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Story Last modified at 6:00 p.m. on Wednesday, May 4, 2011

A bloomin' good time
Chamber tea raises money in high style

Alaska Star staff


Paulette Anderson sits with her granddaughters, Bella Anderson (in her lap) and Cora Anderson at the Chugiak-Eagle River Chamber of Commerce's annual Chamber Tea on April 30. The girls sampled scones and tea in their Sunday best.
Star photo by Melissa Devaughn

If you don't know what a "fascinator" is, just ask anyone who attended the Chugiak-Eagle River Chamber of Commerce's annual Tea on April 30. The event, designed to raise money for beautification work at Eagle River's Chief Alex Park, featured a fashion show of hats, designed in large part by the Chamber's Merry Braham.

Among the eclectic collection of hats were the "fascinators," creative and decorative headpieces that look more like ornaments than traditional hats. They have been made popular in Great Britain, where following the Royal Wedding last week they were out in force.

Models during the show waltzed in wearing birds, large flowers, feathers, boas, giant leaves and any other creative concoction that was light enough to perch upon their heads. Afterward, the hats were auctioned off to the highest bidder in a fundraising effort to help pay for maintenance of Chief Alex Park, which greets visitors to downtown Eagle River as they drive into town.

Braham said the total amount raised has not been tallied yet, but based on the 130 or so people there, she's guessing it's the most ever.

This article published in The Alaska Star on Wednesday, May 4, 2011.