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4,000 People Turn Out For Secret Dinner Party In Bryant Park

Organizer: 45,000 People Are On Waiting List For Future Events

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Imagine throwing a surprise dinner party for 4,000 of your new-found friends.

As CBS 2’s Hazel Sanchez reported, just such a dinner party happened Wednesday night in Bryant Park. The elaborate event had thousands lugging tables, chairs and food to a location that was a secret until minutes before they all sat down.

The diners waved white napkins to signal n amazing production and all a big surprise. It’s called Diner en Blanc, or “dinner in white” – a flash mob dinner party that originated in Paris 25 years ago and caught on in New York two years ago.

Guests dined in Lincoln Center Plaza in 2012, and have hoped that the High Line or the Statue of Liberty might be the site in the future.

“Thirty thousand New Yorkers put their names on a waiting list on the first year – 15,000 additional this year,” said organizer Sandy Safi. “So we’re at 45,000 people just wanting to do something special and different.”

Invited guests, in their required white wardrobe, supply their own tables, chairs, flatware and food. The location is kept secret until just minutes before the event, but everyone loves guessing.

To get to the final destination, guests are asked to meet their guides at different meeting places across the city.

The guide then directs them by foot or mass transit, lugging all their dining supplies to the big reveal. This time, Bryant Park was the secret destination.

But it was hardly a paper plate and bologna sandwich picnic in the park. The event was elaborate, with lights, fine china, gourmet meals and fine wine. And there were even live goldfish.

“It was exciting because a lot of people were curious. They kept asking us questions,” said diner Nadege Fleurimond. “It was really a fun moment. I’ve never done anything like this.”

So whoever said you can’t wear white after Labor Day is out of touch, because it is clearly the thing to do in New York City.

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