Over 350 guests flocked to Water Mill for The Parrish Art Museum’s annual Spring Fling community party, fundraiser, and networking event this past Saturday in the Hamptons. Perhaps it’s cabin fever, or simply the thought that summer is a coming, the annual fete draws a crowd of local business professionals that relish the opportunity to greet old friends, share a cocktail with new ones, and hit the dance floor all while knowing the importance of the event in raising funds for the Parrish’s educational programs.
Spring Fling began in the 1990s and now raises over $100,000 annually for the Parrish education department. In 2013, the Museum directly served 1,500 families, 2,100 students, and more than 1,000 adults. Programs included summer camp, workshops, tours and art studio workshops. Co-Chairs Susan Davis and Nancy Hardy work tirelessly to organize everything from the invitations to the acquisition of gifts for the silent auction.
“The Parrish Art Museum has always been an integral part of our East End community and Spring Fling specifically funds programs for children,” event co-chair Nancy Hardy told Hamptons.com. “All of our kids have grown up coming to the museum on school field trips and have participated in the annual Student Art Exhibition, but the Parrish offers programs and events for all children—from full-time residents to summer visitors.”
This year the event planners created an ingenious Art Detective Scavenger Hunt designed to spotlight many of the wonderful art works that comprise the Museum’s permanent collection. Guests, pairing off or joining small teams to search out the correct answers to about a dozen questions, had great fun and a lovely introduction to some of the Museum’s treasures.
Among the revelers hunting through the collection were the Museum’s Executive Director Terrie Sultan and Christopher French, curator Alicia Longwell, Tim Davis, Laura Wayne and John Wynne with daughter Olivia, Sylvia Hemingway, Ron Burkhardt, Jeanine Edington, Regina Kravitz, Caroline Lieberman, Davis Gaffga, Maryanne Horwath and Michael Shaheen, Gayle Tudisco and Guy Tudisco, Dede Gotthelf Moan, Kevin Maple, Frankie de la Barre, Tripoli Patterson and Jackie McKay, Gary Lawrance, and Zita Davisson.
As Spring Fling is one extended cocktail party, the talented chefs from Gloria’s Fine Foods and Catering of Westhampton Beach kept their staff circulating throughout the halls with such delectable hors d’oeuvres as teeny BLT canapés, mini crab cakes, filet of beef on mini brioche, seared tune, pulled pork sliders and more. Buffet tables were scattered throughout the event making it easy for dancers to re-fuel. Niche Import Co. and their genial bartenders kept the wines and bubbly flowing.
A big hit of the evening was a sparkling rose that simply announced summer is right around the corner. Alpha Noble Vodka had their expert team of mixologists shaking up a signature cocktail “A Fish Out of Water Martini” for the evening that everyone pronounced “delish.”
A highlight of the event is always the Silent Auction and this year was no exception as guests had a dazzling array of luxury goods, one-of-kind experiences and service packages donated by the East End business and professional community to bid on. Hair, beauty and spa treatments from the top specialists in town such as Kevin Maple Salon, La Carezza, Naturopathica Spa, John Dillon Salon, Gil Ferrer Salon were hot items as were gift certificates from scores of local restaurants, shops and businesses including Little Red, The American Hotel, Wolffer Estates, Martha Clara Vineyards, J. McLaughlin, Hotel Indigo East End, and Vines & Branches. One of a kind experiences included impossible to get reservations at Rao’s in New York – deemed priceless, VIP tent passes to the 2014 Hampton Classic Horse Show, passes to the Hamptons Take 2 Documentary Film Festival, a week’s stay in Palm Beach and VIP tickets with “Live with Kelly & Michael.” Luxury goods from the likes of Baccarat, Brahmin, Michael Kors, Hermes, Donna Karan, Worth New York, and Eric Javits were also much in demand by the savvy style setters.
One of the area’s top local bands, Noiz, kept the dance floor packed throughout the evening with their sets that ranged from rock to reggae to R & B. While this being Southampton there was no “twerking” but plenty of sexy moves on the dance floor. Niche Import Co., Alpha Noble Vodka, Hamptons H2O, and Southampton Publick House generously donated the refreshments.
The Parrish Art Museum’s programs are made possible, in part, by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature, and the property taxpayers from the Southampton School District and the Tuckahoe Common School District.