For most people familiar with the area, Long Island’s north shore conjures images of palatial estates and the serene waters of the Long Island Sound. Members of New York’s cultural elite have been making their homes on the Sound’s beautiful beaches long before F. Scott Fitzgerald drew international acclaim for his portrayal of “East Egg” and “West Egg” (based on Port Washington and Great Neck respectively) in The Great Gatsby. It’s safe to say that the “Gold Coast” has a long and storied history for New Yorkers, but what isn’t spoken about as often is the fact that the area’s geological past runs much deeper and is just as interesting.
Today, Kaaterskill Falls is one of the most popular hikes in the Catskills region. The breathtaking 260 foot cascading waterfall that serves as its calling card is one of the tallest in New York state and standing in its presence evokes an intimate awareness of just how epic and powerful the natural world is. Before it became a hub for extreme selfie seekers, Kaaterskill was the subject of local lure that drew countless artists and other lovers of nature from all of the region.
In terms of iconic Long Island landmarks, the Long Beach boardwalk shares the same hallowed ground as the Montauk Lighthouse or Sagamore Hill. Ever since William Reynolds first orchestrated its construction in 1906-1907, the boardwalk has played a central role in the Long Beach community and served as a destination for New Yorkers looking to spend a nice day at the beach.
Today, the boardwalk remains as integral to the Long Beach economy and way-of-life as ever. It has survived several incarnations, but still draws thousands of people to enjoy its beauty and meet with neighbors.
Here are a few of the key stages of the boardwalk’s history.
Shane Etter is one of the most talented bird photographers on Long Island. His patience and keen eye has resulted in breathtaking shots of some of our Island’s most elusive residents and winter visitors, owls. It’s not uncommon for Shane to spend hours in search of his muse - fighting the biting coastal winds of the frigid south shore or navigating the woods in search of these beautiful birds.
Those willing to brave the cold have seen an increase in owl sightings on Long Island over the past few years. For this month’s blog, we are highlighting Shane’s beautiful owl photography from around Long Island and giving some background on his incredible subjects.
Montauk Point + Orient Point Lighthouses As one would expect from an island located just outside a major port, lighthouses have played an important role in the history of Long Island. Since 1796, over twenty five lighthouses have been built on Long Island, each with their own unique story. On the north shore, lighthouses helped sailors navigate the jagged rocks and abrupt shoals of the Sound. On the south side of the island, lighthouses were often the first thing European immigrants saw when they reached their new home. The Keep Me Where The Light Is series will look at two of Long Island’s lighthouses in each part. The goal is to provide a better view of the underwater geography of Long Island, as well as, the history of some of our most beloved historical structures and how to enjoy them today.
In the dead of winter, very few traditions help cope with the cold better than snuggling up by a fire, admiring a beautifully decorated Christmas Tree.
In the spirit of Christmas, this article will discuss Long Island’s evergreens at Christmas time from three angles: (1) Christmas past - The Long Island Pine Barrens, (2) Christmas Present - The environmental benefits of real trees and where to cut your own on Long Island and (3) Christmas future - How to recycle your Christmas tree.
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.
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.
Daniel Imperial is a rising photographer from Port Jefferson. He excels in a lot of different photography environments from the natural world of Long Island to the urban landscapes of New York City. He was kind enough to answer some questions for us ranging from the craft of photography to some of his favorite places to shoot on Long Island. Here is our interview.
Most Long Island residents that spend anytime on the coasts have been lucky enough to catch a glimpse of an Osprey. Whether its returning to their nest on Reynolds Channel from a successful hunt out at sea in Long Beach or circling over the Long Island Sound, the seahawk is a majestic sight to behold.
As they prepare to make their way down south for the colder months, here is some history on one of Long Island’s most beloved summer residents.