Greenport has been named by Forbes Magazine as one of the 11 prettiest towns and villages in America.
In an article written by freelance writer John Giuffo and carried in the April 12 issue, the author writes what North Fork residents have known all along.
Greenport is a place that “perfectly mixes unpretentious Americana with the trappings of the modern food and wine scene.
Landing a spot on our list of prettiest places, Greenport is perhaps Long Island’s most attractive locale — quaint summer cottages push up against old-school seafood shacks and fancy restaurants,” Mr. Giuffo wrote in his homage to the village
Jason Clampet, online editor of Frommer’s travel guide, is also quoted in the article, describing the village as a place with “small inns, pebbly beaches and fishing heritage” that caters “to visitors who would rather relax than star-gaze.”
Other communities that made the Forbes list are Cooperstown, N.Y.; Gettysburg, Pa.; Montpelier, Vt.; Cedarburg, Wis.; Edenton, N.C.; Hermann, Mo.; Stillwater, Minn.; Charlevoix, Mich.; and Sonoma and Ferndale, Calif. All have equal standing on the list; there is no ranking of the picks.
“The village of Greenport is honored to have been recognized by Forbes magazine for the jewel that it is,” Mayor David Nyce commented. “We are extremely proud of our small, diverse and distinctly unique community.”
The mayor said the community appreciated all of the village’s residents and visitors “for consistently contributing to our ongoing evolution. We look forward to sharing the beauty and history of our quaintly sophisticated village with all of our friends.”
Greenport has always valued its real, working waterfront and not some “Disney” re-creation, said former mayor Dave Kapell. It was under his leadership that Mitchell Park and its marina were developed, creating an attractive downtown space that he hoped would become an economic engine for the village by attracting visitors.
Leueen Miller, Greenport Beautification Committee chairwoman, said she was delighted with the Forbes designation. Motivated by the pride she saw Europeans take in their cities and towns, she and committee members started in small ways to beautify the village, beginning by getting more refuse cans on the downtown streets.
In the past year, the committee has spearheaded renovation of the old schoolhouse on Front Street. After its dedication in May, Ms. Miller said, committee members will be looking for another substantive project that will improve the village.
But all is not rosy in the village, according to Greenport Business Improvement District president Mike Acebo. He warned that Greenport is not going to make anyone’s list of the prettiest places in the future if more residents don’t start taking care of their village.
“We need to work to deserve that honor,” Mr. Acebo said. People dropping cigarette butts and debris on the sidewalks and failing to wash away dropped ice cream makes downtown streets messy, he said.
“It’s great that someone has taken notice of the village of Greenport,” Mr. Acebo said, “but those of us who live here and spend our working days here need to see what others see” and take better care of it.
“We have to support what other people see,” Mr. Acebo said.