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LIRR’s Cannonball service to Montauk gearing up for summer

Passengers at Penn Station prepare to board the

Passengers at Penn Station prepare to board the LIRR's Cannonball Express train to Montauk on Friday, Aug. 21, 2015. Credit: Craig Ruttle

The Long Island Rail Road is starting its Cannonball service to Montauk again as part of its new summer timetables, the MTA announced Wednesday.

Starting May 27, the Cannonball express train will depart from Penn Station at 4:06 p.m. each Friday with stops in the Hamptons and Montauk, dropping off passengers in Westhampton in 95 minutes.

The return Cannonball train leaves Montauk on Sundays at 6:37 p.m. Prices vary depending on desired seating.

Whether the train’s return is good news depends on which end of the Island you call home — the train is popular among young city residents looking for a weekend getaway.

Last summer’s run brought concerns about overcrowding on the trains and excessive drinking, even as Montauk residents and regulars tried to rein in the hamlet’s night life and discourage rowdy weekend partyers.

The Cannonball isn’t the only eastbound addition as summer approaches. The LIRR is also adding a 12:43 p.m. from Jamaica to Speonk on weekdays, a 4:06 p.m. train from Penn Station to Montauk on Thursdays and several additional trains to Montauk from various locations on Fridays in addition to the Cannonball.

Summer Fridays will also see additional two train times added for service to Fire Island’s ferry services in Babylon, Bay Shore, Sayville and Patchogue to help alleviate crowding on eastbound trains. The 8:04 a.m. from Jamaica and 10:59 a.m. from Penn Station start July 1.

For those heading to the North Fork, the 5:21 p.m. Friday train from Ronkonkoma to Yaphank will include a Greenport stop starting May 27, and an 8:38 p.m. from Greenport to Jamaica will make all stops to Ronkonkoma.

Long Beach and Jones Beach are also getting a boost in weekend service — extra trains will run from Penn Station at 7:45 a.m., 9:45 a.m. and 11:45 a.m. to Freeport to meet buses to Jones Beach. An additional train will run from Penn Station to Long Beach at 10:08 a.m. and back at 4:57 p.m.

In addition to the summer schedules, LIRR officials have also scheduled track work, which may impact commuters in coming weeks. Customers on the Far Rockaway, Long Beach, West Hempstead, Oyster Bay and Port Washington branches may see service replaced by vans or buses on some stretches and some trains will have departure times pushed backward or forward.

Consult the latest timetables and the Metropolitan Transportation Authority for up-to-date information on the projects.

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