Key to the Cure at Saks Fifth Avenue amassed hundreds to benefit the Louisiana Cancer Research Center; paces away, but on a different date, the board of directors and administration of Ozanam Inn held its 34th annual Century Club Gala, “Rollin’ on the River,” at The Crazy Lobster Bar & Grill (by the Mississippi River at Spanish Plaza); and heading Uptown, and along the river, Broadway beckoned, both as title and location when the Lambeth House Foundation presented “Sweet 16 on Broadway.” In each case, music added to the social momentum.

  • ‘Key’-Notes!

Mary Cunningham, Brenda Badon, Darlene Mitchell, Carol Tompkins, Clifton Webb, Jim Mounger, Tommy Nocero, Donna Kay Berger, Olga and Philip Riegel (who often answers to his middle name, Richard), Dr. Ed and Janice Foulks, Alison Diboll, Anne Honeywell, Sammy Steele and scores more coursed the three floors of the Saks-travaganza that kicks off the Charity Shopping weekend to raise funds and awareness for the Louisiana Cancer Research Center.

Renee Gabriel and in absentia Sara B. Stone were the honorary Key to the Cure 2014 chairwomen, while the chairing consortium included Saks general manager and Vice President Carolyn Elder, Therese Badon, Leslie Gottsegen, and Amanda Herman attending with husband Fred. That distaff foursome sported some glamorous looks with Carolyn wearing a Lida Baday design; Therese, Dolce & Gabbana; Leslie, Roberto Cavalli; and Amanda, Babette. Sue Singer was the corporate liaison.

Mastheading the merry munificence, too, were the Fabulous Under Forty quartet of Laura Avery, Colette Iteld, Charlotte Jane Sawyer, and Meaghan Ryan Bonavita, daughter of former “Key” chairwoman Pam Ryan, and joined by Joe. She rocked a bright coral-red Herve Leger dress.

Still others making the gala go were entertainment Chairwomen Sandra Pulitzer with Arthur; Saks marketing executive Steven Putt, additional executives Larry Dauterive, Charles Leininger, Colleen Bolling, and Denise Trahant; LCRC representatives Dr. Prescott Deininger with Celia, and Dr. Augusto Ochoa; Diane Franco and Fred Holley representing the Goldring Family Foundation and Republic National Distributing Company; and, sponsoring the Chanel Ready to Wear Department, Sheila and H. Britton Sanderford with daughter Shelby. On Feb. 27, Shelby reigned as queen at the 75th anniversary Grand Ball of the Krewe of Hermes.

As the 1,000-plus guests moved about on the store’s three floors, they enjoyed supper-by-the-bite from more than 27 fine eateries, libations, and music (on each level), thanks to the Cuban Buena Vista Social Club Doppelgangers, Llowen Drum Set, Kermit Ruffins Band, and Evan Christopher Trio. Atmospheric lighting in tones of pink, amber and turquoise embellished the store’s modern architecture.

Along with spouse Cheryl, Mayor Mitch Landrieu joined the “Cure” crowd, as did Louellen and Darryl Berger with son Brandon and daughter-in-law Daphne, Carla and Jay Adams, Toni Bachmann, Jane Casbarian, Jackie Clarkson, Leonard Davis, Virginia and John Eckholdt, Ana and Dr. Juan Gershanik, Susan and Jimmy Gundlach, Kim Glazer and John Thetford, Judge Karen and Steve Herman, Betty Kohn, Linda and Gordon Kolb, Steve Lane, Bob Merrick, Aaron Miscenich, Roger Ogden, Sally Richards, the above Pam Ryan with Bill, Drs. Sissy and Oliver Sartor, Kim and Mike Sport, Mary Vega and Cesar Martino, Marjorie and Dr. Roy Weiner, Joan and Dr. Larry Zaslow, and Betty and Jim Karam (who, a few days later, joined close friends to wish Natasha Ramer a happy birthday. Husband Sam Ramer was beaming.)

When all was said, socialized and shopped, the tally came in. More than $150,000 will be directed to the Louisiana Cancer Research Center. “Cure” was to the fore.

n Rollin’ on the River

Ozanam Inn’s Century Club Gala at The Crazy Lobster Bar & Grill hailed AJ and Anna Tusa as the honorary chaircouple, and as 2024 gala Chairwoman Renee Borie Blanche. Alexandra Cranford, WWL-TV meteorologist, was the mistress of ceremonies. Further notables were Frank and Paulette Stewart, Kevin and Nancy Colomb, Councilwoman LaToya Cantrell, Stacy and Thomas Koch, Leslie and Society of St. Vincent de Paul President Michael Champagne (Ozanam Inn “is a Special Work of the Society of St. Vincent de Paul”), Erin Shea-Stahnke, Kathleen “Kappa” Horn, Dr. and Mrs. T.J. Borgman, the Don Englers, Clyde Raymond and Claudette Callahan, and the Gary Vincents.

Features of the “Rollin’” revelry ran from soup to Nuts. The menu by the host venue and Carnival Culinary Solutions consisted of a variety of Louisiana specialties such as gumbo, and the musical one was by the band, Mixed Nuts. A silent auction with 70-plus items, a Restaurant Raffle (10 restaurants each provided a $100 gift certificate for a $1,000 value), delightful décor by Southern Belle Events, and photos by Frank Aymami of Eye Creative Photographers made the party scene swing.

More headliners included Ozanam Inn board President Fred Kirchgraber with Karen, and board members Ron Cambias with his entire family, David Daigle with Lee, Robert Barbier with Carol, Paul Claudel with Marion, Leon Connelly with Jocelyn, Robert Pedesco III, and Claiborne Perrilliat (another recent birthday boy) and Jeanie. Also, Angela and James Wattler and lots of others, who felt the gratification of helping Ozanam Inn (“Serving the Homeless Since 1955”) and the enjoyment of a “roll” on the river.

  • Sixteen Candles

To celebrate its 16 years — nice for a Broadway run! — Lambeth House presented “Sweet 16” at its location on Broadway and the river. Cocktails and Dinner were the party promise, as was dancing to the music of the John Parker Jazz Band. Tim Trapolin designed the invitation in honor of LH CEO Scott Crabtree (present with wife Tammy) and Carter Perrilliat did the layout design. Cocktail attire was the dress.

Gala notables highlighted Co-Chairwomen Robin Benton Crutcher (with Bruce) and Kathy B. Eastman, whose committee included Ellinor Howard (with Doug), Maureen Huguley, LHF board Chairwoman Peggy L. Laborde, Cynthia LeBreton, Lisa Mills, Virginia Walker, and Bush Wrighton. The bash’s Stars, the top donor category, were Jones Walker, KMT Painting and Decorating, LLC, and Whitney Bank.

Whimsy and color combined in the decorations of candy-filled square vases with pink, white and violet balloons; “Sweet 16” napkins and banners; and Skytracker and lighting with a candle-bedecked “cake” done in lighting on the concrete of the plaza.

Two full bars offered champagne and other drinks, chef John Joffe and food and beverage director created a slew of taste treats, and seven generous groups donated to the raffles.

Making their “Broadway” appearance were Sarah and George Young, Donna and Paul Flower, Bob “Bobby” Coyle, Odom Heebe Jr., Bunnie and Dr. Fred Hunter, Gladys LeBreton, Linda Perschall, Billy Shannon, Carol and David Pointer, Jeanne Bruno, Claire and Harry Stahel, and Carolyn and Gary Lorio. They enjoyed their “role” by the river.

n Around and About

Still in the birthday mode! “The Victory 6 immediately played ‘Happy Birthday’ after the loud ‘Surprise!” from the crowd,” said Mary O’Brien Huxen in recapping the fun generated by the natal-day celebration she and husband Keith Huxen staged for her mother, Joan Carollo O’Brien, at the National World War II Museum’s Stage Door Canteen.

It was billed as a “Top-Secret Surprise Party” for Joan’s 80th.

Joining in the fun that included more than 120 guests (who kept the secret) were Hugh and Gail Huxen, Ross and Carmolee Mancuso, William O’Brien, Irma Dearie, Emma Giron, Charlette Carollo, Daniel and Christabel Borrerro, Lucille Brennan, Mary Brennan, and John Hughes. They enjoyed hors d’oeuvres and an extensive buffet, the Debbie Does Doberge cake, the Victory 6 Orchestra with mezzo soprano Megan Dearie performing a few tunes, and the continuous slide show of 125 photos highlighting the birthday girl for whom the happy hoopla was a complete surprise.

Follow this link to the photos.