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Historical Society Hosts Ceramics Workshop

It was a refresher course on the art of ceramics at the Oyster Bay Historical Society last Wednesday night. Everything from the preservation, cleaning, handling and displaying of fine ceramic pieces was covered at the workshop, which was part of the American Library Association’s Preservation Week. OBHS archivist and librarian Nicole Menchise gave a detailed presentation to the small crowd on hand.

“This is not a workshop for everyday ceramics,” said Menchise. “This is for people who own particular types of ceramics, including family heirlooms and treasured keepsakes that must be handled with extreme care.”

Menchise started off the presentation by explaining the basics of ceramics, from how they’re made to the chemical process that is used to make them. She spoke about different types of ceramics from stoneware, porcelain and other glassware. She then gave a detailed description on the cleaning process, handling and repairs, storage and moving and displaying of fine ceramics.

“When cleaning ceramics you must never use bleach or products containing bleach on fine china,” said Menchise. “The chlorine gets under the glaze and reacts with both the glaze and the porcelain to ruin the piece.”

Menchise added that routine cleaning of ceramics is not recommended because regular housekeeping is potentially damaging to pieces and that when cleaning it is best to use natural bristle brushes or a low suction vacuum with a hose wrapped in nylon to bring out their natural shine.

When repairing a damaged piece, Menchise said that clean, dry hands or fitted, Nitrile gloves with textured fingertips are best to use. She said that with porcelain pieces, Elmer’s glue can be used on pieces that won’t see the inside of the dishwasher because the glue dries clear, is non-toxic and is water soluble. If you’re going to store your ceramic pieces, it is best not to use newspaper because the ink can run off on the object. Acid-free and lignin-free tissue and acid-free boxes are the best method of storage.

For displaying your ceramic pieces it is best to have a level surface, plenty of space away from other objects and preferably within a closed cabinet. Using museum putty is the best method to secure objects to shelving and lids to their vessels.

“This workshop gives owners a particular skill set to help them take care of their precious keepsakes and heirlooms,” said Menchise.

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
Written by Michael A. Miller, mmillercolumn@gmail.com