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Science Vs. Sandy — Science Wins!

Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory (CSHL) survived Sandy thanks to a lot of well laid preparation plans and hard work before, during and after the storm.  Being on the shores of Cold Spring Harbor since 1890, the institution has learned a few things, especially after Hurricane Gloria in 1985.  Now, as one of the largest employers on Long Island, CSHL President Bruce Stillman has made preparedness a priority.

“Keeping the world’s leading cancer and autism research going has to be our number one priority,” said Dr. Stillman, “and CSHL’s scientists were kept in business during Sandy by extremely smart and dedicated facilities, information technology, and other support staff who developed and executed an emergency plan like we’ve never seen.  Our people saved science.”

It meant getting equipment and data to higher ground, including bringing up elevators, sandbagging exterior areas and getting eight diesel operated generators to allow scientists to work, and the cafeteria to serve food. All essential scientific operations continued through the storm and its aftermath.  The only cancellation was an Oct. 29 public lecture that CSHL is planning to reschedule for the spring.

Richard Leakey is professor and chair of Turkana Basin Institute, Stony Brook University Department of Anthropology was to speak on How Hominid Evolution Has Shaped Human Behavior, Ethics And Morality. Their focus is human prehistory and related earth and natural science studies.

CSHL’s preparedness allowed for the institution to extend itself as a generous neighbor.  Nestled in the middle of the residential community of Laurel Hollow, CSHL was in constant contact with the village leadership and firefighters, police, friends and residents benefited from the Lab’s on campus food services, WiFI access and warm spaces.

Storm response did necessitate some changes. Meetings and course schedules were adjusted on the fly and visiting scientists from around the world were accommodated. Organizers of the Nuclear Receptors & Disease meeting were undaunted by the hurricane and the meeting’s 50 plus attendees issued their now-famous challenge: “Science vs. Sandy...Science Wins!” which made some waves of its own.

Science did win and their planning may inspire others in the future. Diesel generators anyone? For more information please visit cshl.edu or call the CSHL Public Affairs Department at 367-8455.

News

Despite the national media attention about Ebola in recent weeks, there is one virus that is actually affecting Long Islanders, Enterovirus D68 (EV-D68), with one of the first cases identified in North Hempstead on Sept. 18 and a recent case on Oct. 15 in Suffolk County, which school officials called for the closing of school, as a health precaution.

Dr. Charles Schleien, chairman of the department of pediatrics at Cohen Children’s Medical Center, said that although the enterovirus is still active, cases are dwindling on Long Island. According to Schleien, approximately 500 cases have been reported this season of enterovirus, at Cohen’s Children Medical Center, with two to six patients being admitted per day.

Matt Bentz, of Forest Hills, was the winner of the Oyster Festival Raffle that took place as the event ended at 6 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 19. He had a choice between winning a 2015 Chrysler 200 three-year lease or $15,000 in cash. He chose the cash. He is the “Perfect Oyster Festival Raffle winner.”

Bentz is a computer systems administrator with Spa Creek Software, a company that writes software for other software developers, and has been to the festival numerous times over the years; in fact, next year he is hoping to sail here on his 24 ft. sailboat. He got it “reasonably” from a friend who was buying up.


Sports

The autumn varsity sports season is well on its way in Oyster Bay. Many young athletes have distinguished themselves. Several fine young athletes excelled right out of the gate and were chosen by the Oyster Bay Hight School coaches as Athletes of the Month for October 2014.

Cross Country Coach Kevin Cotter has athletes who consistently qualify for the states. Picking one to honor is a difficult task. Within this impressive group of talented athletes, one stands out: junior Alex Tosi, who recently broke the 17 minute barrier for a 5K course at Bethpage State park with a time of 16:52. This feat has not been accomplished since 2008.

5- and 6-year-old Peanuts

The Little Generals (Peanuts) stepped out into the cold Sunday morning ready to give the home crowd a show as they battled the Bellmore Braves, and that’s just what they did as the Generals beat the Braves 14-7. The teams battled to a first half tie as the Generals’ touchdown came on a 26-yard run by Kody Gehnrich, thanks to great blocks by John (Jack) Grace and Jack Symanski.

In the second half, where the Generals are usually at their best, the defense shut out the Braves as Rodney Hill, Jr. and Brandon Babel stepped in on the defense line to create a great push to allow Francesco Allocca to make eight tackles. The offense got a big boost with Allocca being allowed to play RB after playing QB the past two games, and boy did he respond behind great lead blocking from Luca Granito. Allocca carried the ball nine times for 60 yards and a TD coming on the last play of the game.


Calendar

Boys & Girls Club Gala

Thursday, October 23

Halloween Party

Saturday, October 25

Property Tax Exemptions Workshop

Tuesday, October 28



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
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