Written by Joe Scotchie: email@example.com Friday, 13 April 2012 00:00
With its third anniversary coming this fall, Drug Free Massapequa (DFM) will hold a Tribute Concert on Saturday, April 21, one that will honor State Assemblyman Joseph Saladino, as DFM takes stock of its past and looks toward the future.
“Progress is great,” said Janice Talento, president and CEO of DFM, while adding that the organization is still battling what she claims is an epidemic on Long Island.
“Every year we lose over 365 children island wide to overdoses, and in 2009-2011, more than ten of our children have died due to heroin overdose in the Massapequa community alone,” a flier for the April 21 grimly reported.
Still, Talento is pleased with DFM’s growth and the response it continues to receive from local residents. In fact, its growth has been such that DFM officially goes under the name of Drug Free Long Island, Inc. A sister alliance, South Huntington Against Drugs has also been formed under the Drug Free Long Island banner.
The April 21 concert will be held at 8 p.m. at Massapequa High School. It will feature the singer Helene Masiko performing her Cher tribute act. Similar acts are Rag Doll, a Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons tribute band, and The Fellas, who will perform their tributes to The Temptations.
In addition to Assemblyman Saladino, other dignitaries hoped to be in attendance are Town of Oyster Bay Supervisor John Venditto, State Senator Charles Fuschillo, Nassau County Legislature’s Presiding Officer Peter J. Schmitt, and Town of Oyster Bay Clerk Steven J. Labriola.
Assemblyman Saladino will be honored, Talento said, for his service to DFM right from the time they set up operations in October 2009. That includes Saladino’s own work on the drug problem on Long Island, including setting up a Heroin Task Force and sponsoring trips to Albany for DFM members when the organization was first starting out. The assemblyman, Talento noted, attended DFM’s first public rally, one held at the Massapequa Long Island Railroad station October 2009. He also offered his services on how to run a non-profit organization, while also attending the DFM’s Awareness Walk, held in September 2011. “He [Saladino] helped us to get off the ground,” Talento said.
For the past three years, DFM has held educational workshops on a monthly basis with speakers from agencies throughout Long Island, plus those from the district attorney’s office and the Nassau County Police Department. DFM’s most high-profile action so far has been the role it took in prosecuting Dr. Sanji Francis, the Merrick-based physician accused of selling prescription drugs to undercover police. In October 2010, Francis, for his conviction, received a six-month prison sentence with five years probation. At the time of Francis’ arrest in December 2009, Police Commissioner Lawrence W. Mulvey thanked the Massapequa community for their sense of awareness that helped to lead to the investigation and eventual arrest of Francis. Despite that praise and the work of Nassau County prosecutors, the verdict proved disappointing to DFM members who had hoped for a longer term.
Proceeds from the April 21 concert will be used primarily to launch a Youth Center; which DFM members hope will provide a “healthy place” for Massapequa area youth to congregate.
Saturday, 08 March 2014 00:00
With kids today obsessed with all the latest electronic gaming gadgets — the Playstation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo 3DS, and the like — you’d think that the comparatively antiquated concept of pushing a piece of plastic along a sheet of cardboard would be eschewed by your average teenager; however, judging by the crowd of kids at the Massapequa Public Library’s Board Game Café, this actually may not be the case.
Young Adult Services librarian Peter Cirona, who created the Board Game Café at the library’s Central Avenue branch (in addition to a whole host of other young adult programs), said that it’s a great way for kids to socialize and play some classic board games in a fun and friendly environment.
Friday, 07 March 2014 00:00
On Feb. 27, parents in the Levittown, East Meadow, Massapequa and Farmingdale school districts came together for an informal pannel discussion on the New York State Education Department and the implementation of the state Common Core Learning Standards. Panelists included New York State Assemblyman Thomas McKevitt, Jeanette Deutermann of the Long Island Opt Out Facebook page, and former public school teacher David Greene, who came to the Farmingdale Public Library to talk with local parents about key concerns and questions with the curriculum.
Outspoken parent and founder of the Long Island Opt Out movement, Deutermann, delved into some of the factors behind what led to the state’s adoption of the Common Core, and how the state education department cites High School graduation rates as its reasoning behind the curriculum.
Thursday, 06 March 2014 09:47
One of Major League Soccer’s top front office executives has many fond memories of growing up in the Long Island Junior Soccer League (LIJSL). Bill Manning, the President of Western Conference champion Real Salt Lake and the club’s field, Rio Tinto Stadium, played for the LIJSL Select Team from 1979 to ‘83 as well as the Massapequa Soccer Club from 1972 to ‘83.
Manning’s Massapequa teams had virtually the same players from Under-10 to Under-19, but kept changing their name depending on who their coach was. He played for the Massapequa Flying Dutchmen (coached by Kurt Knoblauch), the Massapequa Bugs (Dick Roche), the Massapequa Cosmos (Jerry Lyons) and the Massapequa Bulls (coached by his father, also named Bill Manning). The Bulls might have lost in the Eastern New York Youth Soccer Association (ENYYSA) State Open Cup finals to B/W Gottschee in overtime in 1983, but his teams won the LIJSL division championship in 1974, ‘76 and ‘79 plus the Long Island Cup in 1980 and ‘83.
Thursday, 27 February 2014 10:58
If the games were played on paper, Massapequa would’ve had no shot. The Chiefs faced a tall order last week playing Elmont, which boasted a 12-3 record and four premier scorers. They gave a tremendous effort, but ultimately had their season cut short, 69-62, despite Alex Cosenza leading the scoring with 29 points.
“I can’t ask for anything else from these guys,” said Head Coach Matt Voigt. “I am so proud of them. I applaud their efforts,”