JUST IN: Saint Valentine’s Day Luncheon And Fashion Is Happening Tomorrow “No Matter The Weather”

St. Valentine's Day Luncheon 2010

Remember last year’s Saint Valentine’s Day Luncheon and Fashion Show? Sure, you do. It was the one that ended with the ladies heading to their cars as Dallas got hit by a wintry blast. Ah, but the ladies had Lady Luck on their committee and managed to pull the whole thing off before things got grim.

Once again the gals are being threatened with snowfall, but they’re absolutely fearless. They just sent word that tomorrow’s event at the Hilton Anatole is a definite “GO!” At the recent patrons party, they announced that they had a back-up plan — slumber party at the Anatole the night before. Wonder if they’ll be telling ghost stories tonight?

Crawford Brock

Or, they just might be writing thank you notes to Stanley Korshak’s Crawford Brock. You ask why? Well, this info from the committee is pretty self-explanatory:

“For more than 10 years, Crawford Brock of the renowned retail outlet, Stanley Korshak has been an integral part of the Saint Valentine’s Day Luncheon and Fashion Show. Not only has Stanley Korshak been a major cash sponsor of this event, donating over $600,000 in cash alone since 2002, Crawford and his store have provided in kind donations as well that have significantly decreased the expenses associated with this magnificent production. In addition, as the Fashion Presenting Sponsor, Crawford Brock and the team at Stanley Korshak, have been dedicated to supporting the mission of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Whether it be through underwriting production costs, providing stylists and models, securing and flying in designers such as this year’s designer, Carolina Herrera or through hosting kickoffs and events to promote the Luncheon and Fashion Show, their support has helped create a one of kind event that every Dallasite wants to be a part of while raising vital funds for cancer research. We would like to nominate Crawford Brock and Stanley Korshak for the Partners Against Leukemia & Lymphoma Award as they truly are a partner in the fight against blood cancers.”

Super Bowl XLV Wrap Up: Media Partying With The Golden Oldies

Forget football. Name dropping has been the best sport in the area for weeks. Top-of-the-food-chain pr firms from NYC, LA and Chicago have been inundating Dallas with  heart-stopping names as part of the Super Bowl XLV festivities. Hey, wake up, big time pr types. We read the Enquirer and watch Extra!, too. Ain’t no Beverly Hillbillies living in this ZIP code. As the clock ticked away, it became obvious to oldtimers that some dropped names were pretty real and impressive and others were promoters’ pie-in-the-sky wish lists.

In covering celeb type events you came to the realization that —

  1. There are two ways to “encounter” the VIP’s: You can work the red carpet for brief one-on-ones with the celebs, or, if you’re lucky to be allowed in with the housebroken guests, you can chum around with them and pick up tidbits.
  2. There are as many breakfast encounters as there are homeless people in the Park Cities.
  3. Social media is the fax machine of 2011.
  4. The good local pr peeps can hold their own any minute of the day with the coasties types.
  5. A lot of locals took their “events” way too seriously, actually believing that this event would trump the second coming of Tom Landry.

With all of this in mind, here is the first installment of the Super Bowl Week roundup celebrity coverage. It shows how the media isn’t all that exciting when put together with no news to cover.

TUESDAY

8:00 p.m. — Media Party at House of Blues

With the first brush of frigid air hitting the Dallas area and with more on the horizon, the media gathered at Cowboys Stadium to interview the Packers and the Steelers. After a long day at the office, the media needed to unwind and the North Texas Super Bowl Committee was all ready to help them through the night. The spot to unwind was the House of Blues wedged between the West End and Victory. Say, isn’t that the 7/11 of entertainment venues? But we digress.

To accommodate the barely-on-an-expense-account media, organizers swore they had “given out valet passes for the House of Blues. Sometime we move so fast on these things.” Alas, those media that didn’t get the “valet passes” did get hit with a $30 parking charge.

North Texas Super Bowl spin meisters didn’t stop here. They said that despite the freezing weather and professionals’ “Big Chill” predictions, “We’ll be all right; it’ll be 60 degrees by game day.” Oops! (Actual Sunday temperatures hit a whopping 53 degrees.) Sounded a little like the folks who swore that the Titanic was unsinkable.

Charlotte Anderson and Gene Jones

Charlotte Anderson, there with Mama Gene Jones, said: “I can’t believe it’s here, after five years!” She hugged and chatted with JB Hayes, who just got back from Davos, Switzerland  and was looking forward to being at the big host committee party at Billy Bob’s in Fort Worth later in the week.

Once inside it was a pack of media types, and there is nothing more interesting than watching members of the media partying. There was the younger generation with fingers and thumbs texting about who was there and what they were drinking. There was the older generation with spit in their jaws ready to spittoon the first younger generation that asked them about the good old days. While journalist Olympians Pat Summerall and other Blackie Sherrod award honorees were upstairs having a private dinner, the action in the main rooms included:

  • Writer Art Stricklin mentioned a “book” that’s being done on the Super Bowl by the local host committee. It will be the first such project for a Super Bowl. (Editor’s note: After reviewing the actual Super Bowl Week, they might want to rethink that one.)
  • Dallas Morning NewsMark Edgar raved about the Franklin Barbecue downstairs: “It’s the best!” Then he rushed back to the office.
  • Roger Staubach was interviewed by The Ticket. Rog said this year we have two really great teams playing, and two great quarterbacks who don’t quit. He felt like this was going to be one of the best Super Bowls ever to watch, and “that’s what you want.”
  • FOX 4’s Ron Jackson was sucking a beer after a long day; “We had to do a lot of cut-ins today,” he said. Goes out on a limb and predicted upper 40s for Saturday and low to mid 50s for Sunday. Then another wave of cold weather Monday.
  • Dallas Mayor Tom Leppert welcomed the crowd with a spinning quip about the weather. Maybe it’s cold outside, he says, but no warmer hospitality exists than you’ll find in Dallas.

Then a video about Blackie’s nearly 60-year career was played. For oldtimers, it’s poignant. For youngsters, it’s hopefully inspiring. The video called him the best sports columnist in the history of Texas newspapers. That may well be true, but Blackie would have shuddered and headed to the parking lot.

Remember, Blackie, Dan Jenkins and other “oldtimers” were covering sports when a manual typewriter was considered state-of-the-art technology, the bottom drawer usually had a bottle of Jack Daniels and cigarette smoke filled newsrooms. They were the pioneers of Texas sports reporting and as tough as the players on the field.

Blackie’s wife, Joyce, said he couldn’t be part of the evening’s festivities because he’s in his 92nd year and he’s recovering from all those years of fun he had sportswriting. Blackie’s friends gave each other the eye. They know that Blackie was never a hoot and holler, hurray kind of guy.

Dan Jenkins

Next on the program was Dan Jenkins’ daughter Sally (a writer for Washington Post) to introduce her dad. She said her dad taught her to open a pack of Winstons, to drink three martinis and to “never let a thing go until it’s absolutely as good as you can make it.”

Dan came out and said he was happy “to be presented an award for living too long.” He also welcomed all the media to Texas. Later when he was asked about the cold weather affecting the Super Bowl, Dan chuckled, “I live in Fort Worth. This is fun! I also lived in New York for 30 years. This is nothing!”

Honoree Frank Luksa was introduced by Fort Worth-Star Telegram sports columnist Randy Galloway, who said Luksa was “a hero of mine” and a gentleman. Frank then said the award meant a great deal to him. He spoke about Blackie as a great writer who always found the perfect words.

Daryl Johnston and Michael Johnson

The final honoree was introduced by Roger Staubach, who in turn had to be introduced by Daryl “Moose” Johnston. Moose introduced Rog as “God Junior.” Before tacking his official duties, Staubach said that Bill Lively had been the “hero of the North Texas Super Bowl Committee.” Then he went on to claim that the wintry weather had been ordered by the host committee to make Pittsburgh and Green Bay teams feel at home. Getting downright religious, Roger claimed to have talked to Tom Landry and (Roger’s) mother in heaven to make it happen. But on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, he added, the committee will deliver the weather that the fans and the media would want. Then he introduced NFL vet Pat Summerall, whose six-decade career had included broadcasting 16 Super Bowls.

Pat recalled covering his first Super Bowl as a sideline reporter. When he was ordered to ask Green Bay Coach Vince Lombardi if he would mind kicking off–again–to start the second half, Summerall refused and feared that would be his last Super Bowl.

Jerry Jones and Stephen Jones

Then the hundreds of media settled back to music and “refreshments” on the ground floor, as Jerry Jones, Rich Dalrymple and Stephen Jones leaned over one rail against the wall, peering down at the action from the second level. Two Dallas cops and two women guarded the roped-off entrance to where they were. Occasionally Jerry would crook his finger to them, meaning to allow people–a middle-aged couple, two 20something girls–to enter the holy area and visit, or have their photo taken with Jerry.

Photos by Glenn Hunter

Tomorrow: Super Bowl XLV Wrap Up: Thursday including the Legends dinner and Audi Forum Part(y) I.

Coming Attractions: Super Bowl XLV Wrap Up

Like most of Dallas, MySweetCharity has been in the recovery stage of the Super Bowl Perfect Storm. As promised MSC will make an exception to its usual nonprofit coverage and provide you with a wrap up of the Super Duper Week.

Later today coverage of Tuesday’s Super Bowl media party will be posted. Don’t get your hopes up. You’ll find that the media is basically a ordinary group when they don’t have anything to cover.

Wednesday Weather Forecast: A Possible Return Of Wintry Woes

The elves from the MySweetCharity weather department just slipped a note to management that wintry weather might make a return Wednesday. Since there are two or three events (St. Valentine’s Day Luncheons, Turtle Creek Recovery reception, etc.) scheduled for Wednesday, please check with MSC about their status.

Let’s not forget what happened last week or last year.

LOOK at Mi Cocina With Richie Sambora, Nikki Lund Is A Go

Despite the snow, the Jones family is just like the postman. Nothing’s gonna stop them from their plan of action. So, LOOK at Mi Cocina in HP Village is still taking place this afternoon. It’s a private gathering to showcase the fashions of Bon Jovi guitarist Richie Sambora and White Trash Beautiful co-designer Nikki Lund.

Also on hand will be the Dallas Cowboys First Kids and spouses (Charlotte and Shy Anderson, Lori and Jerry Jone Jr. and Karen and Stephen Jones).

Starts at 2 p.m., so you have plenty of time to hitch up the huskies to your luxury sled.

If you didn’t get an invite, check back here. MySweetCharity just might get the poop for you.

Junior League Of Dallas Celebrated Sponsors Before Dallas Became Snowtown

Remember a time when Dallas was not Snowtown? Back in January? Let’s think pretty thoughts and remember when people weren’t freezing and comparing notes about traffic treachery. Say like the Junior League of Dallas Sponsor Cocktail Party at Bailey’s Prime Plus for its February 26th “Into Africa Ball” at the Hilton Anatole. It took place on Wednesday, January 26, and was sponsored by Inwood Bank.

JLD President Leigh Anne Haugh not only gave a great big shout out “Thank you!” to the sponsors, she also acknowledged the incredible efforts of Gala Chair D’Andra Simmons (pictured right with Leigh Anne Haugh) and her committee. You just know that with D’Andra at the helm, goals are gonna be surpassed.

BTW, some of those sponsors getting the shout out included: Keith Newman, Nancy Penson, Kim Quinn, Susan Schwartz, Brahmin, Tootsies, C.H. Moore, Sara Friedman, Galerie Zuger, Park Place Dealerships, KPMG LLP, The Agnes Cluthe Oliver Foundation, Bailey’s Prime Plus, Leigh Anne Haugh, Baylor Health Care System, Bank of Texas, PlainsCapital Bank, Methodist Health System, Just Brakes, Thompson & Knight Foundation, Capital One Bank, Ghassan Aboukhater, The Container Store and Sewell.

Photo by Dana Driensky

Off The Field Awards Banquet and Fashion Show Is Still On

Yup, you woke up, looked outside and saw more snow. But you’re also suffering a bit of cabin fever. If you have tickets to the Off The Field Banquet and Fashion Show with Abi Ferrin (pictured left with event co-chair Sherice Brown) at the Fairmont, you’re in luck. It’s still on!

Ballroom doors open and silent auction commences at 10:30 a.m.to benefit St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital.

So put on your warmest coat (you won’t need it once you’re inside) and head over to the Fairmont.

JUST IN: Friday’s Attitudes & Attire Luncheon Postpone Again

The Attitudes & Attire luncheon that was to take place Friday has been postponed again. No, don’t shake your head in frustration. It seems that the Dallas Trade Mart is closed due to broken pipe and flooding. Luncheon organizers realized that lunching ladies don’t do well in wading pools.

It’s just as well. There were a couple of Super Bowl, lady-type events that were already in place tomorrow.

The great news is that it’s been reschedule to Friday, February 25. Now mark that change on your calendar.

UPDATE: Just checked with MySweetCharity buddy/pr princess Meredith Hite at the Dallas Market Center. She’s checked around the building and says there are “no broken pipes or flooding. We’re open for business.”

She added that the decision was made based on the weather conditions.

Upshot — Attitudes & Attire Luncheon and Fashion Show is off for tomorrow and on for February 25.

MySweetCharity’s Timeout For Super Bowl XLV Namedropping

OK, MySweetCharity headquarters has been victimized by the rolling blackouts. The staff is wearing down jackets and clutching hand warmers in between posts. In keeping with our Super Bowl XLV Exception To The Rule, here is some name dropping:

  • Jerry Jones Jr. and a hearty party of friends (three fellows and five gals) were at Bob’s Steakhouse last night around 7-ish. (Guess he was getting a bite to eat before joining the rest of the Joneses at the Super Bowl media party at the House of Blues.) When patrons questioned the exuberant crowd’s exuberance, “Bob (Sambol) and staff explained it was ‘Jerry Jr.’ All (patrons) quit complaining and just watched.”
  • Also at Bob’s was Green Bay Packer Charles Woodson with friends, who were very nice and accommodating to all.
  • Understand a number of Steeler types was at Social Cedars last night, where chef John Tesar is in the kitchen.

Two Super Bowl XLV Tickets Being Auctioned Off Online for Turtle Creek Recovery Center

Just in from the folks who are raising money for the Turtle Creek Recovery Center. It’s an online auction which is very convenient if you’re home- or office-bound. According to organizers, here’s how it goes:

“Two tickets are being auctioned off to the highest bidder through noon on Friday, February 4. Proceeds go towards A Night at the Turtle Creek Karaoke Lounge benefiting Turtle Creek Recovery Center. This fabulous NFL Super Bowl XLV package includes:

  • 2 tickets in section 402 row 14 seats 13 & 14
  • 1 parking pass at the Ballpark in Arlington
  • Pregame hospitality at the Super Bowl Host Committee Touchdown Club at the Ballpark in Arlington from 1 p.m. – 4 p.m. (enjoy premium menu and open bar)
  • 2 Passes to the Game Day Fan Plaza 12:00 noon open

Process/Rules:

  • Minimum bid – starts at $500
  • Increments – $50
  • Submit your bid by emailing [email protected].  You’ll receive a reply with the latest bid amount.
  • Auction closes at 12 noon Friday, February 4th.
  • No refunds, sorry!

Super Bowl XLV Changes Of Plans For Tonight

We’re getting more info in about activities that are being influenced by the icy conditions tonight:

  • Gene Simmons Aces & Angels Salute to the Troops“Due to the weather situation in the DFW area, we are offering the first 1000 people who brave the weather and come support the troops a $475 all inclusive ticket for just $100 ticket to the biggest celebrity party in Dallas, the Gene Simmons Aces & Angels Salute to the Troops party tonight at Centennial Hall in Fair Park.  You must arrive between 6 and 7 and come help welcome Gene Simmons and the Troops.  You will have the opportunity to get on the Reality Show Gene Simmons Family Jewels and take part in this patriotic event.  Tickets include open bar, Taste of Texas buffet, Casino Games, Concerts by Five for Fighting & Little Texas, Celebrities, NFL Stars and more.  Come show your support for the troops. Close VIP Parking is still available online at Aces-Angels.org.  Additional information on the Aces & Angels Salute to the Troops event is available online at http://www.aces-angels.org.”
  • Leading Ladies – The dinner at Bailey’s Prime Plus has been postponed until the spring for the safety of guests.

A Perfect Sunday Afternoon At White Rock For Former First Second Bush Family

On any beautiful Sunday there is a traffic backup on Lawther Drive both ways. This past Sunday there was a particularly interesting log jam in front of the house known for decades as Mount Vernon. More current estate watchers know that it is the home of Teresa and John Amend (pictured right with Teresa Amend).

With police directing traffic and valets parking cars on an empty lot a an estate away, normal White Rock visitors were a little puzzled about all the hullabaloo. No one was getting past the front gate unless their name matched up on a list.  The great and the wish-we-were-great were humbled by the lineup. But this wasn’t the first such wait-your-turn for the afternoon.

The occasion was the 2nd Annual Super Bowl-A-Thon and Fundraiser for Global Health Corps hosted by former first daughters Barbara Bush and Jenna Hager. After Checkpoint Charlie at the entrance, VIP guests, who had been told to show up for a 2 to 3 meet-and-greet with the Former First, you turned your vehicle over to the valets (one was pleased to tell guests that he had just met President Bush) and headed to the next lineup at the check in. Then you thought (mistakenly) that you were headed to “the” room where you would chat with former First Couple Laura and George Bush. Nope. You just became part of a line that would put the Six Flags Over Texas cues to shame. First there was the kitchen (loved it), you met First Twins Jenna Hager and Barbara Bush (pictured right with Jenna Hager). They were the ideal prototypes for sorority rush. Every guest felt as if they were greeted with sincerity and interest. Knowing the Bush gals, it was just the case. Jenna told how she only wished she and hubby Henry could afford to buy a place in NYC as rumors said. Nope. After living in Baltimore, they were simply renting in the Big Apple, where Jenna is a correspondent for NBC.

Barbara was just back from Africa and beaming with the hope of what could be accomplished thanks to the funds raised at the event.

Then it was a U-turn and up the stairs (pictured) to a bedroom. But, alas, no Mama and Papa Bush. Just marvelous collectibles and memorabilia of past Amend days. You did know that the house was built in the 30’s and had gone through various “touch ups” by the H.L. Hunt family and the Amends, didn’t you?

Then you  snaked back through the hallway past the workout room into another couple of mini-hallways. But there were few complaints since it gave guests the opportunity to peak at the legendary mansion’s private quarters. At times the lineup took on a cocktail party atmosphere sans alcohol as people ran into neighbors, business associates and friends. Imagine an adult version of the lineup for the NorthPark Santa.

Then guests came upon an opening with a gaggle of beauties who took your purse, cellphone and paraphernalia to have your picture taken with the Former Firsts. You were then quickly shuttle into a small room where the briefest of “Howdys” were exchanged with Laura and George W. Bush. A quick snap by a photographer and you were done. Did we mention the hunky Secret Service folks who had cords hanging from their ears? They were with you every inch of the way. But, shoot, they’re all so cute, who could complain.

After the “quickie” with the Former Firsts, you then headed down the staircase and were thanked by extremely hospitable hosts Teresa and John, who had literally turned their house over to a mass of 500 strangers to raise funds for Barbara Bush’s cause.

Feeling a bit like a pinball machine ball, you bounced out to the back acreage with its tennis court, gloriously perfect swimming pool (pictured), game room, bowling complex and absolutely perfect view of White Rock with its sailing boats.

But who could complain? To add to the perfection was the scent of Goff hamburgers that were being served between the game room and bowling complex. When guests failed to realize that there was a second serving line, Goff’s owner mom Debbie Francis (pictured left with Lauren McElroy) stepped right up and advised folks to try the alternative.Joining Debbie and husband Jim was Debbie’s god daughter Katie Bivins.

But that was the only hitch to a perfect Sunday afternoon at White Rock Lake from the Amends estate.

Included in the crowd were former advisor Harriet Miers sipping a Coke, Alan Peppard and his gaggle of gals and the Bush twins’ former lifeguard Matt Vondeahe and wife Jennifer, who bumped into Container Store boss Kip Tindell and wife Sharon (pictured right with, from the left, Kip Tindell, Jennifer and Matt Vonderahe).

After the Former Firsts had posed for more photos than Santa at NorthPark, they joined the crowd that included your ROTC members from Marine Military Academy.

Little did the 500 guests know that their day in the sun would be short lived. The Amends must have connections, because Mother Nature really changed the landscape 36 hours later.

Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge Proves Dallas Is True Blue For The Super Bowl XLV

Driving through downtown Dallas Monday night (you know before the Super Bowl Freezer hit), it was pretty obvious that the tent business was thriving. Party tents were popping up all over — next to the Bud Light Hotel, across the way from the under-construction-Perot Museum, etc. However, the site of Friday’s former Prince concert (formerly known as Reunion Arena) was as bare as Eric Celeste‘s pate. FYI: Prince moved north to the InterContinental.

But over at the Hotel Belmont it was an entirely scene of activity and buzz. A stellar group had gathered including Mayor Tom Leppert, Trinity Trust Braintrust Dr. Gail Thomas, Trinity Trust Foundation Chair Mary McDermott Cook (she immediately left for the TACA grant distribution), Trinity Commons Foundation President David McAtee II, City Councilman Steve Salazar, Dallas Convention & Visitors Bureau President Phillip Jones, Dallas City Manager Mary Suhm and Trinity Commons Foundation Exec Director Craig Holcomb (pictured right with, from the left, David McAtee II, Dr. Gail Thomas, Phillip Jones, Steve Salazar, Mary Suhm and Tom Leppert) to flip the switch for the lighting of the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge in honor of the North Texas Super Bowl.

It was a marvelous introduction of Dallas’ next signature statement (pictured) to the world.

Just imagine what it will look like when the massive cables are attached!

Photos provided by the Trinity Trust.

Weather Cancellations . . .

So far, here are some cancellations that have landed in the MySweetCharity box:

This afternoon — This evening’s “Leading Ladies” progressive shop-a-thon at Highland Park Village is canceled due to the weather. Tomorrow night’s dinner at Bailey’s Prime Plus is still on.

Tomorrow — As noted in a previous post, Attitudes & Attire luncheon has been postponed to this Friday. . . same time of day, same place.

Thursday — XLV Concert at the Cotton Bowl featuring the Village People is canceled.

While these decisions have not come easily, organizers are basing their decisions on the safety and well being of their patrons.

If you know of any other cancellations, send them to us and we’ll help spread the word.

JUST IN: Tomorrow’s Attitudes & Attire Luncheon Has Been Postponed

Tomorrow’s annual Attitudes & Attire Luncheon at the Dallas Trade Mart has been postponed to Friday, February 4, and will start at 11:30 a.m.

If you wonder why, look outside.

TACA Distributes $1 Million To Art Groups . . . Again!

They did it again! Despite the frustration and challenges presented by the teeth-gnashing economy, the TACA team raised $1 million for area art groups this past year. To celebrate the feat, they played Santa Monday night at the Wyly handing out grants.

The recipients knew they were going to pick up a check, but they didn’t know the figure on it. The biggest one went to the Dallas Theater Center — $100,000. It was obvious from DTC’s Kevin Moriarty‘s (pictured) expression that he was pleased as punch! but then they all were pretty dog-gone thrilled with these late Christmas gifts.

“We are so pleased to have met our goal of distributing a million dollars for the fourth consecutive year,” said Lynn McBee (pictured), chairman of TACA’s 2009 and 2010 Board of Directors.  “This accomplishment is indicative of the extraordinary commitment the many individuals, companies and foundations have toward our performing arts community.”

It’s been under Lynn leadership that TACA has met its million-dollar goal for two very tough years.

Despite playing Mother Claus, Lynn had a little problem on her hands. While she was doling out money for TACA, her other pet project, The Trinity Trust, was lighting up the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge in blue and white as part of Super Bowl Week. For once, Lynn couldn’t be in two place at one time. So, husband Allan was recruited to help light the bridge.

In addition to doling out the dough, award-winning actor/playwright/educator Will Power (pictured) entertained the assembled group along with the Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts, Dallas Black Dane Theatre, Dallas Theater Center and Children’s Chorus of Greater Dallas.

(While MySweetCharity is not a critic, the opening performance by Dallas Black Dance Theatre’s Nycole Ray was amazing. The fragrance of baby powder was everywhere. If you don’t understand, ask someone who attended the presentation.)

According to organizers, “TACA’s grants will help support more than 4,648 performances that approximately 1.3 million people will attend.”

Grants were distributed to the following groups:

  • $5,000 —  Cara Mia Theatre Company, Contemporary Ballet Dallas, Irving Chorale, Lone Star Wind Orchestra, Meadows School of the Arts, SMU and Upstart Productions
  • $7,000 — Dallas Chamber Music and Voices of Change
  • $9,000 — Dallas Bach Society and Orchestra of New Spain
  • $10,000 — Echo Theatre, Second Thought Theatre, Teatro Dallas and Turtle Creek Chorale
  • $14,000 — Sammons Center for the Arts, Sammons Jazz
  • $15,000 — Chamber Music International, Dallas Museum of Art, TITAS, Undermain Theatre and Uptown Players
  • $18,000 — Orpheus Chamber Singers
  • $20,000 — Fine Arts Chamber Player and Kitchen Dog Theater
  • $30,000 — Children’s Chorus of Greater Dallas, Junior Players and Shakespeare Dallas
  • $34,000 — Dallas Wind Symphony and Lyric Stage
  • $38,000 — Greater Dallas Youth Orchestra
  • $40,000 — Theatre Three and WaterTower Theatre
  • $55,000 — Dallas Black Dance Theatre
  • $60,000 — Texas Ballet Theater
  • $70,000 — Dallas Children’s Theater
  • $95,000 — Dallas Opera and Dallas Symphony Orchestra
  • $100,000  — Dallas Theater Center

“Hitting the $1 million mark four years running is great incentive as we embark on a new fundraising year,” said Andrew Teller Jr. (pictured), chairman of TACA’s 2011 Board of Directors.  “TACA and its supporters remain steadfast to the mission of sustaining a vibrant performing arts community for North Texas.”

Andy also heads up RBC Wealth Management which has been a major supporter of TACA. According to New York-born Andy, that support will continue.

Before the audience was invited on stage to celebrate the evening’s distribution, the Children’s Chorus of Greater Dallas entered the Wyly and surrounded the crowd to perform The Lark. Seemed a little ironic that the closing act was a taste of the future talent (pictured) within the community that has thrived thanks to TACA.

Kids And Adults Make News at SLANT 45 Movie Premiere

The official debut of Mark Birnbaum‘s movie on SLANT 45 occurred  Friday at the Angelika in Plano. It was attended by lots of munchkin veterans of the SLANT 45 project for the North Texas Super Bowl Committee. From planting trees to art projects, 45,000 children took part in efforts to improve their communities.

Many hardcore reporters diss the red carpet opportunity to interview celebs. Evidently one enterprising reporter took advantage of the moment and chatted with ESPN broadcaster Craig James (pictured) and got a quote that has lit up the Internet.

Another VIP making the red carpet strut was the North Texas Super Bowl’s #1 man Bill Lively. When ask if the NFL was going to take the SLANT 45 concept to other cities, Bill said, “They’re talking about it very seriously  — whether to do this instead of something else. We’ll know very soon.”

Chef Kent Rathbun dropped in long enough to make sure that the catering was going smoothly. Duh! Yes, his team was handling the catering. Then Kent was off to see Cirque du Soleil: OVO at the Dr Pepper Arena in Frisco.

Just before the movie started SLANT 45 Chair Daryl “The Moose” Johnston (pictured) thank Shannon and Ted Skokos and Bank of America for helping to underwrite the program and media types like Clarice Tinsley, FOX 4 and the Dallas Morning News.

Then the lights dimmed and a year’s effort by the thousands of children and adult who came together for their communities was told thanks to Mark.

If you didn’t make Friday’s show, here are the scheduled dates and theaters.

Photos provided by Glenn Hunter

MySweetCharity News: Blog Sponsor For Dallas Film Society

With the promise that the MySweetCharity eats popcorn nonstop, was read Photoplay by her mother as a child and once advised Sophia Loren (pictured left with MySweetCharity’s chief scribe) on beauty tricks, MySweetCharity is very pleased to announce that MSC will be the blog sponsor for the Dallas Film Society.

Everyone at MSC including the elves in the MSC cubbyhole is high-fiving each other.

EDITOR’S NOTE: Regarding MySweetCharity blog sponsorships, each sponsored organization understands that coverage of their events and people will be reported according to the same standards that all groups receive.

We just wanted to make it clear to the MSC community that the sponsored groups receive no winks of the eye or convenient ignorance.

And, no, MySweetCharity receives no money for blog sponsorships just in case you’re wondering.

A Wilson McClure Home Was The Marvelous Scene Of The Moonlight Ball Patron Party

One of the pluses of sponsorship is the opportunity to see homes you’ve always admired from the curb. Such was Thursday night when Nancy (pictured) center with, from the left, Kerri Davis and Ronnie Sussman) and Mike Kerr opened their Wilson McClure home for the patrons of the Ronald McDonald House of Dallas‘s Moonlight Ball.

With “great bones” from the 50’s, the former home  of the late Betty and Ben Carpenter was the perfect blending of traditional structure, modern art and great taste. Nancy was quite upfront that they didn’t change much of the basic home because it was so wonderful. They just refreshed certain areas. Don’t you just love someone who doesn’t have a bulldozer up their sleeve?

Gala Co-chairs Natalie Dossett and Gigi Sussman (pictured right with Natalie Dossett) told guests that all arrangement for the Saturday, March 5th gala at Brook Hollow Golf Club were in place for the black tie evening of dining and dancing. Last year’s gala had 300 guests in attendance.

In the crowd were Honorary Chairs Bob (past chair of the RMHD Board) and Katherine Penn and Ronald McDonald House of Dallas Board of Directors Chairman Mike McWilliams (pictured right with, from the left Bob and Katherine Penn).

NFL Players Wives Make A Sneak Play With Abi Ferrin At The Shak

The Super Bowl Week activities really got started last Thursday unofficially at The Shak. Leave it to the NFL Players Wives to get a step ahead of everybody else. The gals and select pals got together for a super-duper preview of Abi Ferrin‘s fashions at The Shak Thursday night. With Abi looking on with total approval, football pro spouses Sherice Brown (pictured right with Abi Ferrin), Janet Dorsett, Romonda Jordan and Becky Nguyen modeled some of Abi’s outfits.

The full-blown collection will hit the runway at the 10th Annual Off-The-Field Player’s Wives Awards Banquet and Fashion Show benefiting St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital  at the Fairmont Friday.

Tried but couldn’t tell if fashion show Co-chair Sherice had her fingers crossed for husband Tim’s being up for the Hall of Fame. The vote takes place Saturday before the Super Bowl.

Despite the fact that players like Tony Dorsett, Randy Jordan and Dat Nguyen (pictured left with Becky Nguyen) were on hand to support the gals, the handful of smiling uniformed officers were evidently more impressed with the leggy ladies like Amy Hunniford and Chrissy Tebbe (pictured right with Amy Hunniford).

Ironically just across the aisle from The Shak, Wisby-Smith Fine Art Gallery opened at the Crescent this week with Peter Max-ified football helmets.

Before The Super Bowl, The Souper Bowl Was Definitely On For The Stewpot Alliance

Despite all the talk about the upcoming Super Bowl, Dallasites focused on the third annual Soup’s On!, the real souper bowl, Tuesday at Union Station. With nine generous chefs (pictured from the left, Keith Hanks, Abraham Salum, Joel Harloff, Bruno Davaillon, Keith Hanks, Kevin Garvin, Brian Luscher, Randall Copeland and Jim Severson) toiling in the kitchen to feed a sell-out crowd benefiting The Stewpot Alliance, guests sauntered around the silent auction of art and the goodies. Among them were Sam and Karen Blair, who were catching up with Ed “Mr. Levee Singer” Bernet (pictured right with, from the left, Sam and Karen Blair) about the musical group’s upcoming 50th anniversary.

Before anyone knew it, a call to lunch rang through the hall. No, they didn’t bong dinner chimes or whistle. Instead the strong, wonderful voices of the Hamilton Park Men’s Choir (pictured) belted out songs that could not be denied.

Among the crowd hearing the call were Laura and Mayor Tom Leppert, who ran into former Homeless Czar/presently Park Board President Mike Rawlings (pictured right with, from the left, Tom and Laura Leppert). Gee, everyone seemed to be button-holing Mike. You’d think he was running for mayor or something.

Robyn Conlon arrived with a great tan having just returned from Grand Caymen. She was thrilled about the video that was to be shown and with good reason. It was a tribute to her father, the late Gillis Thomas, who died last year and had been so instrumental at the Stewpot and helping the homeless.

Emcee Gary Cogill got things started with the help of the Rev. Dr. Joe Clifford, Luncheon Chair Lillie Young (pictured), Mayor Tom and Rev. Dr. Bruce Buchanan of The Stewpot. They couldn’t help but give keynote speaker Mort Meyerson a bit of a hard time claiming that Mort reported the sell-out was the result of “my mother has been on the phone again.” Enjoying the joke was mother Bernice (pictured) front and center at the #1 table.

The guests also learned that The Stewpot was celebrating its 35 anniversary and had served more than four million meals since its start back in 1975.

As the speakers took their turns, the servers presented the tables with bowls of soup. Each table had a soup created by one of the nine chefs.  BTW, insiders know that the take-home goodies from this lunch not only include a soup bowl designed by children in the Stewpot’s Saturday morning program but also a copy of the chefs’ soup recipes.

In addition to the soup, guests were served a nice chicken dish. As lunch was devoured, the chefs took a break (pictured) before being introduced. One of them told Abraham to sit and back and relax. They all knew that Abraham is with days of opening his new restaurant Komali, right next door to Salum. (Sneaked a peak of the Komali after Soup’s On! and, boy, has it been worth the wait.)

After the introduction of the chefs, the schedule started showing signs of running over its 1 p.m. conclusion resulting in Mort (pictured) not taking the podium until 12:59. Before starting his 11-minute talk, he turned the tables on the crowd by pulling out a camera and taking a photo of the audience so Bernice could show it to her bridge club.

MySweetCharity Succumbs To Super Bowl Madness

MySweetCharity has always played by the rules and adhered to our policy of covering only events and people in the Dallas nonprofit community.

Due to popular demand (the checkout lady at the grocery and a reclusive spinster), we’re going to make an exception this week. Because so many of the Super Bowl activities benefit nonprofits and we all love a good showing of names and events, MSC will be including Super Bowl coverage as well as the normal, amazing feats of greatness by Dallas charities.

Bill Cosby At Bishop’s Gala Proves It Takes A Lot To Be Funny

Saturday night’s “Reaching for the Stars” benefiting the Catholic Charities proved that the folks behind the scenes put up with all types of things to make an event a success. But more about that later.

It was a record-breaking guest count at the Hilton Anatole for the annual Bishop’s Gala. With a mix of black tie, suits and cleric collars, the common look was happy folks. During the pre-dinner reception, Marti and Jim Burke (pictured left with Marti Burke) were one of the happiest couples in the place. When asked if they were there for the evening’s entertainment, Bill Cosby, they said it was largely to support Catholic Charities. Besides being CEO for TXU Energy, Jim’s also a heavyweight at Christ the King and one of Fr. Don Zimmerman‘s chief cheerleaders.

Bishop Kevin Farrell (pictured) arrived and was greeted like a rock star. There’s just something about the twinkle in his eye and that touch of Irish accent that knocks you out. Just ask him to say, “charity.”

The Dallas Cowboys were well represented. Biddie and Lee Roy Jordan were talking with Marianne (pictured left with from the left Lee Roy  and Biddie Jordan) and Roger Staubach. The Staubachs will be wearing several hats in the Super Bowl days to come — hosting Jones Lang LaSalle corporate types, heading up Super Bowl committee obligations and being Dallas Cowboy alums. Why, next Friday alone they have three parties to juggle.

Across the way in front of the hallway leading to the Sapphire Room, two official types stood allowing only v-e-r-y special people in. But more about that later.

Just as the reception seemed to be over capacity, the doors to the Chantilly Ballroom opened and the crowd flowed in. After the guests took their places and dinner was a done deal, a game of “Heads and Tails” was played. Colleen Barrett and Herb Kelleher (pictured right with Colleen Barrett) stepped outside, so she could grab a quick smoke.

Lillian Taylor-Blackmon was thrilled about the evening of Cosby entertainment. It was an early birthday gift from her date/husband, Deloitte manager Matthew (pictured). Lillian laughed, “You gotta love the Catholics. There are 10 bars and four drink tickets for each guest.”

Then the live auction commenced at 8:10 p.m. with everything from elk hunts, Mavericks packages, a Notre Dame football weekend, and trips galore. Fr. Josef Vollmer-Konig‘s (pictured) bringing ingredients to the winner’s home and creating a custom gingerbread house was so popular, it sold twice to the John O’Dwyers and Thomas Valentas.

The auction ended with the selling of two red Catholic Charities’ sweatshirts signed by Cos for $7,000+.

Finally the show was going to start with a lone chair draped in one of the sweatshirts on stage. Cosby entered wearing the other sweatshirt and helped Catholic Charities’ Sr. Mary Anne Owens (pictured right with Bill Cosby) announce the endowment campaign of $5 million had been reached thanks to an anonymous person’s $2.5 million challenge. Cos asked the question on everyone’s mind, “Who gave $2.5 million?” Answer: “It was anonymous.” Without missing a beat, Cos said: “What’s his last name, then?”

After the check and Sr. Mary Ann left the stage, Cos settle back to provide more than an hour of non-stop humor. The only time he hesitated was when he took a swig from his water bottle.

One of the auction items was a call from Cos on stage to the winner’s person of choice. That one went for a nifty $5,000 to Cathy and Dan Basso. A perfect match. Cosby invited Cathy (pictured center with, from the left, Bill Cosby and Dan Basso) to the stage to help with the call. A spunky Cathy appeared without hesitation and notified Cos that he would be calling her son, Franklin, who was at his 40th birthday party at a bar across from Baylor Hospital. The exchange was priceless including Cosby telling Franklin, “Your dad spent $5,000 to call you. There goes your trip to France. . . Somebody’s trying to get in heaven.”

If the show had stopped there, many would have gone home happy. But, no. They were in for an evening of laughter sans profanity or suggestive stories. For instance,

  • In Philadelphia, Cosby said he went to public schools, where their teams played Catholic schools and the Catholic schools always won. So he had a dislike for the Catholic people. “They even beat Wilt Chamberlain!”
  • He pointed out the difference in the ways that Protestants and Catholics worship. “Our pastors talk to God and Jesus, Catholics have signals. Protestants have no signals. That’s why they yell: ‘Jesus!’ I was in boot camp with an Italian fellow and we got to be friends. He was from Pittsburgh and said Catholics go to church for 48 minutes on Sunday. ‘You’re lying,’ I said. In the Corinthian Baptist Church, at 48 minutes the choir’s just coming down the aisle!”
  • “My waistline is dyslexic. Used to be 24; now it’s 42.”
  • At their wedding, “Camille (Cosby’s wife) started crying when the priest said, ‘Do you promise to obey?’ She cried because she knew she was lying when she said, ‘Yes.'”
  • Talking about marriage in general, Cosby told the men, “It was right there in front of your eyes all along, but you didn’t see it: your mother manipulating your old man.”
  • Camille to their kids: “Don’t worry about him (Cosby). I’ll take care of him.”
  • “Regardless of what women do to us, we still have instinct that helps us survive. I had a horrible thought at the dinner table one night: ‘If I wasn’t working, these people would have me killed.'”
  • “Behavior of the male is very important. If you think you’re the boss, my advice is to ‘Forget about it,’ because eventually she’s going to own you. Your wife is not your ‘friend.’ A diamond is a girl’s best friend; you gave her that ring and in return she gave you … nothing. She’s gonna be your wife, not your friend. I can get a friend with a beer. She’s a wife, way above a friend.”
  • “The (bride)groom has no power. He does only one thing at the wedding: picks out the groomsmen. Because it’s the last time he’ll ever see them. Except maybe as a pallbearer.”
  • At the wedding the groom’s father should be replaced with the groom’s mother, because then he (the groom) can see his whole life in front of him — “The woman who brought him into the world, and the woman who’s going to take him out.”
  • He told the story of his friend named “Ed,” who volunteered to pick him up in middle of night after Cosby’s car broke down. Whereas Camille gave Cos static for not listening to her about fixing the car, and told him to call AAA.

Then it was over and Cosby exited the stage quickly. Just as quickly City Council members Pauline Medrano and Dwaine Caraway arrived on the stage to present Fat Albert’s friend with the key to the city for all he has done for humanity. But it seemed that Cos had headed straight to his car. Somehow, they managed to get him back. Looking at the key securely suspended in a clear paperweight case (pictured), Cos said, “I can’t get it out and open anything!”

Pauline asked where he was going to put it. Cosby responded: “On my desk, where my wife will touch it.” He then thanked all the volunteers, saying, “You don’t need money; you just need intelligence, good instincts and yourself to make a difference.”

With that he was gone.

Ah, but you want to know about those “More about that later’s.” Follow the jump. [Read more…]

Share-The-Date: TACA Silver Cup Award Luncheon

Friday, March 4, 2011: Yes, it’s between Texas Independence Day (March 2) and Ebby’s birthday (March 9), but TACA Silver Cup Luncheon at the Hilton Anatole is one of the best lunches around. This year’s honorees are Sarah Perot and John Eagle (pictured left with Sarah Perot). If you have been to one, you’ve probably already gotten your reservation in. If you haven’t been, get your reservo now!

Following in the tradition, last year’s winners will introduce this year’s recipients. Can’t wait  to hear what Cindy Rachofsky has to say about John and what John Cody sings about Sarah.