Friday, December 4, 2015

Townsend Park Renovation is Underway in Oyster Bay!

Current state of Townsend Park
Oyster Bay, NY – In cooperation with the Town of Oyster Bay and local merchant Main Street Nursery, the Oyster Bay Main Street Association is pleased to announce the renovation of the public park in between the historic Oyster Bay Post Office and the historic Oyster Bay Town Hall known as Townsend Park.

Originally designated a public park in 1906, when the Townsend Family subdivided their lot and created Audrey Avenue, the area was largely used as a public gathering space and in 1909 a bandstand was erected on the site to suit this purpose.  After the original bandstand was torn down in the 1930s, the park was given fresh life when a replica bandstand was created and dedicated in 1981.

Original Bandstand and Layout of Townsend Park circa 1910
Postcard courtesy of the Oyster Bay Historical Society

In the ensuing 35 years, several piece-meal renovations have been completed in the area.  While originally no trees adorned the public park, over time three Honey Locust trees were added to the west side; approximately 20 years ago, a Christmas tree, originally intended to be temporary, was added to the east side; and most recently, within the last five years, two Purple Leaf Plums were also added to the east side in an attempt to even out the lot.  These mismatched and overgrown trees have severely limited the visibility of the bandstand and the usable space within the public green.

The plans, provided by Main Street Nursery and sponsored by the Oyster Bay Main Street Association, seek to create a uniform and attractive design for an area that has great potential to be the focal point of the downtown once again!  Based off of the assessment of certified arborist, Jason LaMay, the existing trees were recommended for removal to be replaced with six Zelkova Green Vase trees more suited for the area and properly spaced on the property to improve sight lines.  Plans also include improved lighting, the placement of benches, improved landscaping and repair of the brick walkway in the area.  In total, a substantial improvement to a small but important area, resulting in another great asset to the Oyster Bay-East Norwich Community!

With support from the Town of Oyster Bay and other local organizations – including Friends of the Bay, the OB-EN Chamber of Commerce, Oyster Bay Civic Association, Oyster Bay Historical Society, Oyster Bay Railroad Museum, Oyster Bay Rotary Club, OB-EN Youth Athletic Association, Raynham Hall Museum, Sagamore Hill NHS and the East Norwich Civic Association - we are excited to move forward with this renovation and have it complete for the whole community to enjoy during the Old Fashioned Holiday Market and Christmas Tree lighting on Saturday, December 12, 2015!

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

An Economic Vision for Nassau County

There has been plenty of talk surrounding the economic state of Nassau County - from concerns over corporations leaving and taking job opportunities with them to the so-called "Brain Drain" with the youngest generation leaving the county to find job opportunities elsewhere - but by and large, there has been no action.

Projections indicate that over the next 10 years, by 2024:

  • Nassau County's population will decline by approximately 3.0% from 2012 to 2024
  • The senior (60+) segment will increase to 27.4% of the County population, up from 22.2% in 2012
  • The County will continue to experience a decrease of 11.1% of those aged 10-19, who will go on to college or move elsewhere and not return to Nassau County.
  • The 0-9 year old segment will have approximately 60,000 fewer children or about 30% less than in 2000.
These trends are a cause for serious concern - If something is not done there will be serious economic ramifications for our schools, taxes and real estate prices.  

If you are interested in learning more about potential solutions to: Restore economic vitality,
Combat population decline, and 
Create good paying jobs...

...Then Join Us!

Friday, October 16, 2015

A Time for Specters & Spooks in a Historic Haunted Home known for Soldiers & Spies

In the heart of downtown Oyster Bay...
stands the ancestral home of one of the most influential families in the Hamlet's history
- the Townsend Family -
(Credit: Newsday / Thomas A. Ferrara)
The home has stood through the centuries, bearing witness to the passing of generations and the build up of the downtown that now surrounds it.  Known as Raynham Hall, the home has received some notoriety beyond its historic ties to the Revolutionary War and George Washington's Culper Spy Ring by being named one of the most haunted places on Long Island by Newsday.

Fittingly, for this season, the home has been chosen as the venue for a killer Halloween Party hosted by Raynham Hall and the Oyster Bay Main Street Association! 

Enjoy a rare opportunity to explore the homestead outside of normal museum hours, while delighting in live music provided by the band Mad Pursuit and partaking in our open bar and hors d' oeuvres!

Further details below:

Before the trick-or-treating commences on the 31st,

 Raynham Hall Museum 
& The Oyster Bay Main Street Association 

cordially invite you to join them 
for a Halloween Party that is sure to be a treat! 


$125 per person including a seated buffet banquet at 7 pm
$75 per person for the after-party only, from 9 pm to 12 am

Music by Mad Pursuit
Beer by Oyster Bay Brewing
Cocktails, hors d' oeuvres

Dress Code: Spook-tacular (prizes for best costume)
Please Call 516.922.6982 for more information

Order Tickets Online Below:

Order Online

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Could the Best of Long Island Be Right Here in Oyster Bay?

It's that time of year again! Bethpage Federal Credit Union's 11th year of the "Best of Long Island" competition is underway! Voting is open from October 1st until December 18th, vote early and vote often for your favorite businesses, organizations, and events!

Oyster Bay has quite a few nominees in the running this year and it would be great if we could all take a moment to support our small businesses and organizations, who do so much for our downtown! Each title (i.e. Entertainment, Automotive, etc.) is a link to the voting page for that section, just click it to be directed to the Best of Long Island page!

Here are the Oyster Bay Nominees:

  • Annual Event or Festival
    • Oyster Bay Cruise Nights
    • Oyster Bay Oyster Festival
  • Celebrity Impersonator
    • James Foote as Theodore Roosevelt
  • Museum
    • Raynham Hall Museum
    • Sagamore Hill National Historic Site
  • Public Garden
    • Planting Fields Arboretum
  • Foreign Auto Dealership
    • BMW of Oyster Bay
  • Long Island Collectible Car Club
    • New York Auto Fest
  • Motorcycle Shop
    • 20th Century Cycles
  • Vintage Clothing
    • Next to New Boutique
  • Art School
    • The Teaching Studios of Art
  • Catholic School
    • St. Dominic's High School
  • School Principal
    • Cecilia St. John of St. Dominic's
  • Best Gyro
    • Greek Cove
  • Best Hot Dogs
    • Bonanza's 
  • Sausage & Peppers Sandwich
    • Bonanza's
  • Assisted Living
    • Harbor House
    • Oyster Bay Manor
  • Day Spa
    • Blue Water Spa
  • Personal Trainer
    • Meta Burn Fitness
  • Skin Care
    • Blue Water Spa
  • Appliance Store
    • Appliance World
  • Architect
    • Oyster Bay Drafting
  • Barbecue Store
    • Appliance World
  • Nursery Garden Store
    • Main Street Nursery
    • Martin Viette
  • Patio Furniture Store
    • Dodds & Eder Home
  • Roofing Company
    • Oyster Bay Roofing
  • Craft Beer Brewery
    • Oyster Bay Brewing Company
  • Dry Cleaning
    • Greensleeves Cleaners
  • Environmental Organization
    • Friends of the Bay
  • Gold Buyer
    • Coin Galleries of Oyster Bay
  • Antique Store
    • The Attic Door
  • Jewelry Store
    • Coin Galleries of Oyster Bay
  • Recreational Center
    • Oyster Bay Community Center
  • Skate Shop
    • L-Industrie Long Boards
  • Water Sport Rental
    • WaterFront Center
  • Honeymoon Travel Planners
    • Cruise Planners
    • Oyster Bay Travel
  • Wedding Jeweler
    • Coin Galleries of Oyster Bay

Monday, August 24, 2015

Save the Date: Third Annual End of the Season Benefit

The Oyster Bay Main Street Association
requests the pleasure of your company at our
Annual End of the Season Benefit

Wednesday, September 30, 2015
6 o’clock in the evening until 9 o’clock

The Creek Beach Club
1 Horse Hollow Road Locust Valley, New York
Prior to the Event...

Beginning at 5 in the evening, a small cocktail party will be hosted by the Main Street Association at the Main Club House for an additional contribution of $75 per person. 

Funds raised will support the commencement of our newest endeavor focused on incentivizing new business in the Hamlet through a revolving loan fund. The Board of Directors and staff welcome the community’s insight and invite all to learn more about MSA and the positive 

changes happening in Oyster Bay.
Tickets and sponsorship opportunities are available for purchase below:
Order Online

Thursday, August 20, 2015

OBMSA Receives Preservation Grant

National Trust for Historic Preservation Awards the 
Oyster Bay Main Street Association a Preservation Grant 
To Procure Historic Architectural Services for 49 Audrey Avenue

Media Contacts: 
NTHP Public Affairs, 202.588.6141,
OBMSA, Meredith Maus, 516.922.6982,

Oyster Bay, New York (August 20, 2015) - The Oyster Bay Main Street Association was awarded a $4,718.75 grant by the National Trust for Historic Preservation from the Johanna Favrot Fund for Historic Preservation. These grant funds will be used to secure the services of Historic Architect John Collins during the initial planning phases of an intended larger renovation of 49 Audrey Avenue by the owner.

49 Audrey Avenue, April 2015
Photos by Meredith Maus

Project Description

Mr. Collins will produce detailed drawings and plans on 49 Audrey Avenue, which will provide a complete overview of the project and will be vital during every phase of the intended renovation.  Record drawings will be completed to the standards of the Historic American Building Survey and will serve to provide a deeper understanding of existing conditions within the building, highlighting important historic features and fabrics.  Should later investigations reveal greater historical importance related to the building, these drawings will serve as a record of the original building prior to renovation.  Preliminary and final design drawings; construction drawings; and code compliance oversight will also be provided and supported through this grant.

49 Audrey Avenue is a large, high-visibility building on the main thoroughfare of Oyster Bay.  The five apartments on the second and third floors have been vacant and out of compliance for over ten years and the commercial spaces have been vacant since the former tenant, The Chocolate Lady, relocated in 2012.  The renovation of this high profile building will help two-fold by combating blight in the downtown, as well as, increasing the number of residential units available in the downtown - giving a boost to the base available to better support local commerce.  "Beyond that," said Meredith Maus, Executive Director of the Main Street Association, "we hope this renovation will also serve as an example of how the proper renovation of an historic building will help attract and sustain appropriate businesses in our downtown."

Grant Information

"Organizations like the Oyster Bay Main Street Association, help to ensure that communities and towns all across America retain their unique sense of place," said Stephanie Meeks, president of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. "We are honored to provide a grant to the Oyster Bay Main Street Association, which will use the funds to help preserve an important piece of our shared national heritage."

Grants from the National Trust Preservation Funds range from $2,500 to $5,000 and have provided over $15 million since 2003. These matching grants are awarded to nonprofit organizations and public agencies across the country to support wide-ranging activities including consultant services for rehabilitating buildings, technical assistance for tourism that promotes historic resources, and the development of materials for education and outreach campaigns.

For more information on National Trust for Historic Preservation’s Preservation Fund grants, visit:

About the National Trust for Historic Preservation

The National Trust for Historic Preservation is a privately-funded nonprofit organization that works to save America’s historic places to enrich our future. The National Trust for Historic Preservation is committed to protecting America’s rich cultural legacy and helping build vibrant, sustainable communities that reflect our nation’s diversity. Follow us on Twitter @presnation.

About the Oyster Bay Main Street Association

Oyster Bay Main Street Association (OBMSA) is dedicated to enhancing and promoting an attractive and thriving downtown, while maintaining its historic integrity. We are a 501 (c) 3 Non-Profit using the National Main Street Approach® to downtown revitalization.  To learn more or to become a member, please visit:

Monday, August 10, 2015

Dancing in the Street Concludes Most Successful Season!

DJ Mark James teaching the crowd some Swing!
Photo by Meredith Maus
Oyster Bay Main Street Association's
Event Bigger and Better than Ever

By Diane J. Meltzer

Starting with the holiday weekend full moon on July 3rd, and ending with the full “blue” moon on July 31st, DANCING IN THE STREET lit up downtown Oyster Bay for five Friday evenings. Perfect weather on all five dates enticed almost 800 people to “come on down,” with over 200 on the final night.
Photo by Meredith Maus
BMW of Oyster Bay was once again the sponsor for this fifth season, and brought a shiny new car every week to display. Two local boy scouts, hired with money generously donated by the Oyster Bay Chamber of Commerce Cruise Night, set up and took down the temporary barriers each Friday to close off the street near the bandstand. And everyone’s favorite DJs—Louis del Prete and Mark James—took turns returning to play a variety of music and give free dance instructions to the crowds.
Selection of BMW cars on display throughout the event
Photos by Meredith Maus
The difference this year was the greater diversity participating: young and old, singles and couples, from near and far, taking to the dance floor/street; families enjoying a night out together and not once checking their phones; senior citizens sitting in chairs and happily watching the action that brought back wonderful memories. With many walking through town and eating in the restaurants before and after, it was a win-win situation for all!
Dancing into the night!
Photo by Meredith Maus

Tuesday, July 28, 2015

7 Things To Do in Oyster Bay

Postcard Courtesy of the Oyster Bay Historical Society
C&T's Empire Insider will give you the ins and outs of what to do, what to see, and where to see it in all corners of New York state.
Originally posted in AAA's Car & Travel, July/August 2015
By: Andrew G. Rosen

Oyster Bay is often revered as the crown jewel of the opulent North Shore. With deep historical ties, including President Theodore Roosevelt taking up residence in the region, it’s no wonder the area is consistently a must-visit for Northeasterners. The stellar water quality of Oyster Bay helps produce mouth-watering oysters, representing up to 90 percent of the oysters and up to 40 percent of the hard clams harvested in all of New York State.

Planting Fields Greenhouse
Photo by Meredith Maus
1. With over 400 acres of rolling lawns and woodland paths, Planting Fields Arboretum offers a gorgeous collection of horticulture, much of which is unique to the area. Coming soon is the new “sensory garden” where an interactive pool and sheltered outdoor room promise to deliver tranquility and beauty to all who visit.

Sailboats loading at the WFC
Photo by Meredith Maus
2. Once a hub for manufacturing WWII minesweepers for the U.S. Navy, The WaterFront Center is now an environmental education and recreation not- for-profit community center. After renting a kayak or paddleboard, be sure to check out the historic Christeen, the oldest surviving oyster sloop in North America (sunset and harbor sails are offered).

Sagamore Hill NHS
Photo by Meredith Maus

3. One visit and it’s easy to understand why Theodore Roosevelt, the only U.S. president born in New York City, made Sagamore Hill his “summer White House.” Technically in Cove Neck, east of Oyster Bay Cove, the recently rehabilitated home (as of press time, expected to re-open in mid-July) serves up a slice of history.

Flight Tasting at OBBC
Photo by Meredith Maus

4. The nautical-themed tasting room at the Oyster Bay Brewing Company is standing room only, but after a craft beer flight, who cares! Watch them brew their hoppy IPA or crisp amber ale on premises or fill up your empty growler and enjoy from the comfort of home.

Photo Courtesy Audubon New York

5. Originally designed to provide a protected environment for songbirds in the 1920s, the 12-acre Theodore Roosevelt Sanctuary & Audubon Center was donated to the public by the president’s cousins in his name. Visitors leave with a greater respect for the natural world after enjoying hands-on environmental education programs.

Photo Courtesy Oyster Fest Facebook

6. We had to talk about the oysters, no? The annual Oyster Festival (Oct. 17–18, 2015) attracts over 200,000 people who partake in oysters— raw, fried and stewed. As the East Coast’s largest waterfront festival, you’ll find entertainment, rides, crafts and over 60 food options (just in case oysters aren’t your thing).

Photo by Meredith Maus

7. Rooted in the community since the early 1900s, Bonanza’s is more than your average walk-up snack window. Enjoy a chili dog (it’s boiled!), gooey cheese fries and cool off with creative homemade Italian ice flavors such as margarita, PB&J and cake batter. No wonder this place has been a community staple for generations.

Thursday, July 2, 2015

Sagamore Hill National Historic Site Re-Opening!

Sagamore Hill, Photograph taken by Meredith Maus
Oyster Bay, New York - The main house at Sagamore Hill National Historic Site has been closed to visitors since December 4, 2011.  In the past four years - while the grounds, Visitor Center, and Theodore Roosevelt Museum at Old Orchard have remained open - the 26th President's former home underwent a $10 million renovation.

The pain-staking renovation may not be noticeable to returning visitors - and this is exactly the point.

All of the books, hunting trophies, and furniture were removed from the massive three-story and 28 room mansion during the renovation - which included replacing the roof, repairing the foundation, and rewiring the home's electrical system - and then replaced exactly where they had been.

Sagamore Hill National Historic Site during Renovation
Photograph by Meredith Maus

"We hope that if he walked
through the front door right
now, he would think he was
back during the presidential

- Susan Sarna
Museum Curator

The home is now slated to open its doors again to the public and a grand re-opening celebration has been organized by the staff to commemorate this momentous occasion!

Come one, Come All!
To the Re-opening Celebration & Family Festival! 

Sunday, July 12, 2015 starting at 10 am

  • Reopening address to be presented by Roosevelt family members, public officials, and an appearance by Theodore Roosevelt (portrayed by James Foote)
  • 10 AM - Tale of Two Teddies - Children's book author, Kathleen Bart will be signing books in the book store
  • 11 AM to 4 PM - Children's Activities
    • Arts & Crafts
    • Old-Fashioned Games
    • Pony Rides
    • Rough Rider Enlistment
  • 1 PM - "Rough Riders" Cavalry Demonstration
  • 2 PM - Sagamore Hill Band - Under the direction of Steve Walker
  • 11 AM to 4 PM - Other Performances Demonstrations & Services
    • Long Island Band Organ under direction of Michael Falco
    • Interactive Photobooth provided by Baltimore Photo Social
    • Historic Carriages displayed by Paumanok Driving Club
    • Antique Automobiles displayed by Long Island Sound Region: Classic Car Club
    • Food & Refreshements will be available through vendors on site

Sagamore Hill's gateway community - Oyster Bay - is also busy prepping for the event.  Trolly service will be available from the LIRR station and other parking locations in the downtown to Sagamore Hill to help cut down on congestion at the hill.  Great restaurants and businesses will be open for those interested in making it a whole day affair!