April 21, 1997 12:00 PM

Odds are that Mel Harris has the only home in suburban L.A. with a 1950s-era canoe in the middle of the living room. The forest-green, 16-foot craft was a gift last Christmas from a beau. “It’s the coolest thing I’ve ever seen,” says the star of NBC’s Something So Right, who lives with her son Byron, 13 (by second husband, photographer David Hume Kennerly), and daughter Madeline, 7 (by third husband, actor Cotter Smith), in a five-bedroom Pacific Palisades house. Never mind that her kids have to tiptoe around the fragile objet d’ark. The canoe brings back “a lot of really nice memories” from her summers river-running at Camp Sacajawea in New Jersey, says Harris, 39, who played homemaker Hope on thirtysomething. And it fits in nicely with the rustic decor of the living room, where the family stokes up the fireplace, listens to “the crickets and sees the stars shine through the windows,” she says. “Mel’s adventurous,” explains Something costume designer Greg Lavoi. “She’s parasailed and gone on safaris in Africa. So having a canoe in her living room kind of makes sense.” Some day she may use it elsewhere. “My fantasy,” Harris says, “is to live in the country and have the boat tied to the dock outside my house.”

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