updated 10/10/2005 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 10/10/2005 AT 01:00 AM EDT

Some wonderful news came my way the other day: Dana Reeve, diagnosed with lung cancer in August, just 10 months after husband Christopher Reeve's death, is "doing great." On Sept. 21, at an intimate cocktail party for the Christopher Reeve Paralysis Foundation in Manhattan, Dana's close friend and CRPF board member Peter Kiernan announced, "She's absolutely, positively going to be with us for A Magical Evening." That's CRPF's Nov. 17 black-tie benefit, where Dana has vowed to make her first public appearance since starting treatment this summer. Though Reeve's initial prognosis was grim, Kiernan revealed in a more private moment that her doctors now say her "numbers look good" and "everything that's supposed to be shrinking is shrinking." Reeve pal Susan Sarandon, who calls Dana frequently, also told me, "She sounds really good. She's in a great frame of mind." Noting that Dana often seems more upbeat at the beginning of each week, Sarandon also said, "She's staying strong for [their 13-year-old son] Will. He's been through so much in such a short period of time." Focusing on her husband's foundation is helping. As Dana shared in a statement, she can't wait to present the Spirit of Courage award to Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones at the Nov. 17 CRPF gala: "They have been tremendous supporters of the foundation and to Chris and me personally. I'm so happy they've agreed to join us." Dana could easily take the award home herself. As Kiernan put it, "She's in a hell of a fight. But if she could stand by Chris for 10 years, she can certainly deal with cancer. I know she'll be there—and she'll look spectacular."

The opening of Tao Las Vegas at the Venetian—a $20 million sister to N.Y.C.'s Asian hot spot—was a doozy. Eve and Paris Hilton walked 585 feet of red carpet to the club to find go-go dancers and a moat of floating candles. As Nelly hung with Ashanti, Usher sang to Joan Jett's "I Love Rock 'n' Roll." (A night earlier, all three partied there at a 33rd-birthday bash for Janet Jackson's squeeze Jermaine Dupri.) A ringless Jamie-Lynn DiScala mingled in a red minidress. Chelsea Clinton showed off her new beau, fellow Stanford alum Marc Mezvinsky. The next day, I hear, several celebs missed the free private jets home, sleeping off their hangovers instead.

Want to know how Desperate Housewives stud Jesse Metcalfe met his new sweetie, model Courtney Robertson? "She was using the ATM. I was driving by, so I had my friend pull over," he tells Insider. "We [stopped] and I ran up on her." Shameless? Yes. Effective? Well...yes! That was about a year ago, and while they didn't start going out right away, they're definitely dating now. Not only has he escorted her to such events as, oh, let's see, the Emmys, but we spotted Metcalfe with his arm around Robertson coming out of L.A.'s Grove movie theater Sept. 26.

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