Everyone of us has been touched by someone who’s had cancer. The fight to eradicate it is ongoing. We are proud to present the American Cancer Society’s 11th annual Hope Gala. Thank you so much to our cover models: Hope Gala chair Melissa Pennebaker, ACS director Tonya Jackson-Ramsey, ACS Executive Leadership councilmember and Hope Gala committee member Lorie Lee, Ochsner Health System President Warner Thomas and Ochsner Health Systems CEO Dr. Patrick Quinlan.

The gala will be held Saturday, August 20 at The Shops at Canal Place. The Patron Party starts at 6:30 p.m. and they’ll feature several of the past chefs of Bravo’s “Top Chef,” New Orleans’ finest restaurants, a live and silent auction, a Champagne and Diamonds raffle and entertainment by the Bucktown All-Stars.

They will also present Spirit Awards to 12 members of the community who have made significant contributions in the fight against cancer. Please call 833-4024 for more information and tickets.

This is our annual wedding issue and it’s amazing! You will be treated to six of the most spectacular local weddings of the year and you’ll get great ideas. It is hard to believe that it’s time to get ready for school, so one of our favorite features, “What’s Hot” concentrates on Back to School with tips and products from beauty to shoes. If that doesn’t satisfy your shopping appetite, check out our special section on Metairie Road for items to dress you from the skin out, as well as linens, a new restaurant and dessert.

I just talked to Dr. Joseph Marino of Lakefront Dental Care and he provides so many services. He is convienently at the corner of Canal and Robert E. Lee boulevards. He does general dentistry, cosmetic fillings and implants; he fixes loose dentures; and he can create a beautiful smile in a friendly atmosphere with the latest technology. He even replaces crowns and veneers on the same day. Call 282-5557 and make your appointment today!

When I recently visited Friend and Co. I learned that they’ve newly purchased a huge estate; I found platinum and diamond earrings for only $1,995! While I was there, two beautiful antique brooches have already sold, but they still have vintage gold bangles, Italian style yellow gold necklaces and much more. You always get great personal service at Friend and Co. whether you’re designing a one-of-a-kind piece or choosing something special for a milestone birthday or anniversary.