A Different View on Long Beach

Photo courtesy Jonathan Spector Photography. An Aerial of Long Beach, Atlantic Beach and the Rockaways. Taken flying in from Puerto Rico on JetBlue in February, 2008.

Photo courtesy Jonathan Spector Photography. Aerial of Long Beach, Atlantic Beach and the Rockaways. Taken while flying in from Puerto Rico on JetBlue in February, 2008.

Has anyone else been at the Coffee Nut Café by Pier 1 in Long Beach lately? I was there about a week ago for my usual fill ‘er up (I live and breathe by the Peruvian organic!) and was astounded with the new artwork on the walls.

There is an incredible showing of photos from Jonathan Spector, mostly taken around, above and off of Long Beach, as well as from around the world.

I had seen this aerial shot of Long Beach as a mind blowing raffle prize at the recent Project Pay It Forward event to help Swingbellys.

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Then, as if on cue, at the Coffee Nut, here were more astounding shots that blur the line between photography and surreal paintings.

When asked what he’s been doing he says “Overall, I’ve been displaying my work at fine art shows from Lincoln Center in NYC to out east in Montauk. ”

I have to say, I’m enamored of the ones showing that were taken from inside and under waves off Long Beach. Probably “The Curl” is my favorite.
A visual reminder of the feel of being inside the tube of a wave- one of my favorite mental images. It puts me right there in fond memories of some of the best days I have spent in the water.

Photo courtesy Jonathan Spector Photography

Photo courtesy Jonathan Spector Photography. Valentines Day, 2008 during an ice storm in Long Beach.

The other ones are really cool, in fact they are all extraordinary.  Jonathan says “Most of them are of Long Beach which shows just how amazing Long Beach is year round!”

You need to see his work. In person is definitely worth the stop.

The showing will be ongoing at the Coffee Nut Cafe. See if you can’t get a cup of Jamaican Blue Mountain while you’re there. It’s worth the extra few cents, a treat that you can’t usually get elsewhere!

You can check out more of Jonathan’s photography at his website:
http://www.myvisionphotography.biz/

And you can follow him on facebook at http://www.facebook.com/jonathanspectorphotography

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Beach Grass Planting at Civic Beach

the sign was suspended for about 30 minutes for rebuilding the beach side of the dunes...

the “keep off” sign was suspended for about 30 minutes for rebuilding the beach side of the dunes…

A few dozen volunteers
+ a few thousand Beach grass plants
= Another successful group effort to restore our shore!

coming together to protect our dunes. From right to left: Frankie, Flynn, Danna, Betty, Emma and Megan

Point Lookout residents, friends, and family worked together to protect our dunes. From right to left: Frankie, Flynn, Danna, Betty, Emma and Megan

me holding a bunch of beach grass about to be planted at civic beach point lookout NY

my first bunch of beach grass to be planted.. 3 at a time, 6-12 inches deep, 12-18 inches apart…repeat.

I showed up with my gloves and my hand shovel and was greeted by Kate Murray and other local leaders who were impressed that most people came prepared, showing up with their own tools.

some of the dozens of volunteers. some of the thousands of plants planted...

some of the dozens of volunteers. some of the thousands of plants planted…

“As always when we make the call to Point Lookout, the town turns out.” – Kate Murray

Flynn photobombed me!

Flynn photobombed me!

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havin a good time? we sure made it look like fun for the camera!

havin a good time? we sure made it look like fun for the camera!

An interesting conversation broke out about the fact that there was a box full of hand shovels marked “valentines day” and the musings of other great gifts went from there!

about 60 volunteers planted new beach grass with the Town of Hempstead at civic beach

about 60 volunteers planted new beach grass with the Town of Hempstead at civic beach

east side crew planting at civic beach

east side crew planting at civic beach

Someone promised to come back monthly and take pictures to show how the plants are growing, that’s a great idea!

the last stem finds its way to a new home, with many new neighbors.

the last stem finds its way to a new home, with many new neighbors.

With towns devastated up and down the East Coast, everybody is looking for beach grass. These were the last ones that were to be had and we got them!

thousands of baby beach grass plants were planted

thousands of baby beach grass plants were planted

So please everyone, more than ever, stay off the dunes. This was a big first step to restoring them so that they’re able to protect us once again.

newly planted grass, Dune Protection Zone back in effect!

newly planted grass, Dune Protection Zone back in effect!

Scenes from Habitat Work Day 2013

most of the group from Point Lookout on the hillside steps at High Street, Yonkers, NY

most of the volunteer group from Point Lookout on the hillside steps at High Street, Yonkers, NY

The Point Lookout Community Church went on their annual Habitat For Humanity work day on Saturday April 20, 2013.

Volunteers unload lumber that became new floors and temporary wall supports by the end of the day

Volunteers unload lumber that became new floors and temporary wall supports by the end of the day

We had a great turnout somewhere upwards of 35 to 40 people helped out from the Point Lookout community and surrounding areas.

after the garbage was cleaned up, actual gardening and clearing could begin.

after the garbage was cleaned up, actual gardening and clearing could begin.

The group split up into three different areas :
cleaning up the hillside
building temporary supports to allow for the removal and replacing of a two-story back wall of a building and
setting gravel and floor joists for new flooring in another building.
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Some of the volunteers moved insane amounts of gravel for the floor substrate in one of the buildings- I wish I had better pictures, but I was too busy, trying to do my part,  to take pictures!

Looking at the hopuses that are on the town stairs, kind of like the walks in Long Beach.

Looking at the hopuses that are on the town stairs, kind of like the walks in Long Beach.

The three adjacent homes are on a Hillside, set on the historic Yonkers steps, each with views down the Hudson to New York City. All three are in need of serious rehabilitation.  It is probably going to take some time before they’re close to being livable.

Jim (a real inspiring guy!!) from Habitat for Humanity told us that these houses are going to be for US veterans of the War in Afghanistan.

check out the Habitat For Humanity of Westchester website here

One of them was on hand and was actually doing the work which is part of habitat’s policy for people to have their own sweat equity in the house they receive.

Point Lookout Volunteers give a much needed clean up to the hillside adjacent to the houses.

Point Lookout Volunteers give a much needed clean up to the hillside adjacent to the houses.

Good work volunteers! and what a great day.

Beach Grass Planting Volunteers Needed!

Point Lookout Civic Beach... Ready for Beach Grass.  come plant some!

Point Lookout Civic Beach… Ready for Beach Grass. come plant some!

You can help re-establish and restore our Dunes!

Date: Sunday, April 28, 2013
10 AM at Point Lookout Civic Beach

or
11AM at Troy Avenue Beach in East Atlantic Beach

The Town of Hempstead is inviting residents to get involved and will be supplying the American Beach Grass (ammophila breviligulata). By the end of the weekend they hope to have 21,000 of them planted here in Point Lookout, Lido Beach and Atlantic Beach.

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From the Town:

The Supervisor directed the township’s Conservation and Waterways’ staff to acquire 21,000 American beach grass plants, also known as ammophila breviligulata, to plant along rebuilt sand dunes in Lido Beach and other shorefront communities. The plants stabilize the dunes through a root structure that knits together beneath the sand. Beach grass roots can reach depths of 20 feet. Beyond combating erosion, the shoreline vegetation can actually help dunes grow in size by trapping sand in its elongated flowering spikes. As sand builds up around the new grass, stems grow higher, and newly sand-covered stems become part of the root structure.

Hempstead Town has built up dunes in Lido Beach, Point Lookout and East Atlantic Beach over several decades. The efficacy of the dunes in protecting local homes from tidal flooding was recognized in a December 3, 2012 New York Times article. Indeed, the article observed that the extent of Sandy-related damage was less severe in Point Lookout, Lido Beach and East Atlantic Beach, contrasted with the devastation in neighboring Long Beach, because of the dunes that were constructed by Hempstead Town over the years.

Finally, the grassy dunes of the south shore serve as a refuge for the endangered Piping Plover. By rebuilding dunes, Hempstead Town is protecting an important shorebird habitat.

Work was already done in Lido, kids from Camp Anchor got out and planted grass for Earth Day!

see you there!

Point Lookout Clam Bar and Fisherman’s Catch Restaurant Return

The Point Lookout Clambar Reopens Today April 18, 2013

The Point Lookout Clam Bar Reopens Today April 18, 2013

Today, Thursday April 18, 2013 marks the long awaited reopening of the Point Lookout Clam Bar. Their Sister waterfront dining destination, Fisherman’s Catch Restaurant, reopened this past weekend (Saturday 4/13/13) for the annual Fisherman’s Ball and has been going since.

Both waterfront businesses were battered by Superstorm Sandy.
Now they’re both gearing up to get business back up and better than ever.

I spoke to Ali at the Point Lookout Clam Bar who was proud to show off the newly refurbished digs.

the newly refurbished interior at the Point Loookout Clam Bar

the newly refurbished interior at the Point Loookout Clam Bar

During Sandy, the clam bar had water up over their raised decks, into the building. so everything was hit. Ali pointed out that the water surrounded the area, and had been above the neighbors’ fence across the street. When you look out from inside and imagine that, it gives a vivid and grim picture of what Superstorm Sandy did.

nautical decorations outside the Point Lookout Clam Bar

Point Lookout Clam Bar, Reopens today

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Owner, Bruce Larson tells me though the height of their main floor at Fisherman’s Catch helped avoid direct damage in the dining area and bar(there was indirect damage), damage to all utilities below-heat, a/c, and kitchen equipment was extensive.

The bay crashed its way into the lower part of the restaurant. The myriad decks and docks on both properties were mostly destroyed.

love the woodwork in the Fisherman's Catch Restaurant, Point Lookout, NY

love the woodwork in the Fisherman’s Catch Restaurant, Point Lookout, NY

“Irene was just a flirt..” He said in regards to the damage inflicted by Sandy. “Point Lookout never saw water like this.” He said the highest anyone had seen previously only covered their lower dock.

I look around and pretty much everything inside the restaurant is new -carpet, chairs and lighting.

Fisherman's Catch Restaurant, and the remnants of their bayfront dock and deck. Point Lookout NY

Fisherman’s Catch Restaurant, and the remnants of their bayfront dock and deck. Point Lookout NY

It looks like the same Fisherman’s Catch that we’ve all known and loved, just brand-new again. To help avoid future flood damage, they’ve moved all the new utilities they had to replace to the upstairs.

The newly refurbished areas arent the only thing that’s new:
Bruce explains that he’s also excited about the new menu which is four months in the making.

the newly redone Dining Room at the Fisherman's Catch Restaurant, Point Lookout, NY

the newly redone Dining Room at the Fisherman’s Catch Restaurant, Point Lookout, NY

Talk goes back to the Point Lookout Clam Bar and Bruce Larson speaks of their new feature- a sushi bar. “The little bit of sushi we’ve been doing is something we’re proud of”.

the new sushi bar at the Point Lookout Fish Market.

the new sushi bar at the Point Lookout Fish Market.

While rebuilding he says they decided to add the Sushi bar and “Make it a little bit more official … and I think it’s going to catch on.”

Fishermans Catch Restaurant-open now
Point Lookout Clam Bar-opening today
The fish/Fresh market will be open by the weekend.
are you ready to “catch” on?

LI Toy Lending Center Fundraiser

Colleen with support from good friends Anthony and Claire

Colleen with support from good friends Anthony and Claire

It was fun to see some of you last Saturday afternoon, April 6, 2013 at the fundraiser for the Long Island Toy Lending Center, organized by Project Pay It Forward of Long Beach. There was a good crowd at The Point Ale House to pitch in to help get the funds to rebuild the not-for-profit’s flooded premises.

Quite a spread of Raffle prizes were available

Quite a spread of Raffle prizes were available

I didn’t win, but that GG (Gigi?)? either bought a bazillion tickets, or is really lucky or something!

Mr Kevin Halpin shows his winnings

Kevin Halpin shows his winnings

A stripped down but nevertheless cranking St Elvis provided the soundtrack for the day.

Mckenzie Bender shows her best moves

Mckenzie Bender shows her best moves

Everyone was struck by this cutie, Mckenzie Bender, who was showing her best dance moves. There was even some funny chatter revolving around Mckenzie’s shoes, (sandals) which it turns out several ladies were highly envious of. Someone promised me a better picture of her…obviously I”m still waiting!!!

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Kelly Sullivan of Project Pay It Forward

Kelly Sullivan of Project Pay It Forward

Colleen Moseman of Long Island Toy Lending Center takes it all in stride. It’s been a long road here and 5 months later they’re finally a big step closer to rebuilding. Colleen says the event “went really well” meaning a great amount was raised and the funds are mostly in place for the rebuild. There will be meetings and discussions soon and then rebuilding and literally raising the roof will begin.

The Long Island Toy Lending Center, in need of repairs from Superstorm Sandy

The Long Island Toy Lending Center, in need of repairs from Superstorm Sandy

Donations can still go a long way to help cover expenses.
For direct donations make checks payable to
Long Island Toy Lending Center
PO Box 380
Point Lookout. NY 11569

Helping hands are going to be needed for the rebuilding in the next few weeks.
To Volunteer, please call Colleen at (516) 241-7203

You can also contact them at LITOYCENTER at GMAIL.com
Copy n paste that and replace the “at” with “@”.