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Teacher Goes Out With A Twist And Shout

The Roosevelt Elementary School spring concert wore a veil of sadness this year when it was announced that after serving 39 years for the district, the famously adored Robert Stern has decided to make this year his last. If Stern’s goal was to go out on top, he has certainly exceeded that mark with this year’s concert topping the best of the best.

The concert played tribute to Broadway, with second graders singing “Sunrise, Sunset,” from Fiddler on the Roof, Beethoven with first-graders perfuming “Ode to Joy,” and The Beatles for the grand finale performance.

“I’ve learned never to underestimate a 6-year-old,” Stern said, before he introduced the coming number, “Young at Heart,” in the style of Frank Sinatra. Stern went on to tell the story of how when asked about the kind of music they listened to, one, otherwise reserved, student piped up that they liked Frank Sinatra, so he decided to include it in this year’s performance.

PTA President, Jennifer Scamell, thanked Stern for his contributions over the years. She described Stern’s concert as a “complete” concert in which he would delight us with music spanning multiple generations and covering a variety of genres. Rather than simply introduce the next number, Stern would typically share an anecdote and transport the audience back to the place and time where the song was originally heard.

“There is no concert like a Mr. Stern concert,” said Scamell.

On a similar note, PTA Vice-President, Jenn Isles remarked, “While we are happy for Mr. Stern, we are sad for ourselves, because there never has been nor will there ever be another Mr. Stern.”

For the finale performance, Stern described a scene at Shea Stadium in 1965 which permanently altered the course of music, when Ed Sullivan introduced--the Beatles. In a hot gymnasium in a school celebrating its 50th anniversary, Stern went on to introduce, “The Beatles,” as four second-grade students ran out with plastic  guitars and played the part of John, Paul, George and Ringo amidst squeals of delight from their back-up singers.

Stern has surprised his audience in a myriad of ways over the years, but this year, the staff and students at Theodore Roosevelt Elementary had a surprise for him. As he was about to dismiss the students, Roosevelt Principal, Gina Faust, took hold of the microphone and informed the audience there was yet one more number to be performed unbeknownst to their music teacher and up until that moment the master of ceremonies. Faust then guided the students as they sang “Happy Trails To You,” while swaying and waving a banner that read, “We Love You Mr. Stern.”

News

There is a new psychic medium on the North Shore of Long Island to compete with the original “Long Island Medium,” Theresa Caputo. Her name is Mary Drew and she has been working for more than a decade doing private readings. Recently, Drew has expanded her horizons and has been conducting readings at restaurants, public events and fundraisers.

“I discovered my ability to speak and to hear the deceased voices when I was 10 years old,” said Drew, who grew up in Brookville and now resides in Glen Cove. “The first deceased person I had an encounter with was my grandmother and it was a very profound experience, to say the least.”

The Oyster Bay Charitable Fund and the Oyster Bay Rotary Club hosted the annual Oyster Festival “Kick-Off” press conference on Friday, Aug. 15 at the flagpole in Theodore Roosevelt Park.

In attendance were NY State Senator Carl Marcelino and Town of Oyster Bay Supervisor John Venditto, both Honorary Oyster Festival Chairmen; Oyster Bay Town Clerk James Altadonna Jr.; Oyster Bay Town Councilman Chris J. Coshignano; Oyster Bay Town Councilwoman Michelle Johnson; Oyster Bay Town Councilman Joseph Pinto; Oyster Bay Rotary President Judy Wasilchuk; Verizon Title Sponsor Representative, Director of Government Affairs Patrick Lespinasse; Executive Director, h2empower, African Studies Specialist Helen Boxwill; Oyster Festival Sports Representative James Werner; Long Island Rough Riders Representative Sarah Culmo and Emcee Harlan Friedman.

The 31st annual Oyster Festival will take place on Saturday, Oct. 18 and Sunday, Oct. 19, from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Admission is free.


Sports

Picture-perfect weather was on board for the Mill Neck Family of Organizations’ Third Annual Sail the Sound for Deafness Regatta on Thursday, Aug. 7. The event, featuring an evening race of yachts, followed by a cocktail party, was held to benefit the organization that serves individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing or have other special needs.

In this year’s race, fifteen sailors took to the waters of Oyster Bay Harbor; three aboard their own boats, others on several boats provided by Oakcliff Sailing Center. The WaterFront Center’s oyster sloop, Christeen and two vessels from Oyster Bay Marine Center, brought a total of 45 spectators out to watch the race.

Kevin Mercier, 39, of Oyster Bay, led a large contingent of local runners in the Lynne, Gartner, Dunne & Covello Sands Point Sprint 5 Kilometer Run, held on the grounds of Nassau County’s Sands Point Preserve on Saturday morning, Aug. 9. Mercier was the 18th finisher overall and third in the 35-39 age group with a time of  21 minutes, 7 seconds.

Other local runners winning awards at the Sands Point Preserve were Nicholas Cuddy of Oyster Bay, who earned first place honors in the Clydesdale Weight Division with a time of 25:53, Joanne Gallo of Oyster Bay, who  took home the first place award in the women’s 65-69 age group with a time of 28:11, and Anja Hermann of Oyster Bay, third place woman in the 20-24 age group, who finished in 28:47.


Calendar

Movie at the Library

Thursday, August 28

Sagamore Hill Walk

Saturday, August 30

Hooks and Needles

Tuesday, September 2



Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com