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Whoopi's having fun on the North Shore

By Carol Beggy and Mark Shanahan
Globe Columnists / May 15, 2004

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SHE'S THE HIT OF GLOUCESTER -- WHOOPI!

Sightings of actress-comedian Whoopi Goldberg are becoming a common occurrence in Gloucester. The Academy Award winner regularly lunches at McT's Lobster House & Tavern and on Mother's Day stepped behind the bar at Captain Carlo's Fish Market to serve beer and wine to patrons. When we tried yesterday to confirm a few details with Captain Carlo's, which an old friend of Goldberg co-owns, we were told: "It's nothing anyone's trying to hide; she's a friend and we respect her privacy." Reports on Cape Ann have Goldberg buying a place there, although it appears she's renting for the season. Her representatives wouldn't talk about her whereabouts, but said there is no word yet on the fate of her sitcom, "Whoopi," that drew middling ratings and much better reviews.DINING IN Actor and local guy made good Mark Wahlberg ("The Italian Job" and "The Perfect Storm") was at Excelsior Thursday night with friends enjoying food in the dining room and at the bar. We're told that the wine was carefully chosen: Lewis Cabernet Sauvignon Reserve Napa Valley, an incredibly small production wine shipped directly from the winemaker Randy Lewis to the Boylston Street restaurant.

TV IDOLS

Tonight the Cutler Majestic Theatre will light up with local luminaries presenting awards to Emerson students for everything from best film to best poetry to best press kit. The presenters list includes: Children's TV legend Rex Trailer; Board of Trustees chair Ted Cutler; comedian and alum Bill Dana (aka Jose Jimenez); and news anchors Sean Hennessey (Channel 7), alum David Wade (Fox 25), Randy Price (Channel 7), and alum Ed Harding (Channel 5).

DOCTORS HERE; DOCTORS THERE

Boston Pops maestro Keith Lockhart and four-time Emmy Award-winning actress Alfre Woodard will receive honorary degrees from Boston University tomorrow. Also being honored with degrees are: scientist/entrepreneur J. Craig Venter; Archbishop Anastasios of Albania; author and Nobel laureate Saul Bellow; entrepreneur/philanthropist Irwin Chafetz; and Congressman Ed Markey. . . .Tomorrow Pine Manor College in Chestnut Hill will honor alum Priscilla Dewey Houghton, wife of Congressman Amo Houghton of New York; Barbara Lee, principal of the Barbara Lee Family Foundation; and Dr. Gloria White-Hammond, pediatrician and co-pastor of the Bethel AME Methodist Church in Jamaica Plain.

WE WANT LESCROART

Best-selling writer John Lescroart is at the Wauwinet, an inn on Nantucket, this weekend for a book signing and banquet dinner at TOPPER'S Restaurant. (The Wauwinet's author series wraps up with Ben Sherwood, author of "The Death and Life of Charlie St. Cloud" the weekend of June 5 and 6.)

NO CHARGE

Recently we told you that in honor of Marcus Loew, founder of the Loews movie chain, anyone with the first or last name of Marcus gets in free. Well, it's true. Former Rolling Stone editor Greil Marcus sent an e-mail the other day thanking us for the tip. The "Lipstick Traces" author took his family to see "Kill Bill, Vol. 2" at a Loews in San Francisco -- for free. The promotion ended Thursday.

GALA ADDS SOME GLITTER

The Federation for Children With Special Needs will celebrate its 30th year Friday with a gala at the Seaport Hotel honoring Dr. Allen C. Crocker. Crocker is associate professor of pediatrics at Harvard Medical School and program director for the university's Institute for Community Inclusion. He's credited by the federation "with putting families and children with special needs first for 50 years." Among those slated to attend are: Academy Award-winning actor Chris Cooper and his wife, writer/actress Marianne Leone Cooper; actor Robert Wahlberg and his wife, Gina; the trio behind Dream Alley Pictures -- Christo Tsiaras, Jenn Heffernan, and Glenn Kesner; and Emerson alum Dorothy Aufiero of Silent Partner Pictures.

Names can be reached at names@globe.com or at 617-929-8253.

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