No Horsing Around, But a Pegasus? That’s Perfect

Henry, a bejeweled horse borrowed for this year’s Dallas-themed Mad Hatter’s Tea on April 20, may have been a ‘mane’ attraction as he walked into the Dallas Arboretum. Still, it was Prashe Shah who took home the ‘most true to theme’ award with her giant Pegasus sign-inspired hat.

Henry, borrowed by Amber Griffin for the event, had to make a quick exit after his runway-esque debut (bringing in animals from outside is a no-no at the Arboretum).

However, his absence left no shortage of other hats that took the saying ‘everything’s bigger in Texas’ seriously at the popular annual event hosted by the Women’s Council of the Dallas Arboretum benefiting A Woman’s Garden.

Linda Burk won the ‘best big over-the-top hat’ prize for her State Fair-themed hat, complete with a Ferris wheel and fair food.

The best use of botanical components award was a tie with Marena Gault and Elizabeth Smith. Venise Stuart won the prize for best fascinator while Debbie McKeever and crew swept (literally, the hats were tall, and the wind was fierce) the best group hats category with their intricate arboretum-themed hats. The People’s Choice Award was awarded to Robert Wilson for his hat, which included nods to Big Tex, Reunion Tower, and more, by Women’s Council President Lisa Loy Laughlin and Mad Hatter’s Tea Chair Claire Catrino.

Sharla Bush and Terry Irby won best in show for their elaborate, flower-adorned hats.

Rachel Snyder

Rachel Snyder, deputy editor at People Newspapers, joined the staff in 2019, returning to her native Dallas-Fort Worth after starting her career at community newspapers in Oklahoma. One of her stories won first place in its category in the Oklahoma Press Association’s Better Newspaper Contest in 2018. She’s a fan of puns and community journalism, not necessarily in that order. You can reach her at

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