The Ed Asner & Friends Celebrity Poker Night Hits the CBS Backlot “Streets of New York” to Raise Money for the Ed Asner Family Center

Ed Asner & Friends Celebrity Poker Tournament held at CBS's Radford Studio in Los Angeles, California (Photo Credit: Sarah Meyer)
Spread the love

Ed Asner is a name recognized by most people in the world, and especially those tied to the entertainment industry. He was a prominent face on The Mary Tyler Moore Show, starred in Lou Grant, and voiced a loveable elderly man in the animated movie Up. This is a very short list of the multitude of projects he was a part of during his career. After talking with his colleagues, admirers and family at the 12th Annual Ed Asner Celebrity Poker Night, it’s clear his roster of work was only a small part of his life. Mentorship and family were his focus and the legacy he has left to Hollywood.

Foudners of the Ed Asner Family Center, Matt & Navah Asner at the 12th Annual Ed Asner & Friends Celebrity Poker Tournament (Photo Credit: Sarah Meyer)
Comedian Rick Glassman attends the 12th Annual Ed Asner & Friends Celebrity Poker Tournament (Photo Credit: Sarah Meyer)
Actress Patrika Darbo attends the 12th Annual Ed Asner & Friends Celebrity Poker Tournament (Photo Credit: Sarah Meyer)
Actor Samm Levine attends the 12th Annual Ed Asner & Friends Celebrity Poker Tournament (Photo Credit: Sarah Meyer)
Rodney Peete & Holly Robinson Peete attend the 12th Annual Ed Asner & Friends Celebrity Poker Tournament (Photo Credit: Sarah Meyer)
Tom Kenny (voice of SpongeBob SquarePants) attends the 12th Annual Ed Asner & Friends Celebrity Poker Tournament (Photo Credit: Sarah Meyer)

Thanks to Ed’s son, Matt Asner and his wife Navah, his name will continue to live on for years to come. The poker tournamane is an annual event held to raise money for the Ed Asner Family Center, which offers inclusive day camps, expressive arts and vocational enrichment programs for all abilities at their center, six days a week, as well as health and wellness classes. They offer low cost mental health counseling and group counseling services with highly trained therapists and have an Adult Day Program. The centers classes and sessions promote self-confidence and balance, something that will translate in all areas in life, including an area that needs much attention in the disability world; employment – as over 80% of individuals with a cognitive disability are unemployed or underemployed. As one mother of an Ed Asner Family Center attendee shared during the event, the center gives people with special needs purpose – which is what we all seek out of life.

Abbey Romeo Lutes from Netflix’s Love on the Spectrum attends the 12th Annual Ed Asner & Friends Celebrity Poker Tournament (Photo Credit: Sarah Meyer)
Antiques Roadshow host Mark L. Walberg attends the 12th Annual Ed Asner & Friends Celebrity Poker Tournament (Photo Credit: Sarah Meyer)
Actress Jill Whelan attends the 12th Annual Ed Asner & Friends Celebrity Poker Tournament (Photo Credit: Sarah Meyer)
Actor Dave Foley attends the 12th Annual Ed Asner & Friends Celebrity Poker Tournament (Photo Credit: Sarah Meyer)
Actress Maureen McCormick with Navah Asner at the 12th Annual Ed Asner & Friends Celebrity Poker Tournament (Photo Credit: Sarah Meyer)
Nick Di Nieri, host for the nights auction, attends the 12th Annual Ed Asner & Friends Celebrity Poker Tournament (Photo Credit: Sarah Meyer)

Matt and Navah Asner, who founded the Ed Asner Family Center have 3 children with autism, and most people in attendance said they knew someone with autism or special needs – so this charitable event was near and dear to the hearts of all attendees. The event included a live auction, a raffle of great prizes and lots and lots of poker, to raise money for the Ed Asner Family Center. With funds raised, the center will be ableto continue bringing purpose to the lives of those who utilize their resources.

Former Pro-Footballer Emmitt Smith and fellow poker players at the 12th Annual Ed Asner & Friends Celebrity Poker Tournament (Photo Credit: Sarah Meyer)
Former Pro-Footballer Rodney Peete and fellow poker plays at the 12th Annual Ed Asner & Friends Celebrity Poker Tournament (Photo Credit: Sarah Meyer)
Blackjack tables for guests were available with “fun money” at the 12th Annual Ed Asner & Friends Celebrity Poker Tournament (Photo Credit: Sarah Meyer)
Matt & Navah Asner with Ed Asner Family Center families at the 12th Annual Ed Asner & Friends Celebrity Poker Tournament (Photo Credit: Sarah Meyer)
Guests mingle during a break from poker play at the 12th Annual Ed Asner & Friends Celebrity Poker Tournament (Photo Credit: Sarah Meyer)

The event was held at CBS’s Radford Studios in Studio City, California, where Ed Asner himself filmed his shows for many years. Nestled among the backlot “streets of New York” were poker tables, black jack and roulette tables, cocktail bars and snacks, including Pink’s hot dogs. Guests mingled under twinkling lights as jazz music was heard, and bets were placed. During the auction, over $18,000 alone was made on two signed guitars. Celebrity guests included Steve Lukather (Toto lead guitarist), William Stanford Davis (Abbott Elementary), Tom Kenny (SpongeBob SquarePants), Ron Funches (Comedian), Maureen McCormick (The Brady Bunch), Rodney Peete (Former NFL), Daniel Ross (Voice of Donald Duck), Mindy Sterling (Austin Powers), Peter Jason (Deadwood), Mark L. Walberg (Antiques Roadshow), Mimi Rogers (Bosch), Yancey Arias (Queen of the South), Phil Lamarr (MadTV), Calum Worthy (The Act), Frances Fisher (Titanic), Ron Funches (Comedian), Holly Robinson Peete (21 Jump Street TV series), Rick Glassman (Comedian; Not Dead Yet), Abbey Romeo (Love on the Spectrum), David Isaacman (Love on the Spectrum), Johnny Dowers (The Bridge), Tom Malloy (Actor, Producer), Gregory Harrison (General Hospital), Benito Martinez (The Shield), Sue Ann Pien (As We See It), Fred Melamed (Barry), Patrika Darbo (Days of Our Lives), Casey Abrams (American Idol), Cathy Podewell (Dallas), Roger Cross (Continuum), Catherine Bach (The Dukes of Hazzard), Jill Whelan (The Love Boat), Jennifer Elise Cox (The Brady Bunch Movie), Claudia Wells (Back to the Future), Vince Lozano (Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl), Tony Denison (The Closer), Jill-Michele Meleán (Comedian), Dave Foley (Actor), Dylan Brody (Comedian), Dale Wade Davis (Actor), Natalie Burn (Actress), Natasha Blasick (Actress), Charles Agron (Producer), Robert Costanzo (Total Recall), Steven Lolli (Comedian), Joe Cortese (Green Book), John Savage (Actor) & many more.

Video of Sarah’s interviews with stars on the red carpet can be found here. To learn more about the Ed Asner Family Center and their programming, and to donate to the organization, visit edasnerfamilycenter.org.

Author

  • Sarah Meyer

    Sarah Meyer is a public relations professional and journalist, with a passion for pop culture, entertainment and fashion.

    View all posts
About Sarah Meyer 39 Articles
Sarah Meyer is a public relations professional and journalist, with a passion for pop culture, entertainment and fashion.

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.


*