As Hurricane Maria arcs into the Atlantic Ocean and away from the U.S. coastline, the East End has apparently dodged another bullet in what has been an intense hurricane season that has brought devastation to the Caribbean, Florida and Texas. While peak hurricane activity historically occurs in the beginning of September, the Atlantic hurricane season does not end until November 30, and each year we wait and wonder when the South Fork will be hit by a major storm.
While our region has so far been spared, others have been almost completely destroyed with millions left without water, power and shelter. Places like Barbuda, Anguilla, St. Maarten and Puerto Rico are looking at a rebuilding process that will take years. We have an incredible volunteer force locally, including organizations like East End Cares and the Animal Rescue Fund of the Hamptons, who have sent resources to Texas to aid victims of Hurricane Harvey and to Florida to help those hit by Hurricane Irma. But with an estimated $200 billion in damages from the four major hurricanes that have churned out of the Atlantic this year, every bit of financial support we can offer these communities will help.
On Sunday, October 1, at 4 p.m., Bay Street Theater in Sag Harbor will host a hurricane relief benefit concert emceed by Southampton Town Supervisor Jay Schneiderman, and featuring local musicians Joe Lauro and the Hoodoo Loungers and Gene Casey and the Lone Sharks. East End Cares will host a second benefit on October 15 from 5 to 8 p.m. at Sole East in Montauk. Both fundraisers offer a wonderful opportunity to bring the community together, and rally around a critical cause.