JUST IN: Dallas Cowboys Quarterback Dak Prescott To Be Keynote Speaker At After-School All-Stars’ 2nd Annual Rising Stars Luncheon

Dak Prescott (AP Photo)*

With all the rumbling about Dallas Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo‘s probably being released, there’s also news about the “presumed” (wink, wink)  starting quarterback Dak Prescott off the field. 

The too-good-to-be-true former rookie, who rallied the team and North Texas to Super Bowl dreams, is going to be the keynote speaker for the 2nd  Annual After-School All-Stars Rising Stars Luncheon on Wednesday, May 17.

Yup! Luncheon Chair Gina Betts knows all the ingredients for a sell-out event and she’s done it once again. In addition to have bowtie-wearing Dak at the podium, she’s arranged for Nancy C. and Richard R. Rogers to be the presenting sponsor.

The question is, “How quick will the luncheon at the Dallas Country Club sell out to benefit After-School All-Stars North Texas?”

BTW, this is one of those splurge events meaning splurging on a VIP-type ticket will have perks like a VIP reception before the luncheon. Tickets and sponsorships are available now!

* Photo courtesy of After-School All-Stars North Texas

Children’s Donor Reception Was Prepared For A Cowboys-Packers Showdown With A Flatscreen In The Dallas Country Club Ballroom

Sundays are usually sorta ho-hum. There are church services and brunches, but otherwise it’s rather calm. And on Sunday, January 15, it should have been especially so, since it was the Martin Luther King Jr. three-day weekend.

That’s why “the Christophers” (Children’s Health President/CEO Chris Durovich and Children’s Medical Center Foundation President Brent Christopher) figured it would be ideal for the 2nd Annual Thank You Donors reception at the Dallas Country Club.

What wasn’t predicted was Cowboys wunderkind rookies Dak Prescott and Zeke Elliott. Thanks to the Cowboys making it to the NFL playoff and the game being played at AT&T Stadium starting at 4 p.m., the snoozy Sunday was no longer so sleepy.

Then there was the Liener Temerlin’s memorial service at Temple Emanu-El’s Stern Chapel at 3 p.m.

Chris and Christina Durovich

This Sunday was truly going into uber drive.

But then, of course, Mother Nature had to add her two cents with rain.

Luckily, Chris and Brent were prepared for the situation. As Brent chatted in the lobby area, Chris and Christina Durovich officially welcomed guests and let them know that a TV was broadcasting the Cowboys-Packers game at the back of the ballroom just past all the tables filled with goodies.

Randy Muck, Carol Bieler and Brent Christopher

When one guest asked Brent, Carol Bieler and Randy Muck about the Cowboys game, Randy quickly corrected the guest saying it was a “Packers game.” Bow-tied Brent smiled, “Randy’s a Packer’s fan.”

Among the early arrivals were new Communities Foundation of Texas President/CEO David Scullin with his wife Susan Scullin, Fran and Bill Carter and Caroline Rose Hunt with Bob Brackbill. Katy and Ken Menges arrived reporting the latest score as they checked in. Katy will be having hip surgery and is glad to have it over with. Annette Leslie sans 25 pounds reported that the Carson Leslie Foundation had ramped up with greater structure.

David and Susan Scullin and Fran and Bill Carter

Katy and Ken Menges

Bob Brackhill and Caroline Rose Hunt

Magda and Dr. Halim Hennes told former Children’s Medical Center Foundation President Kern Wildenthal that the Children’s ER was on its way to being open. 

Kern Wildenthal and Magda and Halim Hennes

Kern had been an honorary pallbearer at Liener’s services, which were simply flawless with three generations of Temerlins recalling “Papa.” Despite the eloquence of daughter Lisa Temerlin Gottesman and grandson Blake Gottesman, it was great-granddaughter Avery Johl’s telling the story of “The Invisible String” with Rabbi David Stern that was the true memory maker.

In attendance at the service were Gail and Gerald Turner, Marnie Wildenthal, Martha Tiller (sans husband David Tiller, who was preparing for back surgery), Nancy Dedman, Nancy Halbreich, Barbara and Stan Levenson, Melina McKinnon and Michael Cain and Wick Allison.

But back to the Children’s reception. As the party closed down with a hair-pulling end to the Cowboys-Packers game, Ma Nature took over the spotlight with tornado warnings and severe thunderstorms. While disappointed Cowboy fans found themselves holed up at AT&T stadium, the Children’s guests were safe at home.

2016 Art Ball Auction Item #3: VIP Front Row Experience

In North Texas, not all art is confined to the AT&T Performing Arts District. There is a large number of folks who swear that Dallasites consider sports to be an art form. So, naturally 2016 Art Ball Live Auction Chair Trisha Wilson whipped up a live auction package that is strictly top-drawer sports for this Saturday’s Dallas Museum of Art fundraiser.

VIP Front Row Experience (Value: Priceless)

_MG_5714 Gene and Jerry Jones File photoEven if you don’t like sports, you’ll love making your friends envious as they see you where they only dream of being. For the Dallas Cowboys, the winner of this package will be joined by three guests in Gene and Jerry Jones’ personal box. And you just know what that means. Loads of top-notch food and beverages, pre-games festivities and appears by the Cowboys cheerleaders. And, of course, there will be exclusive access to the field, so you can wave at all of you buds in the stands.

For a Texas Rangers game, there will be box seats for 12. And instead of just taking home a program and selfies, the winner will have a Rangers shortstop Jurickson Profar autographed jersey and baseballs autographed by retired Rangers battling champ Michael Young, Rangers’ Manager Jeff Banister and retired Rangers catcher Ivan “Pudge” Rodriguez.

As for the Dallas Mavs, no box seats here. No, siree. There will be four courtside seats and, of course, a lot of folks up in the stands wondering, “How come?”

The only problem with this package is that it will totally spoil you for future games. But why not spoil yourself or your favorite sports aficionado?

Compliments of Gene and Jerry Jones (Dallas Cowboys), Julie and Jim Turner (Dallas Mavericks) and Taunee Taylor (Texas Rangers)

* Graphics provided by the Dallas Museum of Art

Kent Cooked Up Fixin’s, Dunia Served Up Ice Cream And Jan Took On A Mechanical Bull At The Taste Of The NFL

The Cowboys draft was still making headlines when the Taste of the NFL: The Ultimate Cowboys Tailgate Party was setting into its new home-sweet-home at AT&T Cowboy Stadium on Sunday, May 3. Benefiting North Texas Food Bank, more than 800 enjoyed a food fest coordinated by Kent Rathbun and rubbed elbows with Cowboy notables Jason Garrett, Chad Henning, Preston Pearson, Charles Haley and Troy Aikman and cheerleaders.

Kent Rathbun

Kent Rathbun

Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders

Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders



Preston Pearson

Preston Pearson

This was Kent’s 11th year and he was very pleased to be at the stadium this year — “It’s where we should have been all the time.” He went on to remind folks that “when we raise $1, it’s basically three meals (for those in need).”

Despite his catering operation having handled six events the day before and his preparing for the opening of his new restaurant — Hickory Kitchen in Plano — and another Jasper’s in Richard this fall, he was cooking up waffle cut fries with braised short ribs and blue cheese.

Dunia Borgia

Dunia Borgia

Tom Landry statue

Tom Landry statue

Before the masses were allowed entry, the VIP types partied somewhere within the building while in the Miller Lite West Plaza Kent and 20+ chefs set up stations with the wind giving them a challenge. But not Dunia Borgia. She should have been elected Miss Congeniality as she wandered the grounds offering Micrema Bespoke Frozen Dessert. The handmade pistachio ice cream was a huge hit. Dallas Cowboys PR Scott Agulnek said, “I don’t eat desserts and sweets, but the pistachio is the best! I’ve had two spoonfuls already!” Dunia whispered that the secret was using nitrogen to freeze it.

Cowboys on Tour

Cowboys on Tour

Over to the side of the plaza was the Big “Cowboys on Tour” truck chock full of Cowboys great days memorabilia — Super Bowl rings and trophies, TV screens showing 2014 season highlights, helmets, a Tom Landry statue and so much more. Hall of Fame Driver Charles Blotas proudly detailed the massive mobile museum. It’s pulled by a big blue-and-white Freightliner cab boasting a star. Including the trailer and cab the whole thing measures 83 feet.

As the general admission types were allowed in from one side of the silent auction area, the VIP’s emerged from their partying.

Charles Haley

Charles Haley

Like other former Cowboys, linebacker and defensive end Charles Haley said, “I come every year. I do whatever I can. We need to fight hunger. It needs to be on more people’s minds. This year is the best because it’s at Cowboys stadium. A lot of players are here. It ties everything together; didn’t have the same feel before. I’ve been coming every year. If everyone in the country gave just $1 or $5, it would wipe out hunger. I’m just one man… if we did more as a nation, we could knock it out!…[I got into philanthropy] in 1986, my rookie year with the 49ers, when Ronnie Lott made me hand out shoes. I saw people crying. It taught me so much. I’m always in the community, always trying to make a difference. I want to set an example. I do whatever it takes. I raise money of ‘Istation,’ (an animated learning curriculum).

Jan Pruitt

Jan Pruitt

Jan Pruitt

Jan Pruitt

As the sunset in the west, NTFB CEO Jan Pruitt slo-moed the bucking bull. She’d never done it before but said, “Anything for a good cause! It’s all about feeding kids in our community. The goal is to make people aware that there are children in our community tonight that are hungry. The Cowboys have opened the door to their home and said, ‘Not in Dallas, Texas!’ If we’re gonna talk about affordable health care, we’ve gotta talk about feeding the kids. Richard a bull to raise money for hunger is easy compared to the mother who has to tell her child there’s not enough food to eat.” The good news is that Jan stayed on board the bull. Her only regret was that her orange nail polish didn’t match her seaside blue nail polish. Oh, the woes of a bull riding fashionista!

Gina Miller

Gina Miller

 Eliot Sorel

Eliot Sorel

Taryn Timmons and Jean Wilde

Taryn Timmons and Jean Wilde

Speaking of fashion, emcee Gina Miller’s long legs were rooted in her Dallas Cowboys boots that her mom had bought at auction in 1990. She was joined on stage with KTVT’s Doug Dunbar were on stage with Rowdy and Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders…. George Washington University Medical Center Dr. Eliot Sorel in bowtie was in town for the National Council on Youth Sports Safety of which he was co-chairing… Taryn Timmons and Jenn Wilde were looking for Taryn’s sister Danya Anderson, who is a big supporter of the event because “She has a heart for the Food Bank!”… Near the mechanical bull were Ricardo Marin, Danny Foreman, Frances Benavides, Genie Pattison and Josh Sanchez playing Jenga. They got it to 23 blocks high before it tumbled down. Josh, recalled playing the block building game back in Telluride where they played Jenga at a bar, “There.”… Former Dallas Cowboys/Air Forces Academy grad Chad Henning was talking with fellow Air Force grad Col. Joseph Sanders, who heads up the Air Force Academy’s Center for Character and Leadership Development…Troy Aikman and gal-pal Tracy Ripsin posed for photos with Rachel Garay and Pono Tuinei, the widow for Dallas Cowboys Mark Tuinei.

Chad Henning, Jason Garrett and Joseph Sanders

Chad Henning, Jason Garrett and Joseph Sanders

Tracy Ripsin, Troy Aikman, Rachel Garay and Pono Tuinei

Tracy Ripsin, Troy Aikman, Rachel Garay and Pono Tuinei

Louisiana band Rusty Brothers fessed up that for the evening that, “We may or may not be Saints fans, but tonight we’re Cowboys fans!”

And on this night foodies were feeding themselves so that the North Texas Food Bank could feed children in the days to come.

More photos of former Dallas Cowboys and fundraising foodies can be found at MySweetCharity Photo Gallery.

Dallas Cowboy Justin Durant Hosted A Toy-Gathering Party For Boys And Girls Clubs Of Greater Dallas-Oak Cliff Unit

Santa wasn’t the only one in the toy business for good girls and boys. Heck, no! Here’s a report from the field about one that took place on Monday, December 15:

“Dallas Cowboys Linebacker and Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference Hall of Fame inductee Justin Durant hosted a private reception and toy drive at Olivella’s Neo Pizza Napoletana in Victory Park to benefit  Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Dallas-Oak Cliff Unit. The mood was decidedly merry and bright when 65 people donated more than 100 toys to Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Dallas-Oak Cliff Unit. Durant’s friend and two-time Super Bowl Champion Bethel Johnson joined the festivities.

Regina Fonts, Ci'Andria Jefferson, Justin Durant and Ashle Green*

Regina Fonts, Ci’Andria Jefferson, Justin Durant and Ashle Green*

“Justin’s fondness for Boys and Girls Clubs dates back to his own youth when he was enrolled in his hometown Boys and Girls Club. ‘I grew up in the Boys and Girls Club in Florence, S.C., so I felt the need to give back,” Durant said. ‘I wanted to partner with chapters here in Dallas to try to give back and do something with the community out here. I should have been doing it before. Now I’m trying to make up for lost time.’

Bethel Johnson and Dessie Brown*

Bethel Johnson and Dessie Brown*

“Nearly 70 people attended, including Dallas Cowboy Justin Durant, former New England Patriot Bethel Johnson, Josh from 102.1 The Morning Edge, Jasmine Sadry from 102.1 The Edge iHeart Media, Fort Worth Star-Telegram Cowboys reporter Clarence Hill Jr. and, of course, representatives from Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Dallas.

“’On behalf of over 6,000 youth served by Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Dallas, we are extremely grateful for the generous support provided by Justin Durant’s Toys for Tots at Olivella’s Neo Pizza Napoletana and now for Charity Giveback benefitting our Oak Cliff Club,’ said Charles English, President and CEO of Boys and Girls Clubs of Greater Dallas. ‘This holiday season will be especially bright and happy for the many families that have entrusted their children to us. Justin’s generous gift ensures that we can continue to provide critical and results-based programs. We are sincerely grateful.’

Presenting sponsors included Macallan, Snow Leopard Vodka and Brugal Rum (Edrington America), Olivella’s Neo Pizza NapoletanaThe Landings St Lucia with additional support provided by Robert Half International, D4SM, Luv Your Events, Nike, W Hotel, Yeroc Eyewear, Schuyler 4, Haupt Shirts, Phil’s New Money Friends, Jenny Meets Penny, Megan Averbuch, Fashion Stylist of Belles and Rebelles, Jen Abrams Style, Unity Vintage Jean Co. and Marlyn Schiff.”

* Photo credit: Claudia Coker

Sorta Clarification: Dallas Symphony Orchestra Is Going To Serve Up A Partial-Kinda-Performance For Turkey Day

Remember yesterday when MySweetCharity announced proudly that Dallas’s own Dallas Symphony Orchestra would be performing the Star Spangled Banner at Cowboys Stadium on Thanksgiving?

It conjured up tears of pride. But there was a switch play!

Well, now the truth can be revealed. Instead of silk, it’s gonna by polyester. Instead of the sun, it’s gonna be a 4th of July sparkler. It’s gonna be 45 members of the DSO playing in sync according to Scott “Mr. Classical” Cantrell.

According to Mr. Classical Cantrell:

“We don’t like to advertise that fact,” said Cowboys’ executive producer Matt Coy. “But with 45 members of the orchestra it’s going to be difficult to do it live.”

DSO PR guy Chris Shull said, “It has to do with broadcast quality, and making sure that our sound is as HD and pristine as we can get.”

OMG! What next? Jaap van Zweden conducting a karaoke at a Humperdinks? The art on the Cowboys Stadium is really paint on velvet backgrounds?

Heck, let’s get over this one. The rest of the DSO deserves to spend turkey day with their families. Just mark this one down as fake pass.

Cowboys Will Have Dallas Symphony Orchestra Serving Up Star Spangled Banner For Thanksgiving

Gene Jones and Charlotte Anderson (File photo)

First, the Jones gals displayed works of art at Cowboys Stadium. Then the Dallas Opera simulcasted at Jones World.

Now word comes “unofficially” that the Dallas Symphony Orchestra is going to be playing up a storm on Thursday, November 22, when the Cowboys face the Washington Redskins.

Okay, so maybe not a storm, but they will perform the Star Spangled Banner before the game starts.

Regardless of the outcome, it’s doubtful any other NFL game will have such a mega-performance of the national anthem.

Just wondering if the Dallas Morning News’s Scott Cantrell will be hanging with the sports reporters in the media box doing a review of the performance.

Next thang you know, the Texas Ballet will sub in for the Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders. Wouldn’t that be “tu-tu” much?

Emmitt Smith Celebrity Invitational Toasts Supporters And Overloads Valet Parking

If a party’s success is judged by the valet parker back up, then the celebration for the 2012 Emmitt Smith Celebrity Invitation sponsors and host committee at Dee Lincoln’s Restaurant and Bubble Bar was one of history’s greatest success stories. Two Rolls Royces were parked out front and glam-types took their time greeting each other as they entered the bar. One guest, who waited 10 minutes for his turn to have his car valeted, was relieved when the worn-out parker approached his car. As he prepared to turn over the vehicle to the valet, the parker said, “Sorry, I’m overloaded. You can park yourself. It’s only $3.”

John Dinardo, Dee Lincoln, Pat and Emmitt Smith

But what else can you expect when Honorary Chairs Anita and David Feherty and Event Chairs Dee Lincoln and John Dinardo issue the invitations?

Charles Haley and Ed "Too Tall" Jones

For those who did make it inside, they learned that the May 11 and 12 activities at The Westin Stonebriar will commemorate the first championship win in 1992 by the Dallas Cowboys of the ’90s.

“We really haven’t been brought back together as a group since we won the title,” said Emmitt Smith. “It’s going to be an incredible evening, seeing everyone together again. We were able to accomplish a lot and the memories we created will last a lifetime.”

Jim and Sue Gragg

Friday night will kick off the weekend with a a $1,000-per-plate dinner with “Hollywood A-listers” and legendary athletes of others sports. Dallas Cowboys voice Brad Sham will host a roundtable discussion with members of the 1992 team.

Saturday morning there will be a round of golf at TPC Craig Ranch including celebrities.

“The overall weekend has helped us raise a combined $600,000 in its first two years,” said Pat Smith, president of Pat & Emmitt Smith Charities. “We’re hoping this year that total will easily surpass the $1 million mark. These funds will be used to further the mission of Pat & Emmitt Smith Charities, which has always been about providing enrichment opportunities to under-served youth.”

Photo credit: Dana Driensky




Silent Auctions Are Better Than Black Friday

People often wonder if the silent auctions are really worth all the work and investment. Here’s one that certainly was.

Dee (pictured) and Gary Marchand attended the recent Zoo-To-Do and perused the items in the silent auction. When the young couple compared notes, they decided to bid on only something that had no bids. There was one that caught their eye — A Thanksgiving Tradition. Was it a turkey with stuffing? An entry to the Turkey Trot?

Nope. It was six tickets to the annual Cowboys game on Thanksgiving. Hey, not bad. But wait! It got better. The seats were not only on the 50-yard line, they were in a suite with all the perks plus parking tickets. The former New Orleans Marchands couldn’t pass it up since the Cowboys were playing the Saints.

After much soul searching, they decided to make a bid in the upper three-figure range. Yes, the Marchands paid more than they would have for tickets to a movie at NorthPark, but they

  • got what many would consider a bargain especially since the Cowboys are now on a winning streak
  • will make their first visit to Cowboys Stadium in grand style and
  • support the Dallas Zoo.

So, are silent auctions still worth all the trouble? Well, the Marchands sure think so.


The Salvation Army’s Soul-Saving Campaign Raised Funds With Sole-Saving Blake Mycoskie

The annual Salvation Army Luncheon is an inspiration in itself. With a herd of both males and females showing their support for the 130-plus year old organization, the luncheon is the warm-up kick-off for the yearly red kettle drive. As guests arrived at the luncheon in the Hilton Anatole, they were greeted throughout the lobby by The Salvation Army (TSA) associates ringing bells.

For some reason, there seemed to be a little more pep in the step as people entered the ballroom. Perhaps it was the Cowboys’ recent wins, the very successful Bush Center groundbreaking or the slight turn in the economy. Regardless, the crowd of 1,500 was bright eyed and bushy tailed.

Charlotte Anderson was wearing many hats like —

  • First Daughter of Dallas Cowboys owner Jerry Jones
  • Exec VP Brand Management for the Cowboys
  • President of Charities for the Cowboys
  • National Advisory Board Chairperson for TSA.

No wonder the gal had a front row table!  She also had by her side Mom Gene Jones at the next table with gal pals Diana Strauss and Lee Ann White, but she also was joined by Brill Garrett (pictured right with Charlotte Anderson), Cowboys Coach Jason Garrett’s better half.

No wonder Keith Urban will officially kick off the Red Kettle campaign performing halftime at the Cowboys’ Thanksgiving game.

Across the ballroom was Gail Turner, who feared  she was going to “have to put rocks in (husband/SMU president) Gerald‘s shoes” to bring him back to earth after the Bush Center groundbreaking two days before.

Speaking of which, Nancy Halbreich was giddy about the groundbreaking, too. Not just the event. She was just sitting among the first 10 rows with Nancy Dedman when Mitt Romney sat down next to her. When asked how the niece of former Democratic chairman Robert Strauss felt to be one of the only Democrats at the largely Republican gathering of 2,300, she diplomatically answered with a smile, “I consider myself to be an Independent.”

A few tables over, Bobby Lyle was being hugged and greeted like Santa. Luncheon Chair Joyce Fox (pictured right with Bobby Lyle) was one of the first to do the honors. Seems that Bobby was in charge of underwriting for the event and he has a reputation for making people want to give.

But more about that later.

Following the lunch’s being served, a moving video was presented telling “Edith’s Story” with the capper being the presentation of Edith to a standing ovation. Next Major Ward Matthews with the assistance of his wife Captain Michele told the group that one of the highest honors that TSA bestowed on individuals was The Others Award. It was created to recognize those outside TSA who have gone “above and beyond” to help the organization. They told how Jan Pickens, Ray Nixon (pictured) and Jim Francis had made such an impact through their efforts to raise awareness and finances for TSA that they were receiving The Others Award.

Then Gerald revealed that Bobby Lyle had given him an envelope with the amount of money raised from the luncheon. After opening the envelope, Gerald reported a whopping $3,313,154 was the magic number. But not satisfied, he suggested that everyone with a cell phone text a certain number which would result in their donating at least $10.

Immediately folks like Rena Pederson, Ann Carruth and Harriet Miers started texting. A few others raised an eyebrow. Looking a little uncomfortable, one guest whispered, “They just said that over $3 million was raised by us. Now, they’re asking for more?”

If you do your arithmetic and everyone in the room had texted $10, that would have increased the total by $15,000.

Gerald, the man who knows how to make things happen, also told the crowd that they could make a donation the old fashioned way by putting money in the little red kettles on each of the tables or buying the centerpieces.

Those Salvation Army soldiers really know how to market!

Speaking of marketing, the man of the hour and guest speaker Blake Mycoskie (pictured) took to the stage. The former SMU tennis player/founder of TOMS knew how to make an impression both visually and verbally. Doffing his brown sports jacket, the tousled brunette with the scruffy beard in the red plaid shirt with leather and beaded bracelets looked more like a beneficiary of TSA than the head of an international shoe mega-wonder. Ah, but he was just setting the well-dressed audience up.

While other speakers had used teleprompters, Blake talked non-stop for 25 minutes about his life. Sounds like half  a therapy session, huh? Not Blake’s life. Having done everything from losing  “The Amazing Race” by four minutes, to starting an online driver education company to playing polo and sipping fine wine in Argentina, Blake sounded like the ultimate subject of a  Robin Leach segment. Then while in Argentina, he joined some English-speaking gals in delivering shoes to children in a poor village a couple of hours outside town. He was so moved by the experience that he decided to start a company that gave one pair of shoes to a child in need for every pair purchased.

Blake’s tales of how he created the start-up company and in no time was overwhelmed with orders and encounters with the likes of Anna Wintour kept the audience riveted.  That first summer, 10,000 pairs were sold from his 1,000-square-foot apartment. This year TOMS gave awayits one millionth pair of shoes.

“Every single person in this room can have a tremendous impact  on the lives of people locally in this community and all over the world,” Blake said. “And your support for The Salvation Army is not just about  breaking a record or fund raising goals, which is awesome. It has to continue day after day after day. The more you incorporate giving into your life, the more you will receive. When you leave today, think what else you can do to help someone in need.”

By the time Blake had completed his talk, not a soul had left the ballroom and all gave him a standing ovation. It’s suspected that many were wearing TOMS by dinner time.

Dallas is A.W.A.R.E. and Dandy Today

Yes, the implosion of Texas Stadium was a real gang buster bringing out many Dallas Cowboys notables from the past. But there was a Dallas Cowboys era before Texas Stadium, Jerry Jones or even Roger Staubach arrived on the scene. It was the days when Bubbles Cash introduced Dallas to the mini-skirt; when kids thought everybody went to the the Cotton Bowl to watch football after they went to church; and when Dallasites watched the Boys play in the torturous “Ice Bowl.”

Those were the “Dandy Don Days” thanks to a fella from Mount Vernon named Don Meredith, who was #17 for the Dallas Cowboys. He was one of Dallas’ first sports personalities with his killer smile, country boy personality and razzle-dazzle plays both on and other the field. After he left professional football, he went on to become part of the legendary “Monday Night’s Football” trio with the late Howard Cosell and Frank Gifford.

Last night the legends of that era (Bob Lilly, Lee Roy Jordan, Walt Garrison, Pierce Allman, Billy Bob Harris, Kay Hammond, and so many others) gathered at Marianne and Roger Staubach‘s new digs in Preston Hollow on the eve of today’s A.W.A.R.E. luncheon at the Fairmont honoring Dandy Don, who just turned 72 on April 10. Not only was the place jammed with people, but the stories of the past were remarkable.

It you haven’t got tickets to today’s luncheon, it’s doubtful if even the finest groveling will work.