Southold considers 2nd annual NOFO fest

02/09/2011 5:59 PM |

KATHARINE SCHROEDER PHOTO | Concert goers entertain themselves with hula hooping between musical sets at the NoFo Rock and Folk Festival in 2010.

The Southold Town Board is mulling an informal request from former town Supervisor Josh Horton for permission to hold the second annual NOFO Rock and Folk Festival at Strawberry Fields in Mattituck, according to Supervisor Scott Russell.

It’s not certain that’s where he really wants to hold the event, however. Mr. Horton maintains that he plans to have it again at Peconic Bay Winery in Cutchogue, where he held the first edition of the event last summer.

Mr. Horton was at odds with the town for weeks leading up to last year’s festival, which took place without incident in July. The problem had been a discrepancy between the low number of attendees and vendors predicted on the permit application for the festival — 800 people a day — and the much larger throng predicted in public relations material sent by organizers to potential vendors. It put the expected crowd at “well over 15,000.”

The lower prediction turned out to be accurate. Mr. Horton maintained last year that the figure in the letter to vendors was a clerical error.

Supervisor Scott Russell said last week that he had received a call from Mr. Horton asking if the festival could be held at Strawberry Fields town park, a large open sports field on Sound Avenue in Mattituck where many large events are held. Unlike the Cutchogue winery, it is well removed from neighboring businesses.

“I don’t think the venue is a problem,” Mr. Russell said of Strawberry Fields at a Town Board work session Feb. 1.

Board members Vincent Orlando and Al Krupski both said they thought Strawberry Fields would be a better venue for the event.
But Mr. Horton said in a statement Tuesday that “Peconic Bay Winery is committed to hosting NOFO. There’s not much to be said until the permit process is completed.”

At the work session, Mr. Russell added that “we need the correct information on the application” but “if the scope and scale of the event is the same, I don’t see a problem.”

No formal application has been filed yet. Mr. Horton referred further questions to the winery, and did not respond to requests for further comment.

Peconic Bay Winery representatives could not be reached before presstime.

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6 Comment

  • “Unlike the Cutchogue winery, it is well removed from neighboring businesses… Board members Vincent Orlando and Al Krupski both said they thought Strawberry Fields would be a better venue for the event.” Good idea, lets dump our trash into Mattituck. Well thought out.

  • The Community to the west of the Peconic Winery does not want the fest located there nor do we want outdoor amplified music pointed at our homes the rest of the year. For us this is much worse than the helicopter noise which comes and goes and is not an irritant for hours and hours every weekend. Keep your amplified music indoors, accoustic music is welcome outdoors. Be a good neighbor.

  • In the last two years, only two neighbors have come here to discuss the outdoor entertainment. Two more have called on the phone, both leaving messages anonymously. That’s in the whole of two years! I’m here in the office every day, and would be very happy to meet with any of my neighbors and listen to their concerns. The vast majority of our neighbors however, enjoy and even attend our events, and are very supportive. They also understand how important it is to keep agriculture alive and people at work here in Cutchogue, rather than finding themselves later with possibly hundreds of new neighbors, in new houses, with all that construction to listen to. We agree with Supervisor Russell about the location, as our facility is safer, more scenic and better contained. Either way we are delighted to work with the Town Board for another perfect event, that last year pumped hundreds of thousands of dollars into the local economy. Two dozen local families are supported by this winery and her success, and hundreds more by the wineries and farms around us. Our industry’s success helps keep the area beautiful, our taxes low, and benefits Southold’s fiscal health – and is no different than corn mazes, pumpkin picking, berry picking or goat farms, which do the same.
    Jim Silver
    General Manager
    Peconic Bay Winery
    (631) 734-7361

  • I think the issue needs to be clarified. Actually, Mr. Horton called me to see if the Town would have a problem with the NOFO festival being held at Peconic Bay Winery again this year or should he consider moving it to Strawberry fields. I brought that offer to the board for consideration. Personally, I do not believe that the event needs to be moved and Peconic Bay makes a nicer venue for the event. There were some if’s, however, to my response. If the show is the same scope and scale as last year and if the event organizers submitted the whole event to the Town in an application that was complete, accurate and timely, then the process can resolve outstanding issues. There is a review process that should be able to address emergency access issues, etc.. It is important, however, that these reviewing parties know exactly what they are reviewing. Scott

  • please scott!—“correct information”—-could it be that NO “kickback” is involved if it is at the winery. “removed from neighboring businesses” !?!?!? you “hypocrite”!!!!! NO!!!!! PROMOTING BUSINESSES UNLESS I AM THE “HEAD HANCHO”!!!!!!! it also seems that you are a “control freak”—are you still married?

  • WRONG ANSWER!!!!!!!