SUNKEN MEADOW STATE PARK
Directions: The Sunken Meadow State Park is located in Suffolk County in the Town of Smithtown, on the North Shore of Long Island, New York. It is forty-six miles from Manhattan on the northern terminus of Sunken Meadow/Sagtikus Parkway. Long Island Expressway exit 53.
Sunken Meadow State Park
Phone: (631) 269-4333
This 1,266-acre beachfront park on Long Island Sound also features a trio of 9-hole golf courses (open to Nov. 26) and a trail used for cross-country running competition.
Overview: Sunken Meadow State Park has tidal mud flats, bird sanctuary, golfer's paradise, rolling meadows, wooded hillsides, marshes and a dam-the Sunken Meadow State Farm has only one alternate name that honors Governor Alfred E. Smith, but a serpentine list of habitats that takes one's breath away. It also features a wide range of topography that sustains a variety of flora and fauna. The park seems to have been given an exclusive access to the Ocean by the Divine, albeit in the form of a relatively modest width of the Long Island Sound. The three miles of beach meets tall appears to be slim in proportion, with glacier-formed bluffs at the west end of the shoreline. Although more elbow room would have been welcome in the sandy bit between the surf line and regular land, the imposing towers of rocky cliffs that arise so abruptly, humble mortal humans beyond overt complaint.
History: Governor Alfred E. Smith / Sunken Meadow State Park were formed from several smaller parcels but most of its original area of 520 acres was assumed from the late George B. Lamb and his wife, Antoinette Storrs Lamb. In 1928, a large section of the beach consisting of about 400 feet of frontage on Long Island Sound was carried to the State by the Town of Smithtown. Since then the park has been expanded by different acquisitions to a- total of over 1200 acres.
The park took its name from the low meadowland which separates the narrow sandy beach from the uplands. Access originally was by way of a quarter mile-long. Boardwalk was also erected on-stilts across the meadows and creek. Later big parking fields and a modern bridge and roadway for automobiles were constructed.
Facilities: 3-mile beach, picnic area (umbrella rentals), refreshment stands (9 a.m.-5 p.m. daily to Oct. 31, then 10 a.m.-4 p.m. weekends), 3 playgrounds, showers, 5 softball fields, soccer field, 4 basketball courts, 4-mile nature trail, cross-country skiing/clinics, hill sledding, fishing (permit required for night fishing to Dec. 31), 2 miles of bicycle trails, boardwalk, aid station. One mile of north end of the Suffolk Greenbelt Trail runs through park.
Pets: No dogs year round. .
Events: Spring golf tournament May 20, radio controlled model airplane exhibition Sept. 15, cross-country ski clinic (date not set).