There was no keeping down the voices at Hush Hush on Saturday night.
In fact, guests could fulfill a childhood dream of being as loud and boisterous as they wanted to in a library – without librarians shushing them from every angle.
That’s right; we got to party in the stacks when we hit the Bloor Gladstone Public Library for the second annual Hush Hush fundraiser event to benefit the Toronto Public Library Foundation.
Hosted by the New Collection, the speakeasy theme inspired a return to the Prohibition Period, which was reflected in both the detailed décor and the outfit choices of the guests.
Perks included gourmet fare and oysters from the beloved Rock Lobster, dished up by owner Matt Pettit himself, who was on site with a copy of his brand new cookbook. Other crowd pleasers meant an assortment of doughnuts from Paulette’s and an instant-photo station presented by Barrymore furniture, complete with a Barrymore couch. Guests opted to either use books or donuts as props (or both, presumably resulting in a few sweet and sticky pages).
Roaring 20s-inspired dancers moved flawlessly to the sounds of live jazz and posed for photo ops with guests. Spinning on top of bookshelves, the DJ played no shortage of very danceable tunes that inspired an impromptu limbo and had the dance floor still packed when we left around 1am.
Other highlights meant a dimly lit secret bar area within the shelves of books that was accessible via password only. Here you could get your hands on a specialty cocktail served in brown bags (an accessory that made a stark contrast to the impeccably dressed guests). There was also a typist/poet on site to produce on-the-spot poetry when given a single word.
New Collection is the Toronto Public Library Foundation’s young patrons group, catering to young professionals under the ago of 45. It offers members access to exclusive events like special lectures, programs, exhibits, and events presented by Toronto Public Library, as well as private behind-the-scenes tours with curators of the library’s special collections. Events have included notable figures like Douglas Coupland, Kelly Oxford, Irvine Welsh, Jeanne Beker, and Justin Trudeau.
Oh, and you of course.