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Vodka and Chopin

There were many reasons to attend “The Political Party” at the Embassy of Poland under the patronage of His Excellency, Ambassador Ryszard Schnepf – some less altruistic than others. Take the Vodka, for example, straight up or Mad Dog; take the lavish buffet prepared by the Embassy’s chef and desserts by Rare Sweet Bakery, gelato by Dolci Gelati, the Whiskey bar by 1776 Whiskey; or the swag bags by Beam and Malmasion…….. any one of these were enough reason to click on yes to the RSVP. Toss in Chopin by pianist Mary Anne Huntsman, add actress Melissa Fitzgerald of The West Wing and lots of Congressional Members and the Polish Embassy morphs into one of Washington’s best destinations.

But the real reason for the heavy guest list was to support Future Civic Leaders, spearheaded by John McCarthy. “Our innovative residential and non-residential leadership camps give low-income students the opportunity to come together and learn about collective problem solving. Disadvantaged students need to recognize that they have the ability to influence complex and meaningful issues that they care deeply about. All of our programs give young people the opportunity to identify real issues facing their community, and gives them the skills they need to address them collectively. Full civic engagement fosters the talents of all young people by letting them know that politics is a world available to them. If we want our Democracy to be truly representative we need to ensure that all young people have a seat at the table.” The Mission Statement