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Free Rides To Oyster Festival And Back

John J. Harvey has room for 60 people as it goes and comes from the Oyster Festival

Huntley Gill, captain and part owner of the John J. Harvey is offering free rides to the Oyster Festival for 60 people. The only catch is you leave early, on Friday, Oct. 12 at 7 a.m. and will leave late, on Monday, Oct. 15 at 11 a.m. The Oyster Fest is on Oct. 13 and 14. Check their website for reservations and details for the voyage. Last year Dan and Tanya Walker took the trip back from the Oyster Festival as did Philip Blocklyn, Oyster Bay Historical Society executive director and Elizabeth Roosevelt, who runs the OBHS gift shop. Mr. Gill said it’s a great trip through the Long Island Sound back to Manhattan and its hi-rise bordered waterfront.

The John J. Harvey is returning to the Oyster Festival for the second time. Last year from wherever you were on the waterfront you could see the Harvey doing water displays on the hour. They will be doing that again. Mr. Gill said, “Last year thousands of people visited the boat, it was great. This year again we will be offering tours of the wheel house, the engine house, we will be giving out printed guides and the pilot will be there to explain what we do.”

Good things are happening for the Harvey, said Mr. Gill. “John J. Harvey has been awarded the generous (and prestigious) Federal Save America’s Treasures Grant. We must raise $165,955 by January 31, 2013 or lose the money. Our recent New York State matching grant has ensured our hull’s integrity. This federal grant will restore decks, house and stacks, ensuring critical watertight integrity from above.”

He said to raise the needed funds they are holding their 2012 Fall Benefit on Sunday, Oct. 28 from 1 to 7 p.m. at Pier 66, located at 26th Street, on the Hudson River in NYC. It is a benefit to celebrate their Federal Save America’s Treasures Grant, and to dedicate the John J. Harvey Honor Roll.

From 1 to 5 p.m. it will be all family fun including boat rides, a barbecue, raffles, tours and celebrity readings of Fireboat, at a fee of $15 per child and $25 per adult. From 5 to 7 p.m., there will be a gala sunset party with cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, an auction and they will unveil a donor wall, all for a ticket price of $100. Donating more money to the event will result in more gifts such as John J. Harvey crew t-shirt and copies of My River Chronicle and Fireboat.

Harvey History

Fireboat John J. Harvey is moored at Pier 66 Maritime, at 26th St. and the Hudson River, a historic car-float barge. Harvey’s home is provided by the generosity of Angela Krevey and her late, greatly missed, husband John, whose vision was the catalyst for saving the fireboat.

John J. Harvey was built in 1931 and named for FDNY pilot John J. Harvey who was killed aboard fireboat Thomas Willett while fighting a fire aboard the North German Lloyd Line’s SS Muenchen. At 130 feet and 268 gross tons, she is among the most powerful fireboats ever in service, capable of pumping up to 18,000 gallons of water a minute. She is the link between the fireboats with steam engines that pre-dated her and gas powered engines. Harvey assisted during such notable fires as the Cunard Line pier fire in 1932, the burning of the Normandie in 1942, and the ammunition ship El Estero during World War II. She served the FDNY until her retirement in 1994.

Reactivated For 9/11

On September 11, 2001, John J. Harvey was reactivated as FDNY Marine 2. Alongside FDNY fireboats Firefighter and John D. McKean, she pumped water for 80 hours, until water mains were restored. That story is told in Fireboat, a 2002 Maira Kalman book. The Harvey is also detailed in My River Chronicles: Rediscovering the Work that Built America by Jessica DuLong.

Lady Engineer

Ms. DuLong is the John J. Harvey’s chief engineer, one of the world’s only female fireboat engineers. She will be aboard the Harvey on the Monday and Friday sails but not at the festival. Her book will be available for sale.

According to the John J. Harvey website, “After journalist Jessica DuLong was laid off from her dot-com job, life took an unexpected turn. A volunteer day aboard fireboat John J. Harvey led to a job in the engine room, where she found a taste of home she hadn’t realized she was missing.

“Working with the boat’s finely crafted machinery made her wonder what America is losing in our shift away from craftsmanship and hands-on work. Her questions crystallized at Ground Zero where fireboat Harvey worked alongside active-duty FDNY Marine Division boats to pump Hudson River water - the only water available since hydrants had failed - to firefighters on land.”

Before being called back into service as a fireboat the Harvey had been helping to evacuate lower Manhattan when they were told they were needed by the fire service.

News

If you missed the 6th annual champagne party at Coe Hall in Planting Fields, put it on your calendar for next year, because this is the party of the summer. A total of 175 guests attended, and many of them were in costume, a new addition to the popular champagne party. The always ebullient Henry Joyce, executive director of Planting Fields Foundation, greeted his guests with his date Daphne, a 3-month-old long haired Dachshund, who is a companion for his Great Dane, Lucy.

An expert’s tips on bringing the

best of your garden into your home

Right now, Oyster Bay is in bloom. From the well-tended gardens of Planting Fields to unmowed patches near the Shu Swamp preserve, flowers are not just beautify our community, they also are calling out to us to bring them inside our homes to add color and fragrance. You don’t hear them? Trust me, the flowers in your garden are even calling you by name.

But don’t just stuff a bouquet in a vase. Make them look as good and last as long as possible. To find out how to do that, as well as how to improve your backyard flora, I asked Scott Lucas, the greenhouse supervisor of Old Westbury Gardens for some advice. He invited to join him in his cutting garden.


Sports

Kevin Mercier, 39, of Oyster Bay, led a large contingent of local runners in the Lynne, Gartner, Dunne & Covello Sands Point Sprint 5 Kilometer Run, held on the grounds of Nassau County’s Sands Point Preserve on Saturday morning, Aug. 9. Mercier was the 18th finisher overall and third in the 35-39 age group with a time of  21 minutes, 7 seconds.

Other local runners winning awards at the Sands Point Preserve were Nicholas Cuddy of Oyster Bay, who earned first place honors in the Clydesdale Weight Division with a time of 25:53, Joanne Gallo of Oyster Bay, who  took home the first place award in the women’s 65-69 age group with a time of 28:11, and Anja Hermann of Oyster Bay, third place woman in the 20-24 age group, who finished in 28:47.

Theodore Roosevelt Memorial Park in Oyster Bay will once again be the site of the Long Island’s premiere multisport event – the 27th annual Runner’s Edge - Town of Oyster Bay Triathlon on Saturday, Aug. 23, and the Runner’s Edge – Town of Oyster Bay Junior Triathlon for youngsters ages 8-13 on Sunday, Aug. 24.

The Saturday main event is a “sprint” triathlon, which consists of a half-mile swim in Oyster Bay harbor, a one loop 15 kilometer bike ride over hill and dale through beautiful Oyster Bay, Oyster Bay Cove and Laurel Hollow, and a 5 kilometer run through Mill Neck and Brookville, “up” to Planting Fields Arboretum and “down”to the finish at back at  Roosevelt  Park.


Calendar

Bayville Car Show

Friday, Aug. 22

Junior Triathlon

Sunday, Aug. 24

Historic Church Service And Tour

Sunday, Aug. 24



Columns

1959: The Year The Music Stopped Playing
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
Written by Mike Barry, MFBarry@optonline.net

Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com