Meridian Star


January 19, 2014

Assembly presents debutantes to society

MERIDIAN —     The Southern Debutante Assembly held its 2013 Presentation and White and Gold Ball on the evening of Dec. 28, 2013, at the Greenwood Country Club in Greenwood. Eighteen debutantes were presented to society at the event.

    Flickering candles in hurricane lamps lined the drive to the clubhouse entrance. Twinkle lights entwined matching topiary flanking the double-door entry and the pine garland framing the entry. Matching sprays of white tuberoses, Fuji mums, antique hydrangeas, genestra and silver dollar eucalyptus were displayed on the doors.

    Members of the assembly’s Governing Board greeted the honorees’ guests entering the foyer. Several hundred attended from around Mississippi and other states.

    On opposite sides of the foyer, consoles held matching arrangements of porcelana roses, white tuberoses, hydrangeas, bells of Ireland, dendrobium orchids, genestra and Australian eucalyptus in silver urns that were uplit by votive candles.

    Between the two sets of double doors leading from the foyer to the ballroom, a tall silver-gilt garden urn on a gilt pedestal held a large arrangement of white tuberoses, bells of Ireland, Fuji mums, antique hydrangeas, genestra, pussy willow, grevellia and areca palm fronds.

    Along the walls of the ballroom, lighted sconces displayed compact arrangements of snowflake chrysanthemums, white stargazer lilies, genestra, areca palm fronds and sprengeri fern.

    The honorees were presented before a massive arrangement of white stargazer lilies, tuberoses, gladioli, bells of Ireland, grandée blanca roses, genestra, pussy willow and grevellia displayed in a silver-gilt garden urn atop a fluted terra cotta pedestal. The arrangement was backlit by twinkle lights entwined on a white garden trellis.

    At the opposite end of the ballroom, the debutantes took their places on a dais in front of a garden trellis lined with smilax and twinkle lights. In front of the trellis stood four tall white columns, each topped with an arrangement of white tuberoses and stargazer lilies and sprengeri fern. Centered against this backdrop was a large arrangement of gladioli, Fuji mums, bells of Ireland, tuberoses, stargazer lilies, pussy willow and grevellia. Two complementary arrangements flanked the dais.

    The officers of the Cavaliers were introduced to the assembled guests. Serving this year were Walker McShan Benz of Memphis, son of Mr. and Mrs. Howard McShan Benz; Earnest Zachariah Davis of Greenwood, son of Mrs. James Wylie Davis III; David Lyon Glenn of Columbus, son of Mr. and Mrs. Robert Allen Glenn; and Claude McWilliams Mapp Jr. of Greenwood, son of Mrs. Clinton McKee Guenther and Mr. Claude McWilliams Mapp.

    Hugh Anslum Warren III of Greenwood introduced the master of ceremonies for the presentation, William Cliff Heaton of Clarksdale.

    Wearing white formal ball gowns, the debutantes carried hand-tied bouquets of porcelana roses, Vendela roses, genestra and Formosa fern.

    The pages wore long gowns of rich carmine silk and carried nosegays of magnolias and variegated holly hand-tied with white velvet ribbon.

    Throughout the presentation and introduction of the honorees, The Sessions of Jackson played traditional favorites. The band later played for dancing during the appointed hours.

    Following the presentation, the honorees and their guests enjoyed dancing and visiting at tables positioned around the ballroom floor at the White and Gold Ball.

    Each table was centered with an arrangement of dendrobium orchids and English boxwood, surrounded by flickering votive candles on a mirrored base.

    In the Garden Room, opening from the ballroom, buffet tables skirted in white linen and overlaid with gold embroidered silk organza offered an extensive array of heavy hors d’oeuvres. The focal point of the center table was a towering arrangement of antique hydrangeas, porcelana roses, grandée blanca roses, Fuji mums, tuberoses, bells of Ireland, white stargazer lilies, grevellia and Australian eucalyptus in an oversized terra cotta garden urn. Smaller complementary arrangements in matching silver vases were displayed on three-tiered silver epergnes on the two end tables.

    In a separate area of the clubhouse, Johnny Jennings of Greenwood played current favorite tunes as the pages and page escorts enjoyed refreshments, dancing and visiting. Tables skirted in holiday linens were positioned around the dance floor and centered with arrangements of Christmas greenery.

    The debutantes presented to society included: Matelyn Rivers Countiss, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. John Richard Countiss IV of Meridian. Miss Countiss was presented by her father and escorted by her brother, Henry Harrison Countiss of Meridian.

    Elizabeth Caroline Martin, daughter of Dr. and Mrs. Irvin Leroy Martin III of Meridian. Miss Martin was presented by her father and escorted by her brother, Lee Barnes Martin of Meridian.

    Elizabeth Ogden Patterson, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. William McRee Patterson of Meridian. She was presented by her father and escorted by her brother, Mr. William Russell Patterson of Meridian.

    Sadie Elyse Wilkinson, daughter of Dr. and Mrs. Brian Lee Wilkinson of Meridian. Miss Wilkinson was presented by her father and escorted by Mr. John Richard Countiss V of Meridian.

    In association with the Southern Debutante Assembly’s Presentation and White and Gold Ball, held in December, several parties honored the debutantes, pages, page escorts and others.

    Following a late-afternoon rehearsal of the Presentation on Dec. 27, a dinner party at Lusco’s in Greenwood honored eight of the season’s debutantes.

    Sharing the honors were Katherine Rivers Allen of Belzoni, Matelyn Rivers Countiss of Meridian; Kathryn Elizabeth Drumheller of Covington, Ga.; Jessica Clayton Dunn of Greenwood; Mary-Holly Kern Fleming of Itta Bena; and Elizabeth Caroline Martin, Elizabeth Ogden Patterson and Sadie Elyse Wilkinson, all of Meridian.

    Tables were centered with hurricane lamps with candles surrounded by Christmas greenery.

    Hosting the dinner party for the debutantes and their dates were Mr. and Mrs. William Henry Allen Jr., Mr. and Mrs. John Richard Countiss IV, Mr. and Mrs. Brian Richard Drumheller, Mr. and Mrs. Billy Earnest Dunn, Mr. and Mrs. Hays Edward Fleming, Dr. and Mrs. Irvin Leroy Martin III, Mr. and Mrs. William McRee Patterson and Dr. and Mrs. Brian Lee Wilkinson.

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