Raptor handler and trainer Nick Marzano's padded glove served as a perch for Sonia the red-tailed hawk, who was spreading her wings broadly, as if on cue, for photos with tony guests. “It’s called unsettling her perch,” explained Marzano, tipping his wrist forward slightly as the raptor unfurled its wings to catch air and stability. “She’s a poser.”
Posing on other arms were Kayala the great horned owl and Cutie Pie the screeching owl, likely the source of a piercing peep in the background. Beth Ostrosky, in a long black dress and matching black straw hat, and Howard Stern, also in black, arrived at the valet out front, just before my car. They laughed when I asked if anything was going on with animals at their Southampton home. “Tell him the big news!” Ostrosky exhorted Stern.
“We have adopted six foster cats, little kittens,” Stern told Dispatches. “The mother passed away,” continued Ostrosky. “They were in a municipal shelter I was visiting, so I grabbed them and brought them home. Howard talked about them on air, and now we have homes for them.”
"Too many homes,” said Stern. “And Beth is going to hand deliver all of them.”
“So I’ll get another litter when they leave,” said Ostrosky. “Howard names them.”
Stern listed the names: “Tarzan, Ben and Jerry, Ophelia.”
“And Brenda Star,” added Ostrosky.
For the occasion, Swedish culinary star chef Jonas Dahlbom, of the Swedish Culinary Series, was creating complicated Swedish delicacies in the bottom of plastic cups—tantamount to building a ship in a bottle.
Also spotted: Marcy and Michael Warren, Daphne Hoge, savvy top Manhattan real estate lawyer Andrew Levine, and hosts Kim Renk Dryer, Sharon Kerr, Jane Hansen, and Howard Lorber. In a move worthy of Gatsby, the Scarboroughs had generously loaned the dreamy estate but were unable to attend; Mr. Scarborough, the legendary WNBC newscaster, is said to have been under the weather.
But the animals, panoramic views of Lake Agawam, and the chauffeured golf cart drive up—past a sunken tennis court, faced by a pillared colonnade—provided wow factor.