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Riding a royal high

While the world awaits Kate Middleton's baby, a handsome prince parties with Houstonians

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22 Houston Museum of Natural Science Prince Charles dinner July 2013 Prince Charles, Christopher James, Joel Bartsch
Prince Charles, from left, Christopher James and Joel Bartsch before dinner in the Prince's country home in Wales. Photo by Gareth Everett/© Huw Evans Picture Agency
3 Houston Museum of Natural Science Prince Charles dinner July 2013 Gary Petersen and Elizabeth Petersen
Gary and Elizabeth Petersen before dinner with Prince Charles in his country home in Wales. Photo by Gareth Everett/© Huw Evans Picture Agency
9 Houston Museum of Natural Science Prince Charles dinner July 2013 Dianne Lindahl, Prince Charles and Bea Tabor
Dianne Lindahl, from left, Prince Charles and Bea Tabor before dinner in his country home in Wales. Photo by Gareth Everett/© Huw Evans Picture Agency
2 Houston Museum of Natural Science Prince Charles dinner July 2013 Kelly Montgomery and Bill Montgomery and the Very Rev. Michael Tavinor
Kelly and Bill Montgomery, left, with the Very Rev. Michael Tavinor at Prince Charles' country home in Wales. Photo by Gareth Everett/© Huw Evans Picture Agency
11 Houston Museum of Natural Science Prince Charles dinner July 2013 Prince Charles, George Lindahl, Bob Tabor
Prince Charles, from left, George Lindahl and Bob Tabor before dinner in the Prince's country home in Wales. Photo by Gareth Everett/© Huw Evans Picture Agency
1 Houston Museum of Natural Science Prince Charles dinner July 2013 Prince Charles private residence in Wales, called Llwynywermod
Prince Charles' private residence in Wales, called Llwynywermod welcomed Houston dinner guests. Photo by Gareth Everett/© Huw Evans Picture Agency
22 Houston Museum of Natural Science Prince Charles dinner July 2013 Prince Charles, Christopher James, Joel Bartsch
3 Houston Museum of Natural Science Prince Charles dinner July 2013 Gary Petersen and Elizabeth Petersen
9 Houston Museum of Natural Science Prince Charles dinner July 2013 Dianne Lindahl, Prince Charles and Bea Tabor
2 Houston Museum of Natural Science Prince Charles dinner July 2013 Kelly Montgomery and Bill Montgomery and the Very Rev. Michael Tavinor
11 Houston Museum of Natural Science Prince Charles dinner July 2013 Prince Charles, George Lindahl, Bob Tabor
1 Houston Museum of Natural Science Prince Charles dinner July 2013 Prince Charles private residence in Wales, called Llwynywermod

All eyes might have been on Kate Middleton's royal baby bump in recent weeks, but a group of Houstonians focused their attentions recently on the royal Gampy-to-be as they attended an intimate black-tie dinner with Prince Charles at Llwynywermod, his country estate in Wales.

As Elizabeth Petersen described the royal soirée, "It was a fairytale, magical night." And of the Prince, he was "so gracious, so charming, much more handsome in person with a deep resonate voice that actually made you feel comfortable."

A handful of Houston Museum of Natural Science magnanimous patrons, led by museum president Joel Bartsch, were invited to dine with the Prince and local Hereford dignitaries in a hands-across-the-ocean summit to discuss a partnership between the museum and the Hereford Cathedral, where one of the four 1217 Magna Cartas is on view. In addition to the once-in-a-lifetime dinner in Prince Charles' home, the museum group viewed the Magna Carta and the King's Writ, which served to announce the coming of the Magna Carta or as Bartsch playfully described it a "Save the Date" announcement.

 "It was a fairytale, magical night." The Prince was "so gracious, so charming, much more handsome in person with a deep resonate voice." 

Soaking in the royal hospitality along with Bartsch and Elizabeth Petersen and Gary Petersen were Dianne and George Lindahl, Kelly and Bill Montgomery, Barbara Hawthorn, the museum's vice president of development and membership, and another couple, who wish to remain unnamed.

"It was the best meal I've ever had in my life," Elizabeth Petersen said. The three-course dinner was comprised of salad, Herefordshire beef with vegetables from Prince Charles' garden and Yorkshire pudding, and a mango meringue for dessert. 

Camilla, the Duchess of Cornwall, did not dine with the Houston group as she was said to be entertaining old friends in another part of the house.

During their weekend visit, the Houstonians houseguested with Victoria and Edward Harley at their Brampton Bryan estate, which has been in Edward's family since the 1300s. The remains of the family castle stand adjacent to the current home 

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