Where to find firewood on Shelter Island

Shelter Island firewood

(Credit: Julie Lane)

An Island Thanksgiving isn’t complete without a fire to gather around with family and friends.

We know the forecast for Thursday will be chilly, just right for a fire. But depending on your source, we will either experience a harsh or mild winter. The Farmer’s Almanac is predicting typically cold winter temperatures, but less snow that we’ve seen on Eastern Long Island the past two winters.

Others warned of a brutal, snowy winter, but now seem to have backed back off as an expected El Nino seems to have dissipated.

Nonetheless, Islanders should take no chances of being caught short because even if there’s less snow and ice, the warm fall here is expected to give way to cold temperatures.

“I’ve already got the wood stove going at home,” said Gerry Siller, whose Grady Riley Gardenshttp is one of the major sellers of wood on Shelter Island.

He has already sold 12 “face” cords of wood so far this autumn and has about 40 face cords of seasoned firewood ready for customers. Another 40 is not yet seasoned, he said.

A face cord, for the uninitiated, is about 4 feet high, 8 feet long and about 16 inches wide, while a full cord is typically larger at 4 feet high, 8 feet long and 4 feet wide.

But Siller isn’t the only supplier of firewood on the Island, with many stands on private residences selling wood, usually for bunches worth $5 or $10 each.

Christian Clarke at White Oak Farm & Gardens also has plenty of wood and is ready to deliver it to meet your needs. Price depends on the amount you’re purchasing, he said.

He’s just beginning to get calls now that Indian summer weather seems to be waning and winter temperatures are showing their ugly side.

For information and to order, you can reach Christian at (631) 749 5814.

At North Ferry Road and the corner of Congdon Road is a small white building owned by the Kilb family, where firewood is available alongside honey and, as the Christmas season arrives, a place for wreaths.

While a sign appears alongside stacks of wood, no one was on the premises to answer questions about cost, delivery or other information, nor could Alfred Kilb Jr. be reached. It’s an honor system most times, but the stand is generally staffed on weekends.

Ride south on Peconic Avenue in Silver Besach and just below the intersection at Petticoat Lane is a private house with stacks of wood for sale at a cost of $5 per stack.

The small stacks are typical of what city dwellers with fireplaces in their apartments cart home. Neighbors say a visit to the house can provide information about making arrangements for deliveries of cords of wood to your abode.

The entrepreneurial spirit on Shelter Island prompts a number of people to jump into the market, so wherever you live, it pays to keep your eyes peeled for stands with homemade signs advertising firewood for sale.

And if you’re not adept at building a fire and keeping it going, there’s always those self-starter logs stocked by IGA that need nothing more than a match to get them burning in your stove or fireplace.