Rose’s View – Cherry Grove & Fire Island Pines

Seth Sikes and Nicolas King at the Ice Palace

We celebrate the glorified past and years of ongoing historical heritage on Fire Island as the Arts Project of Cherry Grove marks its 75th anniversary, Fire Island Pines 70 years since its founding, Fire Island Pines Arts Project (FIPAP) 42 years, and 50 years of Lambda in the Pines. Hugh O’Brien, now mayor of Saltaire Village, has been a FIN columnist for 49 years – and myself 50 years. Happy Birthday to Mike Fisher, Michael Moran, Matthew George, and Patrick Lehman.

The Grovette/Copettes Volleyball Games were held on Aug. 2. It was a tense nail biter tournament – all the games were close, but the Copettes won 23/21. Suffolk County Emerald Society Marching Band adorned in their kilts added some color to the day and Queen Porsche opened the game singing the “Star-Spangled Banner.” Doreen Rollo was referee, Sue Panzer captain of Grovettes, was a fierce opponent to the Copettes and did her team proud. Mark Atten – one of the original 1984 team members, threw the ball that opened the games. Crowds arrived from the mainland to cheer everyone on and it was a good day. Everyone was invited to the Ice Palace for pizza after the game.

Todd Sears, David Aldea, and Paddy Pilkington hosted the 50th Anniversary of Lambda Legal Defense in the Pines brunch and pool party.  The organization has been a steadfast advocate for protecting the legal rights of the LGBTQ+ community for half a century now. This is an important achievement worthy of celebrating. 

Enjoyed a great meal at Cherry Grove Pizza not too long ago with friends.  I understand there is a dining review of it in this current edition of Fire Island News, please make a point of reading it. Don’t forget that Thursday nights are Open Mic Nights with Dan Daly on the piano. Great fun and good food.

BAEWATCH  at “Reflections” in Fire Island Pines, staring Natalie Joy Johnson, was a tremendous success on the weekend of Aug. 6, with special guests Julie James and Rose Levine, and Ben Houghton on the piano. 

Jack Bartholet’s one-man show “Buyer & Cellar,” an award-winning comedy by Jonathan Tolins, was a big hit at the Arts Project of Cherry Grove on the weekend of Aug. 4, as was Matt Baney’s “75 And Counting,” also presented by Arts Project on Aug. 18, at the Community House, with familiar Cherry Grove entertainers. 

Other shows that the community enjoyed was Rainbow Connection, a culmination from weeks of intensive theatre arts camp training for LGBTQ+ youth. Read more about it on page __ of this issue.

Seth Sikes and Nicolas King were a sensation performing at the Ice Palace on Aug. 10. “Rose Levine Plays the Palace” accompanied by Mark Hartman to benefit CGCAI will be coming up on Aug. 28. Tickets for Ice Palace events available at

Also consider upcoming performances “Through The Years,” a musical revue at the Community House with surprise Cherry Grove guests on Sept. 3, as well as FIPAP presenting the musical “Urinetown,” at Whyte Hall, Sept. 2 and 3, featuring an all-star Fire Island Pines cast.