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Celebrating Friends

Originally Posted: December 13, 2007

Nicole B. Brewer

Southampton's Frank and Mary Skillern hosted a festive holiday event to toast the committees, supporters, and friends of the annual Ann Liguori Celebrity Golf Tournament now celebrating its 10th year raising funds for the American Cancer Society.

Mary Skillern, Ann Liguori, and Marla Schwenk at the cocktail party for the Ann
Liguori Celebrity Golf Tournament.

Held on the Monday before Memorial Day Weekend every May, the fun-filled celebrity tournament has become the talk of the Hamptons. Ann and her guests return every year to play golf, party, and raise money for a very special cause. Among the many celebrities who have participated in the Classic are actors Tony LoBianco of "The French Connection", Jack McGee of FX's hit series "Rescue Me", and Alex Hyde White of "Pretty Woman" and "Indiana Jones," former pro football players Gerry Philbin, Nick Buoniconti, Freeman McNeil, and Brian Kelley; former NY Mets pitcher Ron Darling and manager Buddy Harrelson, and NY Yankees ambassador Gene Michael.

Ann took the occasion to announce the creation of The Ann Liguori Foundation dedicated to raising money and awareness for cancer-related organizations focusing on research, education, prevention and care and for individuals and organizations on the East End who need our help and support.

Among the many supporters raising a glass to toast Ann were Marla Schwenk, John Murray, Janis and Richard Grim, Diane and Charlie Nicholson, Therese Flaherty, Ed Bilworth, Liz Giordano, Sarah Tracey, Joe Dennison, Stephen Haynes, George Hallinan, Scott Vallary, and golf pro Joseph Ingoglia.

Adding a special touch to the event were Carmine Calabro and Andrew Wargo who alternated at the piano keeping the air filled with holiday tunes while artist Don Duga sketched the scene throughout the evening.

Once again, The Shinnecock Nation welcomed the community to the Shinnecock Museum and Cultural Center for their annual Winter Arts and Crafts Festival, an amazing showcase for the incredibly diverse and talented artists who work on the Reservation. As always, Shinnecock Elder Elizabeth Thunderbird Haile was on hand to meet and greet guests who came from all over Long Island, Connecticut, and New Jersey for the weekend long festival.

Shinnecock Elder Elizabeth Thunderbird Haile at the Winter Arts and Crafts Festival.

Throughout the museum, tribe members displayed their creations ranging from alabaster sculpture to intricate hand beading to painting. At one table, the Tarrant Family showed off with great pride the hand-sewn and beaded moccasins, bags and jewelry they had made. Particularly impressive was the last piece, a leg adornment, for a regalia, the traditional brightly beaded and painted garb the Shinnecocks wear for major ceremonies, created painstakingly over 18 months by Tina Tarrant.

Across the room, highly regarded painter David Bunn Martine, who has displayed his work at major galleries and museums, was hard at work sketching out the details for his next painting. Dennis King was carving a piece of wood that would soon become a cane. Everywhere one turned there was someone sewing, carving, or painting which was a special treat for many of the families and their young children.

On the Museum's lower level there was a special Kids Zone for the little tykes with face painting and educational games. Most importantly, this was where ladies from the tribe had set up a buffet featuring traditional Shinnecock foods. We sampled Shelley Moore's highly addictive Samp fry bread dusted with your choice of powdered and cinnamon sugar. We found out it was even better with a big ladle full of Janice Norwood's Blueberry Slump on top! Eleanor Franklin and Dolores Long were serving up tasty bowls of Clam Chowder and other Shinnecock dishes.

Sacred Hearts of Jesus and Mary Church, now celebrating its 100th anniversary on Hill Street, took over The Plaza Café for their annual Holly Dinner and what a festive and delicious dinner it was! The Gulija Family, who already have three New York Times stars to their credit, could have easily racked up a fourth with the dinner they prepared for their fellow parishioners.

Patricia Corrigan and Mary Steinbrecher at the annual Holly Dinner.

As always, the crowd was a mix of long time local residents, new folks to the area, and former parishioners who came back to Southampton especially for this annual Holiday reunion. Organizers had smartly arranged for two seatings with more than enough time for folks to enjoy a leisurely repast. Chef Doug Gulija, famed for his deft handling of seafood and his use of local produce, created a meal that was transcendent - regardless of which of the choices one selected.

For starters, there was pumpkin soup with lobster nuggets, grilled shrimp wrapped in Prosciutto and a mesclun salad with tiny goat cheese niblets and pomegranate seeds. Main course included an amazing Flat Iron Steak, sautéed cod, and the best roast chicken with harvest vegetables on the planet.

Among those dining sumptuously in the elegant setting were Robert and Eileen Essay, Pat and Ed Corrigan, Phyl and Steven Marciw, Charles and Giovanna Mottern, Queenie Gilmartin, Marge Glennen, Paul and Eileen Pepito, Charlie and Noreen Conroy, Mary Nadurak, Rosalie and Bert Holder, Walter and Natalie Hertz, Bill and Deborah Bates, Gloria Doyle and assorted members of the Bourke Family including Sheila, Tim, Kim, and Tom, and first timers Mary Ann and Jack Hanlon.

Congratulations to the Holly Dinner Committee who worked to make this a splendid affair: Pat Corrigan, Peg and Pat Jordan, Mike Kent, Fred Weinfurt, Joan Heinz, Mary Steinbrecher and Pastor, Father Jeff Madley.

And special kudos to Doug, George and the whole Gulija family!

Nicole, an award-winning journalist, is Executive Editor & Publisher of Hamptons.com where she focuses on celebrity interviews, fine living and design, social events, fashion and beauty. She lives on the North Fork with her husband, their two daughters, and Bernese Mountain dog, Cooper. www.hamptons.com HamptonsOnline NicoleBBrewer NicoleBBrewer NicoleBBrewer

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