One of the most fun parts of crashing a party is crashing other people’s conversations. On Saturday, January 31, 300 guests filled the galleries of Princeton University Art Museum for the Roman-Greco themed annual gala, though only one couple — Brett Downey and Nicholas Riggle (see photo at left) actually came dressed in togas. In the midst of our meanderings, we ran into Millard M. Riggs, a VP with Citi Smith Barney in Lawrenceville, who was regaling his good friend, Jack Chamberlin, chairman emeritus of Princeton HealthCare System, with stories about his recent business trip to Lithuania.
One of the highlights of Riggs’s trip, he said, was staying at the Europa Royale Hotel in Vilnius, and learning that internationall-renowned cellist Yo Yo Ma had stayed in his very room. There was even a plaque in the room, which Riggs said, he of course photographed.
But Chamberlin was quick to take on the hotel room fame challenge, offering that he had taken a business trip to China in June, 1982, when he was CEO of Lenox, to scan the countryside for potential giftware products. At the Jing Jiang Hotel in Shanghai, Chamberlin was put in the room former President Nixon had stayed in just a few years earlier.
The gala raised approximately $35,000 for the museum’s educations outreach programs. The fruits of one of these programs, “Mini Masters,” in which students at Stuart Country Day School photographed elements of the museum during a period of reflection, were on display in one of the galleries.
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