Last May, we gave you Ten Reasons Why: We Love Baltimore. Well, we thought it’d be fun to share with you Ten Reasons Why we love all of our home cities! First up, the home of our headquarters – Long Island. Take a look at Caitlin Havron’s Ten Reasons Why: We Love Long Island.
1. The Beach: Being an island lends itself to some scenic views – running at dawn on the Sunken Meadow boardwalk and watching the sun rise over the Long Island Sound, hitting the Hamptons, learning to swim in the Great South Bay, seeing historic lighthouses, and surfing on the south shore. It’s quite a blessing when all of these activities become part of “the norm” of living on Long Island.
2. New York City: It’s common on LI to say we live in the “shadow of the greatest city in the world,” especially since most of our families originated from there and we’re biased. ;) But being just a train ride away from Broadway, spectacular museums, Time Square, the Statue of Liberty, incredible restaurants, Madison Square Garden and Central Park, certainly has its perks.
3. The Food: You know what comes of immigrant families moving to the suburbs? A cultural explosion! Bagels, pizza, egg sandwiches, delis, butcher shops, fusion restaurants, fresh-caught fish, bakeries, Blue Point oysters, buttered rolls… Supposedly it’s the minerals in our tap water that make our food taste so good, but we know better – it’s our people that know how to cook!
4. The History: President Theodore Roosevelt raised his family at Sagamore Hill in Oyster Bay, F. Scott Fitzgerald was inspired to write “The Great Gatsby,” George Washington’s Setauket spy ring helped win the Revolutionary War, Charles Lindbergh took off in The Spirit of St. Louis from Roosevelt Airfield, and First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy was born & worked here (while her cousins famously destroyed their East Hampton estate in “Grey Gardens”). Even Adolf Hitler’s nephew made a new life for himself in Patchogue, after serving in the American military in the war against his uncle! Long Island is home to many significant events and notable people.
5. The East End: Nowhere else could you drink some of the best wine in the country, see a Baldwin brother on the beach, get discounted designer duds, and eat farm-fresh food all in the same day than the east end of Long Island. Home to the Hamptons, the North Fork, stunning vineyards, picturesque farms and gorgeous beaches, it’s a wonderful place to visit year-round.
6. Nautical Hotspot: Being surrounded by water isn’t just great for beaches – it’s a natural landscape for fisherman, boaters, sailors, and people of the sea! Learning to swim becomes second nature, and many families here have made extra cash by clamming and fishing. We’re proud to be from an island full of former and current “diggers.” J
7. The Humor: We think we’re funny, and apparently other people do, too. New Yorkers are direct, and Long Islanders are no different, but they also love pushing the envelope – Jerry Seinfeld, Eddie Murphy, Billy Crystal, Rosie O’Donnell, Rodney Dangerfield, Howard Stern and Amy Schumer all grew up here!
8. Sports: We’re dedicated, loyal (and sometimes a little too hardcore) sports fans that love arguing about what’s a better team – Yankees vs. Mets, Islanders vs. Rangers, or Giants vs. Jets. Before AYS, this LI girl spent summers pouring beer and serving hot dogs for our minor league baseball team, The Ducks, and we’ve gotten to staff Citi Field in recent years for All-Star Games and the World Series. Even though we can no longer see the Islanders at the Nassau Coliseum, they’ll always be a Long Island team to us. J
9. The Drinks: Long Island is home to several stunning and delicious vineyards, including Channing Daughters, Wolffer Estate, Bedell Cellars, and Martha Clara, to name a few. But in recent years, Long Island has really stepped up their beer game. For the longest time, the only two functioning breweries physically on Long Island were Blue Point and Brooklyn Brewery. Now, you can taste unique beers all over, including Great South Bay, Montauk, Crooked Ladder, Fire Island, Southampton, Port Jefferson, Long Ireland, Moustache, and Greenport.
10. The People: Most of our families came through New York City as immigrants, and eventually came out to raise their children in the Long Island neighborhoods. Long Island is full of former city families that came here to achieve the American Dream. It’s exactly what our forefathers envisioned for this country – a safe haven for the persecuted. Long Island is home to many diverse cultures, and could be considered the first American suburban melting pot. We’re different in many ways, but we’re all PROUD of where we’re from!
-Caitlin Havron, AYS Long Island
Ten Reasons Why: We Love Long Island s part of our Ten Reasons Why blog series. If you have any suggestions for future Ten Reasons Why features, let us know in the comments section! To love Long Island alongside our team, click here.