5th Annual Evening with the Stars Gala a Huge Success

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Stars Shining in Universal City for the Desi Gestman Foundation.


General Hospital Cast AttendeesOn October 11, 2008 not only were the “STARS” shining in Universal City, but so were the faces of 10 brave children who battle cancer each day.  As the guest of honors at the 5th Annual Evening with the Stars Celebrity Gala, each of the ten children received their very own “Shining Star Award” and were recognized for their courage. 

More than 40 of the biggest names in daytime soap operas gathered at the Sheraton Universal Hotel to support the Desi Geestman Foundation.  The 5th Annual “Evening with the Stars” Celebrity Gala was a phenomenal success.   This years’ event raised tens of thousands of dollars to help Pediatric Cancer Patients and included celebrity attendees such as Michael Gross, Ted King, Cynthia Preston, Kate Linder, Ron Moss, Winsor Harmon, Nadia Bjorlin, Tyler Christopher and many more.

This was the first year the gala was held at the Sheraton Universal City.  In the past, Hollywood was host to the stars, fans, sponsors and benefactors, but the organizers wanted to do something a little different this year, so the venue changed.

The evening began with a VIP reception to honor sponsors and special guests, followed by a star-studded evening filled with dancing, silent auctions and music played by Ignacio Serricchio.  “In addition to meeting and mingling with some of our favorite actors, we raised money for families who so desperately need and deserve it”, said Ileana Geestman, DGF program director.  “The guests and celebrities all came together with one common bond, the children”.

The Desi Geestman Foundation sincerely thanks all of the sponsors, family and friends for the support and donations to help make this event possible.  "This event was not only about the money raised for these courageous children, but it brought priceless smiles and memories to each little guest of honor," said the spokesperson for the event.  "This support truly makes a difference and carries on the wish of one little girl with amazing spirit, Desi Geestman."

The Desi Geestman Foundation (DGF) is a 501c3 non-profit organization.  The DGF is the wish of a young girl, Desiree (Desi).  At age 12, Desi succumbed to a form of pediatric cancer, but her spirit lives on as the foundation “touches the lives of children with cancer.”  After the founding of the DGF in 1999, the cast and crew from daytime television shows quickly enlisted to help raise funds and awareness of pediatric cancer and the impact the disease has on the entire family.  The DGF is based in Los Angeles and works to provide both financial and emotional support to children and their families while struggling with the illness.


All Photos (c) JPI 


Brandon Beemer, Nadia Bjorlin  



Carolyn Hennesy (Diane, General Hospital)



Brandon Barrish (Johnny, General Hospital)



Darin Brooks (Max, Days of our Lives)



Days cast



Days Cast 2



Ignacio Serrachio, Alicia Leigh Willis (General Hospital)



Kate Linder (Esther, Young and the Restless)



Molly Burnett (Melanie, Days of our Lives)



Bold and the Beautiful cast


All Photos (c) JPI