. "Meet Nero Wolfe" is a very early adaptation, loosely based on Fer De Lance; VERY funny indeed.
  2. An interview with Rex Stout -- a video provided by his daughter, Rebecca Stout Bradbury

Black Orchid Assembly
December 7, 2002 -- 2 P.M. to 4:30 P.M.

Location: Bouterin, 420 East 59th Street
(a French Restaurant with Flair, in the shadows of the 59th Street Bridge)
Guest Speakers:

Dr. J. Kenneth Van Dover, noted author (including At Wolfe's Door: The Nero Wolfe Novels of Rex Stout) and Chairman of the Department of English Language and Literature, Lincoln University.

Margaret Happle Perry, a noted culinary authority, provided tips to the audience to help them succeed in the evening banquet's tasting contest of Sauce Printemps. Ms. Happle Perry is a trustee emerita of the Culinary Institute of America, formerly an executive with Pillsbury and Nabisco, and a food and nutrition editor of various publications including Redbook, Good Housekeeping and Ladies Home Journal.

Ettagale Blauer, Coordinator of the Assembly, presented an update on the Wolfe Pack's ongoing slaughter of establishments selected for Pack events. It seems that over the past 25 years, The Wolfe Pack has a suspiciously high incidence of restaurant closings immediately following pack events at the establishments.

Swap 'N Shop -- Jan & Steve Schwartz assembled a fabulous collection of Wolfean Gear and Wolfeans swapped and shopped!

Refreshments -- Coffee & a Special Hot Tart prepared by Chef Bouterin, as well as home made cakes and cookies from Wolfe Pack members.

December 7, 2002 -- 6:30 P.M.

Location: Bouterin, 420 East 59th Street

  • A Tasting Contest of Sauce Printemps
  • For each attendee:
    • a Commemorative Pilsner Glass imprinted with the Wolfe Pack's Logo
    • Courtesy of the Stout Family -- a match book imprinted on the front with the Pola Stout logo and on the back with "Nero Wolfe by appointment only" (Cool!)
  • Dinner featuring the French Banquet from Too Many Cooks (click to view -- the menu)
  • Guest Speaker: Barbara Benjamin, Personal Secretary to Rex Stout while he served as head of The War Writers Board
  • Attendance by members of Mr. Stout's family and their friends:
    • Rebecca Stout Bradbury and Bill Bradbury (daughter and son-in-law)
    • Sue and Bill Oelman (Rebecca & Bill's friends who met Mr. Stout frequently at High Meadow)
    • Rachel and Jeff Theilacker (Rebecca & Bill's daughter and son-in-law)
    • Chris Maroc (Grandson of Rex Stout)
    • Liz Maroc McAuliffe (Rex Stout's granddaughter)
And to the delight of the the attendees Bill Bradbury, Chris Maroc and both Bill and Sue Oelman provided anecdotal reminisces of Mr. Stout to the assembled and answered questions.

Fun and Frivolity:

  • song parodies
  • quizzes provided by the Pack's Grand Mistress of puzzlements, Ms. Tenby Storm
  • with wine par excellence toasting and hoisting provided by:
    • Kevin Gordon to Mr. Wolfe
    • Deb Montague to Mr. Stout
    • Michael and Aaron Rosenblum to Archie Goodwin
    • Aileen Schumacher to Fritz
    • Dan Rogers to The Other
    • Unofficial Toast -- Ellen Krieger, Werowance Emerita and founder, to The Pack
    • Unofficial Toast -- Gretchen Taylor Grady to The Pack and Mr. Stout

Sunday Brunch Hunt
December 8, 2002 -- 11:00 A.M.

Where: Downtown Manhattan -- Commencing at the City Hall Fountain in City Hall Park (South of City Hall) and culminating in brunch at Il Porto at 11 Fulton Street, South Street Seaport.

Highlights of The Brunch Hunt: Similar to a scavenger hunt, but the ultimate goal is to find the restaurant for brunch. Once again, we did NOT lose anyone. With the help of sometimes easy and sometimes impenetrable clues, the five teams of scavengers found the elusive sites:

  • the Bowling Green Bull (aka The Wall Street Bull)
  • Rochester Big and Tall at Beaver and Pearl (oops, it changed into a different men's clothing store in the past month!)
  • the New York Trial Lawyer's Association Building at 15 Beekman (ok, so it was sort of hard to find)
  • the seemingly lost brunch location -- Il Porto restaurant on Fulton Street at South Street Seaport, featuring a glass enclosed room with a view of the Tall Ship and the Seaport and a selection of brunch items and liquid refreshment.