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International Debutante Ball, New York, NY

International Debutante Ball, New York, NY
Held biennially at the Waldorf Astoria since 1954, the International Debutante Ball is one of the most exclusive in the country, and the US ball that attracts the most debutantes from abroad.  It’s no surprise that former debutantes include First daughters and granddaughters (Tricia Nixon, 1964; Ashley Walker Bush, 2006), royalty (Princess Katarina of Yugoslavia, 1979), the offspring of American media moguls (Christina Huffington, daughter of Arianna, 2008), and the thoroughly blue-blooded Hadley Nagel (2010) whose family lineage includes two signers of the Declaration of Independence. In 2010, for the 56th time in the Ball’s history, 30 girls from 11 states and six countries were called to the stage in the Waldorf’s Grand Ballroom, where they bowed to the crowd and were formally debuted to society. Each year the evening is filled with ballroom dancing, filet mignon-eating, and lots of drinking (just soda for the kids), but it’s the girls from Texas, with their carefully practiced “Texas Dips” who steal the show. As their names are called and they step up to the stage, in a move that looks more Cirque du Soleil than black tie affair, these Southern belles keep their legs crossed at the ankles, bend over at the knees, and bow so deep that their heads almost touch the floor. Good thing for tradition—even as they bow these Texan acrobats hold tight to the hand of the handsome military man who is one her of her two escorts for the evening. [Photos via]

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