Written by Dagmar Fors Karppi Friday, 07 September 2012 00:00
Keeping up the momentum of the Labor Day weekend, Tuesday, Sept. 4 was a special night. Austin Azzaretto, Cruise Night chair said, “We had two bands performing, we gave out Oyster Bay Chamber VIP discount cards to all the cars, and a free T-shirt for the first 25 cars.” [This was the plan, as we went to press on Friday, Aug. 31.]
Mr. Azzaretto added, “Cruise Night is having a special night on Sept. 11. Richard Cannata will be playing. He is the noted saxophonist for Billy Joel.” Austin is a car lover and a music aficianado. He has many friends in the music industry and has them play at Cruise Nights as a special perc for the visitors.
Austin does it all with the help of a group of volunteers who show up every Tuesday on Audrey Avenue and along the Audrey Avenue extension, as the show now reaches north to the old LIRR station. Working with Austin are: Bob Basta, Camine Pirolo, Walter Imperatore, Sally Robilotto, Shari Lee Cope-Dembowski, Oyster Bay-East Norwich Chamber President Michele Browner, chamber treasurer John Delillo, Les Schachter, Paige Dawson who in spite of moving to Connecticut is a regular. She sells the 50/50 tickets that benefits the chamber’s work in the hamlet.
“Don’t forget to mention my assistant every Tuesday, Christopher Masone. He’s a great help in setting up and knocking down the barriers that define the car show areas.” said Austin.
Regular Cruise Night attendees bring along chairs and set themselves up along Audrey Avenue near their cars, ready to greet other car fans, and to answer questions and have a great night out with buddies. That was the case with three men sitting outside of Chrison & Bellina on Tuesday.
Michael Sherman, brought along his BMW ’07. Gene Doyle of Bayside, Florida brought his red 2010 Corvette with an unusual license plate. It read “Judge”. Mr. Doyle judges Corvettes at shows. The third pal was Denis Mouzakes, a local resident. He has a 2000 Plymouth Prowler. He remembered the reporter from the days she was covering Michael Peregine when he was the mayor of Oyster Bay Cove.
Mr. Mouzakes said of Cruise Night, “It’s the best show on Long Island. There are great people here.” His only criticism was “It starts too late. It starts at 5:45 and that’s too late because it gets dark too fast.”
Neil K, of Plainview brought his ‘72 Corvette. He also has a ‘67 Corvette, which is his favorite. “I’m keeping it at home to keep it safe,” he said.
Joe Cardiello, a major supporter of Cruise Night, of Sands Point brought his ‘62 Corvette on a 2004 Corvette Chassis. He said the ’62 Corvette is his favorite because of its styling.
Camine Tufano brought his ‘57 Chevy. It’s his favorite classic. He bought it seven and a half years ago in Naples, Florida. “They stay better in Florida because of the weather,” he said. He’s had it for 25 years. “I only show it here in Oyster Bay.
Mel Lipschitz had his ’65 Corvette there. It’s for sale.
Bill Burke and Santa Burke of East Norwich were chatting with Terri and Frank Schifano. Bill is a director of the Main Street Association of Oyster Bay and Frank is well known for chairing the Saint Rocco tent at the annual Italian-American Club’s St. Rocco festival. Bill Burke brought his 1970 Dodge Challenger RT – that he restored himself. Frank owns a 50th anniversary red Corvette, 2003. Where was it? “It’s in storage,” said Frank.
Wood carver Pierre Brandt was walking along Audrey Avenue, taking a look at the cars. He is famous for his wildlife carvings that are sold at Dodds & Eder.
Vinnie Kash of Hicksville brought his ‘65 Corvette. When asked which is his favorite car, he just pointed to the Corvette and said, “That one.”
Eric Montner of East Norwich brought his 1957 Chevy Nomad that he purchased eight years ago. When asked what his favorite car was, he had the same answer. “That’s it. The ‘57 Chevys are my favorites.” Why? “I got my first one at age 17. I bought it out of a junk yard for $75. My mother lent me the money. I had to pay her back.”
Mr. Montner added, “I was one of the first 25 people to start this whole thing.”
James Laurita of Commack was sitting in the middle of the group of three, and called himself — just a visitor. That means he got in free. His pals had to pay the $4 entry fee – but it’s all just about fun for the three friends, he, Mr. Montner and Frankie L. of Bellmore, who was the third in the group. He brought along his yellow Corvette, a 2011 Grand sport. “It only has 1,200 miles,” he said confidentially. Which is his favorite car? “That one,” he said.
You can understand why Cruise Night is filled with such good feelings. It is populated with happy car owners willing to share their love of motoring with others. Those good feelings are evident as you see mothers pushing strollers, kids on their dad’s shoulders, couples walking hand and hand and everyone having a great time.
That even goes for the group of guys wearing black Harley Davidson shirts. They were checking out the cars but admitted they’d “rather be riding” their hogs.
Cruise Nights end on Sept. 25 so be sure to check it out before the season ends.
Saturday, 08 March 2014 00:00
Local author Rajdeep Paulus of Locust Valley is living the writer’s dream. After having her first young adult novel published last year with positive reviews, she has just released her second novel, and will be holding a book signing at The Book Revue in Huntington on March 12.
Her first book, Swimming Through Clouds, is about a high school transfer student and her friendship with the basketball captain during their senior year. The sequel, Seeing Through Stones, was released March 1.The mom of four girls only recently tried her hand at novel writing; an English major in college who then taught for a few years, says, “I spent about a decade doing the mom thing...then as my youngest got to be school age, my husband asked me, ‘What do you want to do with your life now?’”
Friday, 07 March 2014 00:00
February, Black History Month, was celebrated by the Hood A.M.E. Zion Church of Oyster Bay with a series of special events.
“The whole month was inspiring, so I am looking forward to doing it next year,” said Black History-Harriet Tubman Committee Chair Diane Cortes-Evans.
The month included a visit from Assemblyman Charles Lavine, who attended the Feb. 9 service and presented Pastor Linda Vanager with a citation from the NYS Legislature for the church’s work in preserving the Pine Hollow Cemetery, and a lecture by historian Simon Rutledge.
Thursday, 06 March 2014 12:01
On Saturday, Feb. 22, as temperatures rose to well above freezing for the first time in weeks and the melting snow created a thick fog, the Oyster Bay High School Varsity Lady Baymen Basketball Team showed up at Long Island University ready to play.
Thursday, 27 February 2014 11:48
The Winter Varsity Sports Season is into post-season play in Oyster Bay. Many fine young athletes have excelled this season and were chosen by the Oyster Bay High School coaches as Athletes of the Month for February.
Cassidy Exum has been a member of the varsity wrestling team since his freshman year. Since that time, he has achieved All-County honors, which includes a Nassau County Small School County Championship. This year, Exum started his competitive season with success. He was a place winner in the annual Locust Valley Tournament, a Hank Paris Tournament Champion and a Bethpage Tournament Champion, where he was presented with the Champion of Champions Award. Exum’s success is due to his work ethic, dedication and discipline.; he is a fierce competitor which will help him as he competes for his second Nassau County Championship. Exum is coached by 2012 Coaches of the Year Jay Davis and Doug Axman.