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With Trump a no-show, Mar-a-Lago friends left to occasion maskless with Rudy Giuliani and Vanilla Ice

No official clarification for the President’s early departure from Mar-a-Lago was given, although he stays consumed with efforts to overturn the election outcomes and tensions are ratcheting up within the Persian Gulf forward of the one-year anniversary of the US killing of Iran’s prime normal.

Without the President because the centerpiece, the wattage of Thursday night’s occasion was considerably dimmer. Performers whose heyday got here many years in the past — Vanilla Ice and Berlin — carried out from the ballroom’s primary stage. Guests angled for selfies with Giuliani, who was carrying a blue velvet tuxedo jacket, and Fox News host Judge Jeanine Pirro, together with personalities from the right-wing tv community OANN.

Instead of their father, Donald Trump Jr. and Eric Trump mingled among the many friends with their respective important others, Kimberly Guilfoyle and Lara Trump. Tiffany Trump additionally attended, although Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner weren’t seen.

Tables set for 10 individuals, with no social distancing, have been clustered within the ballroom with white floral preparations and candles encased in a sculpture meant to seem like the New Year’s Eve ball. The menu consisted of “Mr. Trump’s Wedge Salad” — the membership has saved “Mr. Trump” as an alternative of “President Trump” on the dish — cheese tortellini and Wagyu beef.

Many friends and entertainers have been left upset upon studying from CNN late Wednesday that Trump can be leaving Florida early. Ticket costs for the New Year’s Eve gala have steadily elevated since Trump took workplace, and reached as much as $1,000 this yr, an individual conversant in the matter stated.

Bookings for the occasion elevated when it was clear Trump would journey to Florida for the vacations after skipping his conventional go to for Thanksgiving. Guests and performers initially have been hesitant to decide to the occasion with out figuring out whether or not the President would present up.

As many as 500 tickets have been offered for this yr’s occasion, which is considerably much less — however not a lot — than in years previous. The Donald J. Trump Ballroom at Mar-a-Lago has a capability of 700.

The President had been anticipated to attend as late as Wednesday. But by the night, phrase had emerged that he and the primary woman can be departing early the subsequent day. Trump remained largely out of sight at his membership throughout his keep as he fixated on the election outcomes and the January 6 effort to delay certification of President-elect Joe Biden’s victory.

That left the occasion with out its normal centerpiece: a speech from the President and an opportunity to glimpse the primary woman.

Like different gatherings at Mar-a-Lago this yr, nearly no friends wore masks.

That supplied a bookend to the beginning of the pandemic, when a equally maskless party for Guilfoyle held within the Mar-a-Lago ballroom proved to be an early spreading occasion.

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