Another major stride toward the revitalization of downtown Riverhead was realized on Tuesday.
Last week, announced that restaurant, owned by Jerry Dicecco, Sr. and his son, Jerry Dicecco, Jr. is the most recent downtown business to receive funding awarded to the town through the New York Main Street grant program.
The popular eatery, which has graced East Main Street since 1994 -- the restaurant is located adjacent to the -- was awarded $50,000 in grant funding to complete exterior and interior renovations, including signage and extensive upgrades to the kitchen, that are expected to total approximately $100,000.
“The Town of Riverhead greatly appreciates the assistance of New York State in helping downtown Riverhead reach its full economic development potential," said Riverhead Town Supervisor Sean Walter.
Walter presented an honorary $50,000 check to the Diceccos at Jerry & the Mermaid on Tuesday.
Riverhead Town was awarded a $500,000 grant in August by the New York State Office of Community Renewal, the umbrella organization of the New York Main Street program, to continue downtown revitalization efforts.
The program provides funds to carry out local projects or programs that can jumpstart revitalization efforts, especially in properties located within mixed-use commercial districts, neighborhoods -- or on historic Main Streets.
Riverhead has garnered approximately $900,000 in such funding since 2004.
Chris Kempner, Riverhead's community development director, said the New York Main Street funds stimulate private investment in the downtown business district. "The restaurant did a great job of adding to Riverhead’s resurgence.”
Walter commended the Diceccos for investing in the renovation. "They were required to provide a private match and did a wonderful job improving the restaurant," he said.