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Community Garden Springs Into Action

It seemed like it would never come, but spring is finally here. The sun’s out a little longer, the days are getting warmer and the showers promise blooming flowers in weeks ahead.  

Another telltale sign that spring has finally sprung in Hicksville is the opening of the community garden. An outreach of Trinity Lutheran Church, this garden has been both maintained by, and served, the local community since 2011.  

“We might be from one church and school, but we’re looking to get the whole community involved,” said coordinator Melissa Valencia. “We want the whole community to come work here with us.”

The community garden is aptly named. It’s maintained by community members, and the fruits (or vegetables) of their labor go towards helping other community members in need. Anyone is welcome to volunteer at the property, regardless of religious affiliation, age, gardening experience, or any other factor.  All the produce that is grown is donated right back to the community through various food pantries.

“We’re trying to help people who need help in the most basic way,” Valencia said. “Come here one day and harvest food that’s going to feed someone that very day. You’re directly impacting someone’s life.”

“You have to start small and help the people you live with,” she continued. “Once you take care of those people you can reach out even further.”

The garden, which is located at 46 W. Cherry St., has 33 raised beds and is hoping to expand in the next couple of years. This past Saturday, volunteers of all ages from Westbury, Massapequa and Hicksville got the garden ready for the new season and planted cabbage, lettuce, pea, beet and radish seeds for the first harvest. Come late April, they will start planting seeds for warm weather plants such as tomatoes and peppers. Volunteers are continually harvesting and planting new seeds throughout the whole season.

Valencia says there are several of ways people can get involved with the garden and that no experience is necessary, it’s just basic gardening.  

“Once you get those seeds in the ground, it’s just keeping it weeded and watered and keeping an eye out for any problems,” she said.

Problems, which for many gardeners can mean critters like raccoons, squirrels and rabbits. But Valencia says they haven’t had any issues with animals or insects, which has also allowed the garden to avoid using any pesticides.

Meredith Canavor from Hicksville has been helping at the garden since its inception and was at the workday on Saturday with her son. She says she enjoys being able to work alongside her community members while doing something she loves so much.

“I love it because we get to partner with the town and other churches and the community,” Canavor said. “It’s such a great experience because you’re doing something positive. Especially after a cold winter, there’s nothing better than putting your hands in the soil, it makes you feel so well connected.”

Starting April 7 and going through November, the garden’s workdays are every Monday from 6:30 until dark, and the first and third Saturday of every month from 9 a.m. to noon. For more information, contact Valencia at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

News

Local veterans groups and residents gathered at Hicksville Middle School Veterans Memorial Park recently to honor brave servicemen and woman, past and present. William M. Gouse Jr. Post 3211 hosted Hicksville’s annual Veterans Day ceremony on Nov. 11.

The ceremonies began with the pledge and national anthem sung by Hicksville High School student Cassie Pursoo, accompanied by trumpeter Conner Hoelzer. Monsignor Thomas Costa from Our Lady of Church in Hicksville gave the invocation.

On Nov. 10, a dedication ceremony was held to celebrate the completion of a beautiful new two-story house in Hicksville. However, while new dwellings are an ordinary occurrence on Long Island, this one was unique and special in a way that very few are.

The house at 77 Thorman Ave. was built in memory of Navy Lieutenant and posthumous Congressional Medal of Honor recipient Michael P. Murphy, a Long Island native who tragically died in combat while serving in Afghanistan in 2005. However, this house represents more than just the dedicated service of a man to his country; it represents the beginning of a new life full of hope for a brother-in-arms and his family as well.


Sports

Football was Mike Torrellas’ heart and soul. He also liked a good Turkey Bowl.  

Unfortunately, the Hicksville Crusaders co-founder wasn’t able to witness the program’s inaugural event, which took place Saturday, Nov. 8.

Torrellas passed away suddenly last December due to a blood clot, but the spirit and drive of the man who wore the number 53 and tragically passed at that age still surrounds the Crusaders football program.

The Long Island Fight for Charity will be hosting its 11th annual Charity Boxing Event on Nov. 24 at the Hilton in Melville. Among the 20 volunteers putting up their fists for funds will be Hicksville business owner Mell Goldman, who will be fighting under the nickname “The Kid.”  

Goldman is the President of All Boro Cleaning Services. He stated that he was enticed at the opportunity and wanted to contribute to charity.


Calendar

Fall Drama Production

November 20-22

Blood Drive

November 24

Christmas Holiday Fair

November 24



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