Written by Marilou Giammona Friday, 07 January 2011 00:00
In the aftermath of last Sunday’s blizzard, Stewart Manor residents made lemonade out of lemons—or in this case, ice pops out of icicles. The magic of Christmas remained in the air, as residents enjoyed unexpected downtime with friends and family.
“It’s Christmas again?” asked a bewildered 4-year-old, as he peered out the window of his Carlton Terrace home at the fresh-fallen snow. “The kids were happy,” said his mom, Mara Drobinko. “[My son] thought it was a do-over!”
Elton Road resident Kathleen Tubridy shared similar sentiments. “The kids were excited,” she said. Being snowed in was a treat, after the mad scramble leading up to the holidays. “It was nice because we were forced to relax. The kids had some downtime to enjoy their Christmas gifts,” she added.
For those who did venture out, however, they did so on well-plowed roads. “I think we have the best snow-plowing around,” said longtime Stewart Manor resident Peter Bohan. “When I woke up [Monday] morning, all of the roads were clear.”
Bohan lives on a corner property, so he certainly appreciates all of the hard work that goes into snow removal. As he shoveled the sidewalk in front of his home, he admitted to being envious of those who own snow blowers. Referring to a neighbor who lives on the corner diagonal to his, he jokingly said, “Not only did he have a snow blower, but [his snow blower] comes with a ‘house’ attached. He’s probably having a cappuccino in there, [as he pushes his snow blower],” Bohan joked.
While there was no official inch count of snow on record at Stewart Manor Village Hall, there were drifts as high as several feet. Bohan said the snow on the Cambridge Avenue side of his home was up to his waist.
Indeed, the Stewart Manor Department of Public Works, which consists of a crew of only five members, worked tirelessly to remove much of that snow to make the residential roads passable. “I think that, hands down, we have the best crew on Long Island,” attested Cambridge Avenue resident Miriam Velsor. “My in-laws, who live out in Watermill, were visiting relatives nearby on Sunday. They were supposed to head down to Baltimore later on Sunday but [the weather deterred them],” she said. They made their way to Velsor’s home in Stewart Manor, where they planned to spend the night before they continued their journey to Maryland on Monday. “They said the roads in [a neighboring community to the south of Stewart Manor] were horrific, but once they crossed into Stewart Manor, the roads were clear,” she said.
Velsor added that on Monday her relatives had trouble navigating the snow in her driveway, and the Stewart Manor grounds crew stopped, unsolicited, to help dig them out.
“We are extremely pleased with the response of our DPW during the recent blizzard,” said Stewart Manor Mayor James J. Kelly. “They were in on Sunday before the storm, readying the equipment, and worked through the night and into Monday making sure our roads were as clear as possible. They did a fantastic job under very difficult conditions,” Kelly lauded.
Stewart Manor has two snowplows, but one plow was inoperable during most of the storm, according to Rosemarie A. Biehayn, Village Administrator/Clerk Treasurer. Under the direction of department superintendent Jerry Gearrity, the DPW crew used 10 yards of a salt/sand mix on all roads in the village, with the exception of Covert, Stewart and Tulip avenues, which are county roads and are under the jurisdiction of Nassau County, Biehayn said.
As we went to press, the “fab five” was continuing their snow-removal efforts to make sure the village roads remain clear.