Gabby Douglas on Correspondents’ weekend, enjoying her year on all the good guest lists

April 27, 2013
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Gabby Douglas at the New Yorker party Friday night. (Amy Argetsinger / The Washington Post)

Gabby Douglas, is it weird to be the youngest person in all these rooms?

Dumb question. “No,” she told us politely. “I think it is really fun.”

At 17, the reigning Olympic all-round gymnastics champion was decades below the average age at the New Yorker’s party on the rooftop of the W Hotel Friday night, where the crowd ranged from grizzled media heavyweights (Charlie Rose, Joe Klein, Chris Matthews) to Hollywood establishment (Gerard Butler, Sharon Stone) with some dewy young policy/journalism types to enliven the mix.

None so dewy as Douglas, in a demure black cocktail dress with a jeweled neckline and ever-radiant smile that she happily unfurled for photo after photo with VIP fans. Flanked by her mother and her publicist, she made the rounds in a handful of parties that her underage ID would ordinarily have kept her out of. But that gold medal has made her a coveted guest at a barrage of celebrity-studded events this past year.

“Let’s see, the Golden Globes, the SAG Awards, the Vanity Fair Oscar party – a lot of awards shows,” Douglas told us when we asked for a quick rundown. Okay, but what’s been the most fun?

Her eyes lit up. “I flipped in Times Square!” You what? “I flipped” — gymnastics style — in the middle of Times Square for a hidden-camera-style video to promote McDonald’s new Egg White Delight McMuffin, she told us. “No one was expecting it. It was so fun! You can see it on the Internet.”

You hear that, all you corporate execs in town this weekend? This budding young pitchwoman is a total pro. And take note as well, glitzy party hosts: You want Gabby Douglas – and everyone else – to have fun at your event? Let her flip.

Related: White House Correspondents’ Association dinner isn’t costly, but the parties are

White House Correspondents’ Association dinner complete coverage

WHCD photos, tweets, breaking news on “The Grid”

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Marie Elizabeth Oliver · April 27, 2013

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