Toot your horn for the lighthouse

The lighthouse went up last week.

Its former prototype had been three cesspool rings with a beacon on top on the east jetty.

“It’s a neat and needed addition to the Patchogue River,” said mayor Paul Pontieri of the newly constructed guider of boats. It flashes every four seconds.”

Besides the flashing light that shows coordinates on boaters’ GPS, the lighthouse’s front exterior is labeled “Patchogue.” Emblems for the Village of Patchogue and one for Brookhaven Town are on each side.

Bill Hilton, special events coordinator for Patchogue who worked on the project, said the lighthouse was fabricated in the Midwest. The quarry stone from the newly built east jetty was trucked in from Upstate. “They took apart the old jetty because the stone had been compromised in the chinking,” Hilton explained of its formation. “Those smaller stones within the larger ones had deteriorated. We believe it was last worked on in the 1950s.”

Hilton said the pier’s installation with the lighthouse represented Phase 1.

According to town spokesman Jack Krieger, former NYS Sen. Tom Croci obtained $600,000 for the jetty and $50,000 for the lighthouse. The Town of Brookhaven funded $300,000; the town’s Community Development Block Grant funded $120,000 for the fishing pier. The Village of Patchogue’s commitment was $100,000.

Phase II heralds the completion of the jetty, which was completely rebuilt, in about a week before the boating season starts. The handicap fishing pier with its cement walkway and railing will be started after the summer boating season and is expected to be completed before the end of the year, Krieger said.

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