Annual Sayville holiday parade on Nov. 30
The Greater Sayville Chamber of Commerce will be hosting their annual holiday parade followed by a winter wonderland shop small event

File photo

Annual Sayville holiday parade on Nov. 30

Story By: GLENN ROHRBACKER
11/21/2019


It’s a day in Sayville you’ll surely not want to miss. 

Kicking off at 10 a.m. on Saturday, Nov. 30 (the same day as Small Business Saturday), the Greater Sayville Chamber of Commerce will be hosting their annual holiday parade followed by a winter wonderland shop small event from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Brown’s lot on Main Street, with trolley rides and ice skating, face painting, sand art and carousel rides; the rain date is Dec. 1.

Later that day, the 13th annual Miracle on Main Street will begin at 5 p.m. and go until 9 p.m. with a gingerbread bounce house, carousel, ice sculptures, Lego display, Dickens characters, live music, dance performances, and of course, the ever-popular gingerbread house competition. Then, the tree lighting will be held at 6:30 p.m.

This year’s blue spruce Christmas tree was donated by the Pisani-Schuldt family of Karen Drive in Sayville. They donated the tree in memory of family member, Walter Schuldt. The approximately 25-foot tree, according to the family, is about 28 years old. Alice Schuldt lives in the home with her family, and her great-granddaughter Adriana Pisani, who is a second grader at Sunrise Drive, is excited to see her tree lit during the ceremony.

Their tree is the 13th tree picked out by chamber president Eileen Tyznar, who seeks out the perfect Christmas tree beginning as soon as January each year.

“This tree is the perfect shape—it has thicker branches perfect for the ornament balls and lights,” she said, eager to cut it down and re-erect it for the celebration. Upon asking family member, Keri Pisani, if she could use the family’s tree, Tyznar said, “her exact words were, ‘I was wondering when someone was going to ask us.’”

And so, early morning on Wednesday, Nov. 20, Tyznar and the Town of Islip’s Parks Department cut down the tree on Karen Street and re-erected it at Sparrow Park, ready to be decorated. Later on, Garnett Electric will dress the tree as they do every year. 

Come Nov. 30 at 6:30 p.m., the Pisani-Schuldt family will be invited onto the stage and asked to flip the switch, lighting the tree. The family, according to Tyznar, will also receive a professional photo in front of the lit tree, a sign dedicated in their name featured with the tree, and a new 6-foot tree of their choice donated and planted by Haase Landscape Inc. The town also complimentarily grinds the remaining stump.

“It’s a wonderful tradition and I look forward to meeting all the people who call me each year to see if their tree has potential,” Tyznar added. “We make them feel just as special as the Rockefeller tree donors.”

Tyznar expects crowds to reach up to 10-12,000 up and down Main Street, South Main and Railroad Avenue. Attendees, she said, will join in song and hold candles just before the lights go on.

“I just love it [the event] so much. There is such a unity to our community the second that tree is lit,” she added. “I look out on that stage and see all those people all around, all with lit candles… and it just takes my breath away and fills my soul.”

New this year

There will also be a live ice sculpture of a 7-foot town clock carved at 7:30 p.m. at the four corners. The carving, Tyznar said, will be done in honor of the clock tower that was lost due to an accident earlier this year, still awaiting insurance to be replaced. It will be the first Miracle on Main without it.

Gingerbread competition

Event organizers say anything goes for this year’s Gingerbread Competition, which is being held in conjunction with the 13th annual Miracle on Main Street, scheduled for Saturday, Nov. 30; registration begins at 3 p.m. Organizers request that participants register their entries with volunteers at the tent in front of Starbucks (located at 59 Main Street) by 4 p.m. Judging takes place from 6-7 p.m. The competition’s first-, second- and third-place winners are announced at 7:30 p.m., but all entries receive a participation award. Entries will remain on display until 9 p.m. 

The former owner of Sweet Gourmet, Marian Mahler, will join her son, Max, in helping judge the competition again this year as they have always done at this event. The event, she said, which she loves dearly, was created by her family and the Wikans, who co-owned the shop, and held every year for the last 10 years or so with the Greater Sayville Chamber.

“We are really glad the tradition will continue,” she said.