Kayak Run A Success

And they’re off. Some of the 58 boats after the cannon blast start
And they’re off. Some of the 58 boats after the cannon blast start

On Saturday, July 25, 66 kayakers and four paddle boarders enjoyed a glorious morning of family fun in the 11th annual Port Washington–Manhasset Bay Kayak Run. Cosponsored by the Community Chest of Port Washington and the Town of North Hempstead, with major assistance from Atlantic Outfitters and the North Shore Kayak Club, the Kayak Run was once again sponsored by the Peter & Jeri Dejana Family Foundation.

Participants of all ages enjoyed the beauty of Manhasset Bay as they launched their boats from the Town Dock, Manorhaven Beach and other locations around the bay to complete the five-plus mile loop.

Vera Allen (center), at 85, the senior paddler, posing with Edna Turner, founder of North Shore Kayak Club, and Joel Ziev, cochair of Kayak Run and Community Chest board member, in front of the first place prize—a brand new kayak
Vera Allen (center), at 85, the senior paddler, posing with Edna Turner, founder of North Shore Kayak Club, and Joel Ziev, cochair of Kayak Run and Community Chest board member, in front of the first place prize—a brand new kayak

Dr. Joel Ziev, Community Chest board member and Kayak Run codirector, said, “the Kayak Run is not a race; it is a great way for novices and experienced kayakers alike to get out on Manhasset Bay. Beginners can feel safe kayaking longer distances knowing that assistance is always nearby. The town’s bay constable patrol boats and Port’s fire boat were terrific, keeping a watchful eye as participants completed the course. We also had wonderful volunteers who provided encouragement from land as the kayakers passed each checkpoint.” Passing the checkpoints along the way qualified the kayakers for raffle prizes.

Rising juniors at Schreiber, Justin Harnick and Mitchell Levine in their Cobra Tandem from Atlantic Outfitters.
Rising juniors at Schreiber, Justin Harnick and Mitchell Levine in their Cobra Tandem from Atlantic Outfitters.

Grand prize winners Mark and Amy Frankel from Great Neck won a brand new kayak. Other raffle prizes included fishing tackle and boating gear donated by John Thompson of Atlantic Outfitters.

The proceeds of $5,000 from the Port Washington-Manhasset Bay Kayak Run benefit the Community Chest’s 26 grantee organizations serving Port Washington residents.


Julie Meer Harnick is the executive director of the Community Chest of Port Washington.

Shrubs From The Back Wall

Variagated kerria
Variagated kerria

We often see azalea, lilac and forsythia flowering in the spring or spirea flowering in the summer, but there are many other lesser-known shrubs to consider planting in your garden this fall for next year’s growing season. Shrubs, often the anchors of your garden borders, come in many different shapes, sizes, colors and flowering attributes. It is up to you to decide which flowering spring and summer shrubs will please your eye and enhance your garden. Here are a few favorites which beautify my garden.

Vitex agnus-castus var. latifolia, otherwise known as the “Chaste Tree,” is a deciduous shrub that can grow in full sun to 25 feet tall without pruning, making it a wonderful selection for the back of the border. Its fragrant, delicate, palm-like leaves and violet-blue summer flowers have graced southern borders for many years and more recently has become sought after here in the North.

Callicarpa berries
Callicarpa berries

Kolkwitzia amabilis “Pink Cloud” beauty bush is another deciduous shrub that makes a splash in the back of a sunny border with an abundance of pale pink tubular flowers that open in late spring attracting pollinators of all varieties. The shrub grows well in most soil types. It is a multi-stemmed, vase-shaped bush, growing to 10 feet, which then becomes a striking fountain of pink arching branches.

Chaenomeles superba “Cameo” quince growing to three feet or chaenomeles japonica “Jet Trail” growing to six feet are two deciduous shrubs that do well in sun or part shade. Cameo is a thornless species with peach-pink flowers. Jet Trail has white flowers in the spring followed by bright yellow quince fruit in the late summer. Many people find that when cooked the fruit tastes like apple; the fruit is often used to make quince jelly.

Kerria japonica “Picta” lights up the late spring border with its profusion of bright golden yellow flowers and gray-green leaves outlined in white on a spreading shape. In full sun it will grow to five feet with graceful, arching branches.

Quince cameo (Photos by Josephine Borut)
Quince cameo
(Photos by Josephine Borut)

Clethra alnifolia “Ruby Spice” summersweet produces sweetly fragrant rosy-pink blooms in late summer. This is an upright, hardy, native shrub growing to six feet while tolerating a wide range of garden conditions. The abundance of fluffy spikes of delicate flowers in full sun attracts many pollinators.

Callicarpa dichotoma “Purple Beautyberry” is a deciduous woodland shrub grown mainly for its clusters of small purple berries that look like a string of beads tangled in the branches. These berries start out as tiny pale pink flowers in the summer. The long, arching branches give this shrub a graceful shape in the autumn. The berries are not a wildlife favorite, but will attract birds in late winter. There is a white flowering version, C. dichotoma “Albafructus” which will add a showy display to your autumn border. Another variety worth considering is Callicarpa americana, a native shrub with the same beautiful purple berries. All Callicarpa are good additions to a Xeriscape garden.

In addition, look for some of the following shrubs to enhance the color, loveliness and fragrance of your garden: Calycanthus (Carolina Allspice) “Aphrodite,” Abelia schumannii “Bumblebee,” Exochorda macrantha “The Bride” pearlbush, Physocarpus opulifolious (Ninebark) “Dart’s Gold,” Kalmia latifolia (Mountain Laurel) “Freckles,” Deutzia gracilis “Chardonnay Pearls,” Daphne burkwoodie “Somerset” and Viburnum burkwoodie “Mohawk.”

Kolkwitzia amabilis (Photos by Josephine Borut)
Kolkwitzia amabilis (Photos by Josephine Borut)

Ask our local nurseries to carry some of the above shrubs to add to the biodiversity on Long Island. A wide range of different plants will help our butterflies, bees, moths and birds to survive and flourish, thereby bringing back beauty, abundance and bird song. Enjoy your blooming gardens.

The Long Island Horticultural Society meets each month on a Sunday afternoon at 1:30 p.m. at Planting Fields Arboretum in Oyster Bay. The organization does not meet during July and August. The next meeting will be Sept. 20. The speaker will be Rusty Schmidt, a landscape ecologist and author, whose expertise is the use of native plants and storm water management systems. His topic is “Introduction to Rain Gardens.” For more information, go to www.lihort.org.

Josephine Borut is a past board member of the Long Island Rose Society and the Long Island Horticultural Society. She is a current member of the American Rose Society and the Long Island Horticultural Society.

Plant A Row A Success

Plantarow081215ABy Emily Shlafmitz

It’s hard to miss the 50 painted flower pots located around Port Washington, each with a unique, intricate design and overflowing with fresh plants. These pots are part of the Plant a Row for the Hungry campaign, which seeks to provide those in the community who have inadequate food supplies with fresh, nutritious produce. As Marvin Makofsky, chief vegetable garden executive for Plant a Row in Port Washington, explained, people often donate nonperishable goods to the hungry, but it is rare to hear about families in need receiving healthy vegetables to eat. For this reason, Makofsky brought the idea of Plant a Row to Port Washington six years ago. Originally, the program was set to encourage people to donate excess produce they had grown in their gardens, but the painted planters that are now visible all around Port Washington have become a part of the campaign this year. Continue reading “Plant A Row A Success”

Port Students Invited To Showcase

The nonprofit organization The Gateway presents “Ballroom With a Twist” on Thursday, August 13, at 8 p.m. in Patchogue featuring students from Sousa Elementary and Dancing With the Stars pros Chelsie Hightower, Anna Trebunskaya, Dmitry Chaplin and special guest Gilles Marini, of Sex and the City, Brothers and Sisters, Modern Family and Devious Maids. Finalists from So You Think You Can Dance and American Idol will also be featured.

Port students, along with students from across Long Island, representing Dancing Classrooms Long Island (DCLI) will open the show with a medley of dances.

Sixth-grader Jacqueline Atchley said, “It’s pretty exciting. I’ve never performed in an event like this before.” She rehearsed a lot to learn all of the steps.

DCLI is a social development artist-led residency program geared for students in grades four through eight, regardless of background or experience. The subject of the documentary Mad Hot Ballroom, the program uses the vehicle of ballroom dancing to build students’ social and emotional literacy, confidence, self-esteem and respect for others. For more information, visit www.dancingclassroomsli.org or call 646-345-5234.

The Gateway: Performing Arts Center of Suffolk County (PACSC) produces and presents high-caliber theater and performing arts events as well as engages and trains the next generation of artists. PACSC enriches the cultural lives of Long Island communities, providing a local alternative to Broadway.

Patchogue Theatre for the Performing Arts is located at 71 East Main Street; Patchogue. For tickets, call 631-286-1133 or visit www.gatewayplayhouse.org.