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Celebs get scoop on politics

GOOD MORNING, voters: “Tap your spoon on the underside of the table for the candidate of your choice, as I announce their names–alphabetically,” said Carl Reiner Saturday night to the packed La Costa ballroom of showbiz and sports celebs plus charity heavy-hitters on hand for the 19th annual ERAS (Educational Resource and Services) Center’s Carl Reiner Tennis and Golf Tourney. “George Bush”–tap, tap, tap. “Bill Clinton”–tap, tap, tap. “Ross Perot”–deafening tapping! I kid you not. And Perot’s not even on the California ballot today–and no write-ins are counted. … The La Costa weekend raised $100,000 for the ERAS center (headed by Barbara Cull), serving special education needs from birth to adulthood. The celebrity show, which Reiner hosts annually, has been the springboard for many comics. It seems times of stress–and these are certainly those times–provide comics with unlimited material to lighten our lives. This was the hysterical group of comics: George Lopez, Jeff Rothpan, Scott Record, Dennis Wolfberg and George Wallace. Don’t miss any one of them–individually. In addition, these singers added music to the mirthful evening: Peter Marshall, Bill Carmichael and Frankie Avalon. Mike Franks put the show together, and wife Gloria and Barbara Cull’s committee created the event. Reiner, of course, was the masterful master of ceremonies. He’s getting ready to direct MGM’s “Triple Indemnity” this fall, and his (very sexy!) novel, “All Kinds of Love” (Birch Lane), will soon hit the stalls as well Among others lending fun to the event were: Harvey Korman, Arte Johnson, Phyllis Diller, the Bob Stacks, the Alan Rachins, Doug McClure, Judge Joe Wapner and Tim Matheson. Personal manager George Shapiro, one of the tennis winners, represents Jerry Seinfeld and George Wallace, who’ll team for the June 18 “Two Friends for L.A.” Wiltern theater fund-raiser to rebuild L.A. Seinfeld has been asked by NBC to start the season earlier, after the Olympics, Aug. 12 to enlarge his season to 26 segs.

ON THE LONGHORN from Prague, Ambassador Shirley Temple Black told me she’ll leave her post in mid-July to return here “to work for my president” on the George Bush campaign. She’s been our ambassador to Czechoslovakia for three years. “It’s like a Selznick movie,” she laughed that inimitable laugh–“we never knew how long it would be.” … Hillary and Bill Clinton checked into Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel last night–she loves the ocean, and he loves to jog on the beach. … Oscar show producer Gil Cates told me he thought the Tony show (produced by his older brother, Joe, and Walter C. Miller) was “terrific.” And Gil wants the Oscars to pick up a cue from its legit sister–to print names of the winners on the screen as they walk up to accept their awards. He also liked the idea of several awards being presented in advance of the actual telecast. But Gil Cates agreed whichever groups are relegated to that type of presentation “would probably lynch you.” Cates sounded to me like a man who would like to take on the Oscar chores again next year. Returning to his job as dean of UCLA’s School of Theater, Film and TV, he said Jack Valenti would give the commencement address June 13 at Royce Hall. … We are sorry to report that Frances (Mrs. Ray) Stark died Sunday following a lengthy illness. A private funeral was held yesterday, and a memorial for the very charitable Mrs. Stark (the daughter of Fannie Brice) will be held at a later date. … The eighth annual Irving Berlin Birthday Celebration was held again at the home of Ginny and Hank Mancini, benefiting the L.A. Symphonic Jazz Orchestra. The evening featured a special tribute to Sammy Cahn, with guests chorusing on many of his hits. In addition, the event featured: Michael Feinstein, Hal Linden, Ginny, Monica and Felice Mancini (performing as a trio), Tony Martin, Sally Kellerman (at the Rose Cabaret on Wednesdays), Joanie Sommers, Ray Charles (conductor-arranger), Stan Freeman and Daryce Richman. Tough to beat this musical treat.

AS OF LAST NIGHT’S medical bulletins, Glenn Ford was showing improvement at St. John’s hospital. And Cher was improving and expects to make her June 11 date at the Mirage. … Connie Stevens is OK after a bout with pneumonia, and she’ll headline, with John Byner and the Lettermen, a benefit, Saturday (6) at the Century Plaza Hotel for child victims of the war in Croatia. Atlantic Records’ Tony Mandich is producing. … An incensed Wally George phoned to say he intends to sue his daughter Rebecca de Mornay for the article in this week’s Enquirer–“I hate my bigamist dad.” … Diandra and Michael Douglas are in Baltimore, where Elizabeth Dole presents Diandra with the Philanthropist Award of the Year award by the American Red Cross. Diandra created kiosks at N.Y.’s airport where international travelers can deposit leftover U.S. coins before departing the States–the money given to the Red Cross for N.Y.’s homeless. … Essie (Mrs. Irv) Kupcinet was named woman of the year by the Chicago Academy of Art last night. Larry King emceed. … Steve Martin donated one of the most significant works of art, by Cy Twomby, at the MOCA auction. Agent Phil Gersh won the bid, as he did for another work. His sons, David and Bob, also won bids for two other pieces. Eli Broad, Jim Burrows, Dan Melnick and Ian Sander were among other buyers.

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