Comsewogue senior Hayden Morris-Gray scored 49 points onDec. 2. Photo courtesy Rudy Gray

In an impressive performance, Comsewogue senior Hayden Morris-Gray was a one-man wrecking crew against William Floyd in a non-league matchup Friday, Dec. 2.

Morris-Gray dropped 49 points on his home court, sinking 11 three-pointers, 14 free throws and a field goal. His electric performance topped the scoring charts with 49 points, leading the Warriors in their 73-68 victory. The win lifts the Warriors to 1-1 in their division.

In the spirit of the season, a Holiday Toy and Gift Drive will be held at Infant Jesus Church food pantry, 110 Hawkins St., Port Jefferson on Sunday, Dec. 4 from 9 a.m. to noon. The community is asked to drop off unwrapped toys for children ages 3 to 13, such as soccer balls, dolls, Barbies, Legos, basketballs, Paw Patrol, board games, remote controlled cars, etc. Unwrapped gifts for children ages 14 to 18 such as lotions, hair accessories, hats, gloves, socks, toiletries, men’s cologne and gift cards are also welcomed. Sponsored by “Call-Brian” Senior Services.

Above, presenters during Career Day at Terryville Road Elementary School. Photo courtesy Meaghan Reilly
By Meaghan Reilly

“What do you want to be when you grow up?” 

Students at Comsewogue’s Terryville Road Elementary School had the opportunity to consider this critical question and get some firsthand experience during Career Day on Thursday, Nov. 17. 

Unable to host its generous presenters throughout the pandemic, the school’s biggest event of the year was reinstituted successfully once again.

“We were so happy to welcome our community members to present to the students at Terryville,” said principal Annemarie Sciove. “The students were excited and eager to learn from each professional. It was a memorable experience.”

Above, a Suffolk County police officer poses with students during the event. Photo courtesy Meaghan Reilly

A total of 26 professional presenters met in the school media center for brief refreshments before being escorted to their classrooms by two student ambassadors from each class. 

The halls were full of excited students and enthusiastic Terryville faculty. All students were invited to dress for the occasion. Some students chose to dress for their intended future careers, while others donned their finest attire. 

Each presenter was greeted with a welcome poster before setting up materials and presentations related to their profession. 

Throughout the event, students had a chance to pose questions and try their hands at some of the skills of various trades. To name a few, in landscaper Barry Rose’s demonstration, fifth grade students had the chance to plant seeds. Fourth graders got to try on FDNY bunker gear during their time with fire chief Tom Reilly. 

Inflatable dragons got sent home with third graders who participated in an interactive story time from children’s librarian Debbie Bush of the Comsewogue Public Library. Some students even got to have real casts put on their fingers by Dr. Hayley Queller, internal medicine and sports medicine specialist based in East Setauket.

Presenters consisted of Terryville parents, community members and friends of the Comsewogue School District. There were regulars and newcomers alike. While setting up in the morning, Suffolk County police officer Rob Coffman shared that he’d been presenting at Terryville’s Career Day for nearly 15 years. 

Meanwhile, Town of Brookhaven Councilmember Jonathan Kornreich (D-Stony Brook) expressed his appreciation at being invited for the first time. Other presenters included geology researchers from Stony Brook University, a service dog provider, an MTA traffic controller, dance and martial arts instructors, an ocean researcher, a veterinarian, nurses, actors and local entrepreneurs. 

Also attending were a psychologist, a respiratory therapist, a professional lacrosse player and a health teacher from Comsewogue High School. 

It was a wonderful day, and students are already looking forward to celebrating this tradition again next year.

Meaghan Reilly is the library media specialist at Terryville Road Elementary School.

Port Jefferson School District students with violinist Caroline Campbell (center), Port Jefferson orchestra teacher Vanessa Salzman (left) and Paul Newland, outreach director at Stony Brook University (right). Photo courtesy PJSD

In a partnership with Stony Brook University’s Staller Center for the Arts, Port Jefferson music students experienced a nearly sold-out performance by renowned violinist Caroline Campbell.

Accompanied by Port Jefferson orchestra teacher Vanessa Salzman, the close-to-home musical collaboration engages students with innovative performances, as this concert highlighted. “She is quite a violin superstar, so this was a very special event for us,” Salzman said. 

Campbell, along with pianist Carlos Avila, was an engaging presence on stage and had the audience enthralled with her spectacular performance of virtuoso violin showpieces, from Hollywood film melodies to the music of Sting.

Port Jefferson orchestra students and their families are invited to attend concerts each year at the university, arranged by Salzman and Paul Newland, outreach director at Stony Brook University. Tickets are provided courtesy of Staller Center Outreach Endowment.

“We are extremely grateful to Mr. Newland and the director of The Staller Center, Mr. Alan Inkles, for providing our student musicians this incredible opportunity,” Salzman said, adding, “We were most appreciative of the time [Campbell] took following the performance to interact with our students and share inspiration to continue pursuing their musical journeys.”

Stacy Davidson

Calling all Santa’s and Hanukkah Harry’s or those who just want to help make a difference this holiday season! For over fifteen years, Stacy from Stacy’s Finds/Pattern Finders in Port Jefferson has helped bring magic to underprivileged children in the area, supplying the children with toys and clothing needs. This year Stacy has teamed up with Melissa who runs Give Kids Hope in Port Jefferson. The agency is part of a group of everyday people that answer the clothing needs and toy requests of 1,500 of Long Island’s less fortunate children. 

Melissa at Give Kids Hope has the children’s requested clothing sizes, requirements, and toy requests. You can purchase one item, or fulfill the needs of a child’s entire clothing and toy wish list. Or, adopt a whole family! You may drop off any children’s new clothing and new toys or gift cards for donations at the shop Stacy’s Finds/Pattern Finders at 128 East Main Street Port Jefferson, Thursday through Sundays. For more information, call Melissa at Give Kids Hope 631-538 5287 or Stacy at 631-928-5158.

Wading River School’s Student Council members with advisers Kerryann DeMauro (back, right) and Kellie McGuire (back, left). Photo courtesy SWRCSD

The Wading River School’s Student Council Food Drive was a resounding success. 

Hundreds of pounds of donated nonperishable food items were delivered to local food pantries to help families in need this holiday season. 

Teachers and student council advisers Kerryann DeMauro, Kellie McGuire, and student council members organized and distributed the donations. 

Andrew Muller Primary School held a food drive in which students donated goods and supermarket gift cards. Photo courtesy MPSD

The Miller Place School District lent a helping hand ahead of this Thanksgiving by hosting a series of food drives at various schools. 

Students at Miller Place High School collected 800 canned and packaged goods through a Thanksgiving food drive hosted by the National Honor Society. Students collected canned soup, vegetables, cranberry sauce, stuffing, muffin mix, potatoes and grocery gift cards. The food was distributed to families in need throughout the community. Additional items will be donated to local food pantries.

The School Improvement Team Committee at Laddie A. Decker Sound Beach School donated Thanksgiving meals to seven families in need throughout the community. Photo courtesy MPSD

At North Country Road Middle School, the student government sponsors a yearlong food drive to stock the North Country Road Middle School food pantry. Each Thanksgiving, the donations are used to create Thanksgiving meal packages that they distribute to families throughout Miller Place and Sound Beach.

Laddie A. Decker Sound Beach School’s School Improvement Team (S.I.T.) Committee, run by assistant principal Nicole Farley and fifth grade students, “adopted” seven families in need in the Miller Place and Sound Beach communities. The students brought in items to put together a complete Thanksgiving meal for each family.

Andrew Muller Primary School held a food drive where students donated goods and supermarket gift cards and distributed them to local families in need ahead of the holiday. The school’s hallways were lined with boxes labeled accordingly for students to place their donations. In addition, a local catering business donated fresh turkey for families in need. 

For more information about the Miller Place School District, visit the website at:

Theatre Three presents 'Barnaby Saves Christmas' through Dec. 30. Photo by Peter Lanscombe/Theatre Three Productions, Inc.

Breakfast with Santa

The Magic Circle Nursery School of Union United Methodist Church, 1018 Pulaski Road, East Northport invites the community to its 41st annual Pancake Breakfast with Santa on Saturday, Dec. 3 from 8:30 to 11:30 a.m. Bring the whole family for a real holiday treat filled with fun, food and vendors. Remember your camera for the perfect holiday picture with Santa. Donation of $8 adults, $4 children. Call 631-754-5567. 

Tender Years Treasury

The Town of Smithtown Recreation & Senior Citizens Departments will host the annual Tender Years Treasury, a holiday shopping experience where kids in grades K to 5 can independently shop for family gifts, at the Eugene Cannataro Senior Citizens Center, 420 Middle Country Road, Smithtown on Dec. 3 from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. The festivities include an upscale boutique, cookie decorating, holiday crafts, a homemade quilt raffle, balloon sculptures, free gift wrapping and refreshments courtesy of the PTA. Call 360-7644.

Farmhouse Holiday Ornaments

Benner’s Farm, 56 Gnarled Hollow Road, East Setauket hosts a children’s workshop, Farmhouse Style Holiday Ornaments, on Dec. 3 and Dec. 4 from 10 a.m. to noon. Children ages 4 to 10 are invited to come spend time on the farm making crafts for your holidays! Each child will create and take home several different of their own ornaments, make a snow globe, and take part in a farm tour. $40 per child. To register, call 689-8172 or visit

Santa visits Longwood Estate this event has been canceled

Longwood Estate, 205 Longwood Road Ridge welcomes Santa on Dec. 3 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Enjoy old fashioned sleigh rides, hot cocoa, roasted chestnuts and have family members take photos while visiting with Santa. Don’t forget to bring your letter to Santa. Please include child’s name and address in letter so Santa can respond. INTERFACE program will be collecting new, unwrapped toys for children in need. $5 per child (ages 12 & under) Call 924-1820.

Christmas Party with Santa

Give Kids Hope Thrift & Donation Center, 1506 Main St., Port Jefferson hosts  a Christmas Party with Santa & Mrs. Claus on Dec. 3 from noon to 4 p.m. with a holiday shopping extravaganza, complimentary refreshments, treats and holiday crafts. Bring your letters for Santa. Call 631-538-5287 for more information.

Elf Workshops

Just in time for the holidays, the Long Island Explorium, 101 East Broadway, Port Jefferson presents three Elf Workshops in December from 1 to 2:30 p.m. to make a gift for someone special in your life including   Dec. 3 (make salt dough ornaments); Dec. 10 (make holiday lip balm); and Dec. 17 (create a snow globe). Each workshop is designed so that students learn the science behind their wonderful creations. For children in grades 2 to 6. $30 per child per workshop includes all supplies. To register, call 331-3277 or visit

Holiday Lights Candlemaking

Lighten up! Join the Whaling Museum, 301 Main St.. Cold Spring Harbor for a drop-in family craft workshop, Holiday Lights Candlemaking, on Dec. 4 from 1 to 3 p.m.  Ignite your creativity, roll up your sleeves, and create your own custom, hand-dipped candle with tinted waxes to take home with you. Then design a colorful candleholder for your candle to light up your home during this festive season! Cost is museum admission plus $15 per participant includes all materials. Call 367-3418 for more info.

Family Winter Walk

Sunken Meadow State Park, Sunken Meadow Parkway, Kings Park hosts a Welcome Winter family walk on Dec. 4 from 1:30 p.m. to 3 p.m.  From marshland to forest, join park staff for a stroll through Sunken Meadow State Park as you welcome winter. The temperature should be crisp, so dress for the weather! $4 per person. To register, visit and search #NatureEdventure.

Welcome Winter

Sunken Meadow State Park, Sunken Meadow Parkway, Kings Park presents a Tiny Tots program Welcome Winter on Dec. 8 from 10:30 to 11:30 a.m. Children ages 3 to 5 with their parents will connect with nature through short walks, animal visitors, and crafts. $4 per child. Advance registration required by calling 269-5351.


‘Beauty and the Beast Jr.’

The Smithtown Performing Arts Center, 2 East Main St., Smithtown kicks off the holiday season with Disney’s Beauty and the Beast Jr. from Nov. 19 to Jan. 22 with a special sensory performance on Dec. 2 at 7 p.m. The classic story tells of Belle, a young woman in a provincial town, and the Beast, who is really a young prince trapped under the spell of an enchantress. If the Beast can learn to love and be loved, the curse will end and he will be transformed to his former self. But time is running out. If the Beast does not learn his lesson soon, he and his household will be doomed for all eternity. All seats are $25. To order, visit

‘Barnaby Saves Christmas’

Theatre Three, 412 Main St. Port Jefferson presents the holiday musical Barnaby Saves Christmas from Nov. 19 to Dec. 30 with a sensory sensitive performance on Nov. 20 at 11 a.m. Come join Santa, Barnaby, Franklynne and all of their friends for a wonderful holiday treat. As our littlest elf and his reindeer friend set off on their journey to save Christmas, they meet some new friends along the way and learn the true meaning of Christmas, Hanukkah, and the holiday season. Tickets are $10. To order, call 928-9100 or visit 


A perennial favorite, Frosty returns to the John W. Engeman Theater, 250 Main St., Northport on Saturdays at 11 a.m. and Sundays at 10:30 a.m. from Nov. 26 to Dec. 24 and daily from Dec. 26 to 31. Join Jenny and Frosty on their chilly adventures as they try to save the town of Chillsville from mean old Ethel Pierpot and her evil machine that will melt all the snow. Jenny calls on her Mom, the mayor, and all of you to help her save her home, get Frosty to the North Pole, and make this holiday season a Winter Wonderland for one and all! All seats are $20. To order, call 261-2900 or visit

Rocky Point High School principal Jonathan Hart, senior Vivian Dorr and music teacher Amy Schecher. Photo courtesy RPSD

Rocky Point High School senior Vivian Dorr was selected for the 2023 National Association for Music Education All-Eastern Honor Band. 

In April, Vivian will have the opportunity to rehearse and perform with students from NAfME’s Eastern Division, including New England and Northeastern states, Washington, D.C., and Europe. The All-Eastern rehearsals and performances will take place from Apr. 13-16, 2023. 

“This is an incredible accomplishment,” music teacher Amy Schecher said. “Vivian is a very talented young trombonist and an excellent student. She continues to impress me with her dedication to her academics, music and athletics.”

Center Moriches sputtered against the swarming defense of Shoreham-Wading River during a non-league basketball game on Monday, Nov. 28.

The Wildcats took a 14-point lead by halftime. Seniors Sophie Costello topped the scoring chart for the Wildcats with 17 points, GraceAnn Leonard banked 13 and Colleen Ohrtman netted 8 in the 50-31 home victory. 

The Wildcats notched their second win in as many games with three more non-league contests to go. They’ll face Sachem East, Newfield and William Floyd before league play begins. 

The Wildcats open their league season on Tuesday, Dec. 13, when they host Hampton Bays at 4:30 p.m.

— Photos by Bill Landon