Party Girl is happy to report that Acadiana parties are back in full swing. Local organizations, like the Performing Arts Society and Louisiana Crossroads, are gearing up for their fall seasons, and annual events are making their way back onto the calendar. Reminding us that it's fall (and that means good beer drinking weather), BBR Creative's Beer Bash is scheduled for Oct. 14. There's also the PASA Wine Auction coming up Nov. 11 and KRVS' Rock The Moon event Nov. 12. Party Girl can't wait!

Festival International's Amis du Festival event at Blue Moon Oct. 1 was a huge success, raising close to $4,000 and donating part of the proceeds to displaced New Orleans musicians. The stellar lineup included children's activities with guest artist Stephanie Patton, aka Renella Rose Champagne. Stephanie was in for a surprise when artist Elemore Morgan Jr. visited her table and painted a noisemaker along with the kids. Michael Juan Nunez gave an excellent performance, as did Richard Revue and a compilation of funk musicians, including Loyola music composition teacher Dr. Jimbo Walsh. And in a surprise guest appearance, singer Jacqueline sat in with the compilation band for "It's Your Thing." That girl could give Aretha a run for her money! Lil' Nathan & the Zydeco Big Timers satisfied all the zydeco appetites and closed out the festivities.

Renowned Southern artist Daren LeBlanc Tucket launched a new venture last week called PETpeople Portraits at a reception at The Frame Shop & Gallery 912 in the Oil Center. Live music by a Red Stick Ramblers combo and wine and hors d'oeuvres from à la carte made for a wonderful evening. Friends and animal lovers attended, including Darellyn Burts, Hardy Edmiston, Helen Barnes, Michael Doumit, Steve Edmiston and UL kicker Drew Edmiston. The artist will donate 5 percent of all commission revenue to various animal welfare organizations through participating veterinarians, including Toby Wexler, Andy Plauche, Donald Doiron, J.W. Lambert Jr. and Richard Broussard. Tucker's Web site, www.petpeopleportraits.com, explains it all.

And congratulations to professional speaker Aileen Bennett, who's getting ready to launch her book, Notes on Shining, which offers tips on presentation skills and public speaking. Friend Debbey Ryan was kind enough to host a pre-launch party. Aileen's heading to London for three weeks, so her official launch party takes place when she returns. The book's currently available at Amazon.com. Y'all check it out!

Party On! ' PG

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