St. Mary AARP holds Mardi Gras celebration

St. Mary AARP King and Queen XXIX Gordon and Faye Smith
—Tressie Richard Photos

St. Mary AARP Mardi Gras Court — Maids and dukes: Bryce and Margaret Merrill, Charlie and Ernie Comeaux, Gene and Mary Gaudet, and C.J. and Lynette Berthelot

Entertainers — Curtis Leonard, Sterling Fryou, Floyd Hymel, Paul Vella Jr. and Winston Morgan

Emcees — Tim and Debra Hymel

Gordon and Faye Smith were presented as St. Mary AARP Mardi Gras King and Queen XXIX during the 29th St. Mary AARP Chapter 4435 Mardi Gras Court and Ball held Feb. 4 at the St. Mary Senior Citizens Center, home of St. Mary AARP. Theme of the gala was “Legends of 20th Century Music.”
St. Mary AARP President Bill Darce welcomed attendees. Emcees were Morgan City Councilman Tim Hymel and his wife, Debra.
The Hymels guided the audience through the evening’s Mardi Gras court events, featuring the music of entertainers who have immortalized themselves as “Kings and Queens” of their respective musical fields.
Maids and dukes were Bryce and Margaret Merrill, representing Hank Williams and Patsy Cline; Charlie and Ernie Comeaux, representing Elvis and Priscilla Presley; Gene and Mary Gaudet, representing John Lennon and Yoko Ono; and C.J. and Lynette Berthelot, representing Frank and Nancy Sinatra.
On stage entertainers from St. Mary AARP were Curtis Leonard, Sterling Fryou, Floyd Hymel, Paul Vella Jr. and Winston Morgan. The audience was treated to song impersonations of Patsy Cline, Hank Williams, Elvis Presley, The Beatles and Frank Sinatra.
In keeping with tradition of honoring outgoing royalty, St. Mary AARP Mardi Gras King and Queen XXVIII Jerry Dubois and Peggy Verrett were recognized. Due to illness (and subsequent death on Feb. 6) Dubois was unable to attend. Verrett was accompanied by her son, Albert Verrett, for the occasion.
Presentations were made to King and Queen XXIX by Morgan City Councilman James Fontenot, keys to the city; St. Mary Parish President David Hanagriff, keys to St. Mary Parish; and St. Mary AARP President Bill Darce and his wife, Elrita, gifts. Verrett presented gifts on behalf of the outgoing royalty to the new king and queen.
A toast was also made to the reigning royalty by their family.
Linda Fabre, 2017 St. Mary AARP Mardi Gras chairperson, thanked all of the participants and sponsors of the event.
Bringing the tableau presentation to an end was King and Queen XXIX, leading the court and audience in the traditional “Second Line” around the dance floor.
The evening continued with a ball with music by “Pot 2 LA.”

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