How You Can Help Without Leaving The House

If the past few days of discussion about the recent puppy auction has made you want to do something, here are a couple of ideas:

  1. Do a “Pass-2-10.” What’s that? You tell 10 friends about the puppy auction ordinance and ask them to tell 10 friends and so on. The message can be as simple as, “It’s illegal to auction live animals for fundraising in the city of Dallas. . . pass it on to 10.” Sure, it may not be like an article in the Dallas Morning News or a story on a local TV station, but word-of-mouth is a powerful tool and you can put it to work.
  2. Dallas Animal Services is holding its “Creature Comforts” Sunday from 1 to 4 p.m. Yes, there will be fun stuff (holiday pet photos, pooches in holiday attire and reduced adoption fees), but there is much more serious stuff. . . like they need sheets, towels and bath mats for the animals. Don’t you have some old towels that are pretty frayed and taking up space on the shelves? Seriously, do you really need them? The animals do. And if you happen to stop by the pet store, pick up some moist cat treats, rawhide dog chews and/or canned pet food. If you don’t want to venture out, you can always donate online. The DAS could especially use $$ to purchase beds for the cats and dogs. The goal is 231 beds and they’ve gotten 63 donated so far.

From American Country Awards, NasherSALON To Frisco CD Signing, Kristin Chenoweth Is A Busy Gal This Week

Folks are talking about Kristin Chenoweth‘s co-hosting the American Country Awards last night with Trace Atkins. Next on her agenda is a checkup with her doctor today. Then she’s headed to Dallas for on-stage chats at Booker T. Washington and the NasherSalon Thursday.

Don’t even think of attending unless you have a ticket. The events are so sold out.

Ah, but if you really, truly want to see the diminutive singer/actress, head to Barnes & Noble in Frisco Friday. She’ll be signing copies of Some Lessons Learned at 6:30, but the wristband handout will start at 9 a.m.

Let’s face it. The gal is as busy as a gift wrapper the week before Christmas.

Sneak Peek Of Saturday’s Crystal Charity Ball’s “Tis The Season”

Crystal Charity Ball entrance

Just back from checking out the preparations for Saturday night’s Crystal Charity Ball’s “Tis the Season” at the Hilton Anatole. It’s going to be a glorious exposition of white, silver and grandeur. From evergreens lightly coated with faux snow to tableclothes appearing to be layers of white petals, it’s a holiday wonderland.

With the weather playing havoc for other events in town like the Children’s Medical Center’s Holiday Parade and the White Rock Marathon, the CCB has taken precautions to prevent guests from suffering the pangs of rain and wind even before they enter the gala. The walkway leading  to the Anatole is protected by clear siding.

Crystal Charity Ball flowers

Upon entering the Anatole, the fragrance of flowers marvelously sets the feel for a flourish of the holidays. There must not be a flower in the city limits of Dallas because they’re all at the Anatole.

As Freezing Temperatures Invade The Area, Let’s Cover Everything

While some were shopping over the Thanksgiving holidays, others were “editing” their closets and trunks. For those in the latter category, if you found some old blankets, ask yourself, “Do I absolutely need them?” Couldn’t you use the space? Well, someone or something else sure could use them. 

The Girl Scouts of Northeast Texas has once again joined up with Christine Cook‘s Sleep Experts to collect new and “gently used” blankets for the Family Gateway. Just drop them off and the gals will take it from there.

Now, if the stored-away blankets is more of the un-gently used variety, take it to the Dallas Animal Services. The critters love to snuggle up during these frigid days and nights. If all of your blankets are too pristine for dogs and cats, then think about making a donation.DAS’s Jody Jones and her crew will find the best bedding bargains for your money.

Just In: Lee Papert Named Dallas Film Society’s New President And CEO

Sarah and Lee Papert

We said earlier today that the announcement of the Dallas Film Society‘s new president/CEO would happen soon. Boy, were we right! Word is just being made public that Lee Papert is bringing his 20 years of business experience and 12 years of development marketing experience in the nonprofit sector to the position.

According to DFS Chairman of the Board of Directors Lynn McBee, “Lee was an outstanding candidate for this high-profile position. His extensive experience in the Dallas nonprofit field, coupled with his astute business acumen and passion for film, made the search committee’s decision unanimous in the selection of our new president and CEO. We are absolutely thrilled that he has agreed to take the helm and lead the Dallas Film Society into a new and increasingly successful era.”

Prior to taking his position, Lee was director of marketing and development for the Trinity River and Dogwood Canyon Audubon Centers, executive director of the Arts District Friends and the first director of development for the Dallas Wind Symphony.

His volunteer involvement has included past board membership of the Dallas Architecture Foundation/Dallas Center for Architecture, the Leadership Dallas Alumni Association and the advisory boards of the Greater Dallas Youth Orchestra and Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts. In addition to being past president of the Shakespeare Dallas Board of Directors and a past member of the St. Mark’s School of Texas Alumni Board, he is a graduate of the Dallas Chamber’s Leadership Dallas program and the Business Council for the Arts’ Leadership Arts program.

“I am delighted to have the opportunity to be a part of the Dallas Film Society team,” said Lee. “Tanya Foster did an incredible job in continuing to raise the profile and membership base of the Dallas Film Society. I hope to build upon this solid platform and work not only to celebrate film and filmmakers as art and artists, but also to raised the visibility and appreciation for Dallas as a destination amongst her citizens and the many who will come here for the annual Dallas International Film Festival (April 12-22, 2012).”

In the meantime, why not buy a membership in the DFS. With the gift-giving-holidays upon us, it would be a truly unique gift for the film lover in your life.

Ebby Halliday Acers’ Grateful Four

Ebby Halliday Acers (File photo)

Let’s start off the “Grateful Four” series with a true veteran of Thanksgiving Days — first lady of Dallas residential real estate Ebby Halliday Acers. Ebby, who is celebrating her 100th Thanksgiving, says:

  1. I am grateful for my 35 years with Maurice Acers during which time he did so many constructive things for our company, Texas and for the world.
  2. I am grateful for my longevity – 100 years and 9 months on December 9!  My secret – don’t drink, don’t smoke and don’t retire.
  3. I am grateful for my continued good health and a good mind.
  4. I am grateful for my family and also for my work family, which is comprised of almost 1,600 fine Associates in 30 offices that serve more than 12,000 square miles in North Texas.

If you want to fill your mind with more Ebby wisdom on gratitude, check this article out.

November 16 MySweetCharity Round Robin: Communities Foundation, Paws Cause And Chi Omega Christmas Market

As part of the Dallas merry-go-round of activities stirring up philanthropy for the nonprofits both now and in the future, last Wednesday night lived up to the “never-say-slow-down” motto.


Brent Christopher

Even before Santa settles into his chair across the way at NorthPark, the Communities Foundation of Texas was celebrating with a big crowd the 3,000+ grants it had distributed this year. In the lobby of its headquarters, CFT President/CEO Brent “Mr. Bowtie” Christopher and his staff had arranged to have five recipient groups on hand including the American Heart Association, Life Shines Bright/Methodist Health System, Entrepreneurs for North Texas, the Texas High School Project and the DonorBridge/Japan-American Society. If you’re not very familiar with all of these organizations, you understand the thinking behind the selections — to showcase the diversity of CFT contributions.

Karen Shuford

It was also a very diverse gathering of benefactors (Bobby Lyle, Karen Shuford, Jane Pierce) and beneficiaries (The Family Place’s Paige Flink, Attitudes & Attire’s Lyn Berman), with restaurateur Abraham Salum making sure no one went hungry.  

Regarding the present situation, Bobby admitted, “We need a better economy–and rain.”

Communities Foundation of Texas logo

At 7 the crowd adjourned to the auditorium, where Brent unveiled the CFT’s new logo designed by O&H Brand Design. Why is such a presentation a big deal? Well, the last time CFT’s logo was changed was 30 years ago — three decades during which the organization’s growth and evolution had changed dramatically.




Mary and Alberto Tomas opened their studio/gallery on Dragon Street for best friends, both human and four-legged types. While there was a pound full of two-legged critters, the tail-wagging variety was represented by Panda, a one-year-and-three-month old Shih Tzu, that escorted KC Cermak.

The occasion was a silent auction of dog and cat bowls benefiting the SPCA, and we’re not talking your stainless steel or plastic types. These little gems were created by such artists as Rhea Ann Chamness. Early in the evening one of hers was going for $125.

Rhea Ann Chamness

Married 34 years, the artistic Tomases had hardly had time to recover from Mary’s latest project — creating 210 pieces for the new Omni Dallas Hotel. Her reaction to the project? “Dallas has given a nod to the artists” with the program. “I’ve never seen Dallas come together like that before. I’m proud of Dallas.”




On the other side of Dallas City Hall in the Dallas Convention Center, the Christmas shopping was already in high gear. Those owl-loving Chi Omegas were hosting 500 guests for a sneak preview of the weekend’s Chi Omega Christmas Market. Everything from holiday decoration, gifts (even garish sweaters) to art were there for Chi O’s, GDI’s and whoever. One booth offered “Ladies Pajamas 3 Sets/$40.”

Christy Coltrin and Brad Oldham

At 8:30 p.m. sculptor Brad Oldham was center stage in the spotlight as he unveiled his 2012 owl– Sunday, a tawny owl embodying the importance of rest. While it was Brad’s first retail public event for his retail product line, “Pure Sculpture,” this hooter wasn’t his first. Made of “silver infused bronze,” each owl comes in a box with a little leather-bound book. He’s already created three limited edition owls (there are only 450 of each):

  • Barn owl Captain (“he sails the seas of love”)
  • Great horned owl Walter (as in Cronkite) and
  • Burrowing owls John and Abigail (for the president and first lady)  

Chi O’s Charlene Howell and Lynn McBee compared notes on their owl collections. Charlene is the proud owner of 262 owl Christmas ornaments and had just added Walter to her nest.  

November 15 MySweetCharity Round Robin: Billiard Ball And Texas Ballet

It seems like nonprofits were trying to squeeze in as many teasers (Fly Away With The Bridge Preview’s party at the Marquee Grill in Highland Park Village and shop-a-thon at Stella McCartney,  Q Custom Clothiers and Anne Fontaine) and patron parties (Friends of Wednesday’s Child at Place on Perry) as possible last Tuesday with the Thanksgiving holiday approaching. Some of the other activities included:


The Marquee Grill was the place to be definitely. The question was which party was your party. The ever-adorable hostesses at the entrance patiently directed guests — “Billiard Ball party straight ahead up the stairs” and “Bridge Network up the stairs and to your left.”  After a while they probably could spot who was going to which party. Those with ties straight ahead for the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Dallas; those tie-less ones turn left at the head of the stairs.

Becky Frey

Among the tied-up set were Becky Frey, Lynn McBee, Paul Stewart and Lydia and Dan Novakov and Bobby Nail, who

Bobby Nail

married Dedman daughter Patty in 2008 and is the newest BGCD board member. Guarding the PA system was Scott Murray, who admitted that his son had set it up and he was simply there to turn on a switch and to make sure no one stepped on the equipment. Wife Carole was home dogsitting their granddog, while their daughter gets settled in NYC. . . Bank of America’s Gillian Breidenbach reported that some of the various companies were joining forces to support local efforts instead of going solo. . . . Susan Stanzel was seated in the back of the room, as

Rachel Trowbridge

her daughter/BB Co-chair Rachel Trowbridge and husband/Co-chair Chris Trowbridge started the program without BB Co-chair JB Hayes, who was running late.

Chris Trowbridge

Chris started off reminding the assembled group that for nine years the Robert H. Dedman Lifetime Achievement Award in Philanthropy has been presented to individuals for “generosity shown to those who cannot provide for themselves.” The list of honorees has included Ruth Altshuler, Linda Pitts Custard, Caren Prothro, Dee and Charles Wyly Jr., Henry S. Miller Jr., Gay and Bill Solomon and Bobby Lyle.

Being added to the list this year will be Barbara and Steve Durham, who stood nearby. Having moved from Omaha to Dallas in 1996, the Durhams have been involved with everything from

Barbara Durham

Thanksgiving Square Foundation, Southwest Regional Board of BGCA, Phoenix House, Dallas Symphony, Human Rights initiatives, the Dallas Zoological Society, and the Dallas Museum of Art to this year’s Ebby Halliday 100th birthday party benefiting the Horatio Alger Association.

Taking place on Saturday, February 18, at the Ritz-Carlton, The Billiard Ball’s theme will be “Twenties-Twelve and Putting on the Ritz” with a seated dinner and music by Hunter Sullivan and his 14-piece big band.

First to sign up for a sponsorship were the Durhams’ good friends Jan Miller and Jeff Rich. Ebby also had already committed to a Break Shot sponsorship and had wanted to attend the announcement party, but she had already attended a luncheon and her doctor was restricting her to one event a day.

PriceWaterhouseCoopers agreed to sponsor a Center Pocket and Bell Nunnally & Martin LLP had committed to a Break Shot.

In other words, before the announcement was even made, JB and the Trowbridges had already sold 23 tables.


Across town at the shoppers’ worship center, NorthPark, the exterior entrance of Tiffany & Co. was open, but not for all. Rather, supporters of the Texas Ballet and the upcoming Tutu Chic fashion show/luncheon/champagne fest were allowed entry. Only prob was no one was quite certain who was in charge. But thanks to champagne, who cared! It was a mix of beautiful women checking the counters of trinkets and men in suits and men not in suits.

Richard Lamberston

Ironically as the late Dennis Hopper‘s dotter Marian Hayward was holding a Hayward bag party at the Mansion at the same hour, Tiffany handbag designers Richard Lambertson and John Truex were

John Truex

actually autographing their precious purses as guests bought them.

While Gina Betts, who had made it to the Boys & Girls Club’s Billiard Ball at the Marquee, was jolly on the scene, husband Ken Betts was walking the mall with their six-year old in tow.

Daffan Nettle and Alicia Wood

Luckily Tutu Chic Co-chairs Daffan Nettle and Alicia Wood appeared at 7:17 p.m. to check out the merchandise and talk up the upcoming December 1 event at the Winspear.

Better get your tickets for Tutu because the champagne, Korshak fashions and ballerinas are going to be in prime condition.

The Dallas Foundation Solves Gift Giving For Your Convenience And Generosity

This time of year it’s no surprise to get a holiday card telling you that the sender has made a donation in your name to a charity. It’s lovely and gracious, but. . .  well, wouldn’t you have loved for them to make a donation to a charity that you’re fond of?

Mary Jalonick (File photo)

Or, let’s say you’re the sender. Perhaps you’d like to make a donation in a friend’s name, but, shoot, what is their favorite 501 (c) 3? It’s awkward to call and say, “Hi, I want to make a donation in your name as a gift. What’s your choice?”

Leave it to The Dallas Foundation and its Mary Jalonick to find a perfect win-win situation — the Giving for Good program. It’s oh-so simple and hassle-free.

Here’s how it goes:

Order a Giving Good card at The Dallas Foundation (the cards come in denominations of $25, $50 and $100) and within five business days it’s mailed to the shipping address that you provide.

There is a slight. . . and we do mean slight. . . processing fee, but you can deduct it in your taxes along with your gift card amount to make your accountant so “ho-ho-happy.”

End result: Recipient gets to donate to their fav charity; charity gets a donation; you get to look really good in recipient’s eyes; you get to write it off as a tax deduction; and you didn’t have to bother with finding a parking space.

BTW, this program is available beyond the holidays. We live to make your life charmed.

Arthur Benjamin Is A Lover Of “The Art Of Film” And A Savior Of Critters

Arthur Benjamin and Sundays Hunt (File photo)

In addition to being a lover of celluloid who puts his platinum card where his heart directs, Arthur Benjamin is just plain “Mr. Wonderful” when it comes to animals.

If you see him at Friday’s The Art of Film with John Lithgow at the Hall of State, you might want to congratulate him for making SPC. Sheila Schaffer cry.

Who’s Sheila?

Why would she cry? Check this link and you’ll see.

Oops, did you know that Friday’s TAOF is now in “sold out” status, but you can still try for the standby list.

Jill Rowlett: Autism Treatment Centers Benefit From The Arrangement

Jill Rowlett (File photo)

The MySweetCharity home team can’t be everywhere all the time. That’s when volunteers are forced into service. In this case it’s Jill Rowlett, who filed the following report from Thursday night’s Autism Treatment Centers benefit:

“The party was given to benefit the Autism Treatment Centers at The Arrangement (Toll Road and Alpha) by owner Katherine Snedeker. The large, beautiful space filled with rustic and warm furnishings was decorated for Christmas so I got in the spirit of course and was able to put a dent in my gift list. They have one of a kind, fabulous TX ornaments should you be in need. Katherine went ALL OUT with a great live band, several bars, tubs of beer, and amazing food by caterer Stuart Jochimsen (former owner of Loma Luna restaurant if you recall). He has an authentic chuck wagon which he pulled up in the parking lot and fed all until I though we would take advantage of the gorgeous bedding and stay the night! From tenderloin, ribs, and pulled pork sliders, to bread pudding with mystery flavored whipped cream which was to die for. People were eating it by the spoonfuls. Not me of course…those others with far less social graces. We were dancing while shopping…. a new concept, not illegal in N. Dallas, since Katherine also hired a great live band! For the first time EVER, a band that wasn’t too loud!  

“A great time was had by all. The best news came the next day when Ms. Katherine Generosity said she’d like to make this an annual benefit for the Autism Treatment Centers! I’m just hoping she cleared the date with the caterer and band as well!”

Before Heading To Dallas International Art, Antique & Jewelry Show At Irving Convention Center . . .

While we’re still trying to catch up from last week’s activities, we thought you should know about the Dallas International Art, Antique & Jewelry Show taking place at the newly opened Irving Convention Center at Las Colinas thru Sunday

Irving Convention Center? You know that shiny, new building wedged between Hwy. 114 and Northwest Highway that you pass on your way to DFW International. Wednesday night the top-drawer types (Nancy Dedman, Faye Briggs, Billie Leigh Rippey, Joyce Fox, Lynn McBee, Kelly and Norm Green, etc.) attended a sneak preview of the treasures available for purchase from 100 of the “world’s top exhibitors of fine art, antiques and jewelry.” Chaired by Barbara Daseke, the party of champagne, music and shopping benefited TACA.

The people, the precious trinkets and the place were all grand, but. . . you just knew it was coming. . . be forewarned. The highway construction on Northwest Highway, lack of signage and less-illumination-than-a-wet-match can make the trek to and from a bit challenging, especially at night.

But shoot! Those vendors brought all those gorgeous collectibles from around the world, so what’s a little jaunt to a new place in North Texas.

Just In: Nasher Salon Featuring Kristin Chenoweth Reschuled To December 8

The November 15 Nasher Salon featuring Kristin Chenoweth has been rescheduled to Thursday, December 8. The reason? Her “filming schedule of GCB” demands her presence.

It’s a win-win situation, though. First of all, the folks already holding tickets for the originally scheduled November 15 salon have the first opportunity to transfer their tickets for the new date. It would be wise to hop to it and exchange tickets ASAP.

Why? If, by Thursday, November 10, there are any available tickets for the new date, they’ll be available to the public.

Also, the Nasher Sculpture Center is working with Booker T. Washington High School for the Performing and Visual Arts to have Kristin participate in an afternoon salon for the students. According to the Nasher folks,

“When all seats are sold to the evening Salon a limited number of tickets will become available for the student-led Salon at Booker T. Washington High School. Tickets for this Salon are $25 for Members and $30 for Non-members. The public is encouraged to check the website starting on November 11.”

The Booker T. salon is great for a couple of reasons. The enthusiasm and energy of the students are contagious. Also, the featured speaker always seems to have fun talking with the kids.

BTW, the evening salon starts at 8, so why not have dinner at the Nasher Cafe by Wolfgang Puck at 6 p.m. But you’ve got to make reservations, so hop to it.

A Sale To Howl About This Saturday and Sunday

Sweet Cherry T

The cute pooch to the left is the MySweetCharity mascot. Her name is Sweet Cherry T.

Pretty darn cute. Looks like one of those designer breeds that cost as much as a couture blouse and has better pedigree that the British royals.


Cherry was found at the Dallas Animal Shelter when she was six months old.

Oh, but you’ve heard tales about “those pound dogs.” They have problems.

Wrong again! Gee, that’s not like you.

Despite being picked up on the streets of Dallas, Cherry was perfectly housebroken, elected Miss Congeniality her first day at MSC and has never had a sick day in her life.

There are lots of “Sweet Cherries” at the DAS just waiting for adoption and, quite honestly, the DAS would like to move them on to their forever homes. For this reason, the DAS is having a Howl-O-Ween special. This Saturday and Sunday all pet adoptions will be $30. No, you read that right. Not $300. . . $30.

And it gets better. Not only is this an amazing bargain, it includes vaccinations, spay/neuter, microchipping and more! 

Phoenix House Expansion Dedication Brings Together Supporters And Memories Of Paul Bass

As the sun was setting Wednesday, the season’s first cold front had dropped temperatures so a good pashmina was the perfect accessory for the Phoenix House of Texas Hill A. Feinberg Academy ribbon cutting and dedication of the Paul M. Bass Jr. Road to Recovery and Administration and Outpatient Facilities Building. No, people weren’t turning blue with a chill, but they did see a perfect opportunity to group together in the courtyard of the facility to take advantage of body heat.

Speaking of the facility, the finished product of brick and mortar was outstanding thanks to the funds provided by so many (The Crystal Charity Ball, Horace C. Cabe Foundation, Renee and Hill A. Feinberg, FirstSouthwest, Hillcrest Foundation, HobliPtzelle Foundation, Gene and Jerry Jones Family, The Lupe Murchison Foundation, Annette and Harold Simmons, T. Boone Pickens, PlainsCapital Corporation, Aileen and Jack Pratt Foundation, Betsy and Jim Sowell, Sturgis Educational and Charitable Trust and Lee Ann and Alan White).

As guests entered the walkway leading to the courtyard, the first thing they spotted was a stone plaque honoring the late Paul Bass, who had inspired so many.

Mitchell Rosenthal

Before taking their seats under a tent for the ribbon-cutting, the crowd compared notes. Phoenix House Founder Mitchell Rosenthal was chatting with Alan White and others about the weather. Upon leaving New York City that morning, he had heard the temperature to be 38 degrees, but now it was up to the 60’s. . . not so bad with the sun shining.

Lee Ann White

When a guest complimented Lee Ann White about the million-dollar-luncheon she chaired earlier this year featuring Jeb Bush and how it had spearheaded the Phoenix House expansion, she quickly demurred, “Oh, no! Crystal Charity got this started!”

And the CCB ladies including Debbie Oates were present but way in the background at the event.

Promptly the ceremony took place because people had to get home in time for the Rangers playing in the World Series. This subject is the driving force nowadays for most event agendas, don’t you know.

Phoenix House CEO/President Howard Meitiner welcome the group and thanked everyone for supporting this “new, improved and enlarged facility.” Because of the expansion, it will allow the group to offer an expanded range of residential and outpatient services.

Did you know that Phoenix House Hill A. Feinberg Academy is projected to work with 450 teens through its Intensive Residential treatment program and 250 will be served through its Outpatient Program?

Pauline Medrano, Hill Feinberg, Mariela, Maeve O'Neill and Howard Meitiner

One of those served through the Phoenix House was Mariela, who at the age of 13 was using cheese heroin. But that was four years ago. . . four sober years ago. Wednesday, she held the scissors for the official ribbon cutting with City Councilwoman Pauline Medrano, Hill, Phoenix House Deputy Regional Director Maeve O’Neill and Howard by her side.

Thanks to the support of so many, there will be many more like Mariela, who will cut through teen drug abuse.

Valet Parker Blows His Cool

Everyone is under pressure nowadays with the economy squeezing tempers as well as pocketbooks. Some are starting to break at the seams.

For instance? How about tonight? A marvelous seated-dinner that was very manageable (300 people) emptied out to a valet parking team that was less than prepared for the situation (understaffed, with mostly new recruits).

As guests got steamed under their white collars and cashmere pashminas after waiting up to 45 minutes for their vehicles, one gal confronted the head car wrangler, asking if her car had been stolen.

To this the valet, who was obviously at the neck-wringing point, said, “These are all rich people; they don’t need to steal a car.”

International Exotic Animal Sanctuary Provides A Refuge For Animals Like Those Killed In Ohio

People have been shocked at the exotic animal release and shootingsthat have taken place in Ohio the past two days. Despite the tragedy of captive wild animals being released and killed because of one man’s irresponsibility, it must be remembered that there are reputable refuges

International Exotic Animal Sanctuary's "Noel"

for such animals. One of them that’s in the North Texas area is International Exotic Animal Sanctuary. The residents include bobcats, cougars, jaguars, leopards, lions, tigers and others that do not belong in homes or nonprofessional hands. The animals are there as a result of abandonment, abuse and confiscation by authorities.

It’s hard to imagine what the staff at IEAS and other similar facilities must be thinking upon hearing of such a horrendous situation for humans and animals Tuesday night.

These  “last-hope-homes” for exotic animals need support. So, think about volunteering or providing financial support. . . or better yet, do both. And, if you have some time, why not drive on over to Boyd for a tour of the facility?

Photo credit: International Exotic Animal Sanctuary

James Farmer Harvests Quite A Crop When It Comes to Garden Living

James Farmer III

It’s hard to describe James Farmer III. Before you meet him, everyone warns you that he’s just plain “cute.” When pressed, they can’t put a finger on what makes the 29-year-old with the boyish grin from Kathleen, Georgia, so “cute.” It’s that “cute” thang that gets in the way when you do get to meet him. He’s just so adorable that you forget that he’s considered the South’s 21st century version of Martha Stewart. From landscaping and interior design to cooking and gardening, he does it all. And on the side he can whip together an intimate dinner party as well as major fundraisers and special events.

Caren Kline

What brought him to Dallas last Wednesday was a book signing for his “A Time to Plant” at Caren and Pete  Kline‘s 1938 Preston Hollow home. In addition to promoting the book, he was also plotting with the Crystal Charity Ball ladies about his supporting the December 3rd ball at the Hilton Anatole.

James Farmer III in Kline garden

Settling back in the Klines’ “Pine Room,” he looked like a college kid in his simple blue sports coat (“it’s vintage — belonged to my great-uncle”), a blue-and-white-striped shirt with a plaid tie  by Peter Millar and “wingtip boots” from Saks.

James Farmer floral arrangement

He’d had a busy day. Earlier in the day, he had headed to the Dallas wholesale flower market and picked up a few things. Combining his finds with flowers from the Klines’ garden, he created six little arrangements and five big ones for the evening’s gathering.

James Farmer floral arrangement

As a photographer snapped his picture, he joked, “I wanted to make sure my eyes were closed and my mouth was open.

“I’m 29, but I’m an old soul. When people asked me when I got into this, I say, ‘About 29 years ago.’ My mother tells me that as a child on her hip, I would lunge for the flowers. It’s my nature, and my family nurtured it.

“People always ask me three questions: Is James Farmer your real name? (Yes); Where is Kathleen; is it a real place? (Yes, south of Macon, Georgia. It’s really just a ZIP code); And, how do you dry hydrangeas? (I don’t; I let nature take its course.)”

He’s a firm believer in “garden living.” What’s that? The Southern Living contributor explained it’s where it all starts: cooking/entertaining/decorating.  It’s caught on “because we’ve been removed from the land for too long. We’ve finally just had enough. We’re at the point where we want to reconnect.”

But what about people in condos or highly urbanized areas? “Pot or plot — whatever you’ve got,” he answered with a twinkle in his eye.

James Farmer III floral arrangement

When asked what makes James Farmer III unique, he doesn’t hesitate: “I’m young, male and Southern. You turn on Food Network or HGTV, you see men on, but they’re older. A lot of the chefs if they’re southern are from New Orleans; I went to Auburn. Authenticity is truly what [makes me] unique. . .  my generation doesn’t know anything. We’re all starting out.”

Doug and Molly Barnes and James Farmer III

Regarding his upcoming appearance on the “Today Show” and two more books in the works, he denies any thoughts of his being a genius in business. Rather, “My strongest business sense is to recognize strength in others, and nurture others. It takes a village.”

Then someone knocked on the door and James was ushered to a house full of adoring fans. . . or soon-to-be new best friends.

Shoppers Might Want To Avoid NorthPark Center Tomorrow Morning

Having just driven past the north parking lot of NorthPark Center, it’s obvious the Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure operation is in full swing for tomorrow’s event.

So, be forewarned : Unless you’re a participant or a supporter, you might want to hold off the NP “experience” until noon-ish when everything isn’t quite so pinkish.

Just In: Larry “J.R.” Hagman Probable No Show For Cattle Baron’s Ball Due To Cancer Diagnosis

Larry Hagman (File photo)

TV Guide just reported that”Dallas” legend Larry “J.R.” Hagman has been diagnosed with cancer.

Ironically, Larry was to attend Saturday night’s Cattle Baron’s Ball, one of the country’s biggest fundraising events for the American Cancer Society. A well-placed-source tells MySweetCharity that due to the recent developments, Larry will not be at the CBB.

Now, let’s end this post with some good news:

  1. Larry’s doctors report that the cancer is “highly treatable” and he’s already starting treatments.
  2. Larry will indeed be part of the production starting next week on the new “Dallas” series.
  3. Other members of the “Dallas” cast will be at CBB.
  4. More reason to raise a heck of a lot of money Saturday night.

Just In: Dallas Film Society President/CEO Tanya Foster Is Resigning

Tanya Foster

It’s been learned that Dallas Film Society President/CEO Tanya Foster is resigning.

The official announcement will be made next week that the DFS is immediately undertaking a search for Tanya’s replacement. Hmm, qualifications — be brilliant, beautiful and beyond charming?

Before Tanya cleans out her desk, she’ll be part of that search team including Dallas Film Society Chairman of the Board Lynn McBee.

During her two-year tenure, Tanya supervised the DFS’s having Robert Duvall at Art of the Film in 2010, and served as executive director for a memorable Dallas International Film Festival hosting Dennis Quaid, Jerry Jeff Walker, Peter Fonda, Ann-Margret and other dazzling stars this past spring.

Oh, yes. Of course, you want to know why she’s resigning. How about one husband and four kiddos? If you’ve ever raised munchkins, you know that it’s imperative to be available at their beck and call once they hit the teenage years. Looks like Ms. Tanya has her priorities nicely in place.


Just In: Cattle Baron’s Ball To Include J.R. and Members Of “Dallas” Cast

Larry Hagman (File photo)

MySweetCharity has just learned that joining the 3,000 near-and-dear barons and baronesses Saturday at Southfork for the Cattle Baron’s Ball will be members of the new “Dallas” cast including:

  • Larry Hagman (J.R., as if you didn’t know)
  • Brenda Strong (Bobby Ewing’s wife and the voice of Bree on “Desperate Housewives”)
  • Jordanna Brewster (John Ross’s girl and star of “Fast and Furious”)
  • Julie Gonazalo (Christopher Ewing’s fiancée) and
  • John Henderson (John Ross).

Also, the weather is supposed to be perfect for a night of spending, dancing and enjoying the very good life.

Les Femmes Du Monde’s Woman Of The Year Must Have Been Memorable

Was unable to attend the Les Femmes du Monde‘s 2011 Woman of the Year‘s seated dinner honoring Tincy Miller at Brook Hollow Golf Club. But evidently it was quite an event, with guests speed-texting updates throughout the dinner about the presentation of a surfboard instead of a plaque to Tincy, one guest taking a nasty fall, and the near-omission of Caroline Rose Hunt in the readout of past honorees.

Highlight of the evening was Tincy’s speech. It garnered an A+, but you’d expect that from her.

Cattle Baron’s Will Have The Texas Rangers Televised Saturday At The AT&T Sports Bar Lounge With A Stoli Bar

Saturday night in October has always been is chock full of college football. For the past couple of years, the Dallas sports menu has had the addition of the Texas Rangers race for the World Series.

With this sports schedule in mind, and knowing full well that many of the 3,000 Cattle Baron’s guests love sports almost as much as their boots, the CBB committee has arranged to have the AT&T Sports Bar Lounge with mega screens and lounge chairs all around. Smack dab in the middle of the lounge will be the Stoli Bar.

So just in case, the Rangers do have to duke it out Saturday, CBB guests will be able to hunker down with Eddie Deen cuisine, big screen and a Stoli.