Honoring Texas History, Heritage Society Lunch Was a 'Big, Wonderful Thing'

Priscilla Dickson
Honoring Texas History, Heritage Society Lunch Was a 'Big, Wonderful Thing'

Phoebe Tudor, Mark Sullivan and Minnette Boesel

HOUSTONIANS WERE CAPTIVATED by beloved Frank Billingsley's recounting of his family history at the Heritage Society's annual luncheon, where Billingsley was the event emcee.

He told the tale of how his 11-generations-great grandfather Captain Jesse Billingsley led his men into the Battle of San Jacinto and originated the battle cry "Remember the Alamo." And this story was followed up by author Stephen Harrigan's onstage appearance, giving an insight into the pages of Big Wonderful Thing, Harrigan's latest book about Texas' struggle and triumph in a land of extremes. In conversation with podcaster Ken Wise, Harrigan discussed the Spanish explorers, Comanche warriors, Tejano activists and Texas wildcatters who have made our state so great.

Chaired by Gwen and Ed Emmett and Angela and Will Cannady, the event also honored Gary White, who is retiring from the Heritage Society after 30 years.

Jo Furr and Harriet Latimer

Donna Vallone and Kristina Somerville

Carleta Sandeen and Fran Callahan

Carol Brooks and Steve Lucchesi

Alison Bell, Gary White and Carolyn Johnson

Jean Wilson, Tim Richey and Carla Bisong

Barry Mandel and Frank Billingsley

Nancy Willerson, Jane Wise and Caroline Hassell

Will and Angela Cannady and Gwen and Ed Emmett

Mary Maxey, Nancy Willerson and Ginger Blanton

Stephen Harrigan and Ken Wise

C. C. and Duke Ensell

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Serial entrepreneur and spa visionary LeBrina Jackson

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AN INTIMATE GATHERING of around 125 guests toasted the 25th anniversary of Rienzi, the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston's house of European decorative arts. Beautiful blooms in shades of pink, white and blue, complemented by blue-toile linens, were found all around the verdant grounds, illuminated by simply chic string lights hanging from above.

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