Captain Riverhead
The Peconic River separates Riverhead and Riverside, but it can also help to bring both communities together.

The Flanders, Riverside, Northampton Community Association has partnered with the newly formed Peconic River Community Development Alliance to apply for and receive a $20,000 grant from the Long Island Community Foundation to hire a community organizer to help engage community members in activities surrounding the Peconic River.

The Alliance was formed in January of 2016 with representation from Riverhead and Southampton towns, community members and business leaders.

The groups plan to use the grant to hire a community organizer to develop a community engagement and outreach campaign, recruit volunteers to engage in the outreach process, and to work with local partners to create a website and social media presence.

The focus of each of these components will be to engage community members in Peconic River community events and opportunities, and to spur economic development.

The Alliance has partnered with FRNCA and the Town of Southampton as co-applicant on this grant.

“We are very pleased to have received this grant,” said Vince Taldone, treasurer of FRNCA and a member of the Board of the newly formed Alliance. “It is another significant step in the overall revitalization effort within the Riverside/Riverhead communities.”

The Alliance will post a job description and employment listing for a part time community organizer shortly after its next meeting in May.

“The work of the Alliance, through this grant opportunity, is a natural outgrowth of and complement to the work our office had done in Riverside over the past several months,” said Siris Barrios, also a member of the Alliance board, and community liaison for the Revitalize Riverside effort.

Other members of the Alliance Board include Riverhead Business Improvement District member Larry Oxman; local resident and media specialist Diane Tucci; Riverhead Community Development Agency Director Chris Kemper and Southampton Town Deputy Supervisor Frank Zappone.

The Alliance is actively seeking community members and local organizations to join its board of directors.

Also this week, Riverside Rediscovered, the community group working to help redevelop Riverside, announced a series of monthly $500 Riverside Five grants for community activities.

The Riverside Five grant program is an initiative to revitalize downtown Riverside through five community-chosen priorities, tentatively: River Beautiful, River Public Access, Job Creation, Health + Education and Public Safety. Further descriptions are online here.

Here are the criteria:

  • The idea fits the triple-bottom-line mission of Riverside Rediscovered and at least one of the Riverside Five initiatives supporting downtown revitalization.
  • The idea needs to be feasible and implementable within 60 days of being selected, with a date and location secured prior to receiving the grant.
  • Everyone is reasonably able to directly and immediately experience the benefits of what the grant is supporting.
  • A detailed budget of expenses, and an emailed photo of receipts after to qualify for future grants.
  • To allow more Riverside Rediscovered members to participate, ideas and applicants that didn’t immediately receive a prior grant will be prioritized.
  • You must be a member of Riverside Rediscovered. If you aren’t already, simply register here.

Beth Young
Beth Young is an award-winning local journalist who has been covering the East End since the 1990s. She began her career at the Sag Harbor Express and, after receiving her Masters from the Columbia University Graduate School of Journalism, has reported for the Southampton Press, the East Hampton Press and the Times/Review Media Group. She founded the East End Beacon website in 2013, and a print edition in 2017. Beth was born and raised on the North Fork. In her spare time, she tinkers with bicycles, tries not to drown in the Peconic Bay and hopes to grow the perfect tomato. You can send her a message at

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Please prove you're human: