The attire on the invite to Nancy Davis’s annual Race to Erase MS read “GLAM ROCK”. What came through the doors of the Hyatt Regency Century Plaza was kind of all over the map. There were a handful of colorful wigs, a rock T-shirt or two and lots of vanilla cocktail hour duds. Oh well, she got butts in seats which means dollars in her 19-year battle to cure Multiple Sclerosis through her Center Without Walls Program, which funds a select network of MS research centers. It was a reality show crowd with Dancing With The Stars celebs and lots of American Idol didn’t-quite-make-its walking in the Andrew Charles Rock ‘N’ Roll fashion show. I sat behind the Odoms, Kourtney and Lamar. Her two teen step-sisters, Kendall and Kylie Jenner, modeled in the show. The live auction featured a shopping spree with Nicky and Paris Hilton, a private yacht cruise in the Bahamas (which went for $55,000), and the signature item that always makes me cringe a bit: a puppy. I don’t seem to mind when they auction off having Wolfgang Puck pop by your house to cook dinner, but the pure bred pups being bid on kind of gives me the willies.
Teri Garr walked onstage to receive her award. This is significant as it is very hard for the actress to get around (she suffers from MS). I don’t know if it was the effort to get to the microphone or if she was just overcome with emotion, but she stopped speaking during her acceptance speech and couldn’t go on. I hope it was the latter, as she received an award from her daughter in an extremely poignant moment. There were tears all around.
Fitz and the Tantrums swanned in to sing a few tunes during dinner and were followed by American Idol David Cook and The Tenors (good looking gents from Canada who sing opera). Then Stevie Wonder took the stage and got all the little kids in the crowd up there with him and dancing (I don’t think it was intentional). He sounded great, but let former Idol contestants sing Superstition. Fail. The night ended with a couple ladies trying desperately to get one of the tenors’ attention to slip him a phone number. Success.
Photographs courtesy Getty Images for Race To Erase MS