Written by Rich Forestano Friday, 04 April 2014 00:00
For Maestro Louis Panacciulli, the 30th anniversary of the Nassau Pops Symphony Orchestra is about giving back.
“We are celebrating this anniversary and we wanted to do something meaningful,” he said.
So, for its first concert commemorating the milestone for the Pops, the orchestra is holding “A Tribute to the American Spirit” on Sunday, April 13 at 3 p.m. at Chaminade High School in Mineola to benefit the Independence Fund. The fund raises money to purchase hi-tech wheelchairs for disabled veterans. Fox News’ Bill O’Reilly, who brought the fund into the national spotlight after The O’Reilly Factor ran a story with a war veteran, is co-sponsoring the event.
O’Reilly, a Chaminade graduate, called on viewers to donate to the fund. Viewers have raised more than $20 million in the last three years, according to Fox News.
“Anybody who needs [a chair] can get it,” O’Reilly said. “They have a great sense of independence because they can do anything from play golf, to go over any type of terrain with these chairs. They deserve this help.”
War veteran Jerral Hancock lost his left arm and was severely paralyzed after being hit with an improvised explosive device in Afghanistan. Hancock received a track chair from the fund.
“He seemed like an upbeat guy and didn’t seem to hold any grudges against anybody,” Panacciulli said. “It was heartwarming watching the interview. Our PR director called me and suggested we contact Bill to raise money for these track chairs with a concert.”
Track chairs cost around $15,000, but have a militaristic feature that helps users get around. Panacciulli, who co-founded the Pops, says a local veteran will likely receive the 500th track chair produced at the concert.
“They have tank tracks instead of wheels,” he said. “It affords them great mobility on a variety of terrains.”
The concert will feature traditional American classics, including “The Star Spangled Banner” and “America the Beautiful.” But, it will also feature lesser-played pieces, like “Thin Alabaster Cities Gleam” and “Flight of Valor.”
“In Their Honor,” by Carl Strommen is dedicated to the September, 11, 2001 attacks.
“It’s all patriotic music,” Panacciulli said. “We even have a female trio that will do a coupleof Andrew Sister songs from way back.”
Tickets are $50 for reserved seats. They are available online at nassaupops.com/tickets. For more information, call 516-565-0646.
Wednesday, 30 July 2014 00:00
The Village of Mineola’s Zoning Board last week approved Winthrop University Hospital’s plan to revamp the “Welcome to Mineola” sign atop the Station Plaza Diner at the Long Island Rail Road Station.
The village code prohibits rooftops signs, but the zoning board has relief powers.
“I spoke with the building commissioner and he said that he’s satisfied; that it’s structurally sound and stable,” Zoning Board Chairman John Macedo said. “If he’s satisfied, I’m satisfied.”
Saturday, 26 July 2014 00:00
The Village of East Williston was recently ruled against in the second round of lawsuits with neighboring Village of Williston Park involving the latter’s water rates—establishing a 13 percent increase from $3.83 per 1,000 gallons of water to $4.33.
Village of East Williston Mayor David Tanner said that the lawsuit, “still does not resolve the underlying problem between the villages, which is we feel that we’re being charged too much for water—the cost is excessive.”
Tanner said the village is still calculating the financial impact will be, and that the village has been making payments in escrow for every water bill received.
Thursday, 24 July 2014 00:00
Runners from all over Long Island came to run at the fourth annual Katie Oppo Memorial 5K on Sunday, June 15. The runner first across the finish line was Mineola resident Michael Mariotti, general manager, owner and host of the famous local restaurant Cafe Continental in Manhasset.
The day was glorious as the runners and walkers began their trek through Flower Hill from the starting line at Flower Hill Park. Organizers of this year’s event made the race a USATF Certified 5K race, timed by Long Island Race Timing.
Thursday, 17 July 2014 00:00
Mineola Hurricanes lost a battle of the bats on Sunday, June 29, at St. Joseph’s Field in Kings Park, falling short in a 9-8 ball game against the St. Joseph’s Saints in the first game of a doubleheader.
The top of the first saw the Hurricanes take an early 2-0 lead. The runs came home for the Hurricanes when T.J. McManus scored on an error and Connor Eakin scored on a fielder’s choice. The Saints never surrendered the lead after the first inning, scoring five runs on two errors and an RBI single by Jonathan.