Since it was first created 14 years ago, the Facebook group “Hey Long Island Do U Remember?” has grown to 160,000 strong. The group was created and is run by Stacy Mandel Kaplan, Kimberly Towers, Scott J. Mandel and Jordan Kaplan. Recently, the quartet worked together to write a book that tells stories of Long Island’s history.
Mandel Kaplan said that the Facebook group began as a way to connect and share memories with friends, and that if you had told her when they began how big it would grow, she would not have believed you.
The image-driven book tells a story on each page that is interesting and informative. The group worked on the book during the pandemic, with Mandel Kaplan saying it took them about eight months to compile the photos and stories they wanted to feature.
One of her personal favorites is the page on Bald Hill in Farmingville.
“I like the story that it tells,” Mandel Kaplan said. “We tell the story of Bald Hill as it is now and we go back to what it was before.”
The book includes an exclusive story about the American flag design painted at the top of the Bald Hill Vietnam Veterans Memorial and the man who went up on the crane to apply the design.
As an Oceanside resident, Mandel Kaplan said she is also fond of the Oceanside section of the book.
“What I like about how we put the book together is that whatever page you open up to and whatever story you read, everybody finds a different page that they connect to, either based on where they grew up or a memory from when they were growing up, or a place they’ve gone to now,” Mandel Kaplan said.
“We tried to include places from the Brooklyn Bridge to Montauk and from Sands Point down to Long Beach. We tried to represent as much of Long Island as we could.”
In terms of the popular Facebook group, Mandel Kaplan said that she and her co-authors monitor the group throughout the day and post content at least once or twice a day. They moderate the group to keep everything related to Long Island and work to keep it a positive place on the internet.
“Hey Long Island Do U Remember?” is published by MacIntyre Purcell Publishing Inc. and can be bought online on Amazon, Barnes and Noble and Walmart. In addition, the book is available at local bookstores and Barnes and Noble stores on Long Island.
“It was a lot of fun to research and write, and our hope is that in each page that we cover, that the reader will learn something that they didn’t know before,” Mandel Kaplan said.
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