Friday, Aug. 20, 2004 | 8:52 a.m.
What: Fund-raising benefit for Christine Anderson and for The Shade Tree Shelter for Women and Children.
When: 2 p.m. Sunday.
Where: Boulder Station's Railhead.
Information: 300-3684, or vegascares.com.
Christine Anderson, a 32-year-old single mother of children ages 14 months to 11 years, is suffering from cancer.
Some of the elite of Las Vegas' entertainment world have signed on to participate in a benefit at 2 p.m. Sunday for Anderson and for the Shade Tree Shelter for Women and Children. The show will be held at Boulder Station.
Initially, the event was going to be only to help Anderson, but she declined to be the sole beneficiary.
"Christine insisted that 50 percent of the funds be donated to the Shade Tree," Bronson said. "We're hoping she can make it to the show Sunday, but she's in a day-to-day situation."
Among the entertainers who will perform are Clint Holmes, Lance Burton, Rita Rudner, Bill Acosta, Gordie Brown, Cook E. Jarr, The Divas of Comedy, Dennis Blair, past and present members of "The Rat Pack Is Back," Pam Matteson, Kelly Clinton and Starks.
The Lon Bronson All-Star Band (which can be heard at the Golden Nugget's Theatre Ballroom at 10 p.m. on Mondays and midnight Saturdays) will provide backup music for the performers.
Anderson played the role of Candy in "The Rat Pack Is Back," which was created by David Cassidy in 2000. Because of her illness she is unable to work and is without medical insurance.
Starks plays the role of Sammy Davis Jr. in the production, a tribute show that started at the Desert Inn and then moved to the Sahara before the musical went on the road, where it remains.
Bronson was the show's musical director.
"The thought was, when we created Vegas Cares, is that we are blessed being performers benefitting from being in Las Vegas," Starks said.
The organization has only three members, Starks, Bronson and Hyams, who meet informally over dinner to decide where to direct their charitable efforts.
Their first benefit was in March, for Samaritan House. The fund-raiser for Anderson and Shade Tree is its second project.
"Vegas Cares isn't in the business of doing charities," Bronson said. "We will pick and choose benefits we think are valuable. Christine has befriended a lot of Vegas entertainers. We can't think of a better cause."
Contributions may be made to Vegas Cares (Benefit Fund), Nevada First Bank, 2800 W. Sahara Ave., Suite 1-A, Las Vegas, 89102.