Articles by

Barbaraellen Koch

01/10/14 3:15pm

BARBARALLEN KOCH PHOTO | The main characters, George and Mary Bailey, are played by Alex Bowe and Shannon McAlister.

The Riverhead Blue Masques are presenting “It’s A Wonderful Life, A Live Radio Play” beginning tonight at 7 p.m. Additional performances are 7 p.m. Saturday and 2 p.m. Sunday in the Charles Cardona Auditorium at Riverhead High School.

The performance is under the co-direction of music teacher Dena Tishim and English teacher Jessica Guadagnino.

The performance is inspired by the classic American film of the same title. It is performed as a 1940s live radio broadcast in front of a studio audience. Fifty students divided into two ensembles will perform this weekend. The actors in the photographs below will be performing Saturday night.

The main characters, George and Mary Bailey, are played by Alex Bowe and Shannon McAlister, respectively. The angel, Clara, is played by Kaitlyn Jehle and the superintendent of angels by Jesse Goodale. The announcer Freddie Fillmore is played by Kamaria Harris. Musical accompaniment on the piano is Jessica Sisti.

Tickets are $8 in advance, $10 at door and $5 for seniors. For more information, contact Dena Tishim at 369-6741.

01/10/14 10:40am
BARBARAELLEN KOCH PHOTO | Store manager (far right) Christopher Marinos cuts the ribbon as customers waited outside Friday morning.

BARBARAELLEN KOCH PHOTO | Store manager (far right) Christopher Marinos cuts the ribbon as customers waited outside Friday morning.

Discount grocery retailer Aldi opened at 9 a.m. Friday morning after a brief ceremonial ribbon cutting as around 50 customers waited outside in the cold. It is the fourth store to open in the Route 58 shopping center where Dick’s Sporting Goods, Five Below and Christmas Tree Shops is located. It is also the fourth store to open in Suffolk County of the privately held company, which came stateside in 1973 and has 1,300 store in 32 states.

The 18,000 square-foot store has five aisles which are open and bright with large signage and grocery items are stocked by case to make it more efficient. One of the aisles is stocked with non-grocery discount items which vice  president Bruce Persohn called “here today gone tomorrow” sale items. The store is open from 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday to Saturday and 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Sunday.

District manager Matt Schapiro said that they are in the middle of a coast-to-coast expansion, locally with stores in Lake Grove, Lindenhurst and Bay Shore. They are currently eyeing a location in Patchogue based on customer response. “We look to locate where there is anybody who needs groceries and likes to save money is a great customer as far as I’m concerned.”

Bridget and Frank Sears of Houston flew up just for the opening. His parents live in Riverhead and they shop at some of the five Aldi stores at home. They said that they love the shopping experience and discounts of the grocery chain.

BARBARAELLEN KOCH PHOTO | A customer grabs some goods at the Aldi opening on Friday morning.

BARBARAELLEN KOCH PHOTO | Gorg Westermann of Wading River, formerly of Solatu, German, grabs some goods at the Aldi opening on Friday morning.

12/06/13 9:00am

BARBARAELLEN KOCH PHOTO | The Big Duck all lit up for the holidays.

Suffolk County Legislator Jay Schneiderman quizzed the crowd at the 25th annual Big Duck lighting ceremony Thursday evening in Flanders. He discovered that the couple hundred people in attendance came from all around the East End, from the North and South Forks out to Nassau County — there was even a family from Switzerland.

For the 10th consecutive year, the Riverhead Middle School Show Choir, under the direction of Nadine Greenberg, sang holiday songs with “ducky” twists on the words such as “Have a Wacky Quacky Big Duck” to the tune of “Have a Holly Jolly Christmas.”

The Flanders Fire Department, with Chief Todd Ryan, escorted Santa Claus to the Big Duck Ranch via fire truck, sirens blaring, where he flicked the switch on the lights with the help of a group of children and then stayed around to listen to Christmas wishes.

11/28/13 7:52am

BARBARAELLEN KOCH PHOTO | Culinary students Kristina Caschetta (left) Anastasia DeRosa (center) and Alexa Cimino with the carved up roasted turkeys that were prepared for the Dominican Sisters Wednesday morning.

Suffolk County Community College’s Culinary School in downtown Riverhead partnered for the fourth year with the Dominican Sisters Family Health Service to cook and prepare about 140 dinners for long-term patients and home-bound seniors of the Dominican Sisters of Hampton Bays.

Local businesses on the North and South Forks teamed up to raise money for the feast.

Chef instructor Vinny Winn worked with about 40 students and high school volunteers in the culinary’s kitchen to prepare the meal. They cooked 15 turkeys weighing 15 pounds each, 100 pounds each of mashed and sweet potatoes, seven gallons of gravy and 20 pounds of stuffing. There were also rolls, cranberry sauce and 24 apple pies and 24 pumpkin pies.

Local elementary schools students made and decorated trays for the meals.

11/21/13 1:06pm
BARBARAELLEN KOCH PHOTO Ian Byrne of Baiting Hollow as Max Prince (left), Johnny Tumminello of Jamesport as Lucas Brickman (center) and Danielle Allen of Riverhead as Carol Wyman in Act I Scene I of Neil's Simon's 'Laughter on the 23rd Floor'.

BARBARAELLEN KOCH PHOTO Ian Byrne of Baiting Hollow as Max Prince (left), Johnny Tumminello of Jamesport as Lucas Brickman (center) and Danielle Allen of Riverhead as Carol Wyman in Act I Scene I of Neil’s Simon’s ‘Laughter on the 23rd Floor’.

The McGann-Mercy Theatre Company kicks off its production of ‘Laughter on the 23rd Floor’ tonight at 7:30 p.m., the first of three performances of the Neil Simon play.

The play is inspired by Mr. Simon’s early career working as a junior copywriter for a variety show in the 1950s.

The play will run from Thursday, Nov. 21st through Saturday, Nov. 23rd in the school auditorium, the show starts at 7:30 pm. Tickets are $8 per person and are sold at the door. For more information on Laughter on the 23rd Floor, call 631.727.5900, ext. 310.

Click through the slideshow to see some pictures from the play’s rehearsal.

11/16/13 10:00am

BARBARAELLEN KOCH PHOTO | East End Arts gallery director helps customer Craig Rosenberg pick out a wool scarf for a friend Friday morning on the first day the boutique was open. Scarf is made by Elizabeth Palmer-Buchtman of Pawling New York.

Handmade ornaments, one-of-a-kind jewelry and unique knits and crafts will be among the gifts on display at the East End Arts’ Annual Holiday Gift Boutique. An opening reception will be held today from noon to 5 p.m. in the East End Arts Gallery in Riverhead.

The event is free, open to the public and refreshments will be served.

The gallery will feature a large selection of hand-crafted heirloom ornaments. There are art-ful gifts at a wide variety of prices. All the items in the boutqie are unique creations by East End Arts member-artists. This year, 45 local artists are participating.

Guests can meet the artists at today’s reception. The boutique runs through Dec. 22. For more information, click here.

11/12/13 11:01am
BARBARAELLEN KOCH PHOTO | Segulls fight for real estate space along the Peconic River Tuesday.

BARBARAELLEN KOCH PHOTO | Segulls fight for real estate space along the Peconic River Tuesday.

The Riverhead area and much of eastern Long Island saw the season’s first dusting of snow Tuesday morning.

According to the National Weather Service, a cold front that swept through the area in the early morning hours resulted in a mix of rain and snow — and eventually just snow — falling over the region.

The snow persisted through the morning commute, from about 6 a.m., and tapered off about 10 a.m.

(Read more below.)

And while Nov. 12 might seem like an early date for snow, with the official start of winter still 40 days away, recent years have seen even earlier first snowfalls.

Nov. 8, 2011, marked a messy commute for Long Island motorists as well, with sleet and snow flurries falling over the area.

That figure was bested by an Oct. 29, 2011 nor’easter, which resulted in a significant amount of snowfall and a rare “white Halloween” two days later.