Giving Crime a Bye

Presented by Postlethwaite & Netterville, APAC, the 2014 Crimestoppers Ball made costume the come-on. “Heroes & Hooligans Costume Gala” billed the event (which incorporated the Batman logo on the invitation) that thanked Lynne Burkart, Mr. and Mrs. Larry Dyess, and Glenn Orgeron as the chairing force. On the bottom of the invitation, “Help Crimestoppers Catch Criminal” was scripted.

Further features were Eric Paulsen of WWL-TV and Gerry “V” Vaillancourt of WRNO Radio as the masters of ceremonies, silent and live auctions, the costume contest, and live music by The Wise Guys. For those who didn’t don a costume of their favorite hero or villain, dressy casual attire sufficed. But it was so much fun to see sosies of Batman, the Joker, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, Bonnie and Clyde, Batgirl, and Poison Ivy.

Red and black latex balloons and Superhero Mylar Balloons tied to stanchions on the tables — and flanked by Superhero puzzle boxes and toy handcuffs — rated as decorations.

In the above auctions, the 147 items in the silent session thrilled with artwork, clothing, jewelry, trips, staycations, and a private yacht sunset cruise donated by James MacPhaille, while similar fare, all coveted, occurred in the 10 stellar attractions of the oral auction. Susan Coco and Pam Schafer served as auction chairwomen.

Still more excitement came from the 100-plus grab bags containing restaurant gift certificates valued between $25-$100. On-site restaurant treats came from the dozens at the gala that brought out the gourmets and gourmands.

Names to note, and there were scores, started with the late James J. Coleman Sr., 1915-2007, the founding member. The roster moves on with gala principals Les Nettleton, Crimestoppers board chairman; Chairwoman-elect Caryn Rodgers and officers Cynthia Molyneux, the above Pam Schafer, Melvin M. Pechon and Janice Thomas Foulks, past chairwoman; and Crimestoppers President and CEO Darlene Cusanza.

Also, District Attorney Leon Cannizzaro, Jefferson Parish President John Young, Mike Meguerditchian, U.S. Marshal Genny May, NOPD Police Superintendent Michael Harrison, Plaquemines Parish President Billy Nungesser, St. James Parish Sheriff Willy Martin, Kenner Police Chief Randy Smith, Trez and Jim Zotkiewicz, and Crimestoppers Community representative Nick Nuccio.

Within the socializing rosters of legions, there were more than 300 law enforcement members in attendance. Heroes!

Vive le Vieux Carre!

“Champagne, Burgundy, Bordeaux, Rhone” are linked in the oenological lexicon with top wine-producing regions in France. Those regions had another turn at the recent Vieux Carre Property Owners, Residents and Associates event titled “Celebrating our Culinary Cultures.” They were the four sponsorship levels.

In the 2014 Vive le Vieux Carre spirit, and with the concentration on food and its preparation, the gala planners planned hors d’oeuvres, cocktails, a seated dinner and a dessert buffet. (Patrons gathered last night at Marti’s on Dumaine Street for hors d’oeuvres and drinks, as well as a recap of the festivity.)

In vino, there was memory. The one name in the gala’s Champagne sponsor category was that of the late Frank W. Masson. Matilda Gray Stream, who has (and has had) some stupendous homes, including one on Royal Street, enjoyed sole status in the Burgundy division, while Bordeaux saw the names of three couples: Tom Reagan and Tammie Lynn Dixon, Stuart Smith and Barry Cooper Jr., and Jerry Zachary and Henry Bernstein.

Hailed especially throughout the levity was Erin Holmes, who chaired the Fete Committee of Vive le Vieux Carre.

Those in-attendance sponsors mingled with VCPORA executive director Meg Lousteau, board President Carol Allen with Harold Patin, Vice President Jerry Zachary, Tessa Helgerson and Aaron Schwindt, and Kimberly Lancashire and John-Michael Wells. They soaked in the atmosphere of the Old Ursuline Convent, starting in the lovely courtyard, and then sat with about 190 others for dinner. The restaurant donors were Galvez, Brennan’s, Muriel’s on Jackson Square, Dookie Chase, and Andrea’s Restaurant and the various menu courses represented the French Quarter’s diverse cultural heritage. Patrick’s Bar Vin added the bottled effervescence to the gathering in the form of champagne.

Adding the musical ebullience was Sugar Bear and the Jazz Cats.

Still more thrills ensued during the live auction, which featured a trio of prize travel packages. Guests vied with gusto for jaunts to Casa Santa Ana in San Miguel de Allende, Mexico; La Casa Rara in West End Roatan, Honduras; and La Verriere in Castet, Provence, France. Vive le voyage!

View all Nell Nolan: Heroes, hooligans, culinary cultures photos here.