2021 Pet of the Year Contest
BELLAIRE • MEMORIAL • RIVER OAKS • TANGLEWOOD • WEST UNIVERSITY

Tanglewood Garden Club’s 65th Anniversary

Jordan Magaziner Steinfeld
Click the Buzz Me button to receive email notifications when this writer publishes a new article or a new article in this column is published.
Kay Theede, Barbara Forbes

Luncheon chairs Kay Theede and Barbara Forbes along with Laura Winslow posing with a mannequin donned in a 1960s dress with a matching jacket, purse, shoes and hat.

This spring, the Tanglewood Garden Club celebrated its 65th anniversary in style at the Houston Country Club. Garden club members traveled back in time to the ’50s and ’60s by reliving beautiful memories. 

Ladies enjoyed the Hall of Fashion, in which mannequins were dressed in outfits from those decades. Luncheon co-chairs Kay Theede and Barbara Forbes said it wound up being a hall of memories and that it was really touching for a lot of women. 

Members contributed dresses, gowns and accessories from this era for the Hall of Fashion. Next to each outfit was the name of the person who originally owned the clothing and a memory about the garments.

The luncheon honored Ms. Lillian Illig, the first president of the Tanglewood Garden Club, as well as its other founding members. Her son, Dale Illig, presented a video tribute he made to her and gave a moving speech in her memory. 

Dale Illig created this video tribute in honor of his beloved mother, Ms. Lillian Illig, the first president of the Tanglewood Garden Club, for the club's 65th anniversary.

“There is no other group of people in the world that knew and remember my mother like you all do,” he said. “Being here today is the closest thing I can get to being with my mother and I really miss her; I miss her positive, upbeat attitude, her can-do spirit and her appreciation of the very simple things in life….” Dale continued to talk about how Ms. Lillian would walk Tanglewood Boulevard and give out flower arrangements to strangers, neighbors and friends alike. 

Learn more about Ms. Lillian – and how her legacy continues today – in this recent story on the Tanglewood Garden Club by Andria Frankfort. What was especially meaningful for us here at The Buzz, and to Dale and many other Garden Club members, was the present-day connections uncovered by this story.  

Gigi Shapiro, who has been a member of the club since moving to Tanglewood in 1996, set out to discover what happened to Ms. Lillian’s garden and, in particular, her beloved gardenia plant. She knocked on the door of the new home on Ms. Lillian’s lot. 

“I started by asking {Melissa Reichert, current homeowner} if she was aware that she had the most famous garden in Tanglewood,” Gigi says. “’No,’ she told me. So I asked if she was aware that the first lady of Tanglewood lived there. ‘No.’ So I said, ‘Do I have a story for you!’

Read more.  

Congratulations to all Tanglewood Garden Club members for an incredible 65 years, and here’s to many more. 

Editor’s Note: Buzz readers first met Ms. Lillian Illig in April 2006 in the article The Constant Gardeners. We also ran a tribute for her 100th birthday. 

  • Kay Theede, Barbara Forbes

    Luncheon chairs Kay Theede and Barbara Forbes along with Laura Winslow posing with a mannequin donned in a 1960s dress with a matching jacket, purse, shoes and hat.

  • Jackie Wygant, Verna Maye Vacker-Rust

    Mrs. Jackie Wygant, president of the Tanglewood Garden Club, with her mother's wedding suit from 1959. Her mother, Mrs. Verna Maye Vacker-Rust, was married at Grace Methodist Church in the Heights.

  • Kris Solberg

    Mrs. Kris Solberg with her 1960s prom dresses. She is holding the photos of her wearing the dresses, taken the nights of her prom.

  • Gloria Hill

    Mrs. Gloria Hill poses with her 1966 prom dress.

  • Gloria Hill

    Mrs. Gloria Hill posing with her 1950's childhood dress. She loved this dress as it has rhinestones sewn on it and when she wore it she "thought she was a princess with all the diamonds."

  • Pat Medors and Kathy Louise Reiter-Vasquez

    Mrs. Pat Medors and her sister, Mrs. Kathy Louise Reiter-Vasquez, posing with the 1950s hand-knitted clothing and accessories created by their mother, Mrs. Zuma Palmer Reiter.

  • Wedding dress

    Wedding dresses worn by Mrs. Kay Theede's mother, Mrs. Dorothy Whiddon-Rogge in 1951 and Mrs. Leigh Vasnin's mother, Mrs. Lillian McKinnie-Whelan, in 1959.

  • Culottes

    1960s culottes with coordinating cape-style jacket.

  • Constance Cuadra, Laura Winslow

    Miss Constance Cuadra and Miss Laura Winslow pose with a 1950s Utah Tailoring Mills suit with custom-made handbag and shoes.

  • Cathy Fitch

    Mrs. Cathy Fitch poses with a hand-crocheted Mohair coat from 1964. The coat was crocheted by Reverend Mother Odile Angeline Lapeyre, RSCJ, Headmistress, Duchesne Country Day School 1963-1965 for Cathy's mother, Mrs. Phyllis Cline Leggett.

  • Kay Theede, Barbara Forbes
  • Jackie Wygant, Verna Maye Vacker-Rust
  • Kris Solberg
  • Gloria Hill
  • Gloria Hill
  • Pat Medors and Kathy Louise Reiter-Vasquez
  • Wedding dress
  • Culottes
  • Constance Cuadra, Laura Winslow
  • Cathy Fitch

Kay Theede, Barbara Forbes

Luncheon chairs Kay Theede and Barbara Forbes along with Laura Winslow posing with a mannequin donned in a 1960s dress with a matching jacket, purse, shoes and hat.

Jackie Wygant, Verna Maye Vacker-Rust

Mrs. Jackie Wygant, president of the Tanglewood Garden Club, with her mother's wedding suit from 1959. Her mother, Mrs. Verna Maye Vacker-Rust, was married at Grace Methodist Church in the Heights.

Kris Solberg

Mrs. Kris Solberg with her 1960s prom dresses. She is holding the photos of her wearing the dresses, taken the nights of her prom.

Gloria Hill

Mrs. Gloria Hill poses with her 1966 prom dress.

Gloria Hill

Mrs. Gloria Hill posing with her 1950's childhood dress. She loved this dress as it has rhinestones sewn on it and when she wore it she "thought she was a princess with all the diamonds."

Pat Medors and Kathy Louise Reiter-Vasquez

Mrs. Pat Medors and her sister, Mrs. Kathy Louise Reiter-Vasquez, posing with the 1950s hand-knitted clothing and accessories created by their mother, Mrs. Zuma Palmer Reiter.

Wedding dress

Wedding dresses worn by Mrs. Kay Theede's mother, Mrs. Dorothy Whiddon-Rogge in 1951 and Mrs. Leigh Vasnin's mother, Mrs. Lillian McKinnie-Whelan, in 1959.

Culottes

1960s culottes with coordinating cape-style jacket.

Constance Cuadra, Laura Winslow

Miss Constance Cuadra and Miss Laura Winslow pose with a 1950s Utah Tailoring Mills suit with custom-made handbag and shoes.

Cathy Fitch

Mrs. Cathy Fitch poses with a hand-crocheted Mohair coat from 1964. The coat was crocheted by Reverend Mother Odile Angeline Lapeyre, RSCJ, Headmistress, Duchesne Country Day School 1963-1965 for Cathy's mother, Mrs. Phyllis Cline Leggett.

To leave a comment, please log in or create an account with The Buzz Magazines, Disqus, Facebook, Twitter or Google+. Or you may post as a guest.