Picnic Basket Banter: Alicia Nathanson, Brendan Walsh and Brian LaPann

Welcome to the eight installment of Picnic Basket Banter, a weekly series profiling Philadelphians who are participating in Dîner en Blanc Philadelphia. This series puts volunteers and attendees of Dîner en Blanc Philadelphia into the spotlight, asking a series of questions about their ideal picnic, favorite places in our amazing city and, of course, what they will be packing in their picnic baskets. This week we are going behind the scenes talking with the creative minds who will capture the essence of the night and bring people to their feet to dance and sing throughout the evening. Alicia Nathanson is our videographer from Blossom Productions and Brendan Walsh and Brian LaPann from Mole Street Productions will provide musical entertainment.

Dîner en Blanc Philadelphia: What is your favorite spot to picnic in Philadelphia?
Alicia Nathanson: Wissahickon Park-near the Kitchens Lane entrance
Brendan Walsh and Brian LaPann: Rittenhouse Square or Fairmount Park

Alicia Nathanson Co-Owner/Creative Director of Blossom Productions- Photo credit, Alison Conklin

DEB PHL: What’s your perfect picnic beverage?
Alicia: Iced Tea
Brendan and Brian: Sangria or red wine

DEB PHL: Who would be the most interesting person (famous or historical figure) you’d like to share a picnic with- living or dead ?
Alicia: Steve Jobs
Brendan and Brian: Ben Franklin and Jimmi Hendrix

Photographed on Mole Street in Philadelphia, where their company was founded- Photographed by Sean Corbett Photography

DEB PHL: Do you have a favorite picnic memory?
Alicia: When I lived in California, we went berry picking along the coast and then, had a very memorable picnic by one of the most beautiful streams I’d ever seen in my life.
Brian: Proposing to my fiance in White Clay Creek in Delaware.

DEB PHL: What will be on your Diner en Blanc menu? Do you have a favorite recipe you’d like to share?
Brendan and Brian: Cornbread and fried chicken. Fried zucchini and onions with grated Parmesan cheese and butter.

DEB PHL:If you needed to put together a picnic basket for two in less than 30 minutes, what would you make/buy?
Alicia: Bread, cheese, various sliced meats, cornichon and a fig spread.
Brendan and Brian: Primo subs and Kenzinger beer

DEB PHL: What non-food items are always included in your picnic basket?
Alicia: A camera.
Brendan and Brian: Napkins

DEB PHL: If you were planning the first Diner en Blanc event in Philadelphia what would be your outdoor public space of choice be?
Alicia: Rittenhouse Square
Brendan and Brian: Independence Mall or Art Museum

DEB PHL: What do you plan to wear and what will be the hardest part about putting together your Diner en Blanc outfit?
Alicia: Thank goodness this event happens before Labor Day here. It shouldn’t be too hard to find a nice, white outfit.  It’s very exciting to think of possibly wearing all white even though I am unsure yet of the exact attire. We typically wear dark clothes or all black when we film events so, we can blend in more. Hence, this unexpected excitement over wearing all white.
Brendan and Brian: Shoes will be the most difficult but white linen pants and a nice comfy white shirt

DEB PHL: How long have you lived in the Philadelphia area?
Alicia: I was born in Philadelphia but, have lived here on and off for roughly 40 years.
Brendan and Brian: Brendan has lived in Philly since 2000 and Brian grew up in Woodstown, NJ

DEB PHL: What’s your favorite thing about Philadelphia?
Alicia: The views of the Art Museum during the day and the boat houses at night while driving on 76. Those sights never get old.
Brendan and Brian: It’s a walkable city and is affordable, an US historical epicenter

DEB PHL: What is your favorite restaurant in Philadelphia?
Alicia: Distrito
Brendan and Brian: La Viola Restaurant and Time is the best bar

DEB PHL: If you were to plan “the perfect day” of things to do for someone who was visiting Philadelphia for the first time, what would their day look like from start to finish?
Alicia: Breakfast at Sabrina’s, then a Mural Arts Tour via Trolley, a visit to the Barnes, a walk along the river and then, dinner at one of the many incredible restaurants that the city has to offer.
Brendan and Brian: Starting in Old City, Visiting Elfreth’s alley, hitting all the historical spots and then ending at the Art Museum after visiting the Barnes and City Hall.

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