The Buzz: FSU College of Motion Picture Arts’ Golden Gala

Welcome to The Buzz, Tallahassee Magazine’s
column created to share who’s where and what they’re doing. While we try to flit around with all of Tallahassee’s social butterflies, the Buzz can’t be everywhere. Send the skinny on your next soiree to


Florida State’s College of Motion Picture Arts ends the year with elan at it’s Golden Gala celebration fundraiser and screening of the best-of-the-best films made by its Master’s of Fine Arts students.

Interim FSU President Dr. Garnett Stokes joined the party along with her husband, Dr. Jeffrey N. Younggren. Film School Dean Frank Patterson and his wife, Leslie France (who’s also on the Film School faculty as an acting teacher), were there too, along with Assistant Dean Fred Salancy and his wife Ann. Also on hand were Wes and Samantha Strickland, Don Hinkle and Mimi Graham, Jerry Kutz and Vera McKinney, George Cuneo, Paul and Gayle Gari Cohen and Colin and Ann Phipps.


It was a haute August night at the nightclub Recess in CollegeTown as a bevy of beautiful coeds modeled game day and seasonal fashion to support the good work of the Kidz1stFund in battling Fanconi Anemia. Haute Headz — which opened its second location, Haute Headz on Campus on nearby Gaines Street the same week — did all the models’ hair and makeup as they modeled clothes from the Trending Now boutique. Pulling the show together was director Nancy Cohen. Seen in and around the Haute Headz cabana during the event were owners, managers and stylists including Darcy Cavell, Monique Wood, Nikki Clark, B Kaufmann, Somkit Thompson and William Jones. Trending Now owner Ann Moore was also there along with her husband Guy Moore, who owns the ultimate game day store, Garnet and Gold.

Also on hand to enjoy the show were Eliza LePorin, Cameron Ulrich, Dan Parisi, Angie and Maddie Avery and Steve Harley, who won a football autographed by Jimbo Fisher in the raffle.


For Sybil Englert’s surprise announcement of her baby’s sex, her aunt, Carrie Englert Zimmerman, arranged a WOW gender reveal event. Longtime friend Cozy (Montgomery) Bixler, and husband, Tommy, hosted family and friends at their home. A 15-minute “boy or girl prediction” video with commentary by the voice of FSU football, Gene Deckerhoff, was then played which included country superstar Jason Aldean and FOX + Friends NY anchor Ainsley Earhardt announcing the baby’s gender after family and friends offered their own “votes.” The baby boy news was shared with family — Sybil’s parents, Roger and Colleen Englert, her sister, Caroline Englert, grandmother, Alice Englert, and aunt, Alice Bonn — and friends: Brett and Brady (Cureton) Thompson, Jay and Bri (Davis) Smith, Lance and Michelle (Royster) Hart, Brandon and Abby (Miller) Brooks, Sheila Simpson, Paul and Ann (Dorsey) Rubin, AnneMarie (Lewis) Singleton and Christy Daly. Sybil’s boss —Tallahassee Memorial Hospital CEO Mark O’Bryant — contributed his thoughts on video and then, as a grand finale, country superstar Reba McEntire wished Sybil good luck with the upcoming birth of her baby boy, due in early February.


One of the first tenants of the newly constructed Miracle Plaza Shopping Center was the boutique fab’rik, and owner Jennifer Benners and friends recently celebrated the shop’s first anniversary in style. Tallahassee fashionistas rejoiced over fab’rik’s on-trend clothing, shoes and accessories — as well as their after-hours shopping parties and generous donations to local nonprofits. Among those congratulating the boutique’s success were Rodger and Debbie White, shopping center neighbors Taryn Griffin of Cherry Blow Dry bar and Kathy Newlin from The Refinery, Kenzie Burleigh, Kerri Bryan, Christie Greene, Terri Jackson, Sherman Rosier and Gabby and Claudia Parisi.


Knight Creative Communities Institute (KCCI) volunteer “Community Catalysts” gathered at the Old School club during the cocktail hour to give themselves a pat on the back for a job well done and to get a preview of what the future holds for the organization. Since 2007, more than 200 community members have joined together to envision and implement several projects — including Gaines Street improvements, film and music festivals and promoting Cascades Park when it opened — aimed at making Tallahassee a more livable community.

KCCI Executive Director Betsy Couch told the assembly that while its original funding had ended, the organization was able to raise enough money to continue KCCI’s mission on a smaller scale. Among those on hand to hear the good news — many of them former and current catalysts — were Mike Pate, who was instrumental in the creation of KCCI, and his wife, Judy, Chris Heacox, Ed Murray, Lee Daniel, Julie Loveless, Betsy Barfield, Chucha Barber, Bill Berlow and Shelly Gomez.

Also on hand to enjoy libations and snacks from 101 Restaurant, as well as good conversation, were Julia Casseaux, Berenice Cox, Alyce Lee Stansberry, John Van Giesen, Candy Munz, Anthony Gaudio, Peggy Bielby, Lauren Pace, Laura Rogers, Blair Gregg, Nancy Miller, Les Abbinger, Liz Joyner, Shelia Costigan, Mike Campbell, Sandy Poreda, Rick and Jessica Minor, Tiffany Baker and Johnathan Grandage, Allison DeFoor and Allison North Jones.


First Lady Jane Marks is about to wrap up her three-year stint as Tallahassee’s “shopper-in-chief” when husband Mayor John Marks leaves office. But her Sept. 13 Local Shopping Saturday event at Miracle Plaza Shopping Center drew some special guests, the leaders of Tallahassee’s three major institutions of higher learning — FAMU President Elmira Mangum, FSU Interim President Garnett Stokes and TCC President Jim Murdaugh. Shoppers started out at Southern Comfort Outfitters and worked their way down the row of shops from Walter Green to fab’rik to Franchesca’s to a sweet stop for samples at Peterbrooke Chocolatier. The group would move on to Betton Place for a final stop at As You Wish, a new clothing and home boutique owned by Courtney Glazer with the more mature, but always fashionable, woman in mind.

Among the local shoppers were several women who have joined Jane as she took the group to more than 300 shops and businesses over the years. The “girls,” who always wear a “pop of red” for these shopping expeditions, include Thelma Nolan, Beth Miller, Tawana Hay, Brandy Sealey, Jayne Burgess, Lonnie Wesley, Linda Miles and Donna Gabordi.

Also seen scouring the racks were Dena Strickland, Cheri Raney, Florence Snyder, Tina Williams, Sue Tucker and Sara Murdaugh.

Categories: Society