BBP Heritage Association
~ November 2023 Newsletter ~
General Membership Meeting
Rum Running on Long Island
Presented by Amy Folk
Author, Southhold Town Historian
November 19, 2023
2-4pm @ BBP Library
Prohibition and rum running impacted the entire nation during the early 20th century. With its proximity to New York City, smugglers brought cases of liquor from offshore and through coastal communities in Suffolk County. Violence from criminal outfits disrupted previously quiet towns and locals were often swept up in dangerous, unintentional activities with bootleggers. Join author and Southold Town Historian Amy Folk and listen to the stories of rum running in Suffolk County.
Digital Tapestry Augmented Reality Experience
Introducing a NEW experience now offered at Meadow Croft!
Thank you to Linda Leuzzi from the Long Island Advance for the coverage of this unique experience! Check out the article here.
The Meadow Croft Estate, managed by the Bayport-Blue Point Heritage Association, introduces an Augmented Reality (AR) tour starting in the Fall of 2023. This unique experience is accessible via the TRAR™ app on both Android and Apple devices. The app is free and allows visitors to engage with 3D AR models of the Roosevelt family, including former President Theodore Roosevelt.
This technology was developed by 360XR™, a startup company specializing in historical AR and Virtual Reality (VR). Amazingly, this technology makes history tangible. Visitors use the app to interact with 3D versions of the Roosevelts, who guide them through the Estates landmarks. There are five main scenes, with each stationed at specific spots on the grounds of Meadow Croft, marked for easy identification.
At the beginning, John Ellis Roosevelt welcomes visitors, recounting the times his cousin, President Theodore Roosevelt visited Meadow Croft. The AR figures of Teddy, John, and Nannie Roosevelt, positioned as they would have been over a century ago, narrate tales of their experiences within the very estate visitors now explore. Teddy Roosevelt delves into the history and architecture of Meadow Croft, and his voice, carefully modeled after renowned impersonator Joe Wiegand, adds authenticity.
The AR tour takes guests through various stops: Teddy discussing his affinity for Meadow Croft, John reminiscing about his father, Robert Barnwell Roosevelt, their adventures, and finally, Nannie detailing Teddy's local excursions using the family’s car, leading to tales of the Roosevelts participation in motor car races.
The Bayport Blue Point Heritage Association and the Meadow Croft Estate express enthusiasm about their partnership with the TRAR™ project. Mary Bailey, President of the BBPHA, emphasized the advantage of collaboration between different Roosevelt sites via the Digital Tapestry platform. This venture is funded by the Robert David Lion Gardiner Foundation and seeks to enhance engagement at Long Islands historical venues. The Digital Tapestry™ initiative features over 60 AR experiences across 11 Long Island locations, each providing a unique insight into significant events and encouraging visitors to explore further.
To immerse yourself in the TRAR™ experience at Meadow Croft Estate, download the app from your device’s store, visit the grounds, and let the Roosevelts guide you through history.
I’d like to say thank you to everyone involved on this TRAR Augmented Reality project. We all worked so well together and it was such an amazing experience.
Thank you Kathy Curren, Director of the Robert David Lioin Gardiner Foundation for considering Meadow Croft for this project and giving us the wonderful opportunity to work together to share the iconic story of Teddy Roosevelt’s visit to Meadow Croft.
Also a huge thank you to the 360XR AR design team for all your hard work and dedication to the project. And especially thank you to Jack Stevenson from 360XR for everything you did and continue to do. You took time away from your family to be there for us every step of the way. You went and continue to go above and beyond. Thank you.
I cannot forget to thank my team; Mary Lou Cohalan, Frank Giebfried and Richard Martin. We spent nearly a year working together writing scripts, choosing voice actors and finalizing the digital images. Thanks Richard Martin, Director of Historic Services for Suffolk County Parks, for doing the homework and keeping us on track. This was an amazing experience and I couldn’t have asked for a better group to work with.
Mary Bailey, President
Bayport Blue Point Heritage Association
Long Island Harvard Alumni Visit Meadow Croft
On October 1, 2023, the BBPHA gave a private tour to the LI Harvard Alumni Club of Long Island. The 17 guests were met by BBPHA docents who gave them a tour and walked the grounds. Melissa Struck, who serves on the Harvard Club of Long Island's Board of Directors shared, "We loved our tour of Meadow Croft. It is a Long Island gem! We are grateful to our docents, Leanne, Jerry, Beth and Frank for sharing their extensive knowledge with us and giving so generously of their time. They really brought John Ellis Roosevelt and his family to life. It was also very interesting to learn about the Bayport Blue-Point Heritage Association's extraordinary restoration efforts over the last few decades."
If you have a group who would like a private tour, please reach out to us. We love to show off our community's history!
Pollinator Garden at Meadow Croft
It was a beautiful fall day on October 10th, when members of the Long Island Conservancy, along with support from Suffolk County Parks Department, planted a pollinator garden at Meadow Croft. The work that The Long Island Conservancy performs is project-based. Drawing from their extensive expertise in habitat restoration, they work with local communities to identify places where they can for instance turn a sump into a bird sanctuary, or clear out acres of porcelainberry, wisteria, mugwort, oriental bittersweet, Japanese multiflora rose and English Ivy, and return to those places the flowers, grasses, shrubs and trees that are native to that place.
Meadow Croft was a perfect place to plant a pollinator garden! Many native species were planted to entice creatures to help pollinate at our estate. There were over 50 native flowers and plants embedded into a small patch of garden. Thank you to all the volunteers who showed up to help with this project. We can't wait for the spring!
🎅 Christmas at Meadow Croft 🎅
It's almost time for our Annual Christmas at Meadow Croft! This year's event will be held on Saturday & Sunday, December 2nd & 3rd, 2023. There will be special exhibits, electric trains, dolls, wood carvings, and of course St. Nicholas will be there. Hot cocoa and family pictures with St. Nicholas will be in the Carriage House. The Roosevelt piano will be filling the air with holiday music and the festive decorations and baskets will be raffled off. The theme for this year will be;
Jolly Ole St. Nick!
Christmas Aglow: Back by popular demand, 2 special preview nights on Friday & Saturday, December 1st & 2nd from 7:00-9:00 PM. A special guided tour of the full estate in all it's Christmas glory as well as refreshments served. This preview is for adults only and is $25.00 per person. These tickets are not interchangeable so when purchasing tickets on our website, please specify what night you would like to attend. We have sold out quickly the last two years so don't wait! Tickets are limited to 50 people per night and can be purchased on our website here .
Volunteers needed: We are in need of some parking attendants to help with the traffic on both Saturday and Sunday. If you have some time to spare and would like to help, please call Craig Clare at 631-921-5245.
Get in the holiday spirit!
Gifts available for purchase!
Gift Baskets & decorations to be raffled off!
Save the dates! December 2nd & 3rd from 12:00-4:00.
Admission: $10.00 per person
Boy Scout Troop 130
Special thanks go out to Boy Scout Troop 130 for recently helping to bring down all of the many Christmas decorations and Christmas trees down from the attic at Meadow Croft. This is usually a job that takes all day but with the help and support of this local troop, it was done in no time at all! We appreciate all of your help and muscles!
Thank You Docents!
A very special Thank You goes out to the many men and women who volunteer their time to share the rich history of John Ellis Roosevelt, his family and the grandeur of the Meadow Croft estate. Every weekend, from June through October, the estate is staffed to give guided tours, share facts and answer any questions our guests may have. Rain or shine we are staffed and ready to go. Special Thank you goes to Jen Economos who organized the docents and Jerry McCluskey who is our special, welcoming greeter to all! Thank you to: Dave Ort, Denise Coscia, Erich Haesche, Beth LaMarca, Frank Giefried, Joe Novak, Leanne Berg, Mary Lou Cohalan, Sandra Iden and Lenore Ringer Prezioso.
Bayport Blue Point Chamber of Commerce
This past week we had the pleasure of hosting the Bayport Blue Point Chamber of Commerce for their October general meeting on the front porch at Meadow Croft. Legislator Anthony Piccirillo and Councilman John Lorenzo were there to answer everyones questions and fill us in on what’s going on in our communities.
We gave tours of Meadow Croft to the group in attendance and introduced them to the Theodore Roosevelt Augmented Reality project just launched on the property at Meadow Croft. Then we enjoyed hot cider made by the Chamber’s VP, Gina Geraci.
Thank you all for coming!
"Along the Shore...Blue Point, L.I."
These articles first appeared in the Bayport Blue Point Gazette. They were written by Gene Horton and reprinted here with permission.
This old postcard view shows Blue Point Beach, which was immediately west of Blue Point Avenue dock, as it appeared in 1913. Those old cars, all lined up, look like Daytona Beach! Many summer visitors flocked to Long Island's south shore communities such as Blue Point between the 1900's and the 1930's. People from the City spent July and August here in our summer boardinghouses & hotels to enjoy the cool summer breezes and the sparkling waters of the Great South Bay.