Neighbors In The News

(Photo courtesy of the
Gold Coast Arts Center)


The Mineola Athletic program congratulates Ericson Velasquez. Velasquez has been one of the hardest working athletes to come through the Mineola Athletic program. He is a self-motivated and focused individual who values his teams’ accomplishments and the relationships that he has built with his teammates. As a five year member of the wrestling program, Velasquez found success as he set his sights on lofty goals this year. Velasquez placed second in the 195 weight class in Nassau and qualified for the New York State Wrestling Tournament where he placed eighth overall in the state.

Velasquez was an All-Conference football player this year for the Mustangs. After two years playing the game, he excelled as a defensive player. Velasquez will be attending Hofstra University in the fall where he has also committed to wrestling as part of Hofstra’s Division 1 wrestling program. We are sure that he will be as dedicated as a member of the Hofstra Pride as he was a Mustang.


The Village of New Hyde Park Tree Committee along with the New Hyde Park Ladies Lions Club recently planted a tree in Memorial Park. The club generously donated the tree as they have annually for the last four or five years. The planting commemorates Arbor Day and the villages’ status as a Tree City USA.


It’s been more than two months since the school community came together physically, but every school day at this time, the students know that their classmates are joining them in the same prayer separated by space, not in spirit. The words “We, at St. Joseph School, are a Catholic community of faith…”, have more meaning than ever before and exemplify the outstanding job the school’s administrators and teachers have done to keep the school community united and hopeful during this difficult time in which schools are learning to educate their students without actual classrooms. St. Joseph School has demonstrated a definite advantage in this crisis due to its already broad use of technology prior to March for not only the middle school students, but across all grade levels.


The district celebrated the closing chapter of the Class of 2020’s high school career by hosting a drive-by parade. Students and their families were in their cars and lined up around the corner of the Middle-High School to give a final wave as they drove by. Staff and administrators were stationed outside the school with congratulatory signs and lawn decorations. Students wore their black senior T-shirts and decorated their cars with Carle Place pride or the future colleges and universities they will be attending.


When the Jericho students arrived at Huntington Hospital, Shelat and her friends received a surprise from New York State Senator Jim Gaughran. Gaughran, who represents Jericho, presented Shelat with an official proclamation to showcase his appreciation for her efforts.


A group of high school students from Island Trees High School in Levittown just competed in the nation’s only STEM/health science competition, the 2020 NSPC Health Science Competition, which is designed to promote and inspire student interest in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM), as well as health care careers. While other competitions have stopped or were postponed in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the NSPC Health Science Competition went forward and was held virtually with an award presentation on the NSPC Facebook page on Monday, June 15.

The competition, now in its second year, is exclusively for Long Island high schools, with record participation of more than 280 students from 37 high schools across Nassau and Suffolk counties, who competed for $82,000 as they presented their self-designed projects addressing and solving health-related challenges to judges specializing in STEM and health science.


Oyster Bay Town Supervisor Joseph Saladino joined with colleagues and town highway and building officials to commence the demolition of a long-dilapidated zombie home in Massapequa. The longtime eyesore was recently court-granted for demolition following multiple complaints from neighbors in the community. The town received court permission to fully inspect the property six months ago after numerous code violations issued upon the property owner went unanswered. The building was found to be in very poor condition, with overgrown vegetation, excessive wear on the roof, trash strewn both inside and out, rotting walls, odors and overall unsanitary conditions. Upon the town’s survey, a request was made to the court to proceed with demolition and the court granted the request.


A portion of Underhill Road has a new name. Nassau County Legislator Joshua Lafazan announced an area between Jackson Avenue and Queens Street will officially renamed later this month in honor of beloved Syosset World War II veteran and community leader Gus Scutari, who died in April at the age of 99.

“By celebrating Gus Scutari’s life, we are honoring a patriot who embodied the spirit of courage through his selfless service and willingness to fight fearlessly for a better future,” Lafazan said. “My hope is that we never forget the sentiment behind these words – that to pass on freedom to the next generation is not a given, but rather a sacred duty that we all must protect.”


Town of Oyster Bay Councilman Steve Labriola and Councilwoman Laura Maier recently announced a partnership with the New York Blood Center to collect donations on Monday, June 29, to help hospitals meet the ongoing and pressing need for blood during the coronavirus pandemic. The blood drive will take place from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. at the Hicksville Athletic Center (167 S. Broadway, Hicksville). All donors will receive ‘Free Blizzards’ vouchers for Dairy Queen, which can be redeemed at their Massapequa, Levittown, Huntington or East Northport locations. The town’s blood drive will operate by appointment only, with no walk-in donations accepted. Social distancing and sanitary protocols will be in place to maintain the health and safety of all donors. To qualify as a blood donor, a person must between the ages of 17 and 75 years old (16 with parental permission and 76 or older with a doctor’s note), weigh at least 110 pounds and not have donated blood within the last 56 days. Anyone who received a tattoo within the past 12 months is ineligible to donate. It is recommended that volunteers eat well (low fat) and drink fluids in the days before the blood drive. For additional information regarding the town’s blood drive, contact the town board office at 516-624-6304. Sign up at to make an appointment to donate blood at this blood drive.


Farmingdale State College recently had a CAR-mmencement event to celebrate the spring 2020 graduating class, giving graduates an opportunity to make a final drive-through of the campus. Roughly 350-plus graduates registered for the ceremony and assembled in Lot 3 beginning at 10 a.m., in decorated vehicles with their names written on the passenger side of their vehicles. At 11 a.m., the graduates left Lot 3 and paraded to Farmingdale President Dr. John S. Nader’s house as 150 Farmingdale faculty and staff lined the roadway to cheer the graduates on. Nader read the names of graduates as they passed by his house. Graduates wore masks and did not leave their vehicles. Members of the Alumni Association placed a souvenir package on the hood of each vehicle.


The Gold Coast Arts Center invites the public to experience the fun and excitement of camp from home. The Gold Coast Arts SummerArts 2020 virtual camp is the perfect way for children to spend their summer safely at home while having fun creating masterpieces through exciting live and interactive arts classes, and learning new skills in computer aided design and technology.

Online camps offer a balanced schedule with structured, week-long sessions for kids and teens ages 6 to 16. Each camp session will boost personalized learning and bonding with new friends as we are limiting camp to only 10 students per instructor. To select the option best suited for your child, visit for more information.


On Thursday, June 4, the Manhasset-Lakeville Fire Department elected a new Chief of Department. William “Benny” Mazurkiewicz, of M-LFD Company 3, in Thomaston, was elected to the position after serving just more than four years as a deputy chief. Additionally, Joseph Antonelli, of M-LFD Company 4, in Great Neck,  was elected to the position of 4th Deputy Chief. The election was held over Zoom in order to ensure the safety of the membership during the pandemic.


Livingston Development Corp. announced new improvements to the residential development, known as The Villa at Glen Cove, which will be located on the easterly side of Glen Cove Ave., just south of the Glen Cove Boys and Girls Club. While Livingston had submitted to a 216-unit proposal as legally permitted by the zoning code, the company has heard the concerns of the mayor, the city council and members of the community. The company has chosen to withdraw this application and, instead, is making significant improvements to its already approved 176-unit site plan.

While the number of units will now remain at 176, the net number of bedrooms will be reduced by 42. To better accommodate the market, these units will be rentals. In addition to recently adding over half an acre of open space to the development, Livingston has reduced five of the six buildings by one or more stories each. The buildings will now range from two to four stories. Livingston also amended the parking system from a valet stacker system, to traditional self-parking which will accommodate two cars per unit, all while concealed from public view. The development will contain various resident amenities including an indoor swimming pool, fitness center, outdoor recreation space, and more. The development will also have a 10 percent set aside for affordable housing

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