Young at heart! Now entering her tenth decade, beloved actress and singer Doris Day made a rare public appearance this weekend, mingling with fans for the first time in more than 20 years.
The Oscar-nominated Hollywood legend made the surprise appearance at a celebration in her current residence of Carmel-by-the-Sea, Calif. The bash, held on Friday, April 4, was thrown in honor of the iconic Calamity Jane star’s 90th birthday.
Day stunned at the event, looking as beautiful as ever in a white ensemble with her hair curled. Fans, who traveled to the soiree without knowing Day would attend, got the chance to meet the icon, who reportedly stayed after the celebrations to meet each attendee personally.
Amidst cake, renditions of “Happy Birthday,” and a retrospective of Day’s illustrious career, a live auction was held to benefit the Doris Day Animal Foundation. The foundation, which provides for animal rescue organizations and aids animal clinics, had a goal to raise $90,000 in recognition of Day’s milestone birthday.
“I just loved it,” Day said of the event, according to a release. She went on to add about her fans, “I am so very grateful to them all.”
Day, who wrapped her Golden Globe-nominated Doris Day Show in 1973, has been notably reclusive in recent years, rarely giving interviews and staying out of the public eye. The “Que Sera, Sera” singer released a new album, My Heart, in 2011, but did little public promotion for the project.
Speaking to Terry Gross on NPR’s Fresh Air back in 2012, Day explained her departure from the industry, saying, “To be in films, when I think about that, I thought I should’ve stayed because I loved that so much, but there were all kinds of new people coming up and I thought I’ve done mine. I’ve had a great time. So now it’s their turn.” Before her retirement, Day starred in major films including Pillow Talk, The Tunnel of Love, and Midnight Lace.
In lieu of birthday gifts, Doris asked all her fans to make a donation to the Doris Day Animal Foundation.
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