A Note from Bev

May 5 is the 2012 Opera Ball and you don’t want to miss it! Thanks to our cover models: President of the New Orleans Opera Association Ted Martin, President of the Women’s Guild New Orleans Opera Association Jean Rice, Opera Ball Chair Yolanda Doucette and hosts Czar and Czarina Ulia and John Houghtaling. Not pictured is one of my favorites, Penny Baumer, Opera Guild’s Fundraising Vice President, who was out of town. They have planned an extraordinary event for you with an exciting Russian-themed ball complete with cocktails, a gourmet seated dinner, live music and pre-ball cocktail entertainment. There is a silent auction, an exciting patron gift and during the event there will be a performance by Russian dancers. The gala will be held at the Houghtaling home from 7 to 12 p.m. Please call 482-7943 for tickets and more information. As you all know, the guild raises money to support the funding of the Grand Opera and opera education in the city.

Mother’s Day is fast approaching, and we have What’s Hot featuring great ideas for your favorite Mom. There is also a real “first” on Magazine Street that will have you dancing up and down on Saturday May 12 – the day before Mother’s Day. I just spoke to Evie Poitevent, owner of Feet First and Event Committee Chairman and board member of the Magazine Street Merchant’s Association. The Association, along with exclusive alcohol sponsor Martin Wine Cellar, is hosting the inaugural Champagne Stroll on Magazine Street. The excitement occurs from 5 to 9 p.m. and all official participating members will be serving complimentary sparkling wine. In addition there will be live music, trunk shows, in-store promotions and some stores will also be offering hors d’oeuvres. To view the official sponsors, or to become one, visit MagazineStreet.com or follow them on Facebook and Twitter. Get your present for Mom and have so much fun doing it!

Our galleries are over the top, and a wonderful friend, Ann Strub, will be featured at Jean Bragg’s Studio located at 600 Julia St. Another friend, Luis Colmenares, and reverse glass artist J. Renee have a show at Gallery Verdiditas, located at 3822 Magazine St., that will run through June. It is called “A Little Old, A Little New.”

It is time again for our Registry of Charitable Events for May through August (deadline for inclusion was April 1). We want all of you to be represented; to see your event in our registry or monthly calendars, fill out the form on the opposite page and fax or mail it, or visit MyNewOrleans.com, click on the “Calendar” button at the top of the page, click on “Submit a Charitable Event” and fill out the form as completely as possible as early as you can.

Speaking of Editor Morgan Packard, this month my entertaining column will give you a glimpse of her incredible wedding to Michael Griffith, which was held in City Park on March 24. Every detail is so exquisite that I had to bring it to you. Of course everyone enjoys checking out Shelby Westfeldt’s column, “Cruisin’ the Crescent.” How does she get to all of those fabulous parties? She takes us with her in a spectacular way; thanks, Shelby!

Because many of you are so generous to so many causes, we wanted to bring to you a special section on Effective Giving. We all learned a lot and wanted to share it with you!
Have a great Zoo-To-Do and Jazz Fest! How lucky we all are to live in this incredible city!

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