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Texans Party, Raise Funds at Big D Gala

By Becky Taggart & Ann Bullard

Plano, TX – The Big D "Be My Valentine" Gala made a valentine out of us all. Held at Reflections on Spring Creek, this party and fundraiser brought out guests dressed in everything from long gowns to tightly pressed jeans. Preceding the gala, the North Texas American Saddlebred Horse Association presented its 2010 High Point awards along with the Texas State Pleasure Horse awards. Whether you won an award or won a prize in the many items that were raffled, a good time was the name of the game for the evening.

The event raised $7,500 for the April 28-May 1, 2011 show that benefits Scottish Rite Hospital. Merrill Murray, Versailles, KY, will judge the event, to be held at the Las Colinas Equestrian Center, Irving, TX.

Until this year Milligan Stable hosted a silent auction and fish fry as the Big D fundraiser. Member Tracey Hall’s idea to have a gala and raffle proved to be a tremendously successful one. With a live band and comedians to entertain, Texas showed up to party and there was not a seat left in the house. With a buffet dinner that was way beyond the normal fundraiser fare, a cash bar and a dance floor, everyone got in the spirit of the evening.

"The Gala was a real departure for Big D members," said Big D treasurer, Nancy Lassiter. "The committee that put it together did a beautiful job. We hope we have created a base we can continue to build on."

Tickets for the items to be raffled went like hotcakes. All Dallas area and many Houston Saddlebred and Walking Horse barns, along with individual members, donated baskets ranging from horse items to wine and gourmet-themed goodies. Individual items ranged from tickets to the symphony to a Glock 19 pistol and weekend vacation. They even raffled the fabulous roses decorating each of the dinner tables. Cheers went up every time Big D President Allison Simpson read off a ticker number.

Lassiter said members were already talking about ‘next year’. Success bodes well that this will become an annual event.

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