Written by Pat Grace Friday, 30 December 2011 00:00
Momentum from a successful launch last year of Munsey Park’s village-wide “Light the Night” carried forward to 2011 as close to a hundred volunteers from the neighborhood were involved, including block captains along with their families, and both Little Garden of Light and youth volunteers.
The Munsey Park Women’s Club sponsored the event on Sunday, Dec. 11 at 5 p.m. when volunteers from the fire department stood watch the entire night over the 600 plus candles showing support of the Staab family at The Little Garden of Light at Waldmann/Polliwog Pond.
The Munsey Park Women’s Club partnered with Skills Unlimited to create the kits and a dedicated team of block captains worked incredibly hard and delivered over 500 kits to neighbors interested in participating.
Skills Unlimited offer persons with disabilities the opportunity to explore and develop their full vocational potential “training for a life of dignity and success.” Event chair Tara Kirkwood said, “We are grateful to all of our volunteers donating their precious time in a very busy season and to our partners at Skills Unlimited.”
Kirkwood’s team leaders Susan Sabiston, Brandee Hickis, Susan Hyde and Jennifer Johnston were instrumental in the planning and implementation of Light the Night this year and Kirkwood said, “Many capable hands and beautiful hearts put together a magnificent display of community spirit and togetherness. We had a perfect evening, no wind, even the moon wanted to participate, it was spectacular.”
So many volunteers were responsible for the success of the visually overwhelming transformation of the Village of Munsey Park. Griffin Hyde organized members of the Manhasset High School Student Council that assembled candles and set up parks and memorials. Susan Hyde commented, “It was important for us to include parks, memorials, Regan Field at Munsey Park School and the hill up Park Avenue—one of the primary entrances to Munsey Park—in Light the Night because they are integral to the spirit of our village. We couldn’t have done it without our volunteers from the high school’s student government, who helped assemble and place the kits. It was a terrific way to integrate their desire to participate in the community with our need for some additional helping hands.”
Seventh-graders and their families including the Whelans, Lotruglios, Hannans, Stratfords, and Postigliones helped their neighbors in need of assistance and helped setting up and cleaning up at The Little Garden of Light. Dr. Kendall with representatives from Munsey Park School, and caring neighbors were all on hand to show support for the Staab family at the Garden of Light.
“Anyone,” said Jennifer Johnston, “who walked or drove past The Little Garden of Light were overwhelmed with emotion at the beauty of the lights and the quiet peacefulness of the moment.”
Part of the proceeds from the event will be combined with last year’s funds for a Copley Pond beautification project. Over the last year, the Munsey Park Women’s Club has been closely working with the Village of Munsey Park to set in motion a project that will have direct impact on the environmental quality of the pond.
In addition, all Munsey Park Women’s Club Philanthropic funds are continually focused on community building events like the 9/11 Park Avenue Flag Tribute and other causes that affect, help and honor people in the community.