Third Friday has become an essential community occasion and a recognized business-boosting function for the vendors and shop owners on Tarrytown's Main Street.
However, the future of Third Friday is uncertain as key organizers are stepping down from managing the event.
According to organizers and elected officials Third Friday will be on hiatus at least through March, and may not return after winter.
"Right now, Third Friday needs to have funding," said Susan Burkhardt of Cappa Crucy & Co., one of the event's organizers. "One hand washes the other, and unless there are funds to do activities, you won't have the story tellers, the bands and the entertainment."
Burkhardt confirmed this week that Cappa Crucy would be stepping down from organizing Third Friday after holding the reigns for about eight months.
Started in September 2003, Third Friday is a unique program that is organized privately and supported partially by the local government through the Recreation Department. Businesses pay into a fund to be represented at the event, while the village supplies support staff and a stipend for entertainment.
Burkhardt said the event has been stifled by a lack of funding.
"There just isn't the grant money out there that was there was a few years ago when this started," she said.
She also said the village needed to step in an take a more active role in molding the event due to that lack of funding.
"The village has to decide what they want Third Friday to be, and decide what person they are looking for to run it," she said.
Tarrytown Mayor Drew Fixell noted there were some difficulties finding additional funding for the event, but voiced confidence that a new organizer would step in to run Third Friday later this year.
"The trick is to figure out how to do it and to find some sort of funding stream to supplement what the village pays for," Fixell said. "We'll see if we can find someone to take it on in the spring. Personally, I think its a good thing; it's not a perfect event, and its not an easy thing for the person who takes it on."
Burkhardt noted that organizing the Third Friday event was time-consuming, but also supplied a great chance to interact with the community.
"There is the vendor part and the activity part, and that makes it a larger job to coordinate and to manage," Burkhardt said.
"But it's been great organizing the event. We've worked with great people, we did work with the YMCA, the Tarrytown Sleepy Hollow Chamber of Commerce and worked with the Tarrytown Sleepy Hollow Arts Council, they were wonderful," she said.
If Third Friday's hiatus becomes permanent, it will certainly be missed by some downtown businesses.
Angel Rafter, the owner of Nu Toy store, is a supporter of Third Friday. She said she feels the event boosting her sales each month.
"Third Friday has historically increased sales 20 - 40 percent on that day alone," Rafter said during December's Third Friday event. "It's also a great way for the community to come together and help each other out."
Despite some unknowns going into the New Year, Joe Arduino, supervisor of the Tarrytown Recreation Department, believes Third Friday programs will return in April.
"We're between sessions right now," he said. "But it's a great program to get people to come downtown and to get people to realize what a nice village this is."