French Quarter connections!

Two recent events focused a social view on the Vieux Carre. Back-to-back events started with the vinous vibes of Amazing Grapes, the annual fine wine and entertaining auction given by — and to benefit — the Hermann-Grima + Gallier Historic Houses. They are both National Historic Landmark properties located in the heart of the Quarter. The Westin New Orleans Canal Place housed the hobnobbing, described as “an elegant evening of food and wine, ” and Holt Kolb and Cara Ogg served as the chairing twosome. Accompanying them were their husbands, Gordon Kolb Jr. and Thomas Ogg IV. Marilee (Mrs. Andrew) Hovet presides over the Historic Houses Board of Managers.

The following day and evening, the New Orleans Spring Fiesta Association presented A Night in Old New Orleans 2013 and hailed Miss Margaret Claire Adams, daughter of Mr. Bruce Harold Adams and Ms. Claire Meyer Adams, as queen. Six Jewel Bearers beamed in their roles: Master Liam John Borgne Curran, son of Drs. William Joseph and Tracy Borgne Curran, and Misses Cecile Rose Valentine Borgne Curran, and Camille Rosalie Borgne Curran, daughters of the Drs. Curran. Also, Misses Eleanor Helen Hortencia Curtis, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Mark Edward Curtis; Marguerite Ellen Thibeaux, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Robert Paul Thibeaux; and Sloane Alexandra Paysee, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Rene Sylvain Paysse Jr.

Sisters Miranda Catherine Matherne and Mallary Catherine Matherne, daughters of Mr. and Mrs. Todd Edward Matherne, were the maids of honor, while Misses Emma Kathryn Christie and Paris Alexandra Khalaf, composed the demoiselles duo. Their respective parents are Mr. and Mrs. Keith Michael Christie and Dr. and Mrs. Ramiz Khalaf.

Last year, the Spring Fiesta crown was worn by Miss Carly Yvonne Treadway Diecidue, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Gary Edward Diecidue, and a debutante of the 2012-13 season.

A pre-event reception at the Spring Fiesta House in the Vieux Carre launched the day’s activity. With their close family members in attendance, the court gathered around the fountain in the sunny courtyard to receive their bouquets and the special Spring Fiesta pins.

Then it was on to Jackson Square for the presentation for which Indianola, Miss.-Mayor Steve Rosenthal stepped forward as master of ceremonies. Tourists and locals alike gathered to see the lovely antebellum ado. Along with the court, many costumed guests participated in the promenade throughout the square before getting into horse-drawn carriages for the parade through the quarter. To celebrate the pleasures of the upcoming vernal months, riders tossed lovely blooms.

The gala unfolded in the Sheraton New Orleans, where the Jerry Leonard Society Orchestra performed traditional music for the presentation and lively decibels for the later dancing. With the recognition of the 2013 Spring Fiesta President, the above Mrs. Thibeaux, the formalities started. Then came the presentation, which was highlighted by the appearance of the outgoing and incoming queens, Carly Diecidue (who was escorted by Spring Fiesta Board Member Mr. C. J. Blanda, and Meg Adams, a former Fiesta demoiselle (2010) and jewel bearer (1999). “Spring Fiesta has been an event that I have been part of since I was seven, ” she commented, finishing with “so having the opportunity to be queen was definitely an honor. This organization captures the history of New Orleans and celebrates our culture.”

Edith Theriot was the couturiere for monarch Meg’s dress. Made of silk noil, the white gown was adorned with a daisy-designed pearl application around the waist and skirt.

Among the many who applauded the presentation and then enjoyed dinner and dancing into the night were the queen’s parents, as well as her brother, Alexander Adams. Also, Tyra Treadway, 2003 queen Ardyn St. Romain, Naomi Mann, Marijane Childress, Barbara Richmond, Robin Ponthier (Mrs. Steve) Rosenthal, Blake Masterson (in from out of town, as were several others), Amelie Christman, Emma Stieffel, Kaydee Doyle, Anna Howell, Rachel Geary, Nicole Lafontaine, Mr. and Mrs. E. Benton Vickery III, 2012 President Karen Senter, Mr. Thibeaux (who joined presidential spouse Kelly), Lynette Stilwell, Dr. Leslie Higgins, and the Diecidues.

At the “Grapes” gala, sold-out as it has been in the past, the funding fun commenced with a patron party, followed by silent and live auctions and a three-course dinner with wine pairings from Trinchero Family Estates. The praline cheesecake with Avissi Prosecco was a sweet treat.

To open the oral bidding, HGGHH Executive Director Mamie Gasperecz “sabered” a bottle of sparkling wine. That means she lobbed the top of the bottle off with a saber! Highlights within that auction were myriad, and included two amazing get-aways: to Napa Valley in California and to Mexico. Thanks for getting the “going” gone went to auctioneer “extraordinaire” Ruthie Winston.

Within the high-profile pack were Rex 2013 Bill Hines and Mary; Lisa and Karl Hoefer, Tommy Westervelt, and Cleland Powell from the sponsoring IberiaBank; a Berger foursome in Darryl and Louellen and Brandon and Daphne; Olivia and Archie Manning; Anne and Edmond Redd; Basi and Michael Carbine; Patricia and Vernon Brinson; Stephanie and Ken Carroll; Betsy and Andrew Todd; Kathryn Brennan and Taylor Morgan; and board Vice President Carolyn Fitzpatrick and Brian.

Noted too, were Lorraine Demberg and Bill Hester, Catherine and Peter Freeman, Lee Adler and Robert Marks, Scott Bickford, Jackie Clarkson, Kendall Genre and Drew Morrison, recent returnees to New Orleans Philip and Jane Scott Hodges, and, adding more sponsorial representation, Kim Austin and Pierre Lapeyre (Whitney Bank) and Julie Isacks and Leonard (Superior Energy).

Thanks were abundant, particularly to co-chairwomen Holt and Cara, Carol Peebles, Barry Wiss and Keith delaGardelle (Trinchero Family Estates), Lisa Haddow and Tim Todaro (Elio’s Wine Warehouse), Tommy Moore, Marguerite Deangel and staff of the Westin Canal Place, and the volunteers and staff of the celebrated Hermann-Grima/Gallier Historic Houses. Cheers!

. . . . . . . .

Nell Nolan can be reached at or 504.826.3455.

Original Story Here


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