Remember to tip your server generously… SAINT LOUIS CRISIS NURSERY’s annual Celebrity Waitresses’ & Waiters’ Night takes place Aug. 18 at Plaza Frontenac. This year’s celebrity lineup, which includes Fox 2’s ANDY BANKER, KMOV anchor LARRY CONNERS, Channel 5’s HEIDI GLAUS, Mayor FRANCIS SLAY, County Executive CHARLIE DOOLEY and LN’s own TRISH MUYCO-TOBIN, will work alongside professional servers in an effort to earn tips to benefit Crisis Nursery. Reservations are available for dinner at Cardwell’s at the Plaza and Canyon Café. There also is a happy hour event at Brio Tuscan Grille and an after-party at Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse. Visit crisisnursery.com for more information.
Bravo to young Opera Theatre of St. Louis stars RENE BARBERA and soprano RACHEL WILLISSORENSEN for recently winning top international prizes for their performing excellence. Barbera, a tenor who appeared in this season’s OTSL The Daughter of the Regiment production, took home three first-place prizes (Men’s First Prize for Opera, Men’s First Prize for Zarzuela and Audience Favorite) at the Operalia Competition in Moscow. The contest, founded by PLACIDO DOMINGO, promotes the best young talent in the opera world. Meanwhile, soprano Willis-Sorensen placed first for both opera and operetta among some 3,000 young singers in Vienna’s Belvedere Singing Competition. She’ll make her OTSL debut next season as Fiordiligi in Cosi fan tutte.
GRAND CENTER INC. is looking for ideas on the theme of this year’s First Night celebration. First Night—the city’s largest New Year’s Eve party—is celebrating 20 years this year. Entries will be accepted through Aug. 26, and can be submitted by email to yourfirstnight@ grandcenter.org. Three top submissions will be selected and available for public voting on Grand Center’s Facebook page between Aug. 29 and Sept. 2. The winner of the public vote receives a free iPad. Past themes have included ‘Emerald City,’ ‘Rhythm of the Night’ and ‘FantaSea.’
Checkmate…the WORLD CHESS HALL OF FAME will officially open in St. Louis on Sept. 9. The Hall of Fame is moving here from Miami, where it has resided since 2001. The original Hall of Fame opened in New Windsor, N.Y., in 1988 and contained a modest collection, featuring a book of chess openings signed by BOBBY FISCHER and the Paul Morphy Silver Set. The collection has since grown to include a 5,000-year-old Egyptian board game, the first commercial chess computer and Fischer’s custom-made chess furniture. The new Hall, which also will house temporary exhibits, will be located across from the Chess Club and Scholastic Center on Maryland Avenue in the CWE.
Where has your Ladue News been? Friends ALEXANDRA QUIROGA and KIKI HARBOUR, both of Ladue, traveled to England last month, where they visited the mystical Stonehenge. Did you recently take your LN on a trip? Show us by emailing your photo to pressreleases@laduenews. com.