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Kate Upton Buys $25,000 Ticket to the Met Gala

The "Sports Illustrated" swimsuit model is paying her own way into Monday's extra-extra-VIP event in New York.

Sports Illustrated

Who says celebrities get everything for free?

Kate Upton, recently anointed cover girl of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue, paid for her ticket to the Met Costume Institute Gala in New York City, a source close to the model confirms to THR. She will attend Monday's event with Michael Kors, and will sit at the designer's table, wearing one of his gowns.

The price tag: $25,000, according to Page Six, which reports that Upton wrote Anna Wintour a check on the spot while meeting with the Vogue editor at the magazine's offices.

VIDEO: Kate Upton Attends THR/Google Party in DC

Wintour gets final word on the guest list at the annual gala -- one of spring's hottest and most-sought-after tickets -- which helps fund the Metropolitan Museum of Art's Costume Institute. Monday's event will pay tribute to Miuccia Prada and Elsa Schiaparelli and help launch the museum's new exhibition, “Schiaparelli and Prada: Impossible Conversations."

Upton's generous donation is out of the norm for the rich and famous, who are often red-carpet arm candy for designers picking up the tab in exchange for extra exposure. The rich and perhaps non-famous aching to get into the gala are required to pay $25K for a seat.   VIP attendees this year include Prada fan Carey Mulligan, Jennifer Lopez, Dakota Fanning and Victoria Beckham.

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