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Dressed to save: Breast cancer fundraiser draws upon 'Breakfast At Tiffany's'

By Stephanie Mlot

Thursday - 5/26/2011, 1:18pm  ET

Instead of breakfast at Tiffany's, it was cocktails at Colonial Jewelers, but there were still hundreds of Audrey Hepburns in Frederick on Wednesday night.

To help raise money for breast cancer research, more than 300 women in little black dresses, pearls, elbow-length gloves and tiaras channeled the late actress's classic 1961 role.

A crowd of Holly Golightly look-alikes gathered downtown for the "Breakfast at Tiffany's" fundraiser, which benefits the Hurwitz Breast Cancer Foundation at Frederick Memorial Hospital.

A cocktail reception at Colonial Jewelers on Market Street kicked off the event, packing women into the store for drinks, laughs and a look at the merchandise.

While most attendees paraded through the streets toward the store, Amy and Sarah Keating made an attention-getting entrance.

The mother and daughter rode their motorized scooter down Patrick Street, waving to the crowd.

"My mom (picked) the dresses, and I did the hair and makeup," Sarah said.

Attention to detail was important to Frederick resident Donna Betteridge, whose 1960s beaded purse and pearl necklace fit the occasion.

"We're having a great time," she said before the movie.

"It's remarkable so many people turned up, all with smiles on their faces," she said.

Her friend, a breast cancer survivor, attended the fundraiser for personal reasons, helping to support the Hurwitz Foundation.

In its second year, the event -- sponsored by Someone With, Colonial Jewelers and the Weinberg Center for the Arts -- grew substantially, and isn't finished growing just yet.

Paula Jagemann, founder and CEO of Someone With, which helps women with breast cancer acquire necessary treatment products, has big plans for next year's fundraising event.

"I've always wanted to do this event," she said Wednesday.

Jagemann, co-chairwoman of the "Breakfast at Tiffany's" fundraiser, helped to provide participants with costume accessories as part of the ticket package, which ranged from $65 to $95.

Laura Geil, a National Cancer Institute-Frederick employee, said she couldn't miss the event, a fundraiser for a cause close to her heart. One of six Fort Detrick employees, Geil endured the warm weather in a fur wrap for what she said was a good excuse to get dressed up.

"How many times do you see this many gorgeous women?" Elizabeth Bracey said, after posing for photos with her friend Terri Rowe.

Visiting from Lovettsville, Va., Bracey said she heard about the event on the radio and immediately told her friend she had to join.

"It's for such a good cause," said Rowe, who lives in New Market.

She said doing her part to give back to the community was a wonderful feeling. So was ogling the Colonial Jewelers merchandise.

"We did our round," she said of the store's cocktail reception. "We drooled over the jewelry."

In true Hollywood fashion, a red carpet was rolled out for the women, who lined up outside of the Weinberg Center for the Arts and flooded the theater for an 8 p.m. showing of "Breakfast at Tiffany's."

"It's just a fun, fun night out," Jagemann said.

The entire group was photographed together, to be submitted for a chance at the Guinness world record for the largest gathering of Holly Golightly look-alikes.

Audrey Hepburn "was an icon," Jagemann said. "Who doesn't want to be an icon, even for a night?"

Copyright 2011 The Frederick News-Post. All rights reserved.