Southampton Town Supervisor Jay Schneiderman is seeking feedback from Flanders, Riverside and Northampton Community Association members regarding a proposal to decorate the Big Duck for various holidays. Currently, the Flanders structure is only adorned for Christmas during an annual lighting ceremony.
“Jay has this idea that the Big Duck is iconic to Flanders and he’d like to see it used in ways it hasn’t traditionally been used,” FRNCA president Ron Fisher said during the association’s Monday meeting. “He thinks it would be an interesting idea if it were decorated for different holidays — like St. Patrick’s Day, Independence Day or Memorial Day — the way it’s decorated for Christmas.”
The idea received mixed reviews from meeting participants. Mr. Fisher said he thought it would draw people to the duck throughout the year, but Flanders resident Janice Young — a member of the town’s Landmarks and Historic Districts board and a Big Duck employee — said the monument already has plenty of year-round visitors.
“I don’t like the idea,” she said of Mr. Schneiderman’s proposal. “It’s a National Historic site and an example of roadside architecture. I think it just cheeses it up a little too much.”
The Big Duck is owned by Suffolk County and sits on land owned by Southampton Town.
Chris Sheldon of Northampton, meanwhile, said the Friends of the Big Duck raised money to install lighting with colored filters around the structure several years ago, but the county wouldn’t allow it.
Photo caption: The Big Duck in Flanders during last Friday’s snowstorm. (Credit: Grant Parpan)