Can you believe it? As of now, Friscovania has haunted the North Texas community for three consecutive years. When Friscovania was first conceived in 2016 to honor the legacy of our dear friend, Kelly Whaley, we were not expecting how important it would be and how greatly it would mean to so many others in our community.
Kelly’s passions were Halloween, rock music, makeup, and her young son. She was a legend already, one we never expected to be taken from us so soon. She passed away within two months of being diagnosed with stage IV breast cancer. The suddenness of our loss—of her son’s loss—left us devastated but also determined. Determined to remember her by her goodwill, determined to bring joy to others, and determined to give a future to those who needed hope in the darker times of their lives. With Kelly’s passing, we have become much more aware of always looking toward the future, informed by looking into our past.
Friscovania 2018: Through the Decades and Beyond represented the beginnings of all-new collaborations, all-new friends, and all-new honors—all with the recognition of achievements earned over the years. Once again, Friscovania teamed up with FC Dallas and was set up at Toyota Stadium, around the newly opened National Soccer Hall of Fame, which honors the long history of American soccer. Friscovania itself celebrates our past years with Kelly Whaley as well as the unity of our community each Friscovania previously. All Friscovania proceeds go to our beneficiary of the year. What we raise, we hope will help charities now and for a long time to come. This year, we collaborated with the Boys & Girls Clubs of Collin County, a nonprofit organization set out to help kids and young people lead productive and meaningful lives.
On the day of Friscovania, children’s smiles were brightened by a warm sunny afternoon. Throughout the Carnival and Food Concourses, including inside the Winners Club, all guests got the chance to have photo opportunities with fantastical characters, play carnival games, feast on scrumptious street food, and engage in other fun festivities, like getting glitter tattoos or fancy balloon hats. The Hall of Fame offered all sorts of additional digital experiences, from interactive big screens to VR activities, that both educated and entertained.
As the Carnival Concourse came to a close, the costume contest lit up the Hall of Fame and filled the runway with lil’ tricksters, spooks, creative characters, ghoulish groups, and decade-themed fashionistas. With so many carefully constructed costumes, choosing winners turned out to be a daunting responsibility for our six celebrity judges. They were able to enlist the help of the audience for votes on the best costumes!
Rock band Graceland Ninjaz opened the runway fashion show, where models, FC Dallas players, and Friscovania Runway Auction winners flashed outfits by Nha Khanh, FC Dallas Team Shop, and Soccer90 amidst the flurry of the band’s dancers and Solid Soles breakdancers. The grand finale brought the theme of the 70s, 80s, 90s, and Beyond to a satisfying finish when the last models on the runway walked off onto the soccer field and were whisked away by a helicopter. The models’ live feed high above Toyota Stadium gave the audience an epic farewell beyond anything they expected.
Such an exciting evening was made possible by a wide range of hard workers from over several departments. Our most heartfelt gratitude goes to all these people who helped bring Friscovania to the North Texas community, in turn garnering support and love for the Boys & Girls Clubs of Collin County:
Sponsors, Donors, and Community Partners
Friscovania could not exist without the generosity of sponsors who extend their helping hands. Their support is the core of our strength, and we would like to thank Hilti; Hollman Lockers; Mint Dentistry; Retail Plazas, Inc.; Rogers Healy; Winstar Casino; Timeless Luxury Watches; Coserv; Lam Facial Plastic Surgery; Republic Title; Rouch Architects, LLC; Herrin Real Estate; Andrew, Cassandra, and Austen Wright; Durkin’s Pizza; Bob and Amber McNutt; Chase and Ashley Russell; Jon and Annemarie Myhre; Aspen Adventure Fitness; Joseph and Kathryn Tauscher; Ann and Simon Photography; Carlotta Lennox; Gloss Luxury Rentals; Nha Khanh; TED FOX Events Artistry; Williams Construction; Lisa Bull; SoulTopia; Peerless Events & Tents; Howl at the Moon; Chase; Toyota; Vazata; Margaret and Brad Hirsh; and UREF. We must thank our branding sponsors, who have gone far and beyond to bring us all the best Friscovania possible: William Noble Rare Jewels, BCSK Holdings, Frisco STYLE Magazine, Kroger, DFW Massage Doctor, Boys & Girls Clubs of Collin County, FC Dallas, Model Behaviors, Dallas Women’s Foundation, and Fifth Generation, Inc. (Tito’s Handmade Vodka).
Additionally, we must thank our special Friscovania Advisors, Mayer and Cindy Maso, for being our leading supporters in the making of Friscovania. For the past three years, the Masos have pledged us their aid and friendship, and we are most grateful for their guidance.
FC Dallas once again graciously hosted Friscovania in the Toyota Stadium. This year was a little bit more special, as Friscovania was the first public event to be held in the brand-new National Soccer Hall of Fame. FC Dallas in conjunction with Steven Aceves from Epic Helicopters also made possible the incredible helicopter getaway that swept up our Friscovania models and dazzled guests at the end of the fashion show. For all the planning, coordination, and work the people of FC Dallas contributed to Friscovania, we thank Nick Schafer, Alan Ficek, Josh Harding, Jeff Walls, Kris Katseanes, Megan Miller, Melissa Jannetta, Tim Henning, Luis Muzzi, Marleine Calderon, Bucky Deichert, Djorn Buchholz, Heather M. Fuxa, Kristy Rempel, Evie Baker, Randy Richardson, and Gina McFarlin.
Boys & Girls Clubs of Collin County
In the early stages of Friscovania, we put out a call to find a beneficiary for the event in the area. Contacted by several amazing organizations, we ultimately chose the BGCCC. The nonprofit organization, which serves young people through afterschool programs, summer programs, transportation, and meals, comprises enthusiastically dedicated people! The funds we have raised in Friscovania will go toward the BGCCC’s transportation needs that securely and reliably deliver young people to and from their programs. The BGCCC’s eagerness to be involved, the time and resources they put in to bolster the event, and their focused teamwork cannot be overstated. We send our warm thanks to Laura Bese, and Liliana Rogers, Vanessa Ramirez, CEO & President of the BGCCC Michael Simpson, and every single BGCCC volunteer who poured their hearts into Friscovania.
The Carnival Concourse gave kids and their families plenty of fun activities to do for the whole afternoon. We would like to thank Jeff and Joyce Blitch for welcoming our guests at the gate with their jolly smiles and wagon, TED FOX Event Artistry for game booths and festive décor; DFW Party Rental for the bounce houses; FemmeWerks Productions for the Bearded Lady, Strongman, and Winners Club Witch; B3 Entertainment for the magical butterfly stilt walkers; Today’s Balloons cheery balloon artists; Fun Time Entertainment for their sparkling glitter tattoos; SoulTopia and owner Michelle Welch for fortune telling booths; and the free cotton candy passed out to guests who filled out Friscovania surveys.
Near the conclusion of the carnival, the Legacy Dancers rolled out onto the stage and performed high-powered dances that awed the audience. For getting the crowd energized and ready for the costume contest, we thank Lauren Schieffer along with Legacy Dance Center Senior Drill Co., Legacy Dance Center Solo, Legacy Dance Center Duet, Richland College Dance Company, and Legacy Dance Center Tiny/Mini/Youth Drill Co.
With a whole concourse dedicated to food, guests had their pick of eats and stadium seating overlooking the tranquil view of the bright green field. We thank Egg Stand Hamburgers, Cornfetti’s Popcorn & Candy in the Carnival Concourse, Taco Taxi Company, Tutta’s Pizza, Ruthie’s Rolling Café, and JBW Vending for keeping all the superheroes, villains, monsters, and more fueled up throughout the afternoon and night.
Music and Special Talent
One of the important accompaniments to food and carnival games is the music that surrounds the space. We thank Abbi Walker and Ryan Petkoff of Abbi Walker Music, who set the crooning ambiance inside the Winners Club; and we thank the Bass Junkies, FC Dallas’s official DJs, who kept steady beat inside the National Soccer Hall of Fame and kept it going for the VIP After Party.
The night was highlighted by Bruce Manners, comedian juggler, who displayed the wonders of balance and juggling. Thank you to Bruce for keeping kids on the edge of their seats!
Music is essential to fashion shows, and live music is an even more spectacular boost to the models on the runway and the crowd around them. We would like to thank the rockers of Graceland Ninjaz for electrifying the fashion show with a set list stretching across the decades.
Costume Contest Celebrity Judges
The costume contest is one of Friscovania’s biggest draws. We are thrilled each year to include our guests as part of the show, and watching costumed kids and grownups strutting down the runway brings joy to not only us but their relatives and friends in the audience. We would like to thank our celebrity judges, who offered us their time and expertise to pick out the winners of the costume contest: Chris and Laurie King, this year’s Master and Mistress of Ceremonies who have a passion for connecting people and promoting businesses and events that let them dress up in costume; Shannon Stuart, model and actress with the Kim Dawson Agency; Leah Frazier, leading FashionPreneur™; Khanh Nguyen, the artist and mastermind behind her haute fashion label, Nha Khanh; and Libby Vincek, lifestyle blogger and brand ambassador who starred in Survivor: Ghost Island, Season 36.
Back of House
We will always be grateful for the enormous work that goes into organizing and preparing models for the runway show. With several entertainers and about forty models this year, our hair and makeup teams came well prepared to put faces and hair on. We thank our hair and makeup teams: Maria Jose and Cher Hukill; Walter Fuentes with Yvonne Coan, Michaela Lew, Paige Anderson, and Sandra Saenz; Lyndsey Peck with Shelley Stull, Katie Moyer, and Michelle Dick; and Joanna Hathcock with Meagan D’Von, Ashley Bell, JaDe Rain, Elizabeth Rist, and Katrina Dawn Morgan.
The biggest event of the night, the runway show, brings all guests of Friscovania together for live music and a stream of the latest fashions. We thank Nha Khanh, FC Dallas Team Shop, and Soccer90 for providing the outfits of the 70s, 80s, 90s, and beyond.
We must thank the models of the evening, all with Kim Dawson Modeling Agency unless otherwise noted: Thomas Mullins, Chad Rhode, Laurie Bing, Al Tidwell, Roxanna Redfoot (Campbell-Wagner Runway Models), Dean Robinson, Haley Halter, Jenn VanHook, Ella Rose, Emily Deaver, Jessica Flake, Julian Machann, Marilyn Morris, Leauren Fedak, Ashley Lacamp, Dylan Roberts, Shaun Balkum, Matt King, David McKay, David Miller, Samora Goodson, Tyler Ogden, Jeffrey Men, Rex Urquhart, Luis Enrique, Cali Stewart, Kelly Gillespie, Kalli Keith, Nina Kong, Elizabeth Freeman, Makayla Harmon, Alex Bryant, Yuan Yuan, and Sarah Blacketer, model extraordinaire.
Along with the models, FC Dallas players were invited to showcase the latest soccer styles. We thank Kyle Zobeck, Thomas Roberts, and Bryan Reynolds for being team players in the fashion show!
Last year, we offered the general public a chance to walk the runway through our Friscovania Runway Auction. This year, we offered again, and the public did not disappoint! Our auction winners got to go to lunch with leading people of the Kim Dawson Agency, get lessons and practice in their runway walk with a professional runway coach, spend time with professional models backstage, and of course, walk the runway in a high-production show. We thank our winners this year, Anika Ducich, Gretchen Wirth, Christine Kleidhege, and Katana Corning for sharing your time and passion with us.
Our runway was populated with models, players, winners, and the band, but we still had room to fit in more! We would like to thank our breakdancers, Solid Soles, for supercharging the evening with their crazy moves.
Designers, Photography, Videography, & Promotion
To record our moments now means to preserve them for moments in the future. We must thank our designers, photographers, videographers, and promoters for the digital and physical productions that allow us to look back at ourselves and contemplate what else lies in store for the future. We thank Melissa Adams and Range, Inc. for branding, creating the Friscovania Event Map, and other design needs. We thank Smile Booth for setting up in the National Soccer Hall of Fame and allowing guests to capture their costumes in professional photos. We thank Drew Nicolello from Kharis Media for all the videography, including interviews and promotional videos, that we are able to share with the public. We thank Simon Lopez Photography, along with Jacob Anderson, Rick Birt, and Kelly Williams for creative shots that become the digital quilt of Friscovania. And we thank Social Media Manager Leah Frazier and Managing Editor Lily Ounekeo for capturing in-the-moment photos and live feeds of the event to share the Friscovania experience nationwide in real time.
It takes a lot of people to run Friscovania, and the people helping those people are the directors of Friscovania. We would like to thank Photography/Art Installation Co-Directors Ann and Simon Lopez, who turned Friscovania’s environment into a gallery, organized media teams, and snapped the official photos of Friscovania. We thank Costume Contest Production & Community Co-Directors Kodi Nelson and Anna Broadfoot-Theunnissen for organizing the Legacy Dancers and costume contest celebrity judges and designing the costume contest categories and experience. We thank Music Co-Directors and costume contest MCs Kris Lezetc and Misha Sturns for communicating with our musicians and special talent, and engaging the crowd during the costume contest. We thank Cruise Director/Runway Co-Director Carlotta Lennox for guiding our auction winners, pointing guests to the fun things to do in the event, and promoting Friscovania from start to finish. We thank Carnival Games Co-Directors Holly Denny and Kendahl Airey for organizing all the Carnival Concourse, including the survey tables and the design and construction of each booth. We thank Décor Director Priya Rathod for the acquirement and perfect placement of decorations. We thank Back of House Director Katelin Burton, who was inspired so much by Friscovania 2017 that she came aboard the 2018 team and handled preparations and organization related to hair and makeup, models, and fashion labels. We thank Communications Co-Directors Leah Frazier and Lily Ounekeo for keeping the public updated on social media and for organizing event decks that helped the departments stay on track on the day of the event. We thank Sales & Beneficiary Director Matt Denny for keeping communication tight between Model Behaviors, FC Dallas, and the BGCCC, promoting Friscovania with the help of FC Dallas channels, and ensuring tickets were available and delivered to everyone in a seamless process. We thank the assistant to the main director, and communications specialist extraordinaire, Laura De la Torre, for being the liaison among all directors and their people. We thank Friscovania Director Toni Muñoz-Hunt, who, oversaw all moving parts of Friscovania. And finally, we thank Dan, Darlington, and Tennyson Hunt for their loving creative input.
When we think of the years that had come before us, our memories are of the people surrounding events. Not only do we preserve the community we know but we also allow it to grow. Our gratitude goes out to all the guests who attended this year’s Halloween extravaganza, and we hope to see new faces join us next year!
Check out our recap video below, and be sure to share your own experiences at Friscovania 2018: Through the Decades and Beyond!