By  on October 13, 2006

NEW YORK — It was a cocktail party and fund-raiser where guests clearly felt committed to the cause.

"Here in New York, people are connected," said actor Jason Lewis, who was among the 300 or so celebrities, models, media and fashion executives on the rooftop garden of Rockefeller Center Wednesday night to help Saks Fifth Avenue launch its 2006 "Key to the Cure" campaign to fight cancer. "In L.A., it seems like with events like these, it becomes just the popular thing."

Saks chairman and chief executive officer Steve Sadove, who lost a sister to cancer, said, "It's our biggest fund-raiser. Saks has raised over $20 million in seven years."

Sadove was co-host of the event with Charla Lawhon, managing editor of In Style.

Also spotted in the crowd were Sarah Wynter, Elizabeth Banks, Olivia Wilde, Rose Byrne, Robert Verdi, Lisa Palleschi, Fern Mallis, Elizabeth Loomis, Evelyn Lauder, Jamie Tisch, Douglas Hannant, Josie Natori, Nanette Lepore, Holly Dunlap of Hollywould, Andrew Rosen and Dr. Kap Lesesne, who is selling his new Skin Therapie line at three Saks doors.

In addition to selling tickets for the party, Saks will donate 2 percent of its sales chainwide from Oct. 12 to 15 to more than 50 charitable programs dedicated to finding new detection methods, treatments and a cure for women's cancers. The Saks initiative is a partnership with the Entertainment Industry Foundation's Women's Cancer Research Fund. Mercedes-Benz USA is offering additional support and created a signature edition of its E 350 luxury sedan to benefit the organization.

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