The International Ballroom of the BevHilton was again packed with tables extending almost to the entrance. Saturday night was the 30th anniversary of the Carousel of Hope and $3.5 million was raised over the already totaled $75 million in the fight to find a cure for juvenile diabetes at the Barbara Davis Center for Childhood Diabetes. Davis, who has tirelessly continued the fight beyond the death of husband Marvin, sadly announced that one in every three children born will someday experience diabetes. She emphasized the importance of stem cell research to find cures for other illnesses as well.
Denzel Washington and wife Pauletta received the sculpture of the Brass Ring Of Hope (designed by Robert Graham) from Clive Davis and Quincy Jones, and Pauletta also finale’d the program with a song. The evening, as always began with the silent auction with rooms filling the adjoining banquet rooms on the main floor of the Hilton after which the throng marched into the main ballroom to dine and be entertained. As always, Sidney Poitier graciously and importantly opened the evening with a tribute to Davis. The show which followed included the returning m/c/ Jay Leno (who lost no opportunity to remind us (impartially)of the Presidential candidates, The performers included Katharine McPhee, Kenny “Babyface” Edmonds, the Jonas Brothers, Josh Brogan, and Charice Pempengco. David Foster was musical director, George Schlatter, producer and Buz Kohan writer. In the “live” auction, Kelsey Grammer bought the Mercedes-Benz for $150,000. (M-B was a major sponsor of the evening along with Guess, American Airlines, Johnson and Johnson Diabetes Institute, and the BevHilton. Many of the celeb guests had been attending the Carousel of Hope eve since they started in Denver, Alan Thicke at our table recalled how, in those early days guests were transported from their hotel to the dinner in horse-drawn carriages. And talking transportation, Bo Derek, at the Saturday night event, had earlier been at Santa Anita Park for the feature race, the Breeders’ Cup. And the race, Saturday night was to win the battle against juvenile diabetes.