The town of Mamaroneck, founded in 1661, is one of Westchester’s oldest communities. With a natural harbor adjacent to the colonial-era Boston Post Road, Mamaroneck was a bustling town and trading center long before the American Revolution.
Mamaroneck, a Native American name translated as “the place where the sweet waters fall into the sea,” owes much of its early success to these sweet waters, with shipyards, fishing and docks all contributing to the early local economy. The arrival of the railroad added a resort and weekend community catering to wealthy Manhattanites. Over time, Mamaroneck evolved into a suburban bedroom community where many residents commute to jobs in New York City, White Plains, Greenwich, Stamford and other nearby employment centers.
The result has been a town that is diverse in every sense, with housing stock to match. Many of the “cottages” from Mamaroneck’s days as a summer retreat remain, particularly in waterfront neighborhoods such as Orienta Point. Other parts of town provide traditional post-war single-family homes and the downtown area has walkup rentals and multi-family homes.
The town of Mamaroneck is divided into three parts: the village of Larchmont, an unincorporated area and part of the village of Mamaroneck (the rest of that village being in the town of Rye). The incorporated villages and the unincorporated town all are self-governing. The town provides direct municipal services – police, fire and sanitation – to the residents of the unincorporated area, and recreation, property assessment services and election supervision to both villages. Children attend the Mamaroneck Union Free School District.
Local recreational resources include a larger waterfront park, public pool, ice skating rink, tennis and more.
Mamaroneck’s main commercial streets are the Boston Post Road (Route 1) and Mamaroneck Avenue. Local industry is centered along the railroad near Fenimore Road. A quirky vestige of Mamaroneck’s once robust working waterfront remains along Route 1, where a number of shipyards still build and repair high-end sailboats, motor cruisers and commercial vessels. (The Derecktor Shipyard is so well known for racing yachts that it built two 1987 America’s Cup entrants simultaneously – including the winner.)
Mamaroneck may sound familiar to golf lovers because the famed Winged Foot Golf Club was built there in 1910. The private club hosted a number of professional tournaments including the 1997 PGA Championship and the 1929, 1959, 1974, 1984 and 2006 U.S. Open.
Westchester County is known for a fast-growing fine-dining scene, but Mamaroneck is home to something far more humble that has been satisfying people’s hunger for nearly a century: Walter’s Hot Dogs. Incongruously located in a copper-roofed Chinese pagoda by the roadside, Walter’s has been selling its secret-recipe dogs and spicy mustard to generations of Mamaroneck residents. Perhaps it will become a tradition for your family.