COMEDY actress Karen Dunbar will lead a host of celebrities in raising a toast to Rabbie Burns on Friday night.

Nearly 600 invited guests are expected to attend the 10th ­annual Celebration of Burns, organised by the Prince and Princess of Wales Hospice, at Glasgow's Hilton Hotel.

Broadcaster Viv Lumsden hosts the night, with comedy queen Karen performing a spirited rendition of Tam O'Shanter.

Comic Alan Anderson will make the Toast to the Lassies and the Reply to the Laddies will come from River City stalwart Libby McArthur with ceilidh band Callanish providing the music.

"We are delighted to be hosting our 10th annual Celebration of Burns. It a hugely successful night and this year is no different," says Ashley Thomson, events and corporate fundraiser at the hospice.

"It is nights like this one that help us to raise much-needed funds and continue the great work of Glasgow's hospice.

"Without the support of the attendees, we couldn't keep caring for our patients and their loved ones."

The Evening Times is backing the hospice's Brick by Brick Appeal to build a new facility in Glasgow. In addition to enhancing existing services for adults, it will also encompass a specialist palliative care service for young people aged 15 and above for the first time.

Planning for the new hospice on a site next to Bellahouston Park has been approved by Glasgow City Council.

Meanwhile, the first Turbans and Tartan Burns Supper will be held in Glasgow's Thistle ­Hotel for blood cancer charities.

Money raised by the event on January 26 will go to Delete Blood Cancer and the Jaskomal Foundation.

The foundation was set up in March last year following the death of 23-year-old Sikh ­woman Jaskomal Sher-Gill who battled blood cancer for two years.

Her death highlighted the fact that only 4% of people on the Anthony Nolan register are Asian. The foundation in Jaskomal's name aims to grow the register to give more people from the Asian community the chance of life.

Organisers say the event will combine traditional Scottish and Punjabi entertainment with a few surprises.

The spokesman said: "This is the first of what we hope will become an annual event to raise money for good causes."

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