NEW GROUND — The social-political world shakes a little next month, when Washington political powerhouse Pamela Harriman brings her fund-raising efforts west.
Here next week, she'll be ironing out details for the June 22 Century Park Tower $1,000-a-head dinner--the first big Los Angeles effort by the wife of Averell Harriman. It will feature Sens. Jay Rockefeller of West Virginia and Albert Gore Jr. of Tennessee and benefits Senate Majority 86, a project of her political-action committee, Democrats for the Eighties. The PAC gives more money directly to candidates than any other independent PAC in the country--$900,000 last year--and has Mayor Tom Bradley and former DNC chairman Charles Manatt on its board. A caution--if you try to call the PAC's number, listed in the Washington phone book as (202) 965-1984, a recording announces that calls are being taken by 965-1985. Ah, always au courant.
NO SURPRISE--It could be the town's best party. Big-ticket tables laden with the biggest names in show biz. On stage, the SHARE ladies, whose work earns $1 million for their charities. Twentieth Century Fox's Marvin and Barbara Davis, Ruth and Milton Berle, Dolores Hope (Bob was backstage) and TV Guide's Wallis Annenberg with screenwriter Gerry Ayres were among the 500 who paid $400 each to dine on barbecue, then watch Hope, a much-thinner Nell Carter, Steve-n-Eydie (as they are called in these parts), Lionel Richie, hot new comedian Steven Wright, Kenny Rogers and Dottie West make the Santa Monica Civic Auditorium into Vegas West. Not fancy, just cowboy clothes--although an Austin import, Posy Lindauer, was in "authentic Texan," with a mink vest atop jeans and boots. And enough big diamonds shone on tiny little hands holding barbecued ribs to make a Gabor jealous.
Helping to make up the $1 million was a $100-a-ticket raffle (three prizes were cars). The Davises had contributed heavily and even bought raffle tickets. For all the money he's contributed over the years, he's only won a single prize, Davis related. In a raffle in Denver, he won a motorcycle--which he turned back and let them re-raffle. The highlight of the evening--perhaps a chorus line of SHARE hubbies, singing "We Ain't Getting Our Share." And who was the 10-gallon guy on the far left--Ken Murray, whose wife Bette Lou Murray was hoofing and singing along with Joanna Carson, Sandy Moss, Edye Rugolo, Neile McQueen Toffel, Marianne Rogers, Altovise Davis, Lorna Luft (whose pictures don't do her justice), Judy Feder, Shera Danese (formerly Falk) and Pam Korman.
IT'S ALL RELATIVE--Barbara Davis, of course, puts on the annual Denver extravaganza charity, the Carousel Ball, benefiting Juvenile Diabetes, and set this year for Oct. 12. Last year she raised about $2.7 million. This year? "We'll probably raise $2.7 million." The tiny blonde explained: "It's just about impossible to raise more than $2.7 million in one night." Don't we know it.
KUDOS--Danny Kaye went to the University of South Carolina to pick up his Doctor of Humane Letters and make a commencement address. "I'm delighted to receive this degree . . . when I send a thank-you letter, we'll see how humane this university is because I will ask for a contribution to UNICEF." In the audience was retired Gen. William C. Westmoreland, whose son was graduating from the law school. The general reminisced about the troop visits Kaye had made to Vietnam.
TOP-FLIGHT FORMERS--Former U.S. Ambassador and current prospective candidate Jeane J. Kirkpatrick will be here this week, giving the commencement address at Whittier College. A former ambassador--Iranian Ardeshir Zahedi--was hosted for dinner at Jimmy's by former Atty. Gen. William French Smith. Making up the heavy-hitter table were Jean Smith, Lew and Edie Wasserman, Kirk and Anne Douglas and Eva Gabor.
DINING OUT--Ethel Kennedy lunched this week at the Bistro Garden and then dined at Morton's, hosted by Don Klosterman and wife, along with Jane Fonda, her assemblyman spouse Tom Hayden and several Kennedy children. The widow of Sen. Robert F. Kennedy, she was in town to dedicate the former Hawthorne Community Center as R.F.K. Medical Center. She got a big lunchtime greeting at the Bistro Garden from the Senior Former Gov. Edmund G. Brown, lunching there with pal Pete Summers. Leaving, Brown quipped: "Wanna see a good-looking guy?" and then pulled out a 3x5 of his son, the Junior Former Gov. Brown, apparently giving a speech. Walking through his garden, greeting and kissing, the Bistro's Kurt Niklas paused to wipe a large lipstick smear from his cheek. "Occupational hazard," explained the restaurateur.