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‘New’ PAL Clubhouse Coming In January 2013

Town of North Hempstead Supervisor Jon Kaiman and Councilwoman Lee Seeman joined forces with State Senator Jack Martins and Nassau County Legislator Richard Nicolello recently to break ground on a long-awaited reconstruction project to restore the New Hyde Park Police Athletic League clubhouse to its former glory.

This kickoff of the renovation project, which was also attended by PAL officials, Nassau County Police Officer Kevin Worth, and Sgt. Doug Kenah, heralded the start of a project that had been hampered by a lack of funds and had consequently languished for over seven years.

Supervisor Kaiman worked alongside Officer Worth, the director of the New Hyde Park PAL program, and other PAL officials to get the gym restored. The town, which owns the Denton Avenue property the PAL facility occupies, approved plans for the renovations.

“I am pleased that this facility, a place where tens of hundreds of children—including my own—from throughout the town have come for decades to play basketball and other sports will soon be up and running again,” Supervisor Kaiman said during the gathering.

Problems with the PAL clubhouse were triggered by flooding when a heavy rainstorm in October 2005 caused an overflow from a sump behind the facility. Water was pushed under the eight-inch concrete block supporting the gym floor, cracking the existing floor. The gym floor was restored with $135,000 from an insurance claim. Officials stated however that the repair work wasn’t sufficient to withstand a July 2007 rainstorm, which caused the gym floor to buckle once again.

A $200,000 state grant promised by former state Sen. Craig Johnson to conduct repairs to the clubhouse was withdrawn by the Democratic State Senate leadership after Johnson lost his re-election bid in the 7th Senatorial District to Republican challenger Jack Martins.

The reconstruction plans call for demolishing the concrete slab and installing new drainage and floor, as well as repaving the adjacent parking area. The project is expected to be completed in January 2013 depending on weather, officials said.

“This is a wonderful thing that PAL does, giving kids from all across the town the opportunity to participate in a variety of sports,” said Councilwoman Seeman. “It took a long time and a lot of collaboration, but finally this place will live again. I’m proud of the efforts of all who helped to make this possible.”

News

The Village of New Hyde Park will soon hear Manhattan businessman Sam Chan’s proposal to open a 84-seat hibachi-style restaurant at 1215 Jericho Tpke. in New Hyde Park, the former spot of the maligned Empire Billiards Hall. The hearing is set for Tuesday, Sept. 16 at 7:30 p.m.

“The board will be hearing the case for restaurant usage,” Mayor Robert Lofaro said. “This will also have to go before the zoning board. They will likely hear the case.”

A fatal car accident on Tuesday, Aug. 19 that claimed the life of a 55-year-old man on Covert Avenue in New Hyde Park could fast-track a $250,000 Nassau County project announced last month to install traffic calming features along the road. The project would run north from Jericho Turnpike in New Hyde Park, south to Hempstead Turnpike in Elmont.

“The project is already ongoing and will continue to progress,” said Nassau County Department of Public Works rep Michael Martino.


Sports

New York Mets pitcher Zack Wheeler and catcher Travis d’Arnaud brightened the day for some patients at Cohen Children’s Medical Center last week in New Hyde Park, posing for pictures and handing out gifts and autographs. The players hung out with the kids in the afternoon, playing video games and answering questions.

They also found the time to make the rounds, stopping by bedsides to spread some cheer. Mr. Met also joined the tour and was a big hit with the children, who peppered him with questions about everything from his four-fingered hand to the whereabouts of the missing Mrs. Met.

The Sewanhaka Indians football team has a season of change in store.

The Indians have moved up from Conference III to Conference II, due to an increase in enrollment, and are set to face teams that they have never seen before, according to head coach George Kasimatis.

“It is hard to gauge where we will be in this conference,” he said. “There is a lot of uncertainty as where we fit in.”


Calendar

Library Board Meeting

Thursday, Aug. 28

Welcome Reception

Wednesday, Sept. 3

Herricks School Meeting

Thursday, Sept. 4



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