The much-anticipated opening of Four Seasons Hotel St. Louis has brought to town a group of employees from the hotel’s other upscale outposts around the globe. Among them is the property’s general manager Thierry Kennel, who has worked for Four Seasons for more than 20 years, opening hotels in Jakarta, the Maldives, Nevis and Boston. He holds dual citizenship in Canada and France and has lived in 11 countries. He now resides in Olivette with his wife Sophie and their two sons, Andrew and Brandon.

Fitness for a cause…Celebrate Fitness, a workout to benefit breast cancer research and educational programs, will take place March 8 at 8 a.m. at the Washington University Athletic Complex. The fund-raising event, which last year attracted 1,500 people, provides participants the opportunity to choose between a variety of workout options, including kickboxing, yoga, boot camp, water aerobics and a 5K run/walk. Ladue News is a proud sponsor, and all net proceeds from the event benefit the Young Women’s Breast Cancer Program at Siteman Cancer Center. For more information or to register, visit

Paging Dr. O’Malley…LN writer Trish Muyco-Tobin and her husband Dave ran into T.R. Knight, the actor who plays George O’Malley on Grey’s Anatomy during a recent trip to Sonoma, Calif. While brunching at Girl and the Fig restaurant, Muyco-Tobin spotted the actor, who she reports was just as sweet as his Grey’s character, stopping by her table to give her a big hug and introduce himself.

A big move…Big Brothers Big Sisters Of Eastern Missouri will move into its new headquarters this year. The facility, formerly the Woolworth Building in Grand Center, was once a sight of division during the ‘60s, when civil rights activists protested the lunch counter’s segregated policy. Today, as headquarters of the popular mentoring organization, the building will embrace people of all backgrounds. The organization expects to be settled in its new digs by June.

St. Louis native and dancer Gina Barrera returns to town as a producer of Duets for My Valentine, an annual Chicago-based dance concert established in 1998. The show is Feb. 9 at 8 p.m. at The Roberts Orpheum Theater downtown and features professional dancers performing a myriad of dance styles. Tickets start at $20 and are available through Ticketmaster. The concert benefits Luminous Arts Productions, a nonprofit that provides Midwest artists with a platform to share their craft through performance, exhibition and educational opportunities.

A big buzz…Looking for a new hobby? The Eastern Missouri Beekeepers Association will offer a full-day course of professional instruction and open hive demonstrations for beginners and experienced beekeepers Feb. 23 at 8 a.m. at the Center of Clayton. Raymond Nabors, Ph.D., an experienced beekeeping educator and farm director of the Heartland Ag Network will present the course. Registration is open until Feb. 15. For more info, call 894-8737.

Congrats to LN Spicy Bits writer Amy Peck Abraham, who took home a prize at the Crystal Cajun Cook-off, held in conjunction with this year’s Mardi Gras festivities. Her recipe for Maque-Choux Gump Boats (corn stew-stuffed peppers with shrimp) impressed the judges. Want to try it for yourself? Visit and click on the Diversions tab to find the recipe.

Share the love…Students at Captain Elementary School are currently hosting the seventh annual ‘Valentine’s Day for Animals’ drive. The project encourages the student body and the community at large to contribute pet care items and monetary donations to a local animal shelter, which is St. Louis County Animal Control this year. The drive will conclude Feb. 14.

Congratulations to the nominees for the third annual Kevin Kline Awards, which were announced recently. There were 118 nominations given to 24 St. Louis theater companies. The Repertory Theatre of St. Louis led the nominations with 24, divided among eight different productions. The awards will be presented March 31 at the Loretto-Hilton Center in Webster Groves. Tickets are available by calling 276-8165.

Kudos to SSM St. Joseph Hospital Foundation executive director Rachel Covington, who was named to the cabinet of the Association for Healthcare Philanthropy, an international nonprofit headquarted in Washington, D.C.