Help for Sag Harbor Families Struggling to Heat Their Homes

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Tutto il Giorno on Main Street. Christine Sampson photo

Born out of a conversation between Sag Harbor Elementary School principal Matt Malone and the entrepreneurs behind The SHED Workspace, help is on the way for local families who are having trouble paying for heating oil this winter.

The SHED is partnering with Tutto il Giorno and Urban Zen on Thursday, February 7, from 6 to 9 p.m. for a fundraising dinner for a new initiative called “Keep Sag Harbor Warm.” Proceeds from the dinner, which has been dubbed “Festa al Camino,” will go to the Sag Harbor Food Pantry, which will manage the donations. A portion of Urban Zen sales will also be donated.

According to Liza Tremblay, Sarah Cohen and Amanda Millner Fairbanks, who last year launched The SHED Workspace, a coworking space for women based at Estia’s Little Kitchen, about 75 local families rely on the Sag Harbor Food Pantry for nutrition assistance and also find themselves struggling to heat their houses.

“Even in an area of tremendous affluence such as ours, there are many families, many of whom are seasonal workers, who struggle to afford the basic necessities — particularly this time of year,” the three entrepreneurs said in a joint statement. “Once winter comes, many of these same families have difficulty affording the cost of heating oil. Money shouldn’t be an impediment to keeping warm, particularly in a resource-rich area such as ours.”

Heating oil can cost around $400 for 100 gallons, which typically lasts a household four to six weeks, depending on a family’s usage.

“Festa al Camino,” an Italian phrase that translates to “Feast by the Fireplace,” will be a three-course family-style dinner with wine. Tickets are $75 to $150 and can be purchased online at eventbrite.com/e/festa-al-camino-a-dinner-benefitting-keep-sag-harbor-warm-tickets-55294484291.

The three founders of The SHED credited Gabby Karan De Felice, who owns the restaurant and store, with helping the effort come together.

“The Keep Sag Harbor Warm initiative is reflective of both Gabby’s and The SHED’s shared values — coming together to do good,” Ms. Tremblay, Ms. Cohen and Ms. Fairbanks said.

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