Maybe the crowd was down a tiny bit and so was the total bidding (perhaps a sign of the times), but there was still lots of buzz at the annual Palates & Paté extravaganza in November, benefiting The Acadiana Outreach Center. P.J. Naomi’s fabulous brushed-gold, diamond-encrusted fleur-de-lis cuff bracelet even set a Palates record for jewelry at $16,000. Guest emcee Ali Landry was said to be eyeing the piece for her own collection, but when it was all done, the high bidder was Chuck Vincent — a surprise for his wife Carol, who couldn’t make the auction. Imagine that, she didn’t even have to show up to get the big prize. Ali couldn’t have been more gracious. She was happy to be home for a visit while helping such a worthwhile cause. Off-stage she shared stories with Party Girl about her 16-month old daughter Estela and her recent trip to Israel, where she was scouting production venues with her film-director husband Alejandro Monteverde. “It was a life-changing experience,” she said of her tour of the Holy Land.
There was, of course, lots of great art. Painter Lue Svenson’s canvas fetched one of the highest bids I’ve ever seen for her work, thanks to new owners Jimmy and Kim Mallia, and bidding was brisk for Melissa Bonin’s piece as well. Since the crowd was a little bit smaller than in past years, Party Girl actually made the rounds and sampled every dish offered up by Acadiana’s amazing chefs. Gilbert Decourt leapt on stage and exuberantly accepted the award for Best of Show, but the food was all fabulous. Hats off to the chefs, the artists, the bidders and all who attended to support the center’s mission to help the poor in our community.
Presented by IberiaBank and Lee Michaels, this year’s PASA Golden Gala Wine Auction was held for the first time at Knight Aviation’s hangar at the Lafayette Regional Airport with a 007 James Bond theme. Bond himself made an appearance, entering the venue from a gold covered private plane (with a PASA logo on the tail!) to take on an evil villain like any good James Bond would do. A few Bond girls were in the crowd for good measure (courtesy of Gerami’s Dance Academy), and the night also featured entertainment by UL’s Ragin’ Jazz and live jazz music by the Icarus Jazz Quartet.
My good friend Ted Viator did it up just right, and the bidding was heated, raising $114,000.
The night had lots of great items up for auction, including a limited edition Omega James Bond Seamster watch, which is featured in the James Bond Quantum of Solace movie; a large format 1999 Silver Oak Cabernet Sauvignon Alexander Valley; original artwork by Brian LaFaye; and an original oil painting by my favorite local artist Melissa Bonin.
|Katie Frayard, Edward LeBlanc and Rick Frayard
||Kiki Frayard and Kim Henry|
|Coury and Sarah Moss and Liz Webb|| Irvin and Karin David
|James Bond (“Magic” Mike Dardent) and the Bond Girls (of Gerami’s Dance)||Hayden Foley, Adam Lemoine, Emily Marine, Mallory Chastant and Brittani Bass|
|Mike and Lynn Crochet||Rebecca Doucet and Pam Fontenot|
|James Bond villain (Eugene Kwarteng), Sharon Moss and Frank Gerami|| P&P emcee Ali Landry
|Andy Begneaud (P&P production committee co-chair) and Don Begneaud|
The board hopes to recover all fees paid, plus one-half, along with what could amount to hundreds of thousands in additional penalties.
Oh, the irony... or something like that.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
Hopefully he’ll be better prepared today than he was in that Feb. 20 deposition.
They came by the hundreds, arriving from all regions of the state to gather on the steps of our Capitol in protest of the Legislature’s long tradition of giving industry the go-ahead to abuse our air, our water and our coastline, all in the name of good economics.
Gov. Bobby Jindal’s recent rhetoric against President Barack Obama has failed to boost his standing among the conservative base.
Louisiana's annual legislative session begins.
The state has hired marksmen to shoot feral hogs from helicopters at two wildlife management areas in south Louisiana.
St. Patty's Day crafts
The former star of Saturday Night Live throws in his 2 cents on the Big Oil lawsuit.
Here's your daily look at late-breaking national and international news, upcoming events and the stories that will be talked about Monday, March 10, 2014:
New menu items ready for the Lenten season
The Cane Fire Film Series screens “MaidenTrip” on Monday, March 10, at the AcA.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
The vibe of the tribe done modern
The Louisiana Workforce Commission said Friday that initial claims rose to 2,125 from the previous week's total of 1,964. There were 2,887 initial claims during the comparable week in 2013.
The Board of Elementary and Secondary Education has stalled action on a $3.5 billion annual school funding formula due to state lawmakers by March 15.
The New Orleans Saints have yet to make it official as of this writing, but popular wide receiver Lance Moore has reportedly been cut by the team to free up salary-cap space on the roster.
While two medical marijuana bills are slated for the upcoming legislative session, what some Louisianans might not know is that the plant was approved for therapeutic use by state lawmakers in 1991.
The agenda is shaping up to be lighter than in previous years. But Jindal is term-limited, with fewer than two years remaining in office, and he saw his last big initiative — a proposed rewrite of Louisiana tax law — collapse without getting a vote in 2013.
Sharper has been held without bail because of an arrest warrant issued by Louisiana authorities accusing him and another man of raping two women.
Two Lafayette men have been revealed by police as the infamous duo behind a caper that shook our fair city to its core.
She’s the daughter of the legendary Johnny Cash, but she’s been a gifted artist in her own right for three decades, and she’s coming to Lafayette.
The Lafayette Parish School Board has received a second letter of demand related to last year’s insurance debacle, this time from Key Benefit Administrators claiming it’s owed $93,000 from the school system.
Acadiana's nightlife guide.
The Louisiana coastline is vanishing faster than mappers can keep track.
A bill that would have overridden local ordinances prohibiting public and private employers from discriminating against lesbian, gay and transgender people has been pulled within less than a week of being filed.
The panel that selects nominees for a controversial New Orleans area flood control board — a board that is suing more than 90 oil, gas and pipeline companies — is set to discuss legislation affecting its independence.
State prison officials cannot keep secret the seller and manufacturer of the two drugs purchased for executions at the Louisiana State Penitentiary, a federal judge ruled Wednesday.