Nell Nolan: Ogden “O” What a Night, Catholic Community Foundation, American Cancer Society | Parties/Society

Good nights !

By George!

For the Ogden Museum of Southern Art’s annual fundraiser, diptych delights were delivered. First there was the patrons’ day two days earlier at the flagship house of Walton and Jeffrey Goldring. Lasting two hours, it was exciting for everyone and was art-oriented with a preview of the 14 works that would be auctioned at the gala. Fueling the festival was Delachaise cuisine. Delicious deviled eggs flew off the trays.

Also starting at 6 p.m., but 48 hours later, O What a Night! began, “Celebrating and Supporting the Art of the Southern United States”. Two areas of the Camp Street Museum were the sites of “Night!” Billed “O what an evening!” the first frolic began in the Patrick F. Taylor Library with cocktail parties and a silent auction sponsored by Neal Auction Company as attractions. From there, guests headed to the tent adjacent to Stephen Goldring Hall for most of the party. Over the next few hours, the cheery crowd enjoyed dinner, the live auction and dancing. The crowning moment of excitement was the presentation of the Opus 2022 prize to a nonagenarian George Dunbar (joined by Louisette Brown), recipient of the Governor’s Lifetime Achievement Award in 2008 for his contribution to art and culture in Louisiana. A category-listed benefactor for the recent event, he was also a live auction donor with Katrina Andry, Raine Bedsole, Aron Belka, Michael J. Deas, Amilton Neves Cuna, William Dunlap, Simon Gunning, Gina Phillips, Ashley Pridmore, Gregory B. Saunders, Aimee Farnet Siegel, John Isiah Walton and Mitchell Wright. (It’s understandable that Dunbar’s Opus-winning work, courtesy of the artist and the Callan Contemporary gallery, was the top-selling item.)

Like O what a night! co-chairs, the bear names were Penny Francois and Jason Wavespack. More headliners were auctioneers Nicholas Lowry Swann Sales Galleries; Jessie Schott HaynesChairman of the Ogden Museum Board – officers are Geoffrey P. Snodgrass, Cleophus Thomas Jr., Justin Woods and William Pittman Andrews, executive Director; and dozens of administrators. Included in the list, and gala-vanting, was the museum’s namesake Roger Ogden (with Ken Barnes). After the last “live” batch, the Paddle Raise took place in support of the Charles D. Urstadt President of the Emeritus Acquisition Fund. Reaching Urstadt was David Bernard.

The tent glowed with the luminescence of 15 chandeliers. Decor credit taken from Wink Designs and Geometric Designs. To punctuate the bouquet, there were centerpieces of red anthuriums, orchids, greenery and golden stems, as well as similar floral cascades with roses on the stage, where Jeremy Davenport and CARMA! makes happy music. “I have a crush on you” was an early number. Saba and Beth Biundo Sweets fed the flock, respectively for the buffet dinner and the dessert menu.

Among the many noted were Bill Goldring, Coleman E. Adler II, Member of the city council Helena Moreno and Christopher Meeks, Gayle Benson, Dennis P. Lauscha (Alumnus of the year 2022 of the Jesuit high school), Nina Dunbar, Michelle and Jason Leckert, Richard Dragijic and William Brockschmidt, Judith Oudt, Lee Ledbetter, Sherrie Mitchell, Dorian Bennett, Katherine and Tony Gelderman, Beth and Hugh Lambert, Troy Scroggins and Frank Wilder, and countless others, including a number of the artists above. All were captivated by comments from George Dunbar, who said how much his life’s work, Opus, meant to him, especially as it was bestowed by people around him and recognized his work.

The dance capped off the ‘O’ activity as Ogdenophiles flocked to the floor. Earlier, Davenport performed “The Way You Look Tonight,” a track that resonated with all the visual virtues of the gala.

Raves for a restaurateur

The Board of the Archdiocese of the Catholic Community Foundation of New Orleans invited its constituency to the Hilton New Orleans Riverside for the annual dinner: Celebrating Catholic Generosity in Honor of Klara Buconic Cvitanovitch, recipient of the 2022 Saint John Paul II Prize. The “black tie” was preferred for the dress. Established in 1996, the award recognizes worthy lay Catholics who have rendered selfless service to the institutions and programs of the Archdiocese. The owner of Drago’s Seafood Restaurant, the winner often donates the restaurant’s proceeds to various charities. After Hurricane Katrina, she and her family distributed over 77,000 free meals. Joining Mrs. Cvitanovich, who has a namesake great-grandchild, Clara Tinneywere his two sons, Dr. Gerry and Tommy Cvitanovitchand their families, as well as his friends, Albert and Erin Nicaud, Laurie Ventura, and Jefferson Ward President Cynthia Lee Sheng. To name a few.

Highlights of the 35th dinner, which was attended by 450 guests, included the Rev. Andrew Rudmanthe St. Augustine High School Color Guard invocation, a three-course meal (including braised ribs), the Rev. Joseph Kraft‘s blessing, and two videos, including a surprise. Robert’s Fresh Market and Federico’s Family Florist provided the lovely flowers.

Headliners included Archbishop Foundation Board Chair Gregory M. AymondPresident Darlene Robertand officers Ronald H. Dawson Jr., Octave “Todd” J. Francis III and Dawn A. Laborie. Shannon Adams, Mary Jane Becker, Anne Dardis, Veda Dawson, Carol Hall, Cindy Nolan, Paulette Renaudin, Joy Zainey and Darlene Robert formed the dinner committee. Also noted the Rev. Luis RodriguezFormer Chairman of the FCC Board of Directors, Dr. Jose Bautistaexecutive Director Cory J. Howat, Carroll SuggsGeneral Manager Hilton David and Lisa Piscolaand mark plus who sent warm congratulations to Klara.

Heal by design

Hosted by Garrett Hartley and Kelsey Davis, The American Cancer’s Society’s Cure by Design, New Orleans’ 22nd Annual Gala and presented by the Ochsner Cancer Institute, was held at Mardi Gras World to benefit the Patrick F. Taylor Hope Lodge. Highlights of the chockablock program included cocktail hour entertainment by The Truffle Honeys, dinner stations, Oui Dat performance, CbD President Missie Lindseythe welcoming and recognition of sponsors, and the presentation of the Heart & Soul Award by Lindsey and Will BryantDirector of Sports Alliances for the American Cancer Society, at Gaelle Benson. Fifty-five people sat on the gala committee dedicated to the late journalist Suzanne Pfefferle Tafur. The following features were Fund the Mission Runway Show, Cure Champion of the Year Award, Music by D’Ivine Play, Silent Auction and Lee Michaels Jewelry Raffle.

Plus, there were the bash winners. As ladies, the names to know were Shannon Brice, Brandy D. Christian, Allison Shapiro Dandry, Janell Herbert-Bryant, Tandra Lemaydr. Suma Maddox, Deanna Rodriguez, dr. Jennifer Silinsky and Mariana H. Williamson, while the gentlemen were Tommy Benge Jr., Chad Berg, George Brower, Telley S. Madina, Parker Roydr. Ali Sadeghidr. John H. Stewart IV, Jonathan Stuart and Eric A. Wright. Glory!

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