Society / The Seen

Dallas Embraces the Spirit of Taos for a Transformative Cause

Inside the Lovely, Laid-Back Fundraiser With a Mariachi Intro and Southwestern Attire

BY // 11.07.22
photography Nate Rehlander

The glorious Taos, New Mexico is dear to the heart of many travel-loving Texans. Just a road trip away, the otherworldly town is a true escape. With its defining style in mind, the Friends of Wilkinson Center, an auxiliary group that supports the organization’s mission to provide pathways of self-sufficiency with respect, hosted its ninth annual Spirit of Taos event on Friday, October 14. With Southwestern attire, a mariachi welcome, and post-dinner dancing soundtracked by the lively Jimmy Stadler Band, the annual event is one of Dallas’ most laid-back, lovely fundraisers.

Ernesto’s Music mariachi band — along with Friends of Wilkinson Center president Ellen Estee and event chairs Shannon Hanberry and Ashley White — welcomed more than 170 guests to On the Levee in the Dallas Design District, where specialty cocktails and the chance to bid on one-of-a-kind silent auction items helped set the party mood. As did Jenny Anchondo, host of CW33’s “Inside DFW with Jenny Anchondo,” who served as the evening’s emcee. As diners enjoyed cumin and coffee-rubbed filet medallion topped with queso fundido, Anchondo helped highlight the mission of the Wilkinson Center, which is currently celebrating its 40th year serving families facing critical life challenges, including food insecurity, lack of education, economic instability, unemployment, and underemployment.

Caitlin Hyatt, Karrie Cato, Ida Gleaton, Lindsay Morris (Photo by Nate Rehlander)
Caitlin Hyatt, Karrie Cato, Ida Gleaton, Lindsay Morris at the 2022 Spirit of Taos in Dallas. (Photo by Nate Rehlander)

An enthusiastic live auction, a Spirit of Taos staple, then got underway, offering bidders a chance to purchase incredible packages and a “Gift of Love,” such as food for a week for a family of five, GED test fees for three students, food for Wilkinson Center Food Pantry for a month, and job training for 10.

Visit for more information on The Wilkinson Center, and relive the Spirit of Taos fun with the gallery below. 

Don't miss out on Christmas at the Anatole
Where kids' holiday dreams come true over breakfast
Breakfast with Santa
Hilton Anatole

Curated Collection