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John Franco, Chris Wragge And Lonnie Quinn To Play In East Hampton Artists & Writers Softball Game

Nicole Barylski

Ann Ligouri and John Franco at last year's game. (Photo: Lisa Tamburini)

Before the epic Hamptons battle of artists and writers, celebrate the 69th Annual Charity Softball Game during a Pre-Game Cocktail Reception at the William Quigley Art Studio (62 Newtown Lane, East Hampton) on Friday, August 18 from 7 to 9 p.m. This year's East Hampton Artists & Writers Annual Softball Game will support East End Hospice, Eleanor Whitmore Childhood Center, Phoenix House and The Retreat.

"We are so excited about this game that brings our whole community together. The event has a real place in the history of our town which has so many writers and artists!" noted Loretta Davis, Executive Director of The Retreat. "We are working together with our community partners to provide services to all families in the East End and to change lives with these services and programs. It is an honor for The Retreat to be one of the recipient nonprofit agencies to benefit from this family event."

Juliet Papa of 1010 Wins will serve as the kick-off soiree Master of Ceremonies and guests will enjoy a special tasting menu, presented by Swedish Culinary Summer, featuring epicurean treats from Chef Sayan Isaksson, owner of the renowned and Michelin starred Esperanto Restaurant in Stockholm. The evening will also include a live auction and raffle with exciting items like a set tour of ABC's Modern Family and four tickets to a Mets game with lunch and time in the announcer's booth.

Additionally, a specially curated selection of elegantly designed Swedish indoor and outdoor furniture from leading companies Swedese and Nola, many of which will be highlighted in the U.S. for the first time, will be on display. Duxiana beds and the innovative outdoor kitchens by Röshults will also be showcased. The exquisite items will be available in a CharityBuzz auction that supports The Game's charities and Duxiana will donate 10 percent of the price of any bed bought by guests attending Friday evening.

"Eleanor Whitmore Early Childhood Center is delighted to be part of this important event. The funds are used toward the operational budget for the Center," shared Maureen Wikane, Administrative Director of Eleanor Whitmore Early Childhood Center. "Serving over 100 children daily and year round our costs continue to increase. It is our goal to keep the tuition affordable for the working parents of our community. The children are ages 18 months to 5-years-old."

On Saturday, the main event at Herrick Park (67 Newtown Lane, East Hampton) will launch with two new events. A Future Artists & Writers Stars Skills Challenge (throw, bat and run) for children ages 5 to 11 will be held at 10:30 a.m. Artists & Writers Board Trustee Benito Villa and Coach Eddie McCarthy from the Hamptons Baseball Camp will lead the Challenge. The event is limited to 40 children and participants will receive a complimentary t-shirt.

A Home Run Derby, open to two-person teams (pitcher and slugger), will follow at 11:30 a.m., with the title of the inaugural Hamptons Home Run Derby Champs on the line. The entry fee is $100 per team.

69th Annual Charity Softball Game participants will take the field for a little batting practice at 12:30 p.m. and the game is expected to officially commence at 2 p.m.

This year's Writers Team will include special guest John Anthony Franco, a former Major League Baseball left-handed relief pitcher, who played with the Cincinnati Reds, New York Mets, and Houston Astros, while Chris Wragge and Lonnie Quinn from CBS will be joining the Artists Team.

"We are so grateful to benefit from such an amazing community event year after year," added Theresa Murphy of East End Hospice.

Admission to the Pre-Game Cocktail Reception is a suggested donation of $25 and admission to the 69th Annual Charity Softball Game is a suggested donation of $10.

For more information, visit awgame.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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