About 800 fans attended a dinner Sunday night at the Capitol Marriott to honor the liberal columnist and raise money for the magazine, the Austin-American (Texas) Statesman reported Monday.
Speakers for the night included public radio's Garrison Keillor, who, with Joe Ely, sang "Today I Started Loving You Again" and "Waltz Across Texas."
Keillor said, "It's good to be in a roomful of Texas liberals, especially in these rocky times."
Comedian Roy Blount Jr. agreed, adding that if someone decided to drop a bomb on the hotel, "all the liberals in Texas would be wiped out."
The Texas Observer, which prides itself on liberal investigative journalism, is taking in about $1 million if contributors are able to match $500,000 given by an unidentified foundation.
Supporters had raised around an additional $450,000 before the end of the program.