Parking issues and student capacity were at the heart of the discussion during Smart Brain America’s public hearing in Mineola last week. The tutoring franchise is looking to open a new location at 345 Hillside Avenue.
Smart Brain CEO Surendra Gupta noted two parking spots are currently available at the location. Furthermore, that he’d enforce traffic concerns with customers.
“We’ve told people to not double park at our other sites,” Gupta said. “It’s not safe for the children. If the classes are at any particular time, maybe eight or nine kids at a time, I don’t see any parking issues occurring.”
For the first time, the Long Island Portuguese community will have a parade in Mineola. On Sunday, June 8, more than 50 groups will ride on colorful floats and display their Portuguese pride. Long Island is home to almost 20,000 residents who are Portuguese or of Portuguese descent.
“This is a great way to unite the community and I am proud to be a part of its inception,” said Manuel Rodrigues, president of the Portuguese Heritage Society–Lusitano.
The Day of Portugal, Camoes and the Communities, is a holiday celebrating the history and heritage of the Portuguese people throughout the world. One child representing each organization will walk alongside special guest Dr. Jose Cesario, the Portuguese secretary of state for
Portuguese communities abroad and a list of Honorary Marshalls that include Portuguese-Americans New York State Senator Jack Martins and Mineola Deputy Mayor Paul Pereira.
In a time when a lot of mom and pop stores are going out of business to make way for bigger chains, there is a family business in Mineola that has stayed strong for almost 80 years. Mineola Bicycle, Fitness and Mower on Jericho Turnpike has been in business since 1935, selling the finest two wheel transportation and power equipment in the Nassau County.
“Our business started out in 1935 in a building on the northeast corner of Jericho Turnpike selling bicycles to residents,” said store manager Barry Dworkin. “In the 1950s, we saw there was need for more so we started selling power equipment and snow blowers.”
The building was moved to the opposite corner of the street in 1958.
East Williston Deputy Mayor Bonnie Parente announced that she will seek election for the Town of North Hempstead’s District Council 2 seat. Parente, a Republican, was elected to the East Williston Village Board in 2011. She decided to run after the Republican party approached her to challenge the seat’s expiring term.
“I always thought I would be good for that,” she said. “My term as a deputy mayor ends in 2015 and so it seems like the right next step.”
Parente feels her work in the village, specifically issues with the East Williston Fire Department and water rate tussles between the village and Williston Park, has prepared her for a bigger role in town government.
There are two open seats on the Mineola Board of Education for the 2014 ballot, with two candidates waiting to fill them. On Monday May 5, current board member Nicole Matzer and newcomer Margaret Ballantyne-Mannion presented themselves to the community during a sparsely attended Meet the Candidates Night at Mineola High School. The annual budget and school board vote will take place on Tuesday, May 20 from 6 a.m. to 9 p.m. at the Meadow Drive and Jackson Avenue schools.
Matzer was selected last year to fill the remaining term of former board member Terence Hale, who resigned from the board in 2013. She has previously volunteered in the district, serving as the PTO president of the Willis Avenue School for two years.
Matzer also served as district council co-president. She resides in Mineola, having moved to the district in 1999 with her husband, Eric. Matzer has two children and teaches catechism at St. Aidan’s.
Everyone was out for the cause on Wednesday, May 7 at Jericho Terrace for Night on the Town in Mineola. Event reps were hoping to raise $100,000 for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society of Long Island (LLSLI) and as of two weeks before the event, they had sold 700 tickets.
Event coordinator and Piccola Bussola owner Tony Lubrano said he expects the final tally to breach $80,000, surpassing the 2012 event total of $72,500.
“Each year it seems to get better, but this year it was leaps and bounds ahead,” Lubrano said. “The crowd was larger and energetic. We definitely raised more money than recent years.”
As someone who is a creator at heart, East Williston artist Sabine Jean-Bart enjoys any activity that calls for transforming something. She loves to sew, knit and even garden, but her true love is to paint.
Painting has always been an activity Jean-Bart takes pleasure in doing, but it wasn’t until 10 years ago that she started developing her skills. When her youngest son started high school, she found that she had more free time and decided to do something for herself.
“I’m always learning and always trying to absorb from whoever I’m working with,” said Jean-Bart. “There are so many great artists out there. I’m just scratching the surface.”
The Village of Mineola is accepting bids from prospective contractors to build the Memorial Park bandshell. The Village of Mineola announced that it purchased a bandshell 73 feet wide and 38 feet deep in February. It’s part of the ongoing revamp of Memorial Park, which is set for significant upgrades this year.
Bids are due by May 16 at 10 a.m. The contract will be awarded to the lowest bidder.
For Mineola teacher Lindsay Spanhake, teaching seventh-grade math at Mineola Middle School for the last six years has consisted of hard work and dedication to students. Well, her dedication has been recognized; she has been selected as Middle School Math Teacher of the Year by the Nassau County Math Teachers Association.
She will be honored at the organization’s annual awards dinner on Monday, May 21.
“I want to make math fun and relatable to their lives so they can leave my room and feel they’ll need what they learn in their everyday lives,” Spanhake said. “I feel there’s importance in showing students that you genuinely believe in them and that you’re here to encourage them to succeed not just in math, but any goal they wish to attain.”
The Village of Mineola has been ordered by the New York State Public Employment Relations Board (PERB) to repay medical insurance costs deducted from retired employees after August 2011, according to documents reviewed by the Mineola American. The village must continue to pay the full cost of retirees health benefits until it can negotiate a different contract with the union.
The ruling from Administrative Law Judge Angela Blassman marks the second adjudicated dispute between the village and its employees union over health benefit contributions. Workers lost the first argument. Dissatisfaction over that loss contributed to a break with the Teamsters Union, which
had represented village employees for more than 20 years, in favor of the United Public Service Employees Union (UPSEU).
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