Social Eyes by Faye Reeder

Stage West to pick Acting With the Stars champ at Valentine’s Day event

The 2017 Acting With the Stars participants. This year’s event is again on Valentine’s Day.
The 2017 Acting With the Stars participants. This year’s event is again on Valentine’s Day. Courtesy

How to make your sweethearts feel special on Valentine’s Day is easily handled by getting tickets for the Stage West annual Feb. 14 soiree, Acting With the Stars. The glam-filled evening will go down in the memory bank as a unique experience to remember always.

The opening act is a hosted wine hour when guests can chat between turns at the silent auction display and posing for souvenir photos printed on the spot. Then there’s the delightful entertainment by the Stage West artists while enjoying an outstanding three-course meal.

The main event has always been local celebrities paired with professional actors doing scenes from live theater shows in a contest to see which local celeb is chosen as the winner.

“This final year is the championship season and we are bringing back five former winners and one wild-card contestant. It’s basically an All-Stars version,” said Dana Schultes, Stage West managing director. “It’s been an exhilarating run and we’ve met the most amazing people — both stars and attendees.

Returning champs are former Fort Worth police chief Jeff Halstead, Bo Soderbergh from the food bank and physician Janice Knebl. TCU professor Don Mills and Eva Bonilla from Vamos DFW Tours will round out returning winners, and philanthropist Therese Moncrief, first runner-up from an earlier season, will take the wild-card spot.

The event has scored around $300,000 since 2012 to fund the Stage West educational programming and several special projects. Hopes are to push the grand total to $350,000 with this final year.

“We will continue the tradition of giving attendees a flower and some gourmet chocolates as well as access to the ever-popular photo booth for capturing silliness or even a bit of canoodling for the camera,” said Schultes. “This will still be one of the most unique Valentine’s Day outings — there is nothing else quite like it anywhere and people always have the best time.”

“Our silent auction is going mobile, giving guests the edge on winning their favorite items right to the last second without having to leave their seats,” Schultes reports.

“We also have master guitarist Chris Dunklin playing an array of styles from classical to Latin to contemporary. Our lightning speed live auction will even include a private party concert by Dunklin. Other items include an exclusive private dinner prepared by the chef at Piola, a weeklong stay in Dillon, Colorado, and tickets to see Blake Shelton at the AA Center in Dallas, among other wonderful items.”

Schultes is back on stage for an encore from 2012 with Halstead. “He is the bee’s knees and I can’t wait to work with him again. And in addition to the stars who are vying for the championship trophy, we have many more stars returning to be part of the show, sort of like Academy Award presenters. Brad Sham, J.R. Labbe, Paul and Harriet Harrell and Cindy Holt, to name a few, will be guest stars featured throughout the evening.”

Tickets are $150 each and can be ordered at or by calling 817-784-9378.

Bart Crow Band headlines Boots & Bling Hope Dinner to support school children

Country troubadour Bart Crow and his band will perform a private concert at the upcoming Hope Dinner hosted by Community Storehouse on Feb. 24. This fashionable boots and bling event, now in its 16th year, will be a festive evening of special music, cocktails, dinner, auctions and dancing.

The money raised will benefit children in the Keller, Northwest and Carroll school districts living at or below the poverty line. The services provided by Community Storehouse include educational enrichment, tutoring, a food pantry and clothing assistance, as well as youth leadership and college awareness programs. Executive Director Barbara Board is well respected in the community as a visionary leader committed to serving low-income families.

Friends and supporters of the organization will saddle up and scoot their boots into the Omni Fort Worth Hotel to enjoy complimentary cocktails at an opening reception before an elegant three-course seated dinner is served. Westlake Mayor Laura Wheat will emcee the party, and guests will bid enthusiastically on such auction swag as a vacation beach house in Gulf Shores, Alabama, or a jersey autographed by Dak Prescott.

A raffle winner will ride out in a brand new 2018 Harley-Davidson. Only 250 tickets will be sold for $100 each, so the odds of winning are good. The winner does not have to be present to win.

According to agency statistics, there was significant growth in the demand for services last year. “As the only children’s charity in Northeast Tarrant County whose focus is keeping children in the classroom, we invite you to join us for a Night of Hope to help change the future of over 4,600 local children,” writes a spokesman for the charity.

Megan Stiller, development director, says more than 500 people are expected to attend the event. “It’s so great to see people come together to support the children in our community. We hope everyone will come out and enjoy an evening of giving.”

Tickets are $150 each or a Night Out package for two is $275. Purchase online at or call Stiller at 817-431-3340.

Meet the Champs event aims to punch out Parkinson’s disease

Raising money to help deliver a knockout punch to the cruelly debilitating Parkinson’s disease, guests will converge on at the Fort Worth Club on Feb. 10 for the sixth edition of the Meet the Champs party. Monies raised will benefit Paulie Ayala’s remarkable program for non-contact workouts for Parkinson’s patients.

Guests will socialize and sip cocktails as they nosh on hors d’oeuvres in the midst of perusing a silent auction and reaching into a jewelry grab bag before sitting down to a superb dinner. The audience is in for a real treat with special guest speaker Brian Grant. The former NBA standout will share stories about his struggle with the disease.

“This is a very important evening that will help in our constant battle with Parkinson’s,” said Jan Curry from the event committee. “It is educational, entertaining, and a rewarding evening of giving. It is our way of informing the audience and inspiring them to help in our fight. It is also a time to recognize Paulie and Leti Ayala for their contributions in helping so many Parkinson’s patients in their fight for life.”

Capably handling emcee duties will be Fort Worth’s own Pam Minick and sports talk show host Mark Elfenbein. Others who helped get the event ready for prime time are Murray Zoota, Dan Novak and Donald Wells.

Tickets are $100 each. Learn more at Reservations are due by Feb. 5 and arrangements are made by calling Jan Simus Events at 817-763-5087.

Events at a glance

H-E-B Chamber Awards Luncheon is Feb. 9 at Hurst Conference Center. From among 35 business nominees and over 50 individual nominees, a dozen awards to recognize the accomplishments of outstanding businesses, organizations and individuals will be presented. Robert Earley, President and CEO of JPS Health Network, will emcee. Tickets are $30 each. Purchase at or call 817-283-1521.

The Salvation Army Women’s Service League of Hood County fundraiser, Charities on the Runway Style Show, is Feb. 13 at 10:30 a.m. at the DeCordova Bend Estates Country Club in Granbury. The style show will feature models from local charities competing for cash prizes for their charities. Tickets are $40 each. Contact Joyce Brock at 817-279-0855.

Twitter: @FayeReeder