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Oceanfront Oasis Soirees

Originally Posted: June 18, 2008

Nicole B. Brewer

Another fabulous week in the Hamptons was capped off by some fantastic parties over the weekend. Our first stop was the benefit committee cocktail party to kick-off the Parrish Art Museum's Landscape Pleasures garden tour at the home of Susan and Louis K. Meisel in Sagaponack. Guests entered the property through the spectacular sculpture garden, passed through the trees and gardens, and then up the steps to the pool area for a summer cocktail.

Alvin Chereskin, Terrie Sultan, Barbra Slifka, and Susan Chereskin at the Landscape
Pleasures cocktial party. Photo by Sam Rivers

Terrie Sultan, Director of the Parrish Art Museum, greeted guests and was excited to talk about the expansion of the museum at its future home on over 14-acres in Water Mill. The new museum, wrote Sultan in the tour journal, is set to, "honor the spectacular beauty, distinctive light, and coastal topography of the surrounding area, which over time has been the source of inspiration for the many world class artists who call the Hamptons home."

Board member Alvin Chereskin and Ira Drukier with wife Gale were on hand enjoying the evening as were artists Hans Ven de Bovenkamp and Maggie Kotuk, poet Harvey Shapiro, writer Gary Lawrence, designer Barclay Butera, Galen Williams, Lee Fryd, and Andrea Gurvitz, to name a few.

Earlier in the day, a symposium took place at the museum where Peggy Cornet, David Bennett, and Wendy Goodman spoke on a variety of topics. On Sunday the actual tour led ticketed guests through the vast gardens of Elli and Guy Bayer, Katerina and Gunter Frangenberg, Herb and Karen Friedman, April Gornik and Eric Fischl, Carole and Alex Rosenberg, Robert Rosenkranz and Alexandra Munroe, Mala and Jeff Sander, and the Madoo Conservancy.

Actor Kyle MacLachlan, Desiree Gruber, Rory Tahari, and designer Elie Tahari at the
Eighth Annual Midsummer Night Drinks cocktail party. Photo by PatricmMcMullan.com

Going around the corner so to speak we headed to the oceanfront home of designer Elie Tahari and his wife Rory for the Eighth Annual Midsummer Night Drinks, a cocktail party and live auction to benefit God's Love We Deliver. Golf carts transported guests up the long pebble drive, with the massive estate of Ira Rennert in the background, to the Tahari home where lanterns hung in trees to light the way to the festive party on the ocean side of the modern home.

The nearly 400 guests, a veritable who's who of designers, had come to support an organization that provides meals and counseling to those living with AIDS, breast cancer, Alzheimer's, and other life-threatening diseases. We spotted Simon Doonan, Martha Stewart, the legendary Arnold Scaasi, Kelly Klein, Debbie Bancroft, Jonathan Adler, Richard Mishaan, Tory Burch, Kyle MacLachlan, Desiree Gruber, Margaret Russell, Pam Florio, Olivia Chantecaille, Vered and Janet Lehr, Denis Basso, David Scott and Stefano Anotonazzi, Melissa Berkelhammer, Barclay Butera, Kyle Blood, Christina Phillips, William Diamond, Gigi Mortimer, Karen Pearl, Michael Sennott, Michael Aram, Tiffany Dubin, and scores more.

Organizers were proud to announce that this had been the most successful event in the Hamptons and far exceeded their expectations. In fact, over $1.3 million has been raised in the past seven years; the team is back in NYC today still counting the receipts and pledges for this year. Taste Caterers did a delicious job serving short ribs, macaroni and cheese bites, and corn chowder while Cavinola's of Sag Harbor brought along three specialty cheeses chosen to complement the evening.

Highlights included the auction where guests bid on front row tickets to the Project Runway presentation (one of the hottest and hardest tickets to get) during Fashion Week, lunch with Blaine Trump and the one and only Joan Rivers at LeCirque, and an exquisite surfboard (one of three that are in existence) designed by Kenny Scharf. Many also opened their hearts and wallets to bid on a supply of meals that ranged from $100 to $2,000 depending on the length of time.

Martha Stewart, Karen Pearl, and Michael Sonnett at the Eighth Annual Midsummer
Night Drinks cocktail party. Photo by PatricmMcMullan.com

We chatted with Kyle MacLachlan when it was time to head off to the next event about his roles on "Desperate Housewives" and "Sex and the City". Did he see the big movie yet with his famous former co-stars? "Not yet," he said with a laugh and jumped into his car.

Southampton Youth Services held their "Field of Dreams" Summer Soiree and silent auction fundraiser. J. Andreassi, a devoted member of the Southampton community and member of SYS during its formative years, was the evening's honoree.

NBC News anchor Chuck Scarborough was with wife Ellen on the scene talking with Southampton Village Mayor Mark Epley. Congressman Tim Bishop posed for a photo with publicist Kim Nichols and Steve Lamson.

J. Andreassi and wife Donna chatted with football great Marty Lyon while Ulrika Parish and Liz Morse decided to bid on some items. Meanwhile, artist Helen Gifford made sure her installation was properly installed so bidders might decide to choose her to install it in their home. Also in the mix were Carole Read Benette with husband John Benette, Bob Zellner, SYS Board of Directors Vice President Jim Rumph, Southampton Town Supervisor Linda Kabot, and Scott Johnson.

J. and Donna Andreassi with Marty Lyon at Field of Dreams Summer Soiree for SYS.
Photo by Sam Rivers

Peconic Community Council, Maureen's Haven, and Hopeline held its celebration of service to the community. The sunshine seemed to bring the smiles and great conversation out of people during the day-long event.

Local businesses set up stations outside the beautiful East End Floral Shop in Speonk, the primary sponsor for the event. We spoke with Sharon Richards the Hopeline Manager, who gave us some much needed insight on the vital organization. The Peconic Community Council has coordinated and been supportive of nearly 300 health and human service organizations that provide assistance to the East End of Long Island. Maureen's Haven Homeless Outreach Program provides the homeless and less fortunate, transportation to a place where they can eat, bathe, and sleep between November and April each year.

The program would not be the success it is without the dedication and cooperation of all groups who donate their time and resources to help make our homeless population's lives more pleasant every night. There are over 1,200 volunteers and local businesses that contribute to the organization. Kate Kidde is one of the largest donors and was recently honored for her efforts this past May. You may even catch a television show called "Making the Human Connection" sometime when you're relaxing at home.

Jody Burchstead, Maria Busch, Sophie Gitto at the fundraiser for Maureen's Haven.
Photo by Angela Williams

Peter Saros, the Director of Peconic Community Council also stopped by to enjoy the music and have a bite to eat. Some of the local merchants had their stations set up to show off their businesses such as, HandfullofWonders.com, an online jewelry gift store, Linmar Images, Inc., and Mary Kay. Ten percent of all sales for the day were donated to the Peconic Community Council and Maureen's Haven.

They said it best when a representative from Maureen's Haven remarked, "It would be nice for this program to go out of business!"

East End Hospice held their Fourth Annual Taste of Shelter Island benefit at the home of Anne W. Boylan. And, we must say, a taste of Shelter Island it most certainly was! Besides being one of the best gourmet cocktail parties around, it had a variety of the tastiest appetizers from the most popular restaurants and caterers of Shelter Island. East End Hospice's very own Priscilla Russin, President and CEO, and benefit committee chairpersons Jean Brechter and Carolyn Denning were in the crowd enjoying the sunshine and mingling.

The evening included a live auction with Shelter Island's very own auctioneer, Dr. Dan Moran. Among the several things on the auction block were cruises, paintings, beautiful Hildreth's furniture, a terra cotta sculpture by renowned artist Peggy Mach, jewelry, and too many spectacular goodies to name.

Crissy Raffin with Prescilla Raffin, President and CEO of East End Hospice at A Taste
of Shelter Island. Photo by Angela Williams

Several local restaurants donated their own specialty dishes for guest tastings. We particularly enjoyed the white bean roasted red pepper hummus from Sweet Tomatoes of Shelter Island. There was so much to try and enjoy that most people came back to certain tables for seconds and hoped no one noticed.

Every Saturday in June, you must take advantage of the opportunity to sip champagne and enjoy hors d'oeuvres with the Hamptons very own landscape designer to the stars, Frederico Azevedo at the Unlimited Earth Care in Bridgehampton. He's celebrating 15 well deserved years of enchanted gardens.

Frederico provides developed landscape architectural services, maintenance, and on-going management for several of the Hamptons residents using garden accessories and incorporating them into a modern style. He's worked with Elizabeth Lear, Roger Cardinal, Zina Glazebrook, and other leading landscape designers and architects. Frederico uses the beautiful work and designs of Dolce & Gabana, Philipe Starck, and Gandia & Blasco to include in his masterpieces.

Currently he's working on a building in Chelsea for Gianfranco Chicco, including two penthouse designs that should be complete by Spring 2009.

As soon as you walk in the showroom of Unlimited Earth Care, you can't help but notice the beautiful modern landscape designs Frederico uses in his unique understandings of architecture and the environment. He has developed more than 100 major landscaping projects in the last 10 years, both commercial and residential. If you're looking for expert advice on any landscape design projects, Frederico Azevedo would be the person to ask.

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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