07/24/14 2:00pm
07/24/2014 2:00 PM
LI Cares started offering free breakfast for kids under age 18 through the end of August. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)

LI Cares started offering free breakfast for kids under age 18 through the end of August. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)

A 2010 study by food bank L.I. Cares showed that 39 percent of the 283,700 Long Islanders who receive emergency food each year are children under 18 years of age.

So when school goes out for the summer — leaving many kids who receive free and reduced lunches at school without a source of nutrition — hunger assistance organizations such as L.I. Cares and Long Island Harvest find themselves trying to fill in the gaps for families.

With that in mind, L.I. Cares launched a new site for anyone under age 18 in need of a morning meal, opening an open site location in Stotzky Park from 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. every weekday.

“I chose it because I live in Riverhead, and to my knowledge it’s a popular park,” Child Nutrition Program Specialist Kerry Tooker explained.

An “open site” food location means that any child 18 and under can receive food there, no prior enrollment necessary.

The Summer Food Service Program is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and works with food banks to provide free and nutritious meals for children in low-income areas.

In Riverhead School District, 2,145 students out of the total student population of 5,100 qualify for free lunch and 300 qualify for reduced lunch, according to the District’s Chief Information Officer Chris Amato.

Though the meal changes daily, it always includes some type of fruit, a grain like a bagel, muffin or cereal bar, and a choice of milk or chocolate milk. The program started on July 7, and is offered through Aug. 29

Turnout was a little sporadic to start, Ms. Tooker said, varying anywhere from 19 kids to only one, one day.

Though the attendance numbers have picked up in the last week, staying well in the teens every day, Ms. Tooker said that public transportation to the park would be helpful. Currently, no buses run directly to Stotzky.

On Friday afternoons only, free lunch is given out from 12 to 1 p.m. at Ammann Riverfront Park in Riverhead. It is an open feeding site as well, coordinated by L.I. Cares in partnership with Lighthouse Mission of Patchogue.

For the last two years Riverhead Public Library was an open site for the Summer Food Service Program, working with hunger-relief organization Island Harvest, but this year they will not be. During the first year of the program they served 1,068 meals over 39 days.

“When I found out that Stotzky Park was going to be a location for L.I. Cares and that Island Harvest was going to have a site at Flanders Community Center, I thought it would just be duplicating services to have it at the library too,” said head of children’s services Laurie Harrison, who worked with Island Harvest the past two years.

“With resources so scarce, I thought, why drain each others’ resources? But we’ve offered to be a site again next year, so that’s in the works.”

07/24/14 6:00am
Northeast Stage rehearses William Shakespeare's 'A Midsummer Night's Dream.' (Credit: Katharine Schroeder)

Northeast Stage rehearses William Shakespeare’s ‘A Midsummer Night’s Dream.’ (Credit: Katharine Schroeder)

Northeast Stage will present William Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” in Greenport’s Mitchell Park Friday through Sunday, July 25-27, at 7 p.m. The rain location is Greenport High School.  (more…)

07/24/14 5:00am
Chicken will be grilled up Aug. 2 at (Credit: Katharine Schroeder, file)

Chicken will be grilled up Aug. 2 at Baiting Hollow Congregational Church. (Credit: Katharine Schroeder, file)

I hope all’s well with everyone as we enjoy this rather cool summer. I love it!

Baiting Hollow Congregational Church’s annual chicken barbecue will take place Saturday, Aug. 2. If you’ve never gone, you should. Chicken with all the trimmings will make you content. Takeout will be available. The rain date is Aug. 3 but hopefully that won’t be needed. Enjoy!  (more…)

07/23/14 6:00am
07/23/2014 6:00 AM
The North Fork Community Theatre in Mattituck rehearses this summer’s Youth on Stage musical, “The Wedding Singer.”

The North Fork Community Theatre in Mattituck rehearses this summer’s Youth on Stage musical, “The Wedding Singer.”

North Fork Community Theatre in Mattituck will present this summer’s Youth on Stage musical, “The Wedding Singer,” based on the 1998 film of the same name, beginning Thursday, July 24.

Set in 1985, the play is a romantic comedy about Robbie Hart, a wedding singer/wannabe rock star and Julia, the waitress who wins Robbie’s affection. The production is directed by Amanda Mouzakes, with musical direction by Jake Boergesson.

Performances will take place July 24-27, July 31-Aug. 3 and Aug. 7-10. Show times are 8 p.m. Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays and 2:30 p.m. Sundays. An opening reception will take place at 7 p.m. Thursday, July 24. Chances for two tickets to the Broadway show “Rock of Ages” will be sold at all performances.

Admission is $20. Student rush tickets ($15) may be available 10 minutes before curtain time. Visit nfct.com or call 298-NFCT (6328).

See more photos from Katharine Schroeder by clicking below: 

07/21/14 7:00am
07/21/2014 7:00 AM
Credit: Ashley Pinciaro

Credit: Ashley Pinciaro

I recently found two columns about books, the first amusing, the other a little troubling. The troubling one was about “trigger warnings,” notes of caution affixed to college reading lists or courses. The premise is that people who have been subjected to certain traumatic experiences should get a formal heads-up that a given book contains themes, chapters, paragraphs — perhaps only words — that revolve around one or more of life’s more unspeakable events. Such writing might cause upsetment, or worse, in someone who’s gone through such terrors.  (more…)

07/20/14 2:00pm
07/20/2014 2:00 PM
Mary Dowd of Greenport browses art nouveau titles Saturday at a temporary bookstore operating at Art Sites Gallery in Riverhead. Around 400 art books were donated by the family of Southold resident Bob Peters, who died in December. (Credit: Rachel Young)

Mary Dowd of Greenport browses art nouveau titles Saturday at a temporary bookstore operating at Art Sites Gallery in Riverhead. Around 400 art books were donated by the family of Southold resident Bob Peters, who died in December. (Credit: Rachel Young)

Bob Peters wasn’t an artist, but he deeply appreciated the work of those who were.

So when the avid collector, who lived in Manhattan and had a home in Southold, died unexpectedly in December at age 75, his family found themselves wondering what to do with his massive compendium — particularly his impressive library of thousands of art books.  (more…)