Featured Story

Bringing Christmas to Shelter Island’s Chase Creek for 40 years

At 2 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 4, Rich Surozenski, Bill Cummings and Bill’s dog Jesse climbed into an aluminum rowboat and rowed to the middle of Chase Creek towing a fully decorated Christmas tree.

The six-foot tree, mounted on a floating platform, looked a little precarious, especially when Jesse leaned over the gunwales to get a whiff, but the spirit of Christmas was with them.

The tree is now secured in the Creek and the glow begins Saturday, Dec. 9, around 5 p.m, when Jack Kiffer, who ran The Dory and was a long-time supporter, will light the tree.

This is the 40th floating of the Chase Creek tree. The branches are decorated with 125 lights, each attached by Rich with a zip-tie to withstand the weather. Purchase of the tree was supported by the merchants of Bridge Street.

Sharon Surozenski was on shore to congratulate her husband with a bear hug. Rich said he’s been doing this for so many years just because everyone loves the tree.

“We like everybody on Shelter Island to enjoy it,” he said. “I probably enjoy it more than anyone else.”

More photos below by Adam Bundy.

Ready to roll.
Bill and Rich, decorating the tree.
Sharon joined the crew before the passage to the middle of the creek.
Steady as she goes.
Setting up the 40th Chase Creek Christmas tree, with Jesse overseeing Rich and Bill.
Take a bow, boys, for a job well done. The Island thanks you.