Terrance Saporito said when he and his three business partners and close friends Brian Jones, Chris Wade and Al Carrabis decided to expand their popular Long Island Strong store in Sayville, they wanted to create something unique.
“We wanted it to be more than a store,” he said. “We wanted to give our customers an experience. We wanted them to go ‘wow’ when they came inside.” Now, that store is a reality. South Quarter Supply at 10 Main Street is open for business.
Saporito, who is the father of two young sons and has worked as an IT manager for 15 years, said, “We started Long Island Strong in 2014. The business started out with a T-shirt. It quickly grew to be a big brand. We opened the store in back of this building in 2017. A portion of our Long Island Strong profits went to charity. We wanted to give back to the community. Now we are expanding to include other brands, including our own South Quarter Supply brand, and others both local and national.”
The store is, indeed, unique, with its ‘80s retro theme along with an Andy Warhol pop-art vibe. Saporito said he created most of the designs, including the ever-popular Long Island Strong logo.
“Now we collaborate with other artists,” he said, especially the Greenport designer Ricky Saetta (also known as Ricky Teevee), who made the fixtures and furniture. “We had a very close collaboration with Ricky. We leaned on him so much. He does all the work by hand. He is a Ninja with woodwork.”
Saetta’s workmanship and imaginative use of upcycled and found materials is something to see. He took discarded TV sets he found in the trash or by the side of the road, cleaned them up, and turned them into works of art.
“We’re excited to share this nostalgic wonderland we built here. About the upcycled TVs – I found this one on the side of the road in a snowstorm covered in road salt... and now look at her,” Saetta said in an online post.
The TVs hang on the south wall and contain logo stickers of various kinds. The TV at the top plays an eight-hour continuous loop of old commercials. There is also a wall of real vinyl records displayed next to T-shirts mounted on blocks to create a work of art as well as sales display. The dressing room is another work of art, as are the wooden clothes racks, all made by Saetta. He created the sales counter out of stacked old videotape boxes.
Saporito pointed to the large metal sign that says “South” dominating the east wall. “This is from South Bay Cinemas in West Babylon that was torn down. We bought it from F&M Goods in Babylon,” he explained.
An old telephone booth displays the phone numbers for “Ghostbusters” and “Back to the Future,” along with the phone number of the store.
“We plan a big renovation for the front of the store, along with the crystal shop next door. We waited six months to get the permits and prepare. Now we hope to have it done in about a month,” he added. “The windows and façade of the store will be something really different for Sayville.”
Saporito’s children were enjoying the rebuilt retro arcade games like Pac-Man that their dad enjoyed.
“For me, this store is about my child- hood, the things I enjoyed – the vinyl records, the TV sets, the arcade games,” he continued.
For Saporito, his vision has come to life.