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Preparations for Oscar parties in full swing

March 2, 2010 12:00:00 AM PST
The countdown to the Oscars is in full swing, especially at all the Oscar party locations. A lot of people are working hard to make sure the star-studded celebrations go off without a hitch including one very popular party in West Hollywood.With amazing Italian delicacies capped off with a tiny red piano cake, it could only mean one thing, the Elton John Oscar Night Viewing party is only days away.

"Every year in the past Elton has played on a red piano. I did a red piano this year just for fun," said Chef Wayne Elias of Crumble Catering.

Elias is the man in charge of creating the gastronomical goodies that will be served to more than 700 guests at Sunday's event at the Pacific Design Center in West Hollywood.

"We cook special orders, we take care of everybody's personal needs," said Elias. "It is a little hairy but it's a lot of fun at the same time."

Elias, who is the owner of the Vermont Restaurant and Crumble Catering, has created an Italian based menu at Sir Elton John's request.

"We're doing something Italian themed; fresh, simple, clean, using all organic produce and fish," said Elias.

But the event Sunday is more than just fine food and glamour. It's also the top fundraiser for the Elton John AIDS Foundation, which has raised more than $175 million in AIDS research and support.

"We are one of the ten largest foundations in this country supporting the issue of HIV," said the Elton John AIDS Foundation Director Scott Campbell.

Campbell says the party started as an intimate affair at a Beverly Hills restaurant that raised $300,000. Eighteen years later, the party is expected to raise $4.5 million.

"Elton is very involved. In fact I just talked to him on the phone because he always wants updates on who's coming and what we're doing," said Campbell. "He gets here soon and he's extremely involved. This is a big thing."

Many celebrities are expected at the Elton John party including stars from the world of music, film and sports.