The Princess of Wales, some of the nation's finest fiction writers and Richard Dreyfuss are among those joining in on October social events here. Oct. 1

"A Sense of Place," a gala to benefit the endowment fund of the PEN/Faulkner Award for Fiction, features readings by Norman Mailer, Ken Kesey, Eudora Welty, Shelby Foote, John Edgar Wideman and others at the Folger Shakespeare Library, which administers the prize. Tickets are $350. Call (202) 636-8745. Oct. 2

The National Women's Political Caucus's annual "Good Guys" awards dinner at the Capital Hilton honors Rep. Augustus "Gus" Hawkins (D-Calif.), actor Richard Dreyfuss, Sen. James Jeffords (R-Vt.) and seven others. Tickets are $75 for members and $150 for guests. Call (202) 898-1100.

Oct. 4

Diana, Princess of Wales, is guest of honor at a benefit sponsored by the ADT security company for the London City Ballet (of which she is a patron), the Washington Ballet and Grandma's House at the Departmental Auditorium. Tickets are $2,500 and $3,500. Call (301) 235-9515. Oct. 5

Former Redskins coach and Cleveland Browns quarterback Otto Graham receives the Symbol of Courage Award at the J.W. Marriott Hotel at the fifth-anniversary gala for the Vincent T. Lombardi Cancer Research Center at Georgetown University Medical Center. Tickets start at $250. Call (202) 687-1067. Oct. 6

Rep. Connie Morella (R-Md.) is the keynoter for "Fast Forward," the seventh annual gala of the Human Rights Campaign Fund, a national gay rights organization, at the Sheraton Washington Hotel. Tickets start at $175. Call (202) 628-4160.

Oct. 7

"A Birthday Tribute to Larry Brown," a salute to the Redskins running back, will be at RFK Stadium to benefit the Deafness Research Foundation, the Kingsbury Center, the National Learning Center and the United Negro College Fund. The event features celebrity team competitions and a catered picnic on the sidelines. Tickets start at $35 for guests under age 16; $75 for those 16 and over. Call (202) 457-0393. Oct. 12

"A Tribute to Excellence," the Greater Southeast Community Hospital Foundation benefit at the Hyatt Regency Hotel, features dancing to the Richard Bray Orchestra. Tickets are $75. Call (202) 574-5427. Oct. 18

House Majority Whip William H. Gray (D-Pa.) is the keynoter at the first Bishop John T. Walker Memorial Dinner given at the Sheraton Washington by Africare, which provides long-term, self-help assistance to more than 20 African countries. Tickets start at $100. Call (202) 745-4578. Oct. 19

An "Evening of Nostalgia in the Blue Room," a celebration of the Shoreham Hotel's 60th anniversary and a benefit for the Woodrow Wilson House, is in the Omni Shoreham's Blue Room. Tickets are $250. Howard Devron and his orchestra perform, as well the original Shoreham Strings. Call (202) 828-7048.

Actor Kevin Costner and other stars of Orion Pictures' "Dances With Wolves" will attend the world premiere of the film, which is a benefit for the Smithsonian's National Museum of the American Indian and Resident Associate Program. Tickets to the premiere at the Cineplex Odeon Uptown and a reception afterward at the Sequoia restaurant are $100; tickets to the film are $25. Call (202) 357-3030. Oct. 20

New York Gov. Mario Cuomo, Annette Funicello and Frankie Avalon will be guests at the Washington Hilton at the National Italian American Foundation's 15th-anniversary dinner, which honors Alan Alda, Italian fashion designer Paola Fendi, Miami Dolphins quarterback Dan Marino and Northwest Airlines CEO Alfred Checchi. Tickets are $200. Call (202) 638-0220. Oct. 22

Arena Stage's 40th Anniversary Gala and Tribute to Zelda Fichandler at the Departmental Auditorium features performances by Arena alumni Robert Prosky, Jane Alexander and others and dancing to the Gene Donati Orchestra. Tickets, by invitation, start at $250. Call (202) 554-9066. Oct. 26

Four guests of the first Washington Diamond Ball, a masquerade ball benefiting the Leukemia Society of America, at the Ritz Carlton, Pentagon City, will leave the gala with diamonds worth a total of $15,000. Guests will receive gems on arrival -- three will be genuine diamonds. The guest with the "most creative fantasy costume" wins the fourth diamond. Tickets are $50. Call (703) 960-1100. Oct. 27

The U.N. Concert and Dinner features a performance by Tommy Tune in a "Tribute to Fred Astaire" at the Kennedy Center Concert Hall and Phylicia Rashad & Company as entertainment at the dinner dance that follows at the Washington Hilton. Tickets to Tune's performance are $10 to $25 and are available at the Kennedy Center box office. Tickets to the concert and dinner are $300. Call (202) 289-6131.