New Hyde Park Village Hall was all aglow on Saturday, Dec. 1, as the village hosted its annual Christmas tree lighting and magic show. Valley National Bank and the Village of New Hyde Park Cultural Commission sponsored the event, which was held at the Marcus Christ Community Center.
“On behalf of the Village of New Hyde Park, I’d like to welcome you all to the annual tree lighting ceremony,” Trustee Donald B. Barbieri said to a standing-room-only crowd. “I want to first thank Rich DeMartino and Mary Durkin from Valley National Bank for sponsoring the event today. They’ve been good friends of ours for many, many years,” he said. Indeed, as in previous years, DeMartino and Durkin presented a check for the event’s magic show. This year, guests were entertained by Amore, a magician who engaged audience members of all ages.
When the tractor-trailer rolled into the parking lot on Thanksgiving night, the 550 trees and 200 wreaths had made a seven-hour trip down from Quebec. A few days later, a virtual army of residents came down to unload this precious cargo. Among the New Hyde Parkers pitching in were members of the New Hyde Park Fire Department, students and alumni of New Hyde Park Memorial High School, various New Hyde Park Lions and Boy Scout Troop 298 from New Hyde Park and Garden City Park. The occasion was the 50th Annual Christmas Tree Sale that was being spearheaded by the New Hyde Park Lions Club. Three hours later, this considerable task was completed and the Christmas tree lot was open for business. All trees are selling for $45 and as is the case with all Lions-related endeavors, sale proceeds will be donated to charity.
It takes a village to raise a child is a much-used trope/African proverb that was recycled as part of the title of a 1996 Hillary Rodham-Clinton-penned book. In the case of recent Hometown Hero recipient Diana Biehayn, her selfless participation in the local Girl Scouts troop and countless other organizations have very much made her a New Hyde Park community stalwart. But for all the accolades she gets for her mostly unsung efforts, the Queens native is shyly modest about it all.
“[Public service] just evolved from when my daughter was in Girl Scouts and I moved along with her,” Biehayn explained with a smile. “I went to Queens College as an adult and my major was sociology, so it just seems to be my calling. I never used it professionally, but I used it in my everyday life.”
While life is slowly returning to normal on Long Island and in the village following superstorm Sandy, stories continue to surface on how deeply residents were affected by the hurricane as well as last week’s nor’easter storm.
At last Tuesday’s village board meeting, resident Andrew Faglio related a story of a 30-foot tree which fell across the street from him, on South Park Place, as it was knocked down during the nor’easter storm.
The owner who decided to move the New York Islanders off Long Island once its lease expires in June 2015 may play a role in filling the potential void left by the teams’ departure. County Executive Edward P. Mangano, developer Bruce Ratner, Isles owner Charles Wang and Don Monti of Renaissance Downtown think they have a plan in place to solve the developmental conundrum that is the Hub, which includes Nassau Coliseum.
The group announced a strategic “Reuse Plan” on Tuesday, Nov. 20 that reportedly will transform the Coliseum within the first half of 2013. Others have tried and failed where Ratner is venturing and the 77-acre site in Uniondale could become barren in three years once Wang departs for Brooklyn’s Barclays Center.
In reality, Dempsey should not have been shocked that he earned the prestigious honor of being elected into the Hall of Fame considering his incredible accomplishments. He has virtually become the face of the Irish Rover franchise as he has made an impact not only as a player, but also an administrator and currently the club president and league’s third vice-president. During his 30-year tenure he has brought home 10 New York State championships as well as 20 Long Island League championships, 24 Long Island Cup champions and six Sportsmanship Awards. Needless to say, he has made a significant impact on the club.
New Hyde Park Mayor Dan Petruccio echoed the sentiments of New York Governor Andrew Cuomo last week as he opened Thursday’s village board meeting by blasting the Long Island Power Authority (LIPA), for its performance in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy.
Speaking before a group of about 10 residents, the day after a nor’easter storm dropped several inches of snow on Long Island, Petruccio reported there were still numerous village residents without power and he called LIPA’s post-Sandy restoration efforts “unfathomable,” saying that the utility had dropped the ball at “all levels,” and that they “couldn’t have handled the situation any worse than they did.”
That is what Congressman Peter King said at a press conference in which elected officials called on the federal government to send resources to get the job done in turning power back on for all Long Island residents. On Friday, Nov. 8, 11 days after super storm Sandy devastated Long Island, the Long Island Power Authority (LIPA) reported that more than 81,000 Nassau County customers remained without power and more than 162,000 throughout Nassau and Suffolk. That was enough for King, County Executive Ed Mangano, Congressman Steve Israel, New York State Senate Majority Leader Dean Skelos, Town of Hempstead Supervisor Kate Murray and Town of Oyster Bay Supervisor John Venditto, to hold a press conference and ask the federal government to send the resources to do the job which LIPA has not been able to.
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