In 1662, Claes Cornelissen Van Cats sailed from his home in Schoonhoven, Holland to settle in what is now, Bushwick, New York. Van Cats, a firm believer in democracy, home rule and civil liberty, was a knickerbocker, who fought against the autocratic rule of Governor Stuyvesant. Van Cats died in 1692, but he lived on through his family, some of whom now rest in the Van Cott Cemetery of Farmingdale.
Vicki Gruber, a corporate and securities attorney, came to the Farmingdale Public Library on Feb. 9, for a discussion on the history of the Van Cott Cemetery as part of the Farmingdale-Bethpage Historic Society’s “winter program series” at the Farmingdale Public Library. Gruber has been studying the Van Cott Cemetery in order to preserve the rich history behind the plot of land, and is proposing a marker be erected to bring attention to its purpose and denote the history of the site.
A recent gas leak in downtown Farmingdale has village officials and utility service providers pointing fingers over who is at fault.
On Feb. 6, firefighters and police were called in to evacuate residents and business owners in the area abutting the construction site of Jefferson Plaza, after reports of a gas leak at 154 South Front Street.
Farmingdale’s Breakfast Rotary Club welcomed the Year Of The Horse to town with a celebration at The Lotus Garden Restaurant on Sunday, Feb. 9, which the club holds annually to raise money for its endeavors through the year.
“The Chinese put a lot of emphasis on the new year,” said Ying Xing, reference librarian of the Farmingdale Public Library, who was on-hand to explain the meaning and customs of Chinese New Year. “It is important and everyone is expected on Chinese New Year to come home.”
A recent string of robberies had Nassau and Suffolk county police working together to catch the culprits. And now they've succeeded, say authorities.
According to detectives, at approximately 5:51 p.m. on Jan. 28, 18-year-old Adam Baron of Melville entered the Chase Bank on Main Street in Farmingdale and handed the teller a demand note. After receiving an undisclosed amount of cash, Baron fled the bank.
Looking for a gift outside of the heart-shaped chocolate box? Something beyond the sappy sentimentality of a Hallmark card? The Nassau Mid-Island Chapter of the Barbershop Harmony Society delivers sweet romance with just a few notes.
The local chapter of the Society has been bringing couples together through its Singing Valentines program for over 20 years. This year, four tuxedo-clad barbershop quartets from the organization will go all over Nassau and Western Suffolk to sing “Heart Of My
Heart” and “Let Me Call You Sweetheart” to love targets at workplaces, homes, schools, care facilities and other locations.
“It’s been a successful and rewarding program,” said the Nassau Mid-Island Chapter musical director Maurice Debar. “You never know who you’re going to sing for, but we always get an emotional reaction.”
Singers and skaters from all over the country recently gathered at Bryant Park in New York City, for the annual Sing and Skate Against Breast Cancer benefiting the Jacobi Medical Center Auxiliary.
Participating in this year’s event, 8-year-old figure skater Hiram Cowhey of Farmingdale took the opportunity to showcase his skating skills alongside former Olympic athletes. Currently attending Northside Elementary School, Cowhey said he spends most of his spare time skating in the hopes of one day going pro.
New York State Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s proposed $137 billion spending plan will increase education aid by $807 million for the 2014-2015 school year, but school officials say it will still put them up against the wall.
“We are hoping the legislature can make some significant improvements [to the budget],” said Farmingdale Schools Superintendent John Lorentz. “Otherwise, Farmingdale and other school districts will have some tough decisions to make.”
Based on the preliminary budget figures, the Farmingdale School District will receive $746,419 more than last year, or a total of $27,966,058—an increase of 2.74 percent.
Despite the bitter cold and a few inches of fresh snow covering the ground, the St. Luke’s Lutheran Church Community came out in droves on Saturday, Jan. 25 for the first “Taste Of St. Luke’s” event. More than 125 people chowed down on dishes made by more than 30 church members in an effort to raise money for a new community center.
“A lot of people don’t know, but we bought the Chase bank next door, the building,” explained Karen Wiking, organizer of the event and the director of Christian education for the parish community. “Even though all of the teller windows and all of the bank stuff is gone—we already ripped that out—it still very much a bank. All of the proceeds from this event are going towards renovations on that building for more community programs.”
After 20 years with the Farmingdale School District, Northside Elementary School Principal Elizabeth Craig Garavuso plans to retire at the end of the 2014-2015 school year.
“I love the people here,” Garavuso said. “Farmingdale is a solid middle-class community, where I found lots of families were very receptive to working with the schools and taking advice from teachers and administrators.”
Prior to her tenure in the Farmingdale Schools, Garavuso worked for St. Agnes Catholic School in Rockville Centre, as a math and computer teacher in the East Meadow Schools, and as the assistant principal of Oldfield Middle School in the Harborfields Central School District.
Farmingdale School officials recently discussed the district’s new bus contractor, whose services were acquired after the previous transportation, Atlantic Express, filed Chapter 11 bankruptcy and liquidated its assets.
“Our contract was awarded to Educational Bus Inc. and without question they are the company that we were hoping that we would get,” said Farmingdale Assistant Superintendent Barbara Horsley. “They are a local area company, so they know our district. They work with the Massapequa School District and now they are working with us...over the holidays they spent a lot of energy to make sure that they knew the routes, and they hired most of our old drivers, so we have the same drivers doing the same routes. The transition has been smooth and is going well.”
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