05/29/15 6:05am
05/29/2015 6:05 AM

The historic Jedediah Hawkins Inn got another temporary reprieve from the Riverhead Town Zoning Board Thursday night to allow it to hold outdoor catered events at the Jamesport restaurant, but it came with a number of conditions aimed at addressing the issue long term.

Because the town code only allows indoor catering – and not outdoor catering – as a permitted “accessory use” to restaurants, the Inn has had to seek a variance from the ZBA annually for the past eight years in order to hold outdoor events. Those variances have been granted, but with conditions.

Neighbors have complained about noise from those outdoor events at prior ZBA hearings.

At one point several years ago, the Town Board discussed changing the zoning to address these issues, but it never did.

On Thursday, the ZBA voted 4-1 in favor of the application, with board member Frank Seabrook casting the lone dissenting vote.

“It seemed to me that the negative impacts of noise from more outdoor events should not be a burden placed on this quiet residential community,” he said after the vote. “In spite of the beautiful restoration work done to that property, and the benefit of that restoration to the community, I could not find a reason to support this appeal. In this community, it is my opinion, that events should be held indoors.”

Pam Hunt, a representative for the Inn, told the ZBA at earlier hearings that the catering hall would have difficulty staying in business without the outdoor events.

Ms. Hunt also presented the ZBA with an online petition signed by more than 900 people in support of the Inn.

The approval granted Thursday allows the Inn to hold outdoor catered events until Nov. 30, 2016, but states: “The applicant is to retain counsel and make a formal written application to the Town of Riverhead Town Board on or before December 1, 2015 requesting a change of zone and or modification of the existing zone to permit catering outside of the principal structure.”

Among other conditions:

• Catering for outdoor events will only be permitted within a completely enclosed tent.

• The Inn will be limited to three outdoor events per month, and no more than one per day, and the events will not be permitted on weekday nights when school in session.

• Events cannot start earlier than noon or end later than 9:30 p.m., and there will be a limit of 125 guests per event.

•Sound levels at outdoor events must be in compliance with the town noise ordinance.

• The Inn will be required to keep a catering manager on site for the duration of outdoor events and that his or her name and cell phone number be conspicuously posted on the Inn’s website for the purpose of responding to noise complaints.

“All of us at Jedediah Hawkins Inn are grateful for the overwhelming show of support from our friends and neighbors, and to the ZBA members who voted to let us continue to serve them,” Ms. Hunt said after the vote. “We are hopeful that by continuing to do business in a responsible manner, we will reassure the few who opposed us.”

tgannon@timesreview.com 

02/25/15 10:00am
02/25/2015 10:00 AM
Rob Gabrielsen and his wife Amanda along with Ayden and Robert, far right, skating on the family rink in Jamesport. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)

Rob Gabrielsen and his wife Amanda along with Ayden and Robert, far right, skating on the family rink in Jamesport. (Credit: Barbaraellen Koch)

If you build it, they will skate.

The Gabrielsen family of Jamesport has a love of winter sports. Some Scandanavian blood runs in the family, so that may have something to do with it. But the Gabrielsens’ enthusiasm for skating goes beyond that of most people. After all, how many families can say they have an ice skating rink in their backyard? (more…)

02/20/15 12:00pm
02/20/2015 12:00 PM
The building at 1491 Main Road used to house a North Fork Bank branch.  (Credit: Michael White)

The building at 1491 Main Road used to house a North Fork Bank branch. (Credit: Michael White)

Citing ever-ongoing efforts to operate “as efficiently as possible while continuing to provide quality service and products,” a Capital One Bank spokeswoman confirmed this week the company will be closing down its Jamesport branch.

It’s one of five branches and one drive-up bank closing in Suffolk County, said the spokeswoman, Julie Rakes.

They will be closing April 24 and April 25, she said.
(more…)

01/31/15 3:00pm
01/31/2015 3:00 PM
Grand Marshal Allen Smith and EEES trustee John Cuddy at the Peconic Bay Diner in Riverhead Saturday. (Credit: Tim Gannon)

Grand Marshal Allen Smith and East End Emerald Society trustee John Cuddy at the Peconic Bay Diner in Riverhead Saturday. (Credit: Tim Gannon)

Things will be getting pretty Irish in the Town of Riverhead from late February into March, as the East End Emerald Society gears up for its second annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade in Jamesport on March 28, which is expected to be bigger than last year’s inaugural parade.

In addition to the parade, the East End Emerald Society also is planning a reception on Saturday, Feb. 21 to formally introduce its grand marshal for the parade, Riverhead Town Justice Allen Smith.  (more…)

01/14/15 4:35pm
01/14/2015 4:35 PM

Riverhead Cops police HeadquartersPolice said that on Tuesday night, shortly after an armed robbery was reported at an E. Main Street business, another was reported just a few miles to the east at a Jamesport business.

According to police, around 8:30 p.m. the manager of MCN Distributors reported that three males entered the business, pointed a handgun at him, and removed cash and heating/air conditioning equipment from the store.

Police said the men used a company box truck to take the proceeds, and the truck was later recovered on Reeves Avenue near Doctors Path.

The robbery was reported not long after a man entered the Damaris Multi Service, located at 725 East Main Street around 7:15 p.m. Tuesday wearing a ski mask and holding a handgun.

Police asked anyone with information about the incident to call 727-4500, ext. 302.

01/14/15 6:59am
George Kurovics enlisted with the U.S. Navy in 1944 at just 16 years old. (Credit: courtesy photo)

George Kurovics enlisted with the U.S. Navy in 1944 at just 16 years old. (Credit: courtesy photo)

George Kurovics was proud of his military work in World War II, during which he served as a tail gunner on reconnaissance planes in the South Pacific.

“He was proud of his country just as much,” said his son, also George, in an interview Wednesday morning, a day after the 90-year-old was struck and killed on Main Road in Jamesport by an alleged drunken driver.  (more…)