By Lori Lemon-Geshay
On Saturday, May 5th, 2012 restaurant owner, Johnny Vasallo, owner of Mo’s …A Place for Steaks and Momentum Volvo hosted the 5th Annual “Run for The Roses” Kentucky Derby Party charity fundraising event honoring Holly Harwood Skolkin and benefitting the Holly Rose Ribbon Foundation.
Hats off to Derby time! Houston’s 5th annual “Run for the Roses” Kentucky Derby Party as featured on KHOU’s Great Day Houston with Debra Duncan.
The Kentucky Derby themed event, chaired by Chyra Blackaller and Lori Lemon-Geshay was the most well-attended event to date for Mo’s, with such noteworthy sponsors as Momentum Volvo, Lexis Florist and Festari for Men. A wonderful success, the fundraiser raised nearly $30,000 gross profits with less than 10% going towards operating expenses, the silent auction alone raised $8,200, and betting on the races raised $3,000 for the Holly Rose Ribbon Foundation for cancer survivors.
Mint julep’s, derby-tini’s (pink martinis), Mo’s quesidillas, Carolyn Farb guacamole with wonton chips, and assorted sushi was enjoyed by the crowd of over 350 guests. Gentlemen dressed up in their seersucker & linen while Ladies expressed their inner Southern Belle and wore the grandest chic “Run for the Roses” Kentucky Derby hats to compete in the highly anticipated hat contest. Hats were also offered for sale by Nyanza Moore Custom Chapeaus at the event, with 45% of her sales being donated to the Holly Rose Ribbon Foundation.
The afternoon event was destined to be the most fashionable, for both men and women. The “Greatest 2 Minutes in Sports” event also featured betting, a hat contest, and a silent auction of items ranging from diamond rings, sports memorabilia, clothing, spa services, weekend getaways and so much more! -HTexas Magazine
Via CultureMap: Wining best hat designs were artist Azar Taleghany and Heather Hunt. Taking honors as “cutest couple” were Channel 2 KPRC’s Courtney Zavala and husband Orlando. Representing Channel 11 KHOU was reporter Courtney Zubowski who along with producer Amy Ditta were finalists in the best hat competition. There were even prizes for best dressed gents — those honors went to Jeff Ball and Houston Attorney Ben Harwood Rose, who happened to be head-to-toe in Festari For Men.
Making the party happen — underwriter Momentum Volvo represented by Diane Caplan, who filled the parking with hot cars; Miriam Habib of Lexis Florist, who provided oodles of red roses; and Mo’s host Johnny Vassallo.
Making the scene were Dr. Mark Skolkin, Reality TV Star Erica Rose (of the Bachelor & Bachelor Pad), Carolyn Farb, Charles Ward, Julie Beeson, Michael Caplan, Debbie and Rudy Festari, Cynthia Sinatra, Courtney Zavala, Sharon Brier, Carra Fleming, Becky Allen, Nancy Marcus Golden, Beth Muecke, Sharon Albert Brier, Wendee Hoffman, Amber Akers, Lane and Joseph Mustachia, Renee Dillenseger, Nadia Lauterbach, Angelica and Edward Chapman and Kristine Garbo.
Since its inception in Houston, Texas, in 2005, the Holly Rose Ribbon Foundation, in collaboration with Silhouette Artist Cindi Rose, Celebrity Plastic Surgeon Dr. Franklin Rose and Tony Rotondo, CEO of the First Street Surgical Center, has helped breast cancer survivors, including women, men and children receive free reconstructive surgery. Its mission is to improve the emotional health of those with critical illness by providing free reconstruction, to both uninsured and under-insured individuals, of all ages and both sexes. Yearly, twelve to fifteen people receive free breast reconstruction from the Holly Rose Ribbon Foundation. All the money donated goes directly to the patients, including their total hospital cost, all nurses, medicines and other doctors. Recently, the foundation has included non- human hair wigs, comfortable robes, pillows, permanent eyebrows and psychological support to those with critical sickness.
In March of 2012, the Rose Ribbon Foundation changed its name to the Holly Rose Ribbon Foundation in honor of Cindi Rose‘s sister, Holly Harwood Skolkin, who had stage 4 cancer. Holly left this world, peacefully and with courage in February of this year.
2012 “Run for the Roses” Committee
Event Chairs: Chyra Blackaller & Lori Lemon-Geshay
Silent Auction Chair: Sarah Lampe
Ticket Sales Chair: Carra Fleming
Betting Chair: Chris Reichard
Announcer: Nicole Brende
Hat Contest Chair: Hannah Thibodeaux
Photo | Video Chair: Mark Levin
Heather Baker & David Montgomery
Nancy & Richard Golden
Ronna Lynn & Mike Farrell
Jillian Rotter & Andrew Seerdeen
Cindi & Franklin Rose
April & Tony Zubizarreta
Debbie & Rudy Festari
Special Thanks to Our Underwriter: Mo’s…A Place for Steaks
Special Thanks to Our Trophy Sponsor: Momentum Volvo
Special Thanks to Our Floral Sponsor: Lexis Florist
Special Thanks to Our Printing Sponsor: 2daypostcards.com
Special Thanks to Our Silent Auction Donors:
2 Day Postcards
713 – Tickets
Al Torres Photography
Cathleen Cade Designs
Eclipse Sunnless Tanning
Edward Sanchez Cosmetics
Festari for Men
Gems by Chao
Guri do Sul Brazilian Steakhouse
Houston Museum of Natural Science
J Hilburn Clothier by Ronna Lynn & Mike Farrell
Kenneth Williams Fitness
La Mode Lingerie & Swimwear
Latin Bites Cafe
Life + Dog Magazine
Monitrice Moni’ Malone
Nyanza Moore Custom Chapeaus
Oh My Dog!
One Salon – Michael Soliz
Plus One Pet Precious Moments Video Production
Scentuary Therapeutic Massage and Bodyworks
Sculpt – Pilates Studio
Sofia van der Dys
Stella & Dot Jewelery
Strip House – Houston
Susies’s Cakes & Confections
Tiffany Torregrossa Designs
Today’s Gourmet of Houston
Top Drawer Lingerie
Utopia Med Spa
West Ave – Gables
Wildcat Golf Course
and many more…
For more information, please visit www.hollyroseribbon.org.