“He’d fly through the air with the greatest of ease,
That daring young man on the flying trapeze,”
Thanks to brothers Marco and Anthony Rosamilia, wannabe daredevils get a modern-day taste of that classic 1934 song by way of the siblings’ I.FLY Trapeze school. Well-experienced in the ways of circus acrobatics, the Franklin Square natives cut their teeth over a decade ago working at Club Med, where the all-inclusive vacation resort features circus and flying trapeze as part of its active lifestyle programming.
“We worked for the resort for a couple of years, teaching and performing every day,” said Marco. “We had a lot of guests [at the resort] from New York and on Long Island, people would always ask, ‘Where can I do this back home?’ The pair quickly realized that there weren’t options for flying trapeze on Long Island and they wanted to bring their talents back home and share with enthusiasts back home.
You don’t have to travel to the market in Marrakesh to breath in the aroma of fabulous herbs and spices. In a mini-shopping mall in Carle Place is Penzeys Spices, where Aladdin’s chef could have spent many happy hours.
Primarily a mail-order business located in Wauwatosa, Wis., since 1987, Penzeys opened here in Nassau County last year with the Carle Place store. It’s a bright and airy shop and what makes it especially wonderful is that there are open jar displays of all the spices so you can sniff to your heart’s content before making your choices.
Long Island’s next big venue is finding its home in an unlikely place. With a population of just above 15,000, Westbury is not known for Gold Coast mansions, sandy beaches or fine dining establishments. However, The Space at Westbury is hoping to make the village a cultural destination, attractive to guests from all over the island and New York City.
The Space, which is slated to open later this summer, will be a multipurpose entertainment venue, hosting everything from concerts, to theater productions to art shows. However, many local residents know it as the Westbury Movie Theater, which has been a landmark on Post Avenue since the 1920s. The Westbury Movie Theater first opened its doors on November 10, 1927, as people gathered to watch the silent film Hula starring Clara Bow while the University of Maryland Collegian Band played onstage. The theater flourished as a single screen house, until it was twinned in the late 1970s.
With school taxes the hot-button issue of local politics, I’m surprised we haven’t heard more about “school reform.” That is, bring a bottom-line-focused, data-obsessed corporate management style to our local public schools. Make taxpayers the “customers,” student achievement the “product” and the district superintendent the CEO (that’s Chief Executive Officer, not Chief Education Officer). “Profit” comes in the form of cutting costs and boosting “production” (i.e., test scores).
But according to some area educators, we are approaching this scenario at an alarming rate.
The Great Neck Board of Education recently took on the issue of state-mandated tests and said “Enough!”
In a resolution sent to everyone from local politicians to Governor Andrew Cuomo, the board declared “the growing reliance on, and mismanagement of, standardized testing is eroding student learning time, narrowing the curriculum and jeopardizing the rich, meaningful education our students need and deserve.”
I don’t want to bore you with the testing schedule of the average public school student, but to put it mildly, it is intense and getting more so each year. Or to look at it another way, if you came down with a mysterious illness and your doctor sent you to the hospital for tests, chances are you’d undergo far fewer evaluations than the typical middle schooler endures in an academic year.
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