The best of the Hamptons 2017: Parties, restaurant trends, events, more

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Star-studded parties, trendy restaurants, haute shopping — summer in the Hamptons brings all that and more. Whether you’re daytripping to the South Fork or staying for a long weekend, here’s a rundown of things to do.

Fly Into the Sun event

The Watermill Center (839 Water Mill Towd Rd.,
(Credit: Getty Images for FIJI Water/Bryan Bedder)

The Watermill Center (839 Water Mill Towd Rd., Water Mill) is holding "Fly Into the Sun," its 24th annual summer benefit and auction 6 p.m. Saturday, July 29. Honoring celebrated artist Laurie Anderson (pictured) and actress Isabelle Huppert, the program also will pay tribute to late musician Lou Reed in a multimedia presentation. Tickets start at $650; purchase tickets by calling 212-253-7484, ext. 115, or at watermillcenter.org.

Christmas in July

Beach Bar (58 Foster Ave., Hampton Bays) does
(Credit: Scott Spanburgh)

Beach Bar (58 Foster Ave., Hampton Bays) does "Christmas in July" at 8 p.m. Friday, July 28, at which Santa will appear, and guests are encouraged to dress in festive holiday attire; DJ Doug spins. Admission is $10 (631-723-3100, beachbarhamptons.com).

After-dinner scene

Mainly an upscale restaurant focused on Greek food,
(Credit: Ian J. Stark)

Mainly an upscale restaurant focused on Greek food, Calissa (1020 Montauk Hwy., Water Mill) also features DJs and live music after 9 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays. Reservations aren't required, and there's no guest list (but reserve to guarantee an outdoor spot), but unlike some of its Hamptons contemporaries, you won't see a lot of overt advertising, so call ahead to see who's spinning or playing (631-500-9292, calissahamptons.com).

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"Assisted Loving"

Actors Richard Kind (pictured) and Mercedes Ruehl will
(Credit: Richard Brown)

Actors Richard Kind (pictured) and Mercedes Ruehl will take part in a staged reading of the book "Assisted Loving: True Tales of Double Dating With My Dad" from author Bob Morris at 8 p.m. Friday, July 28, at Guild Hall (158 Main St., East Hampton). Tickets are $30-$50; purchase online at guildhall.org, call the Guild Hall box office at 631-324-4050.

Super shopping

The Ovarian Cancer Research Fund Alliance once again
(Credit: SocietyAllure.com/Rob Rich)

The Ovarian Cancer Research Fund Alliance once again holds its "Super Saturday" luxury "garage sale" at Nova's Ark Project (30 Millstone Rd., Water Mill) 1-6 p.m. Saturday, July 29. To be hosted by ABC Networks morning personality Kelly Ripa (pictured), supermodel Molly Sims, fashion icon Donna Karan, entrepreneur (and Donna's daughter) Gabby Karan de Felice and designer Rachel Zoe, this shopping event will feature items for sale by dozens of high-end clothiers and accessory companies, as well as stylists and a kids carnival. Tickets start at $450, $150 for children ages 5-16; purchase online at ocrfa.org, call 212-268-1002 for more information.

'Housewives' lunch

Lawrence High School graduate and original cast-member of
(Credit: Stacy O’Nell / SO Photography)

Lawrence High School graduate and original cast-member of the Bravo channel program "Real Housewives of New York City" Jill Zarin (pictured here with husband Bobby) is throwing her annual charity luncheon noon-5 p.m. Saturday, July 29, at a private residence in Southampton. Benefiting thyroid cancer research, expected guests are to include some of the other stars of the "Housewives" franchise, as well as several faces from the celebrity Hamptons crowd. Tickets start at $1,000; visit brandswaycreative.com for more information, and to purchase visit eventbrite.com. Call the organizers at 212-966-7900.

James Beard chef event

(Credit: SocietyAllure.com/Rob Rich)

"Chefs & Champagne," the annual summer tasting party from the nonprofit culinary organization James Beard Foundation takes place 6-8:30 p.m. Saturday, July 29, at Wolffer Estate Vineyard (139 Sagg Rd., Sagaponack), featuring food prepared by a roster of more than 40 notable chefs, including James Ahearn (Verde Wine Bar: 450 Commack Rd., Deer Park), Philippe Corbet (Lulu Kitchen & Bar: 126 Main St., Sag Harbor) and Dominic Rice (Calissa: 1020 Montauk Hwy., Water Mill), while honoring restaurateur and celebrity chef Marcus Samuelsson (pictured). Admission starts at $275; purchase online at jamesbeard.org or call 212-675-4984 for more information.

Sunset in Sag Harbor

Ever catch the end of the day on
(Credit: Baron's Cove)

Ever catch the end of the day on the water in Sag Harbor? The hamlet's legendary sunset views are reason enough, but for an extra incentive, Baron's Cove (31 W. Water St.) hosts its "Sunsets and Sangria" special from 4 p.m.-close Sundays, featuring live Latin jazz fusion music from the Alfredo Europa Band (5-8 p.m.) and its signature Rose Sangria for $55 a pitcher (631-725-2101, baronscove.com).

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Gene Simmons

The
(Credit: Invision/Paul A. Hebert)

The "Bridgehampton Benefit" gala happens 6-11 p.m. Saturday, July 29, at Southampton Arts Center (25 Jobs Lane, Southampton). Benefiting The Starkey Hearing Foundation and the nonprofit Matter health access organization, scheduled guests include Bethpage native Sal "The Voice" Valentinetti and member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame-inducted band KISS Gene Simmons (pictured). Tickets start at $250; purchase online at bridgehamptonbenefit.com, call 631-353-3428 for more information.

E.M.P. Summer House

The E.M.P. Summer House (341 Pantigo Rd., East
(Credit: Ian J. Stark)

The E.M.P. Summer House (341 Pantigo Rd., East Hampton) is primarily a fine dining restaurant; a pop-up from the people who run the lauded Eleven Madison Park in Manhattan. However, aside from its menu, this is also a spot good for drinks as it features a back bar open to the public, and signature cocktails are available. Guests can also jump in on backyard lawn games (ping-pong, corn hole, petanque) or settle into beach chairs and relax; last call on weekends is generally midnight. (212-889-0905, empsummerhouse.com, info@empsummerhouse.com)

Weekly mambo nights

Mambo Loco is among the bands performing for
(Credit: Ian J. Stark)

Mambo Loco is among the bands performing for the weekly mambo night at the Meschutt Beach Hut at Meschutt Beach County Park, 1 Canal Rd., Hampton Bays. The event starts  at 6 p.m. Wednesdays. Admission is free; parking is free after 5 p.m.. The sunset views are outstanding. (631-728-2988, thebeachhuts.com)

Paint at the Pollock-Krasner House

Art and history come together at a tour
(Credit: Karyn Mannix)

Art and history come together at a tour and workshop held at the Pollock-Krasner House (830 Springs Fireplace Rd., East Hampton) twice weekly 10 a.m.-11:30 a.m. Thursdays and Fridays (until Sept. 1, and a final class on Friday, Sept. 8). Each session opens with a guided tour of the home of artists Jackson Pollock and Lee Krasner, followed by a painting session with a canvas to keep. Tickets are $40; 631-329-2811, mannixartstudio@gmail.com, mannix.studio.

Swanky candy shop

Sugarfina, an upscale candy boutique, has opened a
(Credit: Sugarfina)

Sugarfina, an upscale candy boutique, has opened a pop-up boutique in Southampton with a very specific niche: rose wine-infused gummy bears. The pale pink sweets come in several varieties, including an exclusive-to-the-Hamptons version flecked with edible 24-karat gold ($24 small cube, pictured). Natch, the candy is not alcoholic. The chic space has made-to-order bento candy boxes that can be stashed with chocolates, caramels, gummies and jellies (68 Main St.; 631-850-3038, sugarfina.com).

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Below the BARN at SoulCycle Bridgehampton

The Below the BARN summer pop-up at SoulCycle
(Credit: Adriel Reboh)

The Below the BARN summer pop-up at SoulCycle Bridgehampton (264 Butter Lane, Bridgehampton) is scheduled to feature free wellness programming until Sept. 4, including classes and tutorials, as well as live entertainment 4 p.m.-6 p.m. Fridays. Fitness instructor Jaycee Gossett will also hold four Saturday editions of "The Class by Taryn Toomey" throughout the summer;advance reservations and to-be-announced entrance fee will be required (631-537-3630, belowthebarn.splashthat.com).

New seafood spot

Flagship has docked in Montauk. The new restaurant,
(Credit: Flagship)

Flagship has docked in Montauk. The new restaurant, specializing in seafood, small plates and cocktails, is the latest harbor-side spot on West Lake Drive. It's co-owned by the father-son team of Eric and Adam Miller, veterans of Bay Kitchen Bar in East Hampton. Eric Miller is executive chef, as he is at Bay Kitchen. Adam Miller is mixologist and designer. Expect main dishes in the $22-$38 range; small plates, $18-$17; crudo, $20-$22; and salads, $16-$18. Specialty cocktails are $14. Flagship is open every day from noon to 2 a.m. Typical fare includes "torched" fatty bass crudo; grilled octopus; local fluke and charred squid; spicy tuna tartare; panko-crusted crabcakes; smoked pork ribs; and dishes such as seared dayboat scallops, panko-crusted Montauk fluke, fisherman's stew with lobster, lobster spring roll and sirloin steak (631-668-8260, flagshipmontauk.com).  

Dig in to a sand castle contest

For families interested in sun, fun and creativity,
(Credit: Gordon M. Grant)

For families interested in sun, fun and creativity, there's a sand castle contest held Thursdays through Aug. 31 at Montauk's Hither Hills State Park. Sculptors can use sand, water and any other natural materials native to the beach. Register at 9:30 a.m., then dig in! Prizes awarded in several categories. ADMISSION Free to campers, $10 non-campers INFO 631-668-2554, nysparks.com

New artisanal bread bakery

One of the hottest food spots in the
(Credit: Newsday/Erica Marcus)

One of the hottest food spots in the Hamptons this summer doesn't even have seats. After baking artisanal bread out of a shared kitchen in Southampton for three years, Carissa Waechter has opened a retail bakery in East Hampton where she has expanded her line to include pies, cakes and sandwiches. The sleek shop -- located in the parking area behind Newtown Lane -- is a study in white and stainless, the better to highlight the golden brown of the baguettes, the burnt umber of the rustic loaves, the rich chestnut of the croissants and the speckled seeds of the pickle ryes (made with pureed pickles and juice). The kitchen is in full view of the sales area, which means that, for the first time, Waechter can watch her customers enjoy her wares. "I already get to bake all day," she said. "Meeting my customers face to face just makes it better." Carissa's The Bakery is at 68 Newtown Lane, East Hampton;   csbreads@gmail.com   

Country Night at The Springs Tavern

The Springs Tavern (15 Fort Pond Blvd., East
(Credit: Daniel Gonzalez)

The Springs Tavern (15 Fort Pond Blvd., East Hampton) hosts a weekly country night starting at 8 p.m. Tuesdays. The shindig will start with an hourlong line dance class, followed by live music by resident band Spaghetti Westerners (pictured) at 9 p.m. (631-527-7800, thespringstavern.com).

Dan Bailey Tribe

With a sound that blends reggae, soul and
(Credit: Carlos Sanchez)

With a sound that blends reggae, soul and funk, the Hamptons-based Dan Bailey Tribe (danbaileytribe.com) has been a summer standard for several seasons, playing venues all over the East End. The act now has a set residency at Miss Chloe (44 Three Mile Harbor Rd., East Hampton) 10 p.m.-midnight Thursdays. No cover for entry, drink specials and Bailey also invites attendees to bring drums in order to jam during percussion breaks (misschloehamptons.com; call 917-826-3662 for reservations, email MissChloeHamptons@gmail.com for information).

Fantasy brunch

TBar at Kozu in Southampton is doing a
(Credit: Ian J. Stark)

TBar at Kozu in Southampton is doing a brunch bash noon-6 p.m. Saturdays that combines dining with club-style entertainment. Guests can sit in the main room or outdoors and choose from a menu that spans from an Angus burger and fries to more morning-minded options such as eggs Benedict and French toast. The venue also sports a back space with a dance floor, and a DJ will be on hand to spin dance and hip-hop (the music can be heard throughout Kozu). Bottle service is available, and musicians, dancers and other live entertainers will provide short performance breaks to the beat. Reservations are recommended but not necessary (631-619-6660).

Free music shows at Montauk Yacht Club

The Montauk Yacht Club presents free live music every
(Credit: Crios Valentino)

The Montauk Yacht Club presents free live music every weekend throughout the summer, with all performances open to the public. Sessions are scheduled 6-9 p.m. Fridays and 12:30-4:30 p.m Saturdays. (Gissel Garcia, pictured, played with her band on Saturday, June 3) with added shows on some Sundays, holidays and other dates (631-668-3100, montaukyachtclub.com). 

Beach Bar, Season 25

A survivor from the days when Hampton Bays
(Credit: Daniel Brennan)

A survivor from the days when Hampton Bays held several summer nightspots from which to choose, Beach Bar (58 Foster Ave.; 631-723-3100) continues to host busy weekend parties, returning for its 25th season. A casual hangout known for its friendly bar staff, outdoor deck and party beats (delivered by scene veteran DJ Doug), it's open Fridays as the Beach Bar, but Saturdays the venue hosts the "Drift Inn" shindig (an affair that moved to this location following the demise of its former home, the now-defunct Neptune Beach Club). Doors open at 9 p.m.; admission is $10-$20. For more information, visit beachbarhamptons.com.

Hamptons Gift Bag

The annual Madison & Mulholland, Inc. Hampton Gift
(Credit: Luis Ernesto Santana)

The annual Madison & Mulholland, Inc. Hampton Gift Bag program is once again underway. It contains a minimum of seven books (not all bags contain the same books), a notepad and beauty/ grooming items, among other inclusions. Bags are given gratis to guests of Southampton Inn (91 Hill St., Southampton; 631-283-6500, southamptoninn.com), Hotel Indigo (1830 W. Main St., Riverhead; 631-369-2200, indigoeastend.com) and Baron's Cove (31 W. Water St., Sag Harbor; 844-227-6672, baronscove.com), as well as to visitors to the Lucille Khornak Gallery (2400 Montauk Hwy., Bridgehampton; 631-613-6000, lucillekhornakgallery.com), but to reserve a bag (for a $9.59 reservation fee), visit hamptongiftbag.com (bags can be shipped to you for an additional $32.99). Reservations will close on Tuesday, June 28.

Montauk Beach House (55 S. Elmwood Ave., Montauk;
(Credit: Andy Egelhoff)

Montauk Beach House (55 S. Elmwood Ave., Montauk; 631-668-2112) is once again bringing back its daytime gatherings that go on throughout Saturdays and Sundays, open as usual to the general public. However, with the addition of the Memorial Day holiday, the hospitality spot is adding a Monday event featuring DJ (and native Long Islander) Kristine Barrilli from noon-5 p.m. Born in Merrick, she's best known for her work at numerous NYC clubs and her deep musical knowledge, so expect a session from Barrilli to offer quality beats. Admission is free, but all must RSVP at thembh.com in advance to attend.

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