My family, including grandparents, grew up in the summers in Hampton Bays since the 1950s, in a house my father built near East Landing Beach. The house is still in our family.
Our greatest joy was the beach at East Landing, walking east from Washington Heights Road, to the Great Peconic Bay. It was a partly rocky beach with a wide strip of clean sand where our family and neighboring families would put down our blankets and umbrellas and all enjoy the sun, jingle shells, horseshoe crabs, seaweed and saltwater as we snacked on our saltwater taffy and played and swam in the water.
We walked together from our blankets to the Squires Pond inlet and the Shinnecock Canal. We boated, water-skied, fished and got some great clams for chowder at that beach. Everyone respected the beach and always left it as pristine as we found it.
I am writing to you as, this recent Mother’s Day, I went with my brother to that beach and for the first time in over 60 years found it to be as beautiful as we remembered, the best ever! We were awestruck at how even more splendorous it was. Wide! Sandy! Even at low tide, the dark rocks were the most beautiful, with the green seaweed decorating them and the white rocks up near the roadway lined perfectly in a row, as if a designer has taken over.
It was endless beauty, and the grasses were teeming with wildlife sounds, and the birds were singing. It took our breath away.
Our conclusion is that this pandemic is what it took to keep the four-wheel-drive vehicles and careless humans away from churning up that beach, leaving all sorts of human-caused evidence of erosion and destruction, as they have been allowed to do for years now. They and the Southampton town supervisor had essentially destroyed that beach and pristine environment, and it took God and nature two months to restore it.
Please help us keep this beach and all our shoreline as it was meant to be, just as it is now, after nature’s repair. We need your help now while it is still free of the back-to-usual humans and their careless behaviors.
The earth has been repairing, and we feel we are reminded and called to be its cooperative caretakers. Like-minded citizens of Hampton Bays are encouraged to speak up now! Find another solution for the four-wheelers.
Email Bob DeLuca at firstname.lastname@example.org and also call 631-283-6055 and ask the Southampton Town Board to save all our beaches as they were solely created to be, for both the safety and enjoyment of all our walk-on local families and residents. The new normal.
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