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Riding Off Into The Sunset

Village trustees, staff bid

Robert Schoelle, Jr. farewell

All good things must come to an end and for Robert Schoelle, Jr., that would be the 34 years he spent as the Village of Garden City’s chief administrative officer. Schoelle attended his final board of trustees meeting in this capacity on Thursday, March 20. The long-time village resident has held the post since 1980 and served under 18 mayors.

“I would like to thank the boards of trustees for giving me the opportunity to be of service to this wonderful community. It has been an honor and something that I will never forget,” he said.

Mayor John Watras said Schoelle has been “a big brother and great friend” over the years. “I can’t say enough about him,” he said. “We just think the world of him and we’re going to miss him an awful lot.”

“When the history of Garden City is written, the names that will be associated with Garden City are Stewart, Hubbell and Schoelle,” Trustee Dennis Donnelly added.

During his tenure, Schoelle oversaw and coordinated projects too numerous to list that have greatly improved the quality of life in the village. Some highlights include establishment of the Belmont Festival; beautification of Garden City’s three business districts; designation of Stewart and Franklin avenues as the Garden City Village Green; purchase of the St. Paul’s campus and improvement of the surrounding playing fields; and, most recently, renovation of the Garden City Pool.

Trustees and village staff alike praised the tireless leadership of the exiting chief administrative officer.

Village Clerk Brian Ridgway applauded his unwavering dedication to Garden City, stating, “It’s second to none … It was common for Bob Schoelle to be on the fire scene, at a water main break, at a snowstorm, whatever type of situation this village had, this man was there.”

This was evident when Superstorm Sandy hit. Schoelle and his staff immediately moved into action. He worked closely with the departments of public works, police and fire in an effort to quickly clear streets of debris as the storm downed more than 650 village trees. His coordination of the monumental operation brought accolades not only from residents and business owners but from other municipalities as well.

“He has always done what’s in the best interest of the village,” Trustee Robert Bolebruch said.

Trustee Andrew Cavanaugh, who has served five years on the board of trustees, said Schoelle was one of the best teachers he’s ever had. “In his quiet way, in his conversational way, in his narrative manner, he really imparts an awful lot of information and an awful lot of his experience, which he shares so graciously with all of us, certainly with me,” he said. “I found it to be a wonderful learning experience to work alongside Bob.”

Schoelle, who retires effective March 31, will serve as a short-term consultant to aid his successor, Ralph V. Suozzi, during the transition.

The village intends to host an event in Schoelle’s honor, Mayor Watras announced. He will receive the Garden City Chamber of Commerce’s President’s Award at this year’s Pineapple Ball, to be held May 9 at The Garden City Hotel.

News

Ever since the Garden City School District passed a $36.8 million School Investment Bond back in 2009, the upgrades throughout the district have been quite substantial. And while most of it has gone towards infrastructure, external visible improvements have rightfully been a source of pride for the board, which has taken to conducting tours at the different schools preceding the monthly public meetings that are normally held at Garden City High School. On the night of the school board meeting held on Tuesday, Oct. 14  at the Homestead Building, the school board, administration and Superintendent Dr. Robert Feirsen went on a guided tour of the building by Homestead Principal Dr. Suzanne Viscovich.

Feirsen described the tour as a new tradition started last year where administration travels around each of the district’s school buildings in the Fall to observe its current offerings and recent upgrades.

In an earlier column, Mayor John Watras shared some helpful tips on how to secure your property in preparation for a hurricane. The following are additional recommendations on what you can do now to be prepared in the event that a major storm hits Long Island.

As the storm approaches, customers should take the following steps to prepare for the arrival of either a hurricane or tropical storm:


Sports

Stretching tips for the high school athlete

Prior to the start of high school running season, Garden City’s Physical Therapy Options (PTO) had an opportunity to provide a presentation to members of Sacred Heart Academy’s cross country team. Team members gathered at Garden City’s New York Running Company to learn strategies and tips for a successful fall season.

PTO staff members Dr. Meghan Goetz, Doctor of Physical Therapy, and PTO Aide Mike Murphy discussed the importance of stretching to prevent injury and provided strategies and tips for success for the high school runner.

The league started on Saturday, Sept. 13 at Garden City’s Tullamore Park. It runs from 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturdays. A uniform shirt and soccer balls are provided. Cleats and soccer shorts are recommended and players must wear shin guards. Age groups range from pre-k through 12th grade. Garden City residents and non-Garden City residents are welcome. Middle school and high school age volunteers are needed. No soccer experience is necessary. If you have any other questions, please contact Andy Garger at ajgarger@verizon.net or 516-775-8058.

— Submitted by the Challenger Soccer League


Calendar

Garden City High School Homecoming

Saturday, October 25

Marvelous Movie Matinée

Monday, October 27

A Map Of Artistic Inspiration

Saturday, November 1



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