Shelby About Town

More Aspen hobnobbing, Nancy Pelosi's chocolate binge and Schwarzenegger duo headed here

More Aspen hobnobbing, Nancy Pelosi's chocolate binge and Schwarzenegger duo headed here

Jana and Scotty Arnoldy have been front and center for most of the philanthropic-oriented goings-on in Aspen this summer, putting their fab mountain aerie to good use by opening the doors more than once to worthy causes. Most recently was The Nature Conservancy fete featuring the state directors of Texas and Colorado, Laura Huffman and Tim Sullivan, respectively.

Supporters of the conservancy in Texas, Colorado, Louisiana and Arkansas joined the cocktail reception on the Arnoldy terrace where views of Buttermilk provided the Rocky Mountain high. The serious note to the gathering was delivered by Huffman, who spoke on water issues, conservation and the Texas drought. A number in the group were surprised to learn that the conservancy is involved in land, water, grassland, desert and forest preservation.

Among the 60 guests were Rick Terry, Houston development board chair of The Nature Conservancy of Texas, as well as Debbie and Vidal Martinez, Lindy Kahn, Sandy Kahn, Bill Price, Marie Oneal and Cecilia Alatriz of the Houston office of the conservancy.

The Arnoldys are serving as honorary chairs of the 19th annual Houston Conservation Luncheon set for Oct. 27 at the Hyatt Regency. Kim and Dan Tutcher chair the fundraiser that will feature Jeff Corwin, host of The Discovery Channel's Animal Planet and CNN Planet in Peril correspondent.

Nancy Pelosi in the house

The Secret Service buzz at Tony's Monday night was due to a private dinner taking place in the San Remo Room — a fundraiser for California congresswoman Nancy Pelosi. Attorney Dave Matthissen and his wife Andy and retired Pennzoil CEO Jim Postl and wife Beverly hosted the fundraiser where the guest list included Sheridan and John Eddie Williams, Nick Lampson, Rep. Al Green, Melanie Johnson and Tommy Fibich.

While the serious issues of preserving Social Security, the national debt and getting people back to work were on the table, it was the dessert plate that was probably most interesting for those with inquiring minds.

Pelosi, an acknowledged choco-holic, asked Tony Vallone to serve his absolute best chocolate dessert. When the time came, the attentive wait staff arrived with three chocolate souffles with chocolate sauce — a huge hit with the U.S. representative, who inquired as to where the leftovers went.

Kudos abounded for Vallone, the chef and the staff, who, according guests, delivered a delicious and seamless dinner.

The Schwarneggers are coming

No, not Maria Shriver and Arnold — rather two of their children, Patrick and Katherine. And they'll be here in the same week but we don't know yet if their travels will overlap.

The 17-year-old lad arrives in time for the Oct. 10 launch of  Fashion Houston, where he will present his Project 360 clothing line. That's a Monday. The following Saturday, Oct. 15, his 21-year-old sister headlines The Women's Fund luncheon where she will talk about her book Rock What You've Got. Her message of self-confidence and a positive body image is directed to young girls and teens.

Sight 'ems

Dana Kervin, chief political strategist for the Houston Association of Realtors, hobnobbing at Nottoway Plantation in Louisiana with former Gov. Edwin Edwards (fresh from the big house) and his bride Trini (50 years his junior). In the guv's entourage was former Lt. Gov. Bobby Freeman, a friend of Dana's from her days in Baton Rouge in the '70s. It was a genteel trek for Dana, her daughter and mother, that included a visit to St. Francisville, where they ran into John Berendt, author of Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil, at a booksigning of his new tome, My Baby Blue Jays, at a shop called Grandmother's Buttons . . .

Houston Grand Opera's new managing director Perryn Leech lunching at Tony’s with a host of fans who just couldn't contain their excitement over the upcoming trip to Paris for the opening of Across the Face of the Moon, HGO's mariachi opera, at the Theatre du Chatelet in September. Joining Perryn were Eileen Hricik, Barbara Van Postman, Irene Bourke, Joyce Greenberg, Robin Angly, Birgit van Wijk, Sylvia Sullivan and HGO special events director Guyla Pircher . . . 

Cindi Rose and attorney Roland Garcia among the notables lunching at La Griglia, where, once their plates were cleared, Cindi, a recognized talent with scissors, cut a silhouette of Roland . . .

Diane and John Connally in the crush of Houston Restaurant Weeks diners pouring into Ouisie's.

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The Arnoldy home in Aspen was setting for The Nature Conservancy gathering. Courtesy of The Nature Conservancy of Texas
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Laura Huffman, state director of The Nature Conservancy of Texas, left, with party hosts Scotty and Jana Arnoldy. Courtesy of The Nature Conservancy of Texas
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California congresswoman Nancy Pelosi was in Tony's Monday night. Courtesy of Nancy Pelosi
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Patrick Schwarzenegger and Katherine Schwarzenegger both headed to Houston.
Bride Trini Edwards and former Louisiana Gov. Edwin Edwards at Nottoway with Dana Kervin, right.