What: Homemade Hope's Home Is Where the Heart Is Gala
Where: The Ballroom at Bayou Place
The scoop: More than 300 guests gathered for Homemade Hope’s third annual "Home Is Where the Heart Is Gala" honoring Marcia and Brig Smart. The spirited event raised more than $170,000 to support Homemade Hope’s efforts to serve homeless and at-risk children in Houston.
Former KHOU-11 TV anchor Lily Jang emceed the evening, introducing Homemade Hope students Nehemiah and Josiah, and Southside Community Center youth director Lynn Stevenson for opening remarks and a blessing for the meal.
Homemade Hope’s Brooke Bentley-Gunst then introduced the night’s honorees, who were lauded for their dedication to the Houston community. Marcia Smart is the food writer and cooking instructor behind Smart in the Kitchen and the Farm Girls Supper Club; she and her husband Brig Smart serve on numerous boards to aid those in need.
Music from DJ Kalkutta, who flew from New York City for the event, and an accompanying saxophone player kept the night moving as Homemade Hope executive director Blair Bentley thanked guests for their support.
Gala co-chairs Adam Greer and Liz Coleman oversaw a silent and live auction that brought in more than $170,000. The live auction got a bit wild: four guests ended up taking home a high-dollar African safari trip. It all added up to a record-breaking amount raised for the young non-profit, which provides weekly hands-on cooking classes to children in shelters throughout Houston.
The night began with passed appetizers and cocktails, followed by dinner from Ballroom at Bayou Place. Florals were donated by Kroger. Guests enjoyed an interactive photo booth that helped to carry the soiree into a lively after party, which featured more beats by DJ Kalkutta and dancing. Parting guests were gifted with a recipe for gluten-free granola courtesy of Marcia Smart and Smart in the Kitchen.
Who: Divya and Chris Brown; Maria and Graham Lowry; Homemade Hope board president, Lila Sharifian; Bart and Beverly Bentley; Holly and Steve Radom; Carolyn and Jake Sabat; Allison and Spencer Stasney; Margot Delaronde; Meredith Marshall; Schuyler Evans; and Elizabeth and Rob Willey.