There have been a great many holiday events in and around the Village of Mastic Beach in the past weeks; each event showed the incredible ways our community comes together in peace and joy.  

Beginning Thanksgiving, celebrations of good cheer have been spreading throughout the Village. This past week alone, the whole peninsula was in the holiday spirit. Beginning Black Friday and Small-Business Saturday, businesses across the area opened their doors and the holiday songs and cinnamon scents wafted through the air. Everyone got their shopping done (hopefully) and now can take the time to enjoy family, friends, and traditions of the season, and what a wonderful season it is!

Deputy Mayor Bruce Summa and I began the week cleaning up the beach at Smith Point County Park with the Cub Scout Pack 138. I want to extend a hearty thank you for Pack Leader Gary Bollman and the Cubs who did a fantastic job making our community look great. That evening, Deputy Mayor Summa went to the Mastic Beach Yacht Club’s Installation Dinner. What a wonderful event honoring their Board of Directors and Commodore Arthur Curley. The following day we went to the pancake breakfast at the American Legion Arthur H. Clune Post 1533. It was a beautiful morning to have pancakes with our community’s veterans. 

The first days of December proved to be the most joyous in recent years. The Christmas Tree Lighting at St. Jude was on Tuesday, December 1st at

7 p.m. Pastor Reverend Gregory Yacyshyn said prayers. Grand Knight Ken Olivo lit the Christmas Tree, and the faithful sang Christmas carols. Following the event at St. Jude, the J.V. Kavanaugh Knights of Columbus, Columbiettes and Squirettes invited all to their dessert banquet at their hall. They lit their hall tree at 8 p.m. in unison with other Knights of Columbus across the country. 

Grace Lutheran Church kicked off its free Christmas-Movie Evenings on Wednesday, December 2nd and December 9th at 7 p.m. There will be one more movie on andDecember 16th. Check Grace Lutheran’s website www.graceinmb.org for more details. 

Thursday, December 3rd was the Mastic Beach Property Owners Association’s annual Holiday Party with a visit from Santa, and members gathered gifts for underprivileged neighborhood children. 

Saturday, December 5th Trustee Anne Snyder and I decorated Village Hall’s Gazebo Park with decorations donated by the Mastic Beach Chamber of Commerce and the Mastic Beach Property Owners Association. Arik and Nora Getchell, Becky Snyder, Jim Rugen, Ava Torres and Frank Perino from the Village’s Department of Public Works (DPW) came and volunteered to help with the decorating. The Village’s Tree Lighting was at 5 p.m. and was a wonderful event with hot cocoa and cookies. Our local civics represented by Jamie Reason, of the Mastic Peninsula Historical Society; Jill Gross, Treasurer of the Mastic Beach Chamber of Commerce; Lynne DeBona, Financial Secretary of the Mastic Beach Property Owners Association; Chris Riccardi, Vice President of the Pattersquash Creek Civic Association; Jim Rugen from the Mastic Beach Fire Department; Josephine Kramer of the Columbiettes; Officer Bill Erdman and Sergeant Olson from the Suffolk County Police Department. Josh Slaughter came from Legislator Kate Browning’s Office, and Village Trustees Betty Manzella and Anne Snyder were also in attendance. Pastor Ski from the Rushing Wind Biker Church said the prayer and the tree was illuminated by multiple Bone Marrow Transplant Survivor Nora Getchell. We all sang carols and enjoyed each others’ company well into the evening. 

Sunday, December 6th was the Chamber of Commerce of Shirley and the Mastics’ Annual Holiday Parade. Town of Brookhaven Supervisor Ed Romaine, Trustee Manzella and I all enjoyed riding in classic cars. I particularly loved my position in the rumble seat of a 1930 Model A Ford driven and owned by Norm. It was a great parade that showed the amazing community spirit we have here on the peninsula. One of the Grand Marshals was Congress member Lee Zeldin, and the winner of the float contest were the Mastic Fire Department, Mastic Beach Yacht Club and the Mastic Ambulance Company. That evening was also the first night of Hanukkah, before the Menorah Lighting Rabbi Altman hosted a free latke meal for all at the Hebrew Center attended by Village Trustee Betty Manzella, Suffolk County Legislator Kate Browning and Officer Tom Schmidt of the Suffolk County Police Department were in attendance. Following the latkes at the Hebrew Center, all went to Gazebo Park where Rabbi Altman led the prayers and Arthur Rosen lit the Village menorah. 

December 7th was the Pattersquash Creek Holiday Party with desserts, beverages, light snacks, and hors d’oeuvre. They had a special presentation about Elder-Care Law. They are having an Applebee’s Breakfast Fund raiser on Sunday, January 17th from 8–10 p.m. with the proceeds benefiting the William Floyd High School 2016 scholarships to graduates and Operation Cat Committee Feral Cat Program.

Also, at the end of last week, the Choral Society of Moriches, with orchestra and soloists, presented G.F. Handel’s Messiah on Friday, December 11th at 7:30 p.m. at St. Jude Shrine Roman Catholic Church.

In the spirit of giving, we at Village Hall have begun collecting Toys for Tots, and we ask that everyone with the means donate an unwrapped toy. The box located in the lobby of Village Hall is available during regular business hours. Also, St. Jude Outreach, Agape Community Church, and Friends of Shirley and the Mastics are collecting coats, new clothes and new toys for the less fortunate in our area. Please consider giving so others can have a happy holiday. 

I am so proud to be a part of this community and the Mayor of the Village of Mastic Beach. The community spirit and the outpouring of goodwill has been tremendous. A hearty THANK YOU to all the volunteers who donated their time and money to make these events possible. You are the backbone of this community and because of your generosity, the holidays in our Village are incredibly special. Thank you again. 

I’d like to wish you and yours a very Happy Advent, Happy Hanukkah, Happy Solstice, Merry Christmas and Happy New Year. May your 2016 be filled with peace and joy.

Warm holiday wishes,

Incorporated Village of Mastic Beach, Mayor Maura P. Spery