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Second Annual Run For Rob To Honor Dr. David Chalif

Event at Bethpage State Park on Oct. 28 seeks to raise $100,000 for brain cancer research

After last year’s successful inaugural event, the 2nd Annual 5K Run For Rob, which raises funds for brain cancer research, is coming up on Sunday, Oct. 28. This year, organizers of the event at Bethpage State Park seek to raise $100,000 for Voices Against Brain Cancer in memory of Dr. Robert Bernstein of Brookville, a beloved family man, coach and OB-GYN who lost his battle with the disease in June 2010.

Dr. David Chalif, chief of neurovascular neurosurgery and co-director of the NSUH Brain Aneurysm Center at North Shore Long Island Jewish Hospital in Manhasset, will be awarded the 2012 Robert Bernstein Humanitarian Award at the event. Chalif, who saw Bernstein as a patient, said that despite a lot of medical progress over the course of his career, particularly in digital imaging techniques, the prognosis for patients with this often aggressive cancer is sobering.

“The treatment of brain tumors has made major advances, and the understanding of brain tumors has really entered a new phase. However, the survival from malignant brain tumors is still a very disappointing number to both neurosurgeons and families,” said Chalif, going on to say that the survival rate for patients with brain tumors hasn’t much improved from several decades ago. The neurosurgeon went on to say that in his opinion, the person who goes on to win a Nobel Prize in the neurosciences will be someone who makes a breakthrough that makes a significant statistical difference in that survival rate.

Like many in the field, Chalif hopes that if the current research—some of which is even being done at North Shore LIJ—leads to a new understanding of brain cancer, there could come a day when a once aggressive, malignant brain tumor could perhaps go into remission for a decade…or two.

“When that day comes, that will be a major breakthrough, and we have not yet come to that point,” said Chalif.

Chalif credits Dr. Michael Schulder, who will also be honored at the Run For Rob, and Dr. Mark Symons, Ph.D at North Shore LIJ, for doing the kind of research that could lead to a critical breakthrough in brain tumor treatment. Symons is currently researching how tumors move and invade.

As of this writing, 17 teams of participants have registered for this year’s Run For Rob, and the event has already raised over $30,000 for brain cancer research. In addition to Chalif, the event will also honor Michael Schulder, M.D., FAANS, vice chairman, department of neurosurgery and director, Brain Tumor Center at the Cushing Neuroscience Institute; Margot Miller; Jason DiCarlo; Jeffrey Treuman; Gary Goldberg; Ginny Bautz; Fatemeh Zanjanian-Tehrani and Cheryl Stasky.

“It’s the type of thing, getting a brain tumor, that frequently comes out of nowhere, and that was the case for Dr. Bernstein,” said Chalif, noting that people aren’t as aware of brain cancer as many other diseases, yet it still affects tens of thousands of people. However, he sees events like Run For Rob as a step in the right direction: raising awareness about the disease, while also helping to make people aware of the exciting potential benefits of funding cutting edge cancer research; there could be an incredible breakthrough just around the corner.

The 2nd Annual Run for Rob will be held at 99 Quaker Meeting House Road at Bethpage State Park in Farmingdale on Sunday, Oct. 28. Registration beings at 9 a.m., and the run/walk will begin at 9:45 a.m. Members of the community are invited to form teams, or join an existing team, in order to raise funds for brain cancer research in Dr. Bernstein’s memory. To connect with an existing team or start your own, visit www.voicesinmotion.org/runforrob.

News

A clown named Renaldo performed magic tricks for an enthusiastic audience as part of the National Circus Project, which visited Levittown Public Library on Wednesday, July 16.

 

All 150 tickets available for the performance were sold out in this interactive magic show for children. Throughout the entire circus act, children laughed and raised their hands as high as they could to be chosen as one of Renaldo’s helpers.

 

Raising her hand to participate was three-year-old Kirsten Cantwell from Seaford. “She was upset that she didn’t get picked,” said her mother Melissa Cantwell.

 

Kirsten Cantwell goes to any activity offered at the library, and is starting to enjoy watching magic shows. According to her mother, she really enjoyed the performance.

 

In the circus show, National Circus Project performer, Al Calienes, acted as Renaldo the clown.

 

“The show has different components of acts in the circus,” explained Calienes. “We teach children circus moves.”

 

With the National Circus Project, children get to see magic tricks performed live. “We infuse enthusiasm by showing them, and they in turn will be able to repeat the process,” said Calienes.

Renaldo performed plate spinning, where he spun a plate on a stick and passed it along to the stick of one of his helpers from the audience, who then passed the plate down a line of three more helpers. This interactive way of teaching the children magic tricks really allows them to absorb what they are learning.

 

The National Circus Project travels and performs for elementary schools, as well as middle and high schools. When the National Circus Project is not going to schools, they perform at library shows, summer camps, and other types of events.

 

The performance entertains the adults as well as the children. “We involve everybody,” said Calienes. “Everybody’s engaged on some level or another. “

 

At every library performance, Calienes donates the children’s book he wrote and illustrated Renaldo Joins the Circus to the library. He feels that he owes a lot to the library system. “Anything that ever meant anything to me I learned in the library,” said Calienes.

 

Calienes learned how to draw from the library, which is how he became a commercial artist. One of the main characters he would always draw would be Renaldo the clown. “I wanted to make him real so I joined the circus,” he said.

 

Calienes has been performing with the National Circus Project for seven years and has been in the circus business going on 26 years.

 

The National Circus Project brings magic to children at any school, camp or library all over Long Island as well as across the country.

 

Last June, Nassau County passed legislation that allows for the deployment of a speed enforcement camera system in school zones for each of the 56 public school districts in the county. 

 

The new systems will be implemented throughout the county on July 25, and will be operational on scheduled school days throughout the year. 


Sports

Levittown’s Division Avenue High School varsity baseball team, under the direction of coach Tom Tuttle, won the Class A County Championship, garnering a third-place ranking in New York State. This is the team’s 13th county championship win and the second county championship for the school in the past four years.

 

In addition, senior Chris Reilly was named Championship MVP for throwing a complete game shutout in game two and going three for four with two RBIs. 

Taylor Traenkle, a junior at Division Avenue High School recently received the MVP award for the Nassau County Varsity Hockey League Association.

 

Traenkle, who plays no. 9 for the Levittown Ice Falcons, led the way averaging 2.8 points a game with a total of 25 goals and 23 assists in just 17 games. 


Calendar

Lazy Days Of Summer - July 26

Flea Market - July 27

Darlene Prince and the Bragg Hollow Band - July 28


Columns

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

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com