Montauk Community Notes, November 13


On Saturday an Asian couple dropped in at Atlantic Beach Realty. The first question asked of sales associate MaryAnn Peluso, was “how much is a house on the ocean?” Our visitors spoke heavily accented English and made instant mental calculations to an unfamiliar currency.Budding journalistic curiosity prompted me to ask, “Where exactly are you from?” The wife laughed and said, “Beijing, because of APEC … and I think you don’t have too many visitors from Beijing!”

After the couple left, we Googled APEC which takes place this week in Beijing and will be attended by President Obama. We learned that air pollution is 16 times the legal limit in Beijing. Drivers there in recent weeks have been restricted to odd or even license plate days, as government officials try last-ditch measures to reduce vehicle emissions. Beijing residents were encouraged to take rare vacations out of the country this week to decrease extreme street crowding in Beijing.

“Think about it,” MaryAnn said. “Here we are in Montauk, breathing the cleanest air on Earth.”

Groton, Connecticut residents Reggie Moten and high school-aged Farad Wood also stopped by the office on Saturday, toting a clear plastic bin holding what my son calls, “the world’s best cookies.” Readers have probably encountered Mr. Moten on his seasonal visits. He gives a packet of generously sized cookies in return for a donation to Arise, a venture “dedicated to enhancing health, beauty and education for a healthy society.” Since 1997, Mr. Moten has worked toward the purchase and renovation of older commercial buildings to be remodeled into culinary schools for disadvantaged kids and teens in urban areas like Harlem, Newark and Atlanta.

Mr. Moten, described by his respectful assistant as an engineer, chemist and master gardener, sends this message: “Don’t ever stop having fun. And remember, the cookies are all made by students.”

The Montauk Chamber has announced that this year’s End of Season Gala will honor Vincent E. “Vinnie” Grimes as Person of the Year, this Saturday, November 15, at East by Northeast Restaurant in Montauk.

“Vinnie has given a lifetime of service to his community which is why the Montauk Chamber selected him as Person of The Year for 2014,” according to chamber executive director Laraine Creegan. Born in Montauk in 1928 and raised here, he and wife Susan raised their two sons, Keith and Jimmy Grimes in Montauk. Mr. Grimes was very involved with scouting. He became a Boy Scout at age 11 and went on to be a scout leader in adulthood.

His many accomplishments include active membership in the Montauk Fire Department. Fire Commissioner in 1968, he is also an active member of the Lions Club. He was one of the founders of the Blessing of the Fleet in 1955, and instrumental in the founding of the Montauk Horse Show, which took place for 30 years.

Saturday’s gala at ENE opens at 6:30 p.m. with a one-hour open bar. Dinner and dancing begin at 7:30 p.m. Music provided by D.J. Matt Coss. Tickets, $80 per person, may be purchased at the chamber office this week, by phone at (631) 668-2428 or visit Please make reservations as soon as possible.

Boy Scout Troop 136 of Montauk proudly announce its newest Eagle Scout, Phillip Thomas Schnell, son of Donald and Christine Schnell. Eagle Scout Court of Honor was held November 2 at the Montauk Firehouse. Phillip’s Eagle Scout project involved building fifteen medical backboards out of plywood and mahogany, which were donated to the Muriel Gordon Foundation of Central Islip. From there, the backboards and other donated medical supplies were shipped to Haiti and Jamaica. A June 2014 graduate of East Hampton High School, Phillip is currently a freshman at SUNY Maritime College in the Bronx.

Happy birthday this week to former Montauk School teacher, Jean Ruggles, who is celebrating her special day on November 11.

According to Montauk Community Church pastor Bill Hoffmann, the top two winning teams at last Friday night’s Friends of Erin Pub Quiz at Gurney’s Inn were made up of all local teachers. Pastor Bill, who competed at the quiz along with wife Val, commented our teachers have proven themselves unbeatable at recent Pub Quiz events.

First prize for this year’s Scarecrow Contest has been awarded to Douglas Elliman Real Estate, Montauk office, for “Ursula.” Second prize went to “Pancake Man” at John’s Pancake House and “Fruit Lady” of the Candied Anchor won third-place honors.

A few tickets remain for Montauk Youth’s annual Bus Trip to NYC, January 11. Tickets will be sold at the Montauk Playhouse this Friday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., or till tickets sell out, for “Aladdin” at the New Amsterdam Theater. $95 per person includes mezzanine level tickets for the 3 p.m. performance as well as Jitney transportation. The bus leaves Montauk at 7 a.m., allowing for several hours of free time in Manhattan, then departs directly after the show ends.

The Friends of the Montauk Library Winter Movie series continues on Wednesday starting at 7 p.m. Two documentaries from Hamptons Take 2 Film Festival will screen, a short, “My Life in the Canyon of Heroes,” describes life through the eyes of a Wall Street “charging bull” and feature film, “Zipper: Coney Island’s Last Wild Ride.” Free movies are from 7 to 9 p.m. in the lower level Suzanne Koch Gosman room.

Come to Montauk Community Church this Friday, November 14, at 7 p.m. to enjoy an hour of live acoustic music featuring Lori Hubbard with some of her musical family members and friends. The coffeehouse is free and open to the public.

Ms. Hubbard also shares music and songs with kids of preschool age on Saturday at the Montauk Library at 2 p.m. Sing along to celebrate autumn days. Older siblings welcome.

On Sunday, from 12:30 to 2 p.m. the library Book Discussion Group discusses “The Roundhouse,” a novel by Louise Erdrich, available at the library’s circulation desk.

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