I would like to extend my personal thank you and deep gratitude to everyone who came to the Earthfest and Earth Run at the Tanners Pond Environmental Center on Sunday, April 21 to celebrate not just Earth Day and the start of National Volunteer Week, but to join everyone in recognition of the value volunteers have made to the community and environment. By far, this was the most successful, professional, fun, and inspiring event since starting a small grassroots program in 1995. Over the next few weeks, there will be articles on the individual activities, but the 9-acre nature area in Garden City is no longer a hidden secret. It is a valuable asset for Garden City and Long Island’s people and wildlife. Yes, the site wound up damaged by Hurricane Sandy. But the spirit of volunteerism that blossomed in the community during that tough time of downed trees and power outages led to an awareness of the importance of volunteering as neighbors and as a community.
With spring having finally arrived, the one sport that’s gotten a lot of love out of the gate, at least in the past few weeks, is running. Last month, Jack Aneser, a Boy Scout with Garden City’s Troop 55, hosted the First Annual Eagle Run 5K charity road race at Adelphi University as the basis for his Eagle Scout project. Net race proceeds benefited the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. This past Saturday, the Garden City Teacher’s Association conducted a 5K Run/Walk and a 1.5 Mile Fun Run/Walk for Charity (Garden City for a Cure) and raised money to benefit the Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. And for those still looking to run, the Garden City Bird Sanctuary held its Second Annual Race-Earth Run II the following day. And as Garden City Life sportswriter Ed Rotondo pointed out in his story this week, both the Garden City High School boys and girls track teams have already started running roughshod, (no pun intended), over their competitors. It’s enough to want to make you get up off the couch, lace on a pair of running shoes and hit the pavement or local track.
– Dave Gil de Rubio
In today’s climate of ever-shrinking funding, hard decisions need to be made in order to balance the school budget. As you consider where to make cuts and what programs to eliminate, please consider the following information about school library programs and school librarians.
While all school libraries are important, we believe that school libraries, especially elementary school libraries, and certified school librarians to staff them, are needed now more than ever. As you know, elementary school provides the basis upon which all further education is built. A strong school library program in elementary school will result in the future success of your students as they move toward college and careers.
There are few things that reverberate in a Rockwellian way like Little League baseball, particularly the pomp and pageantry that is Opening Day. Like other Little League-related organizations around the country, the Garden City Athletic Association (GCAA) hosts a parade where all the league’s players get to march in solidarity with their teams. Every year it winds up being a communal all-ages event for everyone from adults still wistfully thinking about their baseball experiences while watching their children go through it themselves to five-year-olds in the Rookie League just starting out down this athletic path. While competition and sportsmanship are fostered on the way towards squads making the playoffs and hopefully winning a championship, it’s the journey that’s hopefully a fun one that will wind up being the stuff of cherished memories for so many of these kids.
– Dave Gil de Rubio
Village Pool Applications Mailed
Earlier this week, the Garden City Recreation Department mailed their Splash newsletter, which includes the 2013 pool application. If you have not received the newsletter/application, please call the recreation office at 516-465-4075.
Shop And Dine In Garden City - Support The Local Merchants
Please do your part to support all businesses within Garden City, which includes Seventh Street, Franklin Avenue and New Hyde Park Road. I also encourage all residents and professionals within Garden City to shop locally. Your patronage will be appreciated and is needed.
On behalf of my fellow trustees, I want to thank those residents who took the time to vote in our village election. We look forward to the privilege of serving you in the upcoming year and I welcome the honor and challenge of being mayor. I believe the board will be able to accomplish much by working together and working with residents, village staff and the business community.
I also want to thank our outgoing mayor, Donald Brudie, for his years of service to our village as mayor, trustee and CPOA representative and to his gracious wife, Barbara, for sharing him with us.
Like much of the country, the Village of Garden City has plenty to contend with, given the current economic climate. And while things seem to slowly be turning in the right direction, it doesn’t mitigate the fact that rising pension costs and property taxes are proving to be quite the burden, particularly in Nassau County. Like other villages, Garden City is also contending with weathering the proposed budgets for its respective municipality and school district. Throw in the ongoing saga that is St. Paul’s and the never ending battle for the almighty dollar that local merchants are waging with big box retailers that lie beyond the village’s boundaries, and it’s safe to say that Mayor John Watras and new trustees Bolebruch and Richard Silver, along with the returning board members, have their work cut out for them. With that said, the Garden City Life would like to congratulate and wish the best of luck to the newest elected officials and returning trustees going forward.
– Dave Gil de Rubio
Benjamin Franklin once said, “Energy and persistence conquer all things,” and when it comes to Garden City Athletic Association (GCAA) 3rd-grade boys travel, that was certainly the case. From November through March, the 10-man squad held practices, alternating with game days. The result? The GCAA 3 rd-grade boys travel team wound up securing the Island Garden Super League championship. On the way to beating out 15 other travel/tryout-caliber squads in their division, the GCAA champs wound up playing against fourth-grade teams towards the end of its season. Once the dust settled, GCAA defeated a Syosset team that had a better regular season record but were unable to rally past the 30-29 final score the game wound up being. Add another prize to the Village of Garden City athletic program trophy case.
– Dave Gil de Rubio
In compliance with the term limit provision of our revered Community Agreement, my term as mayor ended on April 1. It has been both an honor and privilege to serve the residents of Garden City in the capacity of mayor during the past two years.
When a mayor assumes office, he has no idea what challenges lie ahead. As of this writing, and in advance of this year’s budget sessions, the trustees voted to lay off paid firefighters and are now considering additional employee layoffs. Never in the history of this great village have we sacrificed our labor force to meet our budget needs by means other than attrition. My feeling has been that cuts must be achieved in ways that do not affect the safety of our community, services to our residents, and the quality of life we have come to know and expect, however, I am still optimistic that these layoffs can be averted.
Garden City Public Schools Board of Education adopted the 2013-14 Budget calendar at last month’s regular meeting. The board and district administration encourage Garden City residents to attend its public meetings to offer input during the budget formulation process and to gain an understanding of budget challenges as the district enters its second year under the state’s tax levy limit cap mandate.
All meetings are held at Garden City High School at 8:15 p.m.
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