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Heart Of The Harbor

No Dolan Fireworks This Year

“There won’t be any fireworks on July 4,” said Caroline DuBois. She said letters have gone out to residents of Cove Neck from the Dolans telling everyone the news. Charles and Helen Dolan have celebrated their wedding anniversary with fireworks on the Fourth of July for many years. Having attended one of them was a great boon. It was a massive production and needed the cooperation of their neighbors, who were all invited to the party. We parked in an area along the road and with our invitation to show, we were picked up by a van and driven to the estate.

The entire beachfront was filled with tables and chairs. Food stations dotted the area. There was a carousel in the section where you first arrived. The food was served on china with real silverware: no paper plates and plastic forks. We sat with a basketball pro and his lovely family. When the party ended there were teddy bears for the children and stationery for the ladies. You knew you had been to a great party.

The Dolans greeted all their guests and they included everyone of note in the local area as well as celebrities. Charles Dolan was great with the children, said one woman. That party will now become part of Gold Coast history.

Honored Guests

Anton publisher Angela Susan Anton was a regular at the event, along with her husband (our beloved) Karl V. Anton until his untimely passing. I went to the party one year as Mrs. Walter Karppi because my husband was invited as one of the staff of the Oyster Bay Historical Society. Before that, for many years, I used to go to Theodore Roosevelt Memorial Beach with Madeline Bonasia, Myralee Machol and some friends. We brought beach chairs and sat in front of the sea wall until it got dark and we could watch the Dolans fireworks.

Many locals went out in their boats to see the fireworks up close and personal. If you were really connected you got a tape recording of the music that would accompany the fireworks. There were many levels of pleasure. One of the amazing features of the Fourth of July night in Oyster Bay was the speed it took to empty the park and the town. When the fireworks were over, the crowd marched as one back home or to their cars to quietly leave the park and Oyster Bay.

Although there was no explanation in the Dolans’ letter, readers will remember the tragic boat accident that happened last year as a family’s ship was leaving the fireworks event. That may have precipitated the decision.

But take heart, there will still be a big fireworks display in Oyster Bay this year, part of the St. Rocco Festival sponsored by the Italian-American Club. They are hosting the feast from Wednesday July 10 to Sunday, July 14. Their fireworks display will take place on Friday, July 12. So we will all have something to look forward to. If you want to support them, they are selling raffle tickets. Just call 922-9744 to purchase them. The club has become a positive force in the community.

Castro Ottomans

We had the pleasure of meeting Bernadette Castro who was the celebrity auctioneer at the Theodore Roosevelt Sanctuary & Audubon Center event, the 2013 Legacy of Conservation Gala held at Piping Rock Club in Locust Valley on May 4.

After serving as New York State Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation commissioner for then-Governor George Pataki, Bernadette Castro has returned to her roots. “I’m back with Castro Convertibles,” she said. A generation of TV watchers saw the young Bernadette demonstrating how easy it was to open a Castro Convertible sofa bed.

She sent us to www.castroconvertibles.com to see what she has donated to victims of Hurricane Sandy. “I donated ten ottomans that open into a bed to people in Long Beach” she said, adding, “We will be offering 20 more, shortly.” Her son Austin, an architect, stepped in and hiked up the ante for one of the vacation properties she was auctioning off, showing he has some of the family charisma.

Castro does four celebrity auctioneer stints a year and says the one for the TRS&AC is a favorite. She has also been the auctioneer for Planting Fields Historic State Park in past years.

Twins To Come

Also attending the gala at the Piping Rock Club was Sandra Coudert Graham, who announced that she is expecting twin boys in September. Her parents, Marjorie and Fritz Coudert were recipients of the prestigious Legacy of Conservation Award. Marjorie Coudert presently lives in NYC; this year is the fifth anniversary of Mr. Coudert’s passing. The Enterprise Pilot looks forward to announcing the birth of the Graham twins.

Best Wishes

Best wishes and great good luck to the Bellerjeau family of Oyster Bay. Chris is the newly appointed Yale Central IT Director of Learning Environments at the university in New Haven. They created the position for him. The family will re-locate in a historic house, circa 1760, in nearby Madison after the OB-EN school year. From their new home, said Claire, they can easily sail here for our marine events. The two are accomplished sailors, as well as musicians. They sing in the choir at Christ Church. They plan to rent their home in Oyster Bay so they are not leaving the area. Claire has done some wonderful research at Raynham Hall Museum and we are looking forward to reading her next piece, about a female slave of the Townsends at some future date.

Our Ambassador

Kirk Larsen, marine painter, was one of the artists on view at the Oakcliff Sailing Center art show recently. Kirk said he has been having an incredible year, winning top prizes for his art. His work is included in the permanent collection of the Mystic Seaport Museum of America and the Sea. He is the recipient of over 114 awards.

Although Kirk lives in Hicksville, he is always promoting Oyster Bay through his paintings. He is our ambassador through the art of marine painting, and he is a passionate local sailor. He says of his work, “I seek to capture the serenity or drama that I perceive in art. Each vista offers something at the particular moment it’s painted, unique to that moment.”

We featured Kirk in a mystery picture a while ago. We also won one of his watercolors, that of a sailboat, at a raffle at an Oyster Bay Railroad Museum gala. FYI: their next gala is a Hawaiian Luau on Thursday, June 20. My, my, this is a busy area.