Houston Restaurant Hosts Dinner & Auction Benefiting Bird Dog Rescue

Second Chance Pheasant painting by Sam Caldwel

Rainbow Lodge at 2011 Ella is bringing back its Annual Game and Ranch Dinner on Thursday, January 25. This year, all proceeds from an art auction, as well as 10% of ticket sales, benefit rescue organization Second Chance Bird Dogs. Tickets cost $215 per person and include tip and gratuity. As of press time, only about a dozen tickets remained. 

According to the Winston-Salem Journal, many hunting dogs are cruelly abandoned after the season ends. Some are deemed too old or slow to hunt anymore. The opposite is true, too, with families adopting young hunting dogs without considering their needs. “Hunting dogs are often bred to have a lot of energy, so if a dog with a lot of energy ends up in a home where it doesn’t get a lot of exercise or isn’t taught to have boundaries and mind its owner, it is often a recipe for disaster,” Second Chance Bird Dogs’ founder Michael Mapes explained to the Pyke Gear blog. “Many people don’t teach their dogs to behave in the home so very quickly the dog is out of control and bouncing off the walls.” In other words, until they get old, these are not lap dogs. According to the article, as of March 2023, Mapes had taken in, trained and rehomed over 50, the vast majority with active hunters. 

Tamales and wild game from the 2023 Annual Game & Ranch Dinner at Rainbow Lodge
Tamales and wild game from the 2023 Annual Game and Ranch Dinner at Rainbow Lodge. Photo by Paula Murphy.

The Annual Game & Ranch Dinner begins with a 6 p.m. reception featuring Angel’s Envy Bourbon and Rye. Guests will be treated to samples of each, as well as a signature cocktail created by general manager Marc Borel, who’s long been known in Houston as a well-regarded drink professional. The seated, four-course wild game dinner starts at 6:30 p.m., and dishes will feature meats such as free-range elk, nilgai antelope and rabbit. (Additional drinks beyond the spirits samples and welcome cocktail are not included.) Musician Randy Cobio will entertain the crowd live with Texas-style tunes. 

A highlight of the art auction is a commissioned painting called “Second Chance Pheasant” by Sam Caldwell, who was named a Texas State Artist in 2004. It features a pair of retrievers featured in one of Mapes’ videos. Additional Caldwell paintings and sketches will also be on display.

A 2023 Annual Game & Ranch Dinner attendee at Rainbow Lodge tried out a bone marrow luge shot
A 2023 Annual Game & Ranch Dinner attendee at Rainbow Lodge tried out a bone marrow luge shot. Photo by Paula Murphy.

As shown by the photos from last year of people enjoying bone marrow luge shots of whiskey, the Annual Game & Ranch Dinner is not just an event with a cause, but also a fun time. And, of course, no one does a wild game dinner in Houston like Rainbow Lodge. Go online for tickets and more information


Disclosure: Rainbow Lodge is an important, longtime sponsor of our work. However, this is not a sponsored article. We just really like dogs. 

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