Saturday evening I attended the 14th annual Steve Chase Humanitarian Awards in Palm Springs. In addition to being an awards gala, the event is also a fundraiser for the Desert Aids Project. The Desert Aids Project provides medical care and comprehensive support services to people living with HIV/AIDS in the desert community. They provide free, anonymous HIV testing and counseling, home health services, legal assistance and assistance with housing, medications, food, and re-employment. They also promote prevention and education outreach efforts. If you want to make a donation, click here. The Awards Gala was totally underwritten by donors, so any proceeds from tickets or the auction went to help people in need.
A Brazilian Theme, of sorts
"Flying Down to Rio!" was the theme of this year's gala, which featured some fantastic entertainment. The evening started out with a cocktail reception and silent auction, which is always a lot of fun.
above: In the ballroom, a live band played latin sounds with a retro '50's feel.
above: Broadway singer/performer Sam Harris performed a montage of songs with a Brazilian/Samba flair.
The evening saw celebrities such as Actresses Betty White, Judith Light, America Fererra, and International singer/performer Charo and Broadway singers Patricia Morrison and Sam Harris.
above left: America Fererra (TV's "Ugly Betty") and above right: Betty White speaks to the audience. Betty White was hilarious.
above left: Sam Harris sang "Bridge Over Troubled Water" and really belted it out. Above right: Actress Judith Light and America Fererra pose for photographers after Judith accepts her Humanitarian Award.
above: The headline entertainment was Charo, who was incredible. She was so vivacious and fun; her lively singing brought the place to life.
above: Charo brought a company of Samba dancers with colorful costumes.
above: Charo was really really funny. She told one joke about this tight fitting costume she was wearing and how she could barely breath. She quipped: "I came to America to make money to eat. now that I make money I cannot eat" (reference to having to diet constantly to fit into her costumes). She fires-off jokes and one-liners so fast that I was barely able to stop laughing.