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Dinner in the Wild: Night at the Museum Gala Sells Out

MUSEUM OF NATURE & SCIENCE’S DINNER IN THE WILD: NIGHT AT THE MUSEUM GALA SELLS OUT WITH CROWD OF 1,700 EXPECTED NOVEMBER 17

Visitors will get a sneak peek at Perot Museum’s 11 galleries, including chance to “fly like a bird,” try out a myoelectric arm and much more.

DALLAS (November 3, 2011) – Earlier this summer Forrest Hoglund, chair of the Perot Museum expansion campaign, announced “Let’s get it done,” a battle cry party chairs and host committee used while working to close out the $185-million campaign to build the new Perot Museum of Nature & Science. The announcement came in conjunction with several generous challenge grants including those offered up by Atmos Energy and Highland Capital Management for this year’s Dinner in the Wild fundraiser.


photo credits: MNS/David Pellerin
Dinner in the Wild dinner hallDinner in the Wild dinner hall

And museum patrons responded in a big way, with more than 1,700 people rushing to buy tickets before invitations were even mailed!

“We promised this would be the biggest Dinner in the Wild event ever – and it’s going to be,” said Hoglund. “With matching grants in place, people were compelled to embrace this enormous opportunity to support science education, which is so crucial for our region and nation to compete globally.” 

The 2011 Dinner in the Wild gala is set for Thursday, November 17, 2011, at Fair Park’s Automobile Building. The theme is Night at the Museum, and it will provide guests a sneak peek of the 11 permanent galleries that will be part of the Perot Museum of Nature & Science, which is expected to open early 2013. The reception begins at 6 p.m. followed by the dinner at 8 p.m. 

Dinner in the Wild photo station

In the midst of the gala, guests will have a chance to experience exhibit prototypes and view one-of-akind pieces that will be featured in the new $185-million Victory Park museum. They’ll get to “Fly Like a Bird”, try out a myoelectric arm, test their own bridge design and dozens more hands-on activities that explore science and engineering. Surprises are in the works, and the evening ends with a deejay and dancing. 

The 2011 Dinner in the Wild event chairs are Christie and Frank Scardino, and the honorary chairs are Margot and Ross Perot. The underwriting co-chairs are Anne and Ross Helbing and Caroline and Glenn Gehan, and the auction chair is Lauren Glazer. Lending support is a blue-ribbon advisory committee that includes Museum chair Peggy Allison and her husband Richard, the Museum’s immediate-past chair Frank-Paul King and his wife EugeniaJan and Trevor Rees-JonesLyda HillMarianne and Roger Staubach, all five of the Perot children, and many others. Joining them is a dynamic 200-member host committee. 

Presenting Sponsors at the $1 million level are Dallas-based Highland Capital Management, L.P., and Atmos Energy Corporation. Dinosaur sponsors at the $50,000 level are Balfour Beatty ConstructionEmily and David CorriganCatherine CorriganCindy Thomas and Bert P. HeaddenAl Hill, Jr. Family; and Lyda Hill.

Turbine sponsors at the $25,000 level are American Airlines; Anonymous (two donors)Peggy and Richard AllisonKa and L.L. CotterHigh Bar CompanySally and Forrest HoglundSuzanne and Patrick McGeeShirley and William S. McIntyreNancy Perot MulfordPeregine GroupMargot and Ross PerotSarah and Ross Perot, Jr.Madeleine and T. Boone PickensCarolyn and Karl RathjenJan and Trevor Rees-Jones/Rees-Jones FoundationKatherine and Eric Reeves; and Deedie and Rusty Rose

Specialty Underwriters are The Garden Gate (floral underwriter), Lockton Companies (auction underwriter) and Park Place Motorcars (valet underwriter). In-kind sponsors are AndrewsBrugal RumDr Pepper Snapple GroupDrip CoffeeKetel One Vodka and Neiman Marcus

Nationally acclaimed Dallas Chef Kent Rathbun will add more spice to an already savory night by offering guests a multi-course dinner. Rathbun currently is executive chef of locally and Texas-based restaurants Abacus, Jasper’s, Rathbun’s Blue Plate Kitchen, and his latest Zea Woodfire Grill in Plano. Chef Rathbun has received numerous awards and national recognition from Bon Appétit to USA TodayThe New York Times and Wall Street Journal to NBC’s Today Show. Most recently, Chef Rathbun was featured on the Food Network’s “Iron Chef America.” 

Live auction items will include an exquisite purple fluorite on green fluorite and a calcite on amethyst gem, provided by Fine Minerals International; two first-class international tickets from American Airlines; Fulco black enamel gem embedded earrings from Verdura; an exciting African Safari from Robin Hurt Safaris; a fun-in-the-sun Jamaica package in a luxurious villa plus two American Airline tickets; a Breitling Navy watch and two tickets to the Navy gala in Washington, D.C. plus hotel accommodations at the Omni Hotel in Washington, D.C. plus airfare for two provided by American Airlines, offered by Eiseman Jewels; and a delectable progressive dinner and driver for eight, provided by Chef Rathbun

About the Perot Museum of Nature & Science
Described by The Dallas Morning News architecture critic Scott Cantrell as “the boldest piece of modern architecture to hit Dallas,” the Perot Museum of Nature & Science is designed by 2005 Pritzker Prize Laureate Thom Mayne and his California-based firm Morphosis. The new museum is currently under construction on a 4.7-acre site at 1155 Broom St. at the northwest corner of Woodall Rodgers Freeway and Field Street in Victory Park adjacent to downtown Dallas. The structure will stand approximately 170 feet tall. It is scheduled to open in early 2013.

Frank Scardino notes that in addition to “good feelings” that come from being generous, there are benefits to giving, ranging from tax deductions and donor recognition, to tickets and special invitations. And he stresses that the matching opportunity is available to anyone no matter how they choose to participate in the campaign. 

“While we’d love for people to join us for the Night at the Museum event because it’s going to be a great night, we want to emphasize that this campaign is truly for everybody,” said Frank Scardino. “Whether it’s a kid donating his or her allowance or chore money, or adults giving up their daily coffee splurge, everyone’s invited to come help us build the new Perot Museum.” 

To donate to the Perot Museum or to learn more, go to natureandscience.org. 

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About the Museum of Nature & Science
The Museum of Nature & Science – the result of a unique merger in 2006 between the Dallas Museum of Natural History, The Science Place and the Dallas Children's Museum – is an AAM-accredited non-profit educational organization located in Dallas's Fair Park. In support of its mission to inspire minds through nature and science, the museum delivers exciting, engaging and innovative visitor experiences through its education, exhibition, and research and collections programming for children, students, teachers, families and life-long learners. The facility also includes the TI Founders IMAX® Theater and a cuttingedge digital planetarium. The Museum of Nature & Science is supported in part by funds from the City of Dallas Office of Cultural Affairs, the Texas Commission on the Arts and HP. The Museum of Nature & Science also is building a new $185-million museum on a 4.7-acre site in Victory Park to complement the Fair Park facilities. To learn more about the Museum of Nature & Science, please visit natureandscience.org.

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