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Three Village Community Trust

Earlier this year, Hope Kinney, left, shown with Herb Mones, Three Village Community Trust president, was able to secure a $4,000 grant from her employer, Investors Bank, to help restore the immigrant factory houses in Setauket. Photo from Three Village Community Trust

Hope Kinney is a familiar face in the Three Village area.

Hope Kinney collecting donations for The Salvation Army. File photo

Whether at an event organized by the Rotary Club of Stony Brook, Three Village Community Trust, local chamber of commerce or working with students and businesses with the Three Village Industry Advisory Board, residents will see Kinney there with a smile on her face, scurrying around to help out.

For her dedication to her community, Kinney is one of TBR News Media’s People of the Year.

The admiration is mutual. Suffolk County Legislator Kara Hahn (D-Setauket) nominated Kinney for Suffolk County Woman of Distinction in the 5th Legislative District in 2020.

“Hope Kinney’s impact is ingrained within many of the layers that comprise our community,” the legislator wrote in an email. “From her highly visible leadership role with, and on behalf of, local business to her continual support of organizations committed to societal improvement, Hope is dedicated to serving neighbors and community with purpose. There is so much to honor Hope Kinney for, and I believe, this recognition translates our thankful community’s gratitude into celebration of her uplifting and selfless spirit.”

For years, Kinney has been involved with the now-defunct Three Village Kiwanis Club and Rotary Club of Stony Brook. She became the president of the latter in the summer of 2020 and took on the challenge of organizing club events while navigating the COVID-19 pandemic. She scheduled Zoom meetings, and as more businesses were able to open up planned socially distanced lunches. She also put together a virtual online fundraiser for the Port Jefferson-based nonprofit Give Kids Hope, which provides food and clothing for local residents in need.

For the last three years, the rotary club has organized the Three Village Holiday Electric Parade. During the pandemic, due to COVID-19 restrictions, a drive-thru version of the event was held at Ward Melville High School. 

Judi Wallace, treasurer of the rotary club, credits Kinney for keeping the organization going during the pandemic. She described Kinney as “a wonderful person” and “super community oriented.”

“Three Village means everything to her,” Wallace said.

Kinney is always looking for ways the rotary can assist individuals or groups who have a need in the area, Wallace said.

She added, “Hope is always thinking and always coming up with great ideas in order to do things in the community.”

Wallace said it was Kinney who brought back the 5K race organized by rotary and The Bench in Stony Brook.

“She just comes up with an idea and follows through, and that’s the most important thing in the world,” Wallace said.

The same year Kinney became president of the rotary club, she joined the Three Village Community Trust board and is currently its treasurer.

Herb Mones, president of TVCT, said it’s refreshing and a big help to a volunteer-based organization such as TVCT to have someone such as Kinney who is always ready to chip in when asked.

“She is always the first to say, ‘I can do that,’ and helps and takes on different responsibilities when the need is there,” he said. “She does it in an upbeat, happy way of feeling that she is contributing and helping the community.”

Hope Kinney standing in front of the Rotary Club truck in Hicksville about to receive 4,000 masks in 2020. Photo from Hope Kinney

She was recently able to secure a $4,000 grant through her employer, Investors Bank, which will go toward the restoration of the immigrant factory houses in Setauket. Kinney has also spearheaded the trust’s gala in November, which Mones said is the most successful fundraiser for TVCT.

“She’s always got an ear to the community and understands things that are going on and that becomes very helpful in so many different ways,” Mones said.

Kinney juggles all her volunteer roles while working full-time as the branch manager at Investors Bank, formerly Gold Coast Bank, at its Setauket location on Route 25A.

Kinney started her banking career at Capital One in 2004. When the bank had layoffs in 2018, she was recruited by John Tsunis, Gold Coast’s founder, as branch manager.

In a 2020 interview with The Village Times Herald, Kinney talked about balancing her career and volunteerism with spending time with her husband, Joseph, and three children Justin, Michael and Rachel. To handle all her responsibilities, she said she tries to stay organized and not get overwhelmed.

“I take it day by day,” Kinney said. “I put it on the calendar, and I’m able to look at the calendar and then I go day by day … I guess that’s the secret — work with each day.”

New York State Assemblyman Steve Englebright (D-Setauket) has held elective office continuously since 1983. Englebright’s long tenure now comes to a close. 

In a tight state election for District 4 last month, Englebright narrowly lost to his Republican Party challenger Ed Flood (R-Port Jefferson). In an exit interview, the outgoing assemblyman reflected upon his pathway into government, the legislative victories throughout that time and the meaning of public service.

The road to politics

Growing up, the young Englebright spent much of his time in libraries. He found refuge in books, which satiated his curiosity and “compelling interest in how things worked.” He also nourished a lifelong fascination with history through those hours devoted to learning.

Leading up to his first run for office, Englebright said he was deeply disturbed by the environmental degradation characteristic of those times. The “almost daily reports” of overdevelopment and sprawl, oil spills and drinking water contamination, each had left a deep and abiding impression on him.

‘The proper role of government is to protect the people who sent you.’ — Steve Englebright

He was teaching geology at Stony Brook University when he began considering public life. “I realized that drinking water was the first limiting factor for the continued well-being of this Island, and I was not really seeing any meaningful public policy growing out of the reports of chaos,” he said.

The late professor Hugh Cleland, from the SBU Department of History, would prove to be the catalyst behind Englebright’s ascent to politics. Cleland sat down with him at the campus student union. For several hours, the two discussed a possible bid for a Suffolk County legislative seat.

“This was a really serious and credible and well thought-out request that he was making,” Englebright said. “So I didn’t just wave it off. I gave it some thought and, sure enough, I found myself saying, ‘What’s next?’” 

After that meeting, Englebright decided to run and was elected to the county Legislature in 1983. He won election after election for the next four decades.

County Legislature

Upon entering the county Legislature, Englebright simultaneously confronted an array of environmental dilemmas. He described the defunct Long Island Lighting Company, the precursor to today’s Long Island Power Authority, as “at that time wanting to build a small galaxy of nuclear power plants on Long Island.” He stressed that the utility company was favoring its shareholder interests at the residents’ expense. 

Englebright successfully championed, along with a grassroots movement of LILCO ratepayers, against the construction of the Shoreham Nuclear Power Plant and other nuclear plants to follow. Their resistance efforts were grounded primarily in the risks associated with evacuation.

Another major policy issue during his early political career was the protection of groundwater and surface waters in Suffolk County. “I pushed successfully for the largest county-level open space program in the nation,” he said. He was one of the earliest critics against sprawl. 

As a county legislator, he initiated the first plastics ban in the nation. Though ahead of his time on the issue, he admitted that not enough has been done elsewhere to counteract the problem, which he said “has exploded into a worldwide catastrophe.”

He sponsored legislation excising a small fee on hotel and motel rooms, considering the measure as a fee on tourists allowing for their continued enjoyment of the area through reinvestment into the county’s most attractive destinations.

“If you wonder why county Legislator [Kara] Hahn [D-Setauket] is able to have some discretion to provide funding to Gallery North or the Reboli Center, that funding is coming from the hotel/motel room fee,” he said.

State Assembly

New York State Assemblyman Steve Englebright (D-Setauket). Photo from North Island Photography and Films

As a state assemblyman, Englebright quickly picked up where he left off, building upon and expanding his county policies at the state level. Among his earliest actions was the Long Island Pine Barrens Protection Act, a state law ensuring the preservation of the Pine Barrens as open space.

He sponsored some of the original laws in New York state related to solar power and other renewables. “In my first year in the state Legislature, I was successfully pushing for legislation that had paved the way for the electronic age,” he said.

Englebright added that the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act was the most crucial legislation he ever sponsored. This ambitious law aims to reduce statewide greenhouse gas emissions by 85% from 1990 levels by 2050.

Englebright also successfully led a statewide ban on purse seining, a highly efficient fishing technique responsible for the depletion of menhaden, or bunker, in New York’s surrounding waters.

“The marine world all depends on having this abundant fish at the base of the food chain,” the assemblyman said. Purse seining allowed large-scale fishing operations to collect “whole schools of menhaden, millions and millions of fish.”

One of the fondest moments throughout his tenure happened just last summer. On a boat trip off the coast of Montauk Point during early morning hours, the sun rising off the horizon line, he witnessed entire schools of menhaden beneath the water.

“The sea was boiling with fish,” he said. “Menhaden, they were back by the billions.”

Reminiscent of his earliest years in libraries, historic preservation would be a significant point of emphasis for Englebright. “I’m very proud of the many properties that are preserved, the historic sites.” Such sites either preserved or to be preserved include Patriots Rock and Roe Tavern in Setauket and William Tooker House in Port Jefferson, among many others.

Even in his final days in office, Englebright made historic breakthroughs. Though his reelection bid was unsuccessful, Englebright rejoiced in yet another major victory for environmental sustainability. Last month, New Yorkers overwhelmingly approved a recent $4.2 billion environmental bond act, a multiyear investment in clean water, air, wildlife and the environment.

Reflections from his community

During his extended time in political service, Englebright has worked alongside countless public representatives at all levels of government. He maintained “they’re not all scoundrels,” adding that many were “superb public servants.”

In a series of written statements and phone interviews, several public representatives and close Englebright associates and friends had an opportunity to weigh in on his legacy of service and commitment to his community. 

Englebright “proved himself to be an environmental pioneer, a champion for the causes and concerns of his constituents and an unflinching fighter for the communities he served,” Hahn said. “For those of us who served in elected office with him during his tenure, irrespective of political persuasion or level of government, Steve proved himself to be a friend and mentor who embodied the role of effective leadership in the lives of those we represent.”

 As recently as Dec. 6, the Three Village Community Trust honored the assemblyman by renaming the Greenway trail as The Steve Englebright Setauket to Port Jefferson Station Greenway.

Port Jefferson Mayor Margot Garant commented on the characteristics that set Englebright apart from other politicians. She said his scientific background and wide-ranging interests added depth to his political persona.

 “He’s a unique legislator in that he’s so well rounded in those other areas and that he’s not just focused on the hard line of the law,” she said. “He’s involved with his community, he’s approachable, he’s caring, he’s kind. He’s a very unique representative, and we’re going to miss him sorely.”

 Like Englebright, Port Jefferson village trustee Rebecca Kassay worked in environmental advocacy before entering government. She discussed Englebright’s ongoing extended producer responsibility legislation, which would require producers of packaging materials, rather than taxpayers, to be responsible for managing post-consumer packaging material waste.

 “This can be a step toward addressing a multitude of waste management, environmental and financial issues facing municipalities and individuals,” Kassay said. “I hope to see the assemblyman’s colleagues and successor continue advocating for policies with long-term solutions,” adding, “Englebright is the type of commonsense representative we’d like to see more of in government.”

 In a joint statement, George Hoffman and Laurie Vetere of the Setauket Harbor Task Force reflected upon Englebright’s importance to local harbors.

 “In his time as our state representative, Steve Englebright never forgot the importance of the harbor,” they said. “Assemblyman Englebright found ways to secure needed dollars from Albany to help the task force in its mission of protecting water quality and the sustainability of Setauket and Port Jefferson harbors.” 

Joan Nickeson, community liaison of the Port Jefferson Station/Terryville Chamber of Commerce, credited Englebright for the continued flourishment of her area. She said the hotel/motel tax he sponsored had enabled the chamber to conduct its annual summer concert series at the Train Car Park.

 “Assemblyman Englebright has continued to be a friend of the chamber by supporting our local businesses and attending our ribbon-cutting ceremonies,” she said.

 Within those 40 years, countless other acts and initiatives have come to fruition with Englebright’s assistance. Reflecting on his time in public service, he outlined his political doctrine.

 “The proper role of government is to protect the people who sent you,” he said. “If you keep your eye on the prize, you can achieve things for the people who invested their trust in you.” 

 On the role of the public representative, he added, “Use the office as a bully pulpit, speak truth to power, identify things that are wrong and right them, and treat the office as an opportunity to do good.”

 For wielding his office as a force of good for four decades, TBR News Media dedicates Steve Englebright as honorary 2022 Person of the Year.

John Turner

The Three Village Community Trust’s 18th annual Fall Gala will be held on Wednesday, Nov. 16 at 7 p.m. at the Old Field Club. 

The Fall Gala is the Trust’s most important source of funding to “Protect the Places You Love” and encourages everyone in the community to attend. As an all-volunteer and a not for profit organization, the Trust depends on the Gala to support its many projects throughout 2023. 

“Study of Sky over the Three Village Inn” by Christian White

This year’s special honoree for the evening will be noted author and lecturer John Turner, widely recognized as one of the most respected and influential voices for the protection of our natural environment. Turner is co-founder of the Long Island Pine Barrens Society, the Conservation Chair of the Four Harbors Audubon Society, and an active member of numerous environmental advocacy organizations. 

Every Trust site benefits by this event: Patriots Rock Historic Site, The Immigrant Factory Worker Houses, The Hawkins Homestead, the Smith/deZafra House, the Tyler House, the Setauket to Port Jefferson Station Greenway, the Steven D. Matthews Preserve and the Bruce House. Additionally, this event helps fund the Dr. Robert deZafra Acquisition Fund — helping the Trust to purchase additional historical properties in the future. By attending you will be helping to preserve and protect some of our area’s most treasured sites. 

There will be live music by Carl Safina and Moment’s Notice, a light buffet, an art raffle for a Christian White painting titled “Study of Sky over the Three Village Inn,” spectacular raffle baskets, and much more. 

Tickets to the event, which are $75 per person, can be purchased on the Trust’s website, www.threevillagecommunitytrust.org. For more information, call 631-942-4558, or email [email protected]

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Herb Mones, right, announced the Three Village Community Trust’s new challenge grant in honor of Maria Hoffman. Her husband, George, above left, was on hand for the announcement on Sept. 27. Photo above by Rita J. Egan

Three Village Community Trust members gathered in Setauket for a special announcement Sept. 27.

Maria Hoffman. Photo by Robert Reuter

Standing in front of the Bruce House headquarters on Main Street, TVCT president Herb Mones announced the kickoff of the Maria Hoffman $50,000 Challenge Grant campaign. Hoffman was a land trust member and an aide to state Assemblyman Steve Englebright (D-Setauket).

Mones said nearly $10,000 had already been raised toward the goal. A $50,000 matching grant was acquired from the state by Englebright earlier this year, and Mones said the funds raised would go toward the restoration of historical properties in the Three Village community and the land trust’s operational costs. 

Mones said Hoffman “impacted so much of what we have inside of this community on a continual basis, and provided the services that often we needed through a legislative office. She did it with grace, she did it with dignity and she always did it quietly.”

Englebright described Hoffman as “the right-hand side of my brain.”

“I think it’s appropriate that we recognize her and remember her to continue her legacy,” the assemblyman said, adding she was the “brains behind the whole operation” at his office.

He also talked about Hoffman’s sense of place that she memorialized through her work and with her photography and artwork, too.

Hoffman’s husband, George, was also in attendance. He said his wife loved the Three Village area and Setauket Harbor. The Bruce House was a spot Maria Hoffman always cherished. When the home was up for sale before they met in 2009, she was looking for a house but knew it would be too small if she were to marry one day. He added she was also excited when the immigrant worker homes were moved to the location from their former site near the Setauket firehouse down the street.

In addition to the state matching grant, Investors Bank recently gave TVCT a separate $4,000 grant. These funds will go toward restoring the immigrant worker houses which need work, such as replacing deteriorated exterior siding and damaged interior wallboard.

Up next for Gallery North in Setauket is Home · Land · Nature, a selection of recent works by artist Han Qin, on view from Sept. 29 to Nov. 13. An opening reception will be held on Thursday, Sept. 29, from 6  to 8 p.m. 

Artist Han Qin

The solo exhibition features small, medium, and large cyanotypes, woodblock prints, and drawings that explore concepts of home and the process of relocation. 

Drawing from her own experience of migration, Qin renders moments of passing through, of conflict, of getting together, and of migrating into form and image. Her artwork incorporates poignant, structural elements of Confucian philosophy, conveying the fluidity of identity and its evolution.

There is a sense of displacement, chaos, triumph, and eventual replanting in Home · Land · Nature. Qin translates social phenomena and movement — among groups and individuals — into works which incorporate traditional cyanotype, woodblock printing, 3D scanning, and digital printing methods. 

‘The Triumph of Wanderers’ by Han Qin

“One of the elements that excites me about the exhibition is that while Han’s work draws on the emotions of her own lived experience of migration, they are universal in their ability to connect with viewers. … The works silently call viewers to explore them and ask where they themselves are or have been among these images,” said curator Kate Schwarting.

In collaboration with the Three Village Community Trust (TVCT), Gallery North will also present an outdoor projection event featuring Han Qin’s multimedia work at the TVCT’s Immigrant Worker Houses, located behind the Bruce House at 148 Main Street in Setauket, on Saturday, Oct. 22 at 7 p.m. This projection event will highlight the important experiences of all immigrant groups throughout the history of the Three Village community.

Gallery North will also host an ArTalk with Han Qin on Saturday, Nov. 5 at 6 pm. 

Generously sponsored by Jefferson’s Ferry, bld Architecture, and Suffolk County’s Department of Economic Development and Planning, the exhibition, reception and affiliated events are free and open to the public.

Gallery North, 90 North Country Road, Setauket, is open Wednesdays to Saturdays from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., and Sundays from 1 to 5 p.m. For more information, call 631-751-2676 or visit www.gallerynorth.org.

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The Three Village Community Trust hosted its 7th annual Chicken Hill Country Picnic and Barbecue Aug. 20 on the grounds of the Setauket Rubber Factory Workers Houses at the trust’s headquarters on Main Street.

The rubber factory, which produced items such as shoes, boots and rain gear, was once located near the property. The small houses provided homes for the Eastern European and Russian immigrants that worked at the factory. The area surrounding the site soon became known as Chicken Hill.

The nearly 100 attendees at the Aug. 20 event were treated to corn on the cob, hamburgers, chicken dogs and more, while being entertained by musician, author and storyteller Johnny Cuomo. The afternoon also included tours of the factory workers houses that were built in the late 1800s and Three Village history talks.

“We hosted many young newcomers to the Three Villages who are interested in its history and culture,” Herb Mones, TVCT president, said in an email. “It was so good to see that Chicken Hill is no longer ‘a community lost in time.’”

“Today, these small, rustic houses are a visual reminder of the hopes, dreams and struggles of so many of our nation’s immigrants,” Mones said.

Proceeds from the event will go toward restoration of the houses and other TVCT historical properties. The trust will also use funds for the upkeep of the Setauket-Port Jefferson Station Greenway Trail.

Photo by Michael Rosengard
Tickets are on now on sale!

The Three Village Community Trust invites the community to its 7th annual Chicken Hill Country Picnic and Barbecue on the lawn of the Bruce House, 148 Main St., Setauket on the grounds of the Setauket Rubber Factory Houses on Saturday, Aug. 20 from 4 to 7 p.m.

A fun, family event to celebrate the history of the Three Villages, participants will enjoy hamburgers, hot dogs, corn on the cob, chicken dogs, drinks, art raffle and raffle baskets.

Headlining the entertainment for the afternoon will be Johnny Cuomo, the popular musician, author, and storyteller. Johnny has established himself as a distinctive voice of America’s tunes, Irish songs, folk music, and minstrels. The Trust is thrilled to host Johnny Cuomo in the heart of the Three Villages – at Chicken Hill. There will also be house tours and talks about the history and importance of a ‘community lost in time’ – Chicken Hill.

All proceeds from the event will go to the ongoing restoration of the Factory Worker Houses, and the other historical properties of the Trust, as well as the upkeep of the Setauket to Port Jefferson Station Greenway.

Tickets are $25 in advance, $30 at the door, $5 kids 5 to 12, under age 5 free. Bring seating. Rain date is Sunday, Aug. 21.

Online sales at: threevillagecommunitytrust.org or mail a check to TVCT, PO Box 2596, Setauket, NY 11733

Need more info? Call H. Mones at 631-942-4558, or write to [email protected], or [email protected]


 The three Factory Worker Houses at 148 Main Street in Setauket were built in the late 1800’s and represent an important part of the American immigrant experience.

Near this site, the Setauket Rubber Factory operated as Long Island’s leading producer of domestic goods.  Hundreds of workers helped manufacture such items as shoes, boots and rain gear.

Immigrants arriving in New York City from Eastern Europe and Russia were offered steady work and inexpensive housing at the factory. These new Americans came to this area in the hopes of a better life, although the work was difficult, conditions poor and the pay low.

Housing was provided by the factory in the form of the modest “factory houses.” Each of these “company houses” has essentially two rooms – one room on the first floor and one on the second floor. Several families would crowd into the houses to afford the monthly rent payments. The surrounding area – a half mile in each direction – came to be known as “Chicken Hill.”

Yet, despite the poor working and living conditions, the immigrants helped build a vibrant community. By 1881, by there were enough Irish-Catholics in Setauket to hold a St. Patrick’s Day Parade, and build the community’s first Catholic Church on Main Street. The Jewish population, recruited from Ellis Island, was large enough to support a  synagogue – the first on Long Island – called Agudas Achim or “Good Fellowship.

Saved from demolition due to the efforts of NYS Assemblyman Steven Englebright, the Three Village Community Trust and dedicated community volunteers, the “Immigrant Worker Factory Houses” were moved to this site for the purpose of preservation and restoration.

Today, these small, rustic houses are a visual reminder of the hopes, dreams and struggles of so many of our nation’s immigrants.

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Members of the Three Village Community Trust, left, hand out lemonade to attendees of the Setauket Memorial Day Parade May 30. Photo from Three Village Community Trust

By Chris Mellides

Founded in 2003, the Three Village Community Trust has been a staple in the community and despite the rough times wrought on by the pandemic, the land trust’s members and community volunteers remain optimistic for the future.

Since 2020 onward, COVID-19 has been a thorn in the sides of many businesses and nonprofits on Long Island and elsewhere. Despite state-sanctioned shutdowns, through a dedicated volunteer membership, this not-for-profit organization has continued its community-centric efforts to preserve and beautify historical sites Three Villagers can admire in the area. 

Members of the Three Village Community Trust, left, hand out lemonade to attendees at the Setauket Memorial Day Parade May 30. Photo from Three Village Community Trust

During the pandemic when things were at their worst, TVCT voted in one of its founders, Herb Mones, to take over from longtime president Cynthia Barnes. 

Financial manager, Greg de Bruin, has been a contributor to the trust for years. “I became truly aware of how much responsibility the trust has assumed and how much it could affect our community for the good,” he said. “Herb Mones, who was installed as the new president at [the March 2021] meeting, happens to be very good at getting those points across,” de Bruin added. 

The TVCT properties include the Setauket to Port Jefferson Station Greenway, Patriots Rock Historic Site, the Factory Worker Houses (also known as the Rubber Factory Houses), the Hawkins Homestead, the Smith/de Zafra House, the Bruce House headquarters, the Stephen D. Matthews Preserve and the Tyler House, according to Mones. 

When asked how the trust was able to stick it out during the unforeseen global pandemic, Mones said, “The trust had to be creative.”

“We developed a number of unique online events to connect with our membership, and at the same time raise revenues ‘to keep the lights on,’” the president said. “Many of our properties are under renovation, with large price tags to do the correct historical renovations. And utilities, insurance and maintenance services are a big lift.” 

Treasurer Hope Kinney said that she helps de Bruin in making sure the bills are paid the for the properties that mean a lot to the Three Village area community. 

“The trust is amazing, they do so much for our community,” Kinney said. “We preserve many properties and help beautify the Three Village community. We have many events to help raise money for all these things we do.”

Among these fundraising projects, the trust headed up a relief effort for the people of Ukraine by asking residents to donate.  The TVCT also recently installed sunflower art at its different properties throughout the area to show support for the Ukrainian people and to raise awareness of the crisis in that country. 

De Bruin said that “obtaining funding to execute our mission is a never-ending effort. We receive funding from government grants at all levels and from private donors in the community. To get people or agencies to contribute, we have to show them that we have a worthy mission, that we have plans to accomplish the goals of the trust, and that we are succeeding in executing them.”

Aside from receiving support from the local community, the trust has recently secured a $50,000 matching grant from state Assemblyman Steve Englebright (D-Setauket). 

“The recently announced grant from the assemblyman is so critical to us,” Mones said. “We have worked very hard to emerge out of the pandemic, and this grant will be important to assure our sustainability in the future. We are honored to be the recipient of the grant and are deeply appreciative.”

The number of projects that have culminated thus far in the trust’s almost-20 years history has been impressive. Kinney said that her favorite restoration project was the Rubber Factory Houses: “We have been using the properties for many events recently and it is so beautiful.”

Sporting new gutters this spring, with newly painted windows, doors and trims, the Rubber Factory Houses are a rustic collection of three wooden buildings that were restored by community volunteers.

According to Mones, an electric feed was added to bring electric to the structures. An electrical panel, outside receptacles, outside lighting and some indoor light switches and receptacles were also added.

The houses were relocated in 2011 to the Bruce House grounds from the Setauket Fire District property on nearby Old Town Road. 

“The trust hopes to expand its community outreach and continue its momentum in ‘protecting the place you love,’” Mones said. “We see the trust as a friend, partner and leader in helping to make the Three Villages a very special place.”

For more information on the Three Village Community Trust, visit www.threevillagecommunitytrust.org.

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By Herb Mones

As the Ukrainian humanitarian crisis continues to unfold, it is important for Three Village residents to reflect on our area’s historical ties to the peoples of Eastern Europe. 

In the late 1800s, many Eastern Europeans fled persecution to seek a better life in the United States. A number of these immigrants came to Setauket to find work at a local manufacturing plant that would eventually employ as many as five hundred men, women and children. Small “Factory Houses” were built by the company’s owners for the arriving workforce. Three of these historic Factory Houses are at 148 Main St. in Setauket, where they are undergoing restoration by the Three Village Community Trust. 

Most know the sunflower is the national flower of Ukraine. Today, as the Ukrainian crisis deepens, it symbolizes hope, determination and solidarity for a free and independent people. 

The Three Village Community Trust, in support of the Ukrainian people and to raise awareness of the crisis, has installed sunflower art at its different properties throughout the area. 

Now, the Trust is heading up a relief effort for the people of Ukraine by asking residents to donate. 

All proceeds will go to Ukrainian aid organizations vetted through Charity Navigator. People can donate at the Trust’s website: threevillagecommunitytrust.org, or by mailing a check payable to TVCT-Ukrainian Relief, c/o Three Village Community Trust, PO Box 2596, Setauket, NY 11733. 

Ukrainians helped build our community, now it’s time to consider helping Ukraine.

Give some thought to sunflowering your front yard or business. Help spread sunflowers to the entire community and the world.

Herb Mones is the president of the Three Village Community Trust. 

Photo from Three Village Community Trust

Held with the support of the Three Village School District, the Three Village Community Trust’s first annual Winter Coat Drive is now underway through Dec. 16. This is a wonderful opportunity for residents to help those in need by dropping off a winter coat at the Trust’s headquarters at the Bruce House, 148 Main Street, Setauket. The Trust encourages community members to simply place their donation of clean winter coats on the front porch. Coats will then be delivered to local families. For more information, call  631-428-6851.