Well we survived. Barely. There is a reason the Nappie Awards only come around once a year – and not just because they coincide with our anniversary and that’s the way those usually work – but also I seriously don’t think anyone could handle more than one a year. They hurt. They hurt a lot.

But I’ll stop whining and get to spilling all the details of last Friday’s 2014 Nappie Awards.
Here goes …

Nappie Time!

So it was obvious it was going to be a crazy night as the Saenger lobby filled up almost immediately after the doors opened at 6 p.m., last Friday night for the 12th Annual Nappie Awards. The change to a Friday night date seemed to make it the biggest crowd ever.

Joe Cain, “Best Mobilian Ever,” was escorted by his mistresses clad in their seductive red dresses and his fellow footmarchers, the “Wild Mauvillians,” dressed in their Mardi Gras Indian attire. Chief Slac mingled with Mobile’s “Hardest Working City Leader” Sandy Stimpson and Fairhope Mayor Tim Kant, who were wearing almost the exact same outfit. Perhaps it’s a South Alabama mayoral uniform?

Speaking of politicos, Mobile County’s “Hardest Working Leader” Sheriff Sam Cochran was unable to attend, but county spokeswoman Lori Myles attended on his behalf with a cutout of his head, which she carried around all night.

Later, as she and the Cochran head accepted the Nappie, she received one of the biggest rounds of applause of the evening as she joked that everyone in attendance would get “out of jail free” cards for the evening. We’re pretty sure they wouldn’t have worked, but no word on if anyone tried it. We hope not!

But back to the cocktail hour, Chef Rob and Co. provided tasty eats, as Cammie scooped up some of her award winning ice cream for everyone. Snaparazzi Photo Booth took hilarious shots of the guests as a keepsake. It seems like some of our guests may not have realized they post those on their website. Oops.

The mingling continued, as “Best Talk Radio Host” Uncle Henry chatted with fans, as did “Best Morning Radio Show” hosts WKSJ’s Dan and Shelby, and the Zew’s Tim Camp, LeeAnn Waterrs and Gene Murrell.

Once the crowd got a little socially lubricated, everyone moved into the theater, where the night started with what has become a tradition now, the Nappie Video. This year some of our winners, including Eric Erdman “Best Solo Musician,” the aforementioned Dan and Shelby, Grant Saltz, Manager of Moe’s BBQ LoDa (Best BBQ), David Rasp, owner of Heroes (Best Sports Bar), David J. Maloney (Best Slip and Fall Lawyer), Mayor Sandy Stimpson, among others read mean things people had written about them on social media.

Lagniappe’s Gabriel Tynes and Ashley Trice researched the web for the content and chief photographer Dan Anderson filmed, directed and edited the piece. You can find the link on our Facebook page. We thank all of the “stars” of the film for being such great sports.

After the film, the Nappies started being handed out. Some highlights included the lovely Devon Walsh and Bill Riales accepting their Nappie for “Best Television Morning Show,” along with fellow WKRG folks “Best Meteorologist” Alan Sealls, “Best Sports Coverage” Randy Patrick and Mel Showers “Best Anchor.” Mel Showers always get a very warm welcome from the crowd. The man is a true legend around these parts!

WALA’s Chasity Byrd and Michael White showed why they were voted Sexiest Local News folks, and accepted the “Best Evening Television Newscast” Award on behalf of Bob Grip and Lenise Ligon.

WPMI’s Darwin Singleton and the dazzling Kelly Jones accepted Andrea Ramey’s “Best Investigative Reporter” award on her behalf and plugged their new morning show. We love shameless self-promotion! Hell, we encourage it!

David J. Maloney made a really sweet speech about his wife. The “Best Drag Queen” performer, Jawakatema Davenport was a vision in a beautiful purple dress with ruffled detail. Emily Hayes who accepted on behalf of Mod Mobilian for Best Local Website hinted they would have a huge announcement soon involving “frequency.”

Mobile’s hottest bartender Fifi Gill of Kitchen on George dazzled the crowd with a sexy dance and showed them why she had earned her Nappie. The Joe Jefferson Playhouse who won for Best Theatre Group and their production of “Legally Blonde” did a little number on stage as they accepted their award. Ben Jernigan accepted his Nappies “Best Local Band” and “Best Guitar Player” with a very heartfelt speech backed by his crew, including “Best Mobilian Right Now” paramedic Clayton Allen.

Regions, which won a Nappie for “Best Bank,” donated one of those snazzy green bikes to give away and the winner got to ride it off the stage. So cool! He even brought it to the after party.

Everyone was just in a really great mood and considerate with their acceptance speeches. It was a great night.

Well except, for the image that is still burned in the minds of everyone who saw “it” – what will now be forever known as “The Great Nappie Man Kiss of 2014.” Heroes owner David Rasp decided to lay a big wet one on Lagniappe co-publisher Rob Holbert, as Rasp accepted his “Best Sports Bar” award.

Think the Madonna and Britney kiss – just as awkward but hairier and scarier. Witnesses said tongue appeared to be involved, though Holbert refuses comment on that after repeated calls from Lagniappe reporters.

And after the final folks thanked their fans, the Old Shell Road Trolley graciously took everyone back and forth between the official after-party headquarters, Moe’s BBQ.

The after-math

So once everyone got down to Moe’s BBQ (many in pouring rain), people were sucking down their award-winning ribs as fast as they were Fireball and tequila shots. There was lots of folks posing for pictures and chatting, as people enjoyed the sounds of Lee Yankie and his band. Even though the rain tried to put a damper on the evening, there was no stopping the unstoppable.

Later, we hear things got ugly as some of the award winners and Lagniappe people closed down B Bob’s (Nappie Winner for Best Alt Lifestyle Bar and runner-up for Best Place to Shake your Booty). There was some cage dancing. We’ve heard tales of people forgetting where their cars were parked and one even thinking it was stolen (at least briefly), and at least one lost iPhone and one face plant resulting in a black eye. Oh my!

Like I said, thank God it only comes around once a year.

But looking around the room, full of doctors, dentists, and drag queens, TV stars and folks who work on our cars and tend our bars, you really can’t help but feel this is what “One Mobile” is all about.

A huge thanks to the Saenger Theatre and their awesome crew, Mary Lee Gay and her team with Brass Hat Marketing, Old Shell Road Trolley Club, Chef Rob and Co. Catering, Snaparazzi Photo Booth, Elizabeth’s Garden, Cammie’s Old Dutch Ice Cream and Moe’s BBQ, as well all of the winners, advertisers and supporters who came out to make it a truly memorable (or rather unmemorable) night!

A magical Mobile wedding

The very next night many of the Nappie Awards attendees rallied to join hundreds of other guests at the nuptials of one of downtown’s favorite couples, Johnny Gwin and Stacy Wellborn at the Museum of Mobile. The ceremony was officiated by Joe Cain and there were many touches of Mobile and the Gulf Coast highlighted throughout the reception, such as Dew Drop hot dogs, fried pickles and Flora-Bama Bushwhackers, among many other tasty treats.

Guests danced to the sounds of Cottonbird, which features familiar faces Phil and Walon. Later, the beautiful bride and her handsome groom marched out in a second line with their friends and family down the street to Veet’s led by the Excelsior Band.

It doesn’t get much more Mobile or fabulous than that! Congrats to the very happy couple. We wish them all the best!

Spotted

“America’s Got Talent” contestant and Daphne native Jaycob Curlee and his mom getting their hair done at Studio PH by stylist Tommy Rogers on Friday July 25, just before the 18-year-old flew back up to New York City to start competing in the live shows. All of the women in the MiMo and Nappie-award winning salon repeatedly called him “precious.”

Well kids, that’s all I got this issue. Just remember, whether rain or shine, dramatic or scandalous, or just some plain ol’ “Great Nappie Man Kiss of 2014” lovin’, I will be there. Ciao!