By Ezra Powers
The weather forecast appeared frightful ahead of the Long Island Maritime Museum's Halloween celebration, with a wicked autumn storm barreling toward Long Island’s south shore. Facing sustained 18mph easterly winds off the Great South Bay, crowds nonetheless braved the elements to gather on the museum's great lawn and wait for the torch to be lit.
Despite concerns, the rain held off the evening of Friday, October 29th just long enough to host the highly anticipated tradition. Billed as the 31st “almost” annual Halloween Boat Burning, owing to skipping last year amidst the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the otherwise yearly fundraiser includes live music, food, raffles, and of course the burning of a large wooden sailboat past its prime. In keeping with tradition, every boat burned since 1990 was donated to the museum after being deemed unseaworthy.
This year's sacrificial vessel Got It Easy, 1966 29-foot Pacemaker, was provided by the Weeks family of the Frank M. Weeks Yacht Yard. Before being set ablaze Got It Easy is thoroughly inspected by the diligent members of the West Sayville Fire Department for any hazardous materials. Several dozen West Sayville volunteer firefighters stay on to control the flames, graciously ensuring the beloved tradition continues to be a safe and fun spectacle for all.
Scroll through our gallery below for all
of the Sayville Gazette's scenes from this years Boat Burning
Photography by Daniel Palumbo