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‘Sweet’ time for Sox fans in D.C.

Smokey Robinson performing “Sweet Caroline’’ with Red Sox fans at the Kennedy Center Honors taping.
Smokey Robinson performing “Sweet Caroline’’ with Red Sox fans at the Kennedy Center Honors taping.jeffrey R. staab/cbs/CBS

During this year’s Kennedy Center Honors, which were taped on Sunday and will air on CBS on Dec. 27, Smokey Robinson paid tribute to one of the night’s honorees, Neil Diamond, by singing his hit “Sweet Caroline.’’ During the performance, Robinson was suddenly joined by a throng of Red Sox fans who just happened to be in the house in their fan gear, and by Caroline Kennedy, the song’s namesake. Apparently, it was Claire Durant in Tom Werner’s office who coordinated the Sox surprise during the ceremony. She bused about 80 fans to Washington on Saturday and kept them busy until they performed on Sunday. Longtime Red Sox supporter Gary Smith and his wife, Lynne, flew down and took part in the festivities (they wisely avoided the long bus ride) and said the whole experience was a blast. The group gathered at the Georgetown Red Sox bar Rhino, and met up again for a rehearsal before the show. Smith said that even though the group’s time in the great hall was kept to a minimum, he did manage to spot Kevin Kline in the crowd. Gary Smith added that while he enjoyed Robinson’s performance of “Sweet Caroline,’’ “I like Neil Diamond’s better.’’