The 'Back to the Future' team — York Fife, Jack Bartolo, Landon Zaleski, Quinn Stromski and Justin Lopresti — won the Ghoulies Division and took home a $150 prize. Photo: Denise Civiletti

The return of the Coffin Races drew a big crowd to Griffing Avenue for the kickoff of Halloween Fest ’21 this afternoon. The crowd lined both sides of the street, with “stadium seating” on the steps of the Supreme Court Building.

Six teams competed in today’s races, three in the Ghoulies Division (ages 5-12) and three in the Zombies Division (ages 12 and up.) There were multiple heats.

“Back to the Future” took first place in the Ghoulies Division, racing in the “reincarnated” Beetle Juice coffin, a winner in years past, repurposed as a custom, DeLorean Time Machine. They took home a $150 prize. The Back to the Future crew: York Fife, Jack Bartolo, Landon Zaleski, Quinn Stromski and Justin Lopresti.

“Mike’s Monsters” won the Zombies Division, defeating the Privet Pirates and Whalers Ghouls. The Monsters — Ryan Zaleski, Alley Turbush, Brandon Turbush, Roger Turbush and Mark Stewart — won a $250 prize.

The Riverhead BID, which sponsors the event, supplied the prize money.

DJ Mark MK emceed.

RiverheadLOCAL photos and video by Denise Civiletti

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Denise is a veteran local reporter, editor, attorney and former Riverhead Town councilwoman. Her work has been recognized with numerous awards, including investigative reporting and writer of the year awards from the N.Y. Press Association. She is a founder, owner and co-publisher of this website.Email Denise.