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Local Conservation Efforts To Be Highlighted At Annual Hamptons Summer Benefit

Nicole Barylski

Betsy Pinover, last year's honoree April Gornik, and co-chair Anne Erni. (Photo: Rob Rich/SocietyAllure.com)

The Nature Conservancy on Long Island will raise vital funding for its efforts to safeguard, maintain and repair the area's bays, harbors, fisheries, wetlands and forests during the Conservancy's Summer Benefit on Saturday, June 30.

"On Long Island, we are hard at work restoring swimmable, fishable and drinkable waters -using science, cutting-edge technology, advocacy and public funding," explained Nancy Kelley, executive director of The Nature Conservancy on Long Island. "The issue of nitrogen pollution from sewage is still the biggest environmental challenge we face. Nitrogen harms our bays and harbors - with devastating impacts on wetlands, seagrass, fish and shellfish. The problem is only expected to get worse unless action is taken."

Taking place on the grounds of the Center for Conservation in East Hampton, the evening will kick-off at 7 p.m. with a cocktail hour complete with oysters from the waters off Mashomack Preserve. Then, guests will feast on a sustainable dinner by Glorious Foods and wine donated by Domaine Franey. The evening will culminate with dessert and dancing with music from DJ David Kiss.

The Summer Benefit, which is being co-chaired by Anne and Nicolas Erni, Beverly and Michael Kazickas, and Marie and Kenneth Wong, will commemorate several recent accomplishments, including the passage of new regulations to halt New York's diamondback terrapin turtles from drowning in crab traps, procuring millions in public funding to better water quality across Long Island, and ramping up efforts to preserve 800-acre Plum Island.

"We are making significant progress," Kelley noted. "We are committed to restoring our waters locally, and we hope to use that knowledge with our colleagues across the state of New York, nation and the globe as we tackle this worldwide crisis together."

Partygoers will also be able to explore Nature Depends on Us, a photographic exhibit curated by local photographer, Anthony Graziano, that focuses on people in nature on Long Island.

Tickets start at $1,500 ($250 for juniors - 21 to 30). Tickets must be purchased in advance.

The Nature Conservancy collaborates with partners in over 65 countries to conserve our planet for generations to come.

The Nature Conservancy's Center for Conservation is located at 142 Sag Harbor Turnpike in East Hampton. To purchase a ticket, contact Ann Lader at 631-367-3384 ext. 138 or visit www.nature.org.

Nicole is the Editor-in-Chief of Hamptons.com where she focuses on lifestyle, nightlife, and mixology. She grew up in the Hamptons and currently resides in Water Mill. www.hamptons.com NicoleBarylski NicoleBarylski

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