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Salvation Army Gears Up For Holiday Season

Volunteers, bell ringers always needed

The holiday season is around the corner and that means that Salvation Army volunteers will be out in force to assist the neediest people in Nassau County.

For Thanksgiving and Christmas, the Nassau County Salvation Army will have four facilities open, located in Freeport, Hempstead and Westbury.

Major Phillip Wittenberg is the commanding officer for the Nassau County Salvation Army. He is located at the 65 Atlantic Ave. branch in Hempstead. The big events coming out of that branch this year is the Thanksgiving dinner and the popular Angel Tree charity. This year, the Salvation Army is partnering with the Destiny Foundation for the Thanksgiving Day meal.

Even before that, on Friday, Nov. 16, the Salvation Army will unveil its Angel Tree at the Macy’s store in the Roosevelt Field Mall. Shoppers can take an angel off the tree, complete with the name of a Long Island youth. Shoppers will then sponsor that child for Christmas toys. This popular program generally helps over 1,000 local children with Christmas toys they might not otherwise receive and Wittenberg is hoping for another big result this year. On Dec. 19, the toys will be distributed to needy youngsters.

During the first week of December, the Salvation Army will be opening its equally popular toy shop, located on 165 Atlantic Ave. Currently, the Salvation Army is taking applicants for those who would like to work at the store.

The Salvation Army is legendary for its bell ringers, something that is as much a part of the Christmas season as Santa Claus or tree lightings. “We always need volunteer bell ringers,” Wittenberg said. “We can never have too many.”

In fact, any kind of volunteering is more than welcome by Wittenberg. “For anyone who wants to volunteer for one hour a day or for a single day, call us at 485-4900.”

The Hempstead branch, as noted, is one of the three sites the Nassau County Salvation Army operates. The Freeport site is supervised by Majors Jose and Ana Guzman. According to Major Wittenberg, their coverage runs from Valley Stream to Massapequa, south of the Southern State. This year, the Guzmans, according to Salvation Army officials, are set to launch a community-responsive mobile feeding, one that can serve several hundred meals at a time, plus a social services program using a service vehicle to better service a community’s unique needs.

On Thanksgiving Day, the Guzmans will be serving 400 meals at their 66 Church St. site in Freeport.  The Cheesecake Factory will be providing the holiday meals.

The big news from the Westbury Corps, which is located on Prospect Street is the impending construction of a  $10 million youth facility. That facility, Major Wittenberg said, is still several years away from groundbreaking ceremony, but its completion promises to be a great boon to the Prospect Street location.

Finally, the Hempstead location, this one at 194 Front St., serves as the Adult Rehabilitation Center (ARC), which runs the Salvation Army’s several thrift shops in both Nassau and Suffolk Counties. Proceeds from such shops go towards drug and rehabilitation programs. Damon Rader supervises the Hempstead location, whose volunteers also are responsible for putting out Salvation Army clothing collection boxes.

Every winter sees a great need for the less fortunate on Long Island. Salvation Army officials claim this year remains a special case. Community need, they said, has increased by 400 percent since the economic downturn, but every volunteer and every shopper who participates in the Angel Tree charity goes a long way to alleviating that situation.

News

During a recent meeting of the Farmingdale Board of Education, President Shari Bardash-Eivers addressed a controversy that had erupted among parents in the district surrounding comments that were made online about student data mining. Initially proposed as a component of New York State’s Common Core Learning Standards, data mining is used to gather information on students through a company called InBloom. However, the proposal to allow data mining through the use of InBloom was defeated by state lawmakers. 

 

For Eivers, the controversy had come about after she had made comments on social media sites regarding parents who were opposed to student data mining. Many referred to her comments as “insensitive,” for use of the terms “paranoid” and “ignorant” whilst noting that the same parents opposed to data mining seemed to have no qualms about activities such as using Google or their credit cards online—acts which she said carry many of the same risks. 

On April 4, members of the Farmingdale Board of Fire Commissioners appointed three new Chiefs of the Farmingdale Fire Department. After 14 years of service with the department, the newly minted Chief Patrick Tortoso is ambitious about his new title. 

 

“I wouldn’t be here without my members' backing,” Tortoso said.

 

At the ceremony, Frank Romano, ex-Chief of the Farmingdale Fire Department, gave his final rundown of the 997 calls the department handled in 2013, before handing over the proverbial reigns to Tortoso. 

 

“You guys always did a standup job,” Romano said congratulating his commrades. “This has been a rewarding experience.” 


Sports

John Galanoudis of Farmingdale, a junior student at Molloy College, batted .462 for the week with a .562 on-base percentage and a .615 slugging clip to help Molloy to a 3-1 series win over St. Thomas Aquinas. He scored four times, had six hits including two doubles, and drove in three runs. Galanoudis also stole a base and walked once.

 

— Submitted By ECC Sports

 

Erin Donovan of Farmingdale, a sophomore at Farmingdale State College, finished 6th in the High Jump at the St. Joseph’s Invitational competition. Her mark of 4 feet, 8.25 inches moves her to No. 7 on the All-Time list. 

 

— Submitted by the Farmingdale State College Athletics Department


Farmingdale High School’s Lady Dalers have staked an early lead in Nassau County Girl’s Varsity Lacrosse Conference I, after winning each of their last three games this season. Starting the season on the road, the Lady Dalers would open with a non-league victory over Sacred Heart on March 20. The Lady Dalers would go on to win the exhibition match 10-8, thanks to Tara Wahl who scored six goals to put Farmingdale in the lead. On March 22, the Lady Dalers would compete in their first game of the regular season against

South Side High School. During the game Jill Alonso put up two goals and four assists, helping the team to secure its 13-4 road win. 


Calendar

School Board Budget Adoption - April 9

CSEA Training - April 11

Comedy Dinner - April 11


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