Yikes! Just yesterday it seems it was college football season; now people are decking the halls. With parties, benefits and assorted events, one does well just to keep the calendar straight.

Oh, but there’s music in the air! The opera and the symphony have had great crowds Uptown; now, musicians are packing up to make the move from
the Tulane University’s Dixon Hall back to the newly-restored Mahalia Jackson Theatre for the Performing Arts with serious gala performances and the promise of glorious music.

As you read this, you’ve made the list, checked it twice (that would be your party, gift and end of year donation list). Even before deadline, people were talking, planning and mapping strategies for events to come.

The W New Orleans, the official hotel of Prospect.1, held a VIP reception the Thursday night before the grand opening. Curator Dan Cameron welcomed artists and enthusiasts with masses of champagne. The opening night dinner, a “tasting” at Antoine’s, had people in costume, black tie and creative variations in-between. Hayden Dunbar, of New York City’s Paul Kasmin Gallery, with wife Paula joined his parents and brother, auctioneer and appraiser Lander. Kitty Sherrill from New York and had her father, former Rex, Brooke Duncan, as her date for the evening. The New York Times Magazine’s Stefano Tonchi, in a velvet smoking jacket, chatted with David Maupin of the Lehmann-Maupin Gallery, who in turn chatted with Jonathan Ferrara, Michael Carbine and John Bullard. Tulane honcho Scott Cowen came as an Ottoman Empire fantasy, while Phyllis Taylor dressed as a witch, on and on.

No one came as a Romanoff but Mimi and Claude Schlesinger could’ve since two weeks later they co-chaired The Odyssey Ball at the New Orleans Museum of Art, a salute the Hodges’ collection of Fabergé in one of the most glamorous, glittering parties – featuring massive candelabra and caviar bars – in years. Fabergé will do that. The D. Lee Hodges family should be everyone’s new best friends.

Ten Plus Ten, (10 gals who invited 10 gals) met at August for a wine, pear-tini and gab-fest. Piranesi’s Ann Williams welcomed Libby Adams, Patrice Clesi, and more. “No pitches; no press kits,” said philanthropic gal-about-town Dana Hansel. “We never get together unless it’s business or a committee meeting, so we thought let’s just have a party.” Over wine, Mary Hines worried about the weather reports for the Hermann-Grima/Gallier Historic Houses gala to be held at her and husband Bill’s home the following Thursday.

Not to worry. A full moon hung in a velvet sky as around 300 gathered at the Hines’ to drink and dine on Ralph Brennan’s extraordinary fare (foie gras, scallops on lentils, sushi and stone crab, buffalo sliders and much more). Everyone you knew or wanted to meet was there in support of the Hermann-Grima/Gallier Historic Houses: Pixie and Jimmy Reiss praised the story on daughter Lady’s wedding in this very magazine last month. Iberia Bank’s Tommy Westervelt gloated about a French tall case clock he scored in the Odyssey’s silent auction nights before. Carlo and Rosemond Capomazzo di Campolattaro told of son Stefano’s engagement to Toni Abernathy of Oxford, Miss. to Lyn Watkins in holiday red, Cathy Posey in printed chiffon, Ethel Clay in a dazzling silver cocktail suit. Louellen Berger, Julie Breitmeyer, Linda and Gordon Kolb, and Susan Johnson traded updates of horticulture readiness for the Friends of the Cablido “Uptown Garden Tour” two days later.

FOC board member-realtor Margaret Maxwell and pals too in the gracious jardins of the above as well as those of Karen and George Solomon, Barbara and David Waller, Heidi and Frank Friedler, Jill and Mark Winston, Catherine and Jim MacPhaille
and Claire Webb.

A group of tastemakers invited by Tod Chambers, GM of the Roosevelt, and Mark Wilson, who directs sales and marketing, to review an array of china, crystal,
cutlery, linens for the soon-to-be opened hotel. Charlotte Bollinger, who’ll head next year’s ballet ball, and destination management pro-cum-social fixture Bonnie Boyd were among those passing judgment and reminiscing about glamorous goings on
at the Blue Room and the lobby at Christmas covered in angel hair at the hotel Pre-Hurricane Katrina.

Bonnie Boyd and husband John threw open the doors of their Felicity Street home for France-Amérique de la Louisianes “Soiree d’Automne” before Thanksgiving. Keven and Haydee Mackey were among those being greeted by the doorbell, which plays the French national anthem.

Now decorate the house, book the hairdresser, support local stores and get prepared for there are parties galore, the PRC Holiday Home Tour and cookies to bake! “Cheers” to one and all. 

Along the Avenue
David Murphy, W Hotel’s Stephanie Miller and Prospect.1’s Dan Cameron at VIP reception.
Along the Avenue
Mary Hines at Ten Plus Ten.
Along the Avenue
Ethel and Gordan Clay at Historic Houses party.

Along the Avenue
Julian Feibelman, Morris Herman and Carol and Mac McCall at the opera.
Along the Avenue
Julie Breitmeyer, a host of Friends of the Cablido Uptown Garden Tour.