Under Chandeliers Hung from Towering Oaks, Menil Hosts Al Fresco 'Party in the Park'

Cullen and Robert Muse

THE MENIL COLLECTION took advantage of milder weather to welcome some 300 yopro-type guests to its second annual al fresco fundraising dinner — Party in the Park.


The uniquely beautiful event — think crystal chandeliers and strands of twinkle light strung in the old, towering oaks in the park space adjacent to the famous museum — fittingly raises money “to ensure the museum’s green spaces, art buildings, and programs remain free and open to all,” says a rep for the event’s organizers. Django Foxtrot offered a lively, bluegrass-tinged playlist as a soundtrack.

Delicious nibbles by City Kitchen were both passed as hors d’oeuvres and dished out buffet-style at dinner stations. Highlights from the menu included miniature BLT sandwiches, cucumber cups with spicy pineapple salsa, braised beef short ribs served over jalapeño cheese grits pecan-crusted chicken, baby spinach salad and paella with saffron rice, shrimp and mussels. Mini pecan tarts, lemon bars, and Brandy Alexander cocktails turned up for dessert.

Co-chairs for the event, which boasted a till of $250,000, were Kiki and Taylor Landry, Laura and Keefer Lehner, Katy and Sandy Shurin, and Jennifer and David Strauss.

Sol and Jonathan Edwards

L.A. Martz and Om Pandya

Keefer and Laura Lehner and Kiki and Taylor Landry

Raquel Segal, Stephanie Cockrell and Amy Murchison

Katie McNearney, Victoria Salem and Orel Shoham

Django Foxtrot performs

Illa Gaunt and Capera Norinsky

James and Kimberly Bell and Kelly and Nick Silvers

The Scene outside the Menil

Chandler Moody, Jackson Smith, Stephanie Wong and Nick Stinson

James Hardy and Lauren Walstad Hardy

Joseph Doyle, Josephine Hill, Sara Cain and Michael McGinnis

David and Jen Strauss

Katy and Sandy Shurin

Lisa Helfman, Alexandra Butt and Morgan Garvey

Mike and Christina Van Booven

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