The annual Evening of Wine has been good to the Pacific Northwest Diabetes Research Institute (PNDRI).
In 10 years, the event has raised millions, and this year it featured its very own wine, Monster Red, a Bordeaux blend that was selling like crazy for $60 a bottle.
Had PNDRI founder William Hutchinson been alive, though, he may have sat the event out.
“He wasn’t much of a drinker,” his grandson, Brock Reed, told me. (For the record, neither is Reed; Perrier all the way.)
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Hutchinson was a surgeon who wanted to establish a research operation and invite others to work with him. Swedish Medical Center gave him an appointment, a room to do his research and a residential building on Columbia Street that was once owned by Capt. William Rankin Ballard.
The PNDRI was officially started there in 1956. Hutchinson later founded the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, named for his brother, who succumbed to cancer.
“We like to say we’re the original Hutch,” said CEO John Wecker, who has been on the job since April 2012.
He called the last year “phenomenal.” The institute is currently focused on developing tests that will better predict Type 1 diabetes in children.
“We’ve reached the stage where it’s a major disease in this country,” he said.
Wecker succeeded Jack Faris of The Fearey Group, who served for a time as the PNDRI’s CEO — when he wasn’t consulting for various global health agencies.
Even if you don’t travel in those circles, Faris’ name might sound familiar. His daughter is the actress Anna Faris, the former “House Bunny” who co-stars with Allison Janney this fall on the new sitcom “Mom.”
Anna and her husband, Chris Pratt, of “Parks and Recreation,” have a 1-year-old son, which is why Jack and Karen Faris were headed to Los Angeles the next morning.
What’s the baby’s name?
“I’m glad you asked,” Faris said. “Jack.”
At Table 29 (which tanked in the “Name That Wine Game,” but had a great time trying), Reed told me how his grandfather spent time with the late U.S. Sen. Warren Magnuson and the Kennedys, but was happiest in his garden.
“He would have dinner and then put on his grubbies and go out there,” Reed said.
Those tools must have felt good in his hands, because he kept a pair of gloves and some clippers under the seat of his car.
For what? Guerrilla gardening?
Nope, Reed said, “In case he got into a tussle going down Rainier Avenue.”
Burgers that sing
These are meaty days for Dick’s Drive-In.
Not only did the local burger chain celebrate its 60th anniversary the other day with a party that featured Sir Mix-A-Lot performing his “Baby Got Back” backed by a bevy of women, but the video for Macklemore and Ryan Lewis’ “White Walls” — filmed at Dick’s Capitol Hill location some weeks ago — was just released.
“Who knew we were going to be part of the music industry?” said Fawn Spady, the daughter-in-law of founder Dick Spady— and mother of Saul Spady, who pulled the party together.
“We thought we were just going to be burger makers.”
Fawn Spady knew the video was being filmed in several places, “So who knew if we would be on the cutting-room floor?”
Oh, come now. When the video hit Monday morning, there were several shots of Dick’s with a crowd out front and Macklemore, Ryan Lewis and Hollis Wong-Wear on the roof.
Spady is a new fan of Funky2Death, Recess Monkey and Ayron Jones, who all played at Sunday’s anniversary event — and of “everybody on Broadway” who showed up to celebrate.
“You have all the talk about Broadway as hard to go to,” she said, “but what wonderful people are living there. Old and young, hipsters and families, gay and straight, funky and normal.
“As a mom, it was great to see everyone so well-behaved. No incidents or drama, just people having a wonderful time on a beautiful day, eating lots of burgers and fries.”
And shakes. Don’t forget the shakes.
One steps off TV, and another steps on in a big way.
Margaret Larson, of KING 5’s “New Day Northwest,” is taking some time off for a 10-day trip to Rwanda, where she will cover the 20th anniversary of the genocide there in a partnership with the local charity World Vision.
Larson plans to interview both survivors and perpetrators of the genocide, and see how they’re dealing with reconciliation.
“I can’t wait to find out what these people are going to teach us,” she said.
So is former KING 5 star Bill Nye the Science Guy, who was cast on the new season of “Dancing with the Stars,” which premieres Monday.
“He’s very excited,” said Nye’s assistant, Christine Sposari.
Nye had broken in his dancing shoes by the time the cast was announced: He knew he had been chosen three weeks before.
Sposari couldn’t (or wouldn’t) tell me what kind of dance Nye is working on for the premiere, but did say that he’s “very fit, very healthy, very athletic and a pretty good dancer.”
America will be the judge of that.
Nicole Brodeur’s column appears Tuesday and Sunday. Reach her at 206-464-2334 or firstname.lastname@example.org.