Tag Archive | "The American Hotel"

In Levine’s Memory: Slow Food, Education & Organic Farming Celebrated

Tags: , , , , , , , ,


web-Josh-Levine

By Amy Patton

An upcoming celebration of locally cultivated food, sustainable farming and micro-agriculture will mingle next month with the memory of a North Haven man who held a passion for all these things.

The American Hotel, in partnership with the Joshua Levine Memorial Foundation, will host a dinner and pre-dinner cocktail party Sunday, March 24 to raise funds in part for the Edible School Garden Group and the three “master” gardeners chosen to help local school districts cultivate and expand their school gardens.

The foundation is guided by Myron and Susan Levine, of Sag Harbor, who lost their son Josh in 2010 when he was fatally injured in an accident while working at Quail Hill Farm in Amagansett.

Josh, who was 35 years old when he died, left behind two small children and his wife, Ann.

Myron Levine said the overwhelming support for his family from the community after the tragic accident spurred him to find a way to raise funds to better the community. Since Josh was so passionate about organic farming and its benefits, said Myron, the family chose to promote what would most significantly preserve his son’s memory.

Although Josh began his career as a real estate developer in Manhattan, his father said after spending many summers on the East End, his son found a calling in farming and in 2008 he became a volunteer at the Peconic Land Trust’s Quail Hill Farm where he served as a summer apprentice on the Amagansett acreage.

“He was such a gentle man,” said Myron. “He was so drawn by what he saw out here, the simplicity, the purity. He saw the value of keeping local agriculture alive.”

Also to benefit from March’s event is Slow Food East End (SFEE), an organization that, as one of its charitable projects, works with local schools to teach children about the value of homegrown produce. Last year, the group helped several school districts like Greenport and the Hayground School install greenhouses and small gardens so that kids could learn hands-on the benefits of small-scale organic farming.

“Slow food is obviously the opposite of fast food,” said Mary Morgan, the former director of SFEE, who recently stepped down from the organization to head another related charity. “Our goal is for local children to understand that not all they eat must come out of packages at the supermarket.”

The schools that currently benefit from the Edible School Garden program, said Morgan, which this year number 20 throughout the North and South Forks, “are in various stages of working with the students on building and maintaining food gardens.” Morgan noted some of the kids’ homegrown efforts have even led to some of the produce being sold at area farmer’s markets or used in cafeterias. The master gardeners, who are hired with funds garnered from the now-yearly Joshua Levine Memorial Foundation event, work in conjunction with teachers, administrators and students towards the SFEE’s goal.

“For children to understand where their food comes from is so important,” said Peconic Land Trust president John v H. Halsey, whose organization works, in part, to promote the use of local land for farming and allocates funding to make that land more affordable for farmers. “The Slow Food East End movement and the Edible Garden School program both help to instill a conservation ethic in these kids. We’re very supportive of fundraisers like this that help to promote the use of food production farmland and assure that such a valuable legacy stays with us out here.”

The American Hotel’s Joshua Levine Memorial Foundation dinner/fundraiser is currently sold out; However, there are still tickets available for the pre-dinner cocktail party which will be held at Bay Street Theater from 5 to 7 p.m. on March 24, featuring wine, hors d’oeuvres and music. A donation of $75 will secure a place at the event and reservations can be made at www.joshualevinefoundation.org.

 

Building a Dream at The American Hotel

Tags: , , , ,


This week, The American Hotel in Sag Harbor announced East End Hospice (EEH) will be the beneficiary of “Dinner for a Cause,” a nightly prix fixe from January 4 to March 24. The 11 week collaboration will commence with a cocktail party on Friday, January 4 from 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. to present “Building the Dream,” the campaign for an East End Hospice Inpatient Facility, and will culminate with a concert by Judy Carmichael on March 24.

Prompting the partnership is the relationship between East End Hospice and Ted Conklin, the owner of The American Hotel. The Conklin family has long supported the community organization and recently pledged to support “Building the Dream” for the EEH Inpatient Facility, which will be built in Quiogue in the spring of 2013.

From January through March, patrons of the renowned restaurant will have the opportunity to support EEH with their purchase of a $40 nightly prix fixe menu. For each meal purchased, The American Hotel will donate $10 to EEH’s “Building the Dream” campaign.

On January 4, Conklin will host a cocktail fundraiser from 6 to 8 p.m. with special guests architect Roger Ferris of Roger Ferris + Partners LLC, EEH President and CEO Priscilla Ruffin and the EEH Board to learn more about the facility, which will provide accessible, quality hospice care on the East End, meet the architect and view building plans.

“Building the Dream” has raised over $5.4 million of its $10 million goal.

Tickets are $50 each and can be purchased at the door or by calling Maggie Goldfarb at EEH at 288-7080.

Business Briefs: Saunders & Associates Adds Sag Harbor Love to the Mix

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , ,


Saunders & Associates Real Estate Adds Sag Harbor’s Love to the Mix

Saunders & Associates (www.hamptonsrealestate.com.), a Hamptons-based real estate firm, announced on October 4 that Noel Love has joined the firm.

A real estate agent with nearly 20 years of experience, Love joins Saunders & Associates as a Licensed Real Estate Salesperson and will work out of the firm’s Southampton office.

A resident of Sag Harbor, Love comes to Saunders from Brown Harris Stevens, where he was involved in more than $50 million in real estate transactions.

Love began his professional career in the music industry at Motown Records in 1965, where he served as New York Promotion Director and sought airtime on New York radio stations for such Motown legends as The Supremes, Temptations, Marvin Gaye, Smokey Robinson & The Miracles and Stevie Wonder.

From Motown, he moved to Polydor Records and took on the role of vice president of promotion. He eventually began his own independent national promotion company, Love-Rosen Promotions, which was awarded the 1975 Independent Promotion Company of the year by Billboard magazine.

In 1993, Love moved to the Hamptons and in 1998 was recruited by the president of Brown Harris Stevens of the Hamptons. Love has remained with that company until earlier this month.

Love, a Sag Harbor resident, lives on Noyac Bay.

The number of brokers at Saunders has now reached 96. Recent hires include entrepreneur and businessman Jon Guren, real estate developer, investor and attorney Alan Schnurman, Sandra Woodward Pullman, Krae Van Sickle, Lylla Carter, and Chris Coleman from The Corcoran Group; as well as Vincent Horcasitas who worked at Prudential Douglas Elliman.

SagTown Coffee Offers Main Street Delivery

SagTown (www.sagtowncoffee) at 78 Main Street in Sag Harbor in the Shopping Cove has started Main Street, Sag Harbor coffee delivery.

According to SagTown barista Julia Celano, the coffee company began offering the service two weeks ago. No matter now big or small (think one cup of regular Joe), SagTown will delivery the coffee to your place of business for a small $1 delivery charge.

According to Celano, the service started as a spur of the moment idea and has been a roaring success. The business even created to-go menus showcasing their beverages, from a traditional latte or espresso to speciality coffees like their salted caramel latte, chocolate peanut butter latte, Chai tea latte, caramel macchiato, and for the kids options like Ghirardelli hot chocolate, steamed milk and freshly squeezed lemonade.

For more information or to place your order, call 725-TOWN (8696).

Bridge Bancorp Announced Third Quarter Dividend

Bridge Bancorp, Inc., the holding company for The Bridgehampton National Bank (www.bridgenb.com), announced the declaration of a quarterly cash dividend of $0.23 per share. The dividend will be payable on October 20, 2012 to shareholders of record as of October 17, 2012.

According to a press release issued on October 3, this announcement continues a trend of uninterrupted dividends by the company.

Bridge Bancorp, Inc. is a bank holding company engaged in commercial banking and financial services through its wholly owned subsidiary, The Bridgehampton National Bank. Established in 1910, the bank has assets of approximately $1.4 billion, a primary market area in Suffolk County, and operates 21 retail branch locations, including its newest branch in Ronkonkoma.

Through the branch network and electronic delivery channels, the bank provides deposit and loan products and financial services to local businesses, consumers and municipalities. Title insurance services are offered through a subsidiary, Bridge Abstract, and investments through Bridge Investment Services.

BHS: Exclusive Representative for The Residences at Sagaponack

Brown Harris Stevens (www.bhshamptons.com) announced this week that they are proud to be the exclusive representatives of The Residences at Sagaponac, a premiere development of traditional luxury homes in Sagaponack. Pre-construction offerings, created by world-renowned architects, these designs combine traditional American architecture with advanced modern amenities and technology.

For more information, contact Ingrid Brownyard at Brown Harris Stevens Sag Harbor office at ibrownyard@bhshamptons.com or Amelia Doggwiler in the firm’s Southampton office at adoggwiler@bhshampton.com.

REVCO Lighting + Electrical Supply, Inc. Launches Clean Energy Division

REVCO Lighting + Electrical Supply (www.revcoelectric.com) has announced the launch of its Clean Energy Division. In addition to an assortment of electrical supplies and lighting, REVCO now offers the latest in energy efficient technology including solar photovoltaic systems, wind energy solutions, LED lighting and charging stations for the electric vehicle. These products are suitable for both residential and commercial application.

In May, the company installed a 50kw solar panel system at its Southampton branch in order to better educate its customers and staff on this technology and to conserve electricity. Since then, REVCO has seen a 45-percent reduction in its own utility costs. REVCO is also hosts one of the South Fork’s first electric vehicle charging stations, now open for public use at their Southampton branch.

REVCO will be celebrating the launch of this new division at a party on Friday, October 26 from 5 to 7p.m. at its Southampton branch and will even offer a free charge up.

Fishers Home Furnishings Storewide Sale

Fishers Home Furnishings (fishershomefurnishings.com) on Main Street in Sag Harbor will continue its storewide sale, offering 20 to 60 percent off all stock in store through October 14 and continuing to offer 20 percent off upholstery orders through October 31.

For more information, call 725-0006.

Peconic Landing Launches Community Connection Events

Peconic Landing (www.PeconicLanding.org), located on a 144-acre campus in Greenport, last week announced it has launched its fall Community Connection series of life enrichment and cultural programs for area residents of all ages.

“Many of our programs are open to the public,” said Peconic Landing Cultural Arts Coordinator Dominic Antignano. Antignano is also curator for the Outdoor Living Gallery, a permanent selection of sculptures from world-renowned artists on display at Peconic Landing’s Brecknock Gall and open daily for self guided tours from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

As a partner of the Maritime Heritage of the North Fork, a month long signature series event of Arts Alive Long Island, Peconic Landing will also host events including Maritime Inspired Art, a juried art show opening at Brecknock Hall on October 18 with a free reception from 5:30 to 6:30 p.m. Songs of the Sea follows at 6:30 p.m. with Frank Hendricks presenting some lesser known aspects of maritime music as he performs sea shanties and focsles.

A professional development series has also been planned at Brecknock Hall. “Time Management Make-over” will be presented on Tuesday, October 16 at 7 p.m.

On the lighter side of classes, “Designing Silver Jewelry Using Precious Metal Clay will be offered Mondays, October 15 through October 29 from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m.

For more information, or to register, call 477-BLUE.

“In My Mind” Adopted by Autism Society

Alex Olinkiewicz and Dr. Richard O’Connell announced this week that The Autism Society has adopted their book, “In My Mind,” based on the successful YouTube videos of the same name that has over 1,300,000 viewers, for distribution.

This summer, “In My Mind” was featured in readings at The American Hotel in Sag Harbor and Claudio’s in Greenport.

“In My Mind” chronicles Olinkiewicz, a Shelter Island native, and his experience as a person with Asperger’s.

For more information, visit www.createspace.com/3899100.

Pepalajefa Announces Fall Menu Items

Pepalajefa (pepalajefa.com), located at 7 Main Street in Sag Harbor, announced last week that it will offer new fall menu items this season, featuring a hot case with warm items and daily soup, meat, pasta and side specials.

Included on the fall menu is Spanish lentil soup ($6.50), eggplant caponata and goat cheese on focaccia ($8.50), meatloaf and cornichons on a baguette ($9.75), chorizo with leeks ($12.50 per pound), Moroccan chicken legs ($12 per pound), polenta with wild mushrooms ($7.50) and figs with goat cheese and bacon ($2).

Pepalajefa is open Thursday through Tuesday till 6 p.m. For more information, call 899-4630.

Core Dynamics Offers 4 Weeks of GPT for $259

Core Dynamics, (www.coredynamicsgym.com) on Deerfield Road in Watermill announced this week that it will offer Group Performance Training (GPT), a small group training of no more than six people per group, designed to maximize the body’s fat burning ability through circuit training methods.

Group Performance Training is now offered Monday, Wednesday and Friday at 8:30 a.m., Tuesday and Thursday at 8 a.m., and Monday through Thursday at 6 p.m.

Core Dynamics offers a free week trial (up to 2 classes) of GPT for members and offers 4-weeks of GPT for $259.

Offer expires October 31. For more information, call 726-6049 or email the Core Dynamics team at info@coredynamicsgym.com

 

 

 

Republican Randy Altschuler Set to Speak This Thursday at East Hampton Chamber of Commerce Luncheon in Sag Harbor

Tags: , , , , ,


Republican, Independence and Conservative Congressional candidate Randy Altschuler will speak at an East Hampton Chamber of Commerce luncheon today, September 20, at The American Hotel in Sag Harbor.

The luncheon will cost $50 and will feature Altschuler, who is facing off against Democratic Congressman Tim Bishop this November.

It will be the second race between Altschuler, a businessman who lives in St. James, and Bishop, a lifelong Southampton resident.

Restoring an American Beauty

Tags: , ,


web Am Hotel

The American Hotel was constructed 163 years ago, yet it remains one of the most iconic buildings in Sag Harbor Village. Historic structures, however, constantly demand attention to keep them pristine and in the coming years the Main Street hotel will undergo a bit of a face lift. Kevin Wolfe, an architect specializing in the renovation of older buildings, was on hand at a recent village historic preservation and architectural review meeting to explain the upcoming project.

“It is a masonry restoration of the exterior facades,” explained Wolfe during a later interview. According to Wolfe, the masonry on all four sides of the building will be restored. The joints will also be re-pointed, added Wolfe, meaning the mortar in between the bricks of the building will be replaced with new mortar. As Wolfe explains it, the mortar has been analyzed by a laboratory to identify an exact mix so that the new mortar will replicate the original material in texture and color. The project also includes stripping away the white stucco from the sides of the building, including the side of the hotel on Carruther’s Alley, the roadway connecting Main and Division Street.

This portion of the project, however, requires a degree of coordination with the village.

“There is scaffolding involved. The strategy is to hang off the side of the building,” said Wolfe at the meeting. “They will use the alley at some point to strip off the coating … but we are trying to do this at a time when business is slowest.”

Although the ARB accepted the project’s certificate of appropriateness, Wolfe didn’t have a set date for when the restoration will begin. He said repairs will most likely commence this fall but take years to finish.

“[The project] will be done in stages, because of the timing of the weather and it has to have the least impact on visitors and villagers. It will be complete in spring of 2011,” said Wolfe.

The project also includes repairing and replacing some of the decorative elements which adorn the front entrance to the hotel. Over the years, reported Wolfe, such things as the parapets on top of the building have either fallen off or simply vanished.

The hotel derives its local fame not only from its formidable exterior and interior, but also from its storied past. The book “Guide to Sag Harbor: Landmarks, Homes and History,” penned by Henry Weisburg and Lisa Donneson, describes how James Howell’s Inn once stood where the hotel is today. According to the book, during the American Revolution, a group of British soldiers were captured at the inn. The inn later housed Nathan Tinker’s cabinetmaking shop until about 1845. After the inn was most likely destroyed in a fire, Tinker built anew in 1846 and created the building which is now The American Hotel. At first, Tinker used the brick structure as a personal residence but it was later turned into an hotel in the 1870s. Weisburg and Donneson said the porch was built in 1876 and a section of the parapets are original to the structure.

Restoring historic buildings, especially ones in the historic district of the village, takes a great deal of sensitivity, but the ARB board members appeared very pleased with Wolfe’s plans for the hotel.

Of the project, chairman Cee Scott Brown said “Aesthetically, this is a wonderful thing.”

Restoring an American Beauty

Tags: , ,


The American Hotel was constructed 163 years ago, yet it remains one of the most iconic buildings in Sag Harbor Village. Historic structures, however, constantly demand attention to keep them pristine and in the coming years the Main Street hotel will undergo a bit of a face lift. Kevin Wolfe, an architect specializing in the renovation of older buildings, was on hand at a recent village historic preservation and architectural review meeting to explain the upcoming project.

“It is a masonry restoration of the exterior facades,” explained Wolfe during a later interview. According to Wolfe, the masonry on all four sides of the building will be restored. The joints will also be re-pointed, added Wolfe, meaning the mortar in between the bricks of the building will be replaced with new mortar. As Wolfe explains it, the mortar has been analyzed by a laboratory to identify an exact mix so that the new mortar will replicate the original material in texture and color. The project also includes stripping away the white stucco from the sides of the building, including the side of the hotel on Carruther’s Alley, the roadway connecting Main and Division Street.

This portion of the project, however, requires a degree of coordination with the village.

“There is scaffolding involved. The strategy is to hang off the side of the building,” said Wolfe at the meeting. “They will use the alley at some point to strip off the coating … but we are trying to do this at a time when business is slowest.”

Although the ARB accepted the project’s certificate of appropriateness, Wolfe didn’t have a set date for when the restoration will begin. He said repairs will most likely commence this fall but take years to finish.

“[The project] will be done in stages, because of the timing of the weather and it has to have the least impact on visitors and villagers. It will be complete in spring of 2011,” said Wolfe.

The project also includes repairing and replacing some of the decorative elements which adorn the front entrance to the hotel. Over the years, reported Wolfe, such things as the parapets on top of the building have either fallen off or simply vanished.

The hotel derives its local fame not only from its formidable exterior and interior, but also from its storied past. The book “Guide to Sag Harbor: Landmarks, Homes and History,” penned by Henry Weisburg and Lisa Donneson, describes how James Howell’s Inn once stood where the hotel is today. According to the book, during the American Revolution, a group of British soldiers were captured at the inn. The inn later housed Nathan Tinker’s cabinetmaking shop until about 1845. After the inn was most likely destroyed in a fire, Tinker built anew in 1846 and created the building which is now The American Hotel. At first, Tinker used the brick structure as a personal residence but it was later turned into an hotel in the 1870s. Weisburg and Donneson said the porch was built in 1876 and a section of the parapets are original to the structure.

Restoring historic buildings, especially ones in the historic district of the village, takes a great deal of sensitivity, but the ARB board members appeared very pleased with Wolfe’s plans for the hotel.

Of the project, chairman Cee Scott Brown said “Aesthetically, this is a wonderful thing.”

Kate Plumb

Tags: , , , , , , , ,


web Kate Plum

The Sag Harbor resident, former owner of the health food store Provisions, member of Slow Food Long Island and organizer of the East Hampton Farmers’ Market talks about why she thinks the East End is poised to return to its sustainable roots.

Where was your interest in local farming and food culture born?

I was thinking about that and I actually think my first experience with health food was in 1968. I was living in Vermont in an unheated log cabin near Goddard and one of the fellows would buy buckwheat groats, cashews, almonds and such for the commune we were living in. It was the first time in my life I distinctly remember eating that way. I came from baloney sandwiches and fish sticks. My parents both worked with five kids in the city and would have our monthly delivery of frozen meats, so that was what we ate –that and fish sticks. But in Vermont we ate this other way, eating rice, buckwheat, nuts, dates and things like that. One day someone brought a chocolate cake in and I had not had sugar in my system for so long I got violently ill. I think that awakened my interest in eating and how important food is. Since then, I have always been interested in food, which I think is healing. It really landed full square in 1982 when I lived in Sag Harbor in a rented room with Linda Sherry and Linley Pennebaker (Whelan) asked me to join her in buying Provisions, which was where D.J. Hart is now … In those days, health food was nothing. Don Katz said to me years later that he bet his wife $100 we would not make it. The oatmeal craze, to lower cholesterol was the first big hit we had and it just sort of took off. People came in looking to buy one item and bought more. It was effective, and that was that.

Farmers’ markets on the East End have grown in popularity in the last five years. When did you see this trend take hold and why is it so popular to eat locally?

In 2004, Brian Halweil got onto the village Harbor Committee after he and his wife Sara bought their home in Sag Harbor after summering here for a number of years. As trends move from west to east, he suggested we have a Farmer’s Market in Sag Harbor as a part of HarborFest and the girls at Dockside allowed us to use their lawn. It was suppose to be a one-day event, but we finished out the month of September and went through October. I was involved with that market as a founding member of the EECO [East End Community Organic] Farm, which I was on the board of and whose farm stand I helped run for a number of years. There were about six of us that Brian got together to compose the first Sag Harbor’s Farmer’s Market.

Elise Collins had already started a market in Westhampton Beach, but there were not many before 2004. Certainly since then it has grown. Montauk just started its market on Thursdays and Southampton Village has opened theirs. We have another at Hayground in Bridgehampton on Fridays from 3 p.m. to 7 p.m. that is just wrapping up and Friday mornings we have the East Hampton market at Nick and Toni’s, and of course, there is Sag Harbor on Saturdays.

I think they are popular for a number of reasons, perhaps the most overarching one being what happens to you when you shop at a local farmer’s market – the emotional quotient of seeing your neighbors, talking to the person who is producing your food – it becomes a fun place to shop. There is that side, and of course, the taste of the food because it was just harvested that morning, not shipped over the last week from California or Florida. But most importantly, the farmers’ market has become a community center, which is how it traditionally has been in Europe and Central America. They are the center of a village. They also enable young farmers to sell to their customers and get the most return. This will in the long run help local farmers like the Wesnofske Brothers in East Hampton, a third generation Polish farming family, that will be able to continue farming because of opportunities like this. It is a way of making a living as a farmer once more.

What is your hope for the future for local farmer’s markets?

I think there should be one in every village and hamlet. I hope they get bigger. I encourage more people to produce, catch and make their own products. It would be great to find a building year round for the markets. It would help farmers’ grow year round, which is possible. We need a building – that would be the wave of the future.

Amagansett does not have a traditional farmers’ market, although the Peconic Land Trust did purchase the Main Street farmers’ market and has leased it to Eli Zabar of Manhattan. Would that kind of space suit a year round farmers’ market?

I think that would be fine, although the space is not heated so whether it could be used year round would require some investigation. Someone has suggested the Polish Hall in Southampton and I do not know what Southampton Town has planned for the old Marders Building once the Hampton Library in Bridgehampton has completed construction [and moves out of the Marders Building]. It would be great to have a year round farmers’ market with a commercial kitchen in it, opening the space up to allowing people to make prepared foods and teach classes.

As a member of the local chapter of Slow Foods, what are some of the initiatives you would like that organization to tackle locally?

I am so happy that Josh Viertel is now the president of Slow Food USA. They have taken on this whole real food in schools initiative because Congress is getting ready to re-authorize the Child Nutrition Act in the fall and the money government reimburses to our schools mostly is for transportation, hard costs, not for food. Slow Foods strongly wants to ask Congress, and Labor Day is a national day of action, to up the ante and add one dollar in reimbursements per child so schools can have local foods in their cafeterias. We will locally host an Eat In at the Bridgehampton School from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. on Labor Day. There will be 250 of these events nationwide.

What are some of your favorite local farm stands?

I go to the farmers’ markets a lot, but when I go to farm stands it is usually what is on the way. I go to Marilee Foster and Pike Farms because that is on my way to Sagg Main Beach. When the apples come into season, I will go to the Milk Pail.

What chefs on the East End do you think embrace sustainable food culture?

Ted Conklin of The American Hotel was a pioneer because he was a farmer before he was a restaurateur. Also, Nick and Toni’s in East Hampton has been on the forefront. Like Ted, they have a garden at their restaurant. When [former owner] Jeff Salaway was alive he and Joe Realmuto and Mark Smith showed a deep commitment to local food, which Joe and Mark continue today. It’s a very special place. Talking to Balsam Farms is a good way to see what chefs are using local products because they know who is buying it. I know James Carpenter at The Living Room at The Maidstone Arms is focused on it and I hear Rugosa is as well, although I have yet to eat there. When I worked with the EECO Farm I delivered to Della Femina, and I know Yama-Q is very conscientious. Our farmers’ markets have a lot of chefs placing orders with the vendors.

Given the wealth of local food products at the end of the summer, what is your ideal Labor Day menu at home?

Eric Braun of East Hampton Farmers’ Market, one of the last of the dying breed of bay men, his fish and his scallops are divine. He also smokes his own bluefish. I would get corn from Balsam Farm and tomatoes from Marilee. I would get peaches from Wesnofske Brothers and blueberries from Pikes. Melons are just delicious right now. Balsam also has some wonderful fingerling potatoes and Sang Lee Farms has wonderful greens for a salad. And then there are pickles … I could just go on and on. I can’t think of anything better than all these different foods. The fruit pies are heaven right now. We are really so blessed with everything that is available to us right now. I feel very grateful.


Sag Harbor Votes For Change In Historic National Election

Tags: , , , , , , ,


While Bay Street Theatre may not have been able to boast the crowds that packed Chicago’s Grant Park, on Tuesday night there was a palpable sense of excitement in Sag Harbor as village residents gathered at the theatre, The American Hotel and Bay Burger to bear witness to the historic Presidential election of Illinois Senator Barack Obama.

Obama, the Democratic candidate, was not just successful in the Electoral College, where he bested Republican Arizona Senator John McCain 349 to 163, with 26 electoral votes out of North Carolina and Missouri still hanging in the balance as of Wednesday, but took states like Indiana and Virginia – states that had not voted for a Democratic president in decades. He was also able to easily take the popular vote collecting roughly 63 million votes to McCain’s 56 million.

Nationally, an estimated 64 percent of the electorate turned out on Tuesday to cast their ballots for president – a record turnout. However, residents of Suffolk County appear to take their voting seriously year in and year out, with an estimated 70 percent of registered voters pulling the lever for a presidential candidate this election cycle. In 2004, about 72 percent of the electorate stepped out to vote in the presidential contest between Democrat John Kerry and President George W. Bush.

As was the case in 2004, a majority of Suffolk County and East End residents voted for the Democratic candidate this year, with Obama taking approximately 52 percent of the votes cast to McCain’s 47 percent. On the East End, and in particularly Sag Harbor, Bridgehampton, Noyac, North Haven and Sagaponack Obama won by far greater margins.

On the Southampton Town side of Sag Harbor (districts 1 and 21) 741 voters turned out to support Obama, with McCain earning 309 votes. On the East Hampton side of Sag Harbor, 515 residents turned out in support of the Democratic candidate, with 124 voting for McCain. In Northwest Woods, 533 of the electorate pulled the lever for Obama with 232 voting for McCain.

In Noyac (districts 2 and 36), Obama took 725 votes with McCain clocking in with 428. In North Haven-Baypoint, voters handed Obama 432 votes and McCain a solid 368. In Bridgehampton and Sagaponack (districts 3 and 13), Obama snared 830 votes to McCain’s 369.

While there may have been a number of supporters of the Republican candidate on the East End, at Bay Street Theatre and The American Hotel on Tuesday night, prior to the election being called in Obama’s favor, it was as if he had already won the race with many residents offering their enthusiasm and advice for the man who would later that evening become the United State’s first African-American President.

Sag Harbor resident Mia Grosjean said she had little advice for the president-elect, as he already seemed to be moving in the direction she supports – community activism.

“Encourage young people to remain active, get involved and make a difference,” piped in Helen Samuels of her hopes for Obama.

“Govern with peace and justice,” advised Dennis Carr.

Many also spoke of their desire to see a country united, and their hope the 47-year old senator will be the man to do just that.

“To make people proud to be in this country and to make it something it was when I was a child,” said North Haven resident Richard Demato of his hopes for the Obama regime. “Make it something to be excited about.”

“I want him to bring us together,” said another guest at The American Hotel on Tuesday night. “And never forget he’s the president of the whole country.”

 Congressman Tim Bishop, who handily regained his seat in the United States House of Representatives securing 58 percent of the vote to Republican challenger Lee Zeldin’s 42 percent, had similar thoughts about the future of the federal government and the mandate he says the American people have now handed the Democratic Party, which will have control of the House, the Senate and the Executive branches.

“I think that it gives us great hope for the future,” said Bishop. “I think the other thing is we have to be very careful to not make the same mistakes the Republican Party made when it had a majority, where the national party really allowed itself to be moved to the right. We, as a party, need to resist the temptation to move to the far left. We need to recognize that we need to achieve balance and govern from the middle. That is Obama’s message, and it is an important one.”

Like Obama, Bishop took every election district in Sag Harbor, Noyac, North Haven and Baypoint, in Northwest Woods, Bridgehampton and Sagaponack, often securing more than double the votes Zeldin was able to gather in his inaugural bid for political office.

In a prime example of the continued success of the Democratic Party on Tuesday, Democrat Sally Pope bested incumbent Republican Dan Russo to earn a seat on the Southampton Town Board securing 52 percent of the vote to Russo’s 48 percent by a narrow margin of 741 votes. However, with over 2,000 absentee ballots expected to be counted next Wednesday, Russo has said the race is too close to call.

According to preliminary results out of the Suffolk County Board of Elections, Russo was only able to win two districts in our area – one in Sagaponack-Bridgehampton (district 13) and the other in Noyac (district 36). Pope took the remaining districts in Sag Harbor, one in Noyac, in North Haven and another in Bridgehampton.

Sag Harbor resident and Democratic candidate for Southampton Town Justice Andrea Schiavoni also appears to have been successful in her attempt to oust Republican justice Thomas DeMayo, taking 56.5 percent of the electorate to DeMayo’s 43.5 percent by earning 2,822 more votes than the incumbent. Schiavoni won all districts in Sag Harbor, Noyac, North Haven and Baypoint, Sagaponack, Bridgehampton and in Northwest Woods.

One Republican on the East End who coasted to victory with relative ease was incumbent New York State Assemblyman Fred W. Thiele, Jr. who won his seat over Democratic challenger W. Michael Pitcher with 63 percent of the vote to Pitcher’s 37 percent. Thiele was victorious by over 12,000 votes.

New York State Senator Ken LaValle, a Republican incumbent who was running unopposed also earned reelection in Tuesday’s race.

But like many Republicans nationwide, Thiele is looking at a Democratic majority, not just in the assembly, but likely in the senate with a Democratic governor in place.

However, Thiele is not worried, noting he was pleased to see 15 percent of voters who turned out to support him did so under party lines that were not Republican, meaning those outside his party supported his bid for reelection.

“My approach has always been to not be overtly partisan,” said Thiele. “I think that is what people are looking for in government.”