Environmental fund-raiser scores former ‘SNL’ comic

25 11 2008

This Thanksgiving week, Captain Planet Foundation chairwoman Laura Turner Seydel is thankful for the Coca-Cola Co., Georgia Power Co., the Mother Nature Network, Pratt Industries and timing.

The above companies signed up early as presenting sponsors for this year’s 14th annual Xmas Party, the annual benefit for the Captain Planet Foundation set for Dec. 12 at the Tabernacle in downtown Atlanta.

“With the economy the way it is, we’re extremely lucky that we had our presenting sponsors come on board early,” Turner Seydel told Buzz on Monday.

Still, the environmental charity has done some budgetary trimming for this year’s event, eliminating the white tent in the parking lot and consolidating the festivities inside.

Musical guests include Rolling Stones keyboardist and Georgia tree farmer Chuck Leavell, Night Ranger singer Jack Blade, .38 Special’s Jeff Carlisi and the Romantics’ Wally Palmar.

The evening’s special celebrity guest is “Saturday Night Live” legend Chevy Chase and his environmentalist wife, Jayni. So how did Turner Seydel lure the comic actor to Atlanta?

Call it return payment for a pair of borrowed golf shorts.

It seems that some years back, Turner Seydel’s husband, Atlanta lawyer Rutherford Seydel, was playing golf with the comic and Chase arrived sans shorts. He borrowed a pair of Rutherford’s and decided he liked them.

“It’s been a running joke between us for a while,” explained Turner Seydel. “We’re thrilled to have Chevy and Jayni this year.” Jayni, incidentally, is the founder of the Center for Environmental Education, a nonprofit devoted to the greening of public schools. Best-selling author (and the chairwoman’s father) Ted Turner has also R.S.V.P.-ed.

As usual, Turner Seydel’s dress for the occasion is an eco-friendly frock, this year made out of sustainable silk, courtesy of a “free-range silk worm that was allowed to turn into a moth.”

So, no silk worms were harmed in the making of the dress, we inquired?

Cracked Turner: “Um, you could say that!”

For tickets: www.xmasparty.org.

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