By Kirsten Corssen
Seven Unwritten Fire Island Rules
Fire Island is an enchanted place exiled from the “real world” where your problems are left behind. You’re able to live very simply and never be too far away from the beach. After living here for a period of time you can really see this laid back life style first hand. The vibe of the island gives one a certain feeling of freedom that is unlike anywhere else.
Although this lifestyle may seem so free and easy, there is a list of unwritten rules that the islanders follow, making it easy to spot out the locals from the tourists.
- NEVER Take Pictures of Deer: As soon as you’re seen wearing jeans and a sweat shirt with the words “Fire Island Lifeguard Off Duty” taking picture of a deer, you’re obviously not a local. Okay us locals may be able to sneak in some pictures of deer every now and then, at least turn it into a funny Snapchat to your friends in Massachusetts who have never even seen a deer before. But other than that, taking picture of the deer is a total rookie move. Besides if you took a picture of every deer you’d see, your camera roll would be full at the end of the summer filled with just pictures of deer.
- Always Have Cash: There are no banks on Fire Island. The ferry sells tickets on a cash-only basis, so without it you’re swimming home. Yes there may be an ATM at some of the markets, but you’re getting hit with a $4 fee charge. You never want to be that chick on the ferry without cash and only realize this half way across the bay, or the guy at the bar who ran out of cash and asks his friends where the closest bank is. Have fun with that!
- Don’t Wear Shoes: Flip flops are acceptable (at times) but we all know better than to walk off that ferry wearing closed toe shoes. Closed toe shoes are for winter weather only, and there isn’t anything cold about summer, besides maybe the Rocket Fuels.
- Never Leave Your Bike Unattended: We’ve all be there – that awkward friend who doesn’t have a bike and is forced to walk all the way from Atlantique to Kismet. We’ve also been that friend who had one too many drinks and was convinced it was okay to “borrow” this random bike left unlocked on someone’s front porch. If you spent all your cash on the ferry ride and can’t buy a lock, at least sharpie your address and phone number so when the thief wakes up with a headache they know where they can return it.
- Easy on the Rocket Fuels: Rocket Fuels are a Fire Island classic, but should be drunk in moderation for many reasons. First, it’s summer, you are going to wake up tomorrow and obviously put on a bathing suit, and drinking too many Rocket Fuels will add some unwanted rolls. Second, they are called Rocket Fuels for a reason – they send you to the moon. But with the amount of liquor jammed into one drink, it can take you to many places you didn’t intend to go.
- Ice = Gold: A simple bag of ice that would normally cost about two dollars on the mainland skyrockets in price as soon as you step off that ferry. Yes it may just be frozen water, but on Fire Island it’s a precious commodity.
- Never Shower During Rush Hour: Atlantique rush hour that is… anywhere between 3 and 6 p.m. All the locals know that these are the hours that the “visitors” like to rinse off before piling back on the ferry to return to the boring mainland. They can’t get back into their minivans covered in all that sand!
So now consider yourself advised, if you want to fit in on Fire Island, and not look like a total tourist, just simply follow our unwritten (now written) rules. Folks will be thinking you’re a local within just a couple days.
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