Share-A-Date: The Salvation Army’s “Doing The Most Good”

Scott O'Grady

November, 11, 2011 (aka “11-11-11”): The Salvation Army is known for doing not just good things but great things. Still the organization is too humble to call its “Doing the Most Good” luncheon at the Hilton Anatole “Doing the Most Great.”

Regardless, the luncheon presented by AT&T is going to have Scott O’Grady as the keynote speaker. You recall he was the Air Force fighter pilot who was shot down over Bosnia and scrambled through the countryside for six days in 1995.

Betcha luncheon chairman Mark Schortman will make sure the meal at the Anatole will be a heck of a lot better than Scott’s fare in Bosnia, when he lived on leaves, grass and ants.

BTW, did you know that Scott has written a children’s book? Or, since his Air Force gig, he’s settled in Dallas? Well, now you do!

Photo credit: The Dallas-Fort Worth Salvation Army


Allie-Coosh Kicks Off Two-Week Sale Benefiting The Bridge Breast Network

Karen Luter, Paulette Martsolf, Terry Wilson-Gray

The very best four-letter word is “Sale!” Allie-Coosh‘s Paulette Martsolf is an old hand when it comes to a sale and knowing how to kick it off. Last Thursday she held a “Summer Reception” benefiting The Breast Bridge Network complete with fashion showing, refreshments and new handcrafted jewelry.

As if that wasn’t enough, she also let guests have a sneak peak at what’s on the horizon of fall fashions.

If you’ve ever attended the Attitudes & Attire fashion show, you know Paulette’s taste in clothes has its own fan club.

Better hustle on over to Allie-Coosh. You’ve only got a week left to enjoy that four-letter word.

Photo provided by Allie-Coosh

Shh, Can You Keep A Secret? Kevin Bacon?

Kevin Bacon

Monday, August 1, tickets officially go on sale for the public to attend actor/musician Kevin Bacon‘s evening talk at the September 8th Nasher Salon Series. In addition to appearing in 71 films (“Animal House,” “Diner,” “Footloose,” “Tremors,” “A Few Good Men,” “Murder in the First,” “Frost/Nixon,” etc.) and playing with his brother Michael in The Bacon Brothers, Kevin and his wife Kyra “The Closer” Sedgwick were some of the folks who were victimized by Bernard Madoff‘s Ponzi scheme.

Did you know that in 2007 Kevin, who had gained fame for being the subject of the board game “Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon Game,” started the nonprofit According to Kevin,

“you can support your favorite charities by donating or creating fundraising badges — as well as check out the favorite causes of other people, including celebrities.  You can also pay it forward with Good Cards® – gift cards for charity that can be redeemed as a donation to more than 1 million charities.”

BTW, it’s times like this when being a Nasher patron member really pays off. Not only do you get a discount, you get a head start on picking up one of the 200 tickets. Patrons can purchase their tickets starting Friday.

P.S. — If you want to start the day off on a high note, hit the link for “Footloose” and turn up the sound. Even in this heat, you’ll feel cool. Betcha you can’t help but want to dance.

Photo provided by the Nasher Sculpture Center.

4th Annual Blondes vs. Brunettes Changes Venues But The Sizzling Competition Remains Heated

The infamous Blondes vs. Brunettes powderpuff football game on Saturday, August 6, has been moved from SMU’s Ford Stadium. No, not way over to Arlington’s Cowboys Stadium. It’s just been moved a few yards north to Westcott Field. BvB den mother Erin Finegold said she’s not certain why the change of location had to take place, but she absolutely has no problem with it. Westcott was where the BvB used to be played and it’s like returning home.

Jenn Thompson

BTW, the competition between the two groups is really heating up. Blondes quarterback Jenn Thompson has thrown three winning games for her natural and unnatural blonde teammates.

On the other hand, the Brunettes are hungry for victory this year and have supposedly brought on board a new quarterback and a professional trainer to really get them into shape.

The showdown benefits the Greater Dallas Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association.

It’s Cool To Celebrate “Christmas In July” At Texas Scottish Rite Hospital For Children

Let’s hope that when Santa and Mrs. Claus pull up at Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children tomorrow morning they bring some cooler weather with them.

The reason for the stopover is the 12th “Christmas in July” for the patients and their families. There will be garland making, reindeer decorating and photo sessions with Santa. Since the reindeer are snowboarding in South America, the Clauses will arrive in a silver Dodge Viper.

Share-A-Date: The Real Estate Council’s Giving Gala

Thursday, October 6: In October Clint Black is going to be a very familiar face around town. Yup, he’ll be performing at the ultra-exclusive VIP Barons party at Cattle Baron’s Ball on Saturday, October 15. But just 9 days before on Thursday, October 6, he’ll be the main attraction in the Hilton Anatole’s Sculpture Garden for The Real Estate Council‘s Giving Gala presented by Deloitte.

Needless to say, it’s a western theme with plenty of food, fun and refreshments. After all, it’s real estate people. They know how to party even during the worst of economic times.The folks responsible for this one are chair Willie Hornberger (Jackson Walker LLP), vice chair Mitch Paradise (Corgan), underwriting chair Tanya Little (Hart Advisors Group), table sales chair Ryan Thornton (Thackeray Partners), logistics chair James Adams (Corgan), playhouse chair Nick Jarke (Beck) and publicity chair Kim Hogan (HOK).

In addition to enjoying cute Clint, guests will be able to bid on wonderful playhouses that are showstoppers themselves.

Tickets start at $360.50 to raise funds for The Real Estate Council Foundation’s good works in four key grant areas–housing, education, job creation and the environment.

Share-A-Date: Caron Cares Conference’s “A Day Of Discovery And Recovery”

Friday, September 9, 2011: Caron Treatment Centers is holding “A Day of Discovery and Recovery,” its first health conference and luncheon for parents, professionals and those concerned about addiction and recovery. To start the event off at the Fairmont, Constance Curry and Kristina Wandzilak will be the keynote speakers for the breakfast. This mother/daughter team wrote “The Lost Years,” a true story about an all-American girl and her family as they take the journey through addiction and recovery.

At  the luncheon co-chairs Robin Bagwell and Jan Osborn have arranged to have author/speaker Brad Lamm give the keynote talk. Brad, who is founder and president of Intervention Specialists, is a contributing member of “The Dr. Oz Show.” He is also the creator and producer of “Addicted to Food” on the Oprah Winfrey Network.

In addition to the breakfast and luncheon topics, participants will be able to attend two other talks from the following topics during the 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. conference:

  • The Warning Signs of Alcoholism and Addiction: What caring adults need to know about the new frontier of genetic research and substance abuse
  • Insatiable Hunger: Eating disorders and substance abuse
  • Pain Medications: The next epidemic
  • The Modern Family: Focusing on love in a stressful world
  • Subtle Abuse: Reclaiming your values and worth
  • The Laws and Addiction: What you need to know about liability and ordinances in your own backyard

Perhaps you don’t have such circumstances in your life, but it’s always wise to be safe and prepared just in case your life changes.

The Dallas Opera Cancels Katya Kabanová

Sometimes you have to make cuts in your current plans for longterm successes. While it’s painful. . . make that extremely painful, it’s still the wise thing to do in the long run. This situation arose today with the announcement by The Dallas Opera that Katya Kabanová had been cut from the upcoming season.

The full release on the cancellation follows the jump. [Read more…]

Chef Gorji’s Monday Class Will Impress Your Grill And Help “Save Lives One Bite At A Time”

That tried and true grill of yours is probably entering the ho-hum stage of the summer. You’ve perfected the traditional hamburger and hot dogs. You’ve even mastered the more upper-end items like salmon and steaks. But summer is only half over and it’s time to branch out. Has Dr. Alison Laidley got a deal for you!

Through her Laidley’s Ladies & Gentlemen and “Saving Lives One Bite at A Time,” she’s arranged for Chef Gorji to hold “Summer Grilling Secrets with Surprising, Sizzling Sides,” a cooking class Monday starting at 7 p.m. at Canary by Gorji with a portion of the proceeds benefiting the Susan G. Komen Foundation and the Komen Race for the Cure.

The award-winning chef will teach “the secrets of summer grilling and put a sizzling twist on traditional favorites. He’ll prepare seasonal produce in surprising new ways, including a grilled, chilled avocado.”

For $110 you’ll enjoy a three-course dinner paired with three wines (Grilled chilled avocado with shrimp cocktail, barbecue veal ribs with pomegranate reduction and saffron and pistachio ice cream). In  addition, you’ll receive a $50 gourmet gift package of Chef Gorji’s product line of pomodoro and puttanesca pizza and pasta sauces, dipping oil, marinade primer, pomegranate champagne vinaigrette and spicy remoulade.

After this class, your grill and friends will be very impressed with your newly acquired talents.

Share-A-Date: Dallas Area Habitat For Humanity

Thursday, November 3: For 25 years, the Dallas Area Habitat for Humanity has been building homes for better neighborhoods. Through partnerships with skilled professionals and volunteers, low-income families are able to afford high quality, energy efficient homes.

No, we’re not talking 25 houses over the years. Think along the lines of more than 850 homes.

To celebrate their efforts, they’re putting their tools down for an evening at the Fairmont to celebrate their 25th anniversary. Event chairs Gina and Ken Betts and Paula and Bay Miltenberger are joined by honorary chairs Suzanne and David Holl to “to celebrate 25 years of transforming neighborhoods and serving families.”

Shhh! Don’t Tell — Chase Is Donating $1.4 Million To Perot Museum Of Nature & Science And Big Thought This A.M.

This morning Chase will cheerfully donate $1 million to the “under-construction” Perot Museum of Nature & Science and $400,000 to fund Big Thought’s Thriving Minds.

It’s a secret until the press conference at 10 a.m., but since our buddy Bob Miller broke the news this morning (Paywall) , we figured why not share.

The press conference is taking place at the Museum of Nature & Science in the Science Building at Fair Park, so act surprised when the announcement is made.

Share-A-Date: Partners Card 2011

Paige Flink

Friday, October 28 – Sunday, November 6: The very idea of shopping in cooler times is riveting. Add Partners Card to it and it’s enough to make you want to buy your Partners Card now.

But you can’t. At least you can’t for now. The $60-cards that provide 20% discounts at hundreds of stores don’t go on sale until mid-September. Yes, you just know MySweetCharity will alert you to the exact date as soon as it’s official.

Did you know that last year the Partners Card program sold 15,000 cards raising a record-breaking $1 million for Paige Flink‘s Family Place? And, remember, 100% of the proceeds go directly to The Family Place.

Dawn Rizos Has Lots Of Newest “Best Friends” Including Mel

It’s always refreshing to see groups working together, helping each other and showing appreciation. More about that later.

Saturday’s heat and sunshine were brutal. Almost as brutal as the horror stories that resulted from the infamous Michael Vick fighting dog compound.  The summer’s microwave conditions were searing and no sign of rain anywhere. It was even too hot to think of having a car wash. That is, unless you were an old pro at summer outdoor activities like this, you needed to raise some $$ for a good cause and you’re Dawn Rizos.

Richard Hunter, Mel and Sunny Hunter

The animal-loving Dawn, who has raised more than $200,000 for local animal causes, wasn’t going to let a little thing like blinding heat stop her from fundraising for Best Friends Animal Society, the group that took possession the Vick-tory dogs in 2007 and rehabbed many of them. A driving force was Sunny Hunter, who works for Dawn. She and her husband Richard had adopted Mel, one of the Vick-tory  victims, nearly two years ago. After meeting Mel, you could see why Dawn was bound and determined to get the dough for the dogs.


At Vick’s facility, Mel had been a bait dog. In the canine fighting world, a bait dog is used to trained the aggressive dogs. They are put in the arenas with their mouths taped for those in training to tear apart. That was the life Mel knew from puppyhood. Even now after round-the-clock rehab, he’s still tentative about what is around the corner. No, he shows absolutely no signs of aggression. According to the Hunters, he’s never even barked. When he needs to go out, the five-year old pit bull quietly sits by the door. If it’s nighttime, the Hunter’s other dog, Pumpkin, will bark to let the humans know the little guy needs to go “to the bathroom.”  According to Richard, Mel also helps Pumpkin. For example, the “rawhides” they like are too tough for 16-year-old Pumpkin to  chew on his own. So Mel chews them until they’re soft enough and then turns them over to Pumpkin.

Amy Childers

Since this car wash was not Dawn’s first rodeo, she and her kids and ex- had it all organized and ready to face come what may. Good thing! Folks dropped off their cars, motorcycles and even a hearse at her company’s front door along with a $20 donation. While the cars

Lydia Pritchett and Pebbles

were being handwashed meticulously, guests wandered to the back of the building to play games (dunk booth, toss games, etc.). Then they strolled across the street to the parking lot that had been converted into an oasis of a never-ending buffet, dining area with

Gavin Cook

beautiful floral arrangements and a drying area for the vehicles. How did Dawn stave off the heat and blistering sun? She had white tents topped with fluttering lines of blue and whiteballoons. As an added precaution, she arranged to have portable A/C units everywhere. Amy Childers shared one of the units with her young lab, Princess. Lydia Pritchett made sure her Pomeranian Pebbles had plenty of water. Gavin Cook flirted outrageously with all within eyesight. When you’re two-years old, you can easily get away with it even if your mom and dad are laughing.

By 1:30 p.m. Best Friends regional gift advisor Nora Della Maddalena reported that $5,000 had been raised

Nora Della Maddalena

in just the first hour-and-a-half. When asked if she had ever raised money at a car wash before, Nora said, “No.” Was it what she expected? “”I had no idea what to expect,” Nora said.


As the guests ate and drank water and Red Bull, Dawn’s staff hand-dried the cars. But that’s not to say there were no surprises.

Big SUV’s and pickup were a bit of a challenge for itty-bitty Jernae, but she didn’t let that stop her. And then there was that hearse.

Erica Moss

When Georgia transplant Erica Moss started drying it off, she thought it was going to be a snap until its lady passenger “ET” opened the door to reveal a “for-real-looking-corpse” in the


back. It, like ET’s fangs, were not the real thing.

While the outside activities were moving smoothly, it was wild and crazy inside. On the second floor a doggy day care had been set up, where the pooches partied hardy and wore out their human caretakers.

Pet psychic Sandra Larson was giving readings to help raise the day’s total. In working with Mel, Sandra reported that “Being aggressive was never in him. That’s why he wound up a bait dog. He is beautiful. He has a peaceful energy. He doesn’t mind sharing the story. He just doesn’t want people to feel sorry for him. The day he starts barking, you’ll know he’s” made it.

Madeline and Ed Barkand Rawlins Gilliland

By 3 p.m., the take had increased to $11,000. The sun and heat continued their onslaught outside, but people and vehicles kept coming. Madeline and Ed Bark were joined by Rawlins Gilliland, who got a face wash, not kiss, by the pit bull sitting next to Richard at the next table.

Dawn Rizos

Oh, you were wondering about how local groups work together to fit in with this tale. Well, Dawn’s business is The Lodge, a gentlemen’s club. The people providing the car wash, the food and the babysitting of pooches were members of her staff and her family, who pitched in. Since 100% of the day’s proceeds were going to Best Friends, they all put in extra time and effort to break past records. . .  and they did just that.

Just the week before members of the New Friends New Lives, an organization that helps women who have been victimized by the sex industry, had dropped by The Lodge to share information about their organization and provide gifts for staff members. When Dawn, who had not been at The Lodge at the time, learned of the visit, she and the girls wrote thank you notes to NFNL. You see, Dawn realized that she and NFNL were both on the same page — the prevention of the victimization of the vulnerable, whether they’re women or animals.

BTW, the car wash raised $17,000 — and Mel’s spirits. We’re still waiting to hear him bark.  

Reebok Heroes Celebrity Baseball Game’s Star Power Stole Fan Base But Don’t Tell Dr Pepper Ballpark Security

If Dallas Sheriff Lupe Valdez is in need of guards at Dallas County Jail, she should check out the security staff at Frisco’s Dr Pepper Ballpark. More about that later.

Charlie McKinney and Blue Sox ballboys/girls

Last Saturday Charlie McKinney didn’t look like a man who had been through “a six-month ordeal” in putting all the pieces together for the Reebok Heroes Celebrity Baseball Game. It started 10 years ago when Charlie, Lance McIlheney and Brian Nadurak decided that the kids of Dallas needed to built self-confidence through sports, educational and cultural activities. But this project needed funding. That’s when

Mike Modano

Charlie thought of his friends and clients Mark Cuban and Mike Modano. It just so happened that Mike’s foundation was also concerned about helping children. After some discussions and brainstorming, it was decided that a hardball game would be held to benefit both The Heroes Foundation and The Mike Modano Foundation.

That was step one. Next was the logistics of where, when, who and who. For 10 years, Charlie and the boys have managed to get thousands of fans to watch celebrities play in the blazing summer heat.

For the tenth year Charlie and the boys of celebrity summer baseball took to the field to add $$ to the coffers.

Donald Faison and Tornados mascot

But before the first base hit took place, there was a heck of a lot of activity both in the stands and on the field. From a fashion perspective, the only ones more covered up than the players were the various team mascots wearing torturous costumes in 100-degree temperatures. At one point the Tornados’ mascot was seen flat on home base. Immediately White Sox/actor Donald “Scrubs” Faison started artificial respiration, including mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. Oh, wait, it was just a joke, but it wouldn’t have surprised anyone if it had been the real thang.

Mark Cuban and friends

But the real thang was Mark Cuban arriving on the field. From fans to celebrity players, he was “The Man.” Everyone wanted to be photographed with him, get his autograph or get just five minutes of his time. Somehow he managed to accommodate the vast majority including the media. At one point in juggling interviews just yards away from the fans lined along the fence, someone shouted, “Don’t, Mark! They aren’t your friends.”

Mark Cuban

Was he going to play? Which team? What position? Nope. “I played eight straight years. I was the MVP last year,” he recalled. But this year he was warming the bench because “I tore my rotator cuff.” But he wasn’t alone. Beside him in the Blue

Larry O'Brien NBA Championship Trophy

Sox dugout sat the Larry O’Brien NBA Championship Trophy. (Editor’s note: Make sure that you always refer to it with the full name. Mark is very picky about giving it full credit.) No matter how cool players and other VIP’s were, everybody wanted a peek or a touch of the Larry O’Brien NBA Championship Trophy. That explains all the fingerprints on the poor thing.

But before heading to the dugout, the players warmed up and got to know each other. Michael Clarke The Green Mile Duncan told Cubes, “I’ve been dying to see you.” Mark responded, “I know you have.” Michael told bystanders that he was so happy that Dallas won the NBA championship, partly because Cuban is one of the more unique owners in sports. “He reminds me of Charlie Finley,” Duncan said. Still within earshot, Cuban turned on his heels and said, “Wh-aaa–tt?!” Duncan explained, “He stands by his team.” Whew!

Michael Clarke Duncan and Mark Cuban

Admitting that he would have rather been on the beach in Malibu, Duncan was in North Texas because of his friend, the actor/player Geoff Wedding Crashers Stults. While Michael was happy that they’ll be appearing together in Fox TV’s The Finder, a spinoff of Bones, Saturday was something else entirely. Michael thought it was going to be a softball game. This hardball situation was another thing entirely. Cuban’s advice: “All you gotta do is put the wood on the ball.” Easy for him to say, huh?

Austin Igo and Dez Bryant

In another part of the field, Dez Bryant was posing for a picture with Austin Igo. Martellus Bennett had more people lined up for autographs than an In-N-Out. When asked how his mom was doing, Martellus pointed to the stands and said, “She’s great and up there!”

Lara Beth Seager

In the White Sox dugout, special event planner Lara Beth Seager had morphed from Friday night‘s glittery princess to very cool baseball aficionado in shorts, tennis shoes, T-shirt and fedora. Splitting her time between a clipboard and a Mac laptop, she was right at home working. No playing for this girl.

It was time to start the game. As most of the media lined up to photograph the introduction of the teams, the national anthem and the landing of parachutists, Dr Pepper Ballpark security staff were telling other media like the Fort Worth Star-Telegram to clear the field. Strange? But rules are rules, so some stayed and others were banished to the bleachers.

Bradie James

After all the niceties were completed, Dallas Cowboy Bradie James threw out the ceremonial first pitch. The Blue Sox led off at bat and quickly scored. The Blue Sox’s Kevin Mench ripped a double driving in a run. Later he was thrown out at home, trying to score.

In the meantime, ESPN Radio’s Ben and Skin interviewed White Sox Mark Modano, who was playing first base. Explaining his involvement with the day’s game, he said, “I wanted to do something to show my appreciation to the kids and the people who mean so much to me.” Asked about his moving to Detroit to play for the Red Wings, he answered, “I had to go to Detroit. I don’t regret it. Dallas meant a lot to me. I fell in love with it.” Was he interested in ownership of the Dallas Stars? “If someone’s got the money, I can make decisions for ’em.”

Carl Sewell Jr. and Brian Nadurak

Now the White Sox were up. Dez led off, with Modano hitting third. Alas, they went out 1-2-3. A couple of innings later, Carl Sewell Jr. scored a run after sliding head-first into third and then racing home.

But all the activity was not on the field. American Idol runner up David Archuleta was escorted to the Blue Sox dugout to wait his turn to sing God Bless America. Afterwards he was to return to L.A., rehearse for a week and then immediately begin a tour of Indonesia, the Philippines, Vietnam and Malaysia. As for his American Idol obligations, he said he had completed most of them and was looking forward to “being released and doing my own thing.” He was then photographed with Cuban and the Larry O’Brien NBA Championship Trophy, and then Frisco Mayor Maher Maso and his clan. David’s smile was tireless.

After checking with mother hen Lara Beth, David in a Heroes T-shirt was escorted on field to sing. Before he started, the announcer recognized the returning troops from Iraq and Afghanistan seated in the stands. The crowd started chanting, “USA! USA!” Then the announcer reported that to assist Shannon Stone‘s family, a collection was being taken up.

As the sun finally set, with the White Sox dugout in the shade and the Blue Sox dugout catching the last glimmers of sun, the end result was White Sox 3, Blue Sox 15. The fireworks show helped the Blues celebrate and the Whites forget their loss.

Oh, what about the security staff? Well, it seems that a Whataburger check presentation didn’t come off as planned. No check. The very vigilant Dr Pepper Ballpark security would not let Lara Beth on to the field with the check, despite the fact that she was in charge of the entire event. After an exchange of information, she was allowed on the field, but not in time for the official presentation. No problem. Lara Beth just adjusted the program and had the presentation at the next inning’s break.

Lesson learned: Don’t mess with the Dr Pepper Ballpark security. It’s their way or no way.

’til Midnight At The Nasher Cools Off The July Heat With Misters, Hard Night’s Day And “Across The Universe”

The popular ’til Midnight at the Nasher is meeting the challenge of the July heat with cooling misters courtesy of Reliant Energy. You know those misters are also great for complexions.

Tonight’s program starting at 7 p.m. with a concert by Hard Night’s Day will feature “Across the Universe” at 9 p.m. If you have some love beads or lava lamps, you’ll be a stand out! On the other hand, bell bottoms might be a tad bit warmish.

The Nasher Sculpture Center doors open at 6 p.m., if you want to get a primo seat. Dang, it’s too late to order a Wolfgang Puck picnic basket, but make a note to pre-order next time because you know you can’t bring food in.

Remember: Members get in free.



Share-A-Date: 2011 Methodist Health System Folsom Leadership Award

Trevor Rees-Jones

Wednesday, October 5: Years ago the world associated the name “Trevor Rees-Jones” with the bodyguard involved in Princess Diana’s fatal car accident. However, the name conjured up an entirely different face and type for North Texas locals. Their Trevor was a nice, young Highland Park fella who worked hard and had earned degrees from Dartmouth and SMU Law School. After a stint at practicing oil and gas reorganizing law at Thompson & Knight, he left law and plunged into the oil fields himself in 1984.

Now fast-forward. Dallas’ Trevor discovered a gusher of a success in the Barnett Shale and set about sharing his wealth with numerous nonprofits especially those involving children and health.

With all of this in mind, the Methodist Health System Foundation will present the 2011 Methodist Health System Folsom Leadership Award to Trevor at a dinner in the Hilton Anatole Hotel. 

(For the new kids in the hood, the award recognizes individuals whose demonstrated commitment and excellence in community leadership emulates the achievements of former Dallas Mayor Robert S. Folsom.)

Methodist Health System Foundation President and CEO April Box Chamberlain said, “Trevor is a committed and dynamic leader who has enthusiastically used the fruits of his business success to improve in tangible ways the quality of life and life circumstances for those less fortunate, especially abused and neglected children.  Along with support from his wife Jan, Trevor is the embodiment of community leadership and we are proud to honor him with this award.” 

Chairing the event will be fellow Highland Park graduate Jim Francis, who has arranged for his good buds Laura and George W. Bush to serve at honorary chairs.

If you recall last year’s dinner honoring Pat and Emmitt Smith had a surprise presenter — Mark Cuban. Those Methodist Health System Foundation folks know how to honor VIPs.

Mandy And Mike Modano’s Posse Warms Up At The Majestic For Reebok Heroes Celebrity Baseball Game With “Superman” Man

Mike Modano

It hasn’t been the same since Mike Modano left town to join the Detroit Red Wings. Thank heaven the

Mandy Modano

Reebok Heroes Celebrity Baseball Game is an occasion that like a magnet draws Mike and his babe-wife Mandy (aka Willa Ford) back to Big D.

Lara Beth Seager

Friday the ultra-bright beautiful couple was the center of attention for the pre-game party at the Majestic Theatre. The Majestic? Really? Isn’t that sorta a mothball location for such a hip crowd? Not after its recent refreshening under the management of the City of Dallas and a shot of Lara Beth Seager. Who’s she? If you’re part of the Charlotte Jones Anderson entourage, you know. Besides being a Lutheran minister’s wife, Lara Beth is the petite blonde event planner who turned Mia Cocina into a South Beach party palace with Richie Sambora leading a parade of Caribbean-styled drummers during the Super Bowl.

Like Tinkerbell wielding her magical dust, Lara Beth turned the Majestic into a nightclub Friday. The reception was held in the lobby around an elevated black stage with a string quartet. Did folks don black tie and long silk gowns? Heck, no. It was Dallas chic with gents in pulled-out shirts, jeans and boots or sneakers. Okay, so a couple of the dudes went St. Mark’s style casual with shirts tucked in and blazers with khakis.

Mallory Vaughan

The ladies on the other hand, like Mallory Vaughan, dressed up the fashion statement of the evening in snug, short outfits or long lounging gowns. The vast majority must have had the same colorist because a certain color of blonde radiated throughout the party. The bare-shouldered gals were ready for anything from dancing to posing for photos. But they weren’t prepared for the talents of the Majestic A/C system. Thanks to the on-top-of-things staff it was cranking out 67 degrees to counter the triple digit temperatures  outside.

One of the top topics of the evening was supposed to be, “Who’s going to be the mystery entertainer?” Just the day before Dallas Morning News society specialist Alan Peppard had hinted that presenting sponsor Tim “Mr. Joule Hotel” Headington‘s entertainment connections with Justin Timberlake, Martin Scorsese and the Jonas Brothers might have anyone of galaxy status perform. Someone mentioned that in past years Whoopi Goldberg and Dennis Miller had been part of the action.

But the question was rarely raised. Instead the gathering was more like a class reunion with people catching up. MIA was Mark Cuban, who has been part of the action since the fundraiser started 10 years ago. Word rippled through the room that he was flying back to Dallas from LA and would be at the game Saturday. But would he bring the Larry O’Brien NBA Championship Trophy? Thumbs up on that one. Whew!!!

Mandy and Mike Modano

There was no doubt on who was the homecoming king and queen of the evening — Mike and Mandy. Arriving early and checking the layout, they were surrounded by friends non-stop.  When asked how his baseball skills were, Mike gave that Modano smile and joked, “Very average.” He figured that he would play either first base or short stop, but was way of making the long throw from short to first.  Then he added that the game was secondary to raising money for The Heroes Foundation and The Mike Modano Foundation.

Speaking of money and baseball, Kirby Schlegel reported that he

had sold his Triple-A minor-league baseball team, the Tacoma Rainiers, this spring. However,before selling the team, he had just

Kirby Schlegel

completed a $36 million renovation for the team’s stadium and picked up a mega ring for the team’s winning the Pacific Coast League championship.

Then the doors opened to the theater that impressed even the most partied veteran. Lara Beth had had a black floor constructed 3½ feet high covering two-thirds of the theater’s seating and its stage. No, it wasn’t wobbly flooring that makes you feel like you’re experiencing a San Francisco quake. It was built to last, or, at least until the party was over.

This elevation of the walk-around area plus lighting allowed guests to get a more up-close view of the balconies, interior designs and beauty of the Majestic from a past-gone era.

To accommodate the 175 guests, Lara Beth had two seating areas. Within the velvet rope were velvet covered couches and easy chairs for the ultra swells. For the newer members and less financially involved in past games, she had cafe tables with chairs.

Courtney Kerr and Matt Nordgren

In the center of the velvet seating area was a black elevated stage with a piano for the mystery performer. But before “Mystery” appeared, the chatter continued. Bravo’s “Most Eligible” co-star Matt Nordgren was locked in a long conversation with Charlotte Anderson, while Matt’s co-star Courtney Kerr explained that the reality show would “portray Dallas in a really positive light, from a single person’s” point of view.

David Archuleta

American Idol runner-up David Archuleta was in the back of the room with his dad, Jeff. No, he wasn’t the mystery performer. He was scheduled to sing at Saturday’s game. Then he was headed to the Philippines for a concert.

Just as everyone was settling down, Mike appeared in the right side balcony with mic in hand. He welcomed everyone and thanked them for their support over the last 10 years. Special kudos went to Charlie McKinney and Donnie Nelson, Lara Beth. He also added, “This is the tenth and maybe the last one; we’ll see. But, we’ve been saying that for four years!”

John Ondrasik

Then he introduced the evening’s mystery entertainer — Five For Fighting (aka John Ondrasik). Those sitting near the Modano front row couch were pleased as John carrying his guitar took his place on the stage in dark blue open shirt and jeans. Others around the room shifted eyeballs and muttered out of the side of their mouths, “Who’s dat?” A few of the techie types whipped out their smartphones to learn more about the man who wrote “Superman.”

No need to Google. During the performance, they learned from John lots of stuff about him. . . especially his love of sports. Some highlights included:

  • He’s been lifelong Los Angeles Lakers fan. “I’d like to publicly compliment Donnie and Mark; congratulations on your NBA championship. Yeah! That hurts.”;
  • Five For Fighting is a hockey term for five minutes in the penalty box (Duh!);
  • Modano has scored more goals against his Los Angeles Kings than any other team. . . “That’s not cool,” he jokes.
  • His song “Chances” was used in the top-grossing sports film in history, “The Blind Side”;
  • He wrote “Superman” in just 45 minutes.

In the back of the theater Geoff “Wedding Crashers” Stults was swigging a beer with professional baseball player Kevin Mench.

John couldn’t let the past Super Bowl pass without a story. He told how he, his 72-year old father and 10-year old son headed to Longview to spend the night before the big game. But thanks to the icy roads and lack of motel rooms, the threesome stayed overnight in 10-degree temps in the parking lot of Waffle House.

As he sang a patriotic song, a video was shown on the backdrop. He finishes the song with “They’re are amazing people!” The crowd rewarded him with smartphone videotaping and a standing ovation. John thanks the crowd and says, “Only in Texas do they do that.”

Just before he left the stage, he couldn’t help but make one plea: “I know there are a lot of resources in this room. Somebody, please buy the Dodgers!”

Post-show show

Before John’s foot touched the base of the stage, a spotlight lit up the left balcony where a DJ took over with “Don’t Stop Til You Get It On“. On cue confetti showered down as the backdrop lifted to reveal a laser show and stages with pose-dancing gals with minimal costumes. But don’t get the


impression that the evening was turning R-rating. Thanks to an overly aggressive fog machine and the height of the go-go-girl staging, the gals were hazy beauties out of touch but very interesting conversation pieces.

Besides everyone had to head home to prepare for Saturday’s scorcher of a baseball game at Frisco’s Dr Pepper Ball Park.

Share-A-Date: The Yes Event

Laurie Ann Goldman

Thursday, November 10:  SPANX has saved many derrières since its establishment 10 years ago. Originally an undergarment to slim off those oops! bulges, it expanded to apparel and swimsuits. You probably remember it being one of Oprah’s favorites. What does SPANX have to do with the Legacy Senior Communities Women’s Auxiliary‘s The Yes Event? They managed to have SPANX CEO Laurie Ann Goldman as the featured speaker for the Yes luncheon at the Westin Galleria benefiting the Legacy at Preston Hollow.

Don’t tell anyone but in addition to hearing about SPANX’s story, Laurie Ann will also be giving $50 gift cards for SPANX to all attendees.

Photo provided by The Legacy Senior Communities Women's Auxiliary.

Share-A-Date: 4th Annual Blondes vs. Brunettes Dallas

Brunettes 2010

Saturday, August 6: The NFL lockout continues, but that’s not to say that football training isn’t taking place. There are players who are grunting, running and getting bruised in preparation for the big game of the summer. No, no, no. We’re not talking about newlywed Tony and the Cowboys. It’s the v-e-r-y dedicated Blondes and Brunettes prepping for the 4th Annual Blondes vs. Brunettes powder puff football game.

Before you go thinking that the gals reapply lipstick and check their acrylics in between plays, you obviously have not seen past match ups. The females and their coaches take the game seriously. They’ve been holding workouts and studying strategy. The Brunettes are hungry for a win this year after last three years of losing to the natural and unnatural blondes.

Because of the incredible success of the past four years, BvB guru Erin Finegold has moved the game from Highlander Stadium to SMU’s Ford Stadium with a 7:30 p.m. start time. Whoa! Is Cowboys Stadium in their future?

Don’t know about that, but do know that this Saturday, the two teams are holding BvB Rockin Auction at Amanda Dunbar Studio to add to the coffers of the Alzheimer’s Association of Great Dallas. From 7:30 to 10:30 p.m. there will be silent and live auctions and lots of blondes and brunettes.

Bargain alert: If you make a $25 or more donation, you get in the game and after-party at Bryan Street Tavern.

One more thang: Don’t forget your sunscreen, hat and sunglasses for the game unless you like pain and suffering.

July Is Busting Out All Over With Share-A-Dates

It’s official. July is “Share-A-Date Month” in Dallas. MySweetCharity’s in-box is jammed with all types of events for the upcoming year. . . and beyond.

This is great news because it means Dallas is going to be busier than Office Depot the first week of school.

The greater news is that a whole lot of $$ is going to be raised because of the people who are hard at work plotting to make these events out of this world.

The bad news is going to be if you don’t get your reservations/tickets now before they’re all gone.

Keep sending more dates to “share.” We love being overworked for good.

Share-A-Date: Simply Summer . . . Fabulously Fall

Simply Summer. . . Fabulously Fall

Wednesday, August 24: The last hurrah of the summer will sizzle this year at Neiman Marcus NorthPark. It’s the “Simply Summer . . . Fabulously Fall”  benefiting Turtle Creek Recovery Center. Leave it to co-chairs Kristi Bare, Maggie Cooke Kipp, Nancy Gopez, Margaret Keliher and Cindy Stager to put their well-coiffed heads together and expand on the Simply Summer vehicle from the past.

According to Kristi, “With a new location of Neiman Marcus NorthPark and the addition of Lafayette 148 New York, ‘Simply Summer…Fabulously Fall’ seemed the perfect name.”

In addition to the name change, the gals have arranged to have DJ’s Jennifer Miller and Paul Paredes providing the music, an informal fashion show featuring Lafayette 148 New York, a Le Metier de Beaute lash bar, Lipstick Fortune Teller, a photo stand and other goodies plus some surprises.

Did we mention that Lafayette 148’s designer Edward Wilkerson will be on hand? That’s important because if you purchase a patron ticket, you get to rub shoulders with him at a private cocktail reception that night.

BTW, that cute logo on the left for Simply Summer. . . Fabulously Fall was designed by Edward. Nice touch! But then what would you expect when Neiman’s is involved?

Grovel Alert: Cattle Baron’s Ball Edging Toward Sold Out Status Thanks To Baron Sponsors Party Developments

Whoa, ponies! Looks like Cattle Baron’s Ball is nearing “Sold Out” status, so groveling might become necessary. This ramping up of ticket sales is the result of CCB chair Jennifer Dix and her gals deciding to change things around for the very private Baron Sponsors Party that precedes the 7 p.m. start time for the October 15th gala at Southfork.

What changes, you ask?

Clint Black

What you already knew — unlike years past when one of the gala headliners snuck into the Barons Sponsors Party and did a meet-and-greet in a private spot for the toppest-dollar sponsors, Clint Black has been brought on board just to perform at the ultra-exclusive pre-party. That in itself got tickets selling fast. Duh!

Now Jennifer has managed to sweet talk Clint into working the crowd at the sponsors’ party. But the uber sponsors will still have their private howdy-doody with Clint. 

And, yes, there are still more new developments!

The Baron Sponsors Party is moving indoors. Since it might get a little cozy in the traditional party house (“Ewing Mansion”), it will be held at another indoor facility at Southfork.

Hey, that’s not to say the mega-shindig is anything but glittering. Heck, no. Not when Tom Addis is up to his magical stuff with the theme of “A Rhinestone Cowboy.” Then don’t forget Darius Rucker will be on the Dr Pepper Main Stage and Dierks Bentley will be entertaining on the Bank of America Live Auction Stage.

So, if you haven’t gotten your reservation, you’d better hustle. And if you’ve already locked down your spot, rethink it. You might want to up the ante because the perks are only getting better and better.

And, yes, before you ask — there is a backup plan!

Share-A-Date: 26th Annual Dallas Women’s Foundation Luncheon

Mavis Leno

Monday, October 24: Say the name “Leno” and immediately late-night laughs come to mind. Ah, but that’s just the Jay-half of the Leno household. The late-night host’s better half, Mavis, may not be a bedtime staple, but on the international stage of women’s rights, she’s in the spotlight. For years, Mavis has been a leading advocate for Afghanistan women and girls and their struggle for equality.

Dallas Women’s Foundation‘s Dawna Richter and Shawna Wilson have arranged for Mavis to be on stage for the DWF’s annual luncheon at the Hilton Anatole. Instead of a lecture or speech, Dawna and Shawna have scheduled CNN producer/Muslim journalist Maria Ebrahimiji to interview Mavis.

Tickets are not only available but going as fast as seats at “The Tonight Show.”

Photo provided by Dallas Women's Foundation

USA Film Festival’s TexFest Showcases Films In Texas By Texans Tonight At Angelika

Texas is giving Hollywood a run for its money. Besides all the hyped reality shows, independent filmmakers are flourishing like kids at summer camp.

Tonight the USA Film Festival is partnering with the Texas Association of Film &Tape Professionals to present TexFest showcasing shot-in-Texas-by-Texans films.

The three films being screened at the Angelika Film Center at Mockingbird Station will be:

  1. 7:00 p.m. — I Become Gilgamesh,” written and directed by Juan Francisco de la Guardia
  2. 7:00 p.m. — “Dirty Laundry,” written and directed by Sabra Young
  3. 8:00 p.m. — “God’s Pub,” written and directed by Jay Gormley

 Q&A’s will take place with the directors and other guests following the showings.

Tickets are $10.