Legion of LoHud celebs donates artistic skills to benefit Brewster charity

The Columbus Day Parade has gone to the dogs!

Well, art shaped like dogs. Whatever. It’s a good cause. Stay with me here.

This Monday, the artwork of celebrities – many with a connection to the Lower Hudson Valley – will be paraded down the streets of New York City as part of an initiative to raise money for a Brewster charity.

gere.jpgAbout 30 celebs painted life-sized fiberglass dogs that will be aboard a float in the city’s Columbus Day Parade. Among the artistic celebs with a local connection are Pound Ridge residents Richard Gere (pictured) and Clive Davis; Bedford residents Chevy Chase, Glenn Close, Robert Kennedy Jr., Paul Shaffer and Martha Stewart; Chappaqua resident Vanessa Williams; North Salem resident and John Jay High School alumnus Stanley Tucci; and former Putnam County resident Judge Judy Sheindlin.

The money raised through a subsequent auction will benefit Green Chimneys, a 60-year-old non-profit organization that operates a special education school, a residential treatment center for children and a farm and wildlife rehabilitation center in Brewster. The auction ends Nov. 1.

For the rest of October, the dogs will be on display at the TimeWarner Center in Columbus Circle.

Among the other celebrities to apply their palates to fake pups were Fiona Apple, Rachael Ray, Robin Quivers, Dan Aykroyd, Jane Goodall, Cyndi Lauper, Soledad O’Brien, Joe Piscopo, Mike Richter and Bill Walton.

Check out and bid on all the dogs at www.CharityFolks.com and learn more about Green Chimneys at www.GreenChimneys.org.

(AP Photo/Evan Agostini)

Chevy Chase backs buddy Bill Clinton at DNC

While watching the Democratic National Convention last night — because, let’s face it, the Yankees are done — I spotted Bedford resident Chevy Chase in the stands. As seen in this photo, he was there cheering on Chappaqua resident Bill Clinton and waving the American flag during his speech.

chevy-flag.jpgUnlike most fairweather celebs who every few years show fleeting support to politicians (usually Democrats, for better and worse), Chase and Clinton are legit buddies.

When Chase was holding an auction in September for his charity, the Center for Environmental Education Online, Clinton agreed to lend his name and time to the cause. At one point in the auction, a bid for lunch with Chase and Clinton reached $51,500. Y’know, tip money.

(AP Photo/The Rocky Mountain News, Rodolfo Gonzalez)

Faux-lympians Al Roker, Matt Lauer weave dreams with rhythmic gymnastic exhibition

“Today” hosts Al Roker, formerly of Yorktown, and Matt Lauer, formerly of Chappaqua, Ardsley and Hartsdale, did the Lower Hudson Valley and America proud this morning with the following triumphant athletic exhibition:

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(Courtesy of MSNBC.com; via BestWeekEver.tv.)

‘Razzi Rundown: Where alliteration lives, puns are fun and timeliness is optional

Disclaimer: I’m an avid reader of BestWeekEver.tv, one of my favorite non-LoHud blogs out there these days. So if this quick-hitter format and source material looks familiar, it is, and I’m coming clean with that up-front. Plagiarism kills, kids!

jayz.jpgRINGDOM COME: New Scarsdale resident Jay-Z is finally wearing a wedding ring these days. You might have “the hottest chick in the game wearin’ (your) chain,” Shawn, but Beyoncé seems pretty intent on your wearing jewels of Hova matrimony. (Source: MollyGood via BestWeekEver.tv)

MUNCH SINGS!: My friend and comedienne extraordinaire Abbi Crutchfield caught comedian Richard Belzer’s recent act at Comix, where he was lauded by Robert Klein of Briarcliff Manor from the crowd and backed by Bedford’s Paul Shaffer and the Belzonics on stage. No word on if Ice-T offered similar musical collaboration, which surely would have been accompanied by the echoey “Law & Order” gavel. (Source: The Apiary)

PANETTIERE IS FRENCH FOR ‘PARKING ANYWHERE’: “Heroes” star and Palisades native Hayden Penettiere appears to have been busted for a parking violation. It’s unknown if similar fines are pending for a subpar second season. (Source: I’m Not Obsessed via BestWeekEver.tv)

BA-ED NEWS, GOO-ED NEWS: Ed McMahon, whose family once lived in Bronxville, is being sued for money he allegedly owes his daughter’s divorce attorney. At least his new gig helping out Jimmy Kimmel will help Ed pay off his McMahon-sion. Hiyo! (Source: E!)

VIEIRON MAIDEN: With Irvington resident Meredith Vieira on lead vocals, former Yorktown resident Al Roker on drums and former Chappaqua-Ardsley-Hartsdale resident Matt Lauer on “guitar,” the Today Show’s attempt to play Rock Band is almost as bizarre as the Willard Scott ditty that follows it. (Source: BestWeekEver.tv.)

(AP Photo/Darryl Dyck,THE CANADIAN PRESS)

Podcast: July 2

On this week’s show: Richard Gere’s Fiat fracas, Ace Frehley’s surprise Pearl Jam show, and Bryce Dallas Howard in “Terminator 4.”

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This week’s quiz revolves around actor William Hurt, who lives in Sneden’s Landing.

Can you guess which TV show he’s just recently accepted a leading role on for next season?

A. 24
B. Damages
C. CSI: Boston
D. Heroes

Answer, as always, is at the end of the clip or after the break.

Continue reading

Ace Frehley rocks out with Pearl Jam

If you’re fortunate enough to have tickets to the Pearl Jam concert tonight, a benefit for the Robin Hood Foundation, you may just luck out like the folks who got to see the band on June 25 as Madison Square Garden. They were treated to guest appearances by Kiss guitarist and Chappaqua resident Ace Frehley, as well as C.J. Ramone of the Ramones. Frehely performed the Kiss favorite “Black Diamond” with the band. According to Billboard, a few of those who made the show last Wednesday were Olsen Twins, Coldplay frontman Chris Martin, and Pound Ridgers Tim Robbins and Susan Sarandon.

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Judging by the hefty prices for tonight’s show at the Beacon Theatre — from $518 to $3,450 on TicketCity — who knows, maybe you’ll get the full Kiss quartest and a half-dozen other Ramone relatives.

(Eddie Vedder photo:  AP Photo/Mark Humphrey)

Podcast: June 19

This week: Ron Howard’s vexing problems with the Vatican, Justine Bateman’s SAG sympathies, and Vanessa Williams return to Chappaqua.

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And the quiz — which, I might add, stumped Stacy-Ann (third week in a row!) — is as follows:

Which actor from the Lower Hudson Valley appears in M. Night Shyamalan’s new thriller “The Happening”?

A. Joseph Cross, of Pelham
B. Bill Irwin, of Nyack
C. Alan Ruck, of Piermont
D. Mel Gibson, of Peekskill/Verplanck

The big trick here: ALL of these actors have, at one point or another, appeared in a Shyamalan film.

The answer, as always, is at the end of the video or after the break.

Continue reading

Vanessa Williams boomerangs back to Chappaqua

You gotta feel for Vanessa Williams. And I’m not referring to the diss she got from the other Vanessa Williams (the one from “Melrose Place”) in Essence Magazine. Nor am I talking about the indignity of hosting Sunday’s 2008 TV Land Awards (dedicated to honoring such 1980s fare as “Roseanne” and “The Golden Girls”) or flying in on a wire singing songs from Peter Pan. (That, I’m pretty sure, she like doing.) No, my sympathy stems from the decision to move production of “Ugly Betty” from California to New York.

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Now wait, you might think, isn’t that a good thing for her? Given that her family is based out of Chappaqua, isn’t that just about the best thing that could have happened for her?

Well, turns out that Vanessa was already well on her way to moving the whole Williams gang out west. As she told our sister publication, USA Today:

“We finally took a breath this year and got settled into a house that I love here in L.A. Sasha’s doing really well in school. And now all of a sudden we’re moving to New York.”

Williams received a call from show creator Silvio Horta informing her of the move just three days before wrapping Betty’s season finale.

“I was in shock,” says Williams, who immediately began text-messaging co-star America Ferrera (Betty). “I was like, ‘What???!’

“I think everyone assumed I’d be jumping for joy to be back home in New York, but the first thing I thought about was Sasha, who’d just had her First Communion in our new church. I was numb, and then anxiety kicked in: ‘I have to get rid of the house, ship all my cars back to New York and move 10 rooms of furniture.’ “

Perhaps the biggest problem of all: Since moving to the West Coast, daughter Sasha had been able to bond with her dad, Rick Fox of the L.A. Lakers. “Rick was active in her school and with her homework and got to be with her on a weekly level,” Williams told USA Today. “That’s going to be a huge adjustment, which we’re just going to have to make.”

While the homecoming may be bittersweet for Vanessa, we couldn’t be happier. And hey, as we related before, there’s always more than enough room in her Chappaqua house for Fox — and any other ex-husbands that are in town — to spend the night.

“Vanessa Williams moves home” [USA Today, via LoHud]

(Vanessa Williams at the TV Land Awards: AP Photo/Matt Sayles)

Vanessa Williams graduates from Syracuse’s new 25-year degree program

Chappaqua resident Vanessa Williams headed back to Syracuse over the weekend to deliver the convocation address … and pick up her diplomma 25 years after dropping out of the university. Wearing a blue cap and gown with orange trim, Williams told a local reporter, “It’s been 25 years since I was a student here. It just brought home what my message was, which is cherish the moment.”
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Her kids and family were also in the audience. According to Capital News 9, mom Helen had this to say: “It is fantastic. Its fulfillment, full circle and I’m very very excited and I know her dad is here in spirit.” As reported before, Syracuse awarded her the degree based on industry experience and performances on stage and screen.

(Photo: ABC/MITCH HADDAD)

Vanessa Williams to finally graduate college, earn an honest living

Yet another of our beloved LoHud celebs is pulling a Rodney Dangerfield. Remember how last summer Sneden’s Landing’s Bill Murray finally got his degree from Regis University, oh, about 30 years after he dropped out? Well, now Chappaqua’s Vanessa Williams has followed suit, returning to Syracuse this weekend nearly 25 years after she left the university to pursue singing, beauty pagenting, and looking dead sexy.

According to the AP story, Williams, who grew up in Millwood, was a musical theater major from 1981 to 1983 at ‘Cuse and  “earned the remaining credits for her degree through industry experience and her substantial performances on stage and screen.” She’ll also be delivering the school’s convocation speech.

We can only hope that she has as much fashion sense at the graduation ceremony as Murray did.

(Williams: AP Photo/Jim Cooper; Murray Photo: Regis University)

Vanessa Williams launches campaign for ‘Mother of the Year’

What does it take to be earn the label of “World’s Coolest Mom” these days? A hit primetime comedy? The noteriety of being one of the only Miss Americas stripped of her crown? tjndc5-5j1ehc7stomsiwlao5g_layout.jpgWell, those help. But having an in with Miley Cyrus trumps all.

That’s what Vanessa Williams is hoping. During Lincoln Center’s Annual Spring Gala Wednesday night, the Chappaqua actress told People Mag that she’s going to play Hannah Montana’s publicist in a version of the Disney Channel show. “My 7-year-old, [Sasha Gabrielle], is into [Miley’s] music,” she added. Even though the deal hasn’t been officially signed off on, Williams said her daughter has already given it her blessing. “[She] thought it was the coolest thing in the world, and that I’m an awesome mom!”

(AP Photo/Chris Pizzello)

Rumors we didn’t start: Vanessa Williams dating Tyler Perry

Don’t ask why we’re reading MediaTakeOut.com, but they have a story that Vanessa Williams is in the running to land “the most eligible bachelor in Black Hollywood.”

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For those of you who aren’t up on your Black Hollywood bachelors, that would be actor/director/producer Tyler Perry. Their post says that “the two are spending the weekend together in Tyler’s Los Angeles mansion – waiting for the results of the new film Meet The Browns.” Which is a little odd, considering that Williams’s primary residence is still Chappaqua.

Of course, this website is the exact same one that posted a rumor about Williams dating Vince Vaughn, so take it with a huge, huge, Madea-sized grain of salt.