One of the North Fork’s newest holiday traditions pays homage to the area’s maritime heritage.
The New Suffolk Water Front held its second annual sailboat lighting on Saturday.
The boat, an eight foot American Sail Inc. vessel, is once again on loan from New Suffolk residents, brothers Paul and Ted Maffei.
The boat’s decor incorporate recycled materials, this year made by New Suffolk Waterfront board member Lauren Grant. Similarly last year featured a string of Christmas lights studded with aluminum cans made by New Suffolk Common School students.
Grant began collecting empty vitamin bottles with the intent to repurpose them.
“Each time I empty a bottle, it kills me to throw them away because they are so colorful,” Graham said, shortly before the boat was lit.
The choice of centerpiece is fitting considering the New Suffolk Waterfront is the launch site of a weekly sailboat race around Robins Island in the summer. New Suffolk was also the site of the U.S. Navy’s first submarine trials.
The sailboat will remain lit at night throughout the holiday season.