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The Five-Point Weekend Escape Plan

Shack Up in the North Fork


5. Oddball Day

Inside Mitchell Park's large-scale camera obscura; the Custer Institute's giant telescope.   

Start your day in Greenport with coffee ($1.55) and an apricot scone ($2.75) at The Sweet Spot (300 Main St.; 631-477-6595), a newly opened eatery run by the owners of the North Fork Oyster Company. Then walk to Mitchell Park, where you can step into a camera obscura, a life-size pinhole camera that projects a 360-degree image of the surroundings into a darkened room. Use the joystick to control the lens and see what’s going on around town. Afterward, drive out to the end of Cedar Beach Road in Southold to the Suffolk County Marine Environmental Learning Center to join marine biologists who teach how to grow oysters, scallops and clams. Visitors can lend a hand to the working shellfish hatchery, community water gardens, boat-building shop, touch tank, aquariums, and wetlands. Afterward, wash off the shellfish at Cedar Beach; no permit is required in the parking lot, and there’s no fee to enter the pristine and uncrowded beach. After you’ve worked up an appetite, head back to Greenport for lunch or an early dinner at Sushi Sasuke Club, where chef Taka Meguro serves local fluke tempura with garlic, scallion, fried leeks, dried cranberry, and a spicy lemon and local wine dipping sauce ($12) and the popular tuna espresso roll special ($14): tuna, avocado, and espresso wrapped in soy paper. Next door you’ll find D’Latte (218 Main St.; 631-477-4060), a little pastry café known for its gelato (from $3.25). Later, take advantage of the North Fork’s optimal positioning for star gazing and head to the Custer Institute (suggested donation $5), a small observatory in Southold that’s open to the public Saturday evenings, 7 p.m. to midnight. You’ll have a guided tour of the night sky from volunteer astrologists while looking through powerful telescopes.

Published on Jun 8, 2011 as a web exclusive.

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