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Since its inception 10 years ago, Residents for a More Beautiful Syosset has grown from seven people to over 400 families, advocating for Syosset beautification, pedestrian and vehicular safety, and downtown revitalization thanks to many dedicated people.

The group was formed in 1997 and first met at founder Lorraine Donlon's house. She said at the time, that the group of neighbors "got together to find something to improve and to do something about it other than complain."

One of the first projects that the group tackled was rejuvenating the downtown park where Jackson Avenue and Underhill Boulevard intersect. The group beautified the park, which bears memorials for soldiers of America's 20th century wars and is used for services held by the local VFW and American Legion on Memorial Day.

With the assistance of many local elected officials, the Syosset Fire Department and many volunteers, the Residents group has been able to accomplish many great feats to help beautify Syosset.

Some of these include securing donations for the American flags that line Jackson Avenue for Memorial Day, Flag Day and Independence Day; starting the process for children's playgrounds and local parks to be updated and replaced by the Town of Oyster Bay; planted and maintain the garden at the Syosset Post Office; worked with Nassau County Police to identify and remove graffiti in the neighborhood and hosted a Pedestrian Road Show with federal, state, county, and town representatives in an attempt to correct conditions for improved safety and traffic flow throughout our town.

"We are active with the Chamber of Commerce, other Syosset civic groups, and the United Civics of North Oyster Bay presenting a unified force of homeowners and businesses on major issues that affect us all. We attend town meetings regarding zoning board, land use issues and open space preservation. Participation in community activities and events like the Village holiday tree lighting ceremony, Syosset pride/cleanup day, Memorial Day parade, Arts and Crafts Fair, Stillwell Preserve patrols," the group's website states.

"Residents' many accomplishments, in its 10 year history, show what can happen when a group works together for the benefit of the community. As Margaret Mead wrote, 'never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed it is the only thing that ever has,'" said Residents' Vice President Laura Schultz.

"They are the epitome of a civic association that is dedicated and intelligent in their approach and innovative in their ideas. They are a great asset to the Syosset community," said Nassau County Legislator Judy Jacobs.

The next general membership meeting for the Residents group will take place on Thursday, May 8, at 8 p.m. at the VFW Hall, next to Syosset post office, on Queens Street in downtown Syosset. The meeting will feature Legislator Jacobs and a representative from the NC Department of Public Works. The meeting is open to the general public. Bring your questions and concerns about the Jackson Avenue project. Free refreshments will be provided.

Residents is holding its Annual Garden Clean Up and Flower Planting on Saturday, May 17. Volunteers are asked to meet at 10 a.m. at Memorial Park in downtown Syosset. Bring your garden trowels, shovels and garden gloves. The raindate is Sunday, May 18.

To join Residents or for further information, visit www.syosset.org or call 364-2649.


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