04/07/14 12:14pm
04/07/2014 12:14 PM

IMG_8585 Bjornholm1:2

Spring is upon us. And while it may bring beautiful flowers and warmer weather, it also brings those little pests that have been hiding all winter: ticks. There are many solutions to keeping ticks at bay, but most options are associated with harsh chemicals that can be dangerous. Peconic Landing has tips and advice for you to get rid of ticks using a healthier and more environmentally friendly approach.

Darryl Volinski, Director of Environmental Services for Peconic Landing, says Guinea hens are a big hit in residential areas for keeping ticks away. These hens simply wander your yard and eat all the ticks off the ground. It may sound too good to be true, but the Guinea hens are an easy and effective way of keeping your yard tick-free without spraying any dangerous chemicals.

Sponsored By Peconic Landing.

Peconic Landing strives to be one of the pre-eminent continuing care communities in the United States. We are achieving our goals by operating as a partnership with our residents, Board of Trustees, management and staff.

If you aren’t ready to share your yard with hens and would rather take a different approach, Peconic Landing suggests using an organic tick repellent around walkways and dwellings. Using chemical pesticides might not only dangerous to your pets’ health, but yours and your family’s as well.

“Organic repellent reduces the amount of chemicals going into your groundwater,” said Mr. Volinski. “It also reduces the amount of chemicals that are exposed to your family.” Not only that, but spraying harmful chemicals in the air also pollutes our planet. Organic repellent reduces pollution and is a more environmentally friendly option.

Other options for keeping ticks away this spring include simple tasks like removing tall grass from your yard, especially around walking paths. Ticks like to hide in this type of grass and keeping it short will help prevent that.

Another idea is to recruit the use of mice through cardboard cylinders. “Mice take cotton from these cylinders to their nest that is covered with [organic] tick repellent,” said Mr. Volinski. “This keeps ticks away and doesn’t hurt the rodents.”

Peconic Landing strongly suggests you attempt these steps for getting rid of ticks this season, rather than using chemicals and pesticides.

“We want to encourage each one of our neighbors to be proactive for their family’s safety,” said Laurelle Cassone, Director of Sales at Peconic Landing.“And also to be proactive in taking care of our planet.”

Shoreline facing south

03/11/14 1:42pm
03/11/2014 1:42 PM
Peconic Landing CEO Robert Syron (right) at a check presentation for the May Mile.

Peconic Landing CEO Robert Syron (right) at a check presentation to the Greenport Fire Department on behalf of the Community Connection program.

A lifecare retirement community established in 2002, Peconic Landing began its Community Connection program as an effort to give back to residents of the North Fork.  (more…)

03/07/14 5:00am
03/07/2014 5:00 AM
The entrance to Peconic Landing in Greenport. (Credit: Katharine Schroeder)

The entrance to Peconic Landing in Greenport. (Credit: Katharine Schroeder)

The Peconic Landing retirement community is hosting a holistic health fair on its Greenport campus Saturday.

“The four-hour fair offers a warm environment where visitors can explore everything from the world of organic foods and nutrition to many ways to reduce stress and promote relaxation for optimum health,” according a press release about the event.

People are invited to the fair learn about physical and massage therapy, and even pet therapy, as well as Eastern healing techniques such as acupuncture, Reiki and Qi Gong.

Representatives will also be on hand  to inform attendees on the potential benefits of yoga, reflexology and healing touch.

The “Whole Person Health and Wellness” fair is free and open to the public. It runs from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m.

The fair will be held in the community center at Peconic Landing, 1500 Brecknock Road, Greenport.

09/21/13 7:57am
09/21/2013 7:57 AM

SUFFOLK COUNTY HISTORICAL SOCIETY PHOTO | A houseboat sinks near S.T. Preston’s dock in Greenport during the ‘Long Island Express’ hurricane of 1938.

For as long as he can remember, John Holzapfel of Orient has been interested in the New England Hurricane of 1938 and its impact on the North Fork.

A retired Shoreham-Wading River High School science teacher with a master’s in marine studies, the self-proclaimed history buff has done his fair share of research on the “Long Island Express.”

His fascination with the storm heightened in the wake of Hurricane Sandy, which devastated the region last year.

Special Report: Remembering the ‘L.I. Express hurricane of 1938′

Now, 75 years after that early storm struck, Mr. Holzapfel is preparing to present “The Hurricane of ’38,” a talk co-sponsored by the Oysterponds Historical Society and Peconic Landing, on Saturday, Sept. 21. The presentation will start at 4 p.m. at Peconic Landing’s community center in Greenport.

The program will begin with a brief description of how hurricanes form, followed by a discussion of the special conditions that made the 1938 storm so disastrous for the East End.

The highlight, Mr. Holzapfel said, will be firsthand recollections of the storm. He’ll also show photos of damage sustained from Orient to Greenport.

To Mr. Holzapfel, one of the most noteworthy facts about the hurricane was that locals didn’t see it coming.

“They didn’t expect it,” he said. “It should have gone out to sea.”

The talk is free of charge and no registration is necessary. For more information, visit oysterpondshistoricalsociety.org or call 323-2480.


08/28/12 3:09pm
08/28/2012 3:09 PM

Justin Abbey and Susana Andrade, who have won a free wedding at Brecknock Hall in Greenport on Veterans Day.

Active U.S. Army couple Susana Andrade and Justin Abbey are the winners of Peconic Landing’s second free Brecknock Hall wedding and will tie the knot at the historic Brecknock Hall building in Greenport on Veterans Day, Sunday, Nov. 11.

Mr. Abbey is a Southold native and E4 specialist working to become a Black Hawk pilot. His bride-to-be is a California native and E5 Sergeant with an FAA certificate for air traffic control.

The two enlisted in the army in 2009 and met during specialty training in Alabama, but did not start dating until they were later stationed together in South Korea.

Engaged on July 20, the two will begin their tours of duty in Afghanistan early next summer.

Peconic Landing, which owns Brecknock Hall, a restored 19th century manor house, started its free wedding giveaway for military couples last year.

“We’re committed to being good neighbors,” said Robert Syron, Peconic Landing’s president and CEO. “This initiative was inspired by the fact that many of our residents are veterans.”

08/19/12 8:00am
08/19/2012 8:00 AM

KATHARINE SCHROEDER FILE PHOTO | Peconic Landing in Greenport is celebrating its 10th anniversary.

Peconic Landing, Greenport’s lifecare community, is celebrating its tenth anniversary this Sunday with music and fireworks.

Pat Lutzky, Peconic Landing’s vice president for resident services, said the Atlantic Wind Symphony, a 30-piece orchestra, will perform at 7 p.m. outside Brecknock Hall followed by a fireworks show at 9 p.m. Visitors should bring blankets or chairs, she said.

“We wanted to say thank you to the local communities on the North Fork for allowing us to be an integral part of the community,” Ms. Lutzky said.

Connie Ellis, the facility’s community enrichment manager, said Peconic Landing has strengthened its connection to local residents and businesses over the past several years.

Peconic Landing has created community enrichment programs at its historic Brecknock Hall mansion that are open to the public, as well as organizing concerts and art shows. After the outpouring of local support for the free wedding given to two local soldiers last year, Peconic Landing has decided to do it again this year. In addition, the facility holds an annual May Mile and 5K to raise money for the Greenport Fire Department.

“All of this that we do is to benefit the North Fork community,” Ms. Ellis said.

Ms. Ellis said Peconic Landing plans to allow more high school students to participate in its mentoring program, which matches seniors from Greenport, Southold and Mattituck high schools with Peconic Landing residents who have worked in careers they’re interested in pursuing. Next year, Peconic Landing also plans to pair students with local business owners so they can learn more about a profession they may want to enter.

Robert Syron, president of Peconic Landing, said he’s proud of what his company has accomplished over the past decade.

Mr. Syron said Peconic Landing has received accreditation from the Continuing Care Accreditation Commission, is listed on the U.S. News & World Report’s “Honor Roll for Best Nursing Homes in America” and won the “Best Companies to Work for in NY State” award from the state’s Society for Human Resource Management.

“We have incredible people that live here and work here,” Mr. Syron said. “We’ve worked very hard to integrate ourselves into the community because we love the community. I’m extremely proud.”

Peconic Landing is also in the middle of a $36 million expansion project that’s currently moving through the town approval process.

The project would create 16 suites for residents with memory problems, 26 additional spaces at The Shores skilled nursing facility, 40 additional apartments with underground parking, an expanded fitness center and a lifelong learning center.

Ms. Lutzky said Peconic Landing is also organizing international cinema and independent film events, as well as ballet performances.

“Peconic Landing wants to open its door and share what it can with the greater community,” she said.


07/25/12 12:06pm
07/25/2012 12:06 PM

KATHARINE SCHROEDER PHOTO | Johnathan and Cathrine Schmanski enter Brecknock Hall in Greenport moments after their wedding ceremony last Veteran’s Day.

After the outpouring of local support for Brecknock Hall’s wedding giveaway to two local soldiers last year, Peconic Landing, the event’s organizer, has decided to do it again.

Active duty Army soldiers Cathrine and John Schmanski of Riverhead, who had been stationed in Afghanistan, were married last Veterans Day at Brecknock Hall, a restored 19th-century manor house in Greenport, in a ceremony donated by the Peconic Landing lifecare community, which owns the building, with support from two dozen local merchants.

Now stationed at Fort Stewart in Georgia, the couple are expecting their first child. They fell in love while stationed at a military base in Germany in 2009 and were officially married by a justice of the peace in Arizona in 2010. But they didn’t have a wedding ceremony until the Brecknock Hall event.

This week, the search began for the 2012 Brecknock Veterans Day wedding couple.

“It’s powerful to see individuals and businesses join together to honor those who serve our country in such a meaningful way,” said Peconic Landing president and CEO Robert Syron. He added that last year’s wedding was a testament to a community that unites for a good cause.

“We’re embarking on this year’s journey to Nov. 11 with an incredible sense of gratitude,” he said. “Giving back is a priority at Peconic Landing and this effort is particularly meaningful since many of our residents are veterans.”

This year’s winners will receive catering, entertainment, flowers, photography and numerous other wedding day donations from 20 local sponsors.

Couples must submit their stories to info@brecknockhall.com by Monday, Aug. 5. They’re asked to include details about their ties to the East End, Suffolk County, Long Island or New York State and whether one or both serves or served in the military.

Peconic Landing would also like to know whether they’re on active duty or have recently returned from a combat zone, the number of tours of duty they’ve completed and any special circumstances or honors they’ve received.


07/04/11 9:20am
07/04/2011 9:20 AM

BARBARAELLEN KOCH FILE PHOTO | Cathrine and Jonathan Schmanski during their brief time home in the spring.

Johnathan and Cathrine Schmanski of Riverhead are soldiers, and although they both serve in Afghanistan the hours they spend together are fleeting and few.

“We’ve seen each other three or four times in  two years,  just through taking leave and stuff like that,” Jonathan said in a March interview.

They married just over a year ago, but with the ceremony taking place in Arizona  many relatives couldn’t attend. They always planned for a traditional wedding with family and friends when time allowed.

Thanks to the Peconic Landing community life center in Greenport, they’ll have a complete traditional wedding in the fall at the historic Brecknock Hall mansion on the center’s grounds, with food, flowers, a wedding cake, a photographer — the whole deal — all for free.

On Friday the Schmanskis were selected as the winners of Peconic Landing’s first-ever free wedding for military personnel or veterans. The couple’s second wedding will take place on Veteran’s Day, 11/11/11.

“Peconic Landing is dedicated to being a good neighbor, and we make giving back to the East End community a priority,” said Bob Syron, the center’s CEO amd executive director. “This commitment inspired the evolution of Brecknock Hall into a vibrant cultural arts center, and Brecknock is now providing us with a very special way to say thank you to Veterans who have selflessly served our country.”

The idea for a Brecknock Hall wedding for a service veteran came out of a brainstorming session last year about possible uses for the restored mansion, according to spokeswoman Diane Radigan. A committee of Peconic Landing residents, all veterans, plus a staff member who retired after a long career with the Marines and Suffolk Times editor Tim Kelly unanimously selected the Schmanskis on Friday.

Although both were assigned to bases in Afghanistan in the past year, they’re three-and-a half hours apart by plane — he at Bagram Airfield in the northern part of the country and she at Kandahar in the mountainous southern part of the country. He’s a staff sergeant working as an unmanned aerial vehicle operator and she’s a system support specialist. They’ve had little time together since their May 2010 marriage.

They came home for 15 days during spring and were the guests of honor at a homecoming celebration at Diggers Restaurant in Riverhead. Jonathan surprised Cathrine by taking her to a Lady Gaga show in New York.

The couple met while both were stationed in Germany. Jonathan recalled they didn’t hit it off at first. His wife agrees.

“Yeah, we hated each other,” she said in a Riverhead News-Review story.

Obviously, that changed.

“But then one night we spent some time together and we realize we had a lot of things in common,” Jonathan said. “Once we started to get along, we’ve been pretty much attached at the hip ever since.”

Their reception will be catered by Matt Kar from the Jamesport Manor Inn. The flowers will be courtesy of Ivy League Florists in Southold, and Miche Bacher of Sacred Sweets in Greenport will provide the wedding cake. Greenport photographer Caroline Rochetta has volunteered to take wedding pictures.