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20200304 red hattersBy Kathy Olivarez

The annual Festival of Tables held at Trophy Gardens in Alamo was a huge success as members of Red Hat Society groups from Winter Texan parks and local groups joined together to see the table décor and visit with old friends or meet new friends. This is the one event held annually that brings Red Hatters Valley-wide together.

Once the hostesses had decorated their tables, the rest of the ladies were allowed to make a line and move through the 30 different table settings on display. The tables had different themes and styles. The ladies expressed their excitement as they found settings that were particularly pleasing to them.


Holiday themes were important with Christmas being the most popular. Joanne Miller and Jo Anna Kurtenbach called their table “Christmas” while Jane Garza and Ethel Gonzalez presented “Christmas Elegance.” Also using “Christmas” as their theme were Mary Shafer and Diane Hardy. “Can’t Wait for Christmas” was created by Kathy Tonn Terriar and Sara Smith. Mary Virginia Gerlach presented “Winter Wonderland,” and Sharon Newcomer used “Angels,” both related to Christmas.

Easter was popular with “Easter” by Verle Johnson and Audrey Konold. A second Easter table was hosted by Barbara Gerlach. Halloween spiders covered a table by Pam Manley and Lucy Klaas. Thanksgiving was hosted by Exalted Queen Mother of the Rio Grande Valley Jan Bergman. Mardi Gras was the theme selected by Gladys Severson and Marianne Towns, who wore masks and Mardi Gras finery.20200304 red hatters 02

Red Hats are always a good choice. “Ladies in Red” was the theme selected by Maggie Loney and Carol Schilling who were decked out in red attire. “Red Hats” was also presented by Irene Bartz, Dorothy Moe and Alaine Kolib. Karen Beall and Judy Reynolds chose “Red Hat Dollies.”

Birds are an ever-popular theme with Carolyn Crist and Millie Wooton presenting “Hummingbirds.” Phyllis Connett and Norma Forest chose “Cardinals” as their theme. “Flamingo Foolery” was selected by Melinda Roiger and Sandra Funk because it is the theme of the International Red Hat Convention in Palm Springs later this year.

Where there are birds, there are usually bees. This year “Bumblebees” was presented by Jana Fleming and again by Karen Speer.

Where would the birds and bees be without flowers? Not to worry! “Texas Wildflowers” was presented by Pat Carey, Zita Short and Patty Cook. Sharon De Cock and Donna Colstrom brightened the day with “Kansas Sunflowers”

Not a year goes by without chocolate and Margie Pert’s “Death by Chocolate” lived up to its name with generous servings of chocolate. “Cupcakes” with Maureen Keppy and Denise Ziaga looked good enough to eat. And for those who like a little spice in their lives, “Hot Chili Peppers” added a Latin flair.

No show would be complete without a sports theme and this year it was “The Denver Broncos” hosted by Brenda Weytassek and Carole Langlois.

Other themes included “Royalty Table” by Maria Elena Davis and Mayra Cura. “Welcome Friends” was created by Kathi Hedberg. “Starving Artists” was hosted by Donna Hasor and Kate McGill. “Carol’s Creations” was brought by Camillia Hartmann and Carol Kremer.

A catered luncheon was served by Aaron Balli of Balli’s Catering in Mission.

After lunch, a comedy music show was presented by Mario Rosales who works in Vegas when not in the Rio Grande Valley. The music was partly country and partly from the Sinatra era.

Many thanks go to Jan Bergman, Exalted Queen of the Rio Grande Valley chapter. Bergman not only heads the Rio Grande Valley Queens, she spends many hours each year planning and coordinating this special event. And many thanks to Sharon Newcomer, scribe for the queens, who also puts in many hours on Festival of Tables each year.

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