Society / Featured Parties

Houston’s $1 Million Night of Cirque du Soleil Intrigue Takes Over 713 Music Hall and Boosts The Children’s Fund

Young Couples Play Casino Games, Bid on Dream Getaways and Do Good

BY // 05.18.23
photography Wilson Parish

What: The Children’s Fund annual gala

Where: 713 Music Hall

PC Moment: This Children’s Fund night was filled Cirque du Soleil style entertainments at Houston’s 713 Music Hall in the POST Houston mixed-use center. Think stilt walkers, aerialists, costumed characters, hypnotic dancers and even squawking birds. Yes, it was all there in the spirit of the gala theme — “An Evening of Mystère!”

Close to 650 young couples with a bent toward philanthropy gathered in black-tie attire for the evening that included H-Town Casino games. Party goers tried the luck at roulette, poker, craps and black jack. Cafe Natalie Catering provided the party food. The sounds of Danny Ray and the Atlantic Street Band provided the dancing beat.

Compton (Photo by Wilson Parish)
Children’s Fund presidents John Hays Compton & Carrie Compton at the 2023 gala held at the 713 Music Hall (Photo by Wilson Parish)

Helming the colorful evening were gala co-chairs Mimi and Chad Meachum and Allison and Chris Wallace with an assist from The Children’s Fund presidents Carrie and John Hays Compton. Key players in the event also included auction co-chairs Jennifer and Jack Doherty, Blair and Jack Foster, and Francis and Jim Thomson. 

Spearheading corporate development for The Children’s Fund were Sarah and Jonathan Pelayo and Michelle and Paul Williams.

It was one of the all-volunteer nonprofit’s most successful galas, bringing in $1 million in one night. That brings the total raised during the 51 years of this event to $18 million, each year contributed to local children’s charities. Each year the fund receives grant requests from hundreds of nonprofits. Fund membership rigorously reviews and screens all grant requests, ensuring that all capital is allocated where it will make the greatest impact.

The 2023 proceeds will be distributed to Champion Institute, PAIR Houston, Foster Care Advocacy, Clothed by Faith and San Francisco Nativity Academy. Heading selection of the charities to receive funds raised at the gala were The Children’s Fund presidents-elect Karla and Nicholas Wiedemann.

FosterThomsonDoherty (Photo by Wilson Parish)
Auction co-chairs Blair & Jack Foster, Frances & Jim Thomson, Jennifer & Jack Doherty at The Children’s Fund gala (Photo by Wilson Parish)

The success of the evening was due in part to support from lead sponsors Bayou City Energy and Mach Resources.

Further adding to the proceeds was Montalbano Auction Company, which oversaw the bidding on such items a VIP Grand Prix experience, a grand Italian golf getaway, yachting in the Virgin Islands and a South African safari.

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