2019: A CALL TO ACTION
The first thing we can say is this: Our plans in 2019 involve you. Lots of you. The bay has big problems, and its going to take all of us working together — local citizens, schools, local civic associations, The Rotary Clubs and The Chambers of Commerce, The Lions and Kiwanis Clubs, The fishing and boating and hunting associations, the marinas and yacht clubs and ferry services, the “Power Squadrons,” the paddle boarders and surfers, the sailors, all of us from The South Shore past and present, and last but not least to all those among our political leadership, from our Town Boards, and those working for our bay and our environment at the county, state, and federal levels.
Make no mistake about it — the bay is gravely ill and getting worse.. Nitrogen levels from septics and cesspools, from lawn fertilizers and runoff, and from atmospheric deposition, are triggering and feeding the massive algal blooms that have done so much damage to the bay, its flora and fauna, and to our way of life.
It is Save The Great South Bay’s mission to revitalize the bay and with it The South Shore. We believe that the bay is a symptom of a sick mainland. The 36 creeks that feed The Great South Bay through sixteen shore communities ( We count Massapequa, Copaigue, Amityville, Lindenhurst, Babylon, Bay Shore, West Islip, Islip, East Islip, Oakdale – Great River, Sayville, Bayport, Bluepoint, Patchogue, Bellport, Mastic ) have been much abused by runoff, polluted groundwater, nitrogen from septics and fertilizer, by silting, by dams and spillways erected over the centuries. We believe that if you cure the creeks you can begin to save the bay.
That is why we established The Creek Defender Program. On April 13th, we are holding Creek Defender Day. We are in the process of identifying Creek Defenders for each of the communities listed above so that on April 13th, we can have 16 simultaneous clean ups / swamp forest plantings. The clean ups involve everything from car tires and shopping carts to cans and bottles and bags.
The “swamp forest” is a native planting consisting in this case of 16 different types of bushes, trees, shrubs and grasses, arranged so as to mimic how in nature this native fauna would grow. This reestablishes habitat, it starves and shades out invasives, and it acts to filter the groundwater before it reaches the creek and then the bay,
A typical clean up fills 50-100 bags, much of it plastic bottles, bags, aluminum cans, bottles, styrofoam, and of course balloons. (Remember: Balloons blow. Never release them).
BAY FRIENDLY YARDS
The Bay Friendly Yards Program will kick into high gear this year, If you haven’t yet downloaded our E-BOOK, HOW TO CREATE YOUR OWN BAY FRIENDLY YARD, CLICK HERE!
Bay Friendly Yards are native plantings arranged as nature would find them on your property, depending on soil, water and light. Such plantings of trees, shrubs, bushes, and grasses don’t need fertilizers or pesticides, or excess water. We are putting back what was there, restoring habitat, drawing from Long Island’s natural beauty while improving groundwater quality through the filtering effects of bioswales, rain gardens, and a healthy biome. What if you and your neighbors opted for habitat for the birds, bees, bugs, and bats. What if a neighborhood could become a nature sanctuary? It can all start with your yard.
We will have a couple of Bay Friendly Yards planted this spring on Candee Avenue in Sayville this Spring. May see other neighbors also plant for the bay, both on this street, and on all the streets leading to the bay where street runoff is an issue.
Jan 31st “Talisman”Record Release Party at The Grey Horse. 7:30 PM Nick Russell is donating 10% of the proceeds from the album to Save The Great South Bay. Come on out and speak to us about our bay. We will have our hoodies out for sale.
Feb 2nd Chowder Contest at The Snapper Inn, Oakdale, 12-2. We’d never miss this one or anything, and this year we .will have our own info and merchandise table.
Feb 2nd A Round For The Bay Fort Bryguy Brian or “Briguy’ was a bartender of some note at The Casino at Davis Park, at The Sayville Inn, and in other notable South Shore bars over the decades. His daughter Alisa has organized a pub crawl in his honor, with proceeds going to SGSB. The event is SOLDOUT, but we will be posting the itinerary as we are shuttled by bus to each of five venues, retracing Bryguy’s life on the South Shore. Shecky and the Twangtones will be playing somewhere along the route!
Feb-March: Local Planning Sessions For Creek Defender Day
April 13th Long Island Creek Defender Day From Massapequa to Mastic, we will be cleaning up along the 36 creeks that feed The Great South Bay. Where we can, we will also be planting Swamp Forests. If you wish to volunteer / act as a Creek Defender in your community, email us at [email protected]
April 13th Cask Festival Blue Point Brewery. Afterparty?
April 21-22nd Earth Day Celebrations
April 27th Blue Island 5K Run for the Bay
May 17 The Bayman’s Ball at The Snapper Inn. Our first gala! Tickets On Sale Soon!
June 7 World Environment Day Blue Point Brewery. The local is global!
June 14th “Drink The Bay Clean” Day We need a day to celebrate the fine beer Blue Point Brewery has brewed for us!
June 21st Summer Solstice Party — Music, oysters, Drink The Bay Clean, something pagan. We’ll figure it out.
July 13th West Sayville Boat Basin Tiki Party
August 9th-11th Sayville Summerfest
August 23-25th Seafood Festival West Sayville
August 25 5th Annual GSB Paddleboard Race — Once more South Shore Paddleboards and The Bay Shore Yacht Club team up!
August 25 Post Paddle Party Bay Shore Afterparty
September 8-9 Dockside Family Festival
September 14th Oysterfest at Blue island, West Sayville. Always a blast, and for a good cause!
September 21st Great South Bay Sailing Regatta — Details TBD.
September 29th Third Annual Oyster Fest Tres Palms Babylon
October 18 Save the Bay Day Yacht Club Oakdale Concert
This hardly exhausts our events for this year. There will .be presentations, restaurants and bars seeking to throw an event for us. A full calendar, but then there is much to be done. Subscribe to our newsletter (at the very bottom of our homepage, and stay informed.
Came ask us to speak before your group — our civic, your library group, the rotary club, the chamber of commerce, your school. If so, email us at [email protected]. Awareness is crucial if we are to win back our bay. Or become an advocate yourself. Here on our blog / newsroom, we give voice to those willing to speak truth to power, to those ready to speak for the bay. Back a hundred years ago, they called such journalists muckrakers. and we are here to continue that tradition. If you have a topic you’d like to write on, like the spraying of methoprene on our marshes, The Bethpage Plume, the spraying of glyphosate on Fire Island, illegal dumping, bad coastal management policy, overdevelopment, etc, please send your story to [email protected]. You can also subscribe to our newsletter (from the home page (bottom right) and to our YouTube channel to stay engaged. It is up to us to speak for our bay.
Save The Great South Bay is for 2019 becoming a Membership driven organization. As we enter into our seventh year, we see the importance of being able to scale, to bringing about concrete change on the ground, and in every community. With our Creek Defender and Bay Friendly Yards Programs, we seek to address the problems the bay faces ‘at scale,’ with major reintroductions of native plantings all along The South Shore. Habitat restoration, creek by creek, community by community, block by block, yard by yard. Logistically, it will only happen with people to advocate for this in every community, people to organize the effort towards local habitat restoration. We need members to support these local efforts.
Count on us to organize local cleanups and native plantings via The Creek Defender and Bay Friendly Yard programs. The bay is a symptom; it’s the mainland that is sick. The cure starts in every community, every yard.Look to us to educate and to advocate, to promote policies that will lead to Habitat Restoration in the bay, to speak truth to power. Save The Great South Bay will be offering benefits and discounts for members on a rolling basis throughout the year, working with local merchants and sponsors
For the bay to really take a step forward, we will need the support of local businesses and of community leaders. Restoring habitat at the scale we intend to will require some help. Over the past years, we have been strongly supported by Oakdale Yacht, Blue Point Brewing Company, Swell Taco, Tres Palms, Long Island Strong, The Snapper Inn, Blue Island Oysters, South Shore Paddle Boards, Bay Shore Yacht Club, Camelot Tents, Long Island Natives, Soleil Furniture, Old Soldier Apparel, Desktop Alert, and now for 2019, Coldwell Banker.of Queens and Long Island. It is through the support of local business that we are able to organize The South Shore to save its bay.
Click Here to explore our various sponsor packages. From there we can customize it to suit your needs.
2019 will be a great year for the bay, thanks to you!