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Shelter Island Reporter editorials: April 18, 2024

A Note From the Publisher

The mission of Times Review Media Group is to provide the very best in community journalism. Beginning May 23, we will be asking more of our readers to help support this mission.

Our industry continues to be disrupted by media giants like Google and Meta, owner of Instagram and Facebook. Simultaneously, demographics on the North Fork and Shelter Island continue to shift at an incredibly rapid rate. Second-home buyers are displacing longtime residents and making our communities even more seasonally driven.

This is leading to steep declines in area school enrollments, volunteers in our local fire departments and rescue squads and year-round customers for local businesses. The workforce housing crisis is also making it much more difficult to hire and retain talented staff.

We take great pride in our ability to adapt our business by embracing these changes and expanding the distribution of our award-winning content to include digital, social media, print and live events like the “Future of Greenport” panel discussion in March at the Greenport American Legion.

Driven by unrelenting cost increases and our desire to continue to invest in our journalism, we must ask our readers to pay more to support our mission. Effective May 23, our annual print subscription rate, which includes complete digital access, will be $98. The cost of an annual digital subscription will be $64, and recurring monthly digital subscriptions will cost $7.50. Our last subscription increase was more than five years ago, in 2019.

If you have questions or need assistance with subscription-related issues, please contact circulation manager Keysha Terry at 631-354-8014 or [email protected]. Additional questions can be directed to publisher Andrew Olsen at 631-354-8031 or [email protected].

We appreciate the commitment you, our readers, have made to us. Our talented staff will continue to strive to produce top-quality content that we hope makes a positive difference in your lives and in our shared community.

Rites of Spring

We were treated to a back-to-back Rites of Shelter Island Spring last weekend, when the community celebrated the annual school musical and the roadside cleanup.

Spring for Shelter Island means many happy things, and one of its joys is the Shelter Island School play, an enduring and inspirational sign of the season. The production by the Shelter Island School Drama Club is more than a night out to be part of laughter, song and dance — and it’s that in spades — but it’s an event that brings the community together to celebrate life, youth and the arts.

It’s also a time for young people on a small island, along with dedicated adults, to spend free time coming together to work on a project from beginning to end.

This beloved annual community event was once again a smashing success, with the production of the musical “Miracle in the Park” playing to full houses. The play sparked conversations in offices, shops and at the post offices about the brilliantly produced and acted production.

Congratulations to the students who participated with verve and talent, and to all those behind the scenes. But special congratulations and thanks go out from us here at the Reporter to the driving forces of the play, John and Anu Kaasik. It was John’s play, literally, which he wrote and directed.

The Kaasiks gave their young cast and crew guidance and a sense of accomplishment.

John and Anu are invaluable members of our community. They haven’t forgotten that young people need more than a basic curriculum to learn how to live. They have given them an experience, a lesson learned, that will remain in their memories and hearts for the rest of their lives.

Another rite of spring took place on Saturday. Sponsored by the Lions Club and the first responder departments of the Island, more than 150 volunteers set out to give the Island’s roadways a good spring cleaning.

They collected 1,600 pounds of trash (yes, really) to make the Island shine. Kudos to Stars Café for keeping the coffee coming, and to the Fire Department for providing a barbecue. Special thanks goes to the Lions, who constantly put into action their motto, “We Serve.”

The place Islanders call home is the better for the Lions’ service, and the Club deserves everyone’s gratitude.