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Ladies' elegant tea benefits GraceWay

Photo by Laura Williams

Photo by Laura Williams

ALBANY -- The area's littlest ladies and its more mature grand ladies will gather at the historic Shackelford House Saturday for the generational tea party "A Cup of Gratitude and Tea Graces," whose proceeds will benefit the GraceWay Recovery Residence in Albany.

For $25 donations, ladies will enjoy an afternoon of elegance that comes with an opportunity for even the youngest of the fairer sex to help out their sisters who have found some of life's obstacles in their pathway to happiness.

"This should be a memory-making Thanksgiving timeout for women of all ages who want to help out other women," GraceWay Development Director Liz Dixon said. "The girls can relax, do a little soul nurturing, while the guys are at home watching the game and eating leftovers.

"It's anything goes dress-wise; some will wear their Sunday school best, some little ladies will come in their princess costumes and we've got groups like the Red Hat Society, Sunday school classes and women's mission groups. Everyone will enjoy an elegant high tea, complete with scones, finger sandwiches, tea cakes, cookies and tea."

The tea party will feature two seatings with up to 100 guests per session. Tables for four, six and eight are available for the 1 p.m.-2 p.m. seating and the 3 p.m.-4 p.m. seating. Vintage black and white keepsake photos, to be taken by professional photographer Kenneth Bridger, will be available for a sitting fee of $75.

"It'll just be a great time for everyone," Dixon said. "We have one table of 10 reserved for a family of three generations who are coming to celebrate the grandmother's birthday.

"The photographs are optional, but they will make excellent holiday gifts. Kenneth, a native of Albany who just returned from Milan, Italy, is donating his time and expertise to help make the event a success. The photos will be staged on the front porch of the Shackelford House (at 1801 Dawson Road) with a backdrop of trees draped in Spanish moss that will add a touch of Southern flair."

Period props and costumes will be available upon request. Also, hostess Lynne Ranew Mertins has the Shackelford House -- one of Albany's most historic residences -- decorated for the holidays, and guests will be allowed to take their own photographs in the house.

For information or to make reservations, call (229) 446-4550.

"Each photo session pays for one day of recovery for a resident at GraceWay," Dixon said. "And each ticket is a third of a day. What a tribute it will be for the littlest ladies in the community to know their afternoon of fun helped a woman in need."