Written by Margaret Whitely Friday, 09 December 2011 00:00
On a relatively balmy Saturday afternoon for December, New Hyde Park Village residents gathered at Marcus Christ Hall to hold its annual children’s magic show performed by The Great Bellini, otherwise known as John Bellon, Jr. followed by the traditional tree lighting ceremony. The entire event was sponsored by State Bank of Long Island and New Hyde Park Branch Manager Richard DeMartino and State Bank First VP, Mary Durkin of New Hyde Park, were on hand to take part in the festivities.
Prior to the tree lighting, both the New Hyde Park Memorial Orchestra, under the direction of Noel Monat and the Memorial Show Choir, under the direction of Robert McKinnon performed at Marcus Christ. In the past both these groups have performed outside but it was the feeling of New Hyde Park Mayor Daniel Petruccio that it was much more effective, and warmer, to have the groups perform inside prior to the tree lighting.
All in all it was a wonderful event filled with the happiness of the Christmas spirit.
On another relatively balmy evening, the folks of Williston Park packed the village lawn to prepare for the lighting of the tree.
However, prior to that the Daisy and the Brownie Scouts from Troop Nos. 1832 and 1591 gathered to sing some of the traditional Christmas carols and were backed up by the Searingtown School orchestra.
Just prior to lighting the tree, Williston Park Mayor Paul Ehrbar went through the crowd and found a young boy, Matthew Gavagan, and asked him to come forward and pull the switch to actually light the tree.
Needless to say Matthew was thrilled to be this year’s “tree lighter.”
Those on the packed lawn then waited for the firetrucks to come roaring up Willis Avenue with Santa atop, turning the corner, turning at the firehouse and stopping for Santa to greet all the boys and girls with cookies and good wishes.