Thousands attend secret Diner En Blanc event

Christie Ileto Image
Friday, August 18, 2017
Thousands attend secret Diner En Blanc event
Thousands attend secret Diner En Blanc event. Christie Ileto reports during Action News at 11 p.m. on August 17, 2017.

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Thousands of people converged on a secret location for Diner En Blanc Thursday night.

A sea of white packed X Street.

"I had no idea. I didn't know if it was going to be Center City," Connor Higgins of Logan Square said.

But it was Franklin Park that stole the show. A record number of 5300 guests dressed in white, scored a coveted seat to the 6th annual Diner En Blanc.

"We brought shrimp cocktail, we brought mini chocolate cakes and lots of champagne," one guest said.

"It's nice to have an elegant dinner and dance with friends," Lorraine Stuart of Mount Airy said.

Marquita Treadwell of Bryn Mawr, Pa. said, "We went over the top last year, so we wanted to settle down."

This is subtle? Crystals are subtle, Action News asked. "I guess so," (laughs) Stuart.

With 42,000 people left on the wait list, this year's event is the largest of its kind in North America - and with the tragic terrorist attack in Barcelona fresh on everyone's mind, police and event organizers weren't taking any chances with security.

Co-host Natanya Dibona said, "Homeland security instituted procedures where we block people off in the street. Here it's with our buses and police vehicles. We feel very safe that we've secured all our areas."

Inside is dinner, games and dancing.

A couple even got engaged tonight.

Elizabeth Livingston of Rittenhouse said, "Here you have to bring your inner child...It's a playground for everyone."

Emily Griesing of Center City said, "That's the whole fun of it. Everything is so structured in everything we do, it's nice to have something be up to someone else, be spontaneous because often we don't do that."

And if you didn't get to attend this year - there's always next year.


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