Page 1

August 2011

Zoo Brew La FĂŞte Forain Live at the Garden Q&A with Dr. Elizabeth Dupont


Contents August 201 1

From the Editor . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .8 Signature Memphis . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .10 Rudi E. Scheidt invites RSVP over to his house for a cultural tour.

RSVP Watch List . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .12 With vacation season here, don’t leave these travel essentials at home.



La Fête Forain . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .14 The Dixon Gallery and Gardens toasted the arrival of the Jean-Louis Forain: La

Comédie parisienne exhibition.

STREETSEEN Heather B. Koury

StreetSeens . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .22 & 24 A U G U S T 2 0 11

He’s turning the obscure into must-visit Memphis points of interest. She’s turning on the public to architecture in a new way. StreetSeens highlight Jimmy Ogle and

Heather B. Koury.

Vox Popular . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .28


Q&A with the executive director of Hope House, Dr. Elizabeth Dupont.

Live at the Garden . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .32

14 LA FÊTE FORAIN Emily Halpern and Laura Gray Teekell

Michael McDonald and Boz Scaggs brought down the house at the Memphis Botanic Garden’s summer concert series.

32 LIVE AT THE GARDEN Tim and Tammy Alexander

Zoo Brew . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .38 The Memphis Zoo was the height of the action on Memorial Day weekend with an over-the-top beer tasting benefit.

Onsites . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .42, 44, 45 & 46 Gatherings that have earned an honorable mention.

RSVPhillippi . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .48 Sorry, Didn’t See It Dennis Phillippi explains his apprehension toward watching most TV shows.




ZOO BREW Brackie and Leigh Carter Cover Photo Lindsey and Josh Hammond at La Fête Forain Photo by Roy Haithcock

Volume XVI

Number XI

August 201 1 PUBLISHER

Roy Haithcock EDITOR


Kelly Cox Jeannie Mandelker Dennis Phillippi Suzanne Thompson EDITORIAL INTERN

Andrea Stockard ART DIRECTOR


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Nathan Berry Roy Haithcock Don Perry Steve Roberts Dominic Van Horn SENIOR ACCOUNT EXECUTIVE


Chris Pugh




Ruth Cassin RSVP Memphis is published monthly by Haithcock Communications, Inc. First class subscriptions are available for $55.00 per year. Send name and address with a check to: Haithcock Communications, Inc. 2282 Central Avenue Memphis, TN 38104 For advertising information contact Roy Haithcock Phone (901) 276-7787, ext. 101 Fax (901) 276-7785 e-mail WEB

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From the Editor


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Photo by Steve Roberts

hat an exciting summer this has turned out to be on the event front, both personally and, of course, professionally! While I could share an extensive list of gatherings I attended on behalf of RSVP, I’ll mention just a few that stood out, the first one being Zoo Brew (page 38). Oddly enough, this marked my first time at the zoo’s beer tasting, but I certainly don’t think it will be my last as this party attracted about everyone in town and delivered the fun factor. Then came the fabulous La Fête Forain (page 14). Probably any guest of the affair knew he or she was enjoying a once-in-a-lifetime experience, from the culinary creations and the atmosphere to the beautifully-dressed patrons and, oh yeah, art by Jean Louis-Forain on display in the Dixon’s gallery spaces. Art from the Impressionist era ranks as my favorite, so I pretty much spent the evening in a blissful trance, gazing up at the works in a state of awe. Piggybacking on the art topic, the Memphis Brooks Museum of Art is also hosting an equally impressive exhibition called Monet to Cézanne/Cassatt to Sargent: The Impressionist Revolution. Being a member of the media sometimes comes with perks, which I’m glad to report include being invited to see this exhibition prior to opening to the public. Even better, the special media showing occurred before work one Friday morning, so it was the perfect way to start my workday, as well as the weekend. For those interested in viewing either this exhibition or the one at the Dixon, here’s a tip: If you purchase a general museum admission ticket at the Brooks, present that same ticket at the Dixon for free admission. If seeing the kind of art displayed in museums isn’t your thing, then check out the StreetSeen features on pages 22 and 24. In this section, you’ll get to know two people (Jimmy Ogle and Heather B. Koury) with totally different professions, but who share the same love for creativity in architecture and the design that goes into objects found in the built environment. Their stories will get you thinking about discovering art in unusual places, like in the streets and on building facades. As I wrap up this column, I must mention that RSVP will produce our first wedding issue in February of next year, so flip to page 49 to find out how your wedding can be featured. Until next month, stay cool.



P.S.-In case you were wondering about the great events I attended off duty, they were the David Gray, U2 and Huey Lewis concerts, or what I call my “summer of music.”

Leah Fitzpatrick

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Retired Cotton Industry Executive/Proponent of the Arts, Music and U of M

Your greatest achievement: Opening up U.S. cotton sales to Eastern Europe in 1963 and being a major participant in opening U.S./China business relationships (1986-1990). One thing most people don’t know about you: I was the first chairman of the Memphis Arts Council. Biggest obstacle you’ve overcome: Graduating from college on my 19th birthday. Movie you could watch over and over again: Doctor Zhivago. Where you take out-of-town guests: Erling Jensen for dinner. Last book you’ve read: The Killing Ground by Jack Higgins. Ideal vacation spot: Santa Fe, New Mexico. Favorite Memphis musician: All of them. Childhood ambition: To be a lawyer. First job: Chemical engineer. Guilty pleasure: Desserts.

Photo by Steve Roberts



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La Fête Forain


ith works from noted French Impressionist Jean-Louis Forain on view in the Dixon Gallery, there was no doubt a certain “je ne sais quoi” about La Fête Forain, the preview gala for an exhibition that arrived straight from Paris. One could vouch that the uniqueness of the one-time-only event not only came from the amazing art, but from the realization that the Dixon is the only art institution in the U.S. to host Jean-Louis Forain: La Comédie parisienne, fittingly curated by the artist’s great-granddaughter, Florence ValdèsForain. Containing 130 works, 32 of which hail from the Dixon’s own Forain collection, the exhibition has been put on in partnership with Paris’ Petit Palais, where it most recently showed. Arriving to the Dixon just in time for a grand American debut, Forain’s magical drawings, paintings, pastels, watercolors and mosaics depicting scenes of Parisian life were hung throughout eight gallery spaces. Even one of Forain’s stained glass windows and sketchbooks were included. Emily Halpern, the Dixon’s associate director of communications, said, “We got all of the works up in about two weeks…aren’t they wonderful?” Indeed, the pieces impressed, so much so that partygoers engaged in lively conversation in the foyer were silenced in the galleries as they gazed at works that transported one to a different era in a foreign city. “The Ball,” “The Debutante” and “In the Wings” are just a few of the titles in a retrospective that clearly focuses on Forain’s love of people in social settings, from horse races to ballets and the opera. How fitting for this crowd of arts and entertainment lovers, which had the likes of Priscilla Presley and the Consul General of France (in Atlanta) Pascal Le Deunff and Petit Palais curator Jöelle Raineau in its midst. The celebration also brought out the glamour by offering a red carpet entrance (complete with music from the Beth Luscombe string quartet), a cocktail reception with jazz by the U of M Jazz Combo and a beautifully adorned tent set up on the Dixon lawn for the dinner hour. Tall hurricane vases with flickering candles and towering arrangements of bright pink, peach and orange flowers added to the ambiance. Chef José Gutierrez even created a three-course dinner especially for the occasion, which concluded with dancing to tunes by the Pat Patrick Orchestra, cigars and cognac on the terrace and midnight snacks of what else but ham and cheese baguettes. Très français!

French Invasion


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Martha Dodge and Henry Dodge Jr.



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Pascal and Diana Le Deunff

Story by Leah Fitzpatrick Photos by Roy Haithcock and Dominic Van Horn

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Jimmy Ogle Taking It to the Streets

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ou probably walk or drive over manhole covers every day without paying them any notice, however there’s one Memphian who has made a point to stop, study and photograph manhole covers, specifically in the downtown area, since 1998. For Jimmy Ogle, the manhole covers hold aesthetic and historic value, enough so that locals and visitors alike have taken interest in the subject by coming along for Ogle’s free tours. So far, he has found 12 generations of the openings used to access utility vaults and has identified nine foundries, with one in India, utilized for the construction of the roughly 4,000 downtown covers. Ogle says, “Some of the covers are more than 100 years old—I found one from 1897.” Having worked at Mud Island River Park, the Rock ‘n’ Soul Museum, on a river boat and currently at the Riverfront Development Corporation, Ogle has been immersed in downtown sites and businesses for quite some time, and along the way, he developed into a bona fide storyteller. People began putting in requests for tours, and in 2008, he took his manhole cover tour to the Downtown Memphis Development Commission’s (formerly the Center City Commission) “Downtown Alive” series, though he’d first proposed a river or a boat tour that were both shot down. In three days, he put together a walking tour that spanned from Union to Riverside to Third Street, a stretch that allowed people to not only see manhole covers, but Cotton Row, the Mississippi, the seven flags on Mud Island, Howard’s Row and places of music. “Ninety people showed up for that first Union Avenue Manhole Cover and History Tour, so Leslie [Gower] at the Downtown Memphis Development Commission said I could do a tour on whatever I wanted after that,” he says. Next up was a Mississippi River Tour and a Memphis Land Tour, which bring to light bits of trivia that Ogle delights in telling, like when he points out that Memphis is the highest piece of land on the Mississippi between Cairo, Illinois and Natchez, Mississippi. His crash courses in everything Memphis, which he mainly coordinates on his own now, have grown to include visits to Gayoso Bayou and the Riverfront Trolley Loop, to name a few of the locations he heavily researches before adding them to his schedule (found at He assures, “I always double source or triple source my facts, and I’ve probably read over 300 books on Memphis history. I’m trying to get the stories right because there are a lot of myths out there.” While August brings Ogle to his usual spots, from Cotton Row to Adams, Madison and Monroe Avenues, fans will be happy to know that he’s added a new spot to the mix with the November Sixth Street Tour on November 6 at 2 p.m. First-timers or repeat visitors, just remember not to refer to Ogle as a historian. Ogle insists, “I just want to be called a life-long Memphian.” Story by Leah Fitzpatrick Photo by Steve Roberts

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he recession might have had a negative impact on architects’ business prospects, but the economic climate hasn’t dampened their spirits, at least not from the sound of the Architecture Month happenings slated for September. Members of the local chapter of The American Institute of Architects are behind the diverse series of events aimed at engaging the general public about all facets of architecture, from design in furniture to that of private residences and businesses. Interestingly enough, the Memphis AIA group’s executive director, Heather B. Koury, can identify with Architecture Month’s target audience. “I have an academic background in arts administration and worked as a nonprofit consultant before being hired as AIA’s executive director, so I came in not knowing a lot about the profession of architecture,” Koury shares. At the helm of the AIA chapter for nine years now, Koury came in with a passion for architecture, the arts and community building, however she did carry the assumption that architects were people who dressed and acted a certain way that made them stand apart from the rest of us. She says that her preconceived vision was superficial and has since found architects to be easy to converse with and genuinly concerned about improving neighborhoods, though maybe with different approaches. “Architecture affects people more than any other art form out there, so the dialogue architects have with citizens must be constant,” Koury explains. In this vein, Koury has been successful at furthering the relationship between those who create the built environment and those who just live in it by gearing 70 percent of AIA’s programming for the public. Continuing education and professional development opportunities are still in abundance for members, but the focus of the 58-year-old chapter’s offerings has shifted so that nonmembers can become better advocates for architecture. Cue Architecture Month, which Koury introduced eight years ago to bring the public together. “When we started Architecture Month, people weren’t sure they were invited, so it took us a few years before realizing it had to have its own site [] for people to feel like it was theirs,” she says. A few programs associated with the special month are Conversation and Cocktails (Wednesdays in September) for the public to hear from local artists on how the built environment inspires them, an Architect Home Tour (September 17) at the Lewis-Markell residence and the inaugural Iconic Design Exhibit and Auction (September 25). In addition, Friends of AIA recently launched lunITECTS, a nonprofessional group for those interested in architecture and design. It has mostly been word-of-mouth, but has drawn consistently increasing crowds to monthly gatherings, beginning with the first tour at the AnnesdaleSnowden mansion. The next event will be an architect-led tour of Broad Avenue on August 17 at 5:30 p.m., starting at the T Clifton Art Gallery. Koury adds, “Anything we can do to make people feel like architecture isn’t an intangible art form is a great thing.” Story by Leah Fitzpatrick Photo by Steve Roberts

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Vox Popular Q&A with Dr. Elizabeth Dupont


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RSVP: What sparked your interest about working for Hope House?



Dr. Dupont: I had a child when I was 44 and went to work about four months after he was born, but things had changed in my job, so I quit. I thought that life is too short, so I’ll be a stay-at-home mom. I did all the things they tell you to do as a stay-at-home mom, like volunteering, and I soon learned that being a stay-at-home mom wasn’t for me. Then, a friend said that I really needed to apply for this job at Hope House. You can’t say no to this friend, so I submitted my application and sent my resume, and they called me for an interview. Well, I came here, and there was a little girl I met. My son was almost 2 at that time, and you find out that when you become a parent everything changes for you about children; someone said, “Now it becomes personal.” So, this little girl in the room had a runny nose that was all over the place, and though I know that children at that age can’t stand to have their faces wiped, I instinctively grabbed a wad of tissue and started wiping her face. Amazingly, she stood there perfectly still because she was so desperate for a touch that she would tolerate me wiping her nose. I then thought, “Oh, I want to work here.” I fell in love with the children, and I also liked the people who interviewed me. I’ve now been here 12and-a-half years, and it all started with a child who touched my heart. RSVP: How has Hope House evolved since you came on board? Dr. Dupont: First of all, there was only one house, and now we have three. The main thing though is we have expanded our services. For example, our child service group expanded into play therapy. Shelby County has the highest rate of children who have been expelled from a preschool out of any county in the U.S., and we were not immune from that at Hope House. Since we opened this house for

Photos by Don Perry

s executive director of Hope House, Dr. Elizabeth Dupont has been instrumental in changing the lives of numerous children and adults affected by or infected with HIV and AIDS by equipping them with the tools and support to become optimistic and productive citizens. Often given harsh criticism by their peers and even loved ones, the people Hope House serves desperately need the attention they often don’t receive from their everyday relationships. RSVP editor Leah Fitzpatrick met up with Dr. Dupont at the Hope House campus in Midtown and ventured into one of the daycare rooms to witness just how much a loving attitude can make a Hope House client’s day.

play therapy, we’ve now gone 5-andhalf-years not having to release any child for bad behavior because we work with the child in play therapy and then work with the mother in counseling. We have support groups we’ve added and the housing program [Tenant Based Rental Assistance Program], so we’ve expanded services to the children and to the entire family. Another issue that’s changed is when I first started working here, and people found out that I worked around children and adults affected or infected with HIV and AIDS, they wouldn’t shake my hand. I’ve not encountered that in a couple of years, but our parents still face tremendous prejudice and stigma. RSVP: How many adults and children does Hope House serve annually? Dr. Dupont: We serve about 70 children a year, and probably a similar number if you include parents and caregivers. What happens is we only have enough space for children who are eligible for our services, but when we have an opening, Maria, our social worker, will call some of our referral sources, such as St. Jude, and say that we have an opening at whatever age level, and they’ll refer us some children. Sometimes, St. Jude will have a family, and they ask if we can please work this family in because they would really benefit from our services, so we’ll see if we can move the children around age-wise and move the classrooms the best we can to accommodate them. RSVP: How many of Hope House’s clients are HIV positive? Dr. Dupont: All of our parents are HIV positive, but not all of our children. We say our children are impacted by HIV and poverty. A


majority of our children are not HIV positive. I think last year only two of our children were HIV positive. The infection rate is growing among young women, but not in children because of prenatal care and education.

RSVP: What are some hardships that Hope House faces that the general public may not know about? Dr. Dupont: We have a fabulous donor base, but most nonprofits have a donor base based on people who use their services. That doesn’t happen with us. Take, for example, the American Cancer Society, which has support from people who might have had cancer or from people whose families have been affected by cancer. Our families are in poverty, and a few who have gotten out of poverty have reached out to support us, but we don’t have that huge donor base that naturally comes from those who receive our services. Our people donate to us because of a real love for our children in this community. Like everybody else right now, we could serve more children, but we had to cut some of our staff due to the economy. We are still working to get that up,


Dr. Dupont: We have a national accreditation with the National Association for the Education of Young Children, and the County helped us achieve this accreditation in 2008. That was great because it assures the public we’re following the highest level of standards for early childhood education. Then, we have our three stars, which are the highest in Tennessee, for every category ranking in the state [through the TN Star-Quality Child Care Program]. That’s also important for people to know that we provide quality daycare because I think when I first started people saw us as a place for babysitting, and not true daycare.

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RSVP: Can you please tell me about Hope House’s accreditation(s)?


and, in fact, the Plough Foundation has offered a $250,000 challenge, and we have until December 2012 to meet it. We would use that money toward income for staff and a teaching position. RSVP: Will Hope House take on more clients in the future, and, if so, how many could the organization accommodate? Dr. Dupont: We’re going to add eight more spots in our classroom, which will probably give us 16 more children and 16 more adults, at least.

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RSVP: Can you share with me some of the other social service programs Hope House offers?



Dr. Dupont: We have a weekly support group for our parents, and it’s exciting because it’s also for other members of the HIV community, so we’ve extended our services beyond our HIV children and families here. Fourteen to 15 people come to that group weekly. Another thing is our housing program. It’s the Tenant-Based Rental Assistance Program through the City of Memphis, and what that means is one-third of a client’s income goes toward their rent, and then they have a voucher for the remaining rent through a special grant, the HUD [Housing and Urban Development] grant, again through the City. Then, the two years they’re in this program, they need to be doing something to make their economic situation different, such as getting a GED. We also have a program called Financial Peace. It’s Dave Ramsey’s program, and we require families in our housing program to go over that. Another thing we have is a Violence Prevention Parent Training Program, and it’s 13 weeks for three hours a week. It’s required of all parents whose children come here on scholarship and is great because it reminds them of their values, their history and what they want for their children. Parents don’t want to come at first, but they end up loving it. Another neat program is the Buddy Up Program, and the buddies come once a week to do things with the children. Men are paired with boys and women with girls, but it’s not a mentoring program because the children are too young. The program takes place right here on our campus, and a social worker is usually present for the first few meetings. They’re usually inside, but buddies who have been here longer and feel comfortable will go on the playground or bring lunch for the children. RSVP: What are some other ways people can volunteer at Hope House? Dr. Dupont: We need some more boy buddies, and they can be 18 or older. We also have our special events, like Theatre for Hope, that people can volunteer for. We have volunteers who come work on the yard at Hope House, and we can always use classroom helpers and “celebrity” readers, which entails reading, once a month or whenever you feel like it, to our children, who think anyone who walks through the doors is a celebrity. The University of Memphis and Rhodes

College have provided us with some fabulous volunteers, so I can’t say enough good things about their students. Then, St. Mary’s Episcopal School provided us a $5,000 grant for our play therapy room, and their girls volunteer. RSVP: What has been one of your greatest challenges during your tenure? Dr. Dupont: One of my greatest challenges is asking people for money. Some people you can ask for money, but you hate to, for example, call a donor who has pledged money because I’m sure he or she knows that I’m calling because I haven’t received their pledge this year. Most people you have a relationship with and always feel like you hate to ask them for money, but the reason I’m asking for money is because I believe in what I’m doing. RSVP: What is an experience that’s left a lasting impression on you at Hope House? Dr. Dupont: I think it’s our mom who told us that her family only allowed her to eat on paper plates because she had HIV. She was a speaker at one of our fund-raisers and to hear her story and to see her change…she dropped out of school when she was 12. She worked to help support her grandmother who became ill. Then, she went through our GED program and got her GED in less than three months. She is so intelligent and says she wants to get her bachelor’s degree. She has been an inspiration to me, and sometimes when I get upset about things that happen in my life, I think of her and the things that have happened to her. She got HIV through a rape, and if you meet her, there’s not a bitter bone in her body. I can’t get her out of my head. RSVP: If you could tell the general public only one thing about Hope House, what would it be? Dr. Dupont: Our children are beautiful and could use your help. Their lives can change, and there’s real hope. We were founded by the Junior League of Memphis, but the reason they called it Hope House was because their purpose was to provide hope to people with the least hope available to them: people in poverty and with HIV and AIDS, which was much more of a death sentence at that time.


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Whitney Bruehl and Aimee Williams

Dr. Gary and Jenny Earhart



or the third concert of the popular Live at the Garden summer concert series, now in its 11th year, the Memphis Botanic Garden brought blue-eyed soul legends Michael McDonald and Boz Scaggs to the stage. Duncan-Williams, Inc. served as presenting sponsor. A little later into the show, a pleasant breeze would accompany the sunset, but for the moment, the stage-side VIP tent was an oasis of cooled air and deep shade. In fact, it was so refreshingly cool and dim that a spread by B.B. King’s and Itta Bena was laid beneath chandeliers and enjoyed by candlelight. And a bar provided by Southwestern Beverage Distributing made sure that VIPs were fortified for a good time. Jerry and Susan Edmonds, both breezily attired in summer whites, were enjoying the barbecue and three-bean salad with feta and herbs. “We love Live At The Garden!” said Susan. “This is going to be a great show. Sherry [Misner, co-director of the series] always does an amazing job.” Jay Myers and his wife Maureen saw Michael McDonald perform in Memphis several years ago and were excited about repeating the experience. “My wife is a big fan,” explained Jay, with a humorous twinkle in his eye. “Sherry made it possible for her to meet McDonald backstage last time around. I think Maureen figured she wouldn’t even have to change her monogrammed sweaters!” Outside, on the grounds, concertgoers who had secured soldout table seating were finding their friends and arranging their al fresco refreshments. Bob Pierce and his group brought class to the grass by serving up libations in “redneck wine glasses”—essentially Mason jar stemware—made by Pierce himself. He even had a photo on his phone of Morgan Freeman enjoying a sip from one of the glasses. There was almost the feeling of a reunion as Patrick and Tara Horton spotted a friend who turned out to share an alma mater with their tablemate Elizabeth Alrutz. Elizabeth and her husband Doug Alrutz discovered Live At The Garden just two years ago and now intend to make it a summer tradition. “It’s one of the best times around!” Elizabeth said.

Dr. Nancy Chase and Robert Blanchard

Sherry Misner and Bobby McGregor

Story by Kelly Cox Photos by Don Perry See all the party photos at Password: RSVP Debbie and David Browne

Morgan Maness and Ali Slott

Pat and Donna Hoffman

Beth Amos, Richard and Trish Spore and Katie and Buddy McDaniel

Beth Flanagan and Toni Boland

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Zoo Brew


A Lesson in Beerology


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Darris and Shawn Ware

Jessica Tartera and Will Muller



he Memphis Zoo delights many folks during the day, and at night as well, according to the turnout of 3,500 beer nerds at the spring installment of Zoo Brew. Though the party took place past the more than 2,800 animals’ bedtimes, their presence was not forgotten, as proceeds of $85,000 will go toward the zoo’s day-to-day operations, including animal care, conservation and education programs. Southwestern Beverage Distributing signed on again as a presenting sponsor, along with Mahaffey Tent and Party Rentals, and they delivered quite the setup. Thirty-seven tasting booths had been positioned throughout much of the grounds, with a stage assembled in the main plaza for the Kathryn Stallins Band, which delivered a stellar repertoire of danceable hits. To help attendees better navigate the festivities, volunteers like Cathy Dalfiume stood at the entrance and handed out maps, a much-appreciated gesture considering the event’s scope and the need to be selective with so many available tasting choices. The featured suds made for a diverse selection, from origin to classification. International beers came from Belgium, Canada, England and Germany, while stateside samples ran the gamut from breweries in New York, Massachusetts, Vermont, Maryland and Pennsylvania to those in California, Oregon and Louisiana. Boscos and Ghost River Brewery represented Memphis well with their selection of golden ale, witbier and brown ale, to name a few. As for other types of beer, there were lagers, ambers, pale ales, wheat beers, stouts, pilsners and several more that attendees willingly tried and learned about thanks to knowledgeable pourers on hand. Volunteer Steve Russell, at the North Coast California table, urged a patron unsure of which beer to choose, “Try the Old Rasputin and notice its complexity.” After a sip, the guest agreed he’d made the right choice by trying a Russian Imperial Stout style of beer. Signs with the words “More Beer” pointed attendees in the right direction throughout the fund-raiser, which seemed the perfect way to jumpstart Memorial Day weekend. For those that missed out on the fun, the fall Zoo Brew takes place September 2.

Bryan and Lauren Bowman

Charles Mitchell and Casey Katz

Story by Leah Fitzpatrick Photos by Don Perry See all the party photos at Password: RSVP Robert and Lisa Giardino

Andrea and Jimmy Cash

Daniel and Amanda Klein

Caroline Vestal, Hallie McKay, Chelsey Darden and Katherine Veazey

Lacie Glover and Will Cook


Robert Gargiulo, Amy Beth Dudley, Gina Deutsch and Madelyn Gray

Pam Moulton, Lauren Pierotti and Melinda Dixon

Rachel Jackson and Meagan Gonzalez

Ray and Audree Hardiman



Lindsey and Nick May

Don Niego, Emily Sturgill and Brent Dickenson

Joe and Sarah Moske

Drs. Purvisha and Dharmesh Patel

Tim and Cathy Dalfiume with Karen Ford

SEPTEMBER 13-18 2011 To purchase tickets, call 525-3000 or visit The Orpheum Box Office, The Booksellers at Laurelwood, Ticketmaster, or visit our website at

The 2011-2012 Broadway Season is sponsored by

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Raise the Roof Party Playhouse On the Square Art Auction Whiskered Wine with Petcasso Art Salvation Army Annual Dinner


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Alex Coleman, Leigh Anne Touhy and Michael Oher at Salvation Army Annual Dinner

Rose Jackson Flenorl and Michael Ducker at Salvation Army Annual Dinner



he Raise the Roof Party served as a grand opening and a fund-raising event for FedExFamilyHouse. Guests raised more than $150,000 during the gathering, hosted by Diane and Fred Smith and Susan and Alan Graf, for the FedExFamily House, considered a home away from home for families at Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital. The evening also featured a live auction and music by Bethany and Kevin Paige. The 34th annual Playhouse on the Square Original Art Auction had more than 160 artists contributing one-of-a-kind pieces for a live and silent auction. Auctioneers Gene Katz, Mike McLaren and Michael Detroit created a party atmosphere for everyone from the serious art buyer to the auction novice. An admission price of $25 was deducted from each guest’s art purchase, and hors d’oeuvres and beverages were complimentary. And, no party would be complete at Playhouse without a special performance, which this year came courtesy of the cast of Ragtime. T Clifton Art Gallery was the place to be for a purr-iceless evening tasting dog and cat labeled wines donated by Stellar Cellar and Victor Robilio Company. Also offered were tasty treats for guests to pair with their wine choices. Pet themed art and jewelry were featured by Valerie Berlin, Angi Cooper and Peggy Foster. Proceeds from the event benefit Mid-South Spay & Neuter Services, an organization dedicated to reducing pet overpopulation by offering affordable and often free spay and neuter surgeries to the community. Nearly 650 people packed the ballroom at Hilton Memphis for the Salvation Army Annual Dinner, which was co-chaired by FedEx Chief Operation Officer Michael Ducker and Rose Jackson Flenorl, manager of Social Responsibility for FedEx. Ducker made opening remarks followed by an invocation by Flenorl. After a three-course dinner, NFL player Michael Oher spoke about his new book, I Beat the Odds, following the testimonials of several individuals whose lives have been changed with the Salvation Army’s help.

Mark Upchurch, Kevin Dean and Conrad Gibson at Playhouse on the Square Original Art Auction

Carroll and Christine Todd at Playhouse on the Square Original Art Auction

Story Submitted and by Suzanne Thompson Photos Submitted and by Larry Kuzniewski and Suzanne Thompson Jan and Josh David with Steve and Catherine Berger at Salvation Army Annual Dinner Katie Gwin Russell and Mike Jenkins at Whiskered Wine with Petcasso Art

Terri Walker and Sheila Harrell at Raise the Roof Party

Susan and Alan Graf, Anise and Ron Belz and Mike Glenn at Raise the Roof Party

Melanie Murray, Tracey Shanklin, Stacy Early, Gitanja Williams and Debbie Merino at Whiskered Wine with Petcasso Art



Paws for Art Woman’s Exchange Art Opening Go Red for Women “Girls Night Out” Shell Out for the Arts


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Leslie Herman, Nora Boswell and Denise Stewart at Woman’s Exchange Art Opening

Barbara and Allie Prescott with Scottie Cobb at Woman’s Exchange Art Opening



Amina Dilawari and Erik Morrison at Shell Out for the Arts

n an attempt at play-on words, local FM100 personality Ron Olson exclaimed, “I’m nervous as a cat,” as he stepped up to auction off some 40 pieces of art for the benefit of an organization all about helping injured and abused cats and dogs—the Humane Society of Memphis & Shelby County. Olson’s comment received hearty laughter from the crowd assembled at WaterWorks for the inaugural Paws for Art, which included works by Betsy Bird, Paul Edelstein, Babette Lombardo, NJ Woods, Maria Garrett and even Olson, a contributor of “Bamboo Kitty” and “Blue Cats.” The Art Center donated canvases for the artists, who mingled with guests during a reception to explain their creative interpretations of their favorite animal or pet experience. Over at the Woman’s Exchange Gallery, the nonprofit organization that’s devoted to “Helping Others to Help Themselves” hosted the Woman’s Exchange Art Opening. With more than 100 works by 30-plus artists on display, there was no shortage of variety. Leslie Herman chaired the event with the help of Nora Boswell (show manager) and Denise Stewart (show designer), while Chef “Rev” Bailey and What a Dish Catering supplied tasty hors d’oeuvres. Woman’s Exchange president Scottie Cobb said, “This is our second year for the show, and we’re glad to say we’ve made it an annual affair.” Women, and a few men, united at Hilton Memphis to combat heart disease, which is the number one killer of females in Memphis. The setting was that of the Go Red for Women “Girls Night Out” fund-raiser, hosted by the Mid-South chapter of the American Heart Association. Festivities included a vendor expo filled with health screenings and shopping opportunities, a fashion show emceed by 94.1 KQK’s Karen Perrin and Go Red for Women survivor stories told by Barb Poier, Tammy Ray and Temika Grant. Tina Dickinson-Jones and Valerie Morris co-chaired. ArtsMemphis invited music lovers to bring their blankets and lawn chairs to perhaps the city’s coolest outdoor venue, the Levitt Shell, for what has become one of the nonprofit’s most anticipated benefits: Shell Out for the Arts. Attendees not only got to hear some awesome blues and funk from Papa Grows Funk out of New Orleans, but they also enjoyed summer fare of grilled hamburgers, watermelon salad and cookies from Whole Foods, as well as lots of chilled wine and beer. Proceeds of $3,400 will go toward funding arts groups, arts education and community outreach efforts. Story and photos by Leah Fitzpatrick

Daniel Hill, Aaron and Katherine Petree, Katie Maxwell and Andrew Buzan Jennifer Vafinis, Melanie Hamilton, Angela Leigh, Dr. Purvisha Patel and Jennifer Kinkade at Shell Out for the Arts at Go Red for Women “Girls Night Out”

Tim and Maria Garrett at Paws for Art Auction

Richard and Kris Nicholas with Ron Olson at Paws for Art Auction

Frank and Babette Lombardo at Paws for Art Auction

Tina Dickinson-Jones, Dr. Dharmesh Patel, Valerie Morris and Meghan Heimke at Go Red for Women “Girls Night Out”



Young at Art White Party Play for Jay Girls Inc. Celebration Luncheon Golf Ball embers of the Dixon Gallery and Garden’s Young at Art were invited to “say hello to summer” at the MYAA’s first White Party. Asked to wear white dress, YAA

Grace Knight and Rachel Hess at Young at Art White Party

Tamara Dupwe and Elizabeth Davis at Young at Art White Party

Story by Leah Fitzpatrick and Andrea Stockard Photos by Leah Fitzpatrick, Libby Huff and Andrea Stockard

Scott Shanker, Jill Uiberall Shanker and Andie and Michael Uiberall Kevin Brewer, Sandy Robertson, John Pugliese, Christina Tumbelson and Cindy Brewer at Play for Jay at Play for Jay

Andrea Pointer and Sharon Taylor at Girls Inc. Celebration Luncheon

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Cheryl Citrone and Deborah Hester-Harrison at Girls Inc. Celebration Luncheon


Michelle Johnson and Amy Hutchins at Young at Art White Party

members showed up at the Dixon’s Hughes Pavilion in linen, sundresses and accessories all containing the requested hue. With hot weather comes the arrival of cool drinks, which this night came in the way of Champagne, mojitos and sauvignon blanc, to name a few, and sweet tunes came courtesy of DJ Moi. Beale Street was livelier than normal with Play for Jay, a fund-raiser honoring late restaurateur Jay Uiberall, in full swing at Alfred’s. Destination King, the Memphis Grizzlies and the Uiberall family teamed up with Alfred’s to host the benefit for the Jay Uiberall Legacy Fund, which provides scholarships for students of the Kemmons Wilson School of Hospitality and Resort Management; this night, Kiva Tabor was the scholarship recipient. During the evening, Robb Fischer, welcomed everyone to the event, while Dan Murrell, Kevin Kane and the Uiberall family also gave remarks to a crowd kept happy with casino-style games, lots of Southern fare, a live auction and music by Bethany and Kevin Paige. Not only did Girls Inc. celebrate its 65th anniversary this year, but the nonprofit, which is dedicated to helping inspire girls to be strong, smart and bold, recently honored three female leaders at its annual Celebration Luncheon. Christ United Methodist Church hosted the occasion for 500 guests, and church members even helped prepare lunches of grilled chicken and Caesar salad, with a strawberry cake topping off the menu. During the program, “Strong, Smart & Bold Awards” were awarded to Kim Cherry for the Strong Award, Catherine Battle for the Smart Award and Barbara Holden for the Bold Award. The Boys & Girls Clubs of Greater Memphis held its largest fund-raiser, Golf Ball, on The Peabody rooftop. Sponsors, golfers and Boys & Girls Club staff joined together for music, great food and wine to kick off the nonprofit’s two-day golf tournament, with Methodist Healthcare serving as the tournament’s largest sponsor. While dinner was being served, Willie Gregory, director of community and business relations for Nike, spoke about the importance of the fund-raiser by saying, “Our young people are the most important investments in our portfolio.” His speech was followed by one from Shannon Brown, a senior vice president and chief human resources officer at FedEx who has been a club member for the past 44 years. The agenda concluded with a live auction featuring items like island trips and tickets to various golf tournaments.

Shannon Brown and Willie Gregory at Golf Ball

Vincent Borello and Diane Stockard at Golf Ball



Sphinx Queen’s Luncheon Boll Weevil Party Carnival Memphis Service Awards and Fashion Show Princess Ball hen the Queen of Sphinx Suzanne Shelton invites W Carnival King John Dobbs, Queen Kate Smith and all Grand Krewe queens to lunch, guests wear garments

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Bud Cowgill and Cookie Jones at Boll Weevil Party

Alfie Morrison, Paige Phillips and Bailey Phillips at Boll Weevil Party



fit for the royal occasion. In keeping with tradition, ladies topped off their outfits with elegant hats at the Grand Krewe of Sphinx Queen’s Luncheon at the Racquet Club of Memphis. Lunch included a fashion show featuring styles by All About Weddings and Chico’s Laurelwood. Models strutted down the runway to the music of Southern Fried Jazz and showed how beautiful the clothes looked on real women. Jamille Laughlin’s family’s heirloom hats, nicely displayed, also caught the crowd’s eyes. Master of Ceremonies Andrew Douglas kept the event moving as guests dined on Caesar salads and Mediterranean chicken. Sphinx King Hooper Jones joined his queen on the dais. The Secret Order of the Boll Weevils held its annual event as a precursor for Carnival week at Rhitt’s on Rex. While the weather was toasty outside, the infamously mischievious Boll Weevils did what they do best, which is get the party smokin’ hot inside. Fresh Slices catered a buffet of heavy appetizers, and the Boll Weevils danced with guests and entertained the crowd with their antics to the tunes of Almost Famous. A new event to the group that is known to “party with a purpose” is the Carnival Memphis Service Awards and Fashion show, which was held at Hilton Memphis. Lunch of sesame-encrusted chicken served over an orange mango salad with citrus dressing was served as Carnival Memphis executive director Ed Galfsky announced that the luncheon would be an annual event. The Noreen Cathey Mallory Award was presented to Carol Prentiss, and the Youth Leader of the Year Award was given to St. Agnes student Silvia Escobedo Davila. Guests enjoyed dessert while watching the fashion show, which featured models strutting the runway to ‘20s-era musical selections while wearing Carnival couture from Babbie’s Closet. Parents, friends and members of the Carnival Memphis court attended the Princess Ball at the Memphis Hunt and Polo Club to welcome the young ladies into the realm. Sugar bacon was set out on the bars and an hors d’oeuvre buffet was available for those who wanted to complement the club’s signature fried oysters. A trumpet heralded the commencement of the program, and Carnival Memphis president Jess Wesberry made opening remarks prior to the pages marching in before the Carnival king and queen. Deejay Mark Anderson and Party Train provided music for the revelers.

Amy Balthrop and George Gates at Princess Ball

Summer and Cecil Godman at Princess Ball

Story and photos by Jeannie Mandelker and Suzanne Thompson Kaye Hearon, Judy Finley, Andrew Douglas, Suzanne Shelton and Jamille Laughlin at Sphinx Queen’s Luncheon

Jess and Mary Lee Wesberry at Carnival Memphis Service Awards and Fashion Show

Ann Ince and Jill Cox at Carnival Memphis Service Awards and Fashion Show

Mary and Charles Stewart, Amy Turner and Kristie McCann at Sphinx Queen’s Luncheon

Wanda Barzizza and Kathy Sapp at Sphinx Queen’s Luncheon


After Hours A photo collage of the latest business happenings

John Robshaw Trunk Show & Open House at Rêverie

Bubbly Beauty Happy Hour Hosted by Barefoot Bride & Midtown Acupuncture

SportsBall Kick-Off at Kooky Canuck

Karlee Hickman and Jessica Puckett at Midtown Acupuncture

Brad Carson, Shawn and Lana Danko and Adrian Heuaing at Kooky Canuck

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Laura Echtenkamp and Chris Pugh at Rêverie

Mike and Joelle Scholl at Barefoot Bride

Brian Johnson and Lisa Taylor at Kooky Canuck

Trista Dobkins and Amy Perry at Midtown Acupuncture

Frederik Kolderup and Kari Young at Kooky Canuck

R.C. Johnson, Al LaRocca and Josh Pastner at James Davis

Susan George, Sylvia Turner and Kim Davis at Kooky Canuck

Lisa Thomas, Christen Watts and Doug Thomas at Rêverie

Fish Fry at James Davis

Pam Haithcock and Tarik Black at James Davis




By Dennis Phillippi


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irst off, let me make one thing clear: I do not watch the news. Before you start judging me, what I’m saying is I do not watch the television news. Unless there is a major, and I mean major, national news story, I do not watch the national news. Unless there is a major, and it would have to be really major, local news story, I do not watch the local news. That may sound strange coming from someone who is fairly frequently on the news commenting on, well, the news, and who counts among his best friends people who work in the news business, but I find it all too depressing. This is particularly true on the national level, where the news seems sort of unseemly. How is someone I don’t know being put on trial for something that has nothing to do with me news? In what way does this affect me? Don’t get me wrong. I am aware of the happenings in the world. It’s just that I get that information the way I choose, which is almost entirely through reading it. In a glance, I can tell if a story is about something that matters to me, and not something engineered to alarm me. That’s what headlines are for. And I’ll admit that I get a lot of my news from Jon Stewart. He makes me laugh, which is more than I can say for Nancy Grace, who makes me cringe. This brings me to my point, as I don’t watch coverage of sensational trials, it is uninteresting to me to discuss them and lately I’ve been treated as some kind of pariah because I refuse to have an opinion about them. This even happened recently on, of all things, television. I was on a local morning show, where the topic was one of these trials and I said that not only did I not have an opinion about it, but I didn’t understand why anyone else did either. Yikes, was I pilloried for that one. Not on the air, but rather later, when people wanted to criticize me for not criticizing the people involved. This escalated into arguments among other people because I refused to argue about it, and before I knew it, others were shouting all around me about the very thing I had argued against people arguing about. The worst part of all of this is the shouting. My friend, comedian Daniel Hooper, recently said that being louder doesn’t make you any righter, and I com-

pletely agree, but there seems to be a new vigor to the types who think that they can win a disagreement simply by shouting down anyone who disagrees. I also don’t watch reality television. Why anyone would watch obviously manipulated footage of obnoxious women they don’t know behaving ill mannerly is baffling to me. What compels anyone to spend hours watching strangers locked in

That’s a soap opera, and I stopped watching those when Luke and Laura got off the Cassadine island with the Ice Princess. buildings together, or fading celebrities desperately trying to scramble up some shred of relevance is inexplicable. Whenever I tell someone that the only reality television I watch is sports, they look at me like I’ve just announced that I don’t use electricity. Here’s another one: What is so interesting to people about forensics? All of these shows about solving grizzly murders with graphic depictions of what happens to the victims don’t feel like entertainment to me. They feel like they’re going to make me sick. I’m sure that the characters on these shows must do something else besides analyze blood spatterings, but they haven’t in the few instances when I’ve been forced to watch. They all just seem to look at gross things and make gruesome pronouncements. I can get that at my next doctor’s appointment. Oh yeah, the doctor shows, that’s another bunch I skip. There seem to be two kinds: the kind about brilliant doctors who look at gruesome things and make miraculous diagnoses, or the kind where everyone at the hospital is dating everyone else at the hospital and at the end of the

season there’s some kind of big explosion that may or may not kill off characters whose contracts have run out. That’s a soap opera, and I stopped watching those when Luke and Laura got off the Cassadine island with the Ice Princess. I will not explain that reference. If you got it, you understand that it’s too embarrassing to explain. There are very few sitcoms worth watching. For a few years there, it seemed like they all starred Jim Belushi, but that had to have been my imagination. Now they all seem to be reducing their own characters to such broad caricatures that they are virtually live action cartoons. Ooh, ooh, I almost forgot the worst, and by far highest rated of the bunch: I do not watch televised talent competitions. I have really gotten hammered on this one because I refuse to sit with people and get hammered watching children sing, teenagers dance or adults do all of the above before weeping while a celebrity I’ve long since lost interest in either praises them or destroys their most cherished dream in front of millions of people. Either way, it’s as depressing as a high school reunion. There are a lot of reasons why I don’t watch these things, but the main reason is that I don’t want to. I don’t choose to make myself miserable. I don’t opt for the channel that is going to spend all of its energy telling me things that I don’t want to know in ways that make me feel like I’m invading someone else’s privacy. By this point, you may be asking yourself what it is exactly that I do watch. That’s fair. As I mentioned, I watch sports. I watch a lot of sports. I watch cooking shows and genuinely funny shows. Or, and here’s the crazy part, I read a book. Or go to the gym. All I’m saying is don’t ask my opinion on something and then get mad when I don’t have one. I didn’t ask your opinion, did I?

Dennis Phillippi, we suspect you are a walking reality show, so that is the real reason you haven’t the time to watch them. You’re just secretly waiting to release your recorded shenanigans as a documentary—a more respected visual art form.

RSVP Magazine Introduces


Now accepting wedding submissions for the February 2012 issue of RSVP. Please visit for complete details. *Deadline for submissions is November 30, 2011. No exceptions. Weddings must have taken place between December 1, 2010 and deadline.


Birthday Boy

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1 95 6




his photo was taken at the former Memphis Union Station on Elvis’ birthday, prior to him leaving for Hollywood to make his movie debut in Love Me Tender. Elvis took time before the trip to join Lester Gingold, chairman of the March of Dimes, to show his support for the nonprofit’s efforts. Standing from left to right in the front are Gingold, Mac Adams (the managing editor of The Commercial Appeal at the time), Adams’ daughter (the young girl), Elvis and Joyce Gingold. In the back are the two teenage co-chairmen for the March of Dimes. PHOTO COURTESY OF LESTER GINGOLD If you have a past photo you would like to share with RSVP readers, please contact Leah Fitzpatrick at 276-7787 ext. 105 or e-mail the photo and caption to All photos will be returned promptly.

SINCE 1995

Advertising in RSVP Magazine places your message before an active, affluent market of Mid-Southerners who desire the best in quality and service.

More Than 120,000 Readers Average Household Income. . . . . . . . . . . .$147,000 per year. 88.6% . . . . . . . . .Purchased a Product or Visited a Store due 58.16% have HH incomes greater than . . . $75,000 per year. to Advertising in RSVP. Female Readers . . . 59.2% Male Readers . . .40.8% 42.6% . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Traveled Abroad during the past year. Marital Status . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .62.2% married 52.% . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Eat out at least 3 times per week. Home Owners . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .81.3% 3 0 , 0 0 0 c o p i e s d e l i v e r e d m o n t h l y t h r o u gh o u t Education: Attended/Graduated College plus . . . . . . .83.0% the Aff luent Shopping Areas of Greater Memphis Have Post graduate degree . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .21.6% From Harbor Town to Collierville.

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RSVP Magazine August 2011  

RSVP magazine is like no other publication in the city of Memphis. What began as simply “The Society Pages” more than a decade ago has evolv...

RSVP Magazine August 2011  

RSVP magazine is like no other publication in the city of Memphis. What began as simply “The Society Pages” more than a decade ago has evolv...