Did you know that the Red Cross declared there is a national blood crisis in the United States? Blood is the gift of life and the Flanders, Riverhead, Northampton Community Association and the Flanders Fire Department are hosting in a blood drive on Sunday, January 30 from 11 am to 5 pm at the Flanders Men’s Club, 1018 Flanders Road in Flanders. Appointments preferred and you can schedule an appointment by calling 1-800-933-2566 or call Barbara Swislosky at 631-574-8958 or Patty Hopkins at 631- 727-3977 if you have questions. If you can set a time to donate it would be most appreciative. These are critical times and your help is needed.

The First Baptist Church of Riverhead and the Rev.Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Breakfast Committee cordially invites you to their 37th Annual Celebration “Reflections from the Beloved Community” on Monday, January 17 at 10 am. Check out facebook:@firstbaptistriverhead and You Tube http://5lx.us/fbc. Enjoy watching the community’s reflection on Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. life and legacy during this 37th annual celebration. The Butterfly Effect Project butterflies will be making an appearance sharing their thoughts, experiences and visions for the future.

A new historic photography exhibit in the Gish Gallery at the Suffolk County Historical Museum, 300 W. Main Street in Riverhead is titled: “Beyond the Gates: Long Island’s Grand Estates of Yesteryear.” The opening reception is Saturday, January 29, from 1 pm to 3 pm and light refreshments will be served. From the Gilded Age to the Great Gatsby’s 1920s recognizable names like the Vanderbilts, Roosevelts, Havemeyers and Woolworths enjoyed their countryside vacation estates built across Long Island. These estates are so appreciated today for their architectural beauty and grandeur: high ceilings, cavernous hallways, unparalleled woodworking and exquisite gardens. Enjoy the aerial photographs of the 1930s which provide glimpses “beyond the gates.” This exhibit will run January 29 through June 28 and it’s one you and your family will be awed by. For more information you can call 631-727-2881 ext. 100. Become a member and support this museum, whose mission is to collect, preserve and interpret the history of Suffolk County. Individuals memberships are $35 a year while family memberships are $40. Check it out and enjoy a year of wonderful programs for all ages.

The Southampton Youth Bureau is currently accepting new member registrations for their “Teen Views on the News (TV-ON) program. Participants will learn how to conduct interviews and create stories for local TV. Programs resume February 2 and air on Wednesdays from 6:30 pm to 8 pm at the Hampton Bays Community Center, 25 Ponquogue Avenue. TV-ON is open to grades 7 though 12 and community service credits are available. Pre-registration is required. For more information please call 631-702-2425 or visit www.southamptontownny.gov/YB to register online.

The Riverhead Recreation Department is on a mission for seniors to receive Valentine Day cards. Beginning on Monday, January 31 through Wednesday, February 9 why not write a valentine card, have your children draw pictures of valentines and drop them off to Valentine Cards, 60 Shade Tree Lane Monday through Friday 8 am to 4 pm in the special drop box and you will be happy to know that our local senior citizens will be receiving them to brighten their day? So many cards were received last year for the seniors so why not this year spread some more kindness again. For more information you can call Liz at 631-727-4200 extension 740 or email [email protected] with any questions.

Happy Birthday wishes to Logan Kurpetski and Ariana Mielnicki on January 16; Tristan Krajewski and Lolly McKay on January 17; Scott Kubacki and Kaden Linnen on January 18; Fran Friszolowski, Becky Hubbard, Marissa Kess, Sarah Paulos and Adam Bugdin on January 19; Tim Griffing Jr. on January 20; Bryan Krajewski, Sean Rachubka and Louise Meyer on January 21; Patricia Gadzinski, and Sebastian Hulse on January 22; Michael Young and Andrew Pekar on January 23; Amy Wooten Guecha and Adelaide Skop on January 25; Les Grefe, Mike Zaleski and Justin Harris on January 26; Chrissie Reichel, Tim Lessard and Pam Carey on January 27; Marvin Warner on January 28; Jette Grefe and Seth Bishop on January 29; Ariel Reichel and Ashley Hulse Beeker on January 31; Seth Fruedenberg on February 1; Milli Smith on February 2; Billy Hartmann on February 3; Tom Troyan, Jude Petrowski and Bob Szczepanik on February 4; Melvin Henderson, Jr. and Sidney Kito on February 5.

We say goodbye to Emma Waskiewicz of Riverhead who passed away this week at age 101. Emma lived a good life, born on May 14, 1920 in Peconic. She lived with her husband Frank on Raynor Avenue and for the last 20 plus years at Glenwood Village in her home not far from her sister Louise, who is 98 years old. Until she took a recent fall, which sent her to a rehab unit, she was out and about enjoying her sister, her nieces and nephews, and going out to, to socialize. She had so many stories about the last 100 plus years. Her niece Sandy Reed was like an adopted daughter, enjoying the many good times being together. Needless to say, her family will miss her so much as well as her dear sister Louise. What a duo the two of them were for sure.

Be sure to display your flag tomorrow, January 17, in honor of the life and legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

Got news to share? Send it to Kathy by email to [email protected], write to her at 124 Kings Drive, Riverhead NY 11901 or call her at 631-727-6148. “Around Town” will appear on RiverheadLOCAL on the first and third Sunday of the month.

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Kathy Berezny is active in the Riverhead community, where she has lived for 46 years. She is chaplain of the Riverhead Fire Department Ladies Auxiliary, which she joined in February 1979. She is a longtime member and past president of the Riverhead Board of Education. Email Kathy: [email protected]