When Stage West launched its takeoff on television’s Dancing With the Stars series five years ago, the response to a local competition show featuring actors rather than dancers was a big success. Now one of Fort Worth’s favorite charity parties, Acting With the Stars’ fifth edition on Feb. 11 will again pair six local celebrities with professional actors to provide an evening of unique entertainment.
The fun evening — a perfect date for couples celebrating Valentine’s Day — will feature cocktails, a three-course dinner in the swank Horizon Room at the Fort Worth Club, the inimitable stage show competition, song and dance numbers by local pros, and live and silent auctions. Wendy Davis is the honorary chair, and event chairs are Therese and Tom Moncrief.
“We’ve selected some of the most unique and entertaining scenes yet for this year’s event,” said Dana Schultes, who was just named executive producer of Stage West after 15 years of serving in various leadership capacities along with an impressive lineup of stage credits.
“This year’s teams are perhaps our most competitive ever. We have an excellent variety of scenes, and the audience is going to have a great time,” Schultes said.
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Local celebrities ready to earn their acting chops are Stephanie Allmon Merry (the Star-Telegram’s own lifestyle and Indulge magazine editor), Chuck LaMendola (TCU professor and play-by-play voice for TCU baseball), Stacie McDavid (CEO, McDavid Companies), Pam Minick cowgirl and former marketing executive for Billy Bob’s Texas), Paul Paine (president, Fort Worth South) and Bob Tallman (cowboy and rodeo announcer).
In tune with Valentine’s Day, the scenes re-created from popular stage plays will revolve around romantic relationships and the complexities of love. Stage decor and costumes will be under the watchful and talented eye of Aaron Patrick DeClerk, an award-winning costume designer known locally for his work with the Trinity Shakespeare Festival.
“Guests will vote for their favorites based on ability to be in-the-moment, speak with stage clarity and diction, and to tell the story of their scene with their acting partner,” Schultes said. The Acting With the Stars trophy goes to the pair garnering the most votes.
The night opens with complimentary wine and beer while guests mingle, pose for souvenir photos and peruse a silent auction. Later after dinner and the show and while the votes are tallied, a speedy live auction will offer bidders weekend getaways, a week’s stay at a Honolulu condo, jewelry, art and other prizes.
In an unexpected announcement, Schultes reports that there will be just one more regular season next year to select the sixth winner of the annual competition. “Then in 2018, we will present the final Acting With the Stars: the Championship Edition,” she said.
Tickets for the Feb. 11 event are $150 per person and include a hosted drink hour, dinner, chocolates, roses, a vote for your favorite scene and a souvenir photograph. Additional votes are $5 each. Purchase tickets at the Stage West box office (call 817-784-9378) or buy them online at www.stagewest.org.
Ambassadors of Fort Worth present 2015 debutantes
Congratulations to the young women presented at last month’s 64th annual Debutante Ball hosted by the Ambassadors Club of Fort Worth.
In a ceremony in the Hilton Hotel’s Crystal Ballroom, this year’s debutantes were Sheree Kiana Coulter, Mariah Lynn Mathews, Destinee Danielle Robinson and Jillian Hope Taylor.
The president of the Ambassadors Club is Johnny J. Bennett, and Blake W. Moorman chaired the debutante committee. The club was formed in 1947 to give support to the Fort Worth Assembly and to honor the Fort Worth Assembly debutantes. Visit www.afwi.org to learn more about the organization.
Consumer-savvy Girl Scouts offer digital sales and gluten-free cookies
It’s hard to resist those yummy cookies and even harder to say no to a heartfelt pitch by an eager Girl Scout during the annual cookie-selling season that kicked off Jan. 15 and will run through Feb. 28.
“The Girl Scout cookie program is about more than just cookies,” said local Girl Scout executive Becky Burton. “The program teaches girls business skills and instills a lifelong sense of civic responsibility that creates leaders.”
Girls decide how to spend their troop cookie money and reinvest it in their communities through service projects and learning experiences, Burton explained.
“This year, my troop is planning on finishing our school’s butterfly garden with our cookie funds,” Milena Gandara of Troop 2410 said in a news release. “In the past, our troop has used cookie funds to purchase our Girl Scouting books and badges.”
Remaining in the product lineup are the Lemonades with their lemony frosting on a shortbread cookie. And back again are the gluten-free Trios.
Expanding the distribution channels that have earned the Scouts their sweet success meant adding the opportunity to purchase cookies online along with the door-to-door, booth, and friends and family sales.
You only have a scant few weeks to answer that knock on the door or respond to the sweet Girl Scout at a public location in order to stock up on the tasty treats. Visit www.girlscoutcookies.org and enter your ZIP code to find a booth near you.
Events at a glance
▪ Polar Plunge benefiting Special Olympics is Jan. 30 at 10 a.m. at NRH2O water park in North Richland Hills. Individuals and teams will be “Freezin’ for a Reason.” Those who raise more money than the minimum registration fee will receive a long-sleeve T-shirt, six-pack cooler, blanket and a duffel bag for each donation level they meet. Awards go to top money-raisers and to the individual with the best costume, so come dressed to impress. Sign up at www.sotx.org/news-events/polar-plunge/a11.
▪ Torch Awards Gala is Feb. 20 at the Fort Worth Zoo Wild Arts Gallery. Hosted by the Better Business Bureau of Fort Worth and Tarrant County, the event recognizes companies and charities that excel at ethical business practices, giving back to the community and customer service. Tickets are $75 each. and reservations are due Feb. 10. Sign up at www.fwbbbab.org, or call Lindsey Haase at 817-509-9729.
▪ Chamber Music Society of Fort Worth concert is Jan. 30 at 2 p.m. at the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth. “A Study in Contrasts” features soloists and chamber musicians, Jon Kimura Parker, Martin Beaver and Clive Greensmith as they form a new piano trio, the Montrose Trio. To purchase tickets, call 817-877-3003 or go to www.chambermusicfw.org.
▪ Run with Heart is Jan. 30 at Methodist Mansfield Medical Center. Choose from half-marathon, 5K and 1-mile distances. Proceeds benefit the Amon G. Carter Foundation Heart and Vascular Center. Starting lineup is at 2700 Broad St. in Mansfield. Register at www.MansfieldRunWithHeart.org.
▪ Awards Gala hosted by Northeast Tarrant Chamber is Jan. 28 at the NRH Centre. The event honors contributions of special individuals and organizations within Northeast Tarrant County. Dinner and live entertainment by Michael Hix will round out the evening. Call the chamber at 817-281-9376 to make reservations.