Dallas' Grandest Gala

Crystal Charity Ball 2017 transports generous Dallas patrons to winter wonderland

Crystal Charity Ball transports Dallas patrons to winter wonderland

Lauren Perella, Ben Perella, Pam Perella, Brandon Perella, Crystal Charity 2017
Lauren Perella, Vin Perella, Pam Perella, Brandon Perella Photo by WJNPHOTO
Gerald Ford, Kelli Ford, Gene Jones, Jerry Jones, Crystal Charity 2017
Gerald Ford, Kelli Ford, Gene Jones, Jerry Jones Photo by WJNPHOTO
Ciara Cooley, Clay Cooley, Lisa Cooley, Chase Cooley, Bela Cooley, Crystal Charity Ball 2017
Ciara Cooley, Clay Cooley, Lisa Cooley, Chase Cooley, Bela Cooley Photo by WJNPHOTO
Elizabeth Gambrell, Eric Gambrell, Crystal Charity 2017
 Elizabeth Gambrell, Eric Gambrell Photo by WJNPHOTO
Cheryl Joyner, Richard Joyner, Crystal Charity 2017
Cheryl Joyner, Richard Joyner Photo by WJNPHOTO
Bill Smith, Lynne Lowder, Crystal Charity 2017
Bill Smith, Lynne Lowder Photo by WJNPHOTO
Medley Wollennan, Brandon Perella, Crystal Charity 2017
Medley Wollennan, Brandon Perella Photo by WJNPHOTO
Stacy Walker, Reid Walker, crystal Charity 2017
Stacy Walker, Reid Walker Photo by WJNPHOTO
John Maxwell, Susan Maxwell, Mary Clare Maxwell, Nancy Knox, Crystal Charity Ball 2017
John Maxwell, Susan Maxwell, Mary Clare Maxwell, Nancy Knox Photo by WJNPHOTO
Jennifer Long, David Long, Crystal Charity 2017
Jennifer Long, David Long Photo by WJNPHOTO
Cassidy Beckwith, Michael Lamendola, Crystal Charity 2017
Cassidy Beckwith, Michael Lamendola Photo by WJNPHOTO
Emma Giuhat, William Matthews, Crystal Charity 2017
 Emma Giuhat, William Matthews Photo by WJNPHOTO
Greg Hext, Kim Hext, Christie Carter, Hudson Weichsel, Crystal Charity Ball 2017
Greg Hext, Kim Hext, Christie Carter, Hudson Weichsel Photo by WJNPHOTO
Michelle Pokorny, Steve Pokorny, Lucy Gildea, Jerry Gildea, Crystal Charity 2017
Michelle Pokorny, Steve Pokorny, Lucy Gildea, Jerry Gildea Photo by WJNPHOTO
David Shuford, Karen Shuford, Montana Shuford, Chad Shuford, Crystal Charity 2017
David Shuford, Karen Shuford, Montana Shuford, Chad Shuford Photo by WJNPHOTO
Katie Golden, Emily Jackson, Audrey Peterson, Rebecca Whitaker, Crystal Charity 2017
Katie Golden, Emily Jackson, Audrey Peterson, Rebecca Whitaker Photo by WJNPHOTO
Kristina Atwood, Francie Moody-Dahlberg, Crystal Charity 2017
Kristina Atwood, Francie Moody-Dahlberg Photo by WJNPHOTO
Dan Hunt, Toni Munoz-Hunt, Sabrina Harrison, Field Harrison, crystal Charity 2017
Dan Hunt, Toni Munoz-Hunt, Sabrina Harrison, Field Harrison Photo by WJNPHOTO
Max Korenvaes, Lauren Korenvaes, Kim Stein, Jaryd Stein, Crystal Charity 2017
Max Korenvaes, Lauren Korenvaes, Kim Stein, Jaryd Stein Photo by WJNPHOTO
Crystal Charity Ball 2017 decor
Opulent floral arrangements were draped with crystals. Photo by WJNPHOTO
Chantilly Ballroom, Crystal Charity Ball 2017
Tom Addis transformed the Chantilly Ballroom into a magical winter wonderland. Photo by WJNPHOTO
Crystal Charity Ball 2017 entrance
The lobby was made to look like an opulent Alpine chalet. Photo by WJNPHOTO
Hudson Wilson, Erica Wilson, Crystal Charity 2017
Hudson Wilson, Erica Wilson Photo by WJNPHOTO
 Mark Robbins, Katie Robbins, Kristi Meinecke, Chris Meinecke, Crystal Charity Ball 2017
 Mark Robbins, Katie Robbins, Kristi Meinecke, Chris Meinecke Photo by WJNPHOTO
Jenna Potts, Brennan Potts, Crystal Charity 2017
Jenna Potts, Brennan Potts Photo by WJNPHOTO
Crystal Charity Ball 2017 silent auction
Silent auction items. Photo by WJNPHOTO
Crystal Charity Ball 2017 decor
A wintry vignette helped set the scene. Photo by WJNPHOTO
Lauren Perella, Ben Perella, Pam Perella, Brandon Perella, Crystal Charity 2017
Gerald Ford, Kelli Ford, Gene Jones, Jerry Jones, Crystal Charity 2017
Ciara Cooley, Clay Cooley, Lisa Cooley, Chase Cooley, Bela Cooley, Crystal Charity Ball 2017
Elizabeth Gambrell, Eric Gambrell, Crystal Charity 2017
Cheryl Joyner, Richard Joyner, Crystal Charity 2017
Bill Smith, Lynne Lowder, Crystal Charity 2017
Medley Wollennan, Brandon Perella, Crystal Charity 2017
Stacy Walker, Reid Walker, crystal Charity 2017
John Maxwell, Susan Maxwell, Mary Clare Maxwell, Nancy Knox, Crystal Charity Ball 2017
Jennifer Long, David Long, Crystal Charity 2017
Cassidy Beckwith, Michael Lamendola, Crystal Charity 2017
Emma Giuhat, William Matthews, Crystal Charity 2017
Greg Hext, Kim Hext, Christie Carter, Hudson Weichsel, Crystal Charity Ball 2017
Michelle Pokorny, Steve Pokorny, Lucy Gildea, Jerry Gildea, Crystal Charity 2017
David Shuford, Karen Shuford, Montana Shuford, Chad Shuford, Crystal Charity 2017
Katie Golden, Emily Jackson, Audrey Peterson, Rebecca Whitaker, Crystal Charity 2017
Kristina Atwood, Francie Moody-Dahlberg, Crystal Charity 2017
Dan Hunt, Toni Munoz-Hunt, Sabrina Harrison, Field Harrison, crystal Charity 2017
Max Korenvaes, Lauren Korenvaes, Kim Stein, Jaryd Stein, Crystal Charity 2017
Crystal Charity Ball 2017 decor
Chantilly Ballroom, Crystal Charity Ball 2017
Crystal Charity Ball 2017 entrance
Hudson Wilson, Erica Wilson, Crystal Charity 2017
 Mark Robbins, Katie Robbins, Kristi Meinecke, Chris Meinecke, Crystal Charity Ball 2017
Jenna Potts, Brennan Potts, Crystal Charity 2017
Crystal Charity Ball 2017 silent auction
Crystal Charity Ball 2017 decor

More than 1,500 of Dallas' most generous and glamorous philanthropists walked into a winter wonderland at the Hilton Anatole for Crystal Charity Ball, the grandest gala of the year.

The December 2 event, themed "An Evening in the Alps" and chaired by Pam Perella, was an elaborate production that transported guests to a snow-filled fantasy. The 65th annual black-tie gala is the grand finale of the social season and benefits children's charities around the city.

Upon arrival, guests — dressed in their finest ballgowns and tuxedos — walked down a pathway illuminated with snowflake projections before being ushered into what looked like an opulent Alpine chalet. Flocked Christmas trees and grand floral arrangements embellished with snow-covered branches were tucked into nooks and corners throughout the lobby. Snowy mountain scenes painted on backdrops and wintry vignettes helped bring the setting to life, as did old-fashioned toboggans and lanterns hanging on display walls.

After having portraits made by John French Photography and grabbing glasses of wine and bubbly, attendees — including Gene and Jerry Jones, Kelli and Gerald Ford, Lisa and Clay Cooley, Lynn McBee, Lisa Singleton, Elizabeth and Eric Gambrell, Cheryl and Richard Joyner, Bill Smith, Lynne Lowder, Stacy and Reid Walker, Kristina Atwood, Francie Moody-DahlbergandJeff and Susan Miller — began bidding in the silent auction. Up for grabs were magnificent trips, fine jewelry, artwork, runway fashion experiences, one-of-a-kind accessories, and many more exquisite items.

Patrons also perused the The Alpine Shop for holiday gifts, and those feeling lucky tried their hand at a casino. They noshed from generous displays of shrimp and charcuterie and nibbled smoked salmon and caviar blinis.

When it was time for dinner, the doors to the Chantilly Ballroom opened to reveal a magical winter fantasy. Event designer Tom Addis draped the room with crystals, flowers, and candle-filled glass globes suspended from elaborate table arrangements. Porcelain bowls in Tiffany boxes were placed on each chair.

Guests dined on poached lobster and grilled filet of beef with gratin Dauphinois and farmers market vegetables. Dessert was a decadent Toblerone Swiss milk chocolate mousse with honey and almond nougat, Basler Brunsli crisp, and coconut snow. 

As dinner wound down, the band Simply Irresistible from Atlanta took the stage, drawing the guests onto a lively dance floor. Casino games resumed, a drawing for a 2018 Lexus took place, and late-night coffee was served in the lobby.

The Crystal Charity Ball Committee’s sole purpose is to aid, support, and make contributions to charitable organizations dedicated to the welfare of children located in Dallas County. The ball has distributed more than $137 million since 1953.

This year's event raised an extraordinary $5.8 million.

The 2017 ball beneficiaries are Autism Treatment Center, Inc.; Big Brothers Big Sisters Lone Star; Children’s Medical Center Foundation; Dallas Holocaust Museum; Hunger Busters; Presbyterian Communities and Services Foundation; Rainbow Days; Santa Clara of Assisi Catholic Academy; The Crystal Charity Ball Educational Scholarship Project; and The Crystal Charity Ball Endowment Fund.