By Lola Rossi-Meza

This Saturday, September 21, from 7 until 10 p.m., the very popular “It’s Better With A Band” featuring the Derrik Lewis Quartet, kicks off the new season series at Azul Restaurant & Tapas Lounge located at 369 North Palm Canyon Drive in Palm Springs. Hosted by Sharon Dihaworth, vocalists include: Linda Girard, Brian Damson, Melba Miller, Doug Graham, Beverly Jensen; Patrick Reese, Jaci Davis, Huguette, Thom McMorris, Pat McCann, Jean Sorf, Vince Urbani and Keisha D.

“Baby Boomer” Comedian Diane Nichols, a friend of Lewis’, is scheduled to make a guest appearance during the show. She has had a long career in stand up, appearing on the “Tonight Show” with Johnny Carson and Jay Leno; “Late Show” with David Letterman; the Merv Griffin Show; “An Evening At The Improv”; “Comedy On The Road”; “Girls Night Out” and “Make Me Laugh” along with winning our local “Desert Stars Award” in 2008. $10 cover charge. Reservations: (760) 325-5533 or visit

Coming up on Saturday, November 23 and Sunday, November 24 from 10 a.m. until 4 pm., is the Fifth Annual Loving All Animals Super Pet Adoption Fair. The event will be held at the Whitewater Park in Rancho Mirage. Their mission is to bring local and national animal welfare organizations to work together for the benefit of animals. They have been very successful finding abandoned, neglected and unwanted animals new loving homes. Last year they added entertainment that included several different bands and dancers. This year, Lola Rossi of Prestige Entertainment Services, has put together a very exciting line up for the Main Stage.

Headlining on Saturday and Sunday will be impressionist, comedian, actor and musician, Rex Meredith, who made his home and raised his family here in the Desert. He has performed all over the world and is making a special appearance to help this organization find good homes for the animals during the event. Meredith has performed on the “Tonight Show” with Johnny Carson; “An Evening At The Improv”; The Merv Griffin Show; and at “The Comedy Store”; to name a few, and hosted his own show, “The Laff Shop with Rex Meredith.” He has been featured on “Entertainment Tonight”; CNN and “Eye on the Desert.” Meredith is also a very talented musician and songwriter in addition to being a very funny guy.


Also headlining the event is jazz vocalist and recording artist Peter Marin who will perform on Saturday and entertainer Fleet Easton, who will perform on Sunday. Additional entertainment includes: Valerie Mahabir and the Desert Youth Ballet; smooth jazz guitarist Joe Baldino; pianist and vocalist Denise Motto who will perform acoustic jazz with bassist Steve Crowell; guest appearance by saxophonist Chase Huna; Rio Colors Dance Show; Elenna and Donnie Beck; John Stanley King; the Heatwave Faculty Band; and the Heatwave Jazz and Show Band. The event will open with the Color Guard on Saturday followed by Lola Rossi singing “The National Anthem” on both days at 10 a.m. On Sunday, Rossi will sing an inspirational song, “We Lift You Up” followed by a special “Blessing of the Animals” by Father Howard Lincoln of Sacred Heart Church in La Quinta.

There will be lots of activities going on throughout the day. This year there will be a $5 per person or $20 per family donation required at the gate. This will give you a raffle ticket for a chance to win a wonderful “Behind the Scenes Tour” at the Living Desert. Additional raffle tickets may be purchased for $5, winner need not be present to win. Please mark your calendars now and plan to attend this very special event for the entire family.