Featured Story
03/27/16 2:00pm
03/27/2016 2:00 PM


Greenport Village Mayor George Hubbard Jr. accepted an award from Tall Ships America declaring Greenport as the ‘Port of the Year’ for 2015 at the Village Board’s meeting Thursday night, saying the award was won by all Greenporters who worked together to make the event a success last summer. READ

04/27/15 11:32am
04/27/2015 11:32 AM
KATHARINE SCHROEDER FILE PHOTO | A long line to board one of the ships at this year's Tall Ships of America event.

KATHARINE SCHROEDER FILE PHOTO | Visitors wait to board one of the ships at the Tall Ships of America event in Greenport three years ago.

The Greenport Business Improvement District has raised nearly three quarters of its “ambitious” $100,000 sponsorship goal for the village’s Tall Ships event coming this July, a village board report shows.

According to the Tall Ships overview report posted to the village website, the BID has secured $73,500 in sponsorship deals as of Friday.

The report doesn’t list specifically which businesses had provided the sponsorships. (more…)

11/14/14 8:00am
11/14/2014 8:00 AM
TK TK (Credit: Hermione Voyage's Facebook page)

The Hermione is scheduled to visit Greenport on July 6. (Credit: Hermione Voyage’s Facebook page)

The Hermione, a handmade replica of French general Marquis de Lafayette’s 18th century frigate, is expected to draw international attention at this summer’s Tall Ships event as it sails its maiden voyage from France to the United States.

And one of ship’s stops this Fourth of July weekend is Greenport.


11/25/12 7:15am
11/25/2012 7:15 AM

KATHARINE SCHROEDER PHOTO | Greenport Business Improvement District members (from left) Rita Hagerman, Linda Kessler, Pat Mundus and Peter Clarke. Ms. Hagerman is a founding member, Ms. Kessler and Ms. Mundus are new members, and Peter Clarke is a member and President of the BID.

Two new members were elected to the Greenport Business Improvement District’s board last Friday during the group’s annual election, held downtown at Claudio’s Restaurant.

Linda Kessler, owner of the vintage and antique shop Kessie, and Pat Mundus, who rents space at Hanff’s Boat Yard for her business, East End Charters, were elected to the 11-member board.

BID members Peter Clarke and Rita Hagerman were also re-elected last Friday to serve another term. Mr. Clarke is the owner of Clarke’s Garden on Main Street and has served as BID president since January. Printmaker Ms. Hagerman has served on the BID board since 1994 and is a village property owner.

The BID’s board consists of three appointees and eight elected members. Each seat carries a two-year term.

The elected members of the BID are voted on by anyone who owns property, operates a business or resides within the district. The three appointees include one chosen by the mayor, one chosen by the Village Board and one chosen by the village treasurer. In April, Greenport Village Mayor David Nyce appointed Greenport Harbor Brewing Company co-founder Richard Vandenburgh and the Village Board appointed Mr. Nyce. The BID is currently looking to fill the village treasurer’s appointed seat, formerly held by Leueen Miller.

Half of the elected board members must own property within the district and the other four elected members must be tenants. This make-up is a fixed proportion.

Ms. Kessler will serve on the BID board as a property owner and Ms. Mundus will serve as a tenant.

Mr. Clarke said he believes Ms. Kessler’s years of experience as a downtown business owner will help the BID plan future events.

“I think she has an active interest in helping us organize to create more events that will contribute to the economic vitality of the business improvement district,” he said.

Ms. Mundus, sailor and daughter of well-known shark fisherman Frank Mundus of Montauk, was appointed to serve on the village Planning Board earlier this year. She also sits on the board of directors of the Brecknock Hall Foundation and was a Greenport Maritime Festival organizer.

“One of our objectives is to increase our work on the maritime, boating and water aspects of our village and I think Pat will really help us with that,” Mr. Clarke said.

In addition to electing its board, the BID also approved its 2014 spending plan at Friday’s meeting. The BID’s current fiscal year began July 1 and ends June 30, 2013.

Mr. Clarke said the BID’s future goals includes launching a marketing plan, increasing support for village events and improving signage to the district’s boundaries and municipal parking areas.

He said 20 percent of the organization’s $45,000 budget will be allocated for a marketing/social media/public relations program.

“We had a good summer season and we are filled with ideas to continue to unite the district and make Greenport a great place to do business for both residents and visitors,” Mr. Clarke said.

The BID board is expected to elect its officers — president, vice president, treasurer and secretary — during its regular meeting in January.

For more information about the Greenport BID, visit www.greenportvillage.com.

[email protected]

11/16/12 12:49pm
11/16/2012 12:49 PM

FACEBOOK IMAGE | The Greenport BID will hold its annual meeting tonight at 5:30 p.m.

The Greenport Business Improvement District will hold its annual meeting at Claudio’s Restaurant in Greenport tonight at 5:30 p.m.

There will be a presentation on the proposed budget for the next fiscal year and the election of four members.

Last year, the BID elected Peter Clarke of Clarke’s Garden as its new president. He succeeded Mike Acebo of Brewer’s Yacht Yard, who had led the BID since its inception in 1994.

Read more about tonight’s meeting in the Nov. 22 issue of The Suffolk Times in both our print and electronic editions.

[email protected]

11/30/11 5:00pm
11/30/2011 5:00 PM

KATHARINE SCHROEDER FILE PHOTO | Peter Clarke, owner of Clarke's Garden on Main Street, will become president of the Greenport BID in January.

Although Peter Clarke is a fresh face in Greenport Village, the garden and home store owner says he’s ready to tackle local business concerns as the Greenport Business Improvement District’s new president.

Mr. Clarke, who moved to Greenport and opened Clarke’s Garden on Main Street in 2010, was recently tapped to succeed BID president Mike Acebo. Mr. Acebo has led the BID since its inception in 1994. The official vote confirming his succession will take place in January.

Mr. Clarke, a lifelong retailer originally from New York City, said BID members first asked him last year to become their next president because Mr. Acebo planned to step down after serving nearly two decades.

“I didn’t feel I was ready for it,” Mr. Clarke said. “I wanted a better understanding of the community and of running my own business here before leading a career group.”

It was then that Mr. Clarke decided to shadow Mr. Acebo as the BID’s vice president in order to prepare for a new leadership role.

We sat down with Mr. Clarke Tuesday at Aldo’s Cafe on Front Street to discuss his vision for the BID. The following is excerpted from that conversation.

Q: What do you think will help local businesses during the offseason?

A: I believe the January and February months are so weather-dependent that I would not focus a lot of money and effort there. I think we need to develop what I call the “shoulder seasons” for Greenport — a phrase that means not prime, but not dead.  Our focus is going to be to develop the period from Labor Day to Christmas and the spring period from March to May. There is a lot of potential to animate and to further develop activities in Greenport to drive business activity and to engage and entertain our residents and visitors.

Q: What are some events going on during the shoulder season that the BID plans to help with?

A: I think people start to breathe again here sometime between Valentine’s Day and Presidents Day because we have a very important, established, traditional Presidents Day parade here that’s been a fixture in Greenport where people from all over come and participate. That kind of breaks our winter hiatus. We have a unique opportunity this year because we’re participating in Tall Ships of America, which is celebrating the 200th anniversary of the War of 1812. We have a lot to do to get ready for that. The last time we had them here was in 2004 and we had over 50,000 unique visitors.

Q: What are the top concerns local business owners have?

A: The seasonality of the village, vacant stores and community support. Big box stores and the Tanger Outlets have pulled a lot of local dollars into Riverhead. It is very important to our businesses that [the BID] focus on ideas to improve service for our local clientele, as well as our visitors.

Q: What do you think the BID should concentrate on next year?

A: Creating a new level of participation. It’s important for us to create an open, welcoming environment for all members to come forward with their ideas and to make sure we encourage and foster this existing spirit of volunteerism in Greenport. One of the things that I would say is evidence of this new level of participation is that we had about 40 people attend our annual meeting [on Nov. 18]. That was probably the largest attendance many of the long-term members remembered having in many years.

Q: How can the BID help local businesses thrive?

A: The biggest achievement we had this year is the relaunching of our website. Since it was launched in August, we have already surpassed the number of visitors the prior website would receive in a year. The website has been the primary tool to help our local businesses. It includes a business listing directory where BID members can create a micro-website for their business. It’s really about showcasing the members. It’s about them. It’s not about us.

[email protected]

11/23/11 7:00pm
11/23/2011 7:00 PM

KATHARINE SCHROEDER PHOTO | New BID president Peter Clarke in front of his Greenport shop on Monday.

The Greenport Business Improvement District will have its first new leader in 17 years when Peter Clarke takes the helm in January.

At a Friday night meeting, Mr. Clarke, owner of Clarke’s Garden on Main Street, was tapped to succeed Mike Acebo, who has led the BID since its inception in 1994. The official vote confirming his succession will take place in January.

For years, Mr. Acebo has been hoping to step down as BID president, but he said no one else wanted the job. But he said the BID has a renewed energy and it seemed like a good time for new leadership.

Mr. Clarke was instrumental in working with consultant Harold House to create a new BID website at www.greenportvillage.com.

During Friday’s meeting at Claudio’s restaurant, Mr. House gave a presentation on the new site, outlining how it differs from the old one and how traffic to the site has increased.

On Monday nights, Mr. House is available at Floyd Memorial Library beginning at 6 p.m. to teach individual merchants in how to maximize their appearances on the new website.

The new site is “very close to being a model efficiency site” that drives users to links to local businesses, Mr. House told BID members. While the site is about 60 percent developed, he envisions eventually streaming video and placing at least 10 webcams in the downtown harbor area.

“We just can’t do everything at once,” he said. “This will be a dynamo in a couple of years.”

At the same meeting, BID members approved a $50,200 budget for 2012-13 that is just slightly less than its current operating budget of $55,655.

The current spending plan included about $30,000 to support various events in the village events like the holiday festival, dancing in the Mitchell Park, Shakespeare performances in the park by Northeast Stage, new planters throughout downtown and photos in empty store windows to keep them from appearing deserted.

The BID will allocate 23.9 percent of its new budget to support events, 16.7 percent for website management, 13.9 percent for ongoing website development and 11.6 percent for printing costs. Other budget items include advertising and public relations, operating expenses, the 2012 Tall Ships event, district beautification and business development.

[email protected]

11/18/11 9:09pm
11/18/2011 9:09 PM

The Greenport Business Improvement District has its first new leader in 17 years.

At a Friday night meeting, Peter Clarke of Clarke’s Garden succeeded Mike Acebo, who has led the BID since its inception in 1994.

For years, Mr. Acebo has been hoping to step down as BID president, but he said no one else wanted the job. But the BID has a renewed energy and it seemed like a good time for new leadership, Mr. Acebo said.

Mr. Clarke was instrumental  in working with consultant Harold House to create a new BID website at www.greenportvillage.com.