1. What is it about Long Island that is so fascinating to everyone who visits, lives or lived there?
Long Island is more than a geographical location, it is really a mindset. On Long Island, you have everything you could want, and all in one place: beautiful beaches and parks, music, arts and entertainment, proximity to New York City, vineyards, farms, fashion and shopping, sports… Long Island has something for everyone. Whether a person is from, has visited or lived, or lives in Brooklyn, Queens, Nassau or Suffolk, there is an ever-lasting connection for anyone who has experienced Long Island.
2. Why was it important for you to keep the “Hey Long Island... Do U Remember?” Facebook group going?
The “Hey Long Island... Do U Remember?” Facebook group is a wonderful resource allowing people to come together to share thoughts and memories of happier, simpler times. People can reconnect and revisit their childhood. Remembering friends and cherished memories have become increasingly important, especially after facing the pandemic and having restrictions on travel and gatherings with friends and family. And as new generations emerge, history only continues to build on the foundation of the past.
3. The Hey Long Island Facebook community has almost 160,000 followers and is one of the most dynamic and growing sites in New York. Why is this subject so fascinating to so many people?
Long Island means so much to so many people. The history, nostalgia, culture, people and places all create a common bond with anyone who has a connection to Long Island. Group members love to share their own stories and memories and to read those of other Long Islanders. It is that common bond that drives people to our online community. Unlike other historical sites, our community allows people to share their personal thoughts and experiences as part of what Long Island means to them.
4. What surprised you most when you were researching this book?
Although we all were born and raised on Long Island and thought we knew a lot about our birthplace, it was truly amazing to learn more details about individual areas and to explore deeper into Long Island’s incredibly rich history. One of the great aspects of the book Hey Long Island… Do U Remember? is that readers will not only get to reminisce about places they already know but will also get insights into places and history they didn’t know existed.
5. Where did you find the photos in this book? Was there one that particularly stood out to you?
We were fortunate to have a lot of support from our loyal members from the Facebook page “Hey Long Island… Do U Remember?” as well as assistance from a myriad of local historians and historical societies. Photographs and artwork from Long Island photographers, artists, and family photos from our group members were a big part of telling the story of Long Island in our book. From our research and all of the amazing photos we acquired and included in the book, it’s difficult to select just one photo that stands out. However, some of the great photos include Long Island's The Big Duck, the 1964-1965 World’s Fair Unisphere, Nunley's Carousel, and of course, the Montauk Lighthouse which graces the book’s cover.