Written by The Levittown Tribune Staff Thursday, 10 April 2014 00:00
An international soccer conference featuring the legendary Pelé is coming to the local area. Soccer as the Beautiful Game: Football’s Artistry, Identity and Politics is at Hofstra University in Hempstead through April 13.
“Pelé transformed and transcended the game of soccer,” said Hofstra President Stuart Rabinowitz. “While the world first came to know him for extraordinary athletic feats, his soccer career was, in many respects, simply a prelude to an extraordinary life of service as a philanthropist and advocate. He understands the power and responsibility his soccer legacy carries, and has used it to improve the lives of others.”
Members of the Long Island Junior Soccer League are invited to join the conference as a guest and at no charge on Saturday, April 12 at Hofstra University. Panels and discussions on Saturday will include experts in coaching, leagues and sports media and were designed with the soccer enthusiast in mind.
Visit the conference website at www.hofstra.edu/soccercon to see the panels for Saturday.
Representing the soccer world on Saturday will be Football Scholars Forum, dedicated philanthropic organizations, distinguished soccer journalists from the New York Times and Sports Illustrated, the former general manager of the New York Red Bulls Jerome de Bontin, and Cosmos COO Erik Stover.
On Friday, April 11 at 3 p.m., Pelé will receive an honorary degree from Hofstra for his humanitarian work and contributions to the sport. U.S. Soccer President Sunil Gulati will make remarks about the state of the game at 7 p.m. There are more than 100 speakers from Argentina to Zimbabwe, but many contributions will come from members of the Long Island Junior Soccer League.
Josefa Pace, who grew up playing for the East Meadow Hot Shots and the Oceanside Express of the Long Island Junior Soccer League (LIJSL) and is the author of Shifts in Soccer Positionality: An International Symbol for Opportunity, Gender Equality and Peace, is a panelist of Gender, Poverty and the Public Good on Thursday, April 10 from 4:30 to 6:15 p.m.
On Saturday, April 12 from 2:45 to 4:30 p.m., the Coaches, Practictioners, Trainers Round Table features experts from Eastern New York including former U.S. men’s National Team player Chris Armas, who grew up playing for the LIJSL’s Brentwood Bandits and
Hewlett/Lawrence Big Blue, plus with Eastern New York’s Olympic Development Program; Hofstra men’s soccer coaches Richard Nuttall, Gary Book and Ronan Wiseman, who all also coach LIJSL teams; Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association Public Relations
Director Randy Vogt, who has officiated over 8,000 games; and Long Island Soccer Football League (LISFL) President Gus Xikis.
At the same time, the Soccer Journalists Round Table will be held and features Soccer Long Island Magazine Publisher Kevin McCrudden, who grew up playing for the LIJSL’s Northport/Cow Harbor United and Smithtown Kickers; and esteemed journalists Michael Lewis and George Vecsey, who have covered the local soccer scene for decades.
Then on Sunday, April 13 from 1 to 2:45 p.m., a youth soccer clinic organized by the Hofstra men’s and women’s soccer programs with the assistance of the LIJSL and LISFL will be held. At 3 p.m., there’s an unveiling of a commemorative plaque of Pelé and then at 5 p.m., the 2013 North American Soccer League champion New York Cosmos begin their title defense when they take on the Atlanta Silverbacks.
Saturday, 26 July 2014 00:00
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.
Friday, 25 July 2014 00:00
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.
Thursday, 24 July 2014 00:00
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.
Thursday, 24 July 2014 00:00
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.