Photo by Ashley Gongora

Dallas fashionistas didn't need to travel to New York Fashion Week for a high-profile runway show — designer Adam Lippes debuted his spring/summer 2024 collection right here in Big D, as part of the 48th annual Crystal Charity Ball Ten Best Dressed Women of Dallas event.

The luncheon and fashion show, which many consider the kick-off to fall society season, returned to its usual format at Neiman Marcus downtown, chaired this year by Patty Leyendecker. Hunky models in tuxedos welcomed a who's who of the city's philanthropic queens to the first floor, where they sipped Champagne and sparkling water surrounded by perfume and jewels.

Then it was upstairs for the fashion show, where Neiman Marcus' Ryan Ross, the Dallas Cowboys' Charlotte Jones, and 2023 Crystal Charity Ball chair Angie Kadesky conveyed the nonprofit's mission to the attendees: to fund seven children’s beneficiaries with a collective need of $6.6 million.

This is partly done with major help from this year's Ten Best Dressed, who all strutted down the runway in Lippes' latest, in front of the designer himself. Marybeth Conlon, Monica Eastin, Kim Hext, Libby Hegi, Meredith Land, Ann McPherson, Wendy Messmann, Kim Quinn, Lisa Rocchio, and Sunie Solmon were selected for this honor by members of the Crystal Charity Ball committee.

Claire Emanuelson was also announced as this year's Hall of Fame honoree, a distinction earned after being named to the Ten Best Dressed list for three consecutive years.

After channeling tropical vacation vibes with the fashion show, attendees were whisked up another few floors for an elegant luncheon of Maine lobster salad and a passion fruit tart, complemented by rosé, Sancerre, and bubbly.

Spotted among the ladies (and gents) who lunch were Lisa Cooley, Priscilla and Chaz Martin, Lisa Laughlin, Susan Geyer, Susanne Eades, Kelli Ford, Electra Ford, Gabrielle Gilmore, Karen Dollar, Lisa Woodruff, Delilah Boyd, Carole Ann Brown, Cecy Feld, Lilian Dona, Lisa Meyer, Marlene Cox, Lianne Bernstein, and Stacey Walker.

The independent nonprofit's grand finale, the Crystal Charity Ball, is set for December 9 at the Hilton Anatole. This year's artful theme is "Masterpieces in the Making."

Since 1952, Crystal Charity Ball has distributed more than $190 million to the children of Dallas County. The 2023 recipients include:

After-School All-Stars
Buckner Children and Family Services
Fair Park First
Family Gateway
Metrocare Services
The Salvation Army of North Texas
YMCA of Metropolitan Dallas

2023 Crystal Charity Ball 10 Best Dressed luncheon

Photo by Ashley Gongora

Wendy Messmann walks the runway in the Adam Lippes fashion show.

Ad Placement 300x100
Ad Placement 300x600

CultureMap Emails are Awesome

Wealthy suburb's big holiday spenders top week's 5 hottest Dallas headlines

This week's hot headlines

Editor's note: A lot happened this week, so here's your chance to get caught up. Read on for the week's most popular headlines. Looking for the best things to do this weekend? Find that list here.

1. Wealthy Dallas suburb boasts the 3rd biggest holiday spenders in U.S. According to a new study by Wallethub, Santa's gonna be working overtime to fulfill the orders for residents of Frisco this holiday season. The personal finance experts have determined Frisco is the U.S. city with the No. 3 biggest holiday spending budget in 2023. Shoppers in the affluent Dallas suburb are expected to spend $3,546 this festive season.

2. Dallas-Fort Worth keeps winning streak with new movie filming in Granbury. Everyone loves when a movie filming is in town, and there's one going down right now in Granbury, the quaint town 70 miles southwest of Dallas. Oh and it's a holiday movie, which makes it even fuzzier. According to a release, it's called A Christmas Heart, and is a drama about faith, family, and forgiveness.

3. Dallas chef returns with innovative Mexican restaurant at West Village. A Mexican restaurant from Dallas-based Local Favorite Restaurants has debuted at the West Village: Called UnaVida, it's at 3699 McKinney Ave #307 in the former Taco Diner space, with a menu created by Executive Chef of New Concept Development, Chef Matt McCallister.

4. Post Malone collaborates on new line of Dallas Cowboys hoodies and T's. Post Malone gave us Dallas Cowboys-adorned chicken tenders, he gave us Cowboys drink cups, now he gives us Cowboys-themed hoodies. The rapper, singer, and native Texan - a self-professed die-hard Dallas Cowboys fan - has debuted a limited-edition collection of Post Malone x Dallas Cowboys merchandise featuring T-shirts, sweatshirts, hoodies, and shorts.

5. Unprecedented round of new concerts headed to Dallas in early 2024. Concert season is alive and well for 2024, with a bounty of tours in the works for spring and early summer. Eight major tours were announced on November 28, featuring a variety of well-known acts, from iconic rappers to seminal rock guitarists.

Universal theme park in Frisco will be a first-of-its-kind Kids Resort

Theme Park News

The big splashy theme park coming to Frisco has a name and identity: Called Universal Kids Resort, it's from Universal Destinations & Experiences, a division of Comcast NBCUniversal, and is the company's first-ever theme park designed specifically for families with young children.

Previously described as a "family-friendly" concept, it's doubling down on the "kids" element, vowing to bring an innovative style of storytelling to a new, younger audience. So, more Disney-ish.

According to a release, Universal Kids Resort will include a theme park featuring immersive themed lands that bring Universal's characters and stories to life in ways that will wow the youngest theme parkgoers.

It will feature family-friendly attractions, interactive and playful shows, unique merchandise, fun food and beverage venues, and character meet & greets.

A resort area will include a 300-room themed hotel, giving families a place to stay and to play.

"Universal Kids Resort will inspire the unbridled creativity of kids through imagination, discovery and most importantly – play," says Universal Creative president Molly Murphy in a statement. "We're designing the resort so kids and families can feel the thrill of being physically immersed in their most beloved stories and characters."

It'll be set in green landscape with a distinctive look, feel, and scale specifically for younger kids. Progress on the new concept is underway, following a groundbreaking in November. With more details about Universal Kids Resort to come.

Singer Michael Bublé to make appearance in Dallas for his new whiskey

Less burn, more Bublé

Singer Michael Bublé has made a career using his voice to enchant millions of fans, but he'll be using his voice in a different way when he stops in Dallas on December 6 in support of a new whiskey he's released.

Called Fraser & Thompson, it's a North American whiskey launched in 2023 by Bublé and his partner Paul Cirka, a Master Distiller and Blender with a goal to create an aromatic and approachable new-to-world whiskey.

Bublé will be at Spec’s Wines & Spirits at 9500 N. Central Expwy. on December 6 from 4-5 pm.

According to a release, he’ll be at the brand’s "Easy, Now" lounge experience (IE, the events space at Spec's), where consumers over 21 can try samples.

Fans are encouraged to arrive early in order to ensure they are able to meet Bublé during the allotted time.

Retailing for $29.99 with the catch phrase, "Less burn, more Bublé," the whiskey is so new that its website is still under construction.

The release describes it as having sweet fig and blood orange on the nose, with a subtle finish of caramel, vanilla, and a hint of spice.

“Michael and I bonded over our shared passion for whisky, and wanted to create a blend that was flavorful but more light-hearted than the category at large can be known for," says Fraser & Thompson co-founder Cirka.

According to Bublé, the name Fraser Thompson references a location in his hometown Canada.

"I spent many summers with my grandfather at the confluence of the Fraser and Thompson rivers in British Columbia," Bublé says. "When I heard Paul’s vision for creating a new kind of whiskey, I knew instantly what I wanted to call it. For the last three years, we worked together to perfect a whiskey blend that is equally elegant and approachable."

Bublé, of course, is doing just fine, even before making the jump into the celebrity liquor game. He's released 11 albums in his 20+ year singing career, selling millions of albums and almost singlehandedly reviving the jazz standards genre.

He's also not new to the beverage world, having partnered with Pepsi on a series of amusing commercials for their Bubly sparkling water.