Saltaire Summery

Before Summer Descends: Saltaire in Bloom on a Spring Day. (Photo by Catherine O’Brien)

By Hugh O’Brien

Yep, here we are, summer of ’22 and back at the same old fruit stand, which reminds me, the fruit standing in the Saltaire Market is excellent, and that’s not a plug for a private business, although you can also find plugs in the houseware section, which is not an effort to gin up sales, but yes, you can buy gin at Sun Spirits right next door. It’s okay, Patrick advertises with us and runs the only game in town, so enough stuff about foodstuffs.

It’s that time of the rolling year when we have to pony up for the privilege of living here. Dues, fees, taxes, prepare to pay, pal. (Yikes! More product placement!) The under-new-management Yacht Club is open, and if you’re one of those early birds who shrewdly paid your dues last month in Bitcoin, your membership for the year totals about 28 cents. That’ll help offset those other expenses, with enough left over to buy a baguette, a banana and a bottle of Boodles at the local emporium.

The big news is the retirement of three-term Mayor John Zaccaro Jr. In six years John’s set a pace that would tax anyone (other than the taxpayers), pushing through major undertakings such as changing Lighthouse Prom from cement to wood, Bay Prom’s phone lines from overhead to underground, and the view from Mario Posillico’s office from south to north, while guiding us through assorted crises, from Cove to COVID. A dizzying ride. Truthfully, few mayors have worked harder, more incessantly, than John, and he leaves behind a tangible legacy of achievement that’ll be tough to match.

This being a year ending in a numeral, Village elections will be held this Friday, May 27. Polls are open in the Library from noon to 9 p.m. Three first-rate candidates are vying for two trustee seats – incumbents Alex Chefetz and Frank Wolf, and challenger Susan Skerritt – and this writer is the lone candidate for mayor; there’s also a referendum on shifting election day to August starting next year … all of which emphasizes the need for every eligible voter to cast an informed and productive ballot. As Pal would have testified if only wagging one’s tail could be admitted into evidence, never take anything for granted in Saltaire elections.

And we have a new playground in the offing. The company designing it is called “APE” but nobody knows what those letters stand for; even their own brochure doesn’t say. We thought maybe American Playground Equipment, except they’re a German outfit. Anyway, they’ve devised an excellent layout boasting innovative equipment, though you’d think a company with an acronym like APE could at least have added a reliable set of monkey bars. Funding and building a new playground isn’t something we can let slide, but thanks to the SCA’s leadership and Saltairians’ generosity, there’s little doubt we’ll be able to swing it.