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Kicking It Forward

U.S. National player holds clinic

Approximately 75 of the village’s best young soccer players got to experience what it is like to play with one of the best players in the world. On a recent Friday evening, the Garden City Centennials held a clinic given by U.S. National Team player Heather O’Reilly for the Under 10–12 girls travel teams. O’Reilly began her career with her first international goal in 2002 and has been a key player in three Olympic gold medal wins and two World Cups, as well as owning the longest consecutive games played for the U.S. Women’s team.

The 90-minute clinic was focused on giving the youngsters an idea of what it’s like to perform side by side with a professional athlete in a sport they love. From the time Heather arrived to the minute she left, the girls were in awe, not only of her fantastic soccer abilities but of her demeanor. O’Reilly demonstrated to the girls that you have to have passion, commitment and dedication to succeed in all you do. She told them that coaches will eventually notice a great attitude, and they respect that.

After running the girls through a series of three different drills, O’Reilly spent some time talking to the girls and answering some very focused questions. The girls got a kick out of hearing what her most memorable moment was as O’Reilly related “it was when I was able to score the winning goal in the Olympic semi-final match off a pass from my hero Mia Hamm. And the best part about it was the fact that I didn’t score about five minutes earlier on a clean shot and Mia encouraged me to hang in there, it will come. And it certainly did! So if there’s one thing I would tell a young girl starting out, it would be to hang in there no matter what – it will come.”

O’Reilly also spoke of how she fit in on the national team since she started playing so young, “Every time I’ve competed in the Olympics, it’s obviously been a different role on the team. In 2004, I was probably the last player chosen on that team. I was just a young kid, only 19, I was just happy to be there and happy to contribute and play with some of my idols like Mia Hamm, Julie Foudy, Brandi Chastain, those legends of the game. Then in 2008, my role grew and now I’m seen as a veteran player. So my role has grown even more to guiding players like Alex Morgan through her first Olympic Games and share what I’ve learned in my games.”

As O’Reilly closed out the evening, she posed for pictures and signed autographs for each of the girls along with photos, soccer balls, playing cards, cleats and jerseys.

News

Stewart Manor Fire Department to host open house

You hear the horn sound multiple times a day, around the clock, but did you ever wonder what happens during the critical moments after a distress call is made to the firehouse? Who are the volunteers who are stopped in their tracks at the sound of that horn and dash off to help a neighbor in need? You’d be surprised to learn that it could be the gentleman you see walking his dog after work in the evenings, the woman you see standing at the bus stop with her children every morning, or even the young man you used to see playing with his friends in front of your house.

April 19 fundraiser to be

held for baby with rare disease

Tom Onorato, the nephew and office manager of Dr. Joseph Onorato Garden City practice All Island Dermatology Plastic Surgery & Laser Center, recently celebrated the birth of a baby boy with his wife Melissa. Both were thrilled when Thomas Kevin Onorato came into the world on September 10, 2013. Despite being born five weeks early, baby Thomas managed to surprise his parents with his indomitable spirit and was sent home with a clean bill of health. A mere four days later began the fight for Thomas’ life.


Sports

Easter Egg Hunt For Pre-K To Grade 5

The Garden City Recreation Department is once again sponsoring the annual Easter Egg Hunt on Saturday, April 19 at Community Park’s fields. This Year Three hunt will be held at 10 a.m. sharp with three age divisions: preschool to kindergarten, grades 1 and 2; and grades 3 to 5.

Special eggs will be stuffed and hidden for all divisions. Each hunt will also feature a grand prize (an Easter basket filled with goodies) which will go to the youngster who finds the egg marked “#1 Lucky Egg.” For further information about the hunt, please call the recreation department at 516-465-4075.

Commitment at Kellenberg

Garden City residents continue to excel while participating in the athletic program over at Uniondale’s Kellenberg Memorial High School.

Each season, coaches of Kellenberg sports pick one player from their squad who has demonstrated remarkable commitment to the team through their hard work at practice and in competition.

The Village of Garden City has a long history of residents who've excelled both on the academic and athletic side of the ledger at Kellenberg. This time around, seniors Kelly O’Donnell (varsity cheerleading), Stacy Madelmayer (varsity girls basketball) and Bryan Salecker (swimming and diving team) have all been awarded the Commitment Award for their outstanding efforts, devotion, hard work and commitment to their respective teams.


Calendar

Going To The Birds (Sanctuary)

Saturday, April 26

Nassau Coaches Meet

Saturday, April 26

Making A Beautiful Noise

Friday, May 2



Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com