Screw guns and table saws have been buzzing at all hours of the day at the Ronald McDonald House in New Hyde Park, working to complete $2.5 million in renovations before its Oct. 10 gala event, which will showcase the updated facility.
Dubbed “Project Design 2013,” 18 of the 42 bedrooms in the 27-year-old building have been stripped and renovated at no cost to the foundation.
To alleviate some of the stress during a child’s illness, the Ronald McDonald House serves more than 1,000 families each year. The house was expanded in 2005 and the 24 rooms that haven’t been renovated have been housing current residents during construction. Any incoming families would be sent to an interim hotel, with the bill footed by the foundation and local sponsors.
Torrential downpours at the kickoff of the 18th Annual New Hyde Park Street Fair nearly crippled the village mainstay. However, sunny skies prevailed at around 12:30 p.m., encouraging fair-goers to emerge from awnings and storefronts on Jericho Turnpike to continue the yearly Saturday tradition.
While the weather initially dampened the footprint of the fair, which stretched west from New Hyde Park Road to Lakeville Road, it didn’t stop attendees from perusing vendors and local shops.
Legendary sports journalist Hal Bock held a book signing at the East Williston Library on Tuesday, Sept. 10, celebrating the release of his ode to a special cartoonist who spent decades making poignant observations and poking good-natured fun at the great American pastime: baseball.
His newest tome, entitled Willard Mulling’s Golden Age of Baseball Drawings 1934-1972, is an ode to a great sports cartoonist and co-worker from his days at the World Telegram and the Sun.
North Hempstead Town Supervisor Jon Kaiman, who has served as town supervisor for 10 years, will leave his position the week of Sept. 23.
“It’s bittersweet, but it’s time to move on,” Kaiman said.
Kaiman will be devoting more time to his new role as a special advisor on Long Island storm recovery to Governor Andrew Cuomo’s New York Rising Community Reconstruction Program. “This will be a full-time job come Sept. 23,” Kaiman said.
The Water Authority of Western Nassau County is expecting to move into to its new New Hyde Park facility by early October, according to officials. Authority reps need to finalize paperwork with the Town of North Hempstead and obtain a certificate of occupancy to move in.
The organization currently operates in Floral Park on South Tyson Avenue. A June move-in date was previously planned.
North Hempstead inspectors met with contractors and water reps last Friday, Sept. 13 for an inspection of fire retardant measures at the 1580 Union Turnpike site. According to North Hempstead spokesman Colin Nash, that’s the last piece to “iron out.”
Long Islanders will be pounding the pavement in East Meadow’s Eisenhower Park on Sept. 22 for a great cause—the 3rd annual “Run for Rob,” a 5K race that hopes to put cancer on the run.
Voices Against Brain Cancer, a volunteer-driven group started in 2005 by the Lichtenstein family after they lost their son Gary to brain cancer, is running the event.
“We raise money for innovative brain cancer research and for programs for patients and their families,” said Executive Director Darren Port.“To date, Voices has raised over $10 million for the cause, and we run support programs in multiple cities and states.”
For Anthony Clark, it all started in a political science class in graduate school at the Appalachian State University in North Carolina in 2003. The Mineola native became fixated with presidential libraries after screening a video of President
Bill Clinton’s last rally on Oct. 31, 1996.
“Clinton said ‘Ya know this is my last campaign,’ and I said no its not,” Clark said. “[His] last campaign is when he builds his library.” Clinton’s library opened in 2004.
Clark, 47, is taking his pet project—10 years in the making—to the Internet for help. On Sept. 2, Clark launched a campaign on Kickstarter.com, a popular crowdfunding platform, to raise money to complete the research for his book,
The Last Campaign: How Presidents Rewrite History, Run for Posterity and Enshrine their Legacies.
At any given moment, one out of every 10 drivers on the streets of New Hyde Park is texting, talking or otherwise engaged with a handheld cellphone. This widespread disregard for the law as well as the safety of our children and neighbors is the startling finding of a study conducted by the New Hyde Park Illustrated News. Earlier this month, our reporters observed 300 cars on New Hyde Park Road at various times of day, and found 42 of the drivers blatantly brandishing their phones.
“It creates such a hazard,” Lakeville Estates Civic Association President Marianna Wohlgemuth said. “I see it all the time. I amazed at how selfish [drivers] are because nothing can be that important to endanger your life. It’s as bad as driving while drunk to me.”
Michelle Vivona remembers being a shy child. The only time she wasn’t was when she was dancing, something she did a lot since her parents owned a dance studio. When she saw how much her already outgoing daughter flourished taking classes at Drama Kids, she wondered how much a program like that would have helped her as a child. So, she and her husband, Jerome, decided to open their own Drama Kids chapter.
“I was so drawn to it from my background in theater and in being such a shy child,” Michelle said. “It’s a safe and a positive place for children to explore and express themselves. It’s wonderful to see the progression in the kids, as both a teacher and parent.”
While this year’s New Hyde Park Street Fair will take place on the first official day of fall, the event keeps the spirit of summer alive a little longer for the 20,000-25,000 attendees.
Organizers are looking to up the ante for the 18th annual event on Saturday, Sept. 21, with the usual clowns and crafts supplemented by a petting zoo and, possibly, an outdoor, one-lane bowling alley on Jericho Turnpike.
“The bowling alley has the potential to be phenomenal,” says Tony Ciuffo, president of Queens-based Craft-A-Fair, which organizes the vendors. “It’ll be right in the street.”
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