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(Photo courtesy Peter Ambrose)

Slip into your best red outfit and hit up this year’s Love Bites bonanza on Saturday, March 4th to take a bite out of cancer’s sway in our lives. 

Once again, the annual it-takes-a-village fundraiser will be held at East Hampton’s family-friendly entertainment hub, The Clubhouse, benefitting the not-for-profit Katy’s Courage. 

Created over two decades ago by chef Peter Ambrose and Linda Shapiro as a vehicle to bring Hamptonites together for a well-worthy cause during the winter months, Love Bites is a foodie’s dream. 

(Photo courtesy of Peter Ambrose)

“Since I’m in the industry and have lots of chef friends, we usually are able to gather 15 to 25 restaurants, caterers and private chefs for this,” says Ambrose. “It’s all laid out on a six-foot table featuring one bite or specialty dish from each of them. And the food is exceptionally good! We don’t promote it as a competition, but it turns out to be friendly competition!”  

Over the years, not-for-profits like the Ellen Hermanson Foundation and Heart of the Hamptons have been the recipients of Love Bites love, but for the past seven or eight, says Ambrose, Katy’s Courage has been the focus, as much for the friendship he holds with Katy’s parents, Sag Harbor residents Jim Stewart and Brigid Collins, as for the sincere desire to eradicate children’s cancer.  

Founded in 2012 by Stewart and Collins, Katy’s Courage honors the memory of Katy Stewart, who succumbed to a rare form of liver cancer at the tender age of 12. Today, Katy’s Courage raises funds through multiple annual events to benefit pediatric cancer research, as well as helping kids and their families move through the grieving process through art, dance and music via Katy’s Kids at the Children’s Museum of the East End, as well as provide four-year college scholarships for Pierson high school seniors displaying the same strength and innate kindness that was the hallmark of Katy’s short but bright life.  

(Photo courtesy of Peter Ambrose)

This year may well break some fundraising records for Katy’s Courage, as the line-up of fab food is well-worth the $100 price of admission ($150 per couple, so bring a bestie), with dishes from Ambrose and the Clubhouse, of course, as well as Montauk’s much-anticipated Maverick’s, the Art of Eating, Bell and Anchor, Union Sushi and Steak, Grace and Grit, the Golden Pear, Union Burger Bar, Jerri’s Cakes, Dreeson’s Donuts, among others.

Speaking of the latter, Christina and Rudy DiSanti, owners of Dreeson’s Catering, will be the night’s honorees for all their good work with East Hampton Meals on Wheels, among other local charities. “They sign up for every event I do,” says Ambrose of the Dreeson’s community spirit. 

There’s more than just eating at Love Bites—you can dance the night away to the spinning of DJ Mike Variale from East End Entertainment, sip on specialty drinks made just for the evening and—most importantly—bid on the silent auction or sign up for the annual golf raffle to help fund the cause. The silent auction is a delicious who’s who of East End culinary culture, with gift certificates up for grabs from Nick and Toni’s, Pig Beach, Fresno, the American Hotel, Page at 63 Main and a multitude of others. The annual golf raffle will have limited 150 tickets available at $100 each to try your luck at winning the chance to play and put on some of the greatest greens around, including the Maidstone, the Bridge, Westhampton, Pine Hollow, East Hampton Golf Club, Winged Foot, Gardiners Bay and many more. 

For more information and tickets, click here.