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John R. Clutts, Chair, The 5th Annual DSM High School Musical Theatre Awards; Tracy Jordan, Program Manager, DSM HSMTA. Photo by Chris Waits.

Deadline to register is Friday, October 2, 2015
Mark your calendars for the Awards Show on Thursday, April 14, 2016

 Michael A. Jenkins, President and Managing Director, Dallas Summer Musicals, Inc. (DSM), announced long-time supporter and DSM Board member John R. Clutts has been named chair of The 5th Annual DSM High School Musical Theatre Awards.

         
As president of The Clutts Agency, Inc., which is a Texas Talent Agency and a SAG/AFTRA franchised agency, John is a former Neiman Marcus executive with 25 years of experience in the photo industry, has performed on stage in many regional productions and taught musical theatre at Dallas Theatre Center. In addition to serving as a DSM board member, he also serves on the Advisory Board of The Dallas Children's Theater and the Board of Dallas Contemporary. He has served as: VP, USA Film Festival; Chair, Dallas Fashion Incubator; and Chair of the Board of Trustees, DIFFA/Dallas. He has chaired many charitable events, including Cabaret Gala benefiting Dallas Children's Theater 2011 and 2005; Fresh Faces of Fashion 2007 benefiting Suicide and Crisis Center and DIFFA|Dallas Collection 2001. In 2005, he was awarded DIFFA’s highest award, the Legend Award.
         
“John’s experience in the community as a dedicated leader and volunteer, along with his business acumen and insight, is the perfect combination for this role as chair of The 5th Annual High School Musical Awards,” Jenkins said.
         
“I am honored to chair this program and be a part of its continued development and success,” John replied. “The reach of this program across North Texas is growing and we look forward to even more schools participating next year.”
         
Celebrating its 5th year, DSM’s High School Musical Theatre Awards (HSMTA) had 65 high schools participating in 2015 - which is more than double the first year's total of 30 high schools participating, representing 33 school districts across North Texas. Among the 65 were also 7 private high schools. This represented a new all-time high of high schools, teachers and students taking part in the program.
         
DSM HSMTA remains the largest program of its kind in the state and the second largest program in the country. DSM HSMTA has been recognized by The National High School Musical Theatre Awards as their official affiliate program for North Texas.
         
Since DSM’s First Annual High School Musical Theatre Awards in 2012, this has truly developed into a regional program, accepting high schools as far away as Denton and McKinney to the north, Waco to the south, Abilene to the west and Paris, Texas to the east.
         
Deadline to register for The 5th Anniversary HSMTA is Friday, October 2. Slated for Thursday, April 14, 2016 at the Music Hall at Fair Park, the awards show is a red carpet affair and the public is invited to join in the excitement.  Red carpet arrival begins at 5:30 p.m. The show begins at 7:00 p.m. with performances which include separate medleys of the Best Actor and Best Actress nominees, production numbers from Best Musical nominees and an opening number featuring all nominated performers accompanied by a live orchestra. Winners and scholarship recipients are announced. The show is topped off with a finale of performers from each participating high school.
         
Based on Broadway’s Tony® Awards, DSM High School Musical Theatre Awards are designed to recognize and reward excellence in the production of high school musical theatre. Several cash scholarships of at least $1,000 each are awarded.  In 2015, DSM awarded seven cash scholarships of $5,000 each to outstanding participating students.  To date, DSM has awarded over $100,000 in cash scholarships to outstanding students.
         
Jenkins said, “This program encourages participation in the musical arts throughout North Texas. It is important to encourage these talented students to follow their dreams and goals and to draw attention to the excellent work being done in education in musicals in our area high schools. This is a wonderful opportunity for everyone involved and a great show! We are grateful to founding sponsors Leah and Jerry Fullinwider for their support and vision, which literally brought this awards program to life.”
         
Jenkins praised the community’s support saying, “For our preeminent educational outreach program to have grown so significantly in such a short time is a tribute to DSM as a resource to our community and a wonderful testament to the tremendous contribution of the teachers, judges, committee members and volunteers. We encourage everyone to visit the high schools and watch the shows first-hand.”
         
John added, “With the celebration of its 75th Anniversary, DSM is putting the focus on the next 75 years as the High School Musical Theatre Awards program spotlights the Broadway stars of tomorrow.”
         
Applications for 2016 are now being accepted. High schools can register online at DallasSummerMusicals.org/HSMAwards.shtm
         
A three-judge panel of entertainment industry professionals and veteran educators will visit each high school and judge the performers in 16 categories: Best Musical, Best Direction, Best Musical Direction, Best Choreography, Best Orchestra, Best Scenic Design, Best Costume Design, Best Lighting, Best Ensemble, Best Crew, Best Actor, Best Actress, Best Supporting Actor, Best Supporting Actress, Best Featured Male Performer and Best Featured Female Performer. Ballots will be submitted to the accounting firm of Grant Thornton.
         
Winners of the Best Performance by an Actor and Actress receive an all-expense paid trip for five days to New York City to represent their high school in The National High School Musical Theatre Awards (the Jimmy™ Awards) for the chance to win prizes and scholarships, which vary by year.
         
Participating high schools and their shows will be listed on the website at http://DallasSummerMusicals.org/HSMAwards.shtm or for questions, contact Tracy Jordan, the program manager at 214-413-3951 or tjordan@dallassummermusicals.org

Facebook page is constantly updated at https://www.facebook.com/DSMHSMTA

National program website: http://www.nhsmta.com/pages/frequently-asked-questions

Get updates and news through our social media web sites:

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Twitter: https://twitter.com/dsmusicals  
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/dsmusicals
Foursquare: https://foursquare.com/v/dallas-summer-musicals/4f204f6b0cd6445b05407d98  Pinterest: http://pinterest.com/dsmusicals 
WordPress: http://dallassummermusicals.wordpress.com                          

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Janet Dorsett, Tony Dorsett, Honorary Chairs

Champions for Hope annual dinner and golf tournament benefited Hope’s Door, a comprehensive domestic violence agency in Collin County, serving all of North Texas.
         
Honorary chairs Janet and Tony Dorsett joined Jim Malatich, CEO of Hope’s Door, along with Suzanne Bock Grishman, Chief Development Officer and Cary Clayborn, chair of the golf tournament, at the dinner at III Forks restaurant recently.
         
The evening began with cocktails, hors d’oeuvres and a silent auction including sports memorabilia and some one-of-a-kind packages  including an intimate dinner & evening with Tony & Janet Dorsett at Savor restaurant for four.
         
LeeAnne Locken, emcee, welcomed guests and introduced Jim, who shared stories about BIPP, the Battering Intervention and Prevention Program, which is a 24-week minimum group counseling program where abusers learn to eliminate abusive behavior and bring peace to intimate relationships and more. Details are on the website here:  http://www.hopesdoorinc.org/what_we_do/bipp.html

         
After dinner, Cary thanked Janet and Tony for coming on board as honorary chairs, saying they are truly family oriented and give back so much; their involvement and dedication is making a difference in the lives of the families served by Hope’s Door.

         
Tony said giving back and touching lives is a very good feeling and he and Janet appreciate the opportunity to be involved.

         
LeRoy Moore III, a friend of Hope’s Door, shared his personal story of his mother’s experience with domestic violence and how it eventually lead to her death, hoping sharing his story may save someone else. LeeAnne also shared her story, saying it’s important to teach everyone to know what signs to look for, to communicate with those who can help and that Hope’s Door has created a village of hope for those in need.

         
A call for donations brought many raised hands and a round of applause when the new Give.Mobi application was unveiled. This application enables supporters to donate to Hope’s Door via a QR code or custom URL at give.mobi/hopesdoor to reach Hope’s Door mobile giving page, select a donation value and Pledge or Click To Give immediately via debit, credit or PayPal Credit.

The weather for the golf tournament at Las Colinas Country Club the next day was perfect. Eighteen teams competed for prizes.          

Dinner and golf tournament sponsors include: Guardian Sponsor: Consolidated Communications. Defender Sponsors: Mercury One, Rent-A-Center, CMGRx and Advocate Sponsors: Emerson and John Cooper.
         
Host committee: Diana and Rich Cesario, Nancy and Mark Champion, Cherryl and Cary Clayborn, Suzanne and Michael Grishman, Cortland and Mathew Grynwald, Anita Hawkins, Mercury One, Bronwyn and Dan Levitan, Charles Kallassy, Misty and Phillip Koch, Stephanie and Chris Milligan, Jennifer and David Panter, Bill Wallace.
         
Hope’s Door’s mission is to offer intervention and prevention services to individuals and families affected by domestic violence and to provide educational programs that enhance the community’s capacity to respond.
         
Hope’s Door is a shelter and counseling center in Collin County that offers comprehensive programs and services designed to help break the cycle of domestic violence to families in Collin County, Dallas County and surrounding areas.  Since its inception in 1986, Hope’s Door has provided emergency shelter for over 6,000 women and their children, answered more than 30,000 crisis line calls and provides counseling hours to community members affected by domestic violence.
         
Hope’s Door is a non-profit 501c-3 organization. Visit the website at HopesDoorInc.org
         
For more information; contact Suzanne Bock Grishman, Chief Development Officer, at Suzanne.Bock@hopesdoorinc.org , (972)-422-2911.

Photos by Misty Hoyt.

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Marisa Tomei, featured speaker

The Family Place 20th Anniversary Texas Trailblazer Awards Luncheon chairs Michaela Dyer and Layne Pitzer along with Honorary Chair Debbie Taylor are thrilled to announce the award recipients for the luncheon on Thursday, October 1st at the Hilton Anatole, which features Academy Award-winning actress Marisa Tomei as the keynote speaker.

Nancy A. Nasher will be honored as the Texas Trailblazer. This award recognizes someone who has accomplished a “first” and opened the doors of opportunity for other people and made significant contributions either in their community, business or profession. No matter what the accomplishments, however, the Trailblazer is someone who has blazed a trail for others to follow.

As co-owner of NorthPark Center along with her husband, David J. Haemisegger, Nancy is a dedicated philanthropist, serving on numerous boards and in cultural and educational leadership positions. She has been a champion of the arts and a leader in making art accessible to the community. Her commitment to improving the quality of life in Dallas through her support of numerous charities has made a tremendous impact and has changed countless lives for the better.

The event will also honor Robert “Bob” Miller as the Real-Life Hero for his lifetime of contribution to philanthropic and fundraising news. He spent 64 years at The Dallas Morning News, retiring in June of this year. He started writing obituaries, then was promoted to night city editor, assistant city editor and city editor. He started writing his widely read column in the Business Section in 1984 and it became the place for philanthropic and fundraising news. His column publicized both old and new Dallas charities, giving them the attention that helped create services to help Dallas become an event greater city.

The United Way of Metropolitan Dallas has been named recipient of the Advocacy Award. This vital organization not only strengthens the mission of The Family Place but for 90 years has been bringing people together to improve lives and create lasting change in North Texas by focusing on education, income, and health—the building blocks for strong families and thriving communities. The United Way galvanizes and connect all sectors of society—individuals, businesses, nonprofits, and government—to create long-term change through investing in solutions that produce healthy, well-educated and financially stable individuals and families. The United Way raises, invests and leverages more than $50 million annually in community-focused solutions serving Dallas, Collin, Rockwall and southern Denton counties. The Family Place has been fortunate to have United Way support for more than 30 years.

Erin Baptiste and Julissa Figueroa are The Family Place Youth Service Award and Scholarship winners. These students are recognized as outstanding leaders at the Texas Trailblazers Luncheon for their contribution and participation in The Family Place Be Project program, acting as mentors to educate their peers about healthy relationships in an effort to preventing bullying, teen dating violence and sexual assault. Erin will be attending University of Colorado at Boulder and Julissa is going to The University of Texas at San Antonio.
         
Marisa Tomei continues to bridge the gap between rich, dramatic performances and smart, comedic turns.  Whether working with large studios or independent houses, Marisa consistently brings her independent spirit to every project with which she is involved.  Marisa won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her role as Mona Lisa Vito in My Cousin Vinny.  Marisa also traveled to Ethiopia to direct a short film based on the Nicholas Kristof and Sheryl WuDunn’s book Half the Sky.  The film, which was also her directorial debut, focuses on a thirteen year old girl’s struggle with the institutionalized oppression of women in Ethiopia. She will make a presentation and also have a conversation with the luncheon’s moderator. “I am thrilled to be a part of the 20th Anniversary Texas Trailblazer Awards Luncheon as we honor those whose philanthropic efforts have made a long-lasting impact on the Dallas community” Marisa says.
         
Since its inception 20 years ago, the Texas Trailblazer Award Luncheon has been recognized as a premier event in the Dallas community. Tickets start at $175 and underwriting tables start at $1,750. Sponsorships are available. Last year’s event was a complete sell-out, so now is the time to reserve your table or ticket. For questions, visit the website at www.familyplace.org/events or contact Shivangi Pokharel directly at (214) 443 – 7708 or texastrailblazers@familyplace.org    

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Alisha Gummer, Chris Gummer, co-chair; Jay Gummer, co-chair; Cameron Gummer; Chuck Gummer, Cindy Gummer, chairs; Michelle Gummer, Ryan Gummer, co-chair

Mark your calendars for Saturday, October 17, 2015

Going to the zoo is always a treat and especially when there is a party.  A cool breeze was in the air and everyone was in a festive mood as they boarded the trams piloting them to the Premier Party for the Zoo To Do 2015: The Roaring ‘20s in the Simmons Safari Base Camp with an with an up close view of the No. 1 ranked zoo exhibit in Texas, the Giants of the Savanna, by USA Today’s 10 Best travel rankings.

Zoo To Do chairs and Lake Highlands residents Cindy and Chuck Gummer did not miss a beat designing the room with swank memorabilia, custom posters with family resemblances and photos from the Roaring ‘20s, setting the scene showcasing the gourmet delights created by the Zoo’s Executive Chef Jacob Hunter.

While zebras paraded, elephants roamed and antelopes leaped across the terrain, partygoers dined al fresco on favorites such as deviled eggs, authentic White Castle burgers wrapped in trademark paper, a delicious spin on the classic Waldorf salad presented in bibb lettuce wraps and a mashed and sweet potato bar accompanied by cocktails and wine. A very special dessert dubbed "Bathtub Gin and Juice Sorbet," consisting of grapefruit, Hendricks gin, awesomeness, with a sprig of mint topped the evening off with a refreshing spirit.

Sean Greene, Vice President of Guest Experiences at the Dallas Zoo, brought the crowd together with a fantastic demonstration featuring a trumpeter hornbill crane piloting through the air and returning to his spot right next to Sean.

Gregg Hudson, president and CEO, thanked everyone for their support and attending this evening’s event. Michael Gruber, Chairman of the Board, introduced Zoo To Do chairs Cindy and Chuck Gummer, saying they have a passion for nature and conservation.

“We’re thrilled to chair the 2015 Zoo To Do with our family,” said Cindy Gummer, chair with her husband, Chuck. “Our sons signed on as co-chairs the minute we asked them and their wives all support this very important event and the mission. We all look forward to a wonderfully successful evening of fun and fundraising.” She introduced Chris Gummer and his wife, Alisha; Jay Gummer and his wife, Cameron; Ryan Gummer and his wife, Michelle and thanked underwriting chair Mike Andereck for his commitment to the cause.

Co-chair Chuck Gummer expressed his thanks to the board and everyone who has signed on to help, saying the event has the best components for success. He said the Dallas Zoo is a very well respected institution in the City of Dallas. He then made an exciting announcement, which was received with a round of applause - Micki and The Honorable Mike Rawlings have signed on as honorary chairs. Helping create this memorable party are Honorary Chef Dan Landsberg and Chef Chair Sarah Barr, both of Dragonfly at Hotel ZaZa, and advising on fundraising and the overall event are the Advisory Council members Jennifer Altabef, Diane Brierley, Patty Stone and Ellen Winspear.

Slated for Saturday, October 17, 2015 at the Dallas Zoo, guests and patrons of Zoo To Do 2015: The Roaring ‘20s will stroll through the award-winning Giants of the Savanna exhibit, sample exquisite dishes from over twenty-five of Dallas’ premier chefs and restaurants, and enjoy interactive animal demonstrations and musical entertainment. Following dinner, guests will move to the Wilds of Africa plaza for a live auction featuring rare Zoo experiences, travel, and more! Next, dance the night away with music from Party Machine.

Zoo To Do is a major source of funding for the Dallas Zoo.  With the proceeds from the event, the zoo is able to continue providing outstanding education, entertainment, and wildlife conservation.

Sponsorships range from $1,500 to $100,000. Underwriting ranges from $7,500 to $25,000. Individual tickets are $500 each. For more information, visit the website at http://www.dallaszootodo.com or contact Rebecca A. Rhule, CFRE, Director of Development at 469.554.7440 or email her at Rebecca.Rhule@DallasZoo.com.  

(Photos by Cathy Burkey.)

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United States Congressman Pete Sessions, Rose Gault, Jeff Gault, Luncheon Chairs

The Stand Up For Heroes luncheon announcement reception benefiting the Army Scholarship Foundation was hosted by Hillwood – A Perot Company in their Victory Park offices recently.
         
Luncheon chairs Rose and Jeff Gault, along with party host Darcy Anderson, Vice-Chairman, Hillwood – A Perot Company, welcomed United States Congressman Pete Sessions, Advisory Chair Carmaleta Whiteley Felton and members of the host committee including Patricia and Mark Armstrong, Jon Arnette, The Honorable Allen Clark, Otis Felton, Roger Gault, Stan Graff, Lieutenant General (USA Ret) Stanley Green, Robert Hastings, Bob Pikna, Joe Siniscalchi and Mary and Patrick Scully.          

Host committee members who were not able to attend were John Avila, Shawn Black, Michael Blount, Sanford “Sandy” Brown, Michele Vonnegut Costello, Jeff Forbes, Lieutenant General (USA Ret) Jay Garner, Marena Gault, Jim Hathaway, Mark House, The Honorable Ambassador Robert Jordan, Michael Lunceford, Ross Perot, Jr., Dave Scalera and Thomas and Joan Stephens.

Jeff introduced Darcy, who spoke about his and Hillwood and Perot Company’s involvement with the Army Scholarship Foundation. Jeff then announced the host committee, and reminded everyone to attend the inaugural luncheon on Tuesday, October 27th at the Brook Hollow Golf Club. Introductory remarks will be provided by Lieutenant General Jay Garner, US Army retired, former Assistant Chief of Staff of the US Army, and Director of the Office for Reconstruction and Humanitarian Assistance for Iraq. The speaker is General John Abizaid, US Army, Retired, a former Commander U.S. Central Command. Jody Dean, KLUV  98.7 FM Morning Show host will serve as the emcee.
         
The Army Scholarship Foundation is a nonprofit organization created by United States Army Veterans to serve soldiers and their families.  The Army Scholarship Foundation’s purpose is to help children and spouses of soldiers fulfill their dreams of higher education.          

Congressman Sessions spoke about how important it is for members of the Army to know the Scholarship Foundation is there to help them so their children can grow up with a dream of a higher education.
         
The reception valet was sponsored by Gold Crown Valet and featured an array of delicious food sponsored by Babe’s Chicken Dinner House, Corner Bakery, The Classic Gourmet, The Festive Kitchen and Picasso’s.
         
Luncheon tickets are $150 each with Priority seating at $500 and above. Table hosts, sponsors and underwriters benefits include preferred seating, special program visibility and more.          

For more information, contact Rose Gault, chair, at rose.gault@armyscholarshipfoundation.org, call 703-599-8029 or mail your request to Army Scholarship Foundation, 11700 Preston Road, # 660-301, Dallas, TX  75230.
                    

(Photos by Dana Driensky)

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Martha Lang, Linda Hughes, MD, past-president; Sandy Secor, Champion for the Health Fair and past-president, DCMSA; Michelle Anderson, Co-Chair, Health Fair

IMMUNIZATIONS BY CARING FOR CHILDREN FOUNDATION CARE VAN™
Saturday, August 22 w 1pm - 3pm

Uptown, Dallas, Texas – Located at 3966 McKinney Avenue, just north of Blackburn Street, Church of the Incarnation Episcopal hosts a Free Back to School Immunization  Clinic. The event is free to the public and is an easy way to bring your child’s shots up to date. It is sponsored by Church of the Incarnation with immunizations provided by Texas Care Van.

Also participating are the Dallas County Medical Society Alliance, The Dallas Police Central Neighborhood Patrol, Telemundo, Agape Clinic and North Dallas Shared Ministries.  Meningitis and whooping cough vaccines will be included in the vaccines offered. Free student sports physicals will also be given.  First come, first served. Participants need to bring their immunization records.

  • Free Immunizations
  • Free Participation/Sports Physicals
  • Free Dental Screenings
  • Free Eye Exams

Immunizations are important, Safe, and Effective Vaccines are free to: Children and students 2 months old to 18 years of age, Medicaid eligible, Uninsured: a child with no health insurance coverage, American Indian or Alaskan Native, Underinsured (a child whose health coverage does not include vaccines).

VACINATE BEFORE YOU GRADUATE - free meningitis vaccines 

The clinic will feature the immunizations, a Zumba class, an "Ask the Doctor" booth, free sports physicals and other health information. A sports equipment  give away, bicycle with helmet give away will also take place with a limited number of donations. The Dallas Police Central Neighborhood Patrol Office will sponsor a bicycle safety course at the Health Fair. The Mounted Patrol, McGruff the Crime Dog and Police Low rider will also be there the day of the event.  This year we welcome the Texas A & M Baylor School of Dentistry and the sealant van to our event. Telemundo will be providing reusable grocery bags and have a booth at the event.

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Brooke Andrews, luncheon co-chair; Jeannette Walls, featured speaker; Karen Currie, luncheon co-chair

The 18th Annual Pot of Gold Luncheon raised over $250,000 in support for Rainbow Days’ programs and services.  More than 600 attendees gathered at the Hilton Anatole Hotel in Dallas to celebrate the luncheon and silent auction.
         
Guests left feeling inspired by keynote speaker, Jeannette Walls, New York Times Best Selling author and a true testament to overcoming adversity to achieve optimal success. “Jeannette’s nomadic childhood of living out of the family car or in rundown houses with her siblings, alcoholic father and mentally unstable mother, as captured in her memoir, is similar to the situations of many of the children we serve,” said Cathey Brown, Founder and CEO, Rainbow Days, Inc.          

This year’s luncheon also included performances by Dallas' own children’s entertainer, Eddie Coker, who delivered two energetic songs – Say Hello and I Believe – alongside the children of Rainbow Days performers. Guests were moved by the song, I Believe, based on Rainbow Days’ major messages and written specifically by Mr. Coker to celebrate Rainbow Days’ positive impact.
         
Luncheon Co-Chairs and Southlake residents, Brooke Andrews and Karen Currie, led a team of committee members who helped make the luncheon a success. Attendees helped raise much-needed financial support through an extensive silent auction led by Auction Chair, Nicole Williams with the support of the auction committee. The auction brought in more than 225 packages, and thanks to the donations of 200+ local businesses and individuals and through the purchases of generous patrons, Rainbow Days raised over $35,000 through this year’s silent auction.
         
Cathey Brown spoke with mother-daughter-duo, Jennifer and Rachel Arthur, who are participants in the Rainbow Days programs and currently living in one of Dallas’s homeless shelters. Speaking to the event’s theme, “Every Child is a Story yet to be Told,” Cathey asked Jennifer and Rachel to share about their story and the journey that brought them to Rainbow Days. Prior to the interview, the audience viewed the FOX 4 News clip that featured Rachel and Jennifer in a story highlighting the excitement surrounding going back to school. 
         
Special thanks to the patrons and other important individuals who made significant contributions: Todd Whitthorne, President, ACAP Health, who has served as emcee for nearly 15 years and JM Productions, who donated their creative talent once again with music accompaniment throughout the luncheon.

Sincere gratitude to this year’s major sponsors ($3,000 and up): Diamond: Nancy Ann Hunt; Platinum: Compatriot Capital, Mary Kay Inc.  Gold: Colleen & Bob Baillargeon, Citi, Kara & Peter Gehan, Jones Day, Krystal Clear Audio-Video, ORIX Foundation; Silver: Advanced Resources, Bank of Texas, The Dallas Morning News, HP Kids Read, Mary Jo & James McKellar, Julie & Greg Pascuzzi, Venise & Larry Stuart, Thompson & Knight.

Rainbow Days offices are located in the Park Cities. For more information about Rainbow Days, please contact Cathey Brown, Founder & CEO, at 214-887-0726, catheyb@rdikids.org or visit the website at www.rainbowdays.org.

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Sharon McGowan, Executive Director, Friends of Wednesday’s Child; Amanda Ryan, G. Brint Ryan, Honorary Chairs; Cachet Petty Weinberg, Luncheon Chair

This year celebrated 31 years of transforming students’ lives in foster care by improving their educational path

Friends of Wednesday’s Child celebrated its 31st anniversary with a luncheon recently at the Morton H. Meyerson Symphony Center to benefit the organization in its mission to transform the lives of children in foster care through education. Former First Lady, 

Mrs. Laura W. Bush was the keynote speaker, sponsored by the Ryan Foundation, which is also the sustaining sponsor. The event was chaired by Cachet Petty Weinberg with Amanda and G. Brint Ryan as Honorary Chairs.

Underwriters, sponsors and VIP guests were welcomed with a champagne reception as they were treated to a photo opportunity with Mrs. Bush.

Cynthia Izaguirre, WFAA newscaster was emcee and moderator, began the event by welcoming everyone and introduced special guests Allie and Luis, Friends of Wednesday’s Child Success in School students and their foster parents; Paula and Scott Beasley, founders and added a special thank you to the caseworkers and judges in attendance.

Luncheon began following the invocation, including a caramelized pecan chicken cranberry salad, citrus blended vegetable couscous, baby arugula salad, grilled asparagus and tomato gratin drizzled with white balsamic dressing. Dessert was a fresh baked apple streusel galette with caramel sauce.

Brint Ryan introduced Mrs. Bush, who brought the gathering up to date on the most current happenings with the Bush family, saying her father-in-law, George H. W. Bush, celebrated his 90th birthday the same way he celebrates every birthday, by sky diving and related other family anecdotes.

Her message was clear as she shared a story about when she first started teaching school and a young boy whose circumstances touched her heart, emphasizing that every child deserves an education and a safe and healthy home. She talked about first responders and their commitment to service, challenging everyone to understand that in these circumstances, even just one hour can make all of the difference in the world.

Cynthia presented the story of Juan, a Friends of Wednesday’s Child foster child and student, saying he continues to be successful through hard work with a tutor, who reports he is gaining confidence in himself and showing pride in all that he accomplishes.

In the Q & A, Mrs. Bush talked about the importance of extra-curricular activities, encouraged parents to be models for their children and said her second grade teacher was her inspiration to become a teacher and help children strive for freedom from ignorance. Her message to foster children is that they have many people who love them, even though they may not know them all. Many are acting on their behalf.

Cachet thanked Mrs. Bush, saying she is a true champion for children. She also offered gratitude to the Ryan Foundation for their continued sponsorship, the Honorary Chairs and all of today’s sponsors and underwriters for their commitment to the organization, saying their donations help create a better tomorrow for children in foster care.  She expressed how much of a positive impact just a few dollars can make towards the successful outcome of a foster child’s future.  She said, “We are raising money to transform foster children’s lives by providing them access to academic and essential supports to be successful in school and in life, everything from one on one and enrichment activities ranging from after-school tutoring, college scholarships, dance lessons and so much more.”

Brittnay Connor, who grew up in foster care and will soon be teaching in Columbia as part of her Fulbright scholarship, had the audience in tears as she shared her personal experience as a foster child, detailing the everyday challenges facing foster children, beginning at a very young age and through her struggles, how she overcame her feelings of desperation and pushed herself so very hard to succeed. The entire crowd showed their support with a rousing standing ovation.          

Sharon McGowan, Executive Director of Friends of Wednesday’s Child, expressed heartfelt thanks to Cachet as a "tireless supporter of foster children today," chairing this luncheon for the second consecutive year. She expressed sincere gratitude to all attendees for joining in celebrating this year and said that 2,500 foster children were helped last year by Friends of Wednesday’s Child and there still remain 3,500 more to help and referred back to the FWC mission: Transforming  the  lives  of  children   in  foster care  through education.Support of Friends of Wednesday’s Child Luncheon helps ensure that foster children graduate high school on time and have a plan for their future.  

For questions or more information, visit the website at www.wedchild.org  Contact Sharon McGowan at smcgowan@wedchild.org or call 972-­‐231-­‐1433, ext. 202.

Photos by Daniel Driensky and Chris Waits

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Doug Box, author of Cutter Frisco: Growing Up on the Original Southfork Ranch and featured speaker; Alyce Heinrich, president, Les Femmes du Monde; Douglas Haloftis, host.

The Bluffview home of Douglas Haloftis and Fernando Gonzales set an elegant scene as they hosted the second luncheon in the Soup and Salad series of Les Femmes du Monde recently.
         
Guests enjoyed champagne and wines as they chatted with Alyce Heinrich, president of Les Femmes du Monde and Doug Box, the featured speaker and author of Cutter Frisco: Growing Up on the Original Southfork Ranch as they mingled throughout the home filled with fresh flowers, accompanied by a pianist entertaining all with classic favorites.
         
The second in a series of three events, the Soup and Salad luncheon began service with a selection of gourmet cheeses accompanied by fresh fruit and a selection of baguettes. A luscious salad of spinach and arugula with baby lettuces combined with dried cranberries, mandarin oranges, candied walnuts, feta and a special dressing accompanied the hearty Philadelphia Steak soup. Topping it all off were a selection of freshly baked cookies, specialty breads and huge fresh strawberries, the perfect setting for Box’s delicious stories.
         
Alyce welcomed everyone and thanked the hosts for their generous hospitality in opening their fabulous home for today’s luncheon, which received a round of appreciative applause.
         
Taking the stage, Doug Box dimmed the lights and began his presentation speaking about his childhood home in Frisco, then called the Box Ranch, which was the original home used by the Dallas television series in its first season’s first five episodes. He introduced his family through the presentation, including his father, Cloyce Box, the storied patriarch and entrepreneur thought by many to be the inspiration for Dallas’ J. R. Ewing, his mother, Fern, older brothers and stories about growing up on the ranch and riding his favorite cutting horse, Cutter Frisco.
         
The Box family was very well known and liked in Frisco and supported the city and its residents in all aspects of community service and involvement. In anecdotes both sweet and bitter, the youngest Box son remembered what it was like to grow up as a member of Texas royalty; if Frisco had a “first family,” the Boxes were it.
         
Doug’s childhood was replete with professional athletes, television crews, celebrities, Miss America pageants, and all the glitz and glamour of southern grandeur. Through a news video, he related how the house caught fire in 1987 through a painter’s accident.  It was being rebuilt in 1993 when Cloyce suffered the heart attack that killed him. The partially rebuilt house’s steel frame stands today as it was then, at the northeast intersection of Main Street and Preston Road in Frisco. 
         
Ultimately, a downturn in the Texas economy would come back to haunt the Box family, leading to the eventual sale of Doug’s beloved horse, Cutter Frisco, and ultimately the ranch itself.
         
After a round of applause, Alyce reminded everyone about the next Soup and Salad luncheon on Tuesday, August 18th, which features Ambassador Robert Jordan, who was the USA Ambassador to Saudi Arabia when 9/11 took place.  He has written a book entitled The Desert Diplomat.
         
Mark your calendars for the Woman of the Year gala on Wednesday, October 14th, chaired by Venise Stuart, celebrating Virginia Cook as the Woman of the Year. Proceeds from the gala event benefit The Child Life Program at Children’s HealthSM Children’s Medical Center and the International Education Program of the World Affairs Council of Dallas/Fort Worth. Les Femmes du Monde has donated more than $2 million to the World Affairs Council of Dallas Fort Worth, and more than $670,000 to Children’s Medical Center.
         
Tickets for the gala begin at $250 each.  Sponsorships and underwriting are available. Visit the website for details at www.lesfemmesdumonde.org        
         
Membership in Les Femmes du Monde is open to the public and includes many benefits, such as invitations to events in private homes, the Woman of the Year celebration, New Member reception, Annual Meeting and Luncheon, and the opportunity to meet new friends and learn more about the world we live in.
         
Past Woman of the Year Honorees (in chronological order): Doris S. Dixon; Ruth Collins Sharp Altshuler; Caroline Rose Hunt; Annette Strauss, Mayor of Dallas; Vivian Castleberry; Mary Kay Ash; Ebby Halliday; Catherine Crier; Kay Bailey Hutchison, U.S. Senator; Laura Bush, First Lady of Texas; Juanita Miller; Nancy Brinker; Gloria Campos; Florence Shapiro, Texas State Senator; Liz Minyard and Gretchen Minyard Williams; Karen Hughes, Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs; Billie Leigh Rippey; Dee Wyly; Anita Perry, First Lady of Texas; Yvonne Crum; Geraldine “Tincy” Miller; Dr. Gail Thomas, President and CEO, The Trinity Trust Foundation; Mary Lee Cox; Virginia Chandler Dykes, Gina Ginsburg, Lynn McBee, Margaret McDermott, Pat Smith, Nina Vaca.

 (Photos by Dana Driensky)

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Dallas Summer Musicals Academy of Performing Arts Presents PIPPIN! 

Join in the fun on Saturday, July 25, 2015 for one of three shows presented at 10:00 a.m., 1:00 p.m., 4:00 p.m. as the Dallas Summer Musicals Academy of Performing Arts presents PIPPIN! The show runs about 2 hours.  Parking is free at the Dallas Children’s Theatre in the Rosewood Center for Family Arts located at 5938 Skillman Street, Dallas, TX 75231.

You can buy tickets at the door. Prices are: Adults 17 years old and older: $10 per ticket. Children 6 years old to 16 years old: $5 per ticket. Children under 5 years old: FREE.

If you have questions about tickets, please call Amanda Farrow at 325-370-2215 or email afarrow@dallassummermusicals.org

Here is some information about the show: With an infectiously unforgettable score from the four-time Grammy-winner, three-time Oscar-winner, and musical theatre giant Stephen Schwartz (WICKED, GODSPELL, CHILDREN OF EDEN), PIPPIN has been successfully produced on stages ranging from High School to Broadway. Sweeping the New York Awards circuit (Tony, Drama Desk, Drama League, Outer Critics Circle) in 2013, PIPPIN continues to captivate the young at heart throughout the world.

The story is: In the Middle Ages heir to the Frankish throne, prince Pippin, searches for the secret to true happiness and fulfillment. He seeks it in the glories of the battlefield, the temptations of love and the intrigues of political power (after disposing of his father King Charlemagne the Great). In the end Pippin discovers that happiness lies not in extraordinary endeavors, but rather in the un-extraordinary moments that happen every day.

The students have trained hard this summer. This is about the classes: It was a triple threat program that emphasizes acting, singing and dancing for the professional stage. Multiple DSM Academy instructors teach this intensive. Morning activities include classes in Acting, How to Audition, Lessons about Agents, Voice, Steven Kavner’s Improv for the Actor, Circus Skills and preparation of Broadway songs to be filmed as a keepsake. In the afternoon skills taught in the morning are applied to the script and score of Stephen Schwartz’s PIPPIN. This is an intense program geared for the serious student. Music Theatre International rates the script PG-13. 

The DSM Academy of Performing Arts was founded in 1999 and operates as an affiliate of Dallas Summer Musicals in several locations in the Dallas area. Dallas Summer Musicals is a company that produces and presents Broadway, off-Broadway, West End and touring theatrical productions. The DSM Academy is comprised of 75% teens and 25% adults ranging in age from 7 to adult. The Academy is proud of its diverse and ethnic student population. The DSM Academy has granted over 250 need-based scholarships. The Academy helps to prepare the amateur and the professional for involvement in the performing arts. The purpose of this page is to connect people who have a common interest in the performing arts of any type. Visit the website at:http://www.academyatdsm.org

Evidence shows that arts education has a powerful effect on student achievement. When students participate in arts programs along with the core subjects of math, science, language, and social studies, these young people are:
* Three times more likely to be elected to class office.
* Four times more likely to participate in math and science.
* Three times more likely to win an award for school attendance.
* Four times more likely to win an award for writing an essay or poem.
* Four more times likely to be recognized for academic achievement.*
**Shirley Brice Heath, Stanford University and Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching, Americans for the Arts, November 1998

Recognizing the positive influence of the arts on the human experience, DSM Academy of Performing Arts strives not only to increase appreciation of the performing arts, but to teach those arts professionally.