CLOCKWISE FROM TOP LEFT: Dr. Sabrina Strickland and Richard Fertig; Mary Quatroche, Susan Breitenbach and Elaine Saladino; Dottie Herman and Robin Bronk; Debra Halpert, Samantha Yanks, Katie Lee, Beth Ostrosky Stern and Andrea Correale
As we enjoy this weekend’s Fourth of July festivities, I feel that we should also take a moment to remember why we celebrate. It’s not only that we have time away from work to enjoy family barbecues, boating on the bay, fishing or surfing. It is that we can do those things. We are free to choose how we spend this celebratory weekend. We have the freedom to enjoy the expansive beaches, to admire the farmland, to appreciate the light and the preserved natural beauty that defines our area and makes it a mecca for visitors and a home for many.
This Independence Day, we have even more to celebrate here at Hamptons. This issue is our largest and most successful ever, with over 400 pages. What does that mean? Our local economy has turned around, and people are collectively feeling confident and optimistic. The stores and shops are busy, the restaurants and nightlife scene are vibrant, and the spas and fitness studios are bustling. We are turning out in larger numbers to support our vital cultural institutions like the Bay Street Theatre, Guild Hall and the Westhampton Beach Performing Arts Center.
There is also a more relaxed spirit in the air. It is not uncommon to see our friends and neighbors sitting together at Hampton Coffee Company, catching up over a midday cup of cappuccino. The high-powered executive who maybe a year ago was too busy to spend a long weekend out East is today joining his or her family for a bike rride to the local farmers market to stock up on fresh fruits, vegetables, flowers and herbs.
At this time of year, I feel grateful for all the things that enhance our lives and make them rich in this magnificent community we call our home. So spend this weekend with the people you care about and set aside some time to take a break. I’ll see you in town!