n Stayin’ Alive!
Bring out the glittery disco ball! Dance fever was contagious.
For the 15th annual Belles and Beaus Ball given by the American Cancer Society, would-be Tony Maneros eyed white, John-Travolta suits and busted out the flares for “an evening at the disco with people who care.”
Moving’ and shakin’ to sounds of the Bee Gees, some Donna Summer doppelgangers, and funky games and beverages rallied well over 800 guys and gals to Mardi Gras World for “Stayin’ Alive.”
Put figurative boxing gloves on, too, to “finish the fight against cancer.”
A ’70s theme with disco balls and lava lamps set the stage for the fundraiser that spotlighted Nancy Parker and Glen Boyd as emcees; the Tulane Glee Team, Green Envy, to kick of the evening vocally; and the 610 Stompers for body english. Meanwhile, the party pack made tracks to food and drink provided by more than 60 eateries and drinkeries, including Acme Oyster House, Galatoire’s, Victory, and Creole Creamery.
Then, two hours into the bash, the Belles and Beaus were presented, followed by a live auction. Take a bow, Melissa Gibbs, Dr. Mark Haseline, Martine Chaisson Linares, Lillian O’Cain, Katherine Raymond, Dr. Nicole Rogers, Dr. A. Rhett Sassard, Carol Starr, Angela Tillman, and Elizabeth Williams.
Also, Kyle Brechtel, Tommy Cvitanovich, Troy Duhon, Tim Francis, Dr. Paul Friedlander, Bob McMyne, Mickey Parenton, Alvin Richard, Bobby Talbot and Jimmie Woods.
More names to know, and there were scads involved, were Dr. Kate Sullivan, event chairwoman, Co-Chairman Will Bryant, and members of their 51-person committee, as well as American Cancer Society staff partners Mary-Martin France, manager; Kate Kelley, senior manager; and Natalie Legendre, coordinator.
And Erik and Rebby Frank, David and Jordan Teich, Chris Franklin, Terrance Osborne, Dr. Ali Sageghi, Katie DeVries Kelly, Nicki Candies, Richard C. Colton Jr., and Will Bryant, who’ll chair the Belles & Beaus Ball in 2016.
Back to the ’15 fun and the call to dance. That was rendered by Karma New Orleans, which kept the crowd executing “Night Fever” moves for a good two hours. And then some.
n That’s Amore!
Presented by Regions, LOVE in the Garden took place in the Sydney and Walda Besthoff Sculpture Garden of the New Orleans Museum of Art on a recent Friday evening. According to a party principal, “It was a beautiful night, and the event set records for attendance, ticket sales and sponsorships.”
For a dozen years, LOVE in the Garden has celebrated visual and culinary artists in New Orleans with a fun, festive casual evening offering great food, spirits, and entertainment, all in an al fresco setting. Anchoring the title of the annual to-do is the iconic Robert Indiana LOVE Pop Art sculpture (the letters LO are above those of VE), a version of which is found in the Besthoff garden.
“Love” laurels were extended to Dawn DeDeaux, Tina Freeman, Susan Gisleson, Delaney Martin, Chandra McCormick and Keith Calhoun as the honored 2015 artists. Further brass were the event chaircouples, Robyn and Andrew Schwarz and Margaret and Pierre Villere, and their committee of 92 LOVE-rs. Also, NOMA’s Montine McDaniel Freeman Director Susan M. Taylor and husband Paolo Meozzi, Cathy and Morris Bart, Penny and Al Baumer, Basi and Michael Carbine, Cammie Mayer, Kay McArdlle and Joe Handlin, Penny Francis and daughter Casi, Taylor Morgan, Rodney and Jane Besthoff Steiner, Valerie Besthoff, Lorena O’Neil and Max Vorhoff, Julie and Ted George, and Katherine Westerhold and Max White. Joni Diaz chairs the NOMA Volunteer Committee.
Scores of food stations fortified the “Garden” gallivanters, who then turned their attention to libations. The LOVE Cocktail Challenge featured eight craft cocktails from some of the city’s most celebrated bartenders, who created drinks inspired by a “variation of love.” It could be love/hate, unconditional love, lust or unrequited love. Or another crafted combo.
The participants were Abigail Diedre Gullo, of Compere Lapin; Paul Gustings, Broussard’s; Chris Hannah, French 75; Chris McMillan, Kingfish; T. Cole Newton, Twelve Mile Limit; Kimberly Patton-Bragg, Three Muses; Daniel Victory, Victory; and Steve Yamada, Latitude 29.
Each guest received two “tokens of love” at check-in and voted on their favorite cocktail by dopping their tokens in designated “Love Banks.” The bartender with the biggest Love Bank won.
Huzzahs, Chris Hannah, the first-place winner for the gin-crafted “The Vargas Girl.”
Throughout the evening, entertainment came via Helen Gillet, patron party; Mojeaux, Garden Party; and DJ Jubilee, late night. To ensure that the latter lot had enough stamina for the final round of socializing, a special cuisine was proffered. The popular gastronomy came from Crepes a la Cart, Diva Dawg, Frencheeze, Grilling Shilling, Ironsides Waffles, Lahpet, NOLA Girl Catering and Food Truck, NOLA Snow, and for the drink before driving, coffee (and doughnuts) from Morning Call.
n Landed Gentry
The 3 Point Club of New Orleans presented “An Evening with the New Orleans Pelicans Coach Alvin Gentry,” a meet-greet and buffet dinner at Chateau Golf and Country Club. Salads, chicken Marsala, sliced roast beef, and several desserts made a date with the plate.
Red-circling the date with the new basketball coach were Dr. Lance Turkish for the official welcome, dinner Chairman Larry Palestina, Hank and Beverly Bellows, Barra and Kay Birrcher, John and Maggie Kohl, Loyd and Rita Bagot, David and Sandy Beerbohm, Rick and Kyna Epstein, Ed and Judi Voltolina, Paul Varisco of Team Gleason (Steve Gleason is his son-in-law), Boo and Dorothy Langhoff, Ken and Nancy Prieur, and Evan Turkish. From the New Orleans Pelicans came Matt Ryan, public relations director; Stephen Pate, senior director, community and governmental affairs; and Julie Chaix Borsch, community affairs manager.
The 3 Point Club of New Orleans is a community service organization that supports the Pelicans, the sport of basketball and the Greater New Orleans community. Invited to speak at the dinner were Jennifer Hale, NBA and NFL sideline reporter and anchor with Fox Sports, and Alvin Gentry, New Orleans Pelicans’ head coach. He riveted the audience as he discussed his plans and expectations for the team’s players; “the work ethic of Anthony Davis”; and the announcement of plans to limit Jrue Holiday’s playing time early in the season.
When coach Gentry finished speaking, the audience rose to its collective feet for a hearty ovation.