Margarita Ball will collect toys for needy kids

Posted Tuesday, Nov. 12, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

Have more to add? News tip? Tell us

It’s that time of year when concerns grow over children in need who might not be blessed with a wonderful toy at Christmas.

But take heart, because the The Margarita Society of Arlington will once again come to the rescue by collecting toys at the annual Margarita Gala and Charity Ball set for Nov. 23 at the Arlington Convention Center.

The protocol for the ball is simple: the directors of the society do all the work of organizing the party and the admission cost for each guest to attend is at least one new, unwrapped toy valued at $30 or more. After the ball, the toys go to children carefully chosen by the participating schools in Arlington and are distributed by Arlington Santa Cops during a festive Christmas party in December.

Margarita Society Director and Arlington City Councilman Robert Rivera said, “This is Arlington’s biggest social gathering of the year, and we want it as community friendly and as inclusive as possible. We want to have a big number of Arlington folks there.

Although the event is strictly invitational, Rivera is asking people from the community who did not receive an invitation to contact him at or to message him on Facebook. He also suggested that those wanting to attend visit the website to contact someone they know to request an invitation.

Event chairman Marc Prda and an energetic bunch of Margarita Society colleagues have again planned an evening that includes the signature margaritas and a cash bar for other beverages to be served with a hearty hors d-oeuvres buffet.

“For thirty years our guests have arrived at our party dressed to the nines with fabulous toys in tow ready to mingle, enjoy great margaritas, gamble, and dance the night away,” writes Prda in the newsletter. “What better way to start off the Holiday Season than to make a difference in a child’s life during Christmas time?”

Guests at the party will enjoy a casino and silent auction. Rumor has it that casino prizes include Southwest Airlines Buddy Passes from Vegas Concepts, flooring from Ged’s Floor Store, Lucchese boots from The Man’s Shop in Arlington and more. A raffle will offer a chance to win a trip to Eldorado Casino and Resort. Don’t worry about missing game action because two giant screen TVs will help you root your favorite team on.

Headline band is Professor D with fabulous backup band Johnny D and the Doo Wops playing great tune from many genres including rock, oldies and Top 40.

“It’s a great party with good networking opportunities. This is about community service and involvement, and I hope it’s a way to help people get plugged in so it will lead to more involvement,” said Rivera.

Most toys should be geared for kids age 5-13, but a few gifts for older teens such as digital or video recorders and cameras would be welcome. If you haven’t been, just seeing the massive tree-shaped structure fill up with toys is more than worth the effort to go. It’s a feel-good that will warm you all through the holidays.

Visit to see the directors and get details.

Mitch Wilson Memorial Festival of Trees

Have you seen the interesting questions on the Arlington Museum of Art website? Here’s a few:

Got extra Christmas tree decorations and no place to put them?

Parking in the driveway since your garage is full of holiday décor?

Do your out of town guests have to stay at a hotel because your spare room is full of boxes loaded with tree trimmings?

Their solution? Donate or loan your extra holiday tree decorations and trimmings to the Arlington Museum of Art for the Mitch Wilson Memorial Festival of Trees.

Ardent arts supporter and himself an artist and art teacher, Wilson passed earlier this year; and the festival is being held in his memory. A fitting tribute because he was so passionate about this event and worked feverishly to make it a success.

The organizers have already begun accepting trees and donations, and spokesperson Kathy Kline says people can still bring in trees and decorate them until Dec. 1.

It’s a great way to highlight your business or organization by putting a tree on display that tells the story of your company or charity. They are on view at the museum until Christmas and will be highlighted the evening of the Holiday Lights Parade on Dec. 7 at a reception after the parade featuring entertainment and refreshments.

The work of well-known artist with roots in Fort Worth and Arlington, Tom Newsom, will be on display at the museum during the festival. Newsom has illustrated dozens of books including “The Night Before Christmas” and “The Wizard of Oz.” His magazine credits include McCalls, Field & Stream, and National Geographic.

“Christmas themes have become a large portion of my commissions, often featuring Santa Claus. My images of St. Nick can be seen on puzzles, gift bags, textiles, food packaging, and Holiday tins,” wrote Newsom in a news release.

“The Christmas boutique will be open, and Tom Newsom will be here to sign any of his work. We have originals, prints, puzzles and Christmas cards for sale,” said Kline, adding, “We would like to have businesses, school groups, churches of all denominations to be represented in the exhibit…it will grow with time.”

To inquire about donating decorations or installing your tree, contact Kline at 817-275-4600.

Symphony Arlington Concert Thursday Invites Veterans

In observance of Veteran’s Day, Symphony Arlington is inviting veterans to attend the Thursday Concert at Arlington Music Hall and will admit all former and current military servicemen and women for only $10. Be sure to spread the word to any veterans you know and invite them to attend the show.

Steinway Artist Dr. Lei Weng will perform with the orchestra. Music by Beethoven – Leonora Overture No. 1; Brahms – Piano Concerto No. 1 in D Minor, Op. 15; and Kodály – Dances of Galanta will comprise the show.

Ticket prices range from $16.50 to $46.50. Purchase online at or at the door. To inquire, call the office at 817-385-0484. The historical and beautifully restored Music Hall is located at 224 N. Center St. in downtown Arlington.

Send your Eyes on Arlington news to Also, keep up with local events through our social media page. Please “like” us at Follow me on Twitter @FayeReeder

Looking for comments?

We welcome your comments on this story, but please be civil. Do not use profanity, hate speech, threats, personal abuse or any device to draw undue attention. Our policy requires those wishing to post here to use their real identity.

Our commenting policy | Facebook commenting FAQ | Why Facebook?

Click to vote for the Best of the Best in Arlington!