Friends of Connetquot River State Park Preserve

The Friends of Connetquot is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the preservation, conservation and history of the 3,473-acre Connetquot River State Park Preserve. We work to help management protect a pristine environment and historic buildings and artifacts. We also support educational programs, fishing facilities and hiking and equestrian trails.

In Memorium: Dr. Richard Steinberger

Eulogy for a Rock

To those who knew him, he was a rock in many ways. He was, at times, immovable.

He was a staunch believer in sensible conservation, A devoted supporter of this Park, And an adamant believer in its fishery. He was resolute in how to preserve and conserve.

His knowledge of our sportwas vast and distinctive. As a dedicated fly fisher and talented fly tyer, His techniques were without compromise, As were many of his attitudes about our craft.

Since he was a physician, and I, a scientist, We talked about health, especially as his began to fail. His views in this regard were just as resolute. I am glad my views most often coincided with his. When they differed, it was like two mountains immovably facing each other.

Despite all of this, this Rock had a soft side. He gave his all to The Friends of Connetquot and Idle Hour Fly Fishers. He, in many ways, enlivened both groups, And made them more than they would have been without him.

He had a sense of humor that was wry and often understated. He and I often compared punchlines of stories we both knew. Although the breadth of his humor and foolishness was all inclusive, He suffered fools badly.

He gave away much more than he was given. I know this because I was one of his recipients. I wish I could have given him more. But he knew what we didn’t: his time was short.

Now, he is gone. All we have left is our memories and this rock. It is a poor substitute for Richard Steinberger. It will, however, memorialize him for years to come, Even after we all are gone. And THAT is good!

I miss you, my friend.

Robert J. Porcelli, Ph.D.
In Memoriam
Richard “Doc” Steinberger, M.D.


Dr. Richard Steinberger


Gil Bergen

The Friends of Connequot mourn the passing of long-time CRSPP Manager Gil Bergen.

In 1973 Gil became the Park Manager when New York State purchased it and it eventually became the Connetquot River State Park Preserve. He was still the Park Manager when he died in his 89th year on Wednesday evening, April 4. 2018. Gil spent 58 years managing the beautiful 3,473 acre property and spent two years in the Army prior to 1960....

Click here to read about a wonderful man and his unique life.

Gil Bergen

President's Letter, FOC Newsletter, WInter 2023

The President's Letter for Winter 2023 has been released:

Here are the highlights:

  • Our Silver Anniversary Gala honoring John Remmer was a wonderful evening of smiling Friends, great food, and fantastic conversation!
  • The Friends, Park staff and our scholarship candidates had a wonderful day decorating the Clubhouse in December.
  • We now embrace the direction for the next 25 years of the Friends of Connetquot. We plan to shift our focus away from the Clubhouse and the famous Club Members to concentrate our efforts on the 3,473 acres that comprise the Preserve.
  • We also look forward to uncovering information about the men and women who worked and lived on the grounds and kept the Clubhouse functioning. This research is being accomplished by the History Team.

Please visit the President's Letter page to read the full letter.

Read the entire Fall 2022 newsletter PDF

STQRY Audio Walking Tour!

STQRY QR CodeDid you know you can take a walking audio tour of Connetquot River State Park Preserve using your own cell phone? Thanks to STQRY and the Friends of Connetquot, you can learn about the history behind the landmarks of the park such as Mile Marker "50", the various bridges along the trails, the Ice House, Hatchery and more! Plus, you can find out what to look for as you walk the trails of the park. It's a whole new way to see Connetquot even if you've been here hundreds of times or you’re hundreds of miles away!

Simply download the map here or get one at the entrance booth as you come in to the park. Start your tour at the Welcome Kiosk in the parking lot. Scan the QR code with your smartphone for pictures and audio or call 631-703-3313 and enter number 1 to begin the tour. Look for more signs throughout the Preserve. Snap the QR or enter the number on the marker and you'll be treated to a short summary of what you're looking at and what to look for.