Outdoors Lessons from Long Island's First Inhabitants

Chief among the many important lessons that the first settlers on Long Island learned from the Native Americans was how to make use of the abundant natural resources the island had to offer. The tribes who made their home on Long Island were expert fishermen, whalers, hunters, farmers and gatherers and their descendants still live in harmony with the land in many of the same ways today. They kindly passed that knowledge on to their new neighbors upon their arrival, and the stories of these first interactions between Native Americans and settlers on Long Island were not much different from those of the Wampanoag helping the Pilgrims survive their first harvest season at Plymouth in 1621. We’re all familiar with that tale as the inspiration for the first Thanksgiving Feast.

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The Stranger Things Happening at Montauk's Camp Hero State Park

For anyone that grew up on Long Island, Montauk is a special place. In recent years, the Hamptons crowd has crept in, but most of us still think of Montauk as a lowkey fishing community with great beaches and plenty of family-friendly fun spots (i.e - Puff n Putt, Fudge n Stuff), lovingly referred to as The End. What many people who enjoy Montauk don’t know, though, is that it has a separate past. A dark and mysterious history full of covert government experiments, time travel and an other-dimensional creature named “Junior” that served as the inspiration for the Netflix original series, Stranger Things.

Or at least that’s how the story goes...

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