Lifestyle design mother-daughter duo, Annia Jenkins and Cynthia Hightower-Jenkins recently hosted a lavish Mardi Gras party in Dallas called Krewe de Etoile. Known as the official Mardi Gras Krewe of Dallas, the team threw its third charity gala with entertainment, gourmet food and sips surrounding the theme of “A Whimsical Wonderland.” The team wanted to celebrate the true essence of Mardi Gras culture.
“Often time, we have to dispel the myths that are for any, synonymous with Mardi Gras, such as bad behavior,” said Annia Jenkins. “It’s about elegance, Royalty, over-the-top themes, unfathomable headdress and costumes with a unique terminology of its own.”
In 2009, Annia moved to Dallas and began to inquire about the Metroplex celebration for Mardi Gras as the season drew near. She found that many didn’t have inclination as to what it was, others hadn’t heard of it, and the rest were only familiar with the surface level party elements. The limited understanding for the celebration sparked a movement for Jenkins. She decided to call her business partner and mother, Cynthia to contemplate how to introduce the authentic culture and spirit to the area. By 2013, the duo launched Krewe de Etoile for the expressed purpose of presenting a Mardi Gras-styled Gala Ball and to make certain that the Dallas Metroplex would become more Mardi Gras savvy.
Krewe de Etoile brought clarity of Mardi Gras to Dallas with stilt walkers, theatrics, noted musicians, including a New Orleans Jazz Band, and an indoor Parade of the Royal Court with bead and trinket tossing.
The spotlighted charity CitySquare was selected by Krewe de Etoile to be the 2018 honoree and monetary awarded. CitySquare is an effectively noted program designed to fight poverty and homelessness through service, advocacy and friendship. For more information about CitySquare, please visit https://www.citysquare.org/.
Krewe de Etoile also chooses a person or organization as the recipient of its “Barry Annino Wings of Altruism Crystal Award” presented to an honoree whose unselfish work and giving reaches far beyond the norm. Nick Marino, Jr., director of Tango Tab, will receive the 2018 Crystal Award.
The event was hosted at the Fashion Industry Gallery (FIG) in downtown Dallas and included notable names like Dallas Cowboys legend and Hall of Famer Tony Dorsett as King, Donna Richrdson-Joyner as Queen, Jennifer Meyers from FOX 4 DFW, Larry Hamilton of Hamilton Properties and the Lorenzo Hotel, and Miss Texas 2017-2018 Margana Wood.
Photos by Wesley Grimes