After watching WJZ-TV's Denise Koch emcee the second annual Celebrity Servers Luncheon to benefit the Leukemia Society at the Towson Sheraton last week, I would say that she deserves hazardous duty pay for her appearance.
Lunch got off to a noisy start as guests were invited to sit on their balloons, then the money challenges began. Imagine the horror of watching Ken Mills, director of the Baltimore County Revenue Authority, drink a live goldfish, which he did to earn $100 for the charity.
Another interesting challenge was when Denise had to kiss the baby pig that was to be auctioned. After kissing the poor little thing, she ended up buying the pig with WCBM-AM's Tom Marr, rather than let anyone else have roast piglet. (This little piggy cost them $370!)
Lloyd Reynolds, who has a farm in Reisterstown, had donated the pig, which he will let live forever on his farm. Since it's a girl pig, "Little Denise" will get periodic visits from her foster parents, Koch and Marr.
Pat Dodd, executive director of the Leukemia Society, welcomed everyone as did Baltimore County Executive Roger Hayden, who served as Honorary Maitre d'. Celebrity servers who waited on the "big spenders" at their tables were Dick Rudolph, Towson Bootery; John Howard, Venable, Baetjer & Howard; Gary Seibert, BG&E; Elwood Bannister, Baltimore County Fire Department; LeRoy Haile Jr., Le Roy Haile Inc.; and Merreen Kelly, Baltimore County.
Others enjoying the show were Carol Hirschburg, Eric Dott, Jeanette Katz, John Bailey, Elrod Hendricks, Andrea Just, Ted Herget, Tim Mullen and Joe DiCara, who works for Baltimore County Economic Development and is a talented opera singer to boot. He's the guy who wrote the Desert Storm song that was played by local stations last year.
How would you like to join the Turkish ambassador to the United States, His Excellency the Ambassador and Mrs. Nuzhet Kandemir and the Deputy Minister Mr. and Mrs. Aydin Sahinbas for dinner on Sunday evening?
Willard and Lillian Hackerman, owner of the Sheraton Inner Harbor, have invited the ambassador to join them for dinner in the Kosher Dining Club, where they'll be served kosher Turkish food. Every couple of months, the Sheraton features a different ethic cuisine and, of course, ethnic entertainment to go along with your meal.
If you'd like to attend, call Henry Zetlin, (410) 962-8300, for dinner reservations which are $25 a person.
A famous Russian comedian of television and stage, Yakov Smirnoff, will be the guest star at the annual concert by the Baltimore Committee for the Shaare Zedek Medical Center in Jerusalem. Smirnoff had parts in "Brewster's Millions," "The Money Pit" and "Heartburn," and he also starred in a 1986 syndicated series, "What a Country."
Michael and Jessica Bronfein are chairing this year's concert scheduled for the Feb. 9 event at Beth Tfiloh Congregation and which will also honor Philip and Harriet Klein and Howard and Rina Janet. If you'd like to attend, call (410)
486-9303 for ticket information.
I love the creative press release sent by the Walters Art Gallery about its Valentine's Day "do" -- "Dessert and Dancing in the Renaissance Sculpture Court, where fleet feet meet sweet treats."
From 8 p.m. to midnight, Fred and Ginger-wannabes can receive first foot instructions from master of dance Ted Hines and his partner, Donna Ellis, accompanied by the Shade of Blue Orchestra.
Reservations for "Dessert and Dancing" are $45 a person, and remember there will be plenty to eat for those who prefer chocolate to cha-cha. Call (410) 547-9000, Ext. 313, for tickets. FYI: The Pavilion at the Walters will be open for dinner on Valentine's Day at 6 p.m., but reservations are required.
Lloyd Marcus, graphic artist at WJZ-TV, joined with Joe Ercole, to write a special song to hype "The Event," a fund-raiser that takes place at the Baltimore Grand on March 5 to benefit the hungry, cold and homeless of Maryland.
Marcus asked a talented group of Baltimore singers to join him at High Heel Studios this past week to tape the song, which will be seen and heard on Baltimore airways soon. The voices you'll hear singing "Make Somebody's Day" belong to 10-year-old Molly Ercole, Brenda Alford, Vicki Childs, Dwight Weems, Roderick Dotson, Sue Ellen Sacco, Vonda Perry and Roy and Cyndi Wallman.
The Event is an after-work, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. party, which offers the music of Gazze in one room and the music of Brenda Alford in the jazzy speakeasy. Food, beer, wine, tarot readings, jugglers, magicians and auctions are yours to enjoy for only $25. Call (410) 752-1325.