Carson Kressley To Speak And Be Auctioned Off At Voice For Children

The traffic jam Wednesday night on Beverly was due to the gathering at Kelly and Mark Bunting‘s home. But it was for a very good cause — the kick-off party for the Voices for Children Luncheon with Carson Kressley.

With a crowd of 200 including Luncheon Chair Robert Weatherly, (pictured), organizers were thrilled about the upcoming Thursday, November 11th event at Union Station benefiting the Child Abuse Prevention Center. Invitations were just going out and they were already almost halfway to their goal attendance of 600. No surprise. With Carson as the main course of the event, it should be fascinating with his background as a stylist, televisions star, equestrian, best-selling author and fashion designer.

Photo provided by Child Abuse Prevention Center

And he contributing far more than just speaking to the group. It was announced that Carson (pictured) is part of a luxury auction package and what a package it is!

  1. Carson will visit the winner’s home for a private closet consultation. While sipping mimosas and chatting, the winner will receive Carson’s advice on his/her current wardrobe.  He will advise on  items he/she might purchase for the upcoming season, discuss wardrobe essentials, etc.
  2. Once the consultation has concluded the winner and Carson will be whisked away in their chauffeured Rolls Royce Phantom to Barneys New York for a shopping excursion where they will walk through the luxury department store to shop and Carson will point out wardrobe and beauty essentials – the “must haves” of every wardrobe.  To make the shopping experience even more exciting, Barneys New York will present the winner with a $2000.00 gift card.  The shopping experience will be luxurious and the winner will be treated like a celebrity – strictly first class.
  3. After shopping at Barneys New York, the winner and Carson will head to the Rosewood Mansion on Turtle Creek , Dallas’ only five star hotel, to have a leisurely and delicious lunch with 3 of the winner’s closest friends.
  4. Following lunch, Carson and winner will head to the relaxing Spa at The Stoneleigh for spa treatments – massage, facial, mani and pedi.  The day will end with afternoon tea or cocktail.

Why that’s enough to have a brand new chandelier installed in your closet. Your biggest problem is going to be which three friends will lunch with you and your new BFF Carson.

Montblanc Opening At NorthPark Makes Beautiful Music For The Dallas Symphony

(During these back-to-back-event days and nights, we occasionally have stringers provide coverage for MySweetCharity. No, we’re not having the pr person for the event do the write up. That would be a potential conflict of interest, don’t you know. If you suspect any missed coverage in any MSC posts, PLEASE let us know. While we like to be timely, credibility and accuracy are the priorities at MSC.)

Talk about synchronicity among charitable partners!

Nancy Nasher Haemisegger, co-owner of Dallas shopping mecca NorthPark Center, helped demonstrate that concept in spades Wednesday night, when the new Montblanc Boutique there hosted a private opening event benefiting The Dallas Symphony Orchestra.

The festive party for an estimated 130 guests featured a special performance by Dallas symphony musicians, and 10 percent of the evening’s sales proceeds were donated directly to the DSO.

But, the cooperation didn’t end there.

Nasher Haemisegger, who’s a member of the DSO board, helped persuade the board to hold its quarterly meeting at Maggiano’s Little Italy restaurant, also located at NorthPark, just before the Montblanc fete. As a result it was easy for many of the directors–including Nancy, Ron Gafford (pictured center with Nancy Nasher Haemisegger and DSO CEO Paul Stewart) and Joe Hubach–to walk the short distance once the meeting was over to the new Montblanc store.

There, they got a peek at the luxury brand’s brightly lit, 1,800-square-foot digs (about two-thirds as large as the brand’s former NorthPark location, just across the way), and a chance to chat it up with Montblanc’s affable North America president and CEO, Jan-Patrick Schmitz (pictured). The German-born Schmitz, who called Texas one of the iconic pen, watch and jewelry purveyor’s top four U.S. markets, said partnering with organizations like the DSO is “really close to my heart.”

Such arts partnerships “are not what we do,” he added. “It’s what we are.”

Indeed, the company had donated about $45,000 worth of gift items to be raffled off at the DSO’s recent AT&T Gala fundraiser at the Meyerson Symphony Center. Wednesday night, many who’d won those items at the gala showed up at the Montblanc boutique to collect their booty.

Among them were Hubach, a Texas Instruments exec who’d won a watch and a pen, and DSO vice president Rosemary Wilkie (pictured). Wilkie said she bought $2,000 worth of raffle tickets at the gala and won $3,500 worth of prizes, including a pen embellished with an emerald. “This is unbelievable,” she gasped, excitedly unwrapping the box containing the bejeweled pen.

Others enjoying the evening’s festivities were Dallas businessman Ed Okpa, who was talking up a new natural-gas venture he’s involved with in Nigeria; and Oak Cliff-native playwright Regina Taylor (pictured), author of the Dallas Theater Center’s upcoming “The Trinity River Plays,” a co-production with The Goodman Theatre of Chicago. Taylor said her three-part work is scheduled to have its world premiere at the AT&T Performing Arts Center’s Dee and Charles Wyly Theatre on Nov. 12.

-Photos and post by Glenn Hunter


Ritz Staff Maintains Decorum While Celebrity Waiters Create Mayhem For Family Gateway Fundraiser

There are members of the Ritz Carlton serving staff who are surely in rehab this week after working the “Dining with the Stars” lunch last Friday.  Imagine the Blues Brothers and Laverne & Shirley joining James Stevens‘ staff to serve a meal.

It all started out so properly for the Family Gateway benefit at the Carlton. About 150 guests arrived and Ritz staff lined the entry with trays of wine, champagne and tea. With perfect posture in navy suits with white shirts and ties, the Ritz offered but never pushed. Not one hair was out of place. Heavens, no. Little did they know that soon their surroundings of finery would resemble a raucous Texas-OU bash.

In the meantime, the celebrity waiters  were in a warm-up room comparing notes. They looked pretty calm and sedate.

Then Scott Murray took the podium and introduced the day’s lineup of celebrities (pictured front row from the left, Amy Vanderoef, Shaugh Niland, Amanda Mazey, Peyton Wright, Laurie Phillips, Kim Fischer, Shay Geyer and Vaughn Miller; back row from the left, John Niland, Marco Rivera, Russell Maryland and Brendan Higgins) — dazzling blondes, former and present jocks, television personalities and Laurie Phillips (Wade’s wife), who was all dressed up in diner waitress uniform. Why John Niland’s wife Shaughn even joined the group, just for the heck of it. The 150 guests gave a healthy cheer for each. So far it was following the norm for celebrity waiter events.

Then the waters parted and the stiff, upper lip Ritz staff carried on (pictured) despite the class clown  celebrity recruits. Without a moment of shock or a hair out of place, the Ritz staff carried on as if Alec Guinness were watching.

But how crazy did it get? Words cannot adequately describe the mayhem that took place. Here’s just one photo of the escapades (pictured Scott Murray and Laurie Philips).

You’ll have to check the rest of the photos on MySweetCharity’s Photo Gallery.

But despite it all the Ritz staff kept a stiff upper lip for the lunch and probably hit the Rattlesnake Bar afterwards talking about

  • Polo playing Vaughn riding Brendan on all fours around the dining room
  • Marco dipping a lady into a deep kiss on stage (Okay, so it was his wife, but still. . .)
  • John and Russell singing Islands in the Stream to each other? Yes, someone did offer to pay them more to stop singing.
  • Kim Fischer rapping to Baby Bump with the rest of the gals dancing behind her. Definitely not something that Debbie Reynolds would be doing.

If you want to blame somebody for creating this mega-fun lunch and raising $55,000 for Family Gateway, you need to hunt down Luncheon Chair Kristi Bare last seen laughing herself silly.

“Hold ’em for Heroes” Shuffles Over To Lakewood Country Club Tonight

In just a couple of hours, the poker players of Dallas will head to the Lakewood Country Club for Heroes for Children‘s “Hold ‘Em for Heroes.” The annual card game raises funds to “help support families with children battling cancer by reducing the financial burden that often co-exists with cancer treatment.”

If you haven’t registered already, the online is closed, but they’ll allow “walk ups.”

When you think of it, the date for the game was just perfect! The Rangers have the day off.

Share-A-Date: 2010 Dallas Jingle Bell Run

Wednesday, December 22 @ 6:30 p.m.: Benefiting the Trinity Strand Trail and the Mavericks Foundation, the 2010 Dallas Jingle Bell Run will start at the Anatole. This very family- and dog-friendly event will offer a 1-mile fun run/walk starting at 6:30 p.m. and a 5K race beginning at 7 p.m.

This run is always more fun than shopping. Folks walk, run and stand around in Santa outfits, antlers, bells and whatever suits the season.

BTW, registration is available now.

Word In About Today’s 11th Annual Celebrating Women Luncheon

If you’re one of the 1,300 attending the 11th Annual Celebrating Women Luncheon at the Anatole today, be forewarned. Insiders say that in addition to featuring actress/breast cancer survivor Jill Eikenberry and her husband Michael Tucker, the video that will be shown is simply remarkable.

Deja Vu Evening At The Real Estate Council’s “Giving Gala”

Déjà vu moments happen. But when it’s an entire evening, then you know you’ve entered a Groundhog Day situation. That’s what happened last Thursday for The Real Estate Council‘s “Giving Gala” at the Anatole. The theme was western much to the liking of cowboys like Carl Ewert (pictured) , the sky was clear and the adorable Pint-Size Playhouses looked outstanding in the Anatole Sculpture Park amid all the rows of tables and festive decor. Why as you entered the park the first thing that caught your eye was a ferris wheel. Hmm, that must be the hot item of event planners this season. Wasn’t there a ferris wheel at Cattle Baron’s the week before? It even had that star design on it like this one. What a coincidence!

Then over there was . . . no, it couldn’t be . . . but, yup, it was a huge popcorn box with four mega-cotton candy cones just like the one at Cattle Baron’s.

Ring! There was a familiar sound. Over to the side was the ring-the-bell, just like. . . well, you know.

Strolled over to the ferris wheel (pictured) that had been so popular at Cattle Baron’s and only one couple was riding it. Asked the operator if he and his ferris wheel had been at Cattle Baron’s. His affirmative answer confirmed suspicions and reported that he had transported the big wheel down from Chicago for the Dallas events.

After a little investigation, it was learned that CBB Chair Kristi Sherrill Hoyl and TREC Gala Chair Debby Hansen are good friends and compared notes and smartly shared some of the decor. In these days when fundraising is really being challenged, creative relationships pay off.

Ah, but don’t think this cozy relationship is new to the two groups. It seems that last year a similar POA was in place until the poor Cattle Baron’s Ball was a “wash out.”

For the 900 at the TREC event, it couldn’t have been better. Well, perhaps it could have used a little lighting along the buffets. One gent in line picked up a description card beneath a steam pan to see what it contained. Alas, he couldn’t read it and chuckled that next time he was going to bring along a flashlight.

The good news was regardless of what you put on your plate, it was mighty tasty. Many guests were seen going back for seconds of the unknown dishes.

Just as folks were returning to their tables with dessert, it was time to auction off the playhouses that sold for more than the original asking price but less than Champ d’Or. Thanks to the playhouse auction and the efforts of TREC, a half million dollars was raised for its various projects.

To close down the perfect evening for the real estate professionals who have really taken a beating of late, they had Robert Earl Keen perform “under the Texas stars.”

Volunteers Needed To Get Rid Of Dogs

All right. Settle down. You know MySweetCharity would not mean “get rid” the same way others might. Here’s the situation. Perhaps you’ve hear about Tawana Couch and the Society for Companion Animals. They arrange to save “a lot of death-row dogs by flying them to a shelter in Spokane, Washington,” where (believe it or not) adoptions are through the roof.

But Tawana needs help starting this weekend. According to Jonnie England:

“Now that the weather is good, volunteers are needed each week to help set up crates, foster dogs overnight and/or transport them to DFW Airport the next day for an early-morning flight.

  • Volunteers are needed this coming Sunday afternoon, Oct. 24, or Monday, Oct. 25, during the day to help Tawana clean, set up and label crates for shipping the dogs.
  • Volunteers are also needed on Monday afternoon, Oct. 25, to pick up dogs at Dallas Animal Services and either transport them to their overnight foster homes or—better yet—take them home to foster for the night. Fostering for one night is easy, but that also means you’ll need to get up really early to be at DFW Airport at 4 a.m. Tuesday, Oct. 26!  But the good thing is you can still get to work on time.  And the even better thing is that YOU WILL HAVE SAVED A LIFE!

“This week’s VSP/Urgent list at Dallas Animal Services includes 24 dogs. Tawana hopes to have enough volunteer help to save 10 of them—or more, if enough people volunteer and foster.

“Just think:  By giving a few hours of your time and giving up a couple hours of sleep, you can literally mean the difference in life and death for a happy, healthy dog!

“If you can help, contact Tawana: [email protected]

Who Is Responsible For Tuesday’s Lunch With T. Boone, Emmitt and Roger?

Last year’s LaunchAbility‘s* “Expanding Worlds 2010 Luncheon” featured a conversation with an all-star cast of gals (Elaine Agather, Linda Custard and Tincy Miller) with the late Paul Bass serving as interrogator. . . or, rather moderator. It was one of Paul’s last on-stage appearance and quite memorable as he combined humor with typical Paul Bass witticisms in chatting with the ladies.

Before the organizers had even had time to clear the tables, Ebby Halliday (pictured) asked LaunchAbility CEO Cathy Packard, “That was great. Who are you going to get for next year?” Cathy admitted that she hadn’t started that thinking process yet and asked Ebby who she would recommend. Without hesitation, the ageless Ebby with that well-known twinkle in her eye said, “T. Boone Pickens, Emmitt Smith and Roger Staubach.”

After Cathy got up off the floor from the suggestion of the stellar trio, she realized that Ebby was dead serious and told Ebby that it would be a killer group, but how do you get on the schedule of these three never-stop, national headline makers.

“I’ll get T. Boone and Roger,” Ebby smiled. “You get Emmitt.”

While Cathy didn’t know Emmitt, she did know former sports anchor Scott Murray, who was an old friend and had helped produce the past lunch. And Scott came through with Emmitt.

So, when you see the three chaps on stage at the Fairmont next Tuesday, just remember that it all started with the twinkle in Ebby’s eye.

* formerly known as Special Care & Career Services

Vince Goes To The Dogs For “2011 Paws Cause” Preview Of Celebrity Photographer Holt Haynsworth’s Artistry

Last Thursday a different type of art show took place in a different type of gallery. Known for cool clothes, Vince in HP Village was the location for the showing of Holt Haynsworth‘s (pictured right with Gregory Dunbar) fabulous handiwork for the 2011 Paws Cause Calendar. Instead of plastering photos on walls or balancing them on easels, Holt, who a very high tech kind of guy, had the photos of critters and their companion showing digitally on a flatscreen. Needless to say, it was the gathering place as subjects and friends ooh-ed and awed over the wonderful black-and-white shots.

Vince manager Stacy Gibbons felt it was the perfect location for the showing. After all, Vince is very pooch-phriendly. Not only does it provide cookies for doggie patrons, but it also has a “mascot” — a French bulldog named Oscar, who stops in with his mistress just about every morning.

Set up in the front of the store, Hal Brierley was displaying last year’s calendars to folks who were still thinking about ordering up a photo for the SPCA fundraising project. Hal might want to consider giving up his day job and work as a carnival barker. With that smile and twinkle in his eye, he’s pretty darn good at pitching to the crowd.

The big talk of the night was the Rangers game on Friday at the Ballpark. Cassie Evans was proud as punch about her husband Jake Decker (pictured right with Cassie Evans) closing a big deal and being rewarded with tickets to the game.  If the Rangers make it to the World Series, Jake is going to have to pull off a really humongous deal to make his wife happy.

If you have a pet or a friend with a pet, you just might still time to get a place in the calendar. Having checked the rates, it’s a bargain. Plus it would make a great holiday gift to surprise someone with a picture of their pet in the calendar. Only problem is the deadline was last Friday, but if you beg you probably can convince the top dogs to get you in.