Somehow the lazy days of summer have come and gone, and the fall social season is officially upon us. From star-studded luncheons to extravagant galas, Dallas plays host to any and every kind of philanthropic fete this fall. They benefit the arts community, health initiatives, LGBTQ causes, and more. Here are 10 top events that every Dallas socialite should have on the calendar.
Crystal Charity Ball Ten Best Dressed Luncheon, September 14
This luncheon unofficially marks the beginning of fall social season in Dallas. Luncheon chair Heather Esping welcomes guests to Neiman Marcus Downtown, where honorees — Anita Arnold, Delilah Boyd, Lisa Cooley, Jennifer Dix, Tucker Enthoven, Cate Ford, Cara French, Amy Hegi, Kimberly Whitman, and Piper Wyatt — will rock Oscar de la Renta down the runway. Robyn Conlon is the 2018 Hall of Fame honoree.
Dallas Symphony Orchestra Gala, September 15
Event chairs Lisa and Bob Segert helped recruit Tony Award-winner Kristin Chenoweth to join the Dallas Symphony Orchestra for an evening of her favorite Broadway show tunes, love songs, and classical repertoire. After the reception and concert at the Meyerson Symphony Center, the party will keep singing and swinging at the After Party. And, new this year: An upgrade to the "VIP Experience" includes an After Midnight Party from midnight-2 am at Dallas hot spot The Tipsy Alchemist.
TACA Lexus Party on the Green, October 5
The Elaine D. and Charles A. Sammons Park at the AT&T Performing Arts Center will be transformed into the bubbly-fueled fete for a good cause. There will be great food, live entertainment, and a silent auction and wine pull. Ann Mahowald and Ann Whitley Wood are the chairs tasked with making this traditionally late spring soiree the new "it" fall event. Individual tickets are $350 and benefit the North Texas arts and cultural community.
Dallas Opera First Sight/ First Night, October 11-12
The glittering two-day affair brings together Dallas' fashion lovers and opera lovers like no other event of the year. The festivities start at The Winspear Opera House with a fashion show showcasing designs from CH Carolina Herrera, followed by a lovely luncheon, chaired by Joyce Goss. First Night event chairs Shelle and Dr. Michael Sills then will welcome opera fans back the following night for a performance of Wagner's The Flying Dutchman. Both the pre-performance dinner and a late-night after party will take place under a luxe tent on the grounds of the Winspear.
Cattle Barons Ball, October 20
Gilley's Dallas has become the go-to location for this Dallas extravaganza that helps the American Cancer Society stomp out cancer. Event chairs Jonika Nix and Katy Bock have scored one of the hottest acts in country music — Zac Brown Band — along with the Charlie Daniels Band, for the Sapphire & Spurs-themed party. This is one of the city's favorite annual events, and not just because you get to wear jeans and boots.
Two x Two for AIDS and Art, October 27
This star-studded black-tie gala and art auction, now in its 20th year, is always one of the highest-profile parties of the season. And with Tim Headington serving as 2018 gala chairman, the sky might not be the limit at the Rachofsky House. This year's gala will honor artist Dana Schutz, and actor Alan Cumming will serve as master of ceremonies. The event jointly benefits amfAR and the Dallas Museum of Art.
Black Tie Dinner, November 3
The 37th annual celeb-fueled gala, taking place at the Sheraton Dallas, helps raise crucial funds for LGBTQ supportive organizations serving North Texas. Expect to see local and national figures, enjoy live entertainment, recognition rewards, auctions, and more at this, the nation's largest, one-night LGBTQ fundraising dinner. It has raised over $21 million since its inception. This year's theme is "Visible;" more details will be available here as they are confirmed.
Dallas Women’s Foundation Luncheon, November 7
Event Chairs Lael Brodsky and Tricia Miller will welcome 1,500 guests to the Hilton Anatole for this powerful luncheon. This year's event features a discussion with A Wrinkle in Time and Selma director Ava DuVernay, moderated by noted radio journalist Michele Norris. The annual luncheon is the foundation’s main fundraiser in support of its work to advance women’s economic security, leadership, childcare access, and healthcare in North Texas. Men are encouraged to attend, too.
Junior League of Dallas Milestones Luncheon, November 16
Two-time Oscar nominated, Emmy and Golden Globe-winning actress Laura Dern will headline Junior League's annual luncheon. Dern has appeared in iconic films such as Jurassic Park, Rambling Rose, and Wild. She won her first Emmy in 2017 for her role in the HBO series Big Little Lies. The Milestones Luncheon is an annual fundraiser benefiting the Junior League of Dallas Community Service Fund. Ambassador Jeanne L. Phillips is being honored. Co-chairs are Nicole Brewer and Natalie Lesikar.
Crystal Charity Ball, December 1
The gala of all Dallas galas is set to impress once again as Claire Emanuelson chairs this year's ball, themed “A Celebration in Nouvelle-Orléans." As always, the event will take place in the Chantilly Ballroom at the Hilton Anatole and all proceeds benefit the eight deserving, local charities that were selected as this year's beneficiaries.