Rep. Tom Downey (D-N.Y.) will be among those taking part early this morning in the Face the World 10K. The 10-kilometer race at West Potomac Park benefits Interaction, a consortium of charitable groups working to fight starvation in Africa, as well as Bread for the City, a local agency for the hungry.

Marianna Tcherkassky, formerly of the Washington Ballet and now a principal dancer with the American Ballet Theatre, and ABT principal Fernando Bujones have been invited by President Reagan to perform at the White House April 17. The duo will perform works from Eugene Loring, Alvin Ailey and Marius Petipa . . .

Tom Wolfe, author of such books as "The Right Stuff," will receive the John Dos Passos Prize for Literature from Longwood College in Farmville, Va., officials said yesterday. Wolfe will accept the medal and $1,000 at an April 17 ceremony at the campus' Wygal Auditorium and read from recent work. A nephew of the late Frances Roberdeau Wolfe of Richmond, a Longwood College graduate and benefactor, Wolfe is the fifth winner of the prize since its founding at Longwood in 1980 . . .

Frank Sinatra sued Capitol Records yesterday, claiming it has distributed and sold his recordings under "bargain basement" labels. In a Los Angeles Superior Court suit, Sinatra contends that his master recordings have been released under such labels as Pickwick Records, Star Records and Pair Records, and that the they were of "inferior quality." Spokesmen for Capitol were unavailable . . .

Thousands of Chinese yesterday lined up 12 hours before tickets went on sale for Sunday's concert by Wham! in Peking, the first there by a major Western rock band. Tickets to the 10,000-seat Workers Gymnasium -- which go for $1.80 each with a cassette of the group's bestselling album "Make It Big" thrown in -- sold out in several hours . . .

The heavy metal band Foreigner has enjoyed immense commercial success since its U.S debut at the Bayou on May 14, 1976. The band will celebrate its anniversary by playing the same venue this May 14. But the show, an MTV promotion, is invitation-only. . .

Former representative John W. Jenrette Jr. entered a federal prison in Atlanta yesterday to begin serving his two-year sentence for bribery and conspiracy convictions stemming from the FBI's Abscam investigation . . .