Smith to be buried after `very pink' service

PEOPLE & PLACES

March 02, 2007

Former Playboy Playmate Anna Nicole Smith will be buried beside her son today in a custom-made gown after an extravagant, private and "very pink" memorial service bringing together the three people battling for custody of her baby daughter.

The memorial service at Mount Horeb Baptist Church, west of downtown Nassau, the Bahamas, will be "very pink" and "over the top," with up to 300 guests, a singer and gazillions of pink flowers, organizer Patrik Simpson told the Associated Press.

The burial will be much more intimate, with about 30 people, he said. Both the funeral and burial will be closed to the public.

Smith, 39, died in Florida on Feb. 8, setting off a battle between her partner, Howard K. Stern; her mother, Virgie Arthur; and her ex-boyfriend Larry Birkhead over the burial and custody of her 5-month- old daughter Dannielynn. A Florida judge ruled last week that Richard Milstein, the court-appointed advocate of Dannielynn, would receive Smith's body. Arthur and Birkhead appealed; the appeals court upheld the judge's decision in a ruling Wednesday.

WBAL still on top

The February sweeps, a key ratings period for television stations, saw WBAL (Channel 11), the NBC affiliate, ride home again with the trophy as the Baltimore market's leader, although some of its competitors gained viewers in several time slots.

Jennifer Koster, a spokeswoman for WBAL, said its local newscasts are "the most watched in the state," sweeping the competition at 5 p.m. (with 111,000 viewers), 6 p.m. (117,000) and 11 p.m. (128,000). The station also said it won the weekday 6 a.m. to 7 a.m. morning newscast with an average of 86,000 households, against a second-place 76,000 on CBS affiliate WJZ, Channel 13.

In a news release, WJZ claimed the top spot in the 9 a.m. to noon slot. It also led the market in midafternoon with Dr. Phil, while ABC affiliate WMAR, Channel 2, had its highest evening ratings with Wheel of Fortune.

Nick Madigan

Stork report

Welsh singer Charlotte Church, who has performed for former President Bill Clinton and Pope John Paul II, announced yesterday that she is pregnant. According to her Web site, Church and rugby star-boyfriend Gavin Henson are "delighted."

The early announcement came, the Web site said, because of media inquiries.

Speculation began about Church's pregnancy when she was seen avoiding alcohol at her 21st-birthday party.

From staff and wire reports

ALMANAC

March 2

1807 Congress outlawed the importing of slaves to the United States, effective the following year.

1933 The movie King Kong had its world premiere in New York.

TODAY'S BIRTHDAYS

88 Jennifer Jones Actress

77 Tom Wolfe Author

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39 Daniel Craig Actor

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