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Arts and Music

Working the Waters: Maritime Culture of Long Island

All Long Island residents are welcome to come out Saturday, Sept. 28 and Sunday, Sept. 29 when Long Island Traditions presents “Working the Waters: Maritime Culture of Long Island” in collaboration with the NY Marine Trades Association Toby Boat Show in Massapequa. “Working the Waters” will present to the public first-hand accounts about the contemporary and historic traditions of commercial and recreational fishermen, the factors affecting these traditions and their future on Long Island.

The program is the culminating event of ongoing documentation by Long Island Traditions Folklorist and executive director Nancy Solomon. Since 1987 Solomon has been documenting the culture and traditions of Long Island maritime tradition bearers, ranging from decoy carvers and driftwood painters to trap builders, boat model makers and net menders.

Highlights of this event include the first Long Island home cooks Manhattan clam chowder contest, which will be judged by New York Magazine’s food editor Hugh Merwin and others; decorative decoy carvers Ken Budny, Tom Stewart and Pete Palumbo, fishermen Bill Hamilton, George Rigby and Chuck Tekula and boat model builder Chris Hale. A Storytelling tent featuring marine trade workers, boat builders and retired or former clammers will be part of the activities, along with children’s fishing lessons taught by a master recreational fisherman.

Admission for the Boat Show and festival is $10 ($8 for seniors, children 12 and under are free) and will take place at Tobay Beach on Ocean Parkway in Massapequa. Working the Waters Festival hours are 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The Tobay Boat Show event hours are Thursday and Friday, Sept. 27 and 27 from 12 p.m. to 6 p.m., and Saturday and Sunday, Sept. 28 and 29 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. For details, including information about the clam chowder contest, visit or call Long Island Traditions at 516-767-8803 or the NY Marine Trades Association at 631-691-7050.