Nelly’s Black & White Ball
Nelly’s annual Black & White Ball is consistently one of the most anticipated events of the holiday season, drawing a who’s who of St. Louis celebrities, tastemakers and civic leaders. With the help of SYNERGY Productions, Nelly created the black-tie event as a celebration of St. Louis and all it has to offer, with a guest list boasting some of the city’s top names in music and sports, media personalities and leaders in fashion, business and culture. “I wanted to start something to celebrate St. Louis—nice evening, nice time, nice night of music and entertainment,” Nelly says. “It’s a chance to give back. I thought that was a hot thing to do.”
The giving-back comes in the form of the Black & White Ball Scholarship, presented by Nelly and Lindenwood University’s Black Student Union. This year’s honorees, Jordan Powell and Leticia Goss, each received full four-year grants to attend Lindenwood University.
Amit Dhawan of SYNERGY says the choice of the Saint Louis Science Center’s EXPLORADOME as the venue for the glamorous gala this year was an easy one. “The EXPLORADOME being empty in preparation for the Science Center’s renovation was an excellent one-time opportunity to use the space as a blank canvas to create a gorgeous gala,” he says.
The evening’s entertainment kicked off with an incredible acrobatic dance performance on roller skates by the Skating Aratas, before emcees Curt Copeland of Z107.7 and comedian Darius Bradford introduced special guest Steven Jackson of the St. Louis Rams. Songstress Seviin Li performed early in the evening, followed by a surprise appearance by Taylor Dayne, who was joined onstage by Nelly. Other VIPs in attendance ranged from St. Louis Cardinals alum Jim Edmonds to Lewis Reed of the St. Louis Board of Aldermen.
 Nicole Benoist, Nelly & Elizabeth Tucker
 Seviin Li
 Taylor Dayne
 Kevin Johnson, Vincent Flewellen & Kelly Hamilton
 Jay Perez, Nelly & Bill Donius
 Ali and Murphy Lee of the St. Lunatics
 Steve and Jennifer Wiley
 Katie Clark & Jennifer Milward
 Abesi Manyando, Steven Jackson, Elizabeth Tucker & Allyson Mace
 Curt Copeland & Darius Bradford
 Dawn and Jerry Patterson
 Leticia Goss, Nelly & Jordan Powell
 Beth Bruemmer, Tijana Regzepobic, Ken Baer & Erin Cohn
 Julie, Sarah and Joe Reagan
Photo credit: Matt Kile & Timothy J. Schinsky