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Volunteer Appreciation Installation

Part of the success of the Oyster Bay-East Norwich Chamber of Commerce is that they are appreciative of the work of their volunteers. They thanked all those who helped them over the year as they held their Installation Dinner on Thursday, Feb. 27 at The Italian American Club. The Coach Grill & Tavern catered the dinner and served hot hors d’oeuvres.

Nassau County Legislator Donald MacKenzie gave the oath of office to the chamber members. He also “pinned” new board member Colleen McKean. She is a marketing professor at Stony Brook University and is a member of the Oyster Bay High School PTSA, and is one of the organizers of their fundraiser the Taste of the Town. This year it will be held on May 15.

Sally Robilotto was honored for her service to the chamber and given a gift and a bouquet of flowers. Walter Imperatore said, “Sally has retired from the board. She was our secretary and was always there for Cruise Night as well.”

It was a great time to hear all about what’s going on in town. That includes the Hand-Stitched Hamlet community art project which, under the leadership of Patricia McSkane, is going along “sewingly.” If you would like to become involved in a Crochet Boot Camp please call 516-558-7800 to sign up for the next event.

The chamber calendar of events includes: Cruise Nights under the chairmanship of Austin Azzaretto which begins on Tuesday, May 20 and runs from 5:45 to 9 p.m.

The Spring Splendor event takes place on Monday, April 28 at Dodds & Eder Home at 7 p.m. (a ticket price has not been determined as yet), which will fund their Beautification & Seasonal Street Decorations program.

The 11th Annual Health Fair, again chaired by health professional Michele Browner, takes place in May with a date still to be decided upon. This year will be the 9th Annual Brooke Jackman Race for Literacy, which traditionally is held the same day as the Health Fair. The date and times of both will be announced later.

The ArtWalk and Exhibitions program is being chaired by Jim Perna of Long Island Picture Frame & Art Gallery. He is exploring a new approach for the project this year. He has a lot of artists interested in the event based on last year’s successful program held on Sundays during the summer.

The Taste of the Town event, a fundraiser for the Oyster Bay High School PTSA, takes place on Thursday, May 15.

The WaterFront Center’s annual Bay Day event is scheduled for Sunday, June 1.

A Business Expo is planned for member to receive professional services and for people interested in doing business in Oyster Bay with no date set as yet, said Imperatore.

The Harbor and Beach Cleanup by the Friends of Oyster Bay, Town of Oyster Bay and the North Oyster Bay Baymen Association takes place on April 26. At the same time the chamber is coordinating a hamlet cleanup and planting event with time and details to be announced.

A food drive was another topic the chamber discussed. Last year they collected food donations for Long Island Cares, the Harry Chapin Food Bank, during Cruise Night and plan to do it again. They are looking for more ways to help the community.

The chamber has also begun a group, the Friends of the Hamlet, for people who are interested in working with the cleanup and beautification projects, as well as the Hand-Stitched Hamlet project. “For those who sponsor a tree or pole for the Hand-Stitched Project, they become a member of the chamber group for a year,” said Imperatore.

Chamber President Dottie Simons said that they, and heads of other organizations in town, are waiting for a date to be set for a meeting with the Town of Oyster Bay to get an update on what is happening at Firemen’s Field. President Simons added, “However, we have heard that a ground breaking is expected within the next month for moving the entrance to the park.” The town is planning to change the small walk-in entrance off Maxwell Avenue about 20 feet east, to line up with Audrey Avenue.

The 2014 officers are: Dottie Simons, president; Walter Imperatore, vice president; immediate past president, Michele Browner; Susan Dembo, secretary; and John DeLillo, treasurer. The board directors are: Austin Azzaretto, Robert Brusca, Esq., Bernie DelBello, Catherine Drabin, Tina Mazzarella; John McEvoy; Colleen McKean; Chuck Panetta; Dawn Rilery; Bob Santos; Davis Waldo; and Fran Walker. Shari Cope-Dembowski is the administrative assistant of the chamber. She is in charge of their weekly e-blast that keeps the community informed with what is going on in the community. For more information call the chamber at 516-922-6464.