The Texas Biomedical Forum Celebrates With Annual Gala


By Jake Gaines      Photography by Katie Clementson of Billo Smith Photography

THE SCENE: Nearly 500 guests attended The Texas Biomedical Forum’s 51st annual gala, The Enchantment of Spring, at The Argyle. A harpist played to welcome guests into the party as hors d’oeuvres and chilled towels were passed on silver trays to offset the heat, as guests made their way to the nearest bars for refreshments.  


THE STYLE: A shining star of the evening was the Ribbon Pull, an interactive and fundraising concept that was conceptualized by the gala team. Guests purchased the chance to pull a satin ribbon hanging from a beautiful tree to reveal a prize. The grand prize of the Ribbon Pull was a pair of diamond earrings donated by Kelly Wade Jewelers. Guests also perused and purchased tickets for the raffle packages.  


Guests then enjoyed a seated dinner that featured a decadent menu prepared by The Argyle, celebrating the abundance and gifts of springtime. Dinner began with a spring pea soup with cranberry coulis, followed by a salad duo of quinoa and chickpeas and a cucumber wrap bouquet. Next was the entrée consisting of a Pepper Bomb New York Strip with Béarnaise sauce, pesto potatoes, green bean and carrot vegetable bundle, and tomato provençal. The dessert of a lemon blueberry mascarpone dome with gold leaf capped off the delicious meal. Then, the Drywater Band entertained guests at the after party in the gorgeously appointed tent while Maverick Bourbon whiskey poured tastings at a table on the lawn. Additionally, three artists from Vogue Vignette of Austin were on-site sketching portraits of couples. Barbara Shorts, Verve Event Planning’s founding president, helped coordinate the gala’s festivities.


THE PURPOSE: Rebecca Nathan was this year’s gala chair, with Audra Kerr serving as co-chair and Amelita Mauzé as this year’s Forum’s president. The purpose of the Texas Biomedical Forum is to support the Texas Biomedical Research Institute through community relations, volunteer services, and fundraising. This funding has allowed researchers to apply for additional grant monies in excess of $75 million in subsequent awards for large-scale research projects, which equates to approximately twenty-three dollars in return for every dollar of Forum grants. The gala team is incredibly grateful to Lee Michaels Fine Jewelry for kindly donating all the crystal party favors that were hand-delivered by the gala team to every attendee in the days leading up to the event. 



San Antonio Symphony League Hosts Princess Grace-Inspired Gala


By Jake Gaines          Photography by Oh Tannenbaum Photography and Overstreet Photography

THE SETTING: The San Antonio Symphony League recently celebrated its 51st annual Symphony Ball with the theme, Le Bal de la Rose, inspired by the annual Monaco fête created by Princess Grace in 1954. The League presented this year’s class of elegant Symphony Belles at the JW Marriott San Antonio Hill Country Resort & Spa amongst a ballroom full of lush floral arrangements with pink and white roses reminiscent of times past.


THE STYLE: In keeping with tradition, the Belles donned white gowns as they were presented to their guests by their fathers, brothers, and grandfathers. Following the formal presentation, partygoers enjoyed a scrumptious meal and then danced the night away making memories to last a lifetime. The floral décor was provided through a partnership between Danny Cuellar of Trinity Flowers and William Garza of Uptown Floral. The resplendent display of magenta, pink, coral, and white roses with white hydrangeas adorned with lighter purple flowers, created an evening as if in an old-world European garden. Guests enjoyed the evening’s fête with a performance by the Youth Orchestras of San Antonio during the cocktail hour, a special performance by Agarita during the program, and after-dinner dancing to the sounds of the band, Finding Friday.


THE PURPOSE: Katie Kinder DeBauche and Dan DeBauche, the 2022 Symphony Ball chairs, created an evening to remember for each Belle and her family. DeBauche was a former Symphony Belle and remembers her time fondly. For nearly half a century, the San Antonio Symphony League has proudly presented at a formal ball young ladies who are the children and grandchildren of League members. During all four years of high school, Belles earn volunteer service hours through various League events. One hundred percent of the annual contributions made to the Belle Program are in turn donated to the San Antonio Symphony League to support classical music and music education programs in the city. Although the Symphony itself has recently closed, the Symphony League’s Belle program will contribute $100,000 this year to the Musicians of the San Antonio Symphony (MOSAS) for their community concerts.



San Antonio Doseum Celebrates 7th Annual Birthday Bash With Circus Theme

By Jake Gaines Photography by Vanessa Velazquez

THE SETTING: Planning any event requires a true ringleader, yet The DoSeum’s 7th Annual Birthday Bash fully embraced the big top lifestyle. The seven-ring circus-themed event was the museum’s first gala held in person at The DoSeum since 2019 and welcomed over 350 guests seated at tables placed throughout the museum’s galleries. Patrons unleashed their inner party animal alongside VIP guests from The San Antonio Zoo. During cocktail hour, attendees enjoyed elevated carnival cuisine and afterward danced the night away in support of childhood education.


THE STYLE: Acrobats, fire artists, and amazing animals helped guests celebrate at this chic circus. Supporters who attended the gala savored carnival fair favorites of hamburgers, corn dogs, and smoked turkey kebabs provided by The RK Group. Paired with the evening’s meal was the event’s signature drink, Pink Elephants, a refreshing cocktail blending vodka, pink lemonade, and lime. Illusions and Caplan Miller Events provided the evening’s big top decor. Guests competed in classic games, including Plinko and Ring Toss, for a chance to win generous prizes donated by Saks Fifth Avenue and Bohanan’s Prime Steak and Seafood.


THE PURPOSE: Co-chairs and education advocates Adrianna Grossman and Ashley Quintanilla raised over $400,000 to support The DoSeum’s mission of equitable, joyful, hands-on learning for all. The DoSeum is a socio-emotional learning laboratory and a resource for caregivers and educators alike. Its current focus is supporting childhood education recovery after two years of interruptions and modifications. During his remarks, DoSeum CEO Dan Menelly shared, “It is critical community leaders and childhood education advocates come together and direct our attention to ensuring every learner maintains access to equitable, experiential learning resources like those found at The DoSeum. We continue to center conversations around the invisible learner, our role in shaping the future of childhood education, and cultivating both a STEM identity among children and a museum identity for caregivers. Thanks to your support, children are rediscovering the social dimensions of learning.”


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Briscoe Western Art Museum Presents Annual Sale And Exhibition


By Jake Gaines    Photography by Mark Humphries Photography and Sun Gold Photography

THE SETTING: Each year, the Briscoe Western Art Museum draws art enthusiasts, collectors, and visitors for an opportunity to view and purchase nearly 300 works of painting, sculpture, and mixed media from 75 of the country’s leading contemporary western artists. This year was no different as The Night of Artists event and weekend of festivities were hosted on the banks of the iconic San Antonio River Walk. Attendees were also able to enjoy panel discussions exploring the emerging western art market and trends.


THE STYLE: The wide range of artworks and artist genres reflects the vastness of the great American West. From scenic landscapes, inspired Native Americans, and classic cowboys to stunning wildlife and detailed portraiture, there is something for every attendee and art enthusiast to enjoy. Some of the featured artists included Martin Grelle, George Hallmark, Z.S. Liang, Kenny McKenna, Jan Mapes, Don Oelze, Gladys Rolden de Moras, Paul Rhymer, Stefan Savides, Billy Schenck, Michael Ome Untiedt, Kim Wiggins, and Xiang Zhang.


The opening weekend included a Collectors Summit panel discussion, a VIP preview and a live auction on Friday. The live auction drew art sales of more than $551,000. Then, on Saturday, the fun continued with the Collectors Summit, a trunk show with Clint Orms, the Artists Awards Luncheon, and the opening of the Night of Artists Exhibition and “Luck of the Draw” sale. Delicious food stations, libations, and live music under the stars rounded out the night. The museum’s public exhibition continued with all unsold artwork available for purchase.


THE PURPOSE: The Night of Artists is the largest fundraiser for the Briscoe Western Art Museum, and this year raised $1.9 million, with the proceeds benefitting the museum. The Briscoe Western Art Museum is a collections-based institution building upon art and artifacts that tell the vast and multifaceted story of the American West.


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McNay Art Museum Gala Dining With The Masters Returns After Two-Year Hiatus


By Rob Giardinelli     Photography by David Sixt Photography

THE SETTING: The McNay Art Museum’s gala, Dining with the Masters: Georgia O’Keeffe and American Modernism welcomed 200 friends and supporters returning to the museum for a gala after a two-year hiatus due to the pandemic.


The elegant evening unveiled an exclusive preview of Georgia O’Keeffe and American Modernism, a focus exhibition that brings together masterpieces from the McNay’s collection–including Evening Star No. 5 and From the Plains I–with key loans from the Whitney Museum of American Art and sister institutions within and beyond Texas. The exhibition is the first substantial presentation of O’Keeffe’s work at the McNay since the landmark O’Keeffe and Texas in 1998. The masterful exhibit featuring artworks by O’Keeffe’s contemporaries, including Marsden Hartley, Yasuo Kuniyoshi, and Helen Torr, presents an innovative, inclusive celebration befitting the first modern art museum in Texas.


THE STYLE: The Leeper Auditorium was stunning with the color palette looking as if it came directly from an O’Keeffe painting. David Garcia and his team from Statue of Design created stunning centerpieces and floral chandeliers that floated above guest’s tables. Don Strange of Texas treated guests to a sumptuous dinner. Many of the recipes for the evening came directly from Georgia O’Keeffe’s kitchen, including the pecan butterball cookies, which were given to guests as they departed. After dinner, guests made their way to the AT&T Lobby for dessert and music by DJ Despeinada.


THE PURPOSE: The mother and daughter duo, Betty Lou Sheerin and Kate Sheerin, chaired the gala, the museum’s largest annual fundraiser. The title sponsors were Neiman Marcus San Antonio and Valero. Proceeds from the gala benefit the McNay’s education, exhibition, and conservation programs, enabling the museum to continue its mission of engaging a diverse community in the discovery and enjoyment of the visual arts.

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San Antonio Gardenia Club Luncheon Celebrates Fashion And Fine Arts

By Jake Gaines                     Photography by Jenna-Beth Lyde

THE SETTING: Recently, at the Argyle Club, a glorious luncheon and style show unfolded on a sunny afternoon celebrating a Splendour On The Lawn theme. The event’s top-tier table attendees were initially welcomed at a VIP pre-party in the Champagne Room to kick off the afternoon of fun ahead.   


 THE STYLE: Attendees mingled in anticipation of the main event, the annual fashion show, a sensational runway of this season’s best fashions. Presented by Julian Gold and produced by Emily McMichael of R World Productions, the summery styles presented something for everyone, from pretty sundresses to resort wear and beyond. Serving as event emcee was past Gardenia Club President Siobhain Buckley, while the 2020-2022 Gardenia Club President Laura Humphries offered the group’s appreciation to its members, volunteers, and guests. The event-goers applauded a special performance by Melissa Gonzalez, representing The Woodlawn Theater & Woodlawn Academy. Also, a fine arts recognition donation was made to the Ballet Conservatory of South Texas on behalf of the Gardenia Club.


THE PURPOSE: The event was co-chaired by Sharron Batchelor and Christi Tidwell, who announced the fortunate silent auction and door prizes winners. The San Antonio Gardenia Club was founded in 1960 with the mission of providing fine arts scholarships to students within the San Antonio area. The club also participates in the annual Fiesta Battle of Flowers, Texas Cavaliers River Parade, and the Annual Holiday Parade.

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