Anton Community Newspapers  •  132 East 2nd Street  •  Mineola, NY 11501  •  Phone: 516-747-8282  •  FAX: 516-742-5867
Attention: open in a new window. PDFPrintE-mail

Local Wins Achievement Award

For Terry Fontana, winning the United States Tennis Assosciation Eastern’s Lifetime Achievement Award was over 50 years in the making and is a dream come true.

A crowning achievement for the Hicksville resident, Fontana owes her involvement and recognition in tennis to the support of her colleagues and friends. “I have worked with so many people in this section,” said Fontana. “They have helped me achieve this.”

Since first playing in her mid-twenties, Fontana has been a stalwart supporter of tennis through her various volunteer roles. In 1956, she first picked up a racket and soon after, it became her life’s passion.

Before learning more about the tennis community, Fontana joked that she didn’t know indoor facilities existed. “I remember shoveling snow off tennis courts outdoors so I could go out and play because I wasn’t aware of indoor tennis clubs,” she said. “Tennis was not something that I grew up with.” She ended up working at indoor facilities for years after.

As her tennis IQ increased, it became her mission to help countless others succeed in the sport. To name a few of her earliest projects, Fontana founded the Matinecock Racquet Club. She also managed Valley Tennis of Manhasset and eventually moved to Arizona for more tennis opportunities.

Fontana said 1989 proved to be a defining year as she first became involved in USTA projects, including joining the Long Island Region Board once back in New York from Arizona.

Fontana earned the Eastern Volunteer of the Year Award in 1992. In addition, she started the first community tennis association in Long Island during the 90s and helped bring tennis into the Hicksville School District.

In 1995, Fontana honored former professional player Vitas Gerulaitis by organizing the Vitas Gerulaitis Long Island Championships. Through her work, she raised over $13,000 in scholarships and $2,000 in contributions for deserving juniors.

By working tirelessly to support Jr. Team Tennis programs on Long Island, Fontana received the region’s most prestigious honor: the Hy Zausner Lifetime Achievement Award in 2000. Three years later, she accepted the Long Island Volunteer of the Year Award for her efforts.

Over the last decade, Fontana has worked selflessly to support the growth of tennis. Most recently, and earlier in 2013, Long Island honored with the Vitas Gerulatis For The Love of Tennis Award at their Annual Dinner.

About her latest — and largest — accolade, Terry said, “I’m just so proud. I really am. But never in my life did I dream that I would get a Lifetime Achievement Award from the section. Honestly, it’s just so wonderful.”

News

Many would consider it rude to play with your food. That is unless, you’re participating in the Long Island Potato Festival. The event, which was held in Cutchogue, NY, included a mashed potato sculpting contest which was dominated by Hicksville’s Sarah Tsang, who won first place in the youth division.

Contestants were allowed to use any tools and materials to help bring their creation to life. Sculptures were left on display throughout the day and voted on by festival goers.

Some students returning to school the first day might see a new face on the bus: Hicksville’s new interim superintendent Dr. Carl Bonuso.

“Every year on the first day of school I ride one of the buses. To see the face of a kindergartener on that first ride just reminds you of why you’re in the field,” he says.


Sports

Somehow LSA, the Levittown Swimming Association, has always been a part of our Hicksville summers. My family’s introduction to the organization in 1975 began when our two older daughters tried out for the Parkway Swim Team, one of the nine teams that competed through July and most of August.

It was no small task for the younger girl, swimming her first full lap in the deep end of the pool to qualify at age six, but both girls made the team and donned the coveted gray tee shirts as the trees cast their shadows over the pool water at the end of practice.

I’m convinced that the soul and the center of Hicksville is Cantiague Park. And why not? Every weekend it’s a beehive of activity ranging from tennis matches, hand ball games, basketball and baseball games, swimming, hockey and of course ‘the beautiful game’ called soccer. Cantiague has two professional soccer fields that are perfectly manicured and begging to be played on. And they were. This weekend was the finals of the East Meadow Soccer Tournament which is one of the largest youth soccer tournaments in the nation, sponsored by the US Soccer Federation. There were 18 boys and girls teams in the finals and a large staff of referees.

Two of the refs were Steven Orozco and Randy Vogt who told me how soccer had been growing and has now become the second most popular participation sport in America with 25 million of us watching this year’s World Cup.  I also met and interviewed Joe Codispoti who along with Tim Bradbury is the head coach of Rockville Centre United, a U16 boys club.  This U16 team has a group of standout players led by  Jack Graziano, AJ Codispoti and Pat Basile who have been playing together for six years.


Calendar

Close Encounters with Benevolent ETs and Ascended Masters

August 29

Adventures in Genealogy

September 4

Greek Festival

September 5-7



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