NEW YORK – Olympic gold medalist and World Champion alpine skier Lindsey Vonn (Vail, CO) kept her red carpet streak alive last week at the 2010 Met Costume Institute Gala Exhibition in New York, one of the Big Apple’s most exclusive events.
Post Vancouver, she’s presented at the Academy of Country Music Awards and snapped photos with Morgan Freeman, Betty White and Katie Couric at the White House Correspondents’ Association Dinner at the Nation’s Capitol as a guest of NBC. And most recently, the U.S. Ski Team athlete shook hands with Oprah Winfrey, Patrick Robinson of the Gap, and Anna Wintour, Editor-in-Chief of Vogue, who hosted of the Gala and Exhibition last Monday in New York City.
Vonn, along with husband Thomas, attended the event as a guest of fashion designer Tory Birch, whom she met last fall. Her table at the Met included Burch, music mogul Russell Simmons and New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning and his wife Abby. Pop superstar Lady Gaga was the headline performer.
“These opportunities are absolutely incredible and certainly wouldn’t have been possible for me without skiing,” said Vonn, who wore a gown personally designed for her by Burch. “I’m a big fan of Tory’s style, especially her shoes and handbags, and was lucky enough to meet her last fall. Then after the Olympics, she invited me to the Met Gala. It’s been such a surreal spring for me and I’m enjoying every second of it.”
Her Facebook fan page has rapidly become a gallery of Vonn rubbing shoulders with celebrities from film, music, politics and fashion.
“I feel like I’ve met every famous person that I’ve ever seen on TV or in a magazine in the last few weeks,” she said. “Sarah Jessica Parker was standing right next to me on the Met red carpet, then I turned around and there was J-Lo and Hugh Jackman. It’s been pretty cool.”
Founded in 1937, the Met Costume Institute boasts a collection of over 80,000 costumes and accessories, however due to the fragile nature of the items, the museum doesn’t have a permanent installation and instead opts for two annual themed shows – the biggest being the annual fundraising gala.
“I’m truly honored that Tory asked me to attend the event and even more excited that she made a gown for me,” said Vonn. “She showed me some sketches a while back and then we did a final fitting the day before the event. My wardrobe is definitely expanding lately.”
Vonn said she has a few more weeks of “rest” before jumping back into her normal workout routine in preparation to defend her three consecutive Audi FIS Alpine World Cup overall titles and two World Championship gold medals during the upcoming 2011 season.
“I’ve still been hitting the gym a few times a week, but I haven’t started really getting into it yet. This time of year is perfect for letting my body get a break, but I’ll be ready to start training full-time shortly,” she said.
But first, it was off to Los Angeles for the 17th Annual Race to Erase MS charity event on May 6 featuring live performances by Avril Lavigne and Heart, plus a celebrity fashion show by Tommy Hilfiger. The featured presenters: none other than actress Kristen Bell and Lindsey Vonn.