The Texas Star Awards is the premier award ceremony for Texas event professionals, drawing over hundreds of top event professionals from all over the state of Texas every year. This year, it was held on March 26, 2017 at the Hilton Anatole Hotel in Dallas, with Hello! Texas Destination Management’s Event Designer Aaron Tharp and Wilkinson Rhodes Dallas Partner India Rhodes serving as Co-Chairs. Inspired by the Star Wars movies, Aaron and India brought Cosmic Cosplay to life, transforming a hotel ballroom into an outer-space fantasy.


Drawing from the full spectrum of Star Wars lore, Aaron and India created an upscale party to wow their discriminating audience. Guests entered via a black tunnel, with streaking white lights to make them feel like they were speeding through hyperspace. Transported into a faraway universe, top Texas event planners partied with aliens at a cocktail reception inspired by the Mos Eisley Cantina, a dimly-lit tavern in "A New Hope" that’s known for its strong drinks, hot tunes, and menacing monsters.


Each table at the dinner was themed to a different Star Wars character, using linens and accessories to evoke their presence, accented with authentic collectibles from the films. Guests dressed as their favorite characters from the Star Wars anthology. Culinary creations reflected their galactic origins, and individual Death Star shaped desserts ended the evening with a bang!

Hello! Texas was honored with five nominations, and won four 2017 Texas Star Awards for the following events:

Best ILEA Team Effort over $150K – Amway Celebration of the Americas

Best Entertainment Production $25K-$75K – Marriott Artisans and Epicures

Best Entertainment Production over $75K – Amway Celebration of the Americas

Best Corporate Event $75K-$150K – Artisans and Epicures



The Texas Star Awards is a globally recognized awards competition designed to honor the exceptional professional achievements of individuals and organizations from the events industry. The awards program was produced by the Texas Chapters of the International Live Events Association (ILEA).  The Dallas Chapter of ILEA manages the process of the award submissions and judging, and the Awards Gala travels from chapter to chapter throughout the state of Texas each year. We were honored to play a part in this out-of-this-world celebration!