By Julianne Mosher

The second annual Vogue in the Village Fashion Show is heading to Theatre Three in Port Jefferson this month so locals can strut their stuff in the latest styles from the village’s boutiques all for a good cause.

Scheduled for Thursday, Feb. 29 at 7 p.m., (on Leap Day), this year’s theme is appropriately titled “Leap Into Fashion.”

Hosted by the Greater Port Jefferson Chamber of Commerce and Theatre Three, the event follows a successful show last year. Barbara Ransome, director of operations at the chamber, said that last year’s ticket sales went back to supporting the chamber and their events. And while this is partly true this year, Ransome added that donations from the 2024 show will also go to the Town of Brookhaven’s Dress for Success program.

According to the Town of Brookhaven website, “Dress for Success Brookhaven is part of an international nonprofit organization that empowers women to achieve economic independence by providing a network of support, professional attire and the developmental tools to help them thrive in work and life.”

Since 1999, Dress for Success has helped over 6,000 women work towards self-sufficiency in the Town of Brookhaven.

Ransome said this a great way to get the word out about local stores like Fame & Rebel, Kate & Hale, The Smokin’ Gentleman, Ivory & Main, Sue La La Couture, Timber & Ties and Dr. G Sustainability Lifestyle. 

In addition, before the show and during intermission, a vendor’s marketplace with tables set up for different organizations, businesses and services will be held throughout the theater’s lower level. 

Douglas Quattrock, third vice president of the chamber and artistic associate and director of development at Theatre Three, said this year they have about 50 models coming out to get done up and sashay across the stage. “It has built up a lot since last year,” he said. “What I love is the community coming together.”

Along with local shops donating their services, local beauty salons like Fedora Lounge Boutique Hair Salon, The Hair Bar and Karasmatic Day Spa are planning to help out with hair and makeup before the show. 

The models are getting the full glam experience — men, women and even dogs.

Ransome noted that, like last year, dogs for adoption with Yorkie 911 Rescue will prance on stage wearing accessories from Fetch Doggy Boutique and Bakery on East Main Street. The 2023/2024 Ms. New York Senior America, Mae Caime, is also going to be a highlighted model.

“It’s one-stop-shopping the see the best of the village in one night,” Quattrock said. 

The 2nd Annual Vogue in the Village Fashion Show will be held at Theatre Three, 412 Main St., Port Jefferson on Thursday, Feb. 29 from 7 to 9 p.m. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. The vendor marketplace opens at 5 p.m. 

The first 100 ticket holders to arrive will receive a fabulous gift: a swag bag, filled with goods from the local merchants. Tickets are $20 cash and check, $25 for credit card and online. Donations for Dress for Success will be accepted at the event or online when purchasing tickets.

For more information, call 631-473-1414 or visit

METRO photo

Tickets are on sale now for the Resurrection Byzantine Catholic Church’s annual Spaghetti Dinner fundraiser at the Church’s Social Hall, 38 Mayflower Ave., Smithtown on Sunday, Feb. 4 from 1 to 5 p.m.  Enjoy a delicious meal of spaghetti and meatballs, salad, dessert and coffee. Sit down or take out. $25 per adult, $15 children. For reservations, please call 631-332-1449 by January 21. 

Great Horned Owl, “Tiger Lily,” displays her prowess. Photo by Cayla Rosenhagen

Join Sweetbriar Nature Center for a Rock N’ Raptors fundraiser at the Bates House, 1 Bates Road, Setauket on Saturday, Jan. 27 from 2 to 6 p.m. Enjoy live music, raptor presentations, raffles, games, food, and more. Bring your whole family or rock out with your friends. All the funds from this event and raffles help Sweetbriar take care of all the wildlife that comes through their doors and educate all the children that will be stewards of our planet. Held rain or shine. Tickets are $25 per adult, kids under age 12 are free. To order, visit 

By Michael Scro

The Town of Huntington hosted its 3rd annual Polar Plunge event at Frank P. Petrone Crab Meadow Beach on Sunday, Dec. 10, when well over 100 participants bravely made their way into the frigid water for a worthy cause, helping to raise more than $22,000 for Special Olympic athletes.

With temperatures unseasonably warm — at high 40s, low 50s — on the cloudy December morning, the water was somewhat more tolerable but still sent most plungers into shivers and cold shock as soon as they hit the water.

Town of Huntington Councilman Dave Bennardo (R) thanked everyone for attending, including students from neighboring schools such as Elwood, South Huntington and Northport, highlighting “the real stars of the show being our friends from the Special Olympics.”

John Cronin and his father, Mark, from John’s Crazy Socks, a Farmingdale-based business that sells various themed socks and donates 5% of its earnings to the Special Olympics, co-hosted the event with the town. Bennardo also pointed out that John Cronin has done 10 Polar Plunges, prompting a round of applause.

“John is an inspiration,” Bennardo said. “If he can do all the great things he’s done, we can certainly plunge in the water once for our Special Olympic friends,” adding, “Today, we put aside differences and different sides of the aisle and focus on something that has no downside — taking care of people we love.”

With John Cronin by his father’s side, Mark asked if he was ready to take another plunge, to which he happily replied, “I was born ready.” John and his father also handed participants polar bear-themed socks to help keep them warm after the plunge.

The Northport/East Northport Community Drug & Alcohol Task Force hosts its 6th annual Color Run on Saturday, Nov. 4. Photo courtesy NENDATF

Hundreds gathered at Northport Middle School on Saturday, Nov. 4, in support of the 6th annual Color Run hosted by the Northport/East Northport Community Drug & Alcohol Task Force.

The Color Run is a unique and vibrant event that combines the elements of a fun run with an explosion of color, fun and community spirit. Participants donned white t-shirts, symbolic of a blank canvas, and raced through the course, where they were showered by volunteers with nontoxic, biodegradable colored powder at various “color stations” along the route.

The run culminates in a “finish festival” featuring music, dancing, games and a photo booth. Several organizations operated information booths as well, including the Family & Children’s Association, Hands Across Long Island, Gabriel’s Giving Tree, Families in Support of Treatment, CN Guidance Counseling Services, Seafield, and more.

The event was made possible due to generous sponsorships by Geico and National Event Connection, as well as hard work by community volunteers and students from 1Life Youth Coalition and the Northport High School Wilderness Club.

The annual Color Run coincides with R.A.P. — Recovery, Awareness, Prevention — Week in the Northport-East Northport Union Free School District, during which students participate in age-appropriate group programming and activities that provide valuable education on the dangers of substance use.

“R.A.P. Week is a great way to impart valuable lessons about making smart choices when it comes to drugs, but we also have to show people how much joy and color can be found in everyday life,” said Linda Oristano, project coordinator for the NENDATF. “I’m incredibly grateful to our volunteers for their hard work and generosity, and to everyone in the community who showed up to support this beautiful cause.”

The NENDATF is a community organization founded in 2006 to address the devastation and loss of life caused by the drug epidemic and highlight support structures for those in recovery.

For more information about how to get involved, visit

Melville-based H2M architects + engineers collects over 750 turkeys during its 6th annual Turkey Drive. Photos courtesy H2M architects + engineers

Melville-based H2M architects + engineers collected over 750 turkeys for its 6th annual Turkey Drive on Thursday, Nov. 16, and Friday, Nov. 17.

The drive was hosted in partnership with Island Harvest, Long Island’s leading hunger relief organization, in support of its 2023 Turkeys & Trimmings Collection Campaign.

Melville-based H2M architects + engineers collects over 750 turkeys during its 6th annual Turkey Drive. Photos courtesy H2M architects + engineers

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, approximately 38 million Americans, including 12 million children, qualify as “food insecure,” defined as a lack of consistent, dependable access to healthy food.

Since its founding in 1992, Island Harvest has helped feed millions of Long Islanders through comprehensive nutrition programs, including programs geared toward children, families, seniors and veterans.

H2M staff collected the frozen turkeys in the east parking lot of H2M’s headquarters. As the drive concluded, H2M had surpassed its collection goal of 600 turkeys and over 300 meals, each of which was donated to Island Harvest to support a family in need. H2M also raised over $6,000 in monetary donations from a combination of individual and corporate donors as of Nov. 20.

“It’s truly an honor to partner with Island Harvest every year and play a part in their mission to end hunger on Long Island,” said H2M president and CEO Rich Humann. “I’m grateful to lead a company that places so much value on giving back to the community,” adding, “My thanks go out to the entire H2M team for their hard work and all of our donors for their generosity and good will.”

H2M is collecting monetary donations via DonorPerfect through Nov. 30. Additionally, Island Harvest will continue collecting turkeys and other Thanksgiving food items through Dec. 30.

For more information on how to support Island Harvest’s Turkey & Trimmings Collection Campaign, visit

Amid whipping winds and frigid waves, hundreds of Long Islanders braved the conditions this weekend for a good cause at Cedar Beach in Mount Sinai.

Whether they were dressed as penguins, donned knitted turkeys on their heads or wore next to nothing at all, they all dove in the roughly 45-degree water, raising money for the Special Olympics New York during the Town of Brookhaven’s 14th annual Freezin’ for a Reason Polar Plunge.

Rebecca Hoffmann, director of development at Special Olympics New York and one of the lead organizers of this event, could not remember the conditions being so — ahem — unbearable for the plungers, and she appreciated each and every hardy soul who participated.

“The Special Olympics is super thankful to the plunging community for coming out and not letting the really cold conditions stop them,” said Hoffmann, who has run the Brookhaven plunge for two years and been with the Special Olympics for eight. “Over 600 people went in the water, and they raised over $140,000, which is good enough to sponsor 350 Special Olympic athletes for a year.”

She added, “I think it is truly amazing to see the community rally together in support of our special athletes.”

The $140,000 raised in 2023 surpassed the total from 2022 by $12,000.

But due to the harsher than expected conditions, a maximum of six people were permitted per plunge this time around. The teams took turns in two-minute intervals, running into the inhospitable waters of the Long Island Sound.

Some chose to go up to their ankles while others fully submerged themselves — a few hooligans even snapping a few selfies while doing so as if it were the middle of August.

One such group — a foursome known as Team Freezin’ Minions — treated the arctic surf like it was their own personal bathtub, dunked themselves into the drink decked out in full-length emperor penguin costumes.

Crystal Vega, captain of the Minions, has been polar plunging for eight years.

“We are so happy to support the Special Olympics today,” said Vega, whose team raised $6,636 despite her losing a water shoe in the Sound. “This is the roughest water I can ever remember, so trying to stay safe and getting the full ‘plunge’ experience was a little difficult, but we survived,” adding, “All of us, except my shoe.”

Other teams included the Arctic Zebras, the North Pole Karens, the Sassy Swimmers, groups of philanthropic students from Port Jefferson, Ward Melville, Mount Sinai and Miller Place high schools as well as Town of Brookhaven Councilwoman Jane Bonner’s (R-Rocky Point) Frozen Eagles, who raised over $4,000 this year. Bonner has jumped in 13 out of 14 Brookhaven plunges, missing only in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Plungers started hitting the icy waters at about 11:30 a.m., but the festivities kicked off hours early with a few brave souls enjoying hot chocolate, coffee and egg sandwiches as they nervously paced around the Cedar Beach parking lot, awaiting their inevitable appointment with the water.

The Suffolk County Civil Service Employees Association — aka the CSEA Crazies — provided their famous potato soup and spicy chili. They are familiar faces at Cedar Beach in November.

“We’ve been out here at the Polar Plunge since the beginning — all 13 years,” said Bob Brandow, a member of the Crazies who is responsible for making 100 quarts of chili. “Whatever money we get for the food we sell, in addition to the funds we raise via sponsorships, all goes to the Special Olympics. It’s a great cause.”

Team Sachem raised the most money, bringing in over $19,000 with Team Extraordinary in second with $14,500 and Big Ed’s Big Hearts in third with $12,700.

Annual holiday event celebrates shipyards and shorelines

By Rita J. Egan

With the holidays approaching, the Three Village Historical Society is preparing to light the way with a touch of history and seasonal decor.

The historical society will host its Candlelight House Tour on Friday, Dec. 1, and Saturday, Dec. 2. The event, titled Shipyards and Shorelines, will feature homes near the shores of Setauket Harbor, according to event co-chairs Patty Yantz and Patty Cain. Rounding out the house tour will be the Caroline Church of Setauket. The church celebrated its 300th anniversary this year.

Most of the four homes are on Shore Road, an area known as the Dyers Neck Historic District.

“There will be beautiful homes decorated in seasonal décor by our talented decorators,” Cain said.

The annual event allows visitors to visit the homes to see the designers’ work. 

“All of our events, no matter how glamorous, they are all rooted in education,” said Mari Irizarry, TVHS director. “The Candlelight House Tour, now in its 44th year, is our biggest fundraiser, with all proceeds going directly towards our operating costs. We welcome over 1,000 guests and over 100 volunteers to appreciate historic architecture of the Three Village community and learn about the people that helped build our community.”

Irizarry said the chosen homes are revealed to attendees when they pick up a booklet before their tour begins. This year’s choices include a mixture of historic homes and houses recognized for their aesthetic beauty.

“There is one grand house, down a hidden path behind gates that is ‘shore’ to be the belle of the ball,” Irizarry said.

As early as 1662, the area was once the center of shipbuilding. In the 19th century, the industry became a major commercial activity. According to Yantz and Cain, the tour will focus on shipbuilding, local architecture, oystering and whaling.

Irizarry added the 439-ton whaling ship Daisy was among the inspirations. The ship was built in 1871-72 at Nehemiah Hand’s shipyard, which was located along Shore Road in East Setauket.

According to Yantz, during the event, the society board members will share photos and documents from TVHS archives and little-known local history trivia.

In addition to the house tours, the historical society will host a reception Friday night at The Old Field Club from 9 p.m. to 11 p.m. and a breakfast Saturday at the club from 8:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. for additional fees. The breakfast and tour package allows attendees to visit the homes an hour before they are officially opened.

TVHS members presale begins today, Thursday, Nov. 2 and runs until Nov. 5. Tickets will be available for non-members starting Nov 6. The Friday, Dec. 1 tour runs from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. Tickets for members are $75 and non-members $90. Friday night’s tour and reception package ticket is $145 for members and $175 for non-members. Saturday’s tour is $55 for members and $70 for nonmembers. Saturday’s tour and breakfast combo is $90 and $120.

For more information, visit

Despite challenging weather conditions, more than 50 vendors, including crafts people, local businesses and Community agencies braved the elements and participated in the Sunshine Prevention Center’s Fall Family Festival in Port Jefferson Station on October 14.

In addition to vendors and supportive agencies, there were over 60 raffle prizes and a unique variety of auction items.  For children, there was face painting, balloon making and bouncy houses, courtesy of Tent Pro.   

Overall, the event provided a wonderful venue to network, educate and spread the word about community services, and working together towards common community concerns focused on students and their families.  One example of this is the 65 Narcan kits that were handed out by the Suffolk County Police Department and their training of at least 100 individuals. These kits save lives.  

All in the name of fun for a cause, all proceeds benefit Sunshine’s Fall programs and holiday assistance programs.  In addition, the monies collected and donated to the event go to specific programs offered through this important non-profit organization.  These include newly formed evening programs focused on students and their families.  The monthly parent support/educational workshop series will present a different topic run by different professionals.

In a press release, the organization thanked Nancy Campo who was responsible for all the raffles; Robert Cohen, Sunshine Prevention Board’s President, who donated sports memorabilia for the silent auction; Town of Brookhaven Councilmember Jonathan Kornreich and Hank Heissenbuttel of Long Island Charities Foundation for their ongoing support of Sunshine’s mission and programs; and the Suffolk County Youth Bureau.

Sunshine Prevention Center is located at 468 Boyle Road, Port Jefferson Station. For additional information about their programs, visit www., call 631-476-3099 or email [email protected].

Historical re-enactors Mort Rosen and Donna Smith at last year's event. Photo by Raina Angelier

By Rita J. Egan

For nearly 30 years, the Three Village Historical Society (TVHS) has brewed up ghostly fun with a twist of history at its annual Spirits Cemetery Tour. The popular event returns on Saturday, Oct. 21 with A Century of Chicken Hill. 

Attendees will visit 10 locations in the Caroline Episcopal Church of Setauket and Setauket Presbyterian Church graveyards, where they will learn about the lives of former Chicken Hill residents.

Mari Irizarry, TVHS director, said the society’s educational committee writes and develops the scripts for the annual event. While some dialogues could be reused in the past, all the scripts are original this year.

A scene from the 2022 Spirits Tour. Photo by Raina Angler

“This year, we’re going to see some characters with names that we definitely know like Ridgeway, like Golden,” Irizarry said. “People who were really active in the Chicken Hill community just 100 years ago, 120 years ago.” Joseph Ridgeway was a key investor in the Rubber Factory which once operated in Setauket, and the Goldens were third-generation Jewish residents in the Three Village area.

During previous tours, actors playing the spirits would talk directly to attendees and describe their character’s life. While a few will do the same this year, overall, guests will walk in on conversations taking place among Chicken Hill spirits.

“You will listen in on a conversation they are having about maybe the shipyard off Shore Road or about the new railway that’s coming to Stony Brook,” Irizarry said.

With descendants of some of the former residents depicted on the tour still living in the area, the society’s director said they had the opportunity to confirm a fact about one spirit with a great-grandchild who lives in Stony Brook. “We don’t get to do that very often,” she said.

This year marks the first Spirits Tour Kimberly Phyfe, TVHS development coordinator, has worked on and will experience. She said she is excited to see it and knows regulars will, too.

“Even if you have come to the Spirits Tour in the past, year after year, you’re going to see new characters, you’re going to meet new spirits,” Phyfe said. “We have different locations. Even though, obviously they’re in the same church graveyards, it’s a totally different experience, because it’s all new scripts and a lot of new actors, a lot of returning actors, too.”

She added that researching using the historical society’s archives with Scott Ferrara, collections and exhibits coordinator, was fascinating.

Donna Smith portrays Maria Smith Williamson during previous Spirits Tour

“We were able to reference pieces in our archives that directly relate to and support the scripts of the Chicken Hill characters,” Phyfe said, adding among the items are the Ridgeway family bible, and items listed in a ledger that Rubber Factory laborer and Chicken Hill community member Jacob Hart’s wife, Hannah, bought at the Tyler General Store and more. 

“Just knowing that our archives are in direct relation to the program that we are putting on is really incredible to be a part of,” she said. “lt’s living history. It’s not just in a box on the shelf somewhere. We’re able to bring that out into the community.”

Phyfe added characters not depicting a specific person will be based on the types of people they have documentation on.

Among those who played a part in writing and editing the script were Town of Brookhaven Historian Barbara Russell and professional editor Stephanie Sakson.

Sakson has portrayed spirits twice in the past and helped with the scripts. She said for the Chicken Hill dialogues, she fine-tuned them and added some more history and humor. She said researching Chicken Hill was interesting.

A scene from a previous Spirits Tour. Photo by Beverly C. Tyler

“I really didn’t know anything about Chicken Hill,” the Port Jefferson resident said. “I told my friends ‘you have to come see this!'”

She hopes attendees will gain “an appreciation that history is a living thing” and be inspired to do further research by visiting places such as the historical society and library.

“It’s not like it happened and it’s over,” she said. “You can see around you the effects of history, and how it has shaped how we feel about where we live and gives us an appreciation of how colorful and rich the place where we live is.”

The 29th Annual Spirits Tour will be held on Saturday, Oct. 21 (Rain date Oct. 28). Tours, which are approximately 1 hour and 15 minutes long, leave from the Setauket Presbyterian Church, 5 Caroline Ave., Setauket every 15 minutes starting at 5 p.m. The last tour departs at 7:30 p.m. 

Irizarry urges all tourgoers to arrive early, dress for extended time outdoors, wear comfortable walking shoes and bring a flashlight. An exhibit with additional information on Chicken Hill will be on display at Setauket Presbyterian Church throughout the night and complementary apple cider from Ann Marie’s Farmstand in Setauket and donuts donated from local supermarkets will be served.

Tickets in advance at are $25. Tickets on the night of the event, if available, are $30. For more information, call 631-751-3730.