Bold & Beautiful
Celebrating spring with the ever-fashionable Flyers Wives
by Bill Donahue

It’s been a long time coming, but we have finally arrived to the Promised Land: Yes, spring is here. It’s the time of year when the flowers come alive, the weather turns pleasant and, of course, the Philadelphia Flyers head to the Stanley Cup Playoffs to compete for professional sports’ most coveted prize. To celebrate the season, we had four members of the Flyers Wives organization—Laurence Dionne (girlfriend of Flyers forward Sean Couturier), Dina Hall (wife of Flyers forward Adam Hall), Jessica Peczek (girlfriend of Flyers defenseman Luke Schenn) and Cindy Salvadore (fiancée of Flyers forward Steve Downie)—showcase bright, bold fashions from some of the top fashion designers and women’s boutiques in the city and suburbs.

Photography by Gary Mattie

Fashion styling by Mindie Barnett of MB & Associates

Makeup by Kasey Golden of Cheryl Stuart Makeup Artistry at David J. Witchell Salon, Spa & Boutique in Newtown

Hair by Jennie “Mackenzie” Albee of David J. Witchell Salon, Spa & Boutique in Newtown

Where to Find these Fashions
Aso Damisi

Bedazzled Boutique
218 S. Newtown Street, Newtown Square

Bernie Robbins Jewelers

Bus Stop Boutique
727 S. 4th Street, Philadelphia

Claire Dickson Boutique
545 Germantown Pike, Lafayette Hill

David J. Witchell Salon, Spa & Boutique
25 S. State Street, Newtown

Minkee Blue

Peter Kate Boutique
3830 Kennett Pike, Greenville, Del.

Terese Sydonna

Victoria Wright

Giving Back
The Flyers Wives work to enrich communities throughout “Flyers Country”

The Flyers Wives keep a full schedule. Besides working year-round to ensure the success of their signature event—the Flyers Wives Fight for Lives Carnival—the wives, fiancées and girlfriends of the Philadelphia Flyers work tirelessly, through fundraising and charitable projects, to help communities throughout the part of the world known as “Flyers Country.”

“We’re working all year long,” says Mary Ann Saleski, senior vice president of Comcast-Spectacor Charities, which is the philanthropic arm of the Philadelphia Flyers. (She is also the wife of Flyers great Don “Big Bird” Saleski, who was a key part of the Broad Street Bullies’ two championship teams.) “The carnival is our marquee event, but we do many things throughout the year and make sure that all our smaller projects are just as impactful.”

One such project is Flyers Charities Building Hope for Kids. With this program, the Flyers Wives help ease the burden for a chronically ill child in need, as well as his or her family, by going to the child’s home and renovating where necessary. In late March, the Flyers Wives, along with players, coaches and other members of the organization, unveiled the newly renovated home of José Toledo, who is currently recuperating from brain cancer. Michael’s Way, a Fort Washington-based nonprofit run by Chris McElwee, whose brother, Michael, died of leukemia at an early age, partnered with the Flyers Wives in this venture. McElwee’s construction company, Fastrack Construction Inc., helped create a fantasy bedroom, a remodeled kitchen and other improvements to Toledo’s Northeast Philadelphia home, while the Flyers Wives painted murals, hung curtains and provided other touches to surprise Toledo and his family.

“We give to hundreds of charities throughout the year,” says Saleski. “Each of the wives finds ways to contribute based on the talents she has. Doreen Holmgren [wife of general manager Paul Holmgren] is a master sewer, so she spearheads our relationship with [Fairless Hills-based] Quilts for Kids, which supplies handmade quilts to sick children. Something like this is a real commitment in terms of time, talent and effort. But when one of the wives gets involved in something she cares deeply about, it grows and becomes more personal. … Whatever the need is, wherever our fan base is, we are there to help.”

Saleski has been a key figure in building the Flyers Wives brand. The Flyers Wives Fight for Lives Carnival, which was her idea, has earned a reputation for excellence not only in the Philadelphia area but also throughout the National Hockey League.

“A lot of wives come to the team from other teams, and one of the first things they ask is about the carnival; it’s on the schedule just like a game,” she says. “They all know about it, and they can’t wait to be involved. Back when we first started, we had no idea what we were doing. We just had our 37th carnival, so it has become more than we ever could have expected.” —Bill Donahue