There’s no debating this: The first showdown between presidential nominees Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump Monday at Hofstra University is being met with as much anticipation as the election itself.
And while it’s impossible to snag a seat to watch the pair debate in person, other Long Island venues are hosting viewing parties for friends and foes to watch Clinton and Trump face off:
HOFSTRA’S SOUTH CAMPUS
Hofstra invites the public to watch a live stream of the debate at the John Cranford Adams Playhouse, which can seat 1,105 and is on the school’s South Campus. Expect a flurry of activity (and traffic) navigating to the site, but it’s the closest seat to the live action taking place on the other side of Hempstead Turnpike. You must RSVP in advance online.
INFO 7:30-11:30 p.m. at 118 Hofstra University (South Campus), 516-463-6818, nwsdy.li/2cppocT
CINEMA ARTS CENTRE
The Huntington independent movie house is hosting free viewing parties in its Sky Room Café for all three presidential debates and the vice presidential debate. Monday’s event can accommodate up to 100 people and refreshments will be available for purchase.
Event organizers say they are hopeful that this viewing party encourages a more in-depth exploration of the candidates long after they depart the Long Island stage and of the major issues facing Americans today.
“The Cinema Arts Centre has cultivated an environment of exploration and exchange,” says Raj Tawney, director of publicity and promotions. “While we recognize that the debates themselves may have limitations, the capacity of our community to bring valuable insights to one another is limitless.”
INFO 9 p.m. at 423 Park Ave., Huntington, 631-423-7611, cinemaartscentre.org
BAY STREET THEATER
The venue is expecting a big a turnout at its viewing party, based on the near-capacity crowd that came from the last such event eight years ago.
This time around, the theater can house up to 299 people. Doors open at 7:30 p.m., when pre-debate coverage will be shown. Drinks will be sold at a cash bar.
“It is simply important for us to be a place where the community can gather — sometimes for free — to learn more about issues that they find to be important in their lives,” says executive director Tracy Mitchell.
INFO 7:30 p.m. at 1 Bay St., Sag Harbor, 631-725-9500, baystreet.org
DELTA SIGMA THETA
The Long Island chapters of Delta Sigma Theta sorority are hosting an interactive watch party, inviting guests to learn more about Clinton and Trump’s platforms.
“Guests should bring their smartphone or tablet to enhance their viewing experience with online conversations about the debate,” event organizers said in a release.
The event is being hosted by the sorority’s Nassau Alumnae Chapter, Suffolk County Alumnae Chapter, Stony Brook University’s Pi Delta Chapter, SUNY Old Westbury Pi Sigma Chapter and the Adelphi University’s Pi Tau Chapter.
INFO 8:30-11 p.m. at Evergreen Charter School, 605 Peninsula Blvd., Hempstead; email email@example.com
PARTY IN THE HOTEL LOBBY
The Holiday Inn Express Stony Brook will designate a part of its lobby for a debate watching party. There is no cost to attend and refreshments and hors d’oeuvres will be served.
INFO 7 p.m. at 3131 Nesconset Hwy., Stony Brook. Must RSVP at tsapr.com, 631-471-8000