18th Annual Mission Ole Guests Got All Painted Up To Raise Funds For Trinity River Mission At Chicken Scratch And The Foundry

That first wave of winter chill really hit North Texas on Saturday, October 28. But thousands still rallied for area walks/runs in the morning. By evening the brisk temperatures had nonprofits pulling portable heaters out of storage and guests releasing their furs, cashmeres and leathers from closets.

The Trinity River Mission’s 18th Annual Mission Ole held forth in jeans, boots, cowboy hats and day of the dead painted faces at Chicken Scratch.

Margaret Spelling

Ann Kellogg Schooler and Matt Schooler

Lisa Cooley, Cindy Turner, Gail Fischer and John Corder

Earlier in the day, Mission Ole C0Chairs Ann Kellogg Schooler and Margaret Spelling and Advisor Extraordinaire Cindy Turner had a tent installed over the outdoor picnic tables and stage just in case the rain continued. There was no need. The rain had stopped and the reception took place in the open area around the fire pit and near the portable heaters. For those in need of greater heat, there was the shed with the silent auction items and the never-ending buffet.

Ciara Cooley and Katekyn Fletcher

Clay Cooley and Aaron McWhorter

Hillary Turner and Chris Calandro

Tanya McDonald and Paige McDaniel

As guests like Honorary Co-Chairs Lisa and Clay Cooley, Ciara Cooley with Chi O sister Katekyn Fletcher, Tanya McDonald, Paige McDaniel, Carole and Scott Murray, Hilary Turner, Chris Calandro and Luanne McWhorter arrived, mariachis and painted faced models proved the perfect selfie backdrops.

Mission Ole models

Yatzil Rubin and Thomas Surgent

Web Pierce

Lesley Lanahan

Lauren Thedfor

Face artist at work

While some guests like Yatzil Rubin, Thomas Surgent, Lauren Thedford and Webb Pierce arrived with faces ready made, others like Lesley and Michael Lanahan and Matt Schooler got in line to have customized painted faces.

Charles Haley

Honorary Chair Gail Fischer arrived late in the night. Husband Cliff Fischer was in India on business. As for Gail, she had a couple of reason for the delayed arrival. First the electricity in the family digs had gone out. Just as Gail had set up lit candles to see her way around, the electricity came back on. Then she took a wrong turn on her way to Chicken Scratch resulting in her heading to Fort Worth.

An hour into the event Gail arrived and immediately set about locating longtime Fischer bud Charles Haley. Someone told her that he had arrived early and left. But, no. Gail spotted the tall former Dallas Cowboy surrounded by fans and friends at the far end of the shed. She also laughed that another guests was also sporting the same black shirt with day-of-the-dead accents that her brother John Corder was wearing.

Other points of interests included Sunie Solomon reporting that monies were still being counted for the week-before Cattle Baron’s Ball; Greg Nieberding and Eddie Ortega telling how the night before they had hosted the past chairs and president of the Junior League of Dallas; rancher Aaron McWhorter preparing to head to Las Vegas with some of his bulls for the bull riding competition.

Steve and Sunie Solmon

Greg Nieberding and Eddie Ortega

For more looks are the faces in the crowd, check out MySweetCharity Photo Gallery.

MySweetCharity Photo Gallery Alert: 18th Annual Mission Ole

Lesley Lanahan, Matt Schooler and Ann Kellogg Schooler and Michael Lanahan

Despite the ghoulish faces and the chill in the air, the Trinity River Mission’s 18th Annual Mission Ole at Chicken Scratch and The Foundry was festive, fun and fundraising on Saturday, October 28. With the fire pit blazing and portable heater blowing, the cold factor was nihil. But at times it was hard to know just who was behind the painted faces. Why the face painters were busier than NorthPark Neiman’s cosmetic counter on a Saturday afternoon!

Web Pierce

Yatzil Rubin and Thomas Surgent

While the post is being finished, check out MySweetCharity Photo Gallery.

Mission Ole Patron Partied With Balloons Hovering Above, Mariachis On The Staircase And Green Margaritas At Gail Fischer’s Hacienda

Gail Fischer’s decision to redo her mansion is underway. On Thursday, October 19, guests may have wondered if the multi-colored, helium-filled balloons floating in the living room were part of the new look.

Gail Fischer’s balloon-filled ceiling

Green margarita

Nope. Gail just thought it would be a festive touch for Trinity River Mission‘s Mission Ole patron party. Looking at the ceiling filled with ballrooms, Gail reported that the whimsical look would last for a week as one by one, the balloons would fall to the pull of gravity. On the other hand, the mariachis performing along the winding staircase were just there for the party.

Gail Fischer, Clay and Lisa Cooley and Dolores Sosa Green

Spotted around the mansion were Honorary Co-Chair Clay Cooley sipping a green margarita complete with night of the dead napkin on the eve of his birthday; Honorary Co-Chair Lisa Cooley just back from a girl’s trip to Graceland; Co-Chair Margaret Spelling sporting a new short haircut; Co-Chairs Ann Kellogg Schooler announcing that she would be donning a hat at the Saturday, October 28th party at Chicken Scratch benefiting Trinity River Mission; and Cindy Turner opting for turquoise over diamonds.

Ann Schooler, Cindy Turner and Margaret Spelling

Others in the crowd included Honor Franklin and Bobby Mitchell, Heather Randall and Trinity River Mission Executive Director Dolores Sosa Green.

MySweetCharity Opportunity: Mission Ole

According to 18th Annual Mission Ole Co-Chairs Ann Kellogg Schooler and Margaret Spellings,

Ann Schooler (File photo)

Margaret Spellings (File photo)

Trinity River Mission (TRM) provides educational and social opportunities that inspire K-12 students and their families to dream, believe, and achieve.   It our hope that you will join us in raising much needed funds by attending the annual Mission Ole event on Saturday, October 28, 2017 at Chicken Scratch and The Foundry. The evening will be a fun-filled Dia de los Muertos in West Dallas.  Festivities include cocktails, dinner, silent and live auctions and dancing.   We are pleased to have generous donors Lisa and Clay Cooley serving as honorary co-chairs of the event.

Mission Ole 2016 (file photo)

Trinity River Mission is a volunteer-based community learning center serving the intergenerational education needs of children, youth, and families in West Dallas. TRM began in the early 1960s by a devoted group of volunteers to help in the relocation of Native Americans from Arizona, New Mexico, and Oklahoma. Various church and civic groups later joined in to provide, food, clothing, transportation, and educational assistance.

Trinity River Mission*

Since 1988, TRM’s focus has been to promote literacy, augment academic skills, and develop educational success among children, youth, and families, with the understanding that language proficiency and educational achievement opens doors to satisfying jobs and productive futures. TRM services the needs of all children without regard to race or ethnicity. At present, however, TRM’s program participants are overwhelmingly Hispanic because of the agency’s location in West Dallas.

Please visit www.trinityrivermission.org to join in the festivities for a great cause.

Mission Ole Letter Signing Wasn’t At Your Same Old Dinner Table

Ann Schooler

When volunteers are called together to sign letters with information about upcoming fundraisers, they usually find themselves gathered around a dining room in a home located along a tree-lined street. But when residential tastemaker extraordinaire Ann Kellogg Schooler is involved, one can expect a pretty darn remarkable table and setting. And, boy, did she prove just that point for the 18th Mission Ole letter signing.

It seems that she decided to do some “redecorating” at her 35,000-square-foot warehouse in the Design District. That’s where she had stashed incredible pieces of furnishings and art from her trips to Europe and around the world for her clients. But, it was more than just prettying up the place. She had transformed the storehouse into Wolf Hall Antique Collective, a 10,000-square-foot showroom of drool-able treasures available for the world to eyeball and purchase. For an added touch, she had London antiques dealer Timothy Langston and Austin-based botanist Lauren Lachance set up shop.

As Ann told PaperCity‘s Rebecca Sherman, “I love things that come with ghosts of the past.”

Cindy Turner

Margaret Spellings

So, it was only natural that Ann had her Mission Ole Co-Chair Margaret Spellings along with former Chair/Advisor Cindy Turner, Auction Chair Heather Randall and Trinity River Mission’s Michelle Mora-Lopez  over to Wolf Hall to put pens to paper for the Saturday, October 28th fundraiser for Trinity River Mission.

Heather Randall and Michelle Mora-Lopez

Mission Ole 2016 (file photo)

Due to the overwhelming success of last year’s event, they’re crossing the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge to West Dallas’ Chicken Scratch and The Foundry with its outdoor fire pits and signature margaritas and cocktails. Plans call for sparkling lights, a live band, mariachis, ballet folklorico dancer and faces that have to be seen to be believed!

This is strictly an event requiring absolutely no ties and stilettos. Just make sure that you get your place reserved and your GPS set, because it’s a fun night that definitely proves West Dallas is alive and well and Trinity River Mission is one to support even if your letter hasn’t arrived yet. Tickets are available now!

Funds raised from the event will support Trinity River Mission’s programs “to promote literacy, encourage academic success and develop effective life skills among disadvantaged youth in West Dallas, in the belief that education connects us to life’s possibilities.”

2016 Mission Olé Dazzled Chicken Scratch And The Foundry With Over-The-Top Festivities And Funding For Trinity River Mission

The only problem for 17th Annual Mission Olé guests on Thursday, October 27, was the arrival. As the newcomers’ luxury vehicles tried to locate the Trinity River Mission fundraiser at Chicken Scratch and The Foundry, some took a premature left turn and found themselves in an apartment parking lot.

Once recovering from the wrong-way turn, they were faced with vehicles with flashing lights. No, it wasn’t a police raid, it was a trio of road construction crews.

Day of the Dead human statues

Day of the Dead human statues

Once arriving, it was dazzling for both first timers and old timers as they were greeted by mariachis singing their hearts out. With multi-colored serapes wrapped around the chairs, the colorful tableclothes, arrangements of paper flowers and little yellow lanterns were the perfect setting. Chicken Scratch simply dazzled. Day of the Dead human statues were frozen in place. Face painters found themselves creating masterpieces non-stop. A fire pit glowed despite the 80-degree temperatures. An entire wall of silent auction items could hardly be seen because of the viewers checking out the merchandise.One gent even tried on the Villy’s Di de los Muertos bike for size.

Ann Kellogg Schooler, Cindy Turner, Margaret Spellings and Matt Schooler

Ann Kellogg Schooler, Cindy Turner, Margaret Spellings and Matt Schooler

Co-Chairs Lesley Chambless, Ann Kellogg Schooler and Margaret Spellings were stopped every two inches and being congratulated on the event. In turn the gals attributed the success to their advisor/Past Chair Cindy Turner.

Lesley Chambless

Lesley Chambless

Dennis and Laura Moon

Dennis and Laura Moon

Dolores Sosa Green

Dolores Sosa Green

Lynn McBee and Shannon Callewart

Lynn McBee and Shannon Callewart

While Ann and Trinity River Mission Executive Director Dolores Sosa Green embraced the theme — Day of the Dead — by having her face made up, Margaret, Lesley and other guests like Sunie and Steve Solomon, Laura and Dennis Moon, Lynn McBee, Shannon Callewart, Caren and Pete Kline, Sara and David Martineau and Gail Fischer with daughter Elizabeth Fischer and sons, Ford Fischer and Chad Fischer, steered toward the more traditional party look.

Chad Fischer, Gail Fischer and Ford Fischer

Chad Fischer, Gail Fischer and Ford Fischer

Cliff Fischer and Charles Haley

Cliff Fischer and Charles Haley

Cliff Fischer was talking with Charles Haley about their upcoming poker game that Cliff had won at Cattle Baron’s Ball.

On stage Rise and Shine played loud enough to be heard on the other side of the Trinity. And while the stage was strong enough to handle the band, organizers decided that it might not hold up for the Mission Ole dancers. No problem. The performances were held on the concrete walkway.  

Thanks to emcee Scott Murray pulling double duty as the live auctioneer, the net was $315,000, nearly double what was pulled in last year.

JUST IN: Mission Olé Hauls In A Big Net For Trinity River Mission

Dolores Sosa Green

Dolores Sosa Green

All that partying at the Trinity River Mission’s 17th Annual Mission Olé on Thursday, October 27, paid off big time.

Event Co-Chairs Lesley Chambless, Ann Kellogg Schooler and Margaret Spellings just got word from the bean counters that the fundraiser at Chicken Scratch netted … not raised… netted $315,000. That’s nearly double from last year’s Ole.

TRM CEO Dolores Sosa Green was hopeful the take would be good, but even she probably never imagined that number.

Congrats!

MySweetCharity Opportunity: 2016 Mission Olé

According to Mission Olé Event Co-Chairs Lesley Chambless, Ann Kellogg Schooler and Margaret Spellings,

Ann Schooler (File photo)

Ann Kellogg Schooler (File photo)

Margaret Spellings (File photo)

Margaret Spellings (File photo)

Lesley Chambless (File photo)

Lesley Chambless (File photo)

Trinity River Mission invites you to support our children at its 17th Annual Mission Olé fundraiser to be held on Thursday, October 27, 2016. This year’s Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead)-inspired celebration will be held at Chicken Scratch and The Foundry, just west of the Margaret Hunt Hill bridge in the trendy Trinity Groves area. The party will feature food from both Chicken Scratch and Smoke with signature margaritas and cocktails. Look forward to a magical evening hosted under a magnificent tent with sparkling lights, outdoor fire pits, mariachis, ballet folklórico dancers and much more.

Mission Ole*

Mission Ole*

“All we need is you to be a part of this unique fundraiser that benefits the children of Trinity River Mission (TRM). TRM is a highly respected and recognized volunteer-based community learning center in West Dallas serving over 550 disadvantaged children and teens, and their families. Importantly, all the children are served a nutritious afterschool meal, as it is very hard to learn when one is hungry. TRM’s programs help students learn to read, improve math skills, complete their homework, and gain life skills. As TRM’s children grow, they receive mentoring and financial support for college and their eventual productive careers.

“TRM addresses head-on a critical need in its West Dallas neighborhood. Did you know that in West Dallas only 35% of high school freshman graduate in four years, only 1.6% of high school seniors are deemed college-ready, and only 2.2% graduate from college? By coming to TRM, children learn how to succeed in school and beyond. TRM has a proven track record with incredible results.

“TRM has a waiting list of over 500 children! Clearly, there is a critical need for the services that TRM offers. Additional funds will help TRM expand its programs, continue to enhance quality, and reach even more children. Currently, it costs $1,800 to support one student’s total academic and personal enrichment through TRM programs for a year.

“Mission Olé is TRM’s largest fundraiser. By donating to Mission Olé, you become our partner in helping children in West Dallas become successful, contributing members of our community.  Visit www.missionole.com.”

* Graphic provided by 2016 Mission Olé

Round Robin October 29: 16th Annual Mission Ole And Stars And Stripes Film Festival Sponsors Party

Thursday, October 29, proved to once again return Thursday to its status as the busiest day of the week. Earlier in the day there were The Dallas Opera’s First Sight luncheon and fashion show at the Winspear and Mosaic’s 5th Annual Partners and Possibilities Luncheon at the Addison Conference and Theatre Center north of town. That was just the warm up for the evening’s activities that included the 2015 David Wiessman Bridge Builder Award Dinner at The Adolphus Hotel co-chaired by Holly Deason and Blaine Nelson and honoring Ron Haddock. Even Fort Worth was buzzing with the NewDay Services for Children and Families at The Cendera Center!

But back in Dallas, there was still fun and fundraising going on.

16th Annual Mission Ole

Greg Nieberding

Greg Nieberding

The Day of the Dead makeup

The Day of the Dead makeup

Mission Ole alter

Mission Ole alter

Despite being within a hair’s breadth of October 31, the Trinity River Mission fundraiser’s 16th Annual Mission Ole could have easily been mistaken for a Halloween dress rehearsal. Evidently Chair Greg Nieberding recognized the growing popularity of “Dia de los Muertos (The Day of the Dead)” and deemed it to be the theme for the gathering at 3015 at Trinity Groves.

Gary and Cindy Turner

Gary and Cindy Turner

Against a wall was a presentation of art that was in keeping with “The Day of the Dead” tradition in which “alters” are created as a tribute and celebration of the life of a deceased loved one. The artwork contains such things as the person’s favorite things like food, pets, musical instruments, etc.  On this occasion the alter was filled with artwork honoring Donna Graham, who founded Trinity River Mission.

Trinity River Mission Ballet folklorico dancers

Trinity River Mission Ballet folklorico dancers

One highlight of the evening was the ballet folklorico performance by Trinity River Mission students. Not only were they adorable in their colorful costumes, they knew how to do a showstopping presentation to the delight of their parents and guests like Cindy and Gary Turner, Paige McDaniel and Joanna Clarke.

Still another memorable moment was TRM grad Carina Torres, who went on to graduate from Sam Houston State University with a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in dance. She told of the importance TRM had in her life.  A little later in the evening Carina, who is a founding member of Nicolay Dance Works in Huntsville, returned to perform a solo dance.

The evening was such a hit that they’ve already reserved 3015 at Trinity Groves on Thursday, November 3, for the 17th Annual Mission Ole.

Stars & Stripes Film Festival Patron Party

Tanya Foster and Lisa Cooley

Tanya Foster and Lisa Cooley

North of the Dallas North Tollway at Lisa and Clay Cooley’s spread, the sponsors of the Stars & Stripes Film Festival were filling the mansion to talk about the upcoming fundraiser for Sons of the Flag. While some guests chose to ride the Cooley Cart from the estate’s entrance to the residence, others decided to walk along the drive past the tennis court and pond and over the bridge to the front door. Shoot! It was such a gorgeous night, why not?

Pam and Vin Perella, Pam Busbee and Christie Carter

Pam and Vin Perella, Pam Busbee and Christie Carter

With SOTF Founder/President/CEO Ryan Parrott greeting folks like Pam and Vin Perella, Lynn and Allan McBee, Christie Carter and Pam Busbee at the door, Festival Co-Chairs Tanya and Pete Foster were talking with vets and going over details of the November 12-15 festivities at the Angelika plus the lunch on Friday, November 13, at the Dallas Country Club with Gen. Tommy Franks.

Midway through the evening, the Cooley staircase was put to use to tell about the upcoming film festival. From it Ryan told the history of Sons of the Flag and how it really started with his meeting Ret. Capt. Sam Brown, who suffered third-degree burns over 30% of his body.

Ryan and Director of Development Mary Meier even got David Sargent of Stripe-A-Zone to get up on the staircase and tell how important it was for his company to be the presenting sponsor of the festival.

 James Faust

James Faust

BTW, the opening night will not only feature “Zero Dark Thirty,” but Seal Team Member/native Texan Tyler Black will be on hand.

Also on hand was Dallas Film Society Artistic Director James Faust, who helped curate the collection of films. He was also looking forward to the DFS’s The Art of Film on Friday, November 20, at The Space on Oak Lawn with Isabella Rossellini.

Mission Ole Patrons Got A First Look At Greg Nieberding’s Labor Of Love

A couple of guests kept asking homeowner/Mission Ole Chair Greg Nieberding if his home was Texas contemporary. The ever diplomatic and patient Greg just kept smiling and saying, “It’s midcentury contemporary.”

Paige McDaniel and Greg Nieberding

Paige McDaniel and Greg Nieberding

Actually, it was 2015 miracle. Greg had just laid his hands on the 58-year-old home only a block away from a former First Family back in May. The Jack Wood-designed home had had only one owner, but it needed a bit of updating. Still Greg was not going to sacrifice the beauty and charm of the 3,000+ square-foot structure’s origins.

A look in the living room

A look in the living room

Respecting the beauty of the wood and the screen panels, the terrazzo floors, the low-beamed ceiling and white leather sectional in the den and floor-to-ceiling windows, he created a home that Don Draper would have killed for.

Living room

Living room

Nutone Built-In Center

Nutone Built-In Center

The kitchen boasted 21st century appliance alongside touches of the “Father Knows Best” era like the vintage-colored Geneva cabinets and Formica counter tops with the 1960’s high-tech NuTone In-Built food center that could handle appliances for mixing, blending, juicing and sharpening knives.

Thanks to smartly positioned windows and a new roof, Greg fessed up that his electricity bill had only checked in around the $200 mark. But on the downside, the 78 sprinkler heads satisfying the near-acre property with towering trees backing up to Tom Hick’s estate had hit the $500 zone.

Lady of the Dead

Lady of the Dead

Gail Fischer and Cindy Turner

Gail Fischer and Cindy Turner

Cupaioli design

Cupaioli design

For its debut, Greg opened it up for the Mission Ole patron party on Thursday, October 1. As crickets were heard “Cricketing” in the distance, guests like Gail Fischer, Cindy Turner, Dawn Spalding and Mission Ole Honorary Chair Katherine Wynne arrived to be greeted by a life-size Lady of the Dead. The dress was glorious. Her face could have used a skillful plastic surgeon.

In one room, Paige McDaniel pointed out a charming youth’s outfit in a glass frame. It had been designed in the 1960’s by the home’s previous owner, Ed Cupaioli. Greg had found it online and preserved it complete with the label showing.

Trinity River Mission CEO Dolores Sosa Green said ticket sales for the Thursday, October 29th Mission Ole’s Dia de los Muertos (The Day of the Dead) at Trinity Groves were moving swiftly. While it’s just hours away from Halloween, Dia de los Muertos is traditionally celebrated in Mexico on November 1. But why not get a head start and get all costumed up for the benefit of Trinity River Mission.

 

Trinity River Mission Kicks Off Mission Ole Fundraiser With Friends And Fans At Sugar Skull Cafe

Sugar Skull Cafe

Sugar Skull Cafe

Greg Nieberding

Greg Nieberding

Forget all the hoop-la about toned legs and unflabby arms. In the summer, a gal’s shoulders are an absolute must-have body accessory. If you’re gonna show off a sizzling tan, then a flirty, curved shoulder is not only a simple must-have, it’s a must! And what better way to show those curves than in a killer sundress.

While some stayed put inside Sugar Skull Cafe in Trinity Groves,  a lot of them were on the cafe’s wood deck for the Mission Ole Launch Party with a flawless view of the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge. The fellows like Mission Ole Chair Greg Nieberding, who is a four-year Mission Ole veteran, opted for pastel shirts.

Food fanning

Food fanning

Unfortunately, the guests like Nancy Gopez, Joanna Clarke and Paige McDaniel weren’t the only ones drawn to the event, especially the food. A couple of the Sugar Skull staff stood over the guacamole, queso and other edibles fanning flying little critters away.

But forget the shoulders and pastel stuff. The news of the night was the Trinity River Mission’s 16th Annual Mission Ole fundraiser that will take place on Thursday, October 29, at 3015 at Trinity Groves. The theme will be “Day of the Dead,” with Katherine Wynne serving as honorary chair.

Dolores Sosa Green

Dolores Sosa Green

Whoa! Before you go off thinking that it’s gonna be a Halloween-costume party, regroup. According to TRM CEO Dolores Sosa Green, her staff came up with the theme that is “a traditional Mexican celebration, a way to celebrate loved ones who have passed.” There will be mariachi band, tamales, hot chocolate and Day of the Dead bread plus face painting. How simply wonderful. Usually just the kids get to have their faces painted. It’s about time for grownups to have more than the usual war paint.

Greg added his two cents, saying, “They [Trinity River Mission] do such good work. I’d love to see them be more visible in the community. When I received a call from someone who said, ‘We are thinking of asking a man to chair the event this year,’ I said, ‘Great!’ Then they said, ‘You are that man!’ Mission Ole is a fun event. It will be a party atmosphere.”

Round Robin September 27: Bingo Luncheon, Mission Ole And Pegasus Ball

Following Friday night’s TACA RBC Wealth Management Custom Auction and the James Beard Foundation’s Taste America: Dallas, people hardly had time to grab a couple of hours of sleep. Then they had to rise and shine, have a steaming cup of latte and head off to Saturday, September 27’s demands.

DCAC League’s Bingo Luncheon

For those who were suffering from cabin fever due to power outages, there was the Dallas Children’s Advocacy Center’s League 13th Annual Bingo Luncheon at Belo Mansion. Proceed from the event help “fund the Family Advocacy, Forensic Interview, Therapy and Education programs at DCAC, as well as the Clothes Closet.”

Mission Ole

Later in the evening the beautiful peeps heard the call of the Trinity River Mission’s Mission Ole. In contrast to years before, when the event took place in private homes like Laurie Sands Harrison’s, Co-Chairs LeeAnne Locken and D’Andra Simmons Lock decided to shift the party venue to One Arts Plaza. Thanks to a spectacular night with stars and strings of lights overhead, it was a perfect time to party out in the driveway.

Pegasus Ball

Barry Corbin

Barry Corbin

Over at the Fairmont, it was Stetsons and bona fide boots for the gents like Barry Corbin and rhinestones and flowing gowns for the gals like Honorary Chair Yvonne Crum and Carolyn Tillery.

Yvonne Crum, Bryant and Carolyn Tillery

Yvonne Crum, Bryant and Carolyn Tillery

The occasion was the Pegasus Ball benefiting the Autism Treatment Center with a record amount of money being raised. The black-tie gala was the final event of the three-day Roundup for Autism that started Thursday in Fort Worth. As Roundup Founder Bobby Norris explained, “Each day, there are more and more families seeking answer, searching for experienced and dedicated therapists to provide early-intervention services and life-long programs that will be there for years to come.”

Founded in 1976, “ATC just purchased its 22nd community-based group home and is currently expanding its Dallas Therapy Clinic. As a parent of an adult daughter with autism and as a board member of ATC, I am proud of our many accomplishments.”

Chocolate Labrador puppy

Chocolate Labrador puppy

But there was an “Oops!” that came to light at the reception. A cute chocolate Labrador puppy was on a leash being walked around the area and being introduced to guests. When contacted, organizers swore that neither the pup nor a quarter horse corralled outside the Regency Ballroom was being auctioned off. However, they did admit that the Lab had been given a “very good home” in exchange for a donation. That was the “Oops!” — that sticky Dallas ordinance that prohibits the use of animals for any form of nonprofit fundraising.

Upon learning of the ordinance, Autism Treatment Center’s Development Director Neil Massey responded, “This has been a good teaching moment for us — to do more due diligence and make sure that what we’re doing isn’t just because we’ve seen others do it, but to make sure we comply with ordinances.” He then added that they would make a donation to a rescue organization.

Mission Olé Is Moving Its Party To One Arts Plaza

LeeAnne Locken and D'Andra Simmons-Lock (File photo provided by Mission Ole)

LeeAnne Locken and D’Andra Simmons-Lock (File photo provided by Mission Ole)

Another change of plans just came in. The Mission Olé Co-Chairs LeeAnneLocken and D’Andra Simmons-Lock have decided to move the Saturday, September 27th Trinity River Mission fundraiser from 3015 at Trinity Groves to One Arts Plaza.

So, don’t change the date, time, leadership or beneficiary. Just head your vehicles to One Arts Plaza come September 27.

Trinity River Mission’s “Mission Ole” Kick-Off Party Reveals A Change In Arrangements For 2014

The Trinity River Mission’s Mission Ole has changed its usual POA for its fall fundraiser. Instead of having the party at a private home, it’s headed in a different direction. Here’s a report from the kick-off party that took place at Elements on Wednesday, July 16:

LeeAnne Locken and D'Andra Simmons-Lock*

LeeAnne Locken and D’Andra Simmons-Lock*

“This year’s Mission Ole benefiting Trinity River Mission will take place on Saturday, September 27, at 3015 at Trinity Groves. The VIP reception begins at 6:30 PM and the party starts at 7 PM. The fundraiser will feature Live & Silent Auctions, Tequila Tastings and Latin music and dancing.

LeeAnne Locken and D’Andra Simmons-Lock are the co-chairs this year, and Joyce and Linus Wright are the honorary chairs.

Phil Brumley*

Phil Brumley*

[At the kick-off party] “Guest Tiffany Hendra won a $200 gift card which was graciously donated by Elements for the raffle, and a huge highlight was the presence of both Dee Simmons and Doris Jacobs. Guests enjoyed the wonderful sounds Phil Brumley (photo attached) on guitar his renditions of John Legend‘s “All of Me” and Bon Jovi‘s “Living on a Prayer” had guests singing and humming along to the music!

“Trinity River Mission is a volunteer-based community learning center that promotes literacy, encourages academic success and develops effective life skills among disadvantaged youth in West Dallas.”

Photo credit: Thomas Garza

Mission Olé Partied On With Singer Radney Foster, Wendy Krispin Fare And Candlelight Despite A Power Outage And Heat

Steve Stodghill was running late Friday. Seems he had been on the golf course and was waylaid. Now, normally that wouldn’t have been a problem. However, guests were already arriving at the Stodghill estate for the Mission Olé party, when Steve sneaked in wearing madras shorts and a sports shirt. While wife Anne was flawlessly doing double duty in the hosting department, Steve took a quick shower and appeared as if he’d been there the whole time.

Anne Stodghill, Allan and Lynn McBee

Anne Stodghill, Allan and Lynn McBee

Unfortunately, Honorary Chair Chad Hennings was a no-show. Seems the hunk was under the weather.

But his absence was hardly noticed once the crowd started getting crowded. Early in the evening the Stodghill mansion was crammed with people. The probable cause was the A/C. Don’t you know that when the temperature hits the 90’s, A/C is everyone’s best friend. Ironically, last year’s Mission Ole was held in October, when it was so chilly that a tent covered the patio and outdoor heaters warmed guests as they signed in at the outside entrance. This year Tri-Chairs Angela Choquette, Carey Deuber and Maggie Kipp moved the Trinity River Mission fundraiser up a month and what do you know — people hunkered down indoors because of the 97-degree temperature.

Emily Eisenhauer, Steve Stodghill and Maggie Kipp

Emily Eisenhauer, Steve Stodghill and Maggie Kipp

But Dallasites know how to dress for any occasion, and a little heat only allows the gals to wear sheer, short dresses with bare shoulders, boots and loads of turquoise. You know turquoise is right on target for an event with the theme, “The Mountains of Santa Fe.”

Speaking of boots, Dawn Spalding was wearing a pair that will be going through a bling update. She’s having glittery gems added to the boots for the October 5th Cattle Baron’s Ball.

One of the topics of the evening was the Celebrity Waiter Luncheon held earlier in the day benefiting Family Gateway. Celebrity waiter Shona Gilbert, who had worn a provocative black outfit at the luncheon showcasing her sizable tattoo, reported that a Family Gateway board member had called her over to “try to tone down” the on-stage twerking. Shona innocently claimed ignorant on what “twerking” was. On the other hand, LeeAnne Locken demonstrated in the Stodghill hallway for Christopher Wright how she had been one of the celebrity waiters who had twerked.

LeeAnne Locken

LeeAnne Locken

As the sun set and the crowd moved to the backyard with the longhorn statue, the Wendy Krispin fare and the stage for the auction, poor hostess Anne had her hands full. Seems the outdoor lights went on the fritz and Anne was hustling around the pool house, trying to troubleshoot. It wasn’t like they had tested the system a week before or even a day before, but Friday night the electricity gremlins were staging a power outage.

One guest eating by the light of the pool asked his table companion, “What is that? Beans?” No, it was sweet potatoes.

However, this crowd is not the fragile variety. If anything they rallied to cause with one person laughing, “Frown lines never show up in the dark.”

The lack of planned lighting didn’t deter emcee/auctioneer Steve Kemble. He just used a couple of little flashlights to read his notes.

Dawn Spalding and Radney Foster

Dawn Spalding and Radney Foster in the Stodghill ballroom

While the auction was going on, entertainer Radney Foster was warming up in the Stodghills’ ballroom. When approached about providing a serenade as one item to be auctioned, he was both flattered and impressed with the idea of helping to raise funds in this manner for the TRM. It wasn’t like he hadn’t already donated “a big chunk of proceeds” from one of his CD’s on sale at the party for TRM. “I’m happy to be here,” he said. “It’s a very cool thing.”

Emily Eisenhauer, who had seen Radney at the Kessler Theater a couple of weeks ago, warned others, “He’s amazing!”

At 8:50 p.m., Radney took his place on the stage lit by two little lights and a couple of candles flickering on a table in front of him. While he admitted that “I can’t see the strings on my guitar to save my life,” the glowing lights created a lovely setting for his serenade to Adrienne Strodel with a song that he had just written the week before.

Turquoise Is The Diamond Du Jour For Mission Olé

Shona Gilbert antique turquoise and sterling silver necklace

Shona Gilbert antique turquoise and sterling silver necklace

Shona Gilbert necklace

Shona Gilbert necklace

Turquoise is the diamond of the southwest. It just happens to blend the best of blue with the whimsy of yellow and a touch of green. It’s never stuffy and goes wonderfully with thick, woolly sweaters or on a tanned wrist. It makes even the most worn-out, shabby jeans and white shirt take on a super-duper sparkle. Plus the stone seems to only appear at happy and festive occasions.

So perhaps that why jewel designing nymph Shona Gilbert hooked on to Mission Olé’s “Mountains of Santa Fe­” and is hosting a trunk show with 20% of sales benefiting Trinity River Mission.

It takes place from 6 to 8 p.m. on Wednesday, August 21. For deets, check with 2013 Mission Ole Tri-Chair Maggie Kipp.

Once you have a piece of turquoise, your homerun of fashion is made when it comes to fashionable western. Oops, you already knew that.

Mission Olé Is Bringing Santa Fe To Anne And Steve Stodghill’s Estate With Radney Foster Strumming His Guitar

 Angela Choquette, Cary Deuber and Maggie Kipp (File photo)

Angela Choquette, Cary Deuber and Maggie Kipp (File photo)

The Mission Olé Tri-Chairs Angela Choquette, Cary Deuber and Maggie Kipp have been busy putting final touches on the September 6 fundraiser for Trinity River Mission. Why, just to make absolutely sure that everything was going to fit the theme, “Mountains of Santa Fe,” Maggie checked the New Mexico getaway  out earlier this summer. Ah, the sacrifices one has to make.

Chad Henning (File photo)

Chad Henning (File photo)

And then there is that honorary chair — Chad Hennings. Why, shoot! He’s just fun to look at!

This year’s soiree is a month earlier than last year’s party that got hit by a out-of-nowhere cold snap, forcing guests to wear woollies and boots. Since this year’s Mission Ole is the very first Friday after Labor Day, it will be one of the very first parties of the season and everyone will be catching up on what happened over the summer, like who all got refreshed? Divorced? Pregnant? A heart stent? Very cozy with the law? We ain’t talking. You’ll just have to get in the fundraising party circuit to find out. Let’s just say everybody was very busy this summer, so there’ll be a lot of “Oh, really!”-ing going on.

And, of course, with a Santa Fe theme, you just know the indoor/outdoor party will feature clothes that are breezy and colorful with turquoise jewelry being the accessory du jour.

Radney Foster*

Radney Foster*

And what about entertainment, you ask? In addition to a Steve Kemble sassy live auction and a silent auction, the trio has arranged to have singer/songwriter Radney Foster play an acoustic set. Known for “Just Call Me Lonesome,” he was born in Del Rio and found his way to the University of the South in Sewanee, Tennessee. But after giving the hallowed halls a chance, he decided to take his guitar to Nashville for a different type of education. There he partnered up with Bill Lloyd and the duo’s “’Since I Found You’ became a Top Ten hit for the Sweethearts of the Rodeo, and on the strength of their demo tape, RCA signed them as recording artists.” After recording three albums from 1987-1990, they decided to “amicably disband.” Now, fast-forward 23 years during which Radney recorded “Just Call Me Lonesome,” “Nobody Wins,” “Labor of Love,” “See What You Want To See,” “Are You Ready For the Big Show?,” “Another Way to Go,” “And Then There’s Me” and “This World We Live In.”

Kate Rose Marquez, Wendy Krispin,Jill Tananbaum, Nancy Gopez, Roz Colombo and Cindy Stager (File photo)

Kate Rose Marquez, Wendy Krispin,Jill Tananbaum, Nancy Gopez, Roz Colombo and Cindy Stager (File photo)

The setting will be perfect for Santa Fe fashions, loads of Wendy Krispin food and signature cocktails and Radney’s acoustical performance. It will be at Anne and Steve Stodghill’s Preston Hollow estate that is tailor-made for such an event. Love the pool. Love the longhorn. Love hanging around the kitchen with Wendy scurrying around making sure that everybody’s chowing down. Love the nooks and crannies around the house where you can settle back and chat it up. Love the fact that the invitations are hitting mailboxes this week.

Stodghill estate (File photo)

Stodghill estate (File photo)

If you haven’t received your invite by next week, go ahead and hit the website to reserve your place. No, better yet, don’t wait. Go ahead and do it now. Then go shopping for your Santa Fe outfit.

* Photo credit: Marshall Foster

Mission Olé’s Tri-chairs Choquette, Deuber And Kipp Announce Big Plans And Big Goal For Trinity River Mission Fall Fundraiser

Angela Choquette

Angela Choquette

Cary Deuber

Cary Deuber

A year ago when Angela Choquette, Cary Deuber and Maggie Kipp took a “girls’ trip” to St. Croix, little did they know they would be chairing this fall’s Mission Olé. Perhaps all co-chairs should travel together before taking on such a task because this threesome really enjoys being together, as they proved June 11 at the MO kick-off party at Antèks for the annual Trinity River Mission fundraiser.

Chad Henning

Chad Hennings

It’s just too bad that Honorary Celebrity Chair Chad Hennings didn’t go on the “girls’ trip.” He might have been better prepared for the gal gab. For instance, they were giggling about an episode that recently happened where a friend realized that her under apparel wasn’t quite appropriate for her short skirt and had to do a quick purchase and exchange for a party, slipping the unmentionable in her purse. As the trio told the story, the more-than-adorable Chad’s cheeks got redder and redder.

How did the former Dallas Cowboy/Super Bowl player get involved with Trinity River Mission? Chad explained he was giving a speech for Texas Bank one day and TRM board member Jim White asked him to tour the TRM facility, and he was hooked.

But back to the MO kick-off. This was one of the first times that MO has had such a K-O, but they wanted to get things off with a blowout since changes were in the air for the fall event that will be held at Anne and Steve Stodghill’s home. Anne was on hand for the announcement, but Steve was nowhere to be seen due a trial. After all, the guy does have to work for a living.

Steve Kemble

Steve Kemble

But luckily another Steve was on hand to help the gals with announcements — Steve Kemble, who will also emcee the event.

This year’s theme will be “The Mountains of Santa Fe,” with a country-type band, an auction including a silver jewel box donated by Antèks and a goal of raising $175,000.

Maggie Kipp

Maggie Kipp

Hello! That’s a mighty big goal, since last year’s take was $100,000. But to help the gals reach it, Antèks owner Jason Lenox made a generous offer. Almost too generous. When Maggie revealed that Jason was going to give customers a 25% discount on all store purchases through June 15, Jason and his staffers nearly had the blood drain from their faces. Quickly, someone corrected her. Antèks would donate 25% of sales to MO, if TRM or MO was mentioned. Whew!

Cary was up at bat next thanking Jason, Antèks and Chef Shaun Collins of Main & Sides and Domaine Wine Co. for providing the abundance of libations and food making the rounds at the K-O.

Last up was Angela, who announced that the date for the fundraiser was September 6, adding “We’re gonna pretend like it’s really cold,” since it’s the Mountain of Santa Fe theme.  If you’ll recall, last year it was indeed cold, so the guests were bundled up in sweaters and boots.

Karen Lukin

Karen Lukin

In a surprise announcement, Whole Foods’ Karen Lukin revealed that on June 26 the Preston Forest Whole Foods store would donate 5% of sales to MO as part of its Community Giving Day program.

And speaking of food, the Mo co-chairs plan on having New Mexican-style food with green chile and possibly ice sculptures in the shape of the Santa Fe mountains.

Jennifer Christzberg and Bryanna Roop

Jennifer Chreitzberg and Bryanna Roop

Among the 100 on hand to hear about plans were “cowgirl advisors” Nancy Gopez, Dawn Spalding and Kristi Bare, plus Lynn McBee and auction co-chairs Bryanna Roop and Cinemark’s Jennifer Chreitzberg, who was talking about the theater chain’s Classic Series. If you’ve never seen some of the true classic movies digitally restored on the big screen, don’t hesitate. June is the Spielberg Showcase.

QUICKIE: 25% Of Antèks Sales Through Saturday To Benefit Mission Ole And Trinity River Mission

Jason Lenox

Jason Lenox

Last night at the Mission Ole kick-off Antèks proprietor Jason Lenox announced that between now and Saturday Antèks would give 25% of purchase prices to the Mission Ole fundraising for Trinity River Mission. More deets about the party to follow, but did want to let you know ASAP about the opportunity.

But you’ve got to mention Mission Ole and/or Trinity River Mission. If not, you’ll pay the same price, but TRM won’t benefit.

2013 Mission Olé Kick-off Party Slated For Antèks On June 11

Mission Olé

Mission Olé

2013 Mission Olé Co-chairs Angela Choquette, Cary Deuber and Maggie Kipp are getting things going with a kick-off party from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. on Tuesday, June 11, at Antèks.

The trio will reveal plans for the September 6th Trinity River Mission fundraiser.

Everyone is invited to the kick-off. Only catch? You’ve got to RSVP to get in the door. That’ll help the gals to have enough Main & Sides hors d’oeuvres and Domaine Wine Company’s wine and champagne on hand.

Rain And Chill Didn’t Hamper Mission Ole One Little Drop Thanks To Laurie Sands Harrison’s Hospitality

After last week’s drench by the clouds above on Cattle Baron’s, Mission Ole‘s Co-chairs Kristi Bare and Nancy Gopez braced up for their Saturday night fundraiser for Trinity River Mission.

That may sound easy, but when you have more than 200 guests plus gaming plus entertainment plus an auction . . . well, there aren’t many homeowners who can accommodate a rainy backup plan.

Kristi Bare, Laurie Sands Harrison, Steve Kemble and Nancy Gopez

But Laurie Sands Harrison ain’t just any homeowner. When she got her divorce a couple years back, she considered selling the marvelous home, but then she rethought that idea. After all, she had remodeled the home ages ago with the idea of making it entertaining-friendly. Why, there are three spots just ideal for bars! And then there were the girls. Her girls. Her beautiful daughters, who saw home-sweet-home as a great place to bring friends over for partying and family celebrations. Well, that did it. Laurie stayed put and Mission Ole was oh-so grateful.

But still . . . the decision to tent the outdoor terrace still can throw even the most fabulous property into disarray. Again, not Ms. Laurie. The tent not only fit the terrace perfectly, its see-through walls allowed guests to see the marvelous grounds including “that pool.”

It was a perfect decision on the part of Kristi and Nancy, because with tables and chairs plus a bar, guests took to the tent like Texas-OU fans to a party. To play it safe because of the dip in temperatures, they girls also arranged for outdoor heaters including at the sign-in area, so guests would be nice and warm while registering.

Angela Choquette, Maggie Cooke Kipp, Shay Geyer and Katy Bock

But the chill of the night still inspired most of the gals to pull out those high-heel boots and vests and jackets in a variety of materials. Maggie Cooke Kipp had no idea what her vest was made of — it was on loan from her St. Valentine’s Day co-chair partner Angela Choquette.

Among the crowd who filled the mansion and the tent were Community Partners of Dallas’ Paige McDaniel carrying a small Neiman Marcus shopping bag. It was a gift for Greg Nieberding, who had hosted Paige and CPD Development Director Joanna Clarke at Cattle Baron’s. In addition to being the gals’ host, he also won the Mercedes in the CBB raffle. Knowing that Greg was going to be at the Mission Ole shindig, Paige was going to present him with a silver Gucci keychain. Speaking of raffles, Paige teased Joanna about her winning a $10,000 spending spree at Highland Park Village last year.

Now, you know why people buy raffle tickets!

In the back of the house right next to the kitchen, Robert Colombo was talking about his upcoming plans, including opening another Sfuzzi’s at the Shops at Willow Bend. It’s going into a redesigned space where Saks used to be. . . Betsy and Richard Eiseman were checking out the goodies in the open kitchen and making their way through the crowd. . . Caterer Wendy Krispin somehow managed to be everywhere — the outdoor grill, the kitchen and serving champagne — but she got stopped in her tracks by fans and friends … for two whole seconds. This Mission Ole is Wendy’s sixth year to cater the party.

Wendy Krispin, Jill Tananbaum, Nancy Gopez, Roz Colombo and Cindy Stager

Wendy Krispin, Jill Tananbaum, Nancy Gopez, Roz Colombo and Cindy Stager

One of the evening’s highlights was the live auction, with Steve Kemble doing the auction duties. The Grammy package was so successful that it sold twice to Simona Beal and to hostess Laurie. Perhaps they can get together with TACA Grammy package winner Annette Presley. Just wondering if L.A. is ready for that trio.

Saturday’s Mission Ole Is Going To Be High, Dry And Warm Despite Mother Nature

Weather check: It’s 72 degrees outside right now and there are some clouds in the sky.

Tomorrow at this time it’s going to be an entirely different story, with temperatures limited to the 50’s and humidity in the air.

After last Saturday’s Cattle Baron matchup with Old Ma Nature, the Mission Ole co-chairs Kristi Bare and Nancy Gopez decided to shore up their backup plans for the outdoor party at Laurie Sands Harrison’s estate. Actually, it was smarter than smart. Evidently more than the originally planned number of guests are attending, so it makes perfect sense to do an outdoor/indoor party. Plus the ladies, who are old hands at putting on events, have arranged for the paved terrace to not only have an enclosed tent, but heaters, too! 

What a perfect opportunity to wear those wools, cashmeres and leathers that you’ve been dying to pull out of the closet. And you know you really look good in ’em.

If you’ve ever been in Laurie’s home, you know that’s the dream place to spend a chilly evening with food by Wendy Krispin, beautiful people and silent and live auctions.

Speaking of which, two of the live auction items to note are:

  • Grammy Award Show (Value: Priceless)Enjoy the Grammy’s live from Bronze/300 level seating for two on Sunday February 10, 2013, in Los Angeles. Both of you are also invited to the Official Grammy Awards After-Party following the award show that evening. Package includes round-trip coach air transportation for two on American Airlines and a three-night stay Friday, February 8 to Monday, February 11, at the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza or similar hotel. Donated by:  Anonymous. (If this one goes for less than $55,000, it’s a bargain. A Grammy’s package went for $55,000 at the TACA RBC Wealth Management Custom Auction Gala a couple of weeks ago.)
  • Ultimate Sports Package (Value:$7,250) — The sports enthusiast will enjoy watching a 2012 Texas Ranger regular season home game from two front-row home-plate seats at Rangers Ballpark in Arlington and the upcoming November 19th Dallas Mavericks vs Golden State regular-season home game from two front-row seats at the American Airlines Center. Both games come with parking passes. The package also includes the use of a JLT Beverages, LP, Flagship Level Luxury Suite for the upcoming Tuesday, January 8, 2013 Dallas Stars vs Phoenix Coyotes regular-season home game. Suite includes 12 tickets, parking passes and Platinum Club access and amenities. Donated by: JLT Beverages, LP/Julie and Jim Turner.

This event presented by Texas Capital Bank is the major fundraiser for the Trinity River Mission, so it’s on regardless of what Mother Nature thinks. So there!

Share-A-Date: Mission Olé

2011 Mission Olé’s Wendy Krispin outdoor buffet (File photo)

Saturday, October 6, 2012: Mission Olé co-chairs Kristi Bare and Nancy Gopez just revealed that invitations will be hitting mailboxes for the annual Trinity River Mission fundraiser. Along with Honorary Chairs Sandra and Henry Estess, they’ve arranged something old and something new this year.

The new item is the event’s presenting sponsors.

“We have received so much support already from the community, including a new presenting sponsor, Texas Capital Bank,” said Nancy.

As for the something old, don’t go thinking it’s something dusty and worn.

Nope!

The girls have arranged to have the event to return to Laurie Sands Harrison‘s marvelous home.

According to Kristi, ­­“We are also so fortunate that the wonderful Laurie Sands Harrison has graciously agreed to open up her beautiful home and outdoor garden for this special evening.  It is sure to be a can’t-miss event as we raise funds for the important programs of Trinity River Mission.”

Laurie’s estate is simply fabulous for this “casual chic” evening. Heck, it’s pretty darn perfect for any occasion.

But Kristi and Nancy aren’t relying on Laurie to hit a home run. “We hope everyone will make plans to join us; we promise a casual chic evening, silent and live auctions, casino and lots of great drinks and food – all for a wonderful organizations that helps ensure academic success for disadvantaged youth in West Dallas,” said Nancy.

To do this they’ve also drafted the talents of their buddies to help out. Among the draftees are Wendy Krispin, who “will be back with her sumptuous Latin-inspired dinner buffet complete with a made-to-order Gordita station, pal Julian Leaver of Bella Flora Design will put his professional touch to the event décor and  America’s Sassiest Lifestyle Guru Steve Kemble will serve as master of ceremonies.”

BTW, Steve will be emceeing this Friday’s Celebrity Waiter Luncheon. The question of the week is whether he can outdo his performance last year?

Restaurant Week Brings All Types Including Adlene Harrison And David Johnson To The Table For Good Causes

The North Texas Food Bank has really been facing a challenge this year with needs greater than ever. Perhaps that’s why despite the August heat and the skeeter invasion, Restaurant Week(s) benefiting NTFB and the Lena Pope Home is a true godsend.

Despite some nattering nabobs of negativism (sub. req.), the extra-special eating out at area restaurants has help provide fundraising for NTFB and LPH.

In addition to helping NTFB and LPH and offering an opportunity for adventurous diners to explore a restaurant for just $35, it also provides work and income for folks in the restaurant industry. Whether it’s the busboy clearing the table, the vendors delivering the goods to the kitchen or the valet parkers, it keeps many in business during a traditionally down month. Why, an internationally known restaurant that a week ago had a sparsely filled parking lot was overflowing Monday night. When asked the reason, the valet smiled and said, “It’s Restaurant Week.”

Adlene Harrison and David and Debbie Johnson

One restaurant that was sampled by Bridge volunteer Debbie and KRLD’s business commentator David Johnson and Dallas political legend Adlene Harrison was Nosh. In spite of the place being

Genan Bradford

packed, Nosh waiters like Genan Bradford handled everything seamlessly.  As for the food (Kobe beef meatballs, salt and pepper calamari, espresso braised short ribs, pan-roasted native chicken, banana bread pudding, etc.), it was not only delicious but plentiful.

Pan roasted native chicken

Former acting mayor Adlene admitted that despite having a mother who was a brilliant chef, Adlene was pretty much a stranger in a kitchen. Everything else discussed during the meal was strictly off the record. Sorry, but one does not cross Adlene.

Across the way Kristi Bare and Nancy Gopez were dining and wining following a Mission Ole meeting. They’re chairing the Trinity River Mission fundraiser along with Honorary Chairs Sandra and Henry Estess. The only thing the gals shared was “save the date” — October 6. Then one of them dropped, “We’re going home to Laurie’s place.” Will update more as info comes in.

If you haven’t locked down a reservation for Restaurant Week, there’s still time.  Some restaurants have extended the program until September 2.