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May 09, 2002 - Louisiana Lagniappe -- C'est si bon!

What: VOA Guild Presents Louisiana Lagniappe

Where: Hyatt Regency Downtown

When: May 9, 2002

Beneficiary: VOA's Brandon Center and Theodora House

EMCEE: Ed Greene, Channel 4

Presenting Sponsor(s): Jerome H. and Mary Rossick Kern; Betty Kuhl; and Newmont Mining Corporation

Gala Chairperson(s): Irene Zarlengo and Diane Murdy

Honorary Chairperson(s): Mary Rossick Kern

Corporate Chairperson(s): Susan Barnhill, Jo Dutton, Dianne Eddolls, Sherri Huseby, Betty Kuhl

Co-Chair(s): Toni Butler, Grace Jordan, Kathy Klugman

Committee Members: Sharon Smith, Herminia Vigil, Betty Blecker, Alberte Spencer, Carol James

Music: Vocalist Sallye McCarty and her band, Moonswings

Sponsors: Pat and Annabel Bowlen, Coors Brewing Co., Jones, A-ALL Electric, Susan Anttonen, AT&T Broadband, LaFawn Biddle, Forest Oil, The Integer Group, Carol James, Kathy Klugman, Nobel/Sysco Food Services, Shamrock Foods, Eleanore Mullen Weckbaugh Foundation

Quote of the evening: "(Hyatt General Manager) John Schafer is truly a patient man; He has a wife, three daughters AND Irene in his life." -- Emcee Ed Greene

Menu: Irene's Cajun Style Salad; seared red fish with Creole sauce; Creole-stuffed chicken breasts; stewed rice with tomatoes and onions; and creme brulee with white chocolate Mardi Gras mask

Attendance: 500

Special Thanks: Denise Kenny-Snyder, owner of Mariel; Hyatt Chef John Treusein; Salon Utopia for models' hair; Fred and Amy Kops of City Flower Market; and Maryann Yuthas for publicity

Florist: Frank Dowling and Perry Williams of Centaur Piece Designs

Models/Fashions: Spring fashions by Mariel

Blacktie Photos by: Mary Winter

 Minoo Asgary, left, with luncheon chair Diana Murdy and corpororate co-chair Betty Kuhl, who flew in for the event from Austin, Texas
Minoo Asgary, left, with luncheon chair Diana Murdy and corpororate co-chair Betty Kuhl, who flew in for the event from Austin, Texas

By Blacktie Staff

When Irene Zarlengo and Diana Murdy decide to throw a party, you can bet it will be a first-class affair.

And that's just what Lousiana Lagniappe turned out to be.

The New Orleans French Quarter theme was carried out in the Hyatt ballroom lobby with fortune tellers, fresh flower stalls, blues musicians, boutiques and even Hurricane drinks.

The Hyatt's Creole luncheon was superb, as the number of licked-clean plates attested to.

Laginappe, pronounced LAN-yap, is French for "something unexpected -- a bonus." June Owens, Govenor Bill's mother, further explained to us that in Louisiana, it can mean a piece of candy when you're dealing with children, or a little money under the table when involves a business deal.

Denise Kenny-Snyer oversaw the spirited fashion show featuring more than 70 spring outfits from her shop, Mariel's, on Larimer.

"This is more than a benefit... it's a party," said Ms. Zarlengo. "Where else do you have an opportunity to have such a good time while helping such a worthy cause?"

True to their word, Mmes. Zarlengo and Murdy brought in over $100,000 for the Volunteers of America Guild. In fact, the total take from the 500-seat event was $110,000.

The money goes to Brandon Center, VOA's shelter for abused women and children, and to Theodora House, which provides overnight shelter and safety for homeless women, many of them struggling with mental illness.

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