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There’s a day here on the East End that’s referred to as Tumbleweed Tuesday. It’s a name for the day after Labor Day, when the visitor traffic supposedly ends and tumbleweeds can be seen blowing across the road.

It’s more of a Hamptons thing. On the North Fork, that day doesn’t really exist — not anymore at least.

With the Maritime Festival in September and pumpkin-picking in October things only begin to slow down in November and December, when there is still lots of shopping and plenty of holiday activities to keep people out on the roads. Want to come to the North Fork when it’s slow? Maybe wait for January. Snowflake Saturday, anyone?

Writing these monthly letters has been easy this year, because there’s a pretty obvious theme to the seasons. But October is a sensitive time, when the roads clog up and local frustrations come to a boil.

All I can say is: Be safe, everyone, and have fun out there. If you’re just coming out for the day and picking up this magazine, remember to be respectful and sensitive to the fact that this a tough time of year for the folks living and working out here, whose 20-minute commutes turn to 45.

For this month’s issue, we focused on the bounty that attracts people to this area in late summer and early fall.

In the pages, which can be found at most local restaurants and wineries, you’ll find a profile of vineyard managers, silent partners in the winemaking process, who deserve just as much credit as the vintners themselves but receive almost none. The story was written at the urging of former Lenz winemaker Eric Fry, who retired this year and wanted us to pay tribute to the other side of the operation.

A piece on Slow Food East End and locally grown food, a feature on one of the North Fork’s newest farms and a profile of a pumpkin-farming family also appear in this month’s issue. And, yes, we included a U-pick pumpkin guide to help visitors along on their journey here this month.

Before long, those pumpkins will turn to pumpkin pie and we’ll be wearing heavy jackets and wondering where autumn went.

Let’s not let these next few weeks pass us by without sharing in the pleasures of fall on the North Fork.

Grant Parpan
Content Director