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Keep Running For Katie In New Hyde Park

With the return of warmer weather comes the return of runners to the streets, especially those a part of Katie’s Run, an annual 5K race in New Hyde Park.

 

Rain or shine, the June 22 event, now in its fifth year, will benefit the Ronald McDonald House of Long Island on behalf of The Katie McBride Foundation, a nonprofit organization aiming to promote and fundraise for the house. Festivities besides the timed race include a two-mile walk as well as a post-race celebration in New Hyde Park Memorial Park, which includes a free barbeque, an awards ceremony, family entertainment and a Children’s Fun Run with a visit from Ronald McDonald.

 

But of course the day is about more than merely running and burgers. On her 11th birthday in June 2007, Katie McBride was diagnosed with Burkitt’s Lymphoma after waking up one morning with a scratchy voice just days before.

 

“Once [the doctor] looked down her throat I knew it was going to be trouble just based on the way his face looked,” Katie’s father, Michael, said.

 

By September, after months of chemotherapy, Katie was in remission and happy to be back at school. However, this period was short lived when the disease entered her bone marrow three weeks later. Despite a transplant from her older brother Mike, Katie passed away on March 1, 2008. 

 

The foundation, founded by Michael Sr. and his wife, Jeanne, was formed in 2010 out of McBride’s fear of Katie becoming forgotten.

 

“Certainly not within our family and immediate friends, but I kind of got a little bit of an anxiety attack and it was like ‘This little girl is just going to fade, her memory is just going to fade and everybody is just going to forget her,’” he said. “That’s just the society we live in.”

 

Although the organization now also gives academic scholarships to Chaminade and Islip High School grads, the Ronald McDonald House was chosen as the prime beneficiary. 

“[Jeanne] lived in the hospital room with Katie,” McBride said. “The Ronald McDonald House afforded her the ability to go over and shower in the morning and grab a meal here and there.”

Since 2010, the foundation has been able to donate about $54,000 in proceeds from the race to the McDonald House. The charity also has donated an additional $40,000 to support families facing challenges similar to those of the McBrides. Last year, the 5K and community walk had an estimated 800 finishers, according to McBride. 

 

Tom Biggers, the race director and president of the New York Police Department Running Club, said in the past the neighborhood has helped to make his job easier. 

 

“I manage quite a few races and this is by far the number one race in both the volunteer, community participation,” said Biggers, who has directed the race for the last five years. “Our volunteer staff [is] the same people every year, doing the same job. For me it’s an easy race to direct because we have such great community support.

 

Festivities begin on June 20 at the New Hyde Park Fire Department on Jericho Turnpike, at the pasta and beer party where runners pick up their packets. The race then starts at 9 a.m. on Sunday, June 22 at the New Hyde Park Funeral Home on Lakeville Road and ends at the New

Hyde Park Memorial Park on Albert Street and Lincoln Avenue.

 

With fingers crossed for good weather, McBride said the Children’s Fun Run is usually his favorite part of the day.

 

“Just the smiles and the joy on the faces of the kids,” he said, “that’s exactly what I think Katie would have appreciated the most.”


News

New Hyde Park Village trustee Donald Barbieri contends helicopters are still flying right over New Hyde Park and other residential parts of the north shore, harming citizens and the town with excessive and unlawful aircraft noise. In spite of what federal law says and in spite of what a federal court says, the noise levels are still an issue.

 

Barbieri drafted a letter to the Federal Aviation Administration, apprising the entity of New Hyde Park’s situation. The FAA did not return calls for comment.

Operation Main Street, a plan that would see a section of Jericho Turnpike in New Hyde Park revamped with traffic calming features and aesthetic updates, is finally in the home stretch, New Hyde Park village officials say. Village contractor J. Anthony Enterprises will be putting the finishing touches on the $1.46 million project this week.

 

“It’s all but finished,” trustee Donald Barbieri said. “Honestly, I feel good. It’s looking solid. It took forever to get it done. They’re going to put more benches in and plantings; striping the road.”

 

New Hyde Park’s department of public works will maintain the planters and medians installed for the project. Twenty-five potted plants were recently installed along the turnpike, officials stated. More than 10 benches will be available on the turnpike.


Sports

 Students at Charles Water Karate & Fitness, located at 122 Hillside Avenue in Williston Park recently received belt promotions after successfully completing a series of extensive exams.

 

“Our goal at Charles Water Karate & Fitness is to facilitate mental growth enabling our students to reach their highest potential as human beings,” says Charles Water, owner and director of the school.

“Our studio teaches students how to defend themselves responsibly while instilling self-confidence, self-discipline and respect for others.”

Runners and walkers from New Hyde Park are invited to join in the fun on one of the most unusual 5K courses on Long Island at the Saturday, Aug. 9 Sands Point Sprint.

 

 The run presents the Long Island running community with an opportunity to traverse a unique combination of paved paths and runner-friendly woodland trails at the Sands Point Preserve. 

 

The August 2013 edition of the Sands Point Sprint attracted 313 finishers, including top New Hyde Park finishers Michael Ringel, who scored first in the 11-14 age group and Dave Frisone, who earned first place honors in the 65-69 age group. Race organizers are looking for both Ringel and Frisone, and a host of other New Hyde Park runners, to be back next week.


Calendar

Literary Club - July 30

Boot Camp - August 2

Six Gun Concert - August 3 


Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
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Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
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