Party meister Tilman Fertitta and his year-round Mardi Gras queen Paige Fertitta just can't help themselves when it comes to throwing the ultimate Galveston Mardi Gras bash. Saturday night's San Luis Salute to the island's South Beach-themed carnival had giddy revelers rollicking into the wee morning hours.
From the moment the curtains opened to reveal the vast ballroom, the entertainment was non-stop, beginning with the royal procession of Knights of Momus duchesses and King Frivolous.
The Philadelphia Mummers in all of their sequined and feathered glory launched the party, followed by party band Jessie's Girls and headliner Belinda Carlisle of the Go-Go's. In between, there were burlesque acts from Fertitta's Golden Nugget in Las Vegas, a swimsuit fashion show and a three-course dinner overseen by San Luis executive chef Brian Robertson.
It was the largest San Luis Salute to date, with some officials estimating the crowd at 1,300. As is tradition, the evening benefited the University of Texas Medical Branch and honored the Knights of Momus Royal Court along with a Medical Branch physician. This year, Dr. David Herndon took the spotlight.
Among those joining the Fertittas at the head table were Houston Rockets CEO Tad Brown and wife Janice, Dancie and Jim Ware, Laura Ward, Joan and Doug McLeod, Tom Koch, Diane Lokey Farb and Mark Sullivan and Giffords and Kelly along with his twin brother, astronaut Scott Kelly with Amiko Kauderer.
Notable Mardi Gras celebrants included Galveston Mayor Joe Jaworski and wife Rebecca, Houston Astros CEO George Postolos and wife Nicole, State Rep. Carol Alvarado with Manuel Silva, State Rep. Craig Eiland and wife Melissa, Texas A&M University president Bowen Loftin and wife Karen, Karen and Mike Mayell, Patsy and Greg Fourticq, Sheridan and John Eddie Williams, Cathy and Dr. Gary Brock, Sharon Adams with Bill Wright, Maria and Neil Bush, Cerón and Todd Fiscus.