An Affair to Remember
Story by Bill Bannister | Photos by Don Perry
Black tie events happen in Memphis almost year-round, but when it’s a red tie happening, you can bet it’s going to be something special. The 41st annual Mid-South Heart Ball, held in the grand ballroom of the Peabody Hotel was a red tie affair to remember. Heart disease is the number one killer of men and women in the U.S., claiming nearly 800,000 lives each year, and this evening was held to proudly honor and celebrate those individuals who have decided to have a positive impact in fighting this deadly disease.
The nearly 700 guests in attendance were greeted at the mezzanine entrance with glasses of champagne and ushered into the social reception and silent auction. Items up for bid included fine wines, framed artwork and travel packages to great getaways like Panama, Antigua and St. Lucia. Also offered were dinners at fine Memphis restaurants like Folks Folly and Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse, Roundtrip tickets from Southwest Airlines and even an autographed guitar from Alan Jackson. There were passes to the Brooks Museum, The Georgia Aquarium and Disney World, as well as weekends at Henderson Beach Spa and Horseshoe Casino Hotel in Tunica. Kendra Scott Jewelry was on hand with a Mystery Jewelry Pull and the chance to take home some fantastic jewelry for an $80 donation to the American Heart Association.
Red bowties were offered at the door by Mo’s Bows and a photo booth by Hot Shots was available for those who wished to take home a personal memento of the evening. Dinner was served in the Grand Ballroom. It was a mouth-watering three course affair that started with a hearts of romaine salad with merlot spiced poached pear tomatoes, cucumbers and candied walnuts and a Stilton dressing, followed by filet mignon with port wine sauce and seared black cod with Morel mushroom sauce, cocoa bean puree, brocollini and oven-fried tomatoes along with freshly baked specialty rolls and breads with sweet cream butter. Dessert was a trio-chocolate mousse, flourless chocolate cake and pecan pie with a key lime tart.
After dinner, guests danced into the night to the sounds of live music by Burning Las Vegas, sponsored by Stern Cardiovascular Foundation. FedEx sponsored this year’s Open Your Heart tribute to 2017 Honoree John Daniel and his wife Leslie Daniel. Other sponsors included SunTrust Bank, Cigna, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Tennessee, First Tennessee Foundation, NexAir, Dunavant Enterprises, Methodist Lebonheur Healthcare, Legacy Wealth Management and Regions Bank. The 2017 Mid-South Heart Ball broke attendance and fundraising records for the American Heart Association and made great strides towards improving the health landscape in our local community.