Witte Museum Hosts 52nd Annual Witte Game Dinner

By Jake Gaines Photography by Trisha Lindsey Photography and Parish Photography

THE SETTING: More than 850 of San Antonio’s community leaders and philanthropists, dressed in their finest western attire, gathered to enthusiastically support the Witte Museum at the 52nd Annual Witte Game Dinner, presented by Embrey. The event’s theme, A Prickly Pear Affair, reflected a bountiful return, represented by the sumptuous pear of the cactus, from the prickly period of the pandemic. And it was a bountiful evening indeed, with an abundance of delicious South Texas game cuisine by The RK Group, cocktails, and spirited conversation.

THE STYLE: Attendees entered through the Valero Great Hall at the Witte Museum, adorned with cacti and bathed in hues of pink and green, where they had photos taken and socialized with friends during a cocktail hour that filled the museum campus. As they sipped on prickly pear margaritas, available throughout the galleries, the attendees re-connected with friends and enjoyed passed hors d’oeuvres and the famous Gordita stations to whet their appetites for what was to come.

The celebration continued to the Mays Family Center for the main event. Susan Naylor, The Feik Family Foundation, and SWBC were honored with Texas Heritage awards for their transformational support of the Witte Museum and visionary leadership in the city and across the state of Texas, as attendees enjoyed a multi-course meal including chicken fried quail, venison enchiladas and bison sliders. A robust live auction followed, with guests enthusiastically bidding before Cory Morrow provided the live music as the event’s revelry continued into the night.

THE PURPOSE: The event, chaired by Margaret and Ryan Pape and supported by a superstar committee, is the Witte Museum’s largest annual fundraiser, providing funding for the museum’s education programs, operations and exhibitions. SWBC announced a significant gift to underwrite the Land Stewardship Ambassador program, and other funds raised will support the Witte’s efforts to care for irreplaceable collections, advance new research and help ensure nearly 350,000 school-aged children and their families can experience all the museum has to offer, both in person and remotely.



Chrysanthemum Ball Celebrates With 67th Gala

By Alexandra Del Lago Photography by Jenna Beth Lyde

THE SETTING: The Charity Ball Association of San Antonio celebrated its 67th Chrysanthemum Ball at the Witte Museum. The evening was inspired by the idea of a Tuscan Italian evening by President Lee Anne Hendry. It was designed by Danny Cuellar of Trinity Flowers and Decorations Vice President Elizabeth Roberts. Guests were greeted by large ornate wrought iron candelabras lavishly ornamented in lemon leaves, and a beautiful Italian fountain adorned with a profusion of orchids and chrysanthemums, assorted greenery, and topped with a pyramid of lemons. The guests were offered Limoncello martinis and spritzers, roasted grape and goat cheese bruschetta, mozzarella, smoked chicken arancini, and vegetable stromboli roulades, all while enjoying cocktails in the garden and admiring the Gold Prize Jaguar generously donated by Cavender Jaguar Land Rover.


THE STYLE: As the guests entered the Mays Family Center, they were delighted by the beautiful décor.  Large trees sat upon the dining tables and were decorated with bright yellow lemons, lemon leaves, and sparkling lighting. At the tree bases were arrangements of white cymbidium orchids, yellow and citrine-colored chrysanthemums, yellow roses, and assorted greenery. The tables were adorned with green malachite-patterned tablecloths accented with varying height tapered candles and accompanied by gold Chivari chairs. The ceiling was covered in beautiful lemon leaf greenery accented with ambient lighting. 


Stephen Cavender, this year’s emcee, welcomed everyone and introduced Lee Anne Hendry, the organization’s president. Kim Peacock, the vice president of prizes, orchestrated the many prize drawings and giveaways as the guests enjoyed a fabulous dinner of Duo Caprese Ensalata, Tenderloin Rosa de Parma, and Amalfi Lemon Delight by The RK Group. A night of dancing followed with music from Blind Date of Austin.


THE PURPOSE: The evening celebrated the $1,200,000 raised for the many grants given to the children of Bexar County. With Patrons Vice President Anna-Laura Block at the helm, The Charity Ball Association celebrated their wonderful patrons, including the Diamond Chrysanthemum Patrons: The Charity Ball Legacy Foundation, Kittie Nelson Ferguson Foundation, Mays Family Foundation, and Mary West and Richard Traylor. The CBA has given over $25 million to the children of Bexar County since 1954.



amfAR’s Two X Two For AIDS And Arts Featuring Special Musical Guest Nile Rodgers

By Rob Giardinelli Photography by Bruno and Kevin Tachman

THE SETTING: The Dallas home of Howard and Cindy Rachofsky was the recent setting for the 23rd annual Two X Two for AIDS and Art. Guests included over 500 of the world’s major art patrons and philanthropists. The evening featured beautiful art, showstopping musical performances, and fundraising that those fortunate enough to be a part of will not soon forget.


THE STYLE: The high black tie crowd featured a dazzling array of custom gowns and tuxedos, which, when added to the art and music on display for the evening, gave partygoers a dazzling artistic trifecta of beauty. The evening began with cocktails courtesy of Tequila Casa Dragones and Belvedere Vodka. While guests sipped on their favorite spirit of choice, they mingled with other partygoers brimming with anticipation at the excitement of the fun evening ahead.


The action then moved to the 7,000-square-foot geodesic dome designed by event producer Todd Fiscus for the main program. As revelers walked into the space, they were entranced by an area, which had been transformed into a 21st-century discothèque…complete with mirrored metals, white bleached wood and brushed brass in shades of chartreuse and burgundy.


Highlights of the program included a delectable multi-course, vegan menu, words from the event’s leaders, and a live auction headlined by Sotheby’s auctioneer Michael Macaulay. Then, the showstopping performances by music legend Nile Rodgers and CHIC, who belted their classic disco tunes, brought the crowd to their feet. The evening was capped off with an after party presented by socialite philanthropist Nancy Rogers, which ensured the fun continued into the wee hours of the morning as revelers danced the night away to the tunes of DJ Lucy Wrubel.


THE PURPOSE: Two X Two, co-hosted by Cindy and Howard Rachofsky and John and Lisa Runyon, raised over $9.4 million for amfAR and the Dallas Museum of Art. Funds raised from the evening went toward essential AIDS research at amfAR and the Contemporary Art Acquisitions Fund at DMA. Over the past 23 years, Two X Two has raised over $113 million for these two organizations.



Dallas Historical Society’s Centennial Gala Honors The Moody Foundation

By Rob Giardinelli Photography by Robert Wythe of Wythe Portrait Studio

THE SETTING: A beautiful fall evening at the Hall of State in Dallas was the recent setting for an evening a century in the making. Over 200 philanthropists, sociables, and community leaders were on hand for the Dallas Historical Society’s Centennial gala for an evening of great food, fantastic conversation, and touching tributes that those fortunate enough to be a part of will not soon forget.


THE STYLE: The black tie crowd began the evening with cocktails in the Hall of State foyer. The Dallas String Quartet provided the perfect sophisticated ambiance as guests sipped their favorite spirits. At the same time, they mingled with other patrons and viewed an assortment of interesting historical artifacts in Dallas’ unique and storied history.


Partygoers then ascended the stairs to the Hall of State’s main level for the program. As the crowd dined on a delectable multi-course meal, they were treated to a series of video testimonials, including one from former President George W. Bush. The highlight of the program was honoring The Moody Foundation, which, over the past 80 years, has awarded 4,900 grants totaling over $2 billion toward the betterment of Texas.


The evening was capped off with a Texas Two Step, where guests could either dance at an after party courtesy of Hunter Sullivan and his band, or be the first to view the large-scale, interactive diorama Texas Liberty Forever: The Table for the Alamo created by artist Tom Feely, currently on display at the Hall of State. The program’s highlight was The Moody Foundation being honored for their over 80 years of service, awarding 4,900 grants totaling over $2 billion toward the betterment of Texas.


THE PURPOSE: The event, co-chaired by Kristen Sanger and Lisa Singleton, raised funds for the Dallas Historical Society. Proceeds from the event will go towards the collection, preservation, and exhibition of more than three million unique artifacts that showcase the unique history of Dallas and Texas.



Darlene’s Vision Fun & Games Luncheon Benefitting Children In Need

By Jake Gaines Photography by Jenna Beth Lyde

THE SETTING: The San Antonio Country Club was recently the setting for the 3rd annual Darlene’s Vision Fun & Games luncheon benefitting children in need in the San Antonio community. Over 200 guests arrived at the festive event to play games such as the cakewalk, bean bag toss, and trivia, as well as to socialize among the floral décor accents of yellow roses and desert blooms.

THE STYLE: Darlene Dorsey was an adoring preschool educator, accomplished businesswoman, encouraging mother, loving grandmother, and adoring great grandmother. It was this preschool teacher’s immense love of children and helping those in need that founder, Carroll Dorsey Walker created a nonprofit entity to keep her mother’s legacy alive. The event’s raffle and silent auction items also helped fund the organization.

THE PURPOSE: The event’s proceeds help children with a toy drive throughout the year at the Women & Children’s Center, Easter egg hunts for children with disabilities, and funding for a special camp for children with cancer. The mission is to honor the memory of Darlene Dorsey by continuing the heartfelt kindness and generosity she showed to children. Dorsey believed our communities are strengthened when children’s lives are enriched in a safe, engaging environment.