The heat and humidity didn't keep locals away from the annual Mamaroneck Harbor Fest. Scores turned out to walk the length of Mamaroneck Avenue in the village and down to Harbor Island, listening to live music, browsing the booths, chatting with friends and neighbors, and enjoying some good food along the way.
While there were a variety of vendors, community service organizations and commercial exhibitors showing at the fair, there were some themes running throughout, like health and wellness.
At Harbor Healing and Wellcare's booth, Dr. Scott Simerman was on hand to offer free posture checks. Right next door, One 2 One Bodyscapes' certified trainers Michael Reitano, Mike McQuillan and owner/manager Sean Fitzpatrick were promoting their programs, which range from nutrition counseling, strength conditioning and weight loss to yoga, post-rehabilitation exercises and sports-specific programming. They were offering a prize drawing for three free personal training sessions
"Unlike a gym, there is no membership fee," explained McQuillan. "You work exclusively with a trainer who can customize your program to suit your needs -- no two people get the same routine."
Further along, Larchmont Wellness was drawing people in for a free scan to test the function of your nervous system. Other health and wellness vendors featured at the Harbor Fest included Yoga Sanctuary, Overeater's Anonymous and the Community Counseling Center.
At Home on the Sound, a non-profit organization, is in need of volunteers to help with their efforts to support local residents who require assistance as they grow older. According to board members Ellie Fredston and Emily Grotta, the grassroots program will provide transportation, home-chore and social, educational and wellness programs for seniors, as well as phone check-ins and patient advocacy services, for the aging population that wants to continue to live independently in our community.
Local attorney and Lions Club first vice president Joe Vozza manned their booth, selling raffle tickets to raise money for the organization.
"We provide charity for the seeing impaired, raising money for glasses and guide dogs," Vozza explained. In addition, Lions created SightFirst, a prevention program to eliminate preventable and reversible blindness, and has sponsored thousands of corneal transplants.
Not to be overlooked were those supporting our four-legged friends. The New Rochelle Humane Society was promoting its Family Volunteer program. Peaches, a young border collie mix, was there looking to get adopted. Nearby, at the Greyhound Rescue & Rehabilitation booth, a retired racing greyhound named Tracy was also in need of a home.
Arts and crafts booths, especially jewelry exhibitors, were plentiful throughout the fest. Verona Black featured necklaces and earrings made from vintage bottle caps. ICE Fine Fashion Jewelry owner Randi Walden said she takes twice-weekly jaunts to the city to stay on top of trends and find jewelry she can sell "for $20 to $30 less than the department stores."
Piero Manrique, a local artist, says he loves painting so much, it inspired him to launch a new business called Vision into Reality. His paintings are now available on t-shirts, providing walking art.
Of course, no street fair would be complete without good street food. Local restaurants, like Le Provencal, Enzo's, Ginban, Haiku, Rani Mahal, Lupita's Deli, Applebees and Pizza Gourmet took booths or were selling food curbside in front of their eateries.
Far from home was the Florida, NY-based Chumleys BBQ and Catering Co. They provided samples of pulled pork, tailgate steak, boneless "ribz" and chicken. Proprietors Jason Gaer and Chef Dan Lemire – aka Chumley – aware of Mamaroneck's evolution as a dining destination, are considering opening a barbecue restaurant in the area. For fellow barbecue lovers like my family, what a welcome addition that would be.