Stony Brook is a great big mix of Long Island’s past, present and future. Home of the massive Stony Brook University campus, where tech breakthroughs are being forged and the fine arts are celebrated, the community also basks in its history and bucolic North Shore surroundings. Here are six things you don’t want to miss if you’re in the neighborhood.
Stony Brook University
It’s just shy of 60 years old, but it is difficult to underscore the outsize role Stony Brook University plays as part of the local community and beyond. The Seawolves men’s basketball team danced in the NCAA Tournament for the first time in school history last year and Kenneth P. LaValle Stadium serves as a place for family fun when the football team is home during fall Saturdays. The campus is also home to numerous cultural attractions—especially the Staller Center for the Arts, which produces the Stony Brook Film Festival, and Asian-centric Charles B. Wang Center. Go.
Long Island Museum
No visit to Stony Brook is complete without a stopover at the Long Island Museum, a Smithsonian affiliate dedicated to American history and art with a Long Island connection. The 9-acre museum grounds are home to three exhibition buildings and five historic structures. Among them, the Art Museum houses a permanent collection of American art and two changing exhibition galleries. The 40,000-square-foot Carriage Museum houses what the museum boasts is the finest collection of American horse-drawn transportation artifacts in the world. Go.
Stony Brook Village Center
This colonial New England-style shopping center is home to a combination of high-end retailers, and specialty food sellers and restaurants that draw crowds. National chains include Jos. A. Bank, Chico’s, Loft, Crabtree & Evelyn and Godiva. There are also locally owned shops to peruse and cultural events at the Ward Melville Heritage Organization’s Educational & Cultural Center at the rear of the village. Go.
Sit back and enjoy the scenic ride to a dinner (or brunch) inspired by the seasons. Good mornings are even better with lobster hash browns and veal and mushroom ravioli. It’s a morning ritual in the kitchen where chef Dennis Young and his cooks crank out various fettuccini, fusilli and swollen gnocchi for the day. Young and chef Chelsea Taylor create an ambiance throughout the candlelit dining rooms that’s made for chatting with family and escaping everyday demands. Go.
Three Village Inn
The circa 1751 building became a tea room and began accommodating overnight guests as a quaint country inn in 1939. Owned by the Lessing’s catering powerhouse, it is home to Mirabelle, the perpetually highly rated French/American restaurant, and the casual Mirabelle Tavern. Go.
Avalon Park and Preserve
The 140-acre park and preserve is a great place to go for a quick walk or a longer hike, a pond, a labyrinth and loads of flora indigenous to Long Island. It’s free and open year-round. Go.
For reasons to love Stony Brook, explore a gorgeous Old Field home in the December issue of Pulse out next month.