• It will be sunny today, with a high temperature near 38 degrees but wind chill values between 25 and 35, with a light and variable wind. It will be mostly clear overnight, with a steady temperature around 30 but wind chill values between 25 and 30. Tuesday will be mostly sunny, with a high near 44. Wednesday will start out cloudy, with a 20 percent chance of showers before 1 p.m. and skies clearing in the afternoon, with a high near 47.
• Leaders from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers’ New York District gathered at the Fire Island Lighthouse on Dec. 17 for an official ceremony kicking off construction on the $1.7 billion Fire Island to Montauk Point (FIMP) coastal-storm risk-management project, which has been in the works for several decades. Read More.
• As we sat down to Thanksgiving dinners, hoping for a return to a new version of normal, the new Omicron variant of the coronavirus was just beginning to wreak havoc on the other side of the world. Now, just three weeks later, Suffolk County is seeing a definitive surge in Covid-19 cases, as national public health experts warn the public to be cautious in their Christmas celebrations in the week ahead. Read More.
• Covid numbers remained heightened over the weekend, with 1,950 new cases reported in Suffolk County on Saturday, Dec. 18, when 10.5 percent of people tested testing positive. The seven-day moving average positivity rate was 9.6 percent. There were 312 people hospitalized with the virus in the county on Saturday, with 58 patients in ICU. Suffolk hospitals have been increasing bed capacity in anticipation of the Omicron wave, and there are currently 854 open hospital beds in the county, 27 percent of all beds, with 83 of those beds in intensive care.
• COVID testing made available by East Hampton Town through CareOne Concierge will be moving, as of today, Dec. 20, from the Town Hall campus on Pantigo Road in East Hampton to the EH Center for Humanity (former CDCH school) at 110 Stephen Hand’s Path in Wainscott. In addition to PCR saliva and nasal swab tests, rapid tests are regularly offered at the testing site, but may be unavailable, again due to high demand. During the holidays, the town cautions that PCR results may take at least 36 hours. PCR tests are at no out-of-pocket cost; rapid tests are $109, or $59 for town or village employees. Testing hours are from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Monday through Friday, and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturday. No appointments are needed, but you can preregister online here. PCR and rapid testing is also available Monday through Friday from 7:30 a.m. to 6:40 p.m. and Saturdays from 7:45 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. at Stony Brook Southampton Hospital’s Parrish Memorial Hall at the corner of Lewis Street and Herrick Road. Here’s how to register. Covid testing is also widely available at urgent care centers and pharmacies throughout the East End. Be prepared, though — lines can be long for walk-in clinics, and those accepting appointments are booking several days out.
• 2021 calendars were all the rage in horrid 2020, and since 2021 proved to not be too much better than 2020, we’re now all betting on a great calendar for 2022. You can get off to the new year on the right foot with the The Beacon’s 2022 Wall Calendar, a downloadable PDF of an old-school wall calendar. Here it is.
The high tides on the East End for the next two days are as follows:
Plum Gut Harbor: 10:27 a.m., 10:58 p.m.
Montauk Harbor: 9:35 a.m., 10:06 p.m.
Greenport: 11:04 a.m., 11:35 p.m.
Mattituck Inlet: 11:50 a.m.
Sag Harbor: 10:59 a.m., 11:30 p.m.
New Suffolk: 12:13 a.m., 12:26 p.m.
South Jamesport: 12:20 a.m., 12:33 p.m.
Shinn. Bay Entrance: 9:22 a.m., 9:59 p.m.
Plum Gut Harbor: 11:08 a.m., 11:43 p.m.
Montauk Harbor: 10:16 a.m., 10:51 p.m.
Greenport: 11:45 a.m.
Mattituck Inlet: 12:25 a.m., 12:28 p.m.
Sag Harbor: 11:40 a.m.
New Suffolk: 12:57 a.m., 1:07 p.m.
South Jamesport: 1:04 a.m., 1:14 p.m.
Shinn. Bay Entrance: 9:56 a.m., 10:40 p.m.
Shinn. Inlet: 8:05 a.m., 8:49 p.m.
And that’s the way things look at dawn’s light here today.