The Conner Gals And Julie Bagley Will Bring The Inner Child Out For Dallas Afterschool’s Annual Recess At The Dallas Arboretum In March

Even in the oldest codger, there is a kid just looking for an excuse to get out. Sure, doing a cartwheel may be out of the game plan, but there are other activities that are just too good to resist. And those activities and food groups will be part of 2017 Recess according to Event Co-Chairs Anne Conner and her daughter-in-law Ryan Conner, who will be joined by Honorary Chair /former Co-Chair/Recess Co-Founder Julie Bagley.

Ryan Conner and Anne Conner (File photo)

Julie Bagley (File photo)

The trio has arranged to have the Dallas After School fundraiser at the Dallas Arboretum’s Rosine Hall on Friday, March 23. If you’ve ever been to Recess, the you just know it will be a total kid event for big kids with a night of music, games, food, and adult juice boxes. And even the most gelled nails will be digging in Recess Sandbox for prizes galore.

Recess*

While school uniforms will not be the dress of the night, neither will business attire. This one is strictly comfy clothes.

Proceeds will support Dallas Afterschool’s mission “to improve the quality and availability of afterschool and summer programs in our community.”  Sponsorships are available now!

*Graphic courtesy of Dallas Afterschool

 

 

Dallas AfterSchool’s 5th Annual Recess Netted $125,000 Thanks To Fun And Games

Robyn Siegel and Regina Merson*

Dallas AfterSchool’s 5th Annual Recess just took place Friday at the Arboretum and the bean counters have been busy, busy, busy.

Recess Co-Chairs Regina Merson and Robyn Sieger just reported the results. Thanks to digging for goodies in the sand pile, bag toss, playing musical chairs, balancing tumble tower, and dining on off-the-diet goodies, $125,000 was netted. BTW, that’s not the gross. It’s the real deal.  No kidding.

Musical chairs*

Dallas AfterSchool is celebrating its 10th anniversary and this is a sweet way to celebrate.

* Photo credit: Steve Wrubel

Sold-Out Alert!: 2017 Recess

Another state of “Sold Out” has been revealed. Friday night’s Recess at the Dallas Arboretum is a done deal. 

As for those predictions of stormy weather, they won’t be a problem because the NorthPark-sponsored Sandbox, games, spiked juice box and music provided by Prophets and Outlaws will all be safe and sound inside Rosine Hall.

Recess*

And no need to wear stuffy, grown-up attire. It will be strictly “schoolyard chic” (aka casual chic).

Benefiting and celebrating the 10th anniversary of Dallas AfterSchool, Event Co-Chairs Regina Merson and Robyn Siegel and Honorary Co-Chairs Tanya McDonald and Janet Mockovciak have arranged for the following sponsors:

  • Capture the Flag ($25,000) – The Baldridge Foundation
  • Simon Says ($10,000) – Lydia and William Addy, Baird, Strategic Wealth Partners/Colleen and Peter Bowler and Janet and John Mockovciak
  • Red Rover ($5,000) – Anne and Terry Conner, Christina K. Hanger and Tanya and Ken McDonald
  • Duck Duck Goose ($2,500) – Philip Theodore Bee Charitable Trust, Kristi and Brian Erickson, Cherri and Jack Musser, Cindy and Howard Rachofsky, Ernst and Young and Tenet Healthcare
  • Four Square ($1,000) – Christy Bednar, Sheela and Marc Birnbaum, Kathi and Chris Child, Serena Simmons Connelly, Maria and Douglas Cramer, The Donachie Foundation, Laurie and Craig Dunn, Angela and Mark Frederiksen, Abby and Michael Gregory, Sarah Losinger, Christina and Tim Norris, Tricia and Eric Stammberger, Social Venture Partners Dallas, Stacy and Mack Hicks and The Fijolek Family
  • Special Thanks and In-Kind Donors – Aimbridge Hospitality, BANCO, Cindy Ferris, Dallas Arboretum, Kent Rathbun Catering, LeForce Entertainment, Live Nation, McShan Florist, Microsoft, NorthPark Center, Paper City, Pop Parties, Topgolf, Yellow Rose Distilling and Housed Real Estate
* Graphic courtesy of Dallas AfterSchool

Grovel Alert: Recess!

If you were planning on having a second childhood at Dallas Afterschool‘s Recess!, you’d better not take a nap. There are only 25 tickets left for the Friday, April 29th event.

Recess!*

Recess!*

And don’t let all this drizzly weather make you hesitate. It’s gonna be indoors at Sixty Five Hundred with loads of games, “cafeteria food,” music and the legendary “sandbox dig” for luxury goodies. If you haven’t been to this event, you haven’t enjoyed just plain fun.

Honorary Chair Serena Simmons Connelly and Host Committee Chair Cindy Schwartz recommend wearing something casual chic. So give your tuxedos and cocktail dresses the night off.

* Graphic courtesy of Dallas Afterschool

MySweetWishList: Dallas Afterschool

According to Dallas Afterschool Development and Events Coordinator Shannon D. Holloway,

“This year, Dallas Afterschool’s holiday wish is to ensure that all Dallas children have access to safe, quality afterschool and summer programming. Working towards our mission to improve the quality of afterschool and summer programs in our community, we have transformed 16 programs into certified high quality sites, and helped hundreds of others work towards national afterschool quality standards ensuring children are safe when school is out, but work is not. We’ve also helped our community grow towards a better understanding of afterschool education by creating findafterschooldallas.org, which helps parents find out of school time care based on location, time, activities offered and more.

Dallas Afterschool*

Dallas Afterschool*

“While we have impacted over 9,000 students so far this year, there is much more to be done! Dallas Afterschool’s MySweetWishList includes supporting our mission through a fully-tax deductible end of year gift to help us continue to make afterschool better for the students served by our program partners.

“You can also support Dallas Afterschool by purchasing a just released underwriting or sponsorship package for our not to be missed annual fundraiser, RECESS! being held Friday, April 29, 2016, with honorary chair, Serena Simmons Connolly.

“Give the gift of quality, safe out of school time this season, and make a difference in the lives of Dallas’ most underserved children.

“For more information on Dallas Afterschool, please visit: http://dallasafterschool.org/

For RECESS! information, please visit: Recess! or contact Jessica Dyer at [email protected].”

-By Shannon D. Holloway, Development and Events Coordinator

* Photo provided by Dallas Afterschool

Grovel Alert: Recess!

Playgrounds don’t have to be limited to kids. And proof of that is the popularity of “Recess!” benefiting Dallas Afterschool. The third annual backyard event will be taking place Friday, May 1, at adorable philanthropist Faye Briggs’ estate. Of course, there will be the sandbox, where you can dig for goodies, loads of food and games galore.

Sandbox (File photo)

Sandbox (File photo)

So much fun!

Funds raised help make “out-of-school time a safe, engaging learning environment for over 9,000 at-risk children in Dallas.”

But there’s a problem with your being one of the big kids partying at Faye’s. Darn it. There are only 20 tickets left. So, hustle now. Otherwise, you’re gonna feel like the kid who was sent to the principal’s office.

Round Robin April 25: Handbags And Heroes, Recess And Art From The Heart

Ah, spring has arrived. It wasn’t the first robin that signaled the start. It was the runny noses and teary eyes. Tis the time to check with your stockbroker about pharmaceutical investments.

But on this day even the worse weeds and pollen could be forgiven. The silks and sandals sprouted to the delight of event planners. But there was a cloud or two on the horizon. Sunday boded bruised clouds and fears of terrible weather.

But on Friday, April 25, the Pot of Gold for the Rainbow Days was in high gear at the Hilton Anatole for lunchtime and then the evening was stock-full of the fun with day two of the John Wayne Film Festival with the after-party at Trinity Groves with the Robert Lee Kobb band singing.

Handbags & Heroes

The Richardson-based fundraiser has amazed itself. About 10 years ago, two mothers (Larissa Linton and Jenny Dowen) bonded as they suffered the loss of their children to cancer. Turning their grief to helping others in similar situations, they created Heroes for Children. Their “biggy” fundraiser of Handbags and Heroes turned into a major success. Using smartphones for electronic bidding and purses from well-known socialites for auction items in Dallas and Houston, their brainchild grew dramatically.

Michael and Alison Feinstein, Jenny Dowen and Larissa Linton

Michael and Alison Feinstein, Jenny Dowen and Larissa Linton

This year’s “Heroes & Handbags Under the Big Top” took place at the Omni with the looking and bidding starting at 9:30 a.m..

"Jewel box"

“Jewel box”

But what was up for bid? How about a Chloe red leather handbag valued at $1,200. A Kate Spade black quilted mini-purse with a value of $318? It could have been “snagged” for $636. An adorable red lizard “jewel box” for $78? An Escada black leather handbag that was snaggable for $3,600? Or, a Nina Ricci neutral snake bag valued at $2,600?

Nina Ricci bag

Nina Ricci bag

Among those looking, bidding and looking some more were Kate Rose Marquez, Maggie Kipp, Simona Beal, Cara French, Lisa Troutt, Ashley Hunt, D’Andra Simmons, Cindy Stager, Kim Bannister, Keri Kaiser and Honorary Chair Tina “Bag Snob” Craig.

Keri Kaiser and Skye Brewer

Keri Kaiser and Skye Brewer

When the doors opened, the ballroom enhanced the circus theme with centerpieces and favor bags topped with toy lions. Even the luncheon menu was big-top oriented — “lemon chill” yogurt parfait with fresh seasonal berries and granola; pretzel crusted breast of chicken, whole grain mustard sauce and lobster corn dog, warm potato salad and roasted seasonal vegetables and a dessert of duo of popcorn panna cotta, caramel popcorn garnish candied apple tart and cotton candy anglaise.

Andrea Weber

Andrea Weber

When the lunch began, Luncheon Chair Andrea Weber got a bit teary eyed describing her new role of being a mom.

Larissa and Jenny presented Alison and Michael Weinstein with the Spirit of Allie and Taylor Award. Upon accepting the award, they sincerely encouraged guests to get involved.

In addition to speakers Lauren Brown and Kitty McGahey, the big news of the day was the announcement that Skye Brewer and Jennifer Dix would be co-chairing the upcoming Heroes for Children 10th anniversary celebration.

Stay tuned for deets as they develop.

Recess

Ralph Gorman and Faye Briggs

Ralph Gorman and Faye Briggs

When guests asked who was in charge of the glorious weather for Recess, all fingers pointed in one direction — Faye Briggs. Evidently the petite philanthropist had cut a deal with Ma Nature to make the evening perfect — not too hot, not too cold, but just right, especially at her estate for the 2nd Recess.

Amy Turner, Meredith Camp and Christina Norris

Amy Turner, Meredith Camp and Christina Norris

Even Co-Chairs Meredith Camp and Christina Norris were amazed at the perfect conditions for the Dallas AfterSchool fundraiser.

Alan and Sarah Losinger

Alan and Sarah Losinger

 Jerry and Emy Lou Baldridge

Jerry and Emy Lou Baldridge

Barry and Jan Baldwin and Anne and Terry Conner

Barry and Jan Baldwin and Anne and Terry Conner

Guests included Emy Lou and Jerry Baldridge, Sarah and Alan Losinger, Amy Turner, Lynn McBee, Paige McDaniel, Joanna Clarke, Robert Weatherly, Aimee Sheahan, Nancy Gopez, Jan and Barry Baldwin and Anne and Terry Conner, who will be feted at the Can Do! Luncheon on May 13.

The gorgeous estate had become a playground with areas marked The Gym, Monkey Bar and Hopscotch Bar with drinks provided by Moët Hennessy USA, Neiman Marcus Sandbox, Art Class and Cafeteria.

The Sandbox was a big hit with Dallas’ best manicured hands grabbing shovels to dig for coins that would garner such prizes as a Waterford decanter, Ippolita sterling silver men’s wavy disc cufflinks, a $1,000 Neiman Marcus gift certificate and whole lot more. BTW, this wasn’t just any old sandbox that can be found at Toys R Us. No, siree. The NM folks had arranged for eight “budding artists, ranging in ages from 7 to 12, from Color Me Empowered to design and construct” the stained-glass mosaic sides of the sandbox.

And, yes, if you’re wondering, Color Me Empowered along with Big Thought, Bridge Lacrosse, Circle of Support, Communities in Schools, Dallas Can Academies, Dallas ISD’s After School Achievers, City of Dallas Park & Recreation, Family Place, Foundation Communities, Girls on the Run, Girl Scouts of Northeast Texas, Heart House, Heart of a Warrior, Interfaith Housing Coalition, Jubilee Park, Junior Players, Project Transformation, Rainbow Days, Reader 2 Leaders, R.O.C.K., Voice of Hope, Wesley-Rankin Community Center, Wilkinson Center and YMCA of Metropolitan Dallas are all served by the Dallas AfterSchool program.

Mac and cheese

Mac and cheese

In addition to new silent auction items and games, there were electronic basketball games, bean bag tosses, and music and food that hit the spot with the grown-up kiddies. The Mac and Cheese Bar had smoked Gouda mac and cheese with cured ham assorted toppings. The Southern Comfort Food Station offered Gramma Minnie’s fried chicken strips, chunky Yukon potatoes with black pepper maple gravy and housemade ‘corn dogs’ with apple mustard. The Slider Station had guests lined up for hickory grilled buffalo sliders with pepperjack cheese and smoked bacon and parmesan-white truffle steak fries.

There were also games to keep the youngsters busy, like a hula hoop contest and musical chairs.

Art From The Heart

Report from the field:

Lindsay Lee McCain and LeeAnne Locken*

Lindsay Lee McCain and LeeAnne Locken*

“Local nonprofit Dallas Challenge held its 5th Annual ART FROM THE HEART Celebrity Art Auction & Benefit at Seven for Parties in the Dallas Design District on Friday, April 25, 2014.  Co-Chairs LeeAnne Locken and Lindsay Lee McCain welcomed guests and encouraged attendees to mix and mingle with some of the celebrities and professional artists who’s [sic] work was up for grabs and enjoy bites and beverages, all while listening to tunes spun by DJ Danny Salinas.  Jody Dean of KVIL, TV personality Hilary Kennedy and Melissa Poe Carson from Big Rich Texas were in attendance and working the crowd to drive up the bidding price on their artwork. Among those vying for these one-of-a-kind pieces were D’Andra Simmons Locke [sic] and new husband Jeremy Locke [sic], Rick and Janet Fresquez, J.B. [sic] Hayes, Shane Walker and Steve Kemble.

Hilary Kennedy*

Hilary Kennedy*

“This signature fundraising event featured an array of artwork from local and national celebrities, personalities, athletes and chefs. Wearable art was featured in the form of luxury, designer and fashion items as an interesting twist to the auction line-up. Among the artwork up for auction were pieces donated from celebrities including Willie Robertson of A&E’s Duck Dynasty, Richard Rawlings of Discovery’s Fast ‘N Loud, Chynna Phillips of Wilson Phillips, Lisa Loeb, Emmitt Smith and his family, Drew Pearson, PGS golfer David Feherty, and wearable art from Abi Ferrin, Nha Kahn [sic], SMITH II, Prashe and Status. Artwork from select professional artists such as Mary Tomás, Micheal [sic] Ledoux and Max Jones and young artists (most from Dallas Challenge youth programs) was also up for auction.

Fiona Pestell and Jody Dean*

Fiona Pestell and Jody Dean*

“Since 1984, Dallas Challenge has been a leading provider of programs to help youth stay in school, off drugs and alcohol and out of the criminal justice system. These programs and services are supported by the Annual ART FROM THE HEART Celebrity Art Auction & Benefit. To learn more, visit www.dallaschallenge.org.”

* Photo credit: Thomas 
Garza

Round Robin March 27: Dallas Opera Spring Gala, Recess And A Legendary Evening Patron Parties And JLD Scholarship Presentation

The floodgates of Dallas fundraising were wide open on Thursday, March 27. Perhaps it was to make up for the spring break week, where it seemed like the wheels came to barely moving. Or, perhaps it was due to the approaching tsunami of activities on the April calendar starting with the Final Four and Dallas International Film Festival. Whatever the reason, this Thursday evening tested the well-heeled in racing all over town.

Dallas Opera Spring Gala Patron Party

Anne Stodghill

Anne Stodghill

Over at Anne and Steve Stodghill’s mansion, it was a true celebration for the patrons of the Dallas Opera Spring Gala. While waiting for DO General Director/President Keith Cerny to arrive, Gala Co-Chairs Betty and Steve Suellentrop handled the welcome duties and pianist Jason Smith played in the background.

And at one point it appeared like the real action was taking place in the entry hall.

Meg and Jay Hunter Morris

Meg and Jay Hunter Morris

One cute couple, who seemed to glow as they arrived, were Meg and Jay Hunter Morris. As the door opened, the operatic crowd looked thrilled and the Morrises seemed so cool. That is, until the valet tapped Jay on the shoulder and whispered something about keys for the car. Oops, seems the operatic tenor had left the car but taken the keys. Now, most folks would have looked embarrassed at the faux pas, but the Morrises aren’t most folks. With a laugh and apology, Jay handed over the keys and joined the guests.

But then what would you expect from a fella from Paris, Texas? It was in Dallas that Jay, as a youngster, first experienced opera years ago. On Friday, April 5, he was to perform a private recital for the Dallas Opera Spring gala.

Vacheron Constantin timepieces

Vacheron Constantin timepieces

Patsy Donosky and Richard Eiseman

Patsy Donosky and Richard Eiseman

At the party presented by Eiseman Jewels and Vacheron Constantin, it was no surprise to see jeweler Richard Eiseman immediately open the front door as Patsy Donosky arrived and drop to one knee for her. The man knows how to stage a welcome. And speaking of staging, it was pretty nifty to see the precious Vacheron timepieces safely in a couple of cases around the entry hall. And, of course, these little gems had their own “security” standing nearby.

Richard has been very busy as Eiseman prepares to celebrate its 50 anniversary. While the salon is undergoing a massive redesign and expansion to 3,200 square feet, the operation has moved to temporary digs at NorthPark, where Kate Spade had been. How convenient! It’s just next door to “Eiseman’s recently opened dedicated Rolex space.” According to Richard, the renovation is due to be completed by June.

The Stodghill library

The Stodghill library

Across the entry hall, Bank of Texas’ The Private bank Executive VP Bob White was directed to the Stodghill library, where a crowd was gathering to check out the memorabilia including the infamous “bat cave.” One guest noted the small size of the Doc Holiday ulster overcoat. Steve followed that comment with the fact that they had to have a special form created because of the small size — smaller than a woman and larger than a child.

Carol and Don Glendenning

Carol and Don Glendenning

Once Keith arrived, he welcomed the guests and thanked them for their support of the DO especially Bank of Texas, which is the 2014 Spring Gala presenting sponsor at the Winspear on April 4th.

As typical of most parties at Stodghill manor, the party extended beyond the slated closing hour with guests like Carol and Don Glendenning, John Cody, Nick Even, Marnie and Kern Wildenthanl, Betsy Eiseman and Jennifer Cerny receiving a gift bag that included “two beautiful books by Vacheron Constantin, “The Collection 2013-2014” and “Collectors’ Island: passion art excellence, Vol. 1”, as well as a complimentary valet pass for NorthPark Center.”

Women Leader Scholarship Presentation

The presentation by the Junior League of Dallas and Mary Kay Inc. at Emmett J. Conrad High School was laudable. . . in more ways than one. As part of the new JLD Women LEAD (Learn, Excel, Achieve, Dream), an oratory competition was held among eight high school students. The winning four would receive scholarships amounting to a total of $25,000.

Given three to five minutes, each of the young women presented speeches on “How My Female Role Model Overcame Obstacles to Achieve Her Goals and How It Inspires Me.”

The selection of the following winners was based on the “merit of their scholarship applications and speech presentations:

Crayton Webb, Maria Monjaras, Deyanira Zapata-Martinez, Sumayah Al Haddad, Lauren Jackson, Shannon Powell Hart and Laura Johnson

Crayton Webb, Maria Monjaras, Deyanira Zapata-Martinez, Sumayah Al Haddad, Lauren Jackson, Shannon Powell Hart and Laura Johnson*

  • First place ($10,000) — Deyanira Zapata-Martinez, who is deciding between the University of Texas and Texas A&M to continue her education. With a passion for math and science, she plans to major in electrical engineering and neuroscience.
  • Second place ($5,000) — Lauren Jackson plans to attend Louisiana State University and major in nursing. It is her way of helping people and staying directly involved in the community.
  • Third place ($5,000) — Sumayah Al Haddad will attend community college before enrolling in the University of Arlington. She has decided to pursue a career in bio-medical engineering, as she always dreamed of being in the medical field.
  • Fourth place ($5,000) — Maria Monjaras is deciding between the University of Arlington and the University of Dallas and will pursue a degree in business administration. She aspires to be a successful entrepreneur.

According to JLD President Laura Johnson, “We are honored to award our first Women LEAD scholarships in collaboration with Mary Kay. It is our wish to empower these four women and help them achieve their dreams. We look forward to seeing the impact it will have on their lives and their future.”

Recess Patron Party

Amy Turner and Aimee Sheahan

Amy Turner and Aimee Sheahan

Patrons of the April 25th Recess fundraiser for Dallas Afterschool were in for a surprise from Amy Turner. Not only did she open her Park Cities residence for the party, she also arranged for an OMG  Recess prize — a trip to Turtle Island Resort in the Fiji Islands. The gasps that arose in the living room when the announcement was made by Dallas Afterschool CEO Tanya McDonald could be heard around the Park Cities. Ah, so that was why a flat screen near the fireplace had a slideshow of the luxury resort. Someone thought it was just a collection of Amy’s latest trip.

Anne and Terry Conner

Anne and Terry Conner

While the mood in the room rose, so did a sly smile on Amy. Talk about looking like a cat that ate the canary! She knew she had hit a home run.

To get guests like Anne and Terry Conner, Christie Carter and Aimee Sheahan in the mood for fun and games, a magician ambled through the room performing little tricks of the trade.

Recess Co-Chairs Meredith Camp and Christina Norris have arranged to have the adult-sandbox playtime and game-playing event return to the Faye Briggs estate.

Ah, but there was more good news. Well, sorta. The individual tickets have sold out. That’s good news for those who didn’t wait to buy their tickets. That’s not so good if you waited. However, Meredith and Christina have a waitlist already for you. So, don’t wait and sign up on the wait list.

A Legendary Evening Patron Party

This report from the field came in about A Legendary Evening Patron Party:

Kristine Schwope and Heather Walther**

Kristine Schwope and Heather Walther**

“Antèks Home Furnishings in the Dallas Design District was the site for a cocktail reception on Thursday, March 27 honoring patrons of A Legendary Evening, benefiting Family Compass.  Chairs Kristine Schwope and Heather Walther welcomed over fifty guests including honorary co-chair Marty Turco, who stopped by the event before meeting wife and fellow honorary chair, Kelly at their child’s band concert. Before Mr. Turco had to leave, board chair Adam Connatser quieted the group to thank Marty and Kelly for their support again this year of A Legendary Evening and for their commitment to Family Compass and its mission of building healthy families and a strong Dallas community by preventing child abuse and neglect.

Jessica Trudeau and Marty Turco**

Jessica Trudeau and Marty Turco**

“Guests mingled over wine and signature cocktails and a beautiful display of appetizers from Wendy Krispin Caterer while perusing the amazing selection of sophisticated rustic furniture, art and accessories. Anyone who made a purchase received a 10% discount with 10% of sale benefiting Family Compass. This generous offer from Antèks proprietor and designer Jason Lennox, is good through next Saturday, April 5.

“Later in the evening, executive director Jessica Trudeau recognized the chairs, host committee and many sponsors of “A Legendary Evening,” which is scheduled for Saturday, April 12 and recognized Spirit of Compassion award recipients Jan and Trevor Rees-Jones, who were not able to attend but were represented by Terese Stevenson from their foundation. The Spirit of Compassion award is given to individuals who view the prevention of child abuse as a community responsibility and whose support exemplifies that belief.”

* Photo credit: Dana Driensky
** Photo credit: Lisa Stewart

April 19 Round Robin: Heroes And Handbags And Recess!

Friday, April 19, resulted in a slam-bang traffic jam around the Omni Dallas Hotel, as well as a pop-up playground in Preston Hollow. Here are the details:

Heroes and Handbags

An absolute perfect storm of valet parking took place at the Heroes and Handbags brunch on April 19. As it was explained, a major volleyball event was taking place at the Dallas Convention Center at the crack of dawn. The players, coaches and friends had pretty much wiped out all the parking lot next to the center as well as the Omni Hotel Dallas garage. Then an impressively large medical group was swamping the hotel’s front drive and personnel. By 10:30 when the HfH guests started arriving, there were two valets on the scene to handle their parking needs, resulting in a two-block backup of vehicles.

But nothing was going to come between the ladies who love purses and the auction of designer handbags for Heroes for Children.

Some industrious ones parked a block over and hiked on over. Impressing friends, Lynn McBee did it in sky-high stilettos. Others seeing the lineup opted to run the gauntlet of the front drive. Sky Brewer, who already had a migraine headache, proved to have the driving skills of a “Bullet” stunt driver.

One veteran staffer admitted that it was one of the worse traffic jams that s/he had seen since the hotel had opened.

But once the gals got upstairs to the third floor and started checking the merchandise on display in the Trinity Ballroom lobby, the parking frustrations were history.

Handbags up for bid

Handbags up for bid

Honorary Chair Nancy Dedman and gal pal Mary Watson checked out the purses, but admitted to being a bit thrown by the cellphone bidding process. The twosome retreated to a couple of comfy chairs until the ballroom doors opened.

Nancy Dedman and Mary Watson

Nancy Dedman and Mary Watson

Not having one iota of problem in the bidding were the 600 gals who quickly filled the room. When they weren’t cell-bidding, they were talking. Gillian Breidenbach, who was getting ready for a girls’ Hawaiian vacation, reported that fireman/husband Mark had just returned from West and, “Yes, it was as bad as it sounded.” . . . Honorary Co-chair Rachael Dedman was feeling a bit guilty. Seems she told daughter Nancy to wear her Hockaday uniform for the event.

Nancy Dedman

Nancy Dedman

Turns out Nancy’s classmates wore their civvies. Not to worry. Daisy fashion is always a headturner. Plus the school girls had front-row couches in the ballroom. Yup, you read that right. Some very special guests had tables with couches for sitting. . . .Speaking of moms-and-daughters day out, Heroes for Children Co-founder Larissa Linton had her daughter Tessa Brewton visiting with mother/daughter team Dee Simmons and D’Andra Simmons. Those two teams alone could hold their own seminar on how to be fashionable.

Dee Simmons, Tessa Brewton, Larissa Linton and D'Andra Simmons

Dee Simmons, Tessa Brewton, Larissa Linton and D’Andra Simmons

And speaking of fashion, oh the treasures that were found on the tables and shelves around the room. Of course, you want some bag name dropping and, of course, you’ll find it here. “Previously Carried” Jimmy Choo camel barrel handbag (Value: $1,200), Brahamin Crocodile embossed bag in pecan (Value: $325), “Previously Carried” Prada camoflauge bag (Value: $1,200), a floral purse stuffed with a puppy (Value: $18), “Previously Carried” Valentino cognac leather handbag with gold buckle (Vale: $200), Salvatore Ferragamo camel handbag (Value: $1,200) and other goodies. Don’t you just wish they would list who had “previously carried” some of those hand-holding darlings?

But there was much more. Companies like Neiman’s, Bergdorf Goodman, Bulgari, Four Seasons Resort and Club and NorthPark had kicked in their own contributions ramping things up to a “bid or die of envy” situation.

Kristi Bare played the waiting game. She was determined to get a certain item, but decided to wait til the very last moment to put in her final bid.

Kim Bannister

Kim Bannister

Event Chair Kim Bannister was commandeering the situation and didn’t let on that the parking was not to her liking. Even when the scheduled opening of the doors was delayed 15 minutes and then another 15 minutes, no one seemed the least bit bothered. Only problem was that brunch (Fresh seasonal fruit and berries with crème Chantilly and selection of croissants and bakers with apricot and grand Marnier butter, brisket hash with poached egg and hollandaise sauce and chicken crepes and asparagus and macaroons, assorted truffles and tres leches petit fours) was now moving into the “noon lunch” territory. But again — nobody seemed to care.

Heads and tails

Heads and tails

Once in the ballroom, there was a mini-version of “heads and tails” that had proved so successful back in March was tried again. Only this time there were lots of heads and tails. OK let’s get our calculators out for this one. If 300 guests put up $20 per person to play and the payout was $1,000, that means Heroes for Children took in a cool $5,000 within five minutes.

And the tally for the day?

  • The largest attendance of 600 guests ever for Heroes and Handbags.
  • The silent auction of 280 homebound handbags earned $93,000.
  • The net total for the day that started off with a traffic jam — $326,000.

Ooh, la la!

RECESS!

Kate Rose Marquez and Julie Bagley were at Taco Diner when they came up with an idea to raise money for the Dallas AfterSchool Network.

Kate Rose Marquez, Faye Briggs and Julie Bagley

Kate Rose Marquez, Faye Briggs and Julie Bagley

The pair wanted to develop a new fundraiser—something that would be fun and unique. The result of their brainstorm: a debut event called Recess!, held April 19 at the beautiful estate of philanthropist Faye Briggs.

Event Co-chairs Kate Rose and Julie—who sits on the DASN board—said Recess! was intended to celebrate “all the fun parts of school,” including games and food. The DASN also is about fun, aiming to improve the quality of free afterschool and summer programs by providing staff training, curriculum, volunteers and other program resources.

Recess! was unique and fun, indeed. Tables in Faye’s sprawling backyard were groaning with “for-sale” educational toys donated by The Toy Maven. There was a casino, plus plenty of adult beverages. A “cafeteria” offered comfort food like gourmet grilled-cheese sandwiches with tomato soup, chicken pot pie, tater tots and sliders.

Sandbox

Sandbox

Julie and Kate rose even cooked up a new kind of treasure hunt, burying 100 coins in an actual sandbox. Partygoers paid $25 for one scoop of sand from the box, or $100 for five scoops. If they dug up one of 25 lucky, marked coins with their scoops, they won prizes including an Apple iPad, a Harry Winston coffeetable book or a $1,000 gift card from Ralph Lauren.

Kristy Robinson, Forest Hoglund, Kelly Compton and Sally Hoglund

Kristy Robinson, Forrest Hoglund, Kelly Compton and Sally Hoglund

Among the more than 200 guests at the event were Honorary Chairs Sally and Forrest Hoglund; their daughters Kelly Compton and Kristy Robinson; and Lynn McBee, whose husband Allan McBee was MIA due to spending the day helping his pal Trammell S. Crow prepare for Earth Day Dallas.

By 10:30 p.m., when the casino and the bars had closed and the raffle winners were announced, Julie and Kate Rose could report that more than $100,000 had been netted for DASN’s 140-plus locations serving 11,000 children.

Not bad for something that started with a meeting-of-the-minds at Taco Diner.

MySweetCharity Opportunity: 2013 Recess

Julie Bagley*

According to 2013 Recess Co-chair Julie Bagley:

“Recess, Spring of 2013, in a private home, benefiting The Dallas After School Network. This is a first-time event for a tremendous charity that supports over 12,000 children who attend after-school programs in the Dallas Area. In fact, this is a scoop for you, as we have not even officially announced this event yet!

“DASN provides training in education, arts, and safety for local programs including LeTot, Trinity River Mission and Vickery Meadow Learning Center. DASN was founded to create a consistent, accredited and safe environment for the tens of thousands of children in Dallas who require after-school care.

“This first-time event will be a fun, no-jacket required evening centered around everyone’s favorite part of the school day – Recess! It will be limited to 250 people. We are thrilled to announce we already have two major sponsors. But, would LOVE to share more about this event with MORE sponsors!!!”

* Photo provided by Recess