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The Bronxville Conservancy’s 20th-Anniversary Gala Celebration a Success: See Photos PDF Print Email


By Ellen de Saint Phalle, Member, Board of Trustees, The Bronxville Historical Conservancy

Oct. 31, 2018:  Bronxville Historical Conservancy co-chairs Erin Saluti and Bill Zambelli had gathered 180 guests for the unveiling of a recent acquisition of a winter landscape painting by Henry Hobart Nichols.

CLICK HERE to see some great photos from the gala by photographer Kalil Salkey.

Following some introductory remarks by Saluti and founding lifetime co-chair Marilynn Hill, the velvet curtain was removed, and the crowd gasped to find a framed emoji cartoon rather than the original Nichols painting. Working quickly to secure the crime scene, Chief Satriale assured the crowd that the mystery would be solved and the painting returned before the evening was over. This was not reported on the Bronxville police blotter because this elaborate ruse was part of "Framed," the Conservancy’s 20th-anniversary gala celebration.


"Framed" gala chairs Erin Saluti, Suzanne Pratt Davis, Judy Foley, and Michelle McBride and their creative committee of Tina Adams, Hilary Blumenreich, Lisa Rao, Jennifer Russo, and Lyndal Vermette were the clever schemers behind the bogus heist, producing a genuine evening of entertainment and fun. Guests were treated to an interactive murder-mystery performance, threaded through cocktails and a sit-down dinner. Table assignments quickly turned into investigative teams competing to solve the crime and catch the culprit. Team members mulled about the room, collecting clues and interviewing suspects. The surprising suspects included Bronxville’s own Mayor Mary Marvin as Princess Vespa, Dale Walker as Laura Crafty, Betsy Putnam as Mabel, Annette Healey as Virginia Beach, Molly Bianco as Anita Bath, Peter Thorp as Luke Warm, Jon Davis as Max Power, and Scott Samios as Skip Rope.

After convincing the crowd of their alibis, the princess, Laura Crafty, Virginia Beach, Anita Bath, Luke Warm, Max Power, and Skip Rope were eliminated as suspects and applauded for their compelling performances.  Although turning in a terrific performance, Mabel, aka Betsy Putman, could not fool the crowd and was ultimately charged. With the crime solved, the original painting was returned and finally presented to the crowd.


Hill and art historian and curator Jayne Warman concluded the evening with the true and accurate account of the special painting and its artist. Henry Hobart Nichols (1869-1962), born in Washington, D.C., was the son of a noted wood engraver. He studied in both Washington and Paris. In 1910, he bought a large plot of land overlooking Sunny Brook in Lawrence Park West, built a house, and settled in Bronxville until his death. He contributed much to the artistic life of the village and to the New York art world. Nichols was highly respected among his peers for his integrity, sincerity, and high idealism. He served as president of the National Academy of Design, a trustee of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, and a director of the Louis Comfort Tiffany Foundation. Winter’s Day will hang in Bronxville Village Hall as a part of the Conservancy’s collection of Bronxville artwork.

Eleanor Pennell, a former member and longtime Bronxville resident, bequeathed the painting to the Conservancy. Pennell died in January of this year. The gift reflects her commitment to the Conservancy and the Bronxville community and serves as a lasting legacy inspiring future generations.

As guests left the gala celebration, each was presented with a postcard image of the Nichols painting, a box of chocolates, and the guest's photo mug shot, which was taken during the evening’s investigation. 

Pictured here:  At top: The committee that organized the "Framed" event; second photo, Winter's Day by Henry Hobart Nichols; third photo, William Zambelli, co-chair, The Bronxville Historical Conservancy.

Photos in article and in link by Kalil Salkey

Editor's note: As a public service, MyhometownBronxville publishes articles from local institutions, officeholders, and individuals. MyhometownBronxville does not fact-check statements therein, and any opinions expressed therein do not necessarily reflect the thinking of its staff.


Middle School Musical 'Honk! Jr.' Next Week

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By Nadine Brandes and David Fenner, Bronxville School Parents May 1, 2019:  Don’t miss Honk! Jr., a delightful adaptation of Hans Christian Andersen's beloved fable "The Ugly Duckling" on Friday, May...

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Books & the Arts Directory

Art Restoration and Framing

Fine Arts Gallery of Bronxville

The Fine Arts Gallery is a beautiful gallery in the heart of our village. It sells original art and specializes in local artists from Bronxville past and present. It provides high end custom framing, art consulting, restoration and appraisals. Appointments are available upon request. It also sells the Historical Conservancy Journals which include a history of the village as well as the artists who have lived here and are presenting living here ($20/copy).

99 Pondfield Road
Bronxville, New York 10708

The O'Silas Gallery at Concordia College

171 White Plains Road
Bronxville, NY 10708


Books & Culture

Bronxville Public Library

The Bronxville Public Library traces its origins back to 1875, when it was a small lending library housed in a room attached to the “Bronxville Model School.” The Library was officially chartered in 1906 and moved into the Village Hall Building. The needs of the library grew with the town and, in 1942, a new standalone building was erected, which is where the Library is today. Over the years, the Library was renovated and expanded to meet the needs of the community.

The Library has wonderful resources for adults and children and offers a comfortable and relaxing environment. The Library also houses a fine art collection, consisting principally of Bronxville painters and sculptors.

The Library offers special events, art exhibitions, and programs for adults, young adults and children.  All events are open to the public, unless otherwise indicated.

The Bronxville Public Library
201 Pondfield Road (Midland Avenue & Pondfield Road)

Womrath Bookshop

Womrath Bookshop is a located in the heart of Bronxville village. In addition to selling books, the store also sell children's toys and holds readings both at the store and elsewhere in the community, such as at the Library.

76 Pondfield Road, Bronxville

(914) 337-0199

Music & Performing Arts Schools



Concordia Conservatory

Concordia Conservatory, a preeminent center for music education in Westchester County, is a welcoming community where children and adults find lifelong inspiration and joy through learning, performing, listening to, and participating with others in music. Concordia Conservatory, a community outreach division of Concordia College, offers top quality music programs for early childhood, youth, adults and seniors. The Conservatory's vision is to enrich the lives of the people in our community through music.

Executive Director: Kathleen Suss

Concordia Conservatory of Music & Art

Concordia College-New York

Phone: 914-395-4507

Crestwood Music Education Center

Crestwood Music Education Center, founded in 1987, has established itself as one of the most reputable and premier music schools in Westchester County with well over 800 students studying piano, guitar voice, Suzuki and much more. Their philosophy is to create a very positive, stimulating environment that gives each student the chance for creative self-expression. They believe in the importance of having a world-class faculty with extensive education as well as the teaching and performing experience that can only found in America's finest music schools.

453 White Plains Road
Eastchester, New York 10709


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