Tuesday, September 18, 2018
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20180308 Red Hats Ladies Luncheon KODSC 0082Hat Lady
Shirley Hawkins of the Dazzling Dolphins, who is known among the Red Hat Ladies for her gorgeous hats, models one of her Kentucky Derby hats.

Black and White was the theme of this year’s Red Hat Style Show, held annually at the Schlitterbahn Resort the last Tuesday in February. Sponsored by the Dazzling Dolphin Red Hat Group from South Padre Island, it is an event open to all Red Hat ladies across the Rio Grande Valley. This year’s event attracted 85 ladies from different Red Hat groups spread from Mission to South Padre Island and Brownsville.

Everyone wore black and white clothing. Styles ranged from elegant dress to casual wear. Some ladies also selected black and white hats, while others chose to wear the traditional red hat.

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Dazzling Dolphins
Each year the Dazzling Dolphins of South Padre Island sponsor a fashion show with a different theme at the Schlitterbahn on South Padre Island.

Dazzling Dolphin Shirley Hawkins, known as the hat lady because of her glamour hats, acted as emcee of the event. She introduced musicians, led the raffles of the two quilts, led the discussion to find the oldest Red Hat Lady there, and introduced each group in the parade.

Ladies ranged in age from their 50s to 93-year-old Betty Hardin who resides in Palm to Pine in Weslaco during the winter and Nebraska during the summer. She had two other close competitors, both in their 90s.

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Oldest Lady Present
Looking far younger than her 93 years, Betty Hawkins, of Pine to Palm in Weslaco and Nebraska, wore a black and white fringed dress.

Two quilts were raffled as part of the fun. One was a blue print with a matching pillow while the other had a Red Hat theme. Helen Bailey won the Red Hat quilt, while Judy Jansen, of Wisconsin, won the blue quilt. Both ladies are members of the Brownsville Automakers.

The ladies enjoyed a Mexican buffet dinner while David Sellers, husband of one of the ladies, sang and played harmonica. His friend, Doyle Heim, accompanied him on accordion. They provided gentle background music such as “Georgia” and “Singing in the Rain” during the luncheon and style show.

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Won quilt raffle
Helen Bailey, from the Red-Hot Tamales in Brownsville, won the blue quilt that was raffled.

During the meal, the ladies visited with other groups and found out some of the activities they were doing both in the local Red Hat Chapters and their groups back home where they live in the summer. Some groups simply enjoy going out to lunch while other groups enjoy special activities such as pajama parties, new red hat making contests, formal teas or dinners, and shopping trips.

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San Benito Red Hat Dollys

Many of the winter groups in the Rio Grande Valley enjoy visiting local favorite spots like Turtle Rehab, Inc. or the dolphin tours on South Padre Island. Local nature sights and the sunset cruises on the island are also very popular with the ladies.

Other groups choose to have lunch at a nice restaurant and then a movie. Or they opt for museums, nature centers and special tours available in their areas.

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Weslaco Red Hat Ladies

After the meal, the name of each group represented was called and the ladies paraded around the room showing off their finery.

Door prizes were distributed after the style show.

At the end of the event, the ladies were told the theme for next year’s Red Hat Style Show is going to be “Lace and Roses.” Hawkins told the ladies they have a full year to come up with a costume with that theme. The event is planned for February 26, 2019, once again at Schlitterbahn at SPI.

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Mission’s Rio Valley Fillies

See you there next year!


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