It’s been a very busy season. And we’ve got the unforgettable experiences (and photo documentation!) to prove it.
Everyone always says that August is the most fashionable time to visit the East End. Apparently there’s something to that, as we’ve already seen our fair share of uber-chic guests who have descended upon our fair villages and hamlets in droves. And we’ve still got a few weeks left to go before Tumbleweed Tuesday.
Especially in August, the plethora of glamorous benefits never fails to bring the bold-faced names. Gabrielle Reece and Laird Hamilton made their annual trek out east for the Paddle and Party for Pink, a hugely successful Breast Cancer Research Foundation fundraiser started by Sag Harbor’s Maria Baum. Also in attendance at this year’s event: East Enders Jimmy Buffet and Katie Lee at the morning paddle at Havens Beach and Sag Harbor’s Candace Bushnell and Tracey Anderson, plus Los Angeles-based host Ryan Seacrest, singer Taylor Dane and even Questlove for the evening party at Fairview on Mecox Bay. The way cool event raised nearly $2 million.
Super Saturday, a fundraiser for the Ovarian Cancer Research Fund Alliance, also brought its fair share of fashionistas to the South Fork. Hosted by East Hampton’s Donna Karan, the annual shopping event welcomed Kelly Ripa, Rachel Zoe and Molly Sims, among others. More than $3 million was raised during this year’s Super sale.
New plugged-in neighbor Robert Downey, Jr. threw himself right into the thick of it, heading straight to one of the Hamptons most interesting and photogenic benefits, the Watermill Center’s annual summer fundraiser. This year’s gathering, “Fly Into The Sun,” was held during the last weekend in July and raised $2 million for its unique programming. Those present at the event, held in tribute this year to Lou Anderson, also included Laurie Anderson and French actress Isabelle Huppert, who were both honored by friend and Watermill Center founder Robert Wilson.
Let’s not forget reading, which we know is fundamental. And it’s also chic, thanks to the folks at the East Hampton Library and their annual Authors Night soiree. This year’s literary charitable affair brought out the big guns, many of them local and all of them connected to the East End in some way or another. Those published and present included Founding Honorary Chair Alec Baldwin and his wife, Hilaria, plus Alan Alda, Ann Brashares, Robert Caro, Dick Cavett, Peter Marino, Jessica Seinfeld, Jean Kennedy Smith and Peter Marino, to name just a few of the 100 authors in attendance.
Of course, we know that life isn’t all Hamptons galas and rosé, though who would really mind if it were? Every once in a while, East Enders stretch their legs and head somewhere else during the summertime. That’s totally acceptable, especially when it involves supporting good friends. Kelly Ripa and Rosanna Scotto did just that at a book bash for author Laurie Gelman (wife of morning TV producer Michael, and a first-time Authors Night participant to boot) in the city recently. There she celebrated her debut, “Class Mom: A Novel,” at Loi Estiatorio earlier this month. That particular launch event packed its own powerful punch, with attendees including Bryant Gumbel, Regis and Joy Philbin, Dan Abrams, Elizabeth Vargas and Richard Kind. Heady stuff.