Meeting and Greeting

As the sun was setting on a recent Sunday, social light was cast on a set of young ladies and their hosts, all bachelors. The Founders’ Room of the New Orleans Country Club was the site for the mingling that was billed Bachelors’ Club Summer Cocktail Party. Club members made rounds as they welcomed a number of this season’s debutantes.

Founded in 1939, the Bachelors’ Club holds an annual presentation. This year, the 76th one will occur on the eve of Thanksgiving in the New Orleans Hilton Riverside.

At the country club, and to initiate the formalities, Bachelors’ Club President Cooper Johnston introduced the officers of the young men’s club and then welcomed the debutantes and their families. Answering to officers, along with Cooper, are Vice Presidents Patrick Caliva (entertainment), Robert Riess Jr. (membership) and Henry St. Paul IV (publicity). Also, Treasurer Patrick Kiernan, Secretary Conor Lutkewitte, and Jake Weinstock and Trevor Thompson, respective historian and sergeant at arms.

Among the attendees were a brace of former BC presidents in Howard Thompson, the master of ceremonies for the presentation and the father of club member Trevor and a recent debutante, Katherine Larson Thompson (who reigned as the queen of Harlequins in her college freshman year), and Harlan Schwartz, immediate past president.

As always, there are club connections with siblings. Noted at the cocktail partying were Joe Martin and sister Sarah, Dr. Michael Tufton and sister Meredith, George Williamson and sister Grace, and a godfather-uncle combination in Mitch Provosty and Coco Guillot.

Still others were Claire Adams, Ara Ellison, Aimee Lapeyre, Leslie McConnell, Alison Mikes, Sedley Clark, Ashley Pou, Adley Schmid, Isabelle Shall and Torre Sossaman.

All the while, Bachelors and their guests moseyed over to the food tables, where turtle soup, chicken and manchego quesadillas, chicken flautas and Peking duck crepes entreated the appetite. For the aural excitement, the New Orleans Banjos + 2 purveyed spirited tunes.

  • Kickoff Camaraderie

As with the above Bachelors’ Club and its Thanksgiving eve presentation, the major socializing of the American Cancer Society’s Belles & Beaus Ball will not be until later: Sept. 25 at Mardi Gras World. However, to get the ball rolling, a kickoff event and Announcement Party unfolded on the third floor of The Shops at Canal Place. Enthusiasm, recognition and a good time all fused. Add to those attributes a most worthy cause. The party was, according to the hosting force, “a perfect way… to support ACS in its mission to save lives and create more birthdays by helping people stay well, get well, find cures and fight back.”

More than 250 people turned out for the complimentary event to hear the announcement of this year’s Belles and Beaus and to anticipate the ball next month.

Decorations were summer simple with balloons for added buoyancy and a disco banner that suggested the theme. The high-top tables were covered with white napery, as were the service tables that held the food, ACS material and information, and auction items. Spinning mini disco balls surrounded by colorful accents were the centerpieces. To feed the flock, Langenstein’s served shrimp and orzo pasta, and Morton’s, pork sliders. Musical noteworthiness came from DJ Kenny Martinez, whose ’70s disco sounds were a hit.

Headliners included Announcement Party Chairwoman Allison Shapiro, Belles & Beaus Chairwoman Dr. Kate Sullivan and Jen Hale, of Fox 8. Also, 2015’s 20 Belles & Beaus. Hailed as women were Melissa Gibbs, Dr. Mara Haseltine, Martine Chaisson Linares, Lillian O’Cain, Katherine Raymond, Dr. Nicole Rogers, Dr. A. Rhett Sassard, Angela Tillman, Elizabeth Williams and Carol Starr. The men were Kyle Brechtel, Tommy Cvitanovich, Troy Duhon, Tim Francis, Dr. Paul Friedlander, Bob McMyne, Mickey Parenton, Alvin Richard, Bobby Talbot, and Jimmie Woods.

They rubbed shoulders with ACS staff members Kate Kelley, senior manager; Mary-Martin France, development manager; and coordinator Natalie Legendre. Also, Kelli Rowers and Pam Verdung.

Disco days recalled John Travolta and his dance-floor turns in “Saturday Night Fever.” A life-size cut-out of him in his white suit and famous “Fever” pose provided the Travolta Toss. For $20 and with three chances, guests threw rings around his extended finger to win tickets to the Sept. 25 gala. Disco icon models styled by ALG (which, among other things, does wardrobe styling) and in modern disco outfits courtesy of Saks Fifth Avenue represented famous women from the thematic era. Joining the kickoff caper were (the likes of) Farrah Fawcett, Bianca Jagger, Elvira Hancock, Diane von Furstenberg and Pam Grier.

Immediately following the hobnobbing, the celebration continued across the street at Tiki Tolteca, the upstairs bar of Felipe’s, thanks to HEROfarm marketing and public relations. The company’s Reid Stone, Shaun Walker and Jason Taix held out welcoming hands as both hosts and B&B ball committee members.

n Around and About

Single status has been exchanged for that of marital union for a number of Orleanians. Well wishes have abounded.

Among them have been Callie Ann Foreman, daughter of Houstonians Mr. and Mrs. James Edward Foreman, and George Andrews Gaines, son of Mr. and Mrs. Howard Clark Gaines, whose nuptials were in Houston but who were honored at a later party given by his parents at Arnaud’s.

And Mary Abigail Zanone and Jonathan Matthew Suquet, whose parents are Dr. and Mrs. Michael Timothy Zanone and Mr. and Mrs. Jose Suarez Suquet, who swapped vows at a nuptial Mass at St. Francis of Assisi Church and then were feted at a stunning reception at the New Orleans Country Club with “Abby and Jon” souvenir sunglasses. And Kaitlin Crabtree, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Donald Scott Crabtree, and James Rodgers II, son of Mr. and Mrs. James Stewart Rodgers, whose wedding was at St. Charles Avenue Presbyterian Church, followed by a reception at Arnaud’s, where the bride works. Dancing in all cases was joyful.