Betty White has missed very few Beastly Balls (the Los Angeles Zoo Association’s annual fundraiser). This Saturday I caught her being zipped around the zoo on a cart while 800 plus guests (at $1,000 a pop) enjoyed cocktails, music, and seeing animals inside and outside of enclosures at the organization’s 45th yearly fete. Lance Bass, Jason Kidd, and city councilmember Tom LaBonge all received kudos from the zoo. “They named a monkey after me!” LaBonge said with gusto, “I love the zoo.” Turns out they named a howler monkey after the outgoing politician .
The party’s organizers fed the humans and the animals (I found myself grazing next to a few hippos) with bites from other L.A. institutions like Taix, El Coyote, and Pinks among many others. The to-do took place throughout the zoo so guests could party with the otters while sipping mojitos, and the attire on the invite read “casual or safari” (which explains why there were so many cheetah prints). Other notables amongst the toucans and leopards included Pauley Perrette, Sarah Michelle Gellar, and Valerie Bertinelli. The evening raised $1,044,000.