Manhasset, New York

Manhasset is a hamlet (and census-designated place) in Nassau County, New York, on the North Shore of Long Island. As of the United States 2000 Census, the population was 8,362. Manhasset is a Native American term that translates to "the island neighborhood." In 2005, a Wall Street Journal article ranked Manhasset as the best town for raising a family in the New York metropolitan area As with other unincorporated communities in New York, its local affairs are administered by the Town.

The hamlet is served by the Long Island Rail Road, which provides direct and convenient access to New York City at the Manhasset station.


Manhasset is located at (40.792754, -73.693263).

According to the United States Census Bureau, the CDP has a total area of 2.4 square miles (6.2 km²), of which, 2.4 square miles (6.2 km²) of it is land and 0.04 square miles (0.1 km²) of it (1.24%) is water.


As of the census of 2000, there were 8,362 people, 2,831 households, and 2,185 families residing in the CDP. The population density was 3,505.8 per square mile (1,350.9/km²). There were 2,917 housing units at an average density of 1,223.0/sq mi (471.2/km²). The racial makeup of the CDP was 75.1% White, 12.3% African American, 0.9% Native American, 3.6% Asian, 0.1% Pacific Islander, 5.5% from other races, and 2.4% from two or more races. Hispanic or Latino of any race were 12.5% of the population. (Please note that the statistics are of the year 2000 and do not reflect the current population.)

There were 2,831 households out of which 36.4% had children under the age of 18 living with them, 63.1% were married couples living together, 11.5% had a female householder with no husband present, and 22.8% were non-families. 20.2% of all households were made up of individuals and 10.0% had someone living alone who was 65 years of age or older. The average household size was 6.81 and the average family size was 5.73.

In the CDP the population was spread out with 24.2% under the age of 18, 5.0% from 18 to 24, 27.5% from 25 to 44, 24.2% from 45 to 64, and 19.0% who were 65 years of age or older. The median age was 41 years. For every 100 females there were 87.4 males. For every 100 females age 18 and over, there were 81.7 males.

The median income for a household in the town was $88,472, and the median income for a family was $104,601. Males had a median income of $65,294 versus $41,997 for females. The per capita income for the town was $43,454. 5.7% of the population and 3.9% of families were below the poverty line. Out of the total people living in poverty, 5.4% are under the age of 18 and 6.9% are 65 or older. This disparity is accounted for by the fact that the Valley, a neighborhood which is politically and socially part of the neighboring Great Neck and physically removed from the other neighborhoods, is included in this census, as many people feel, erroneously.

Manhasset is a predominantly Catholic community, which caused some tension when the North Hempstead Supervisor objected to a priest's blessing at a 2005 Christmas tree lighting in the village.


19th century Manhasset was a farming community on the valley road (now Community Drive) from Hyde Park and Success Pond (now New Hyde Park and Lake Success) to Manhasset Bay, an inlet of Long Island Sound between the Great Neck and Cow Neck peninsulas. This was one of the passes through the line of hills separating the Hempstead Plains of Long Island from its North Shore. In 1898 the Long Island Rail Road built a high trestle (still the highest railroad bridge on Long Island) to carry a single track extension of the Great Neck line over the southern tip of Manhasset Bay and through the high land of Cow Neck to Port Washington. A station was built in the hamlet as a result.

In the 1920s, a few pioneering commuters from the City started turning a lowland rural community into a highland commuter town. A commercial district developed along Plandome Road. New public buildings appeared, including a red brick elementary school, a town hall for North Hempstead, a post office, and a telephone exchange for the peninsula. In 1941 Lord & Taylor opened a branch in Manhasset, the first branch of a Fifth Avenue department store to open anywhere. With Manhasset recentered upon Cow Neck, the old name for the high land was forgotten and the Valley withered.

Late in the 20th century, commerce on Plandome Road declined as the "Miracle Mile" on Northern Boulevard became more important. The public library (popularly called "The Jail" by many residents because of its brick-heavy, looming architecture) moved just south of its location on Onderdonk Avenue to the corner of Onderdonk Ave. and Northern Boulevard, next door to and towering over the historic Quaker Meeting House.

In 2007, the Manhasset negotiations were initiated between Morocco and the Polisario Front, in order to reach a peaceful settlement on Western Sahara.

"Manhasset Press" is the community's local paper published weekly by Anton News.


  • Manhasset High School
  • Manhasset Middle School
  • Shelter Rock Elementary School
  • Munsey Park Elementary School
  • St Mary's Elementary School
  • St Mary's High School
  • Our Lady of Grace Montessori School
  • The Language Workshop For Children - French, Spanish, Italian and Chinese classes for children and toddlers, 6 months to 9 years old LWFC website

The Manhasset School District covers not only the unincorporated areas discussed in the census reports, but several incorporated villages including Plandome, Plandome Manor, Munsey Park and part of Flower Hill. The Valley School, serving Manhasset's African American community, was closed in the 1960s by a desegregation lawsuit. This was not a racial issue, however, but more of a financial issue. Manhasset did not have a large enough black population to fill the quota for legal "desegregation" and the community did not feel it should have to bear the cost of providing transportation for additional black students from the neighboring town of Great Neck. The centrally located and antiquated Plandome Road School was demolished in the 1970s, having been replaced by the new Shelter Rock School.

Manhasset has a locally operated School Community Association (SCA) instead electing to be a local chapter of the Parent Teacher Association. The SCA, which boasts great support within the community, hosts a fundraising fair every year at Munsey Park School. Membership dues and profits from fund-raising efforts benefit the schools in Manhasset; no percentage of funds goes to a state or national offices of a larger organization, thus all monies raised benefit the Manhasset schools directly.


Manhasset High School
See Manhasset High School#Sports

St. Mary's

See St. Mary's High School (Manhasset, New York)


Manhasset is well-known for its high-end premium open-air shopping center, the Americana Manhasset. The center is situated along Northern Boulevard's "Miracle Mile" which is referenced in Billy Joel's 1980 hit "It's Still Rock and Roll to Me". The Americana first opened in 1956 as a simple community-style shopping mall; however, in the 1980s gradually it catered to luxurious boutiques such as Ralph Lauren, Williams-Sonoma, Brooks Brothers, Oilily, Prada, Giorgio Armani , Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Hermès, and Burberry, among others. In addition, a short distance away from the Miracle Mile is Lord & Taylor, which is often referred to as the first branch store in America. In addition to Lord & Taylor, Manhasset has supported branches of some of the most well known stores in New York over the years - B. Altman and Company, Bonwit Teller, Abraham & Straus, Best & Co., Arnold Constable, Franklin Simon & Co., Peck & Peck, W. & J. Sloane and J.J. Newberry.

The main village of Manhasset is situated around Plandome Road which contains several bakeries, pizzerias, delis, bars, coffee shops, and a movie theatre. Centralized in town is a small park and a landmark gazebo where the LIRR connects directly into Manhattan for a 28-minute commute.


Movie references

  • Miracle on 34th Street (1947) − In the film, Fred Gailey tells Mr. Kringle that he would like to buy a colonial home in Manhasset
  • Boiler Room (2000) - Portions of the driving scenes feature noticeable areas of Manhasset
  • The Good Shepherd (2006) − Portions of the movie were filmed in Manhasset.

Television references

  • Jim Brown, All American (2002) − Portions of the Spike Lee's HBO documentary were filmed in Manhasset.
  • Made (2003) − Scenes from MTV's TV Series Made were filmed in Manhasset.
  • Will & Grace - Karen states in one episode that she would like to use her helicopter to fly to Fortunoffs in Manhasset. (There is no Fortunoff in Manhasset).

Literary references

Notable residents/natives


External links

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