Social Eyes by Faye Reeder

Empowered Woman luncheon to fund STEM scholarship

Twiggy will thrill the crowds with shows at 3, 5, 7 and 9 p.m. July 4 at Bedford Boys Ranch Lake near the pavilion.
Twiggy will thrill the crowds with shows at 3, 5, 7 and 9 p.m. July 4 at Bedford Boys Ranch Lake near the pavilion. Courtesy photo

Back for the eighth year, the Empowered Women event is set for 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. July 14 at Colleyville’s Piazza in the Village. Presented by the Colleyville Chamber of Commerce, the event promises to deliver another powerhouse midsummer experience for local women in business.

“The Colleyville Chamber Empowered Woman luncheon is the real deal,” says chamber President Connie Hanner said. “Being an empowered woman means taking full responsibility for successes and failures that make us who we are and push us to become better role models for our children, community and workplaces.”

Guests will enjoy a sumptuous lunch after networking time while sipping refreshing mimosas and nonalcoholic Menchie’s mosas.

Hanner announced that funds raised at the event will establish an endowed STEM scholarship for women who focus on STEM-oriented careers. And to expand the reach of the event while giving sponsors additional opportunities, the chamber is asking sponsors to consider providing tickets for women from marginalized populations who otherwise could not afford a $60 lunch ticket.

“We are the first chamber in the area to offer this type of scholarship and sponsorship because we believe the message of hope that the Empowered Luncheon provides to women can provide the inspiration to turn surviving into thriving,” Hanner said.

Lauren Przybl of the Fox 4 news team will keep things running smoothly as master of ceremonies. The keynote speaker is Debbie Scanlon, a partner in the accounting and consulting firm BKD. Scanlon’s impressive bio includes many years of providing audit and consulting services to big corporations, including educating boards and audit committees about fiduciary responsibilities.

Scanlon will talk about the fear many professional women face as they advance in their careers and how to recognize and deal with them head-on.

Be prepared for a difficult decision choosing which of eight raffle packages will get your ticket. A wine-tasting party, $300 Visa card, designer purses, a handsome oak chair with the state seal on the upholstery, a spa day, restaurant outing, a staycation package and diamond jewelry will go home with the lucky women whose tickets are drawn. Raffle tickets are $10 each or three for $25.

According to Hanner, the increasingly popular event will move to a new venue next year and expand the morning by including educational sessions and information booths. “Looking ahead to 2020, the Colleyville Chamber Empowered Woman event will take center stage as it celebrates the 100th anniversary of women’s suffrage,” she added.

Tickets are $60 each. Register online at or contact Erin Pedersen at 817-488-7148 or to learn about sponsorship opportunities.

1949 Girl Scout Troop 11 recognized at centennial event

It was all smiles for 16 members of Girl Scout Troop 11 last month at the Gold Award Centennial Celebration. The troop, recipient of the Curved Bar award, which was the highest honor the scouts handed out between 1940 and 1963, was recognized at a luncheon at Cacharel Ballroom in Arlington.

According to Carole Steadham of Keller, Troop 11 was active from 1949 to 1961, the year its members graduated from Carter-Riverside High School in Fort Worth.

“Many of us [from Troop 11] are professionals — ministers, nurses, teachers, CPAs, business owners — in Fort Worth,” Steadham said. “I currently have my own troop in Keller. We have 16 Scouts remaining together in 2016, and we are 73 years of age and are celebrating our 55th high school reunion together.”

At the May event, the Girl Scouts of Texas Oklahoma Plains celebrated girls who earned the current highest award in Girl Scouting, the Gold Award, for their hard work, dedication and leadership. This year marks 100 years of the Gold Award, and the celebration also honored all who earned the Gold Award and its previous iterations.

Bedford 4thFest has music, fireworks and a water-skiing squirrel

Bedford will celebrate both Independence Day and the completion of the first round of improvements at the Boys Ranch Park on July 4 with a music and art festival capped off by a spectacular fireworks extravaganza.

“We are very excited to have the 4thFest event back at the new and improved Boys Ranch Park this year,” spokeswoman Natalie Foster said. “Along with the live music, food and art vendors and the classic car show, we have added a grand-opening ribbon-cutting to celebrate the completion of phase 1 park improvements. The event is sure to impress.”

Despite a stellar lineup of activities, vendors and music, everything may be upstaged by the inaugural performance by Twiggy the water-skiing squirrel.

Twiggy will thrill the crowds with shows at 3, 5, 7 and 9 p.m. at the Boys Ranch Lake near the pavilion. This is definitely a first, and I suspect people will come from near and far to see the world-famous squirrel spectacle.

The InflataFun area will have the latest inflatable attractions for fun lovers to bounce to their heart’s content ($15 for all day or pay per activity), and families will enjoy the kids’ activity area, where games, crafts and free comedy shows will be performed each hour from 4:30 to 8:30 p.m. For classic car lovers, the amazing rides that the D&D Rockin’ Rods club will have on display will dazzle. Check out the cars and visit with their owners for the back story from 6 to 8 p.m.

What’s a July Fourth festival without live music? No problem: Two great performers will entertain the crowd all evening. Rodney Bowens will take the stage at 5 p.m. performing his genre-busting brand of blues, rock and country. A moving patriotic salute to veterans at 6:30 p.m. will precede the headliner band, Live 80, at 7 p.m. performing your favorite hits from the ’80s.

Admission to the festival is free, and lawn chairs, coolers and nonalcoholic beverages are permitted. A food court will be open from 4 to 10 p.m. Limited parking on site will be $20, and parking at the Bedford library will be $15. No shuttle buses will be provided.

Details at, or call the Boys Ranch Activity Center at 817-952-2323 to make inquiries.

Happy trails

The Tarrant Area Food Bank will say goodbye to longtime Communications Director Andrea Helms this week at a festive retirement party.

Helms is heading off to a new chapter of life called retirement where deadlines and pressing media issues are not the order of the day.

“Eighteen years at Tarrant Area Food Bank were a very gratifying way to cap off my career in communications,” Helms said. “My colleagues and I were passionate about feeding community members struggling to put food on their tables, and generous donors, volunteers and media outlets made work a pleasure.”

Helms’ successor will be Stephen Russell, who will fill the role of director of marketing and communications.

Events at a glance

  • Mimir Chamber Music Festival is Monday-July 8 in the PepsiCo Recital Hall at TCU. The festival features an outstanding collection of performing artists from the world’s leading orchestras, music schools and concert halls, including a Grammy-nominated pianist, John Novacek, and an Avery Fisher Grant winner, pianist Alessio Bax. Concerts are at 7:30 p.m. Thursday, Friday and July 5 and 8. A July 3 concert at 2 p.m. is at the Kimbell Art Museum’s Renzo Piano Pavilion. Tickets are $10-$120. For more information,
  • Chancel choir of Arlington Heights United Methodist will present a “Tribute to God and Country” program at 10:50 a.m. July 3 in the sanctuary at 4200 Camp Bowie Blvd., Fort Worth. Admission is free.
  • “Beginning Your Native American Genealogical Search” program is at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday in the Tandy Auditorium of the Fort Worth Library, 500 W. Third St. Hosted by the library and the Fort Worth Genealogical Society, the speaker is Aaron Holt from the National Archives. Contact Judy Ramos at to learn more.

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