Shelby About Town
A pony ride, a birthday cake and more for Jason Fuller's 40th
More accustomed to standing in the shadow of Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison than in the spotlight, Jason Fuller, the senator's regional director, enjoyed all the glory Saturday night when Cindy Clifford and David Bray hosted a 40th birthday celebration in his honor. It was a welcome breather for Fuller, who has been busily dividing his time between running the Houston office and aiding in Hutchison's gubernatorial campaign.
Jeff Myhra loaned his River Oaks home for the bash attended by more than 150 political, civic and business players. They let down their hair and danced to the tunes of the I.J. Gosey Band. Think a mix of Motown and blues. Among those on the dance floor were Fuller, who boogied away his election concerns; Mayor Annise Parker's finance chair David Arpin, Curry Glassell, Metro's Russ Frank and University of Houston Alumni Association's Connie Fox.
When not dancing, guests posed for photos with the donkey and the zebra (yes, zebra), snacked on the birthday boy's favorite foods (quesadillas, tabouleh and spring rolls, anyone?) and splurged on Ben & Jerry's ice cream and birthday cake. Putting partisan politics aside and mingling congenially were City Council members Anne Clutterbuck, Oliver Pennington, Brenda Stardig and, Melissa Noriega; Joyce and Arthur Schechter; Harris County Tax Assessor Collector LeoVasquez; Ian Rosenberg; Karen and Byron Hood; John Pritchett of Austin; Eric Potts; Felix Chevalier; Channel 2's Mary Benton and Channel 13's Miya Shay.
The Houston office of HOK, the global architectural firm with offices around the world, invited friends, clients and associates to Williams Tower recently for a meet-and-greet/book signing with HOK vice president of architecture Leigh Stringer. She is making the rounds from home base in Washington D.C. promoting The Green Workplace, her recent tome on sustainability. Stringer is a nationally-recognized expert on the subject and has a hit with her blog.
Among the 150 "greeniacs" and others attending were Jay Tatum, Ford Hubbard III, Steve Parshall, Molly McIntyre Hair, Kim Vinson, Sandra Porter, Gerry and Bruce Fehn, Jeremy Bowman and Cindy Cannatella.
A little bling for spring
The break-out room at Hotel ZaZa sparkled with the delicate baubles and beads of Houston-based jewelry designer Emily Armenta on Tuesday when Tootsies brought in the successful artist to brighten the Friends of Nursing of St. Luke's Episcopal Hospital annual luncheon. Several dozen of the 330 women attending pored over the tempting eye candy that so appealed to Ericka Bagwell that she had to have a piece on the spot. Ten percent of sales that day were donated back to the nursing program, so good news for all.
Inspecting the goodies were luncheon chairs Sandy Barrett and Sheridan Williams plus Terry Rambin, Diane Lokey Farb, Betty Hrncir, Ellie Francisco, Pam Ott, Rachel Regan and Ileana Trevino. Soon they all moved to the hotel ballroom where Tootsies presented a fashion show of spring attire that had everyone thinking yachts and sandy beaches. The big hits were the rainbow-colored gowns in the finale, designs by Mignon, Jovani and Aidan Mattox.
Applauding the scene were Jana Arnoldy, Patsy Fourticq, Lora Clemmons, Rose Cullen, Carol Linn, Susan Fine, Barbara Kraft and Patti Murphy.
Taking it to the bank
It was not your typical bank opening at Mutual of Omaha on West Gray Friday evening. Who ever heard of a bank launch featuring a host of exotic animals? A kangaroo, lemur, African porcupine, wallaby, ring tail bobcat and others enriched the scene that played off of Mutual of Omaha's Wild Kingdom connection. (They were on display in the courtyard, not actually in the bank.) Congrats to president Mike Turner, who with the help of wife Terrie Turner, made this one spectacular happening.
More than 350 guests poured through the doors to sample African-inspired cuisine from Tony's catering, to snap photos of the animals and to meet Mutual of Omaha Bank CEO Jeff Schmid. Among them were Leonard Tallerine, Bob Clark, Karen and Mike Mayell, Diane Lokey Farb, Denise Bush Bahr and Philip Bahr, Cathy Brock, Jane Brennan-Martin, Amy and John Aubrey and Chris Skidmore.
Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi enjoying the weather in Hermann Park on Sunday when she, family and friends lunched on sliders and shakes on the patio at Little Big's. Monday morning, she was guest of honor at an early, hour-long coffee at the Huntingdon aerie of Sarah Morgan . . .
A whole slew of would-be cowboys kicking off the rodeo season with a rodeo happy hour at Grotto 610 including Ken Wise, Howard Hoover, Michael Briggs, Glen Miller, Maria Todd, Sonny Garcia, Mary Donna and Chuck Moceri and others . . .
Nationally-acclaimed food critic and author John Mariani sampling the fare at RDG, at Valentino and points in between . . .
Juicy Couture co-founder Gela Nash-Taylor and Hamish Bowles, Vogue European editor-at-large, bunking (separately) at the St. Regis.