Patch – North Fork Not-For-Profit Plans To Purchase Southold Opera House

North Fork, NY

North Fork Not-For-Profit Plans To Purchase Southold Opera House

It’s a new chapter for Community Action of Southold Town, which will also change its name as it moves into a former church and opera house.

By Lisa Finn, Patch Staff
North Fork Not-For-Profit Plans To Purchase Southold Opera House
The former Southold Methodist Church had a short stint as an opera house before CAST made plans to purchase the space. (Courtesy Nest Seekers and Ruby Star Media. )

SOUTHOLD, NY — A former Methodist church that saw new life as the Southold Opera House will now begin its new chapter — Community Action of Southold Town, which provides services to those in need, is in contract to purchase the building.

According to Nest Seekers, the property, located at 539030 Main Road, is listed at $3.395 million.

Now, after more than 55 years using rented spaces in multiple locations, Community Action of Southold Town, which provides services to those in need, has announced plans to move into the space.

“After searching for an appropriate home for CAST for many years, this property is a dream realized, providing all we need to serve the North Fork community while also offering cultural and arts opportunities for all to enjoy,” Marc Sokol, CAST board president, said.

Located in Southold’s business hamlet, the space offer easier access to more residents, enough space for all of CAST’s essential programs and services, as well as ample parking, CAST representatives said.

“The North Fork is growing and changing, and CAST is growing and changing with it. Our purchase of the former Southold Opera House represents the next phase of our development, providing us with enough space to effectively meet the community’s growing needs,” said Cathy Demeroto, CAST’s executive director.

The space will allow for a larger food pantry and sharing room for clothing and household items, room for education programs for both children and adults, private meeting/interview spaces, a teaching kitchen for culinary and hospitality training, and a community garden to grow fresh food, CAST representatives said.

“For decades, CAST has provided vital services to North Fork residents in need. I am excited that CAST will finally have a permanent home centrally located to meet the needs of the community,” said Suffolk County Legislator Al Krupski.

CAST will aim to nurture local, cultural arts by hosting performances and community events in the historic structure.

“We look forward to finally opening our doors as the CAST Community Resource Center — continuing to work with our partners, friends, and clients, while also meeting and serving new neighbors. Even our name will take on new meaning as CAST will transition to become the Center for Advocacy, Support, and Transformation,” Demeroto said.

In 2015, when Anne-Julia Audray, along with her husband Oliver Chazareix, purchased the former Southold United Methodist Church on Main Road in Southold for just over $1 million, she had many plans for the church, first built in 1794.

Her dream, said Audray, an opera singer and executive director of the Long Island Opera Company, was to create a home for not just members of her company but community members and visiting artists, where she could offer opera and other musical performances and classes. She’d also hoped to create a B&B and French cafe at the space.

Audray and her husband worked for years on renovations and repairs, breathing new life into the church and manse.