LN’s own design editor ALAN E. BRAINERD and his business partner, MARIA CLIFFORD, were among a privileged few who recently attended the highly anticipated auction of socialite LILLY PULITZER’s estate in West Palm Beach. Brainerd and Clifford, co-owners of Great Estates, were able to secure seats in the second row of the packed auction house for the sale of items from the fashion icon’s Palm Beach compound. Among Brainerd’s acquisitions for the day: three LILIAN MACKENDRICK watercolors and a charming, lidded cabbage box to add to his majolica collection. For her part, Clifford secured Chinese Chippendale cocktail and side tables for her living room.

Almost 300 lots were up for bidding, including figurines, vases, fine art, painted plates, a Persian rug, outdoor sculptures like the 7-foot-tall replica of the Statue of Liberty, and Pulitzer’s own canopy bed. Pulitzer, who built an empire with her bright, colorful clothing line, passed away last year at age 81.

As Brainerd sums up, "What a great experience to have as a colorful Lilly memory!" 

FOREST PARK FOREVER is the recipient of a $5-million gift from EMERSON, the largest ever from a publicly traded company. The money will be used for endowment and capital improvement projects to fulfill the Park’s master plan.

Meanwhile, THE MUNY has announced that WORLD WIDE TECHNOLOGY has made a leadership gift of $150,000 to become the first-ever Muny Season Presenting Sponsor. The gift allows The Muny to invest in artistic growth, as well as advance its community engagement and free seats programs.

Bravo to MICHAEL and NOÉMI NEIDORFF, who recently were honored by OPERA AMERICA with its 2014 Trustee Recognition Award. The recognition honors the couple’s longtime exemplary leadership, generosity and audience-building efforts to benefit OPERA THEATRE OF SAINT LOUIS. The Neidorffs were among only four recipients from across the county who were recently honored at a private club in New York City by Opera America, the national service organization for opera.

Kudos to the local ALS ASSOCIATION. The St. Louis Regional Chapter was named the Chapter of the Year during the group’s annual conference in San Diego. The local branch serves more than 400 living with ALS (or Lou Gehrig’s disease) in eastern Missouri and central and southern Illinois. In addition to the top prize, the chapter also received the Outstanding Walk Program award for its successful Walks to Defeat ALS in St. Louis and Springfield, Ill., which raised a combined $525,000 last year.

Make plans to join us for JUNIOR LEAGUE OF ST. LOUIS’ fourth annual A Gathering Place Kitchen Tour on Saturday, April 26. Self-guided tours run from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m. through six spectacular and innovative kitchens along St. Louis’ central corridor. The tour is one of the biggest fundraisers for the organization, which is celebrating 100 years of service to the community this year. Tickets are $35 in advance or $40 at the door; or $65 for both the Kitchen Tour and the Toast of the Tour pre-party at Interior Design Center on April 25. They’ll be available beginning next week by calling 822-2344 or visiting jlsl.org. Ladue News is a proud Print Media Sponsor of A Gathering Place Kitchen Tour.

You say potato…and we say, make it fingerlings! This month, try the first-ever Ladue News Spring Salad at BIXBY'S at the Missouri History Museum. The salad combines frisee, watercress, local asparagus, oyster mushrooms and fingerling potatoes with Champagne vinaigrette, and is topped with chevre and poached local eggs. The Ladue News Spring Salad is available through the end of March.