While The Writer’s Garden Reveal Party on Wednesday, June 16, at Donna and Herb Weitzman’s home may have caused a bit of a backup on Lovers Lane with cars trying to drop off guests, the news was not limited to the Women’s Council of the Dallas Arboretum’s fundraiser authors (Bettie Bearden Pardee, Susan Sully and Dr. Bill Welch).
As the flow of guests like Bettina Hennessey, Michelle Mew, Regina Bruce, Terry Irby, Dyann Skelton and Ginger Sager spilled out of the house and into the backyard, Donna was spotted surrounded by a couple of the men in her life — her husband Herb Weitzman and her grandson Clay Earp, who will be attending West Point.
Over on a table near the pool was a collection of Donna’s latest handiwork — “Twisted Retribution,” a murder mystery. As Donna told guests, the story, based on the Henry Lee Lucas murders, was already in the works to be a movie.
She also told of a trip that she and Herb took to Sweden. Walking into a bookstore there, she asked if they had a copy of her book, “Cinderella Has Cellulite.” They did indeed — and promptly pointed her to the Sex aisle.
As guests headed into the house to learn about plans for the Women’s Council fundraiser on Tuesday, November 16, sports-loving Herb was surprised to learn it had just been announced that Mavericks GM Donnie Nelson had parted ways with the team.
Before the afternoon’s program got underway, Reveal Chair Sue John reported that, like many, her travels as well as her social life had been curtailed for the past year due to the pandemic. On the other hand, she found that she had enjoyed the slowdown and just being with husband Phil John.
Seated nearby was Barbara Averitt, who was signing up new members and handing out pens that looked like stems of roses discovered by Writer’s Garden Chair Sandy Ammons. Why, the little bud even smelled like a rose!
In being introduced by Women’s Council President Lisa Loy Laughlin and Sandy to the crowd along with her husband Ben Weber, Writer’s Garden Honorary Co-Chair Marilyn Weber recalled how her relationship with the Arboretum was a second-generation endeavor. Her parents the late Dorothy and Lawrence “Herkie” Herkimer were longtime supporters of the Arboretum. Herkie himself had been the very first Mr. Gatsby of the long-ago Arboretum fundraiser. She told how Gittings had done a portrait photo of the Herkimer family in Gatsby-era attire in the summer heat. Today that portrait hangs in the Weber household.
As a token of their appreciation for the Weitzmans’ hosting the party, Lisa announced that a garden bed at the Arboretum was being named in their honor.
From the side, Herb asked, “Are the flowers annual or perennials?” As guests laughed at the question, one nudged a friend, “That was a nice one.”
But this gathering wasn’t the only one held by the Women’s Council recently. As part of Kay Weeks’ final duties as Women’s Council president, she had hosted the Founder’s Award Silver Anniversary presentation with Arboretum President/CEO Mary Brinegar receiving the honor.