Why would one of the “Real Housewives of Orange County” host a bachelorette party in New Rochelle and invite anybody who wants to come?
“Why not?” says Tamra Barney, whose upcoming three-hour bash at NoMa Social will allow regular folks to schmooze with the reality TV personality as she toasts her upcoming wedding to cast mate Eddie Judge.
Tickets to the Feb. 27 party, which include Mediterranean tapas and an open bar, are $100.
Barney, who has more than 425,000 followers on Twitter, has been on the Bravo series since its third season. Her romance with Judge, a hot-tub aficionado with a fondness for candlelight, has been documented on the show since shortly after the pair connected at a party.
He famously proposed to her on Bora Bora with a diamond ring hidden inside a clam shell.
“It was kind of love at first sight,’’ says Barney, who has been married twice and has four children. “After we met, our eyes locked and it’s been so easy ever since.”
The couple plan to marry in June or July, she says. One imagines the wedding will be filmed for an upcoming episode of the show, though nobody’s talking yet about a spin-off.
We chatted by phone with Barneyat at her gym, CUT Fitness, which opened a few weeks ago in Rancho Santa Margarita — in yes, Orange County, Calif.
Q. So why New Rochelle, of all places, to have a bachelorette party? And why is this open to the public?
A. I love the East Coast. I have friends out there and I have a lot of great fans out there. People have really shared my life with me, and I get so many people so happy for me and sending me messages: “I wish I could meet you,” “I wish I could have a drink with you,” “I want to tell you what happened with my divorce.” I just want it to be a really fun thing, and nobody’s done it. If I didn’t have my fans, I wouldn’t be on the platform I’m on.
Q. You’ve been married twice before. Are you nervous about getting married again?
A. Why would I be nervous when I can just get divorced? (Laughs) The truth is I believe in marriage and I want to be a role model to my children. I don’t want them to say, “Oh, we’re living with Mom’s boyfriend.”
Q. Do you miss not being famous?
A. I don’t even think about it. I’m usually in a baseball hat and my workout clothes. People will recognize me, and my kids acknowledge it more than I do. For the most part, everybody is so nice. But I try to stay away from going to L.A. Orange County is so different. We don’t have paparazzi.
Q. We can assume you’ll be nice and friendly at the party in New Rochelle. I hear New Jersey housewife Jacqueline Laurita has already told you she’s coming. Anybody else we’d recognize?
A. Nobody from Orange County. But I’ve invited some of the New Jersey and New York housewives, so we’ll see who shows up.