Hampton Habitués

Good News Gossip About Our Notable Friends And Neighbors
By Dawn Watson - September 21, 2018

Wow, that was one fast summer!

We were still recovering from the East Hampton Library’s annual Authors Night benefit when the Hampton Classic galloped straight ahead and reminded us that the high season had officially come to a close. And now, it’s already red carpet time for the Hamptons International Film Festival. Time certainly does fly.

First things first: Authors Night. Always a thrill; this year was even more special as we got to meet Malcolm Nance. Far from the stuffed shirt one might assume a person of his stature and credentials might be, this former intelligence and foreign policy analyst was quite chatty and gregarious. In a night filled with many special moments, our favorite part of the evening was introducing the author and media commentator to actor and Authors Night Founding Honorary Chair Alec Baldwin—whose attention he managed to catch after showing a snapshot of himself dining with Martin Sheen and Jane Fonda at a dinner party in Los Angeles a few days prior.

Fortunate enough to be on the authors’ selection committee again, this year we were doubly lucky to be the talent wrangler for our dear friend Bridget LeRoy, who subbed in for inimitable Bonnie Grice as the on-site interviewer for 88.3 WPPB. So, in addition to the usual suspects that we’ve been thrilled to meet and greet over the years, it was a real honor to spend some additional one-on-one time with even more heavy hitters, such as Ndaba Mandela (grandson of Nelson), Michael Isikoff and Lee Child.

On a side note, we just gotta mention how tickled we were that the lovely Durell Godfrey snapped a quick shot of us, with me pointing him to the radio interview dais. “Oh my God, you told Jack Reacher what direction to take,” Durell wrote of the exchange. Love it!

Continuing the theme of direction, congratulations to seven-time Emmy Award-winner actor, director, screenwriter, author and super nice guy Alan Alda, who is this year’s recipient of The Dick Cavett Artistic Champion Award at the 26th annual Hamptons International Film Festival. The Water Mill resident, also an Academy Award nominee and Golden Globe winner, has made a lasting impression with the multitude of his theatrical talents and his commitment to scientific study and the environment.

“Alan Alda is one of those now rare actors who in his career continues to distinguish himself on Broadway, in films and on television,” said HIFF Co-Chairman Alec Baldwin. “Of course, most people remember Alda for his starring role in the seminal TV series M*A*S*H, but Alda is also great in the movies and on stage.”

Gotta give a couple of shoutouts to two other South Forkers who have recently been in the spotlight for doing terrific things for the greater good. Sagaponack’s Jimmy Fallon picked up a thousand-dollar-plus dinner tab for a handful of strangers at Il Mulino in Wainscott. Niiiice. And Amagansett’s Paul McCartney gave stunned rush-hour commuters a free concert at Grand Central. That’s a million times better than a “Ticket to Ride.”

There are a few more notables who might not yet call the Hamptons home but who have been seen out and about of late, and doing their part for charitable endeavors on more than one occasion. We’re always appreciative of good works, especially when they draw attention to this beautiful place and those of us fortunate enough to live here.

Actor Adrian Grenier revisited The Surf Lodge in Montauk not too long ago in order to raise money for his Lonely Whale charity, which supports clean oceans. Bonus: he also pitched in and picked up trash at a beach clean-up in Ditch Plains. No “Entourage” needed, thank you very much.

Singer Michael Bolton returned out east and performed “An Intimate Evening Under the Stars.” Produced by Larry Scott of Lawrence Scott events, the Sagaponack concert benefited the crooner’s namesake charities. And John Fogarty, Creedence Clearwater Revival co-founder, wowed the crowd at the Parrish Art Museum as he did his part to raise money at the 19th annual Prostate Cancer Foundation Gala.

Even former British Prime Minister Tony Blair couldn’t resist the lure of the Hamptons in high season. Spotted at Babette’s in East Hampton, it’s been rumored that he came a calling in order to raise money for his non-profit, the Tony Blair Institute for Global Change, which “aims to help make globalization work for the many, not the few.” We sure like the sound of that.

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