Written by Matthew A. Piacentini Friday, 01 July 2011 00:00
There has been a lot going on at the Glen Head-Glenwood Business Association. The GHGWBA meets monthly for cocktails, dinner and a presentation at the Glen Head American Legion Post #336 building. Between meetings, the group is very active in its mission of promoting the interests of local business, encouraging people to shop locally, and making the community a better place to live and work.
Many readers will have noticed new “Welcome to Glen Head” and “Welcome to Glenwood Landing” signs at the borders of the hamlets. The Glen Head-Glenwood Business Association has installed the signs, which were produced by A+ Graphics and Signs of Glen Head. The signs feature the familiar North Shore Schools colors and a graphic of a 19th century locomotive. A key to the history of Glen Head.
The Glen Head signs are at the northern entrance to Glen Head on Glen Cove Avenue and the southern entrance on Glen Cove Avenue.
Board member Irwin Baker told the Record Pilot that the GHGWBA began discussing the need for new welcome signs over a year ago and one of the issues they needed to deal with was: “Why was Glen Head named Glen Head?” Baker said that with help from Merrily Glaviano at the Gold Coast Library and Jarron Jewell at the C.W. Post College Library the answer was found.
“The area we now know as Glen Head was at times called Cedar Swamp, Glenburn and even Glenwood,” he shares. “In the 1860s, the Long Island Railroad established a station near the current railroad station and it came to be known as ‘the head of the rails’ for Glen Cove. The first train, The Fisk [a similar locomotive is seen in the picture provided] first left Glen Head station on Jan. 23, 1865. The hamlet of Glen Head then took its name from being called ‘the head of the rails’ for Glen Cove and thus Glen Head. The name became official in 1874, the year that appears on the sign, when the Glen Head Post Office was established.”
Additionally, on the eastern border of Glenwood Road, a “Welcome to Glenwood Landing” sign has been set up, featuring a steamship graphic. Glenwood Landing was well known for its steamboat landing. Glenwood Landing was in the past named Newark or New Work and even Littleworth. The name Glenwood Landing became official in 1891 when the post office was established, Baker said.
Readers will remember that for many years American flags have been displayed on Memorial Day and throughout the summer. This initiative is also spearheaded by the GHGWBA, with support from American Legion Post #336. In recent years, the Town of Oyster Bay has also supported the effort.
The “avenue of flags,” as it is known, is meant to support the entire community and has won the praise of residents of both Glen Head and Glenwood Landing.
Recently, a larger effort was needed, and the GHGWBA rose to the task. “Unfortunately,” Baker said, “last year we had to remove the brackets which hold the flags as they had become old and unreliable, but, we are committed to displaying the American flag in support of the Glen Head –Glenwood business community as well as to provide this patriotic display for the benefit of all the residents of Glen Head and Glenwood Landing.”
So, because replacing the brackets, flags and adding poles was expensive, the board reached out to members of the GHGWBA as well as to local Glen Head and Glenwood organizations and the business community at large.
“We initiated a ‘Sponsor a Flag’ program,” said Baker, “so that we could again proudly display Old Glory this Memorial Day, Fourth of July, Nassau County Fireman’s Parade & Drill, Labor Day, and this year, the 10th Anniversary of 9-11. Our first step was to find and test brackets, poles and flags for durability, function and appearance. We decided on stainless steel brackets, “spinning poles” and high quality flags. They were purchased from the American Legion Catalog with the help of American Legion Post #336. Then with the help of Scott Dade and his crew from the TOB they were installed before Memorial Day.”
To thank and honor the sponsors, a cocktail party was held at American Legion Post #336 on June 15, which included citations from TOB Councilwoman Elizabeth Faughnan and TOB Deputy Commissioner George Baptista from the Department of Intergovernmental Affairs. (See Page 9 for sponsors.)
In addition to thanking the sponsors, a plaque was presented to Scott Dade and his TOB crew for their ongoing support of this important project.
“The Glen Head Glenwood Business Association is committed to supporting the Glen Head Glenwood community and is honored to play a part in assuring Old Glory will always be respectfully displayed,” Baker said.
Assemblyman Michael Montesano paid a visit to the GHGWBA, meeting with his constituents (and fellow Glen Head residents) and speaking to the concerns of local business people at a recent dinner. He took a lot of questions and helped shed some light on the environment in Albany as well as his goals to curb tax increases and lower government spending.
He said that when people call the state Legislature “dysfunctional,” they should know that “a lot of us do our work.” Montesano said that a few leaders can hold up or control the progress on certain issues while individual legislators are showing up and putting in the hours for their district.
While he said that “everything is a battle,” with very different concerns voiced by Long Island, New York City and the upstate region, Montesano said that the new governor, Andrew Cuomo is very bi-partisan, pushing for real productive gains in the state’s government. “He’s very involved. He interacts with all of us. He doesn’t care about party,” he said.
Montesano said he was impressed by Cuomo’s work on the state budget. “He made it clear he wasn’t raising taxes… no fees, no borrowing… and he wouldn’t tolerate a delay,” he shared.
Those present at the dinner voiced one main concern: taxes. Montesano said that taxes are driven in large part by schools. A former North Shore Board of Education president and trustee, he said he supported mandate relief and other legislation to lower school budgets – there are 65 mandates that affect the schools, the assemblyman noted.
Montesano continued saying that teachers’ contracts should be altered to reduce costs or to get more for the money from staff. He said he agreed with the governor’s proposal to cap superintendents’ salaries. He recommended cutting some classes that are not needed, such as aviation, which he cut during his time on the board. “They say it’s for the kids, but what is actually needed?” Montesano asked regarding educational programs that could be cut to lower the budget.
In closing, the assemblyman encouraged people to “stay informed” on all the New York State issues that affect their lives and businesses. He urged people to check the Assembly website to see what he and others are up to.
“Come to Albany,” he added. “People from the city know how to be heard,” he said, encouraging his district to be vocal and fight for its concerns too. “Make the noise. Make the issues known.”