SPECIAL FOR THE AJT //

Stormy weather and an active tornado watch didn’t stop folks from turning out for the Atlanta Jewish Film Festival’s Opening Night Gala. Between live music courtesy the Atlanta Jewish Music Festival; a variety of delicious tastings cooked up by several great chefs Israeli and local; and the opportunity to bid in the silent auction for exclusive packages and items from many vendors; attendees had plenty of reasons to brave the rain.

Hundreds of folks ignored the bad weatehr that swept across Atlanta last week to take part in the opening night festivities of this year's AJFF. PHOTO / AJFF

Hundreds of folks ignored the bad weather that swept across Atlanta last week to take part in opening night festivities of this year’s AJFF. PHOTO / AJFF

A special “red carpet” entrance area set an upscale showbiz mood from the moment guests walked into the Cobb Energy Performing Arts Centre. VIPs enjoyed schmoozing, shopping and snacking in and around the Kessel D. Stelling Ballroom.

Among the restaurants participating were Aja, Alma Cocina, Bistro Niko, Davio’s, Goldfish, Lison, Lure, Pricci and South City Kitchen. Highlights of the auction included many luxury hotel and resort stays; a trip to the 2013 Primetime Emmy Awards; a Sonoma VIP Wine Experience; and a special VIP parking space at Lefont Theatre.

The first screening of the Festival, “Hava Nagila: The Movie,” followed the reception. Guest speakers included the film’s director and producer, Roberta Grossman, and WABE 90.1 FM’s Lois Reitzes.