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Celebrating Volunteers

The Heart And Soul Of

The Life Enrichment Center

On April 25 the Life Enrichment Center at Oyster Bay celebrated 35 years of recognizing the contributions of its volunteers.  Staff and seniors selected four volunteers for their efforts in making the Center a warm, welcoming and important resource for seniors in the surrounding communities.

As Silvana Gullo, Executive Director, explained, “Every volunteer is important to the well-being of the Center.”  The seniors themselves help make up the 300+ daily volunteers performing such tasks such as preparing the monthly calendar mailed to members, which would be a very difficult undertaking if not for volunteers who fold, stuff and mail it to over 1,000 members!  This is done with smiles from seniors and staff who enjoy working side by side. Other important volunteer tasks include driving seniors to medical appointments, visiting homebound seniors and nursing homes, organizing trips, managing the “Silver Threads” thrift shop, decorating for events, and greeting guests at reception.

This year’s Volunteers of the Year have demonstrated an ongoing commitment and dedication to the Center’s mission.  Diane Aerne of Syosset, formerly an Oyster Bay resident and currently President of the Senior Executive Advisory Board, leads the “Happy Hookers,” a group she founded to crochet blankets and shawls for nursing home residents. Andrew Cintolo, a Wantagh resident, joined the Center in 2011 after months of searching the internet for a meaningful volunteer opportunity. Andrew found his niche assisting Chef Anthony two days a week consistently.  Sheila Cisco, of Oyster Bay followed in her mother’s footsteps by joining the Center’s Friendly Visitors Committee bringing song and cheer to local nursing home residents. Sheila’s work doesn’t end there, she can be found in Angela’s Café selling home-baked goods or greeting guests at the reception area five days a week. Tom Colgrove of Locust Valley is a favorite amongst all the ladies at the Center. Tom helps out in the dining room delivering lunch trays with a smile and spends his afternoons twice a week helping the visually impaired with their Bingo cards!  

The Recognition Luncheon was extra special this year with a visit by Town of Oyster Bay Councilman Joseph G. Pinto representing Supervisor Joseph Venditto and Victoria Meyerhoefer, Nassau County Director of Human Services, Office of the Aging, representing County Executive

Edward Mangano. Both delivered and read printed and framed Citations praising the volunteers for their commitment.

The center is proud to be successfully providing Oyster Bay and the surrounding community seniors with a comprehensive resource.  Nutritious lunches, wellness and fitness programs, and entertaining activities are offered five days a week, 250 days a year!  The center’s Daybreak Program presents caregivers a social adult day care option for their frail and memory impaired seniors.  Additionally, from 4:30 p.m. to 8 p.m., Monday through Wednesday, “After Hour” programs make low-cost wellness and fitness classes available for individuals’ 50 and over.  The center will continue expanding and enhancing programs with support from the community.

“Volunteers are essential to the well-being of the Center” stated Silvana Gullo, Executive Director.  “Everyone has an opportunity to make a difference in the lives of the seniors by volunteering their time”.  The Center is presently seeking drivers, Friendly Visitors, personal trainers, writers for public relations initiatives, evening and Saturday volunteers for our thrift shop, bakers for the café’, creative thinkers for our event planning and customized opportunities for all.  For information on how you could volunteer your time call Silvana Gullo at (516) 922-1770.

News

Driving rain and an early start time did not deter 600 people who arrived at Crest Hollow Country Club recently to celebrate the Women’s Fund of Long Island’s 20th year and to honor four exceptional women.

The breakfast started with a meet and greet and a chance to showcase Women’s Fund contest winner Patti Hogarty, designer of “Women as Bamboo.” Inspired by her neighbor’s bamboo, she entered the contest drawing a design of the bamboo, which Ambalu Jewelers of Roslyn then turned into various pendants of which 40-percent of the profits would go to WFLI. Hogarty wrote a short essay comparing women to bamboo in that they are strong and can weather difficult storms, yet remain graceful and continue to grow sending out new shoots.

Oyster Bay High School Principal Dr. Dennis O’Hara addressed the board of education at Tuesday night’s meeting about offering a summer school program at the high school. It would be the first time the district had a summer school program in more than 12 years.

Dr. O’Hara explained that with the institution of the Common Core state standards, students are faced with a greater level of academic rigor and more challenging coursework. The program would offer remedial and enrichment classes for students both in and out of district.


Sports

In the history of Oyster Bay High School athletics, no one has ever won a Girls’ Tennis New York State Championship. Celeste Matute and Courtney Kowalsky became the first when they won the 2014 New York State Doubles Championship in Latham on Nov. 3. What makes this tremendous achievement even more remarkable is that Matute is a junior and Kowalsky is a sophomore.

The girls, who are usually singles players, teamed up to take on the very best players in Nassau County and New York State. They won all 10 matches in the section XIII and NYSPHSAA tournaments and left Latham as the 2014 New York State doubles champions.

The conditions were as fierce as the competition earlier this month at Oakcliff Sailing’s Halloween Invitational.

Ten teams from the U.S., Canada and Bermuda battled 30-knot-plus winds, heavy rain and biting cold to see who would take top honors at Oakcliff’s final match racing event of the 2014 season.


Calendar

Raingarden Workshop

Wednesday, November 19 & Thursday, November 20

Informative Hospital Talk

November November 20

Opera Night

Sunday, November 23



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