Here He Comes, Mr. Amagansett

Nick Kraus emerged the winner of the third annual Mr. Amagansett
2012 Mr.Amagansett, Nick Kraus

    Nick Kraus emerged the winner of the third annual Mr. Amagansett contest held on Saturday to benefit the Donald T. Sharkey Community Memorial Fund. As the manager of the Stephen Talkhouse, where the event was held, it would seem to some that this was an easy win, but his fiercest competitor was his boss, Peter Honerkamp.
    Both contestants created short films to campaign for the title, but Mr. Kraus’s taped endorsement from President Bill Clinton and Secretary of State Hillary Clinton probably helped push him to the top, he said. His film chronicled his depression after failing to win the contest the previous two years, and showed him seeking and following advice from professionals and celebrities on how to pull through.
    Mr. Honerkamp’s short had his face and voice imposed into classic films, such as “The Godfather,” “Braveheart,” and “Casablanca”: “of all the gin joints . . . she walked into mine.” Making the case for the crown, he pitched the fact that he keeps many local bars in business with his drinking problem.
    The best part of winning, Mr. Kraus said Tuesday, “was beating Peter.”
    Town and “Village People” were among the contestants. One, Gordon Ryan, introduced as the attorney who will “always get you off,” spoke in clever rhyming lyrics of memories with his friend, Mr. Sharkey.
    Upon accepting his robe, crown, and clam rake scepter, Mr. Kraus reminded the crowd why he had put forth so much effort. “It’s about Don,” he said, with whom he said he shared “some of the best times [he] can’t remember.”
    The fund provides scholarships to local students, fire departments, and the Wounded Warrior Project in Mr. Sharkey’s memory. Mr. Sharkey was East Hampton Town’s chief building inspector. He died in July 2009. Those who knew him, such as Eric Slocum and Bob Schaeffer, said he was well known for his generous contributions to the community, and for his sense of humor.
    Mr. Honerkamp said he could see “Don with a twinkle in his eye that we are remembering him, but more because we are doing something for the community in his name.”   


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