Members of the Life Enrichment Center at Oyster Bay enjoyed an outing to a beautiful manor tucked neatly away in Syosset … and got nose-to-nose with horses. A visit to the Christian Fellowship House introduced center members and staff to Florence Steffens, the family matriarch who, along with her husband Rev. Paul, opened the adult home as a “Bed and Breakfast” for seniors in 1962. Their daughter Pam and her husband Steve, along with their daughters Michelle and Sharon, continue to manage the facility. Members enjoyed refreshments on the veranda while they overlooked Fellowship Ranch’s retired mares grazing in the peaceful green pasture just beyond the stately manor.
Members learned of a new program being offered at the Fellowship Ranch which centers on interacting with horses. Holistic Healing With Horses founder Ileen Kessler, LCSW-R, explained the therapeutic benefits the program provides. The success of the holistic program was quickly demonstrated when members experienced hands-on interactions with the Fellowship Ranch horses.
As summer faded, school began and so did school spirit. Proud Oyster Bay High School parents stood by under the shade of the trees watching the students parade down East Main Street on their way to the homecoming football game on Memorial Field. All students marching had spirit: the cheerleaders, the pep band, representatives from each grade level, Vernon and Teddy Roosevelt Elementary, and the homecoming royal court.
The first marchers in the parade were the peppy cheerleaders, proudly wearing purple and gold. The girls had pom poms in hand and smiles all around, their excitement gleaming and spreading to the parents along the sidewalk. They were followed by the extremely talented pep band, enthusiastically playing joyful music filling the air in Oyster Bay. Matthew Sisia, the proficient music teacher who led the school band to Carnegie Hall, marched with the pep band.
The Oyster Bay Railroad Museum kicked off its capital campaign on Sept. 22 at a well-attended meeting held at the Sagamore Yacht Club. The OBRM board of directors and Station Restoration and Campaign Committee members demonstrated how far they have come in their planning, including an interesting highlight about the station house architect, Bradford Lee Gilbert.
“His bread and butter was railroad stations. He did 18 different ones, including this one for the LIRR,” said John Collins, historic design professional, who is working on the new plans with architect Peter Albinski. Gilbert was known for his interest in the latest technology and became known as the Inventor of the Skyscraper.
Despite the rainy weather, approximately 65 people turned out for an unusual art fundraiser held on Centre Island for the benefit of Oakcliff Sailing Center last month.
The event started with guests boarding a boat in Oyster Bay Marine Center for the scenic ride over to the home of Betsy and Hunt Lawrence on the south side of Centre Island. Here, spread throughout their home, their 1906 restored Cypress wood greenhouse and their 4.5 acres were nearly 40 pieces of art for sale. Visitors were given a “treasure map” of the grounds that highlighted the art amongst it.
On Saturday, Oct. 11 and Sunday, Oct. 12, from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., the Mill Neck Family’s Fall Harvest Festival arrives, welcoming returning visitors and new friends, too. This year includes a much-anticipated performance by Sean Forbes, who will take the stage on Saturday at 2 p.m. Forbes, an exciting new hip-hop artist who is deaf, launched his career by making music videos in his basement. Today, he performs and produces professional music videos with a focus toward the deaf and hard-of-hearing community, making him a voice for not only his generation, but deaf culture as well.
Forbes is co-founder of D-PAN, The Deaf Professional Arts Network, a non-profit organization that focuses on translating popular songs into American Sign Language music videos for deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals. After signing a record deal with Web Entertainment in 2010, Forbes released his debut EP music video titled “I’m Deaf,” which includes the Latin-influenced song “Let’s Mambo.” The stylish video, featuring the talents of Academy Award-winning actress Marlee Matlin, as well as more information on Forbes, can be found at www.deafandloud.com.
By all accounts, GlenFest was a huge success. The music festival held at the Homestead in Oyster Bay on Sunday, Sept. 21 featured 80 local musicians spread out in 25 acts over the course of 10 hours.
“I am elated that everyone in attendance had such a wonderful time and was allowed the opportunity to enjoy such a talented list of musicians,” said event organizer Dave Losee after the event. “This was a righteous festival with beautiful people for a beautiful cause.”
Hosted by the Town of Oyster Bay’s Environmental Resources Department on Saturday, Sept. 20, the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary joined with many local and surrounding community volunteer groups for beach and waterway clean up. Cleanup crews from the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary (USCGAUX) unit, Flotilla 22-05 in Oyster Bay, have always responded to this call.
From the auxiliary was responsible to clean up debris both on the waterway and the beaches within Oyster Bay Harbor and Centre Island.
With a general discontent about the view-blocking pedestrian railings recently installed along West Shore Road, the discussion at the Oyster Bay Civic Association meeting on Sept. 18 focused on the possibility of having the road designated as a scenic highway.
This concept was suggested by Gregory Druhak of Centre Island, a regular traveler along West Shore Road, who said, “I believe this is the most scenic drive on Long Island west of the Hamptons, perhaps on all of Long Island itself, and it is not being treated as such. I feel we are being given the Lefferts Boulevard [down by JFK airport] expressway extension instead. For all you can see, it might as well be the Belt Parkway below the fence instead of Oyster Bay. This is wrong.”
This year you can expect to see the Freedom Schooner Amistad, Connecticut’s flagship, tied up on the Western Waterfront Pier at the Oyster Festival on Oct. 18 and 19. The ship is a Baltimore Clipper that is 129 feet in length and weighs 96 tons. Its home port is New Haven, Conn.
The tall ship visits ports worldwide, as an ambassador for friendship. It serves as a floating classroom, icon and monument to many souls that were broken or lost as the result of the transatlantic slave trade.
The original Amistad, which means friendship in Spanish, was made famous in 1839 when 53 African captives (men, women and children) transported from Havana revolted against their captors. The captives gained control of the ship under the leadership of Sengbe Pieh, later known as Joseph Cinque, who commanded the ship’s navigator to return them to Sierra Leone. Instead, the ship headed north, landing in Long Island, and was taken into custody by the United States Navy.
Diamond Fitness held its grand opening on Saturday, Sept. 6. Members of the Historic Oyster Bay-East Norwich Chamber of Commerce came out to meet Wendy Goldstein, her staff and her re-invented gym at 138 South St.
Goldstein said she was touched by the warmth of the people who came into the gym to welcome her, even before the official opening. “People came in to say hello, saying they had heard that the gym had changed hands. It warms my heart,” she said.
Goldstein attended a chamber meeting and is now a member. Nassau County Legislator Donald McKenzie helped Goldstein cut the red ribbon as chamber members Walter Imperatore and Michele Browner cheered the opening along with staff members and friends.
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