Diary of the Week: Le Grand Bal, Sophie Wessex, Saks honours the ballet and more

Toronto's style set went incognito for a masked ball at the Distillery's Fermenting Cellar in a bid to help bring an end to sex trafficking, care of Covenant House. With a swath of lace across her eyes, Suzanne Rogers chaired the black-tie masquerade, which saw the city's most fashionable donning clothing by Canadian designers such as Wayne Clark and Greta Constantine.

When Sophie, Countess of Wessex, touched down in Toronto on an official visit, Prince Edward's wife charmed the city during stops at a number of hospitals and the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair. In the evening on her second day, the patron of Toronto General Hospital attended the Partners for Discovery dinner wearing a black cocktail dress and the Tiffany bracelet she'd been given that day. Sophie snagged a few Blue Jays T-shirts for her children and mingled with guests at the event.


The Winter's Tale was the inspiration for a romantic dinner toasting the coming together of Saks Fifth Avenue and the National Ballet of Canada, a fitting theme considering the Shakespearean classic's place kicking off a season marked by the new partnership. A candlelit Daisho welcomed guests such as Saks president Marc Metrick, who gave the ballet's artistic director, Karen Kain, a gorgeous bouquet to celebrate her decade at the helm. Ballerinas in tutus circulated as guests sipped cocktails and enjoyed a special tasting menu.

Russell Peters took his beloved brand of humour to a special cause in Toronto as host of the 14th annual It's Always Something variety show benefitting cancer support haven Gilda's Club Greater Toronto. The Sony Centre welcomed Mayor John Tory, Jeanne Beker, Chantal Kreviazuk, Francesco Yates and more for an evening of laughter and charity. One poignant moment came when Lily and Ruby Tureski, who lost their young mom to cancer, addressed the audience about their experience with Gilda's Club.

Murdoch Mysteries star Yannick Bisson and his wife, Shantelle, welcomed guests to the Purple Party at the Drake hotel for the fundraiser's most successful event to date. Aside from raising a whopping $250,000 for childhood cancer research and support, guests of the TD-sponsored event nibbled on mini burgers and mac 'n' cheese while getting glam with touch-ups courtesy of Aveda, Civello and the Hazleton and experiencing the wonders of mentalist Mysterion. Childhood cancer hero Finn Turner told his story to the crowd in a touching moment, while fellow hero Jadyn Schill helped co-host the auction with Jay Mandarino.

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