Smith Haven Mall
Lake Grove, New York - circa 1970's
Unfortunately this photo isn't the best quality (I'm looking for a better one), but it's a mall I haven't covered here yet so I thought I'd get the ball rolling with it and add it to the archive.
Quality aside, though, I love this picture. The lighting, the mood, and a cool blobby modern art sculpture (commissioned, I believe, from sculpter Alexander Calder) sitting in the fountain or pond there, gives me a lot to dig in this one! And Smith Haven Mall certainly had an interesting opening day in 1969. Sheldon Klotz, who supervised its building by Winston-Muss Inc., relates the following story I found online:
Opening day also presented challenges. "It was a fiasco," Klotz said. A water main break early in the morning cut off water to Smith Haven and led town officials to propose cancelling the grand opening because the sprinkler system and toilets wouldn't work. "I told them, `We can't cancel it. Thousands of people are going to show up and you don't have enough police officers to turn them away,"' he recalled.Wow. The entire article, The Malling of Long Island, is a great read, btw, if you're interested.
Town leaders agreed, allowing Klotz to invite volunteer fire departments to encircle Smith Haven with pumper trucks in return for allowing them to ask shoppers for donations, and to set up bucket brigades to keep the public toilets filled while a work crew fixed the broken water pipe by mid-afternoon."
Mall history: 1969 - present
Developer: Winston-Muss Inc.
Current website: here
Current aerial view