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Kilmeade's Passion Brings Spy History Alive

If Brian Kilmeade could be cloned and sent to all the high schools in this country, our love of America would grow by leaps and bounds; and students would get in line to take history classes. Speaking on Sunday, Jan. 19 at the Seawanhaka Yacht Club, Kilmeade shared tales of George Washington and his Long Island Spy Ring from his book George Washington’s Secret Six. Kilmeade's telling held the excitement of a Super Bowl finish—with Robert Townsend crossing the 30-yard line and heading for the end zone. (Kilmeade's first two books were sports oriented.)

The author is co-host of Fox News Channel’s Fox and Friends and also hosts Kilmeade and Friends on Fox News Radio. This, his third book, hit number three on the NY Times Bestseller list and is Penguin’s leading book for the year.

Kilmeade, who was a jock at Massapequa High School, has that sports-writer enthusiasm when telling a story. He puts you right on the page with him as he takes you into the world of the George Washington Culper Spy Ring, which operated in the heart of the North Shore. It's where many of the listeners at Seawanhaka are from, and many had comments to add to his history.

Kilmeade appreciated the input, saying he wanted to thank all the people on Long Island who helped him nail down the true story of how George Washington’s spy ring pulled victory out of the hands of the British. The Brits didn’t think much of the colonists' ability to fight and didn’t realize that George Washington knew his chances were poor, and that only with the help of good intelligence could he win the war.

To search out the truth for the story that Kilmeade has been following for a decade, he got together a panel of 22 experts in the field, and taped the session, as they battled out the myths to find the stories behind them. He is still interested in finding out more of the story.

Kilmeade wants America to give Long Island its due. He is planning to add new material to the book when it comes out in paperback. It belongs on your shelf of local history.

The Spymasters lecture series will continue with  Evan Thomas speaking on March 9.  A “local son,” Thomas has authored eight books. His most recent is Ike’s Bluff: President Eisenhower’s Secret Battle to Save the World (2012).

This great series brings to light the importance of spies and their intelligence work in  changing the outcomes of history.

Space is limited, so please call 516-922-6808 to reserve. Tickets are $100 or $75 for members. The lecture is followed by a buffet dinner.

News

A lot of people think that our world would be better off without all of the insects in it. Not so, according to Lois Lindberg, volunteer naturalist at the Sagamore Hill National Historic Site. Lindberg and fellow naturalist Wendy Albin gave a presentation about the importance of butterflies and insects in our ecosystem at the site of Theodore Roosevelt’s former home on Saturday, Aug. 23, from 1 to 2:30 p.m.

“Butterflies and other insects are very important in nature,” said Lindberg. “People see bees, wasps and ants and other insects as pests, but they actually contribute to our ecosystem by each doing their own unique job. They pollinate the flowers and fruits and without them we would not be able to eat a lot of the stuff we eat every day.”

Building J at Oyster Bay’s Western Waterfront is again up and running as the Ida May Project builds the 40-passenger oyster boat that will be operated by the WaterFront Center. The Ida May Project of the Christeen Oyster Sloop Preservation Corp. is a not-for-profit 501(c)3 organization whose mission is to preserve Oyster Bay maritime heritage by involving the community in traditional boat building.

Bill Shephard, Herb Scheirhorst, President Clint Smith and Project Manager Hank Tiska were there on a recent Thursday. Smith had left at around 2 p.m. to get a part he had at home they needed to fix the tractor they use to move the logs they cut to size in their saw mill. Fixing their equipment and cutting logs are some of the many projects that encompass the work.


Sports

Picture-perfect weather was on board for the Mill Neck Family of Organizations’ Third Annual Sail the Sound for Deafness Regatta on Thursday, Aug. 7. The event, featuring an evening race of yachts, followed by a cocktail party, was held to benefit the organization that serves individuals who are deaf, hard of hearing or have other special needs.

In this year’s race, fifteen sailors took to the waters of Oyster Bay Harbor; three aboard their own boats, others on several boats provided by Oakcliff Sailing Center. The WaterFront Center’s oyster sloop, Christeen and two vessels from Oyster Bay Marine Center, brought a total of 45 spectators out to watch the race.

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.


Calendar

Movie at the Library

Thursday, August 28

Sagamore Hill Walk

Saturday, August 30

Hooks and Needles

Tuesday, September 2



Columns

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

The Eccentric Heiress Of ‘Empty Mansions’
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Yellow Margarine And A Pitch For The Ages
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