Winter Wonders and Tea Time

The Mid-Winter Cotillion

Messrs. Charles Paul Silvia III and Richmond Colville Jackson, answer in turn to president and vice president of The Mid-Winter Cotillion, the oldest continuing debutante presentation in New Orleans. It was founded in 1840. Present-day pleasures were manifold, thanks to the recent presentation at the New Orleans Country Club with Mr. Thomas Bagwill as master of ceremonies. There, white twinkle lights gave a luminescent sparkle and all-white bouquets with peonies and roses added a floral component. Deacon John and the Ivories played.

Before the appearance of the debutantes, Messrs. Silvia and Jackson toasted them and their parents in the club’s Founder’s Room. During the presentation the officers toasted the debs and the audience.

“When You’re Smiling” was the song for the first presentee, Miss Whitney Caroline Appel, daughter of state Sen. and Mrs. Conrad Henry Appel III. Then came Misses Isabelle Wyndham Marguerite Baugnies de Paul de Saint Marceaux, daughter of Mr. Olivier Baugnies de Paul de Saint Marceaux and Mrs. Eleanor Morehead Baugnies de Paul de Saint Marceaux; Katherine Michelle Bickham, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Mark Andrew Bickham; Elizabeth Lucy Carter, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Glen Stanley Carter (and the 2018 queen of Caliphs of Cairo); Sarah Turner Collins, daughter of Mr. Walter Kendall Collins and Mrs. Angela Coleman Collins; Katherine Sophie Diliberto, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Robert John Diliberto; Emily McQuown Ellison, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. William Charles Ellison; Ann Gordon Finney, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Samuel Wilson Finney; Emily Elizabeth Frischhertz, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Kevin James Frischhertz; Elizabeth Macon Hamrick, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Joseph Thomas Hamrick Jr.; Juliet Carden Kalifeh, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Mitchell Kalifeh III; Riley Marra Kirkpartrick, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Timothy Paul Kirkpatrick; and Madeline Ann Landry, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Michael Dodt Landry.

“Fly Me to the Moon” was the song for Miss Helen Claire Marsh, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Leo Patrick Marsh, who was followed by Misses Sarah Ann McKendrick, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Charles Stuart McKendrick III; Elizabeth Anne Mentz, daughter of Mr. Charles Nicholas Mentz III and Mrs. Jane Faia Mentz; Ashton Elizabeth Politz, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Paul Joseph Politz; Frances Elizabeth Reisman, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. David Latham Reisman; Ashley Elizabeth Sanders, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Robert Craig Sanders; and, to “What a Wonderful World," Michelle Marie Yacoubian, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Alan John Yacoubian. The final,” Thank Heaven for Little Girls,” cued the post group-curtsy dance for the debs and their dads.

Noted, as well, were members of the 2017 Mid-Winter Cotillion: Messrs. Christopher Conway Bellone Jr., Glen Higgins Benjamin, Walker Earling Simmons Bright, Andrew Lawson Chunn, Henry Hadden Creel, Clifford Freret Favrot, Charles Davis Friend, Clayton Cooke Geary, James Howard Gibert III, Louis Marcel Jaubert, Connor James Kirkpatrick, David Merrick Lane Jr., Quentin Evans Marks, Patrick Dargan Macdiarmid, William Connor Nelson, Hugh Bramhall Reily, John Forney Rowan III, Frederick Evans Schmidt Jr., William David Sumrall IV, Alexander Adair Tebo, David Albrecht Terral Jr., Robert Howson Weinmann and William Mitchell Whann.

After the cotillion, there was general dancing to Deacon John, along with sliders, a breakfast buffet and an ice cream bar for late night nibbles. Once again, Mid-Winter fused an evening of formality and fun.

Tea for Two

Balmy and palmy suggested the invitation – in shades of blue, green and teal – that was created by The Stationery Stylist with Cynthia Hayes as the calligrapher. Two hatted lasses were depicted sipping tea. Above was the lettering “Mrs. Leo Marsh and Mrs. Alan Yacoubian request the pleasure of your company at a The Dansant honoring their daughters Helen Claire Marsh and Michelle Marie Yacoubian.” Ladies gathered at the Orleans Club at 3 p.m. After 5 o’clock, gentlemen were invited.

In keeping with the theme, Fat Cat Flowers displayed posies in tea pots and tea cups belonging to the family. The tea service belonged to Mrs. Robert Fabacher. Used, too, to suggest the Palm Court in New York’s Plaza Hotel, were several palm trees. More features were lively sounds by the Kyle Roussel quartet, the Orleans Club’s delicious purveyance, Wine Seller beverages, Sucre’s macaroon trees, and Joan Farrell cookies passed by gloved tea girls Margo McPherson, Evy Lauscha, Elise Claire Palmisano and Georgia Palmisano. Smiling were their mothers, Betsy McPherson, Jennifer Lauscha and Vivien Palmisano.

Joining the Marshes were a Robbert sixsome, Al and Birgit, John and Jane, Randy and daughter Suzanne, as well as Louise and Red Huete, Lisette and James Fabacher, Victor Andrews, Harold and Diane McPherson, Tricia France, Joyce Delery, and Germaine and Bob Vorhoff. Several came in from out of town.

Alex Yacoubian, brother of honoree Michelle "Mimi," joined the festivity, as did grandparents Charles and Patricia Mann and Violette Yacoubian. Also, Gary and Silvia Yacoubian, Denise Thornton, Robert and Nadia Haik, Judge Joy Cossich Lobrano with children Mae and Nick, Meg Darre, and Marli Davis with daughter Lane-Larkin. Party favors were small jars of honey from St. Joseph Abbey in Covington.

“Helen and Mimi were on Cloud Nine,” said Leslie Marsh after the brew-tiful event. “They were surrounded by special friends and family, who celebrated the two of them.”

More Tea Times

Mid-Winter debutantes Sarah Collins and Frances Reisman were honored, respectively, by their mothers at teas. Sarah’s was at the University Section home of Gigi Dabezies, where a host of young ladies and their mothers, such as relatives, Susu and Eugenie Stall, mingled for hours, enjoying the home’s holiday décor and dining-room spread.

At the Reisman residence in Old Metairie, hostess LuLu greeted her many guests, including Mary Melito, Laurie Gaudet, Malia LeBon, Mignon Kohnke, Peggy Whitener, Dunbar Amoss, Reecee Lanier, Helen Marsh, Carrie Christman and scores more. They sipped teas of their choice – Ceylon Orange Pekoe by Twinings was a favorite – and made tracks to Michael’s Catering for finger sandwiches, fruit pastries and scones. Macaroons and Ferrero Rocher candy were sweet treats.

Ring in the New Year

Midday revels at Antoine’s, “Cocktails and Cowbells,” in honor of Miss Emily Elizabeth Frischhertz, another Mid-Winter presentee, rallied guests to Antoine’s restaurant. Thanked were the hosting couples Dr. and Mrs. Chuck Cucchiara and Mr. and Mrs. James Wilbert.