Natalie Cole and Tipper Gore were honored at a July 5 concert, “An American Songbook,” which raised $26,000 for the John Wayne Cancer Institute Chapter II. Cole was presented with her award by Chapter II President Susan Thacker at the event held at the Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza; Gore accepted hers via videotape. The New Horizon Singers (an 80-voice choir) and members of the New West Symphony performed under the direction of Sheldon Cohen, former assistant conductor of “The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson,” for about 900 guests. Cole was singled out for her resilience and ability to overcome obstacles and adversity, and Gore was chosen for her commitment to addressing mental health and its impact on a person’s ability to fight physical illness.
KCRW-FM’s eighth annual “Summerday International Wine, Dine and Travel Auction” on June 21 grossed $152,000 to benefit the Santa Monica College-based public radio station. Among the 425 guests were Sally Kirkland, Arianna Huffington, Sandra Bernhard, Tippi Hedren and L.A. Dist. Atty. Gil Garcetti. Auctioned items included Avalon Tour’s Tuscany Culinary / Wine Getaway at Villa Lucia and Bordeau collections. A buffet was prepared by Leonard Schwartz, executive chef of Maple Drive. A wine tasting followed, with 2,500 KCRW supporters sampling more than 300 wines, microbrews and spirits.
Comedians John Mendoza, Chris Fonseca, Dana Gould and Jake Johannsen entertained 180 guests at Shane’s Inspiration: A Boundless Playground’s inaugural fund-raiser June 15 at Cafe La Boheme in West Hollywood. More than $30,000 was collected to help build California’s first “Boundless Playground” in the L.A. area, allowing kids in wheelchairs to play side by side with able-bodied peers. Shane’s Inspiration was founded by Scott and Catherine Williams in memory of their son, Shane Alexander, who was born with spinal muscular atrophy and died at 14 days.
Has your group held a charity fund-raiser recently? Let us know about it. We will report on selected local benefit projects and events. Please tell us about your organization and the charity you support, how much you raised, how the charity uses your gift and the details of your event--what, when and where. Send a letter or press release to Social Sunday, Life & Style, Los Angeles Times, Times Mirror Square, Los Angeles, CA 90053, or fax to (213) 237-4888.