LAFAYETTE —- The Cajundome Convention Center was transformed into France’s most-noted city as Krewe of Xanadu members and their guests celebrated “Paris, Ooh La La” at their 23rd annual ball Feb. 8.
The evening was dedicated to Todd Dudley and Irby Simon, and the men and women of the U.S. Armed Forces. The American flag was presented by Dwayne Guidry. Singing the “Star-Spangled Banner” were Carrie Fite Leonard, Leah Fite Sullivan and Lindsay Fite Finely.
Members of the Lafayette-based women’s group represented all things unique to The City of Lights during a tableau that also featured the Xanadu Amusers parading to Mardi Gras tunes and the Xanadudettes performing various musical numbers.
Reigning over the festivities were Queen Xanadu XXIII Maggie Trahan Simar and King Xanadu XXIII Ebbie James Breaux.
Queen Simar, a Family Court hearing officer for the 16th Judicial District, St. Martin Parish, is married to Brannon Todd Simar. They have two children.
King Breaux is general manager of DoCo Industrial Insulators Inc., co-owner of Deano’s South, and owner of E&C Supply LLC. He and his wife, Christy Do Breaux, have two children.
Introduced as captain was Debbie K. Mills, who made her entrance as the Eiffel Tower. A registered pharmacist, she is co-owner of Mills’ Cashway Pharmacy with her husband, state Sen. Fred Mills Jr.
With a backdrop of red, gold, black and white decorations, members of the royal court were introduced as nine Greek muses, each representing something Parisian.
This year’s head muse, Phyllis Boudreaux, Polyhymnia, represented French Perfume, and was escorted by Ronnie Navarro.
A French Artiste from Montmartre was Jeanne Brannon, Thalia, escorted by Wade Brannon.
Leslie Carbo, Melpomene, was a Parisian Lady on the Champs-Elysees, escorted by Kerry Carbo.
Luxembourg Gardens was Rebecca Coody, Urania, escorted by Greg Coody.
Escorted by Ben Hebert, Amy Hebert, Terpsichore, was a Moulin Rouge Can Can Girl.
Representing Notre Dame Cathedral was Amanda Judice, Erato, escorted by Gentry Duhon.
On the arm of escort Neal Olivier, Donna Olivier, Clio, portrayed Parisian High Fashion.
Tammy Simoneaux, Eterpe, represented a French Maid, escorted by Michael Fowler.
Amanda Touchett, Calliope, showed French Lingerie, escorted by Jamie Touchett.
Emcee was Sen. Fred Mills, and music was provided by Louisiana Red.
Messengers for the ball were Cade Simar and Rebecca Simar, children of the queen, and Ethan Breaux and Christian Breaux, children of the king.
Visiting the court were Greater Southwest Louisiana Mardi Gras Association President William Miles Johnson and his wife, Christian Voorhies Johnson, and Lafayette City-Parish President Joey Durel Jr. and his wife, Lynne Durel.