Saturday, February 1, 1997:†The "Because We Need One" Party, 1997's first party, was hosted by Mike Fierro, Happy Hour's self-anointed most eligible bachelor. Mike showcased his latest innovation, computerized DJing of pirated toons, to the amazement of those who attended. Party highlights included a brief appearance and quick exit by Mike's playgirl roomate, Betty; Mike's babe-magnet cat Moby; and a pretty active singles scene.
Saturday, March 1, 1997: Once again, Tom and Greg served up a mighty powerful fine brew. Held at the Team-Banzai Headquarters in Reston, the rehearsal party was a coming out for Greg and Suzanne. And the assist goes to Mike Fierro for the phone number, and the basket to Melissa for the match. Foosball, heated NCAA basketball discussions, and homemade bread and cookies rounded out the entertainment for the night. One can only imagine what the real farewell party will be like.
Saturday, March 22, 1997: "Have you tried the punch, damn...that stuff has kick," was the greeting used by those attending the first party thrown at Potomac House. Some never got past the punch bowl to discover a keg of Dominion Ale in the kitchen. But this party wasn't about beer (Tom Carstensen would have died had he come), relying on what some professional partygoers and social butterflies call "party peripherals," like conversation and room settings, instead. Whether it was endless chatter on diamond rings and new apartments in the study, gossip on the exploits of friends and associates in the kitchen, the latest in hightech news in the foyar, or inquiries on just what was in the punch in the dining room, each room seemed to have its own unofficial topic of conversation. Other headlining "party peripherals" included getting the official tour of the estate from Gus, prom-like portrait photography by Kyle, and diversified activities like zydeco dancing and Jenga (a game that doesn't involve drinking). Like the punch, this party had kick, but for those of you who remember some of Melissa's past all-night binge-drinking affairs, this one was a natural high.
Saturday, May 24th, 1997: The lease is up! A two year party tradition at the [9325 East Parkhill Drive] Rental House ended Saturday, May 24th, 1997 with Paulís and Tomís last beer & band bash. The masses began to gather in the front yard as early as 7:00 p.m. in anticipation of Paulís arrival with the kegs. Paul arrived with a half keg of Foggy Bottom and a quarter keg of Dominion to the cheers of many. As dusk settled, crowds of people filled the lawn and front room to hear Tube Dog play one last jam at the house. The celebration was underway, and the cops were on their way. The partyís frat-like nature--its public display of good cheer in the front lawn, the two visits from the cops, and keg stands--was a refreshing twist to the Rental Houseís last hooray. Though the Rental House was finally surrendered at 3 a.m. the party went on Ďtil dawn. Police Surveillance Photos.
Sunday, June 8th, 1997: The Happy Hour Group's first wedding reception was held at the River Farm Estate for Holly and Tom. The six hour event was filled with all the traditional wedding fanfare including the bouquet and garter toss. Winners, Mike and Lesley, gladly gave the bride and groom several years of good luck. However, the party did not end after the bride and groom departed on their honeymoon. Members of the bridal party secured the leftover liquor and kept the festivities going in the parking lot and then at DC dance clubs til Monday morning. Not bad for what began as an early afternoon wedding. Wedding Album.
Saturday, August 9th, 1997: Happy 30th Birthday Lisa! Nothing like celebrating an event on a 10 story tall building's rooftop overlooking the dazzling lights of the Nation's Capitol. Throw in a wonderful spread of food, beer, sangria, salsa music, and a 3 to 1 girl/guy ratio and you have the makings for one hell of a party. However, the high number of married and engaged folk (a sign of the times) kept this party respectable dispite the antics that eventually led to the undoing of Paul and wild display of affection towards Kyle by Crazy Legs. Party also marked the first public appearances of new couples including David and Lisa, Mike and Julie, and Kyle and Crazy Legs.
Saturday, September 20th, 1997: The Happy Hour Group's second wedding was held in Melissa's hometown in Connecticut. Unlike Tom and Holly who were engaged prior to the formation of the Happy Hour Group in February 1996, Brian and Melissa were the first of six couples to meet through the group. Their wedding marked Happy Hour's first successful match leading many to gossip about a possible "domino effect" overtaking the group. Many wondered who would be next in the succession. Brian and Melissa's reception was fun for all and well worth the trip for members of the Chevy Chase 9. Wedding Album.
Saturday, November 8, 1997: Wedding Album.
Wednesday, December 31st, 1997: Never seen a year go as fast as 1997. What better way to see out with the old and in with the new than a New Year's Eve gala in New York City. Thirteen Happy Hour goers made the the trek to the Big Apple, rendezvousing at Holly's Manhatten Hideaway. Memorable moments included Lisa and David, their hot summer romance still on fire, singing "Tubthumping," and Beto, Mike's Apogee protege, finding the perigee to Lesley's heart. And then the apple fell. Photo spread.
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