Music superstar DIANA ROSS has been announced as this year’s headliner for Variety’s Dinner with the Stars. The April 28 gala will be held at the Peabody Opera House, with all proceeds from the event benefiting Variety the Children’s Charity of St. Louis, which is celebrating 80 years of helping kids with disabilities. For more information, visit

The lineup for ST. LOUIS SYMPHONY’S 2012 European tour, the first under music director DAVID ROBERTSON, has been announced. The orchestra will make debut performances at the Berliner Festspiele: Musikfest Berlin, the Lucerne Festival and at the Salle Pleyel in Paris. Details also are being worked out for a concert date in London. The concerts, to take place Sept. 4 to 7, will feature works by Beethoven, Brahms, Sibelius, Schoenberg, Gershwin, Ives and Elliot Carter.

It’s raining babies at the SAINT LOUIS ZOO! It’s only February, but already, the zoo has experienced the arrival of several youngsters, including a king penguin chick hatched at Penguin & Puffin Coast on Jan. 8. The following day, Studebaker, a 42- pound endangered bull banteng calf, was born to firsttime mom, Bentley, and dad, Knox. A female Speke’s gazelle, along with multiple insect hatchlings like giant spiny walking sticks and greater angle-winged katydids also made their debut at the zoo last month.

Author and selfproclaimed ‘tiger mom’ AMY CHUA will be in town next week for a discussion and signing of her bestselling memoir, Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother. Chua’s book on extreme ‘Chinese-style’ parenting ignited a firestorm of debate when it came out last year. Her Feb. 9 appearance at St. Louis County Library headquarters begins at 7 p.m., and is free and open to the public.

Lodging Hospitality Management (LHM) topper BOB O’LOUGHLIN recently came faceto- face with another O’Loughlin: actor ALEX O’LOUGHLIN, star of the new CBS drama series, Hawaii 5-0. It’s not yet known whether the two men are related, but with both having descendants from Ireland, they believe that there’s a family connection somewhere. Bob O’Loughlin was on Oahu, Hawaii, as part of an owners’ gathering for Hilton Hotels (St. Louis-based LHM owns several Hilton properties).

It’s become a St. Louis tradition: The JCC Used Book Sale takes place Feb. 5 through Feb. 9 at the Staenberg Family Complex Arts & Education building. Admission is free, except for a $10 fee for Preview Day Sunday (from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.). Thousands of titles, from mysteries and biographies to cookbooks and gardening, will be available.