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CLO Ambassadors' annual Wine Tasting draws record crowd

Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review - Lisa Woods and Stephen Bloomburg at the Pittsburgh CLO Ambassadors 16th Annual Wine Tasting and Silent Auction at the Duquesne Club, Downtown, Friday. Photo taken March 1, 2013.
<div style='float:right;width:100%;' align='right'><em> Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review</em></div>Lisa Woods and Stephen Bloomburg at the Pittsburgh CLO Ambassadors 16th Annual Wine Tasting and Silent Auction at the Duquesne Club, Downtown, Friday. Photo taken March 1, 2013.
Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review - Fred Leech and Christina O'Toole at the Pittsburgh CLO Ambassadors 16th Annual Wine Tasting and Silent Auction at the Duquesne Club, Downtown, Friday. Photo taken March 1, 2013.
<div style='float:right;width:100%;' align='right'><em> Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review</em></div>Fred Leech and Christina O'Toole at the Pittsburgh CLO Ambassadors 16th Annual Wine Tasting and Silent Auction at the Duquesne Club, Downtown, Friday. Photo taken March 1, 2013.
Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review - John Williams and Jane Dixon at the Pittsburgh CLO Ambassadors 16th Annual Wine Tasting and Silent Auction at the Duquesne Club, Downtown, Friday. Photo taken March 1, 2013.
<div style='float:right;width:100%;' align='right'><em> Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review</em></div>John Williams and Jane Dixon at the Pittsburgh CLO Ambassadors 16th Annual Wine Tasting and Silent Auction at the Duquesne Club, Downtown, Friday. Photo taken March 1, 2013.
Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review - Leah and Paul Ohodnicki at the Pittsburgh CLO Ambassadors 16th Annual Wine Tasting and Silent Auction at the Duquesne Club, Downtown, Friday. Photo taken March 1, 2013.
<div style='float:right;width:100%;' align='right'><em> Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review</em></div>Leah and Paul Ohodnicki at the Pittsburgh CLO Ambassadors 16th Annual Wine Tasting and Silent Auction at the Duquesne Club, Downtown, Friday. Photo taken March 1, 2013.
Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review - Helen Wylie at the Pittsburgh CLO Ambassadors 16th Annual Wine Tasting and Silent Auction at the Duquesne Club, Downtown, Friday. Photo taken March 1, 2013.
<div style='float:right;width:100%;' align='right'><em> Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review</em></div>Helen Wylie at the Pittsburgh CLO Ambassadors 16th Annual Wine Tasting and Silent Auction at the Duquesne Club, Downtown, Friday. Photo taken March 1, 2013.
Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review - Tami Andrus and Van Kaplan at the Pittsburgh CLO Ambassadors 16th Annual Wine Tasting and Silent Auction at the Duquesne Club, Downtown, Friday. Photo taken March 1, 2013.
<div style='float:right;width:100%;' align='right'><em> Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review</em></div>Tami Andrus and Van Kaplan at the Pittsburgh CLO Ambassadors 16th Annual Wine Tasting and Silent Auction at the Duquesne Club, Downtown, Friday. Photo taken March 1, 2013.
Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review - Philip Ferland (left) and Doug Nolder at the Pittsburgh CLO Ambassadors 16th Annual Wine Tasting and Silent Auction at the Duquesne Club, Downtown, Friday. Photo taken March 1, 2013.
<div style='float:right;width:100%;' align='right'><em> Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review</em></div>Philip Ferland (left) and Doug Nolder at the Pittsburgh CLO Ambassadors 16th Annual Wine Tasting and Silent Auction at the Duquesne Club, Downtown, Friday. Photo taken March 1, 2013.
Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review - Robert Morris, Clyde Jones, Katherine Biggs and Jason Biggs (l-r) at the Pittsburgh CLO Ambassadors 16th Annual Wine Tasting and Silent Auction at the Duquesne Club, Downtown, Friday. Photo taken March 1, 2013.
<div style='float:right;width:100%;' align='right'><em> Andrew Russell | Tribune-Review</em></div>Robert Morris, Clyde Jones, Katherine Biggs and Jason Biggs (l-r) at the Pittsburgh CLO Ambassadors 16th Annual Wine Tasting and Silent Auction at the Duquesne Club, Downtown, Friday. Photo taken March 1, 2013.

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Sunday, March 3, 2013, 9:00 p.m.
 

“People are ready for this. It's Friday, they can come straight after work, and just unwind,” said Helen Wylie as she surveyed the record-shattering crowd of 525 on March 1, leaving little more than elbow room at the Duquesne Club for the CLO Ambassadors' annualWine Tasting & Silent Auction.

A sellout more than a week in advance, “We had so many people emailing and calling for tickets after we had sold out,” added Stephen Bloomburg, who co-chaired the evening withLisa Woods. The mood was nothing short of jubilant for those intent on embracing a glass-half-full mentality.

“I've got one glass of wine. I'm looking to have a whole lot more,” said first-timer Jason Biggs with his wife, Katherine, as they caught up with Clyde Jones and Robert Morris.

Mini-cliques of conversation encouraged pods of urban family reunions, a welcomed break out of winter hibernation for Ambassador prez Fred Leech, Jennifer andJason Ross, Christina O'Toole andDoug German, Peter Germain, Ned Bartley, Jennifer Jack Retter andRyan Retter, John and Dara Henne, Van Kaplan, Gigi Saladna, Robin Randall, Leah and Paul Ohodnicki, Jane Dixon, John Williams and Fred Mercer.

Meanwhile, much ado about the grand prize raffle that offered a coup de grace — read: trip for two to Paris — had ticketholders lightheartedly (with just a hint of a take-no-prisoners mentality) staking their claim long before the winner was announced.

“All I know is that it wasn't me,” lamented David Bush (with Tim McVay).

Throughout the evening, more than 30 different varieties of the red, white and sparkling were poured, although by 10 minutes to 9 p.m., someone tripped the alarm that the house had been exhausted of its entire supply of red.

“That's a good thing! That's what happens when you have a sellout crowd!” Wylie laughed.

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