South O’ the Highway

The Music Plays Again: Jazz for Jennings

In 1996, ABC News Anchor Peter Jennings and his wife, television and documentary producer Kayce Freed Jennings, hosted a jazz brunch at their house in Bridgehampton to support The Bridgehampton Child Care and Recreational Center. The fundraiser became a tradition, but with Mr. Jennings’ passing in 2005, the music stopped.

Ten years later, on Sunday, June 28, the once annual Jazz@Jennings, returned as Jazz for Jennings, a jazz brunch to honor the late newsman. It was held in memory of his work, his legacy, and his unwavering support of the Bridgehampton Child Care & Recreational Center.

Twelve of the world’s greatest jazz musicians, including Christian McBride, Jon Faddis, Eric Reed and Delfeayo Marsalis, performed Sunday afternoon under a tent at the Watermill Center.

Bassist Christian McBride with pianist Eric Reed.
Bassist Christian McBride with pianist Eric Reed. Photo credit: Daniel Gonzalez

Kayce Freed Jennings hosted the event along with co-chairs Diane Sawyer and Ted Koppel. Also serving as honorary co-chairs were Tom Brokaw, Charlie Gibson and Dan Rather.

Ted Dunchick with Tara Koppel, honorary chair, ABC's Ted Koppel and Grace Anne Dorney Koppel.
Ted Dunchick with Tara Koppel, honorary chair, ABC’s Ted Koppel and Grace Anne Dorney Koppel. Photo credit: Daniel Gonzalez

“Peter was dedicated to helping The Center because he appreciated what critical services it delivered to the families in the often over-looked local African-American and Latino communities.” Kayce Freed Jennings said. “Peter always said that jazz musicians are the most generous human beings on earth, we’re humbled that many of the same world-class artists who donated their time and talent all those years ago are coming once again to play for Peter’s memory and for The Center.”

Some notable guests in attendance included editor-in-chief of U.S News & World Report and publisher of the New York Daily News Mort Zuckerman, N.Y. State Assemblyman Fred Thiele, Suffolk County Legislator Jay Schneiderman, WPPB’s Chairman of the Board John Landes, Southampton Town Supervisor Anna Throne-Holst and Southampton Town Board member Bridget Fleming.

WPPB's Chairman of the Board John Landes and Southampton Town Supervisor Anna Throne-Holst.
WPPB’s Chairman of the Board John Landes and Southampton Town Supervisor Anna Throne-Holst. Photo credit: Daniel Gonzalez
Southampton Town Board member Bridget Fleming.
Southampton Town Board member Bridget Fleming. Photo credit: Daniel Gonzalez
N.Y. State Assemblyman Fred Thiele with wife NancyLynn and Suffolk County Legislator Jay Schneiderman.
N.Y. State Assemblyman Fred Thiele with wife NancyLynn and Suffolk County Legislator Jay Schneiderman. Photo credit: Daniel Gonzalez

Guests spent a memorable afternoon, in remembrance of the iconic, philanthropic, music loving Peter Jennings, while bringing needed attention to BHCCRC.

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