And They Had a Buddha Barn Party

On Saturday evening, environmental/graphic designer David Gibson and comedian Rich Kiamco and threw an engagement party at their Catskills weekend abode, Buddha Barn.

Alas, it was raining like crazy, but about 80 guests mingled about the eclectic rooms and porches of the mid-19th-century Greek Revival house and enjoyed a potluck buffet that featured a fabulous ham, sweet potatoes with marshmallows, and innumerable tasty and colorful summer vegetable salads. My contribution was a big pan of Jamie’s Chicken—oven-braised chicken thighs smothered with garlic cloves, red and yellow cherry tomatoes, and basil leaves. I admit to feeling really flattered when several of the discerning guests praised it.

When the rain let up for a half hour or so, the engagement announcement was made in the exuberant garden, the winner of last years Catskill Harvest Garden Contest. Everyone celebrated the summer, Rich and David’s happy news, and marriage equality in general.

Guests wandered about the pathways through giant cannas, 8-foot hollyhocks, huge masses of daylilies, echinachea, monarda, phlox, sunflowers—most of which Rich grows from seed. David found the stone buddha, below, in Beijing, when he and I were both delegates at the ICOGRADA World Design Congress in Beijing.

When the rain started up again, it was time for the dessert buffet of scrumptious goodies, including a to-die-for red velvet cake, homemade chocolate pudding, and David’s mom’s blueberry-pear pan dowdy—made from, of course, berries from Buddha Barn’s own bushes and fruit from their orchard.

About writedesigner

Graphic designer, writer, and gardener Ellen Shapiro is based in Irvington, New York. A frequent contributor to design blogs and magazines including Print, Imprint,, Communication Arts, and Etapes, she writes about trends, issues and personalities in design, illustration, photography, and visual culture around the world.
This entry was posted in Dining In and Out, Food from the Garden, Private Gardens and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to And They Had a Buddha Barn Party

  1. Paula Kelly says:

    Thx for the report, Ellen-

    Fun to hear + see the Buddah Barn report! Such progress in their garden in only 1.5 mos!
    I hated to miss this gathering but we had tickets to Tony Bennett at the Jersey Shore that weekend.
    Hope to get to the next one- it’ll then be the (almost) one year wedding anniversary celebration!

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