Oyster Bay Supervisor Joe Saladino moved quickly to save the annual “Oyster Fest” after the event’s prime sponsor, Altice cut its sponsorship of the event, threatening cancellation.
Oyster Fest organizers - the Oyster Festival Committee and Rotary Club of Oyster Bay - faced a financial crisis because of the sponsorship cancellations.
Saladino called an emergency meeting to solve the funding problem, and save the Oyster Festival. First, Saladino promised to donate in $20,000 the Town’s in-kind services, meaning no taxpayer money, to the nonprofit Oyster Bay Charitable Fund, which organizes the event.
“The Oyster Festival not only allows us to showcase our beautiful Town and all it has to offer, it is a major fundraising event which benefits non-profit organizations in the community,” Saladino said.
However, more sponsors were still needed to save the event: Saladino then held a press conference on September 9th to request help to bridge the funding gap, and multiple local businesses and groups responded. Richard Kessel, the chairman of the Nassau County Industrial Development Agency, said his group will do whatever it takes to make sure the festival goes on.
Three businesses contacted the festival committee to help fill the gap. The Blumenfeld Development Group, Stop & Shop, and Ferrari-Maserati Long Island each pledged $5,000 to the event.
Other private donations came from the Indian-American community, with Mohinder Taneja, of the American Diversity Forum, pledging several thousand dollars.
Other private donations came from former NYS State Senator Carl Marcellino, and his wife Patricia Marcellino.