Southampton Community Notes


Where can Elvis impersonators, women in grass skirts, men in makeup and wigs and people in various states of undress meet during the day and not be arrested? If you were thinking my house, you’d be correct. However, Coopers Beach will be the place for all this frolicking as the fifth annual Polar Bear Plunge takes place this Saturday, December 13, at 10 a.m.

The event gets larger each year, and hundreds of participants are expected to jump in the ocean to benefit those in need. The event supports the food pantry, the holiday outreach project and other programs sponsored by Human Resources of the Hamptons. A “Survivor’s Celebration” will follow the plunge with hot refreshments donated by local merchants.

Plungers are sponsored by people donating money for their effort. Participants must register and turn in their sponsor sheets and donations by 9:30 a.m. on the day of the plunge. To download sponsor sheets and obtain instructions, go to or call HRH at 283-6415. Each plunger must sign a waiver on the day of the plunge. Those under 18 must have a waiver signed by a parent or guardian.

The HRH annual holiday outreach effort serves more than 300 needy families in the Southampton area providing food baskets and more than 3,000 gifts. HRH also operates a year-round food pantry, used clothing room, and medical transportation program. Between now and the morning of the plunge, individuals and teams will be gathering donations from sponsors.

The public has been invited to attend the annual “Carols in Candelight” program at the First Presbyterian Church at 2 South Main Street on Sunday, December 14, at 5 p.m. Participants are encouraged to view the beautifully decorated sanctuary and listen to the inspiring seasonal music by the Chancel Concert Choir.

Linda Wittoch of Southampton is trying to raise money to save the veterinary technician position at the Southampton Animal Shelter through the sale of three gingerbread houses.

The houses feature photos of dogs and cats up for adoption that will no longer have the necessary care of the vet tech. Ms. Wittoch created and made the houses herself and spent many houses baking and adding icing and candies. The gingerbread houses are on display at Olde Towne Animal hospital in Southampton and at the shelter in Hampton Bays. Raffle tickets are $5 each and the drawing for the three houses will be at the shelter on December 21.

The Southampton Trails Preservation Society will host a 4-mile walk of Elliston Park in Southampton on Sunday, December 14, at noon. Hikers should meet at the park on Millstone Brook Road. For more information, call Howard Reisman at 283-5376.

The Southampton Historical Museum will host a “Holiday Witch Workshop” for children at the Rogers Mansion on Saturday, December 13, from 10:30 a.m. to noon. Children will learn the Italian story of the Befana witch through storytelling and make a Befana witch project. There is a $5 supplies fee. For reservations call 283-2494.

Congratulations to East End resident John P. Bracken who has become a Fellow of the American College of Trial Lawyers, one of the premier legal associations in the U.S. Mr. Bracken was honored at a recent ceremony held at the 2008 annual meeting of the college in Toronto, Ontario. Fellowship is extended by invitation only to experienced trial lawyers who have achieved the highest standards of ethical conduct, professionalism, civility and collegiality, and who have a minimum of 15 years of trial experience.

Mr. Bracken is a partner in the firm of Bracken & Margolin, LLP of Islandia. He is an alumnus of Hobart College and Fordham University School of Law, and is past president of the New York State Bar Association and the Suffolk County Bar Association.

At the Library

The Rogers Memorial Library’s will screen “Wall-E,” an ecological parable about a world without any inhabitants apart from a battered, industrious robot and his loyal cockroach sidekick on Monday, December 15, at 3 p.m., in the Morris Meeting Room. The Pixar film is directed by Andrew Stanton and is rated G. There is no charge, and movie snacks will be served. Reservations are requested.

There are only a few spaces left in the holiday wreath-making workshop scheduled for Wednesday, December 17, from 10:30 a.m. to noon, and led by horticulturist Maggie Kirwin-Hunter. Registration is required and participants should call to find out what supplies to bring. There will be a $5 fee collected at the door.

For more information and reservations on the above programs, call 283-0774, extension 523.

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