By Amanda Barbara
Memorial Day Weekend was filled with new visitors and familiar faces to our little slice of the island. For many that live in Kismet, we felt an air of sadness going into the holiday weekend. With the tragic passing of some of our own, the streets did not feel the same.
Words cannot even describe the loss that was felt with the passing of Joyce Cole. She was such a large part of the Kismet community; it is impossible to think of our town without her. I was lucky to call her my neighbor for over 15 years and there wasn’t a morning in the summer that she wasn’t enjoying her porch or on the street with one of her grandchildren.
Jeanne Lieberman remembers her as “always a lady in looks and demeanor, through good times and stormy, her smile was constant. She was the voice of reason and common sense, reflecting on issues with grace. Her story is embedded in Kismet, impossible to separate.”
Her story and memory will live on through all who knew and admired her. Our hearts are with the Cole family during this difficult time as they mourn the loss of a true matriarch. Business will continue because, as Ashley shared with me, that is the way she would have wanted it. The Kismet Inn staff also said goodbye to a long time friend, Chris Lanzarotta, known to many as “Lanz,” a bartender there for many years. At 34 years old, he suffered cardiac arrest and passed away on Friday, the eve of Memorial Day Weekend. If you didn’t have the pleasure of knowing Chris, then you sadly missed out on an amazing person. Andrea Wikso said it best as she shared, “Chris was the kind of guy who was always up for a good time, he had a very laid back attitude and made those around him feel at ease very quickly. One thing that is certain is that in his unfairly short time on this planet, he touched a lot of lives and leaves behind a large number of friends.”
Kismet also says farewell to Richard Kavan, Jr. who passed away on Memorial Day, while on a golfing vacation with friends. Kismet suffered such incredible loss as summer began. As the weather gets warmer and the days continue, we will remember these community members and all the joy and memories they created on our streets.
Congratulations are in order for Jackson Davis, who just graduated from Emerson College, Sam Whitney for receiving her masters from Bridgewater State University and Taryn Phelan for her masters from Mercy College.
The Kismet Inn Marina was buzzing on Memorial Day Saturday as the Dirty Vice Band kicked off the weekend with live music. Dana and Joe Hanner hosted the band on the roof of their deck at LaFamiglia. There was a tribute to Joyce Cole including a moment of silence in her honor before the band began to play. There was not an open slip around and many said they had never seen the docks so full. People were dancing and enjoying the array of original songs and covers of rock and soul classics.
The 44th Annual Kismet Fire Department Installation Dinner took place on Saturday, June 3, at Surf’s Out. Big congratulations to Joe McKeehan on receiving his 28 years of service award as a firefighter and ex-commissioner. Joe has retired from the department but we thank him for all of his hard work and leadership over the years. He is one of the reasons we have our current firehouse today!
A big announcement also came last week that took the entire Fire Island community by storm. Kismet’s Tim Mooney, president of Fire Island Ferries, and James Mallott, mayor of Ocean Beach, announced the discontinuation of the 1 a.m. ferry from Ocean Beach to Bay Shore. The Kismet community will be most affected by the announcement of the restricted Water Taxi service. The last water taxi departing from Ocean Beach going west will now be at midnight instead of the usual 2 a.m. This will prohibit staff members of the Inn and Out to venture to Ocean Beach after their dinner shifts. No one is quite sure how limiting access off the island will shake Fire Island as a whole but we hope many will still come over to support our restaurants.
The Kismet Market opened Memorial Day Weekend celebrating 49 summers of business. Andy and his gang have the grill going for your early morning egg sandwich and ice coffee. Stop in and take a look at their new summer Kismet gear. They are open seven days a week with limited hours Monday through Thursday.
The Kismet Inn is now open seven days a week for those who want to grab a bite during the week. Zantis Misfits will be performing on Saturday, June 24, at 11 p.m., as the island gears up the weekend before the July 4.
Surf’s Out will only be open on the weekends until Tuesday, June 20. If you are looking for some Surf’s Out inspired menu items and find yourself at the Walt Whitman Mall in Huntington, we have the perfect spot for you! Stop into Saks Fifth Avenue to support our very own Dean Cirella, owner of Surf’s Out, at his new restaurant, Gastronomy. They are open for lunch and dinner seven days a week.
The Pizza Shack and Red Wagon Emporium will be open on the weekends until the end of June. The Kismet Klaw Flea Market 2.0 will be hosted at the Kismet Fire House on Saturday, June 10, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sunday, June 11, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. On Friday, June 23, there will be a screening of “Kismet’s 15 Minutes of Fame” at the Firehouse. If you plan to attend, make sure you RSVP and wear your formal attire.
Until next time, enjoy the sunshine, plant your flowers, and get ready for an amazing 2017 summer season.