Santa and His Helpers Spreading Good Cheer

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Santa in Hollywood.

There were lots of big stars acting as Santa’s helpers for the 2010 Hollywood Christmas Parade benefiting the Marine’s Toys for Tots program. Of course Santa was there, along with Larry King reigning as the Grand Marshal. Mario Lopez helped out as the Parade Marshal, overseeing more than 100 celebrities, bands, equestrian units, floats, and much more.

Seen spreading good cheer along Hollywood Boulevard was Dancing with the Stars’ high-energy darling Kyle Massey, who acted as a roving reporter with his brother Chris Massey (Zoey 101) for the parade’s broadcast. Kyle and Chris were also part of special performances that were filmed during the Hollywood and Highland tree lighting ceremony. All the parade excitement and entertainment will air on the Hallmark Channel, Friday, December 10 and KTLA on December 17. It’s a must-see.

Talking with Kyle about his impressive dancing and second place finish on DWTS, he said, “Victory is more than just a trophy.” Wow, those are words to live by from an impressive young man. Now I hope brother Chris gets a turn at DWTS next season.

Santa’s PSJMC Guild Helpers

Another holiday event that was a delight was the Providence St. Joseph Medical Center Guild’s annual luncheon. Just like Santa’s helpers, the ladies of the guild bring so much joy to so many. So it was great to see the gals having a good time with their “Musical Thanksgiving” event at Lakeside Golf Club. There was sing-along entertainment by Jay C. Munns who went through a litany of nostalgic songs.

Kathleen Marsden is the president, but all the guild ladies are special, putting in thousands of volunteer hours, and raising money for the Howard and Hycy Hill Neuroscience Institute at PSJMC. My friend Terry Campbell told me they are always looking for new members, so if you want to help out, stop by their Gift Gallery at the hospital and talk to a Guild member. You’ll be in great company.

Santa’s Knitting Circle

Another place full of joy around the holidays is La Knitterie Parisienne in Studio City. The cozy shop has a bountiful selection of knitting yarns, plus lots of items that will get you “hooked” on the relaxing hobby of knitting. But I think most people go to La Knitterie because Edith Eig specializes in personalized knitting and crochet lessons — for free.

Called the “Mother of Purl” (after the title of her book), Eig gladly guides you through your projects, from sweaters and shawls, to hats and purses. Every Wednesday night is “Sip’n’Knit” night, as folks have a little wine, share stories, and knit their troubles away in the friendly atmosphere. Carolyn Hennesy, Daryl Hannah, Debra Messing and Chi McBride are among Eig’s famous seasoned knitters. Popular projects right now are the Harry Potter scarves moms are making for their kids.

“Knit a Lap Wrap,” is one of Eig’s annual projects. The shop’s regulars get involved and knit blankets for our wounded warriors. The Lap Wraps are sent with personal notes of appreciation and distributed by USA Cares.

“It helps make a difference in the lives of our servicemen and women who see that someone has taken the time to make something just for them,” Eig said. “It is a gift of love.”

Santa’s CNN Heroes

Last week the CNN Heroes: An All Star Tribute special aired hosted by Anderson Cooper, who put the spotlight on everyday people who are changing the world. Cooper said he was humbled by the individuals he met who make extraordinary contributions to help others. They are quiet heroes, like a guy who helps build homes for soldiers returning from the war, or a woman to helps feed the needy. In recognition of these awe-inspiring people, Gavin Keilly, founder of GBK Productions, produced the official backstage Thank You Gift Lounge for the heroes being honored and gave them the celebrity treatment. They got pampered with Catfootwear, Croton Watches, Astor & Black Custom Clothiers, Booda Brand, LovelinksAmerica, the Wine to Water a charity label that uses proceeds to fund clean water projects, and the Zamani Retreat Kempinski in Africa, and much more. Keilly also donated $25,000 to the heroes to help their organizations. Santa’s helpers are everywhere.

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