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Letter to the Editor: Article About Poles

A recent article in the Port Washington News clearly indicated that our community is still seriously concerned about the 80-foot PSEG utility poles on Port Washington Boulevard. One reader commented, “they make me so sad and angry…it looks industrial and ugly.” One other reported, “It was planned and calculated and we had no chance to object…So horrible.”

The town board can still take action and have PSEG begin to remove these utility poles and [place the wires] underground. This would not only improve our streetscape but more importantly it would provide better service to businesses and homeowners.
The board must continue to negotiate with PSEG. Several years ago Residents for a More Beautiful Port Washington and the town board worked together and did just that by convincing the utility to remove the utility poles from Port Washington Boulevard south [of Willowdale] to Campus Drive and have the wires put underground. The town should take that same action now.

—Myron Blumenfeld

Letter to the Editor: Pride in Port


Port Washington News team leading the first Pride in Port parade

The annual Pride in Port tradition will occur on Sept. 19, and with it will be an assemblage of the greatest melting pot of culture, including businesses, schools, organizations and associations, we’ve ever seen since the opening of Main Street School in 1909.

Newcomers to Port should be aware of its rich history that spawned with an idea by the Port Chamber of Commerce and this newspaper nearly three decades ago. Roy Smitheimer (the Chamber of Commerce president at the time and a 1972 Schreiber grad) walked into the office of this newspaper and told me (then, editor, and a graduate of Schreiber the same class as Roy), “Hey, I have a really good idea to implement that involves celebrating the people of Port and bringing everyone together. What does Pride in Port sound like to you?”

The tradition continues to flourish 27 years later. It was in this office that the idea of a Pride in Port essay contest was spawned, along with the idea of holding an adult dance (year one, the dance was held in the Schreiber gym and attended by 350 people, which morphed to 600 people at the Polish Hall in subsequent years). Community leader Barbara Faticone planned all future dances, complete with themes. We also partnered with the AAPW’s Sandy Cardiello and Joe Marro, who wanted to tie-in the new tradition around Schreiber Homecoming. Schreiber Assistant Principal Bob Bartels joined this effort to help us launch a homecoming parade that involved lavish home-built floats representing every school in Port. We also turned to the senior citizen population, recruiting the help of Alicia McCarvill (director of the Manorhaven Senior Citizens Center) to be the cheerleaders at the parade, and encouraged them to hold a senior citizen luncheon at Schreiber on the Pride in Port day. On nearby Weber fields, thousands of school kids enjoyed a field day lead by PYA. The police, clergy and local businesses were also integral parts of the birth of Pride in Port. We also honored past graduates, through a Schreiber Hall of Fame, who were recognized as an athlete in his/her time. And, of course, the Vikings played a fiercely competitive game on the field (it was, remember, Homecoming).

The  got it right when they wrote in an April 2013 article, “Port is the town with a homing signal.” It is truly here in our town that we find that our local culture provides a sense of identity for both our community and residents. This identity facilitates common understandings, traditions and values that are all central to plans of action to improve well-being.

While my years as chairperson of Pride in Port (and once a grand marshal) are behind me, it is with tremendous satisfaction that I see that others have picked up the torch over the past two decades and continued a tradition that is bound to make our younger generations remember what a special town they were privileged in which to grow up.

This former editor is truly proud of Port and equally as proud to call Port my home since birth.

—Andrea Mastrocinque-Martone

For a list of all Hall of Fame inductees, click here.

To learn more about this year’s inductees, click here.

To learn more about the scholarship Pride in Port supports, click here.

To learn more about this year’s honorees, click here.

For more information about the Pride in Port Committee and sponsors, click here.

Concern About Spraying

I am deeply concerned and outraged by the mosquito spraying this town endures each year. It is harmful to our environment and to the health of our residents. While mosquitoes may be annoying, and can potentially carry West Nile virus, spraying a known carcinogen in our backyards is not the answer.

The chemical used to reduce the mosquito population, Resmethrin, is classified by the U.S. EPA as “likely to be carcinogenic to humans” (1). [Read more…]

Bd Of Ed In Washington

Port Washington School District Board of Education trustee Larry Greenstein with Senator Kirsten Gillibrand at the National School Boards Association (NSBA) 2015 Advocacy Institute in Washington, D.C.

Port Washington School District Board of Education trustee Larry Greenstein with Senator Kirsten Gillibrand at the National School Boards Association (NSBA) 2015 Advocacy Institute in Washington, D.C.

Larry Greenstein, a trustee of the Port Washington School District board of education, joined more than 700 school board and state school boards association leaders in Washington, D.C., to advocate for strong public schools for all students.

Greenstein participated in the National School Boards Association (NSBA) 2015 Advocacy Institute. [Read more…]

‘Hidden in Holland’

The Community Synagogue is hosting a unique program, “Hidden in Holland, An Iconic Victim and a Fortunate Survivor.”
The holocaust program includes an informational presentation about Anne Frank, with excerpts from her diary presented by Gloria Glantz, who was a Hidden Child in Poland. Leo Ullman, a fortunate holocaust survivor, speaker and author will share stories of how he and his family survived the increasingly harsh conditions under German occupation. [Read more…]

Some Oppose Bond

A grass roots group has formed—Citizens for School Management—that has set up a website and is collecting donations to use towards measures like advertisements, fliers and generally publicizing its position against the $69.9 million bond proposal the school board will vote on Jan. 13.

Board President Karen Sloan says much thought and deliberation has gone into the bond proposal.

Board President Karen Sloan says much thought and deliberation has gone into the bond proposal.

James Ansel, head of the group, said, “The school board is perpetrating distortions on the community to justify the bond.” [Read more…]

Fresh Produce Welcomed

I would like to thank Marvin Makofsky and the volunteers at Plant a Row, Patty Woods and the volunteers at Grassroots, Bayles Garden Center, and the community of Port Washington for all of the wonderful fresh produce that was so lovingly grown, harvested and delivered to Our Lady of Fatima Food Pantry this summer and fall.

This food was such a special addition to our usual non-perishable foods and our clients were so thrilled to be the recipients of such fresh and tasty produce.

Our pantry was pleasantly overwhelmed all summer long, and even until the beginning of December, with the most varied and delicious selection of produce.

The produce that was delivered to us each week by numerous volunteers was greatly appreciated by all of the families that visit our food pantry.

I want the community to know that receiving the produce not only enriches the diet of our clients, but also lifts their spirits. The hard work and care that went into growing these fruits and vegetables is acknowledged and appreciated by our families and to receive food that was grown with love was an added benefit.

The time and effort that it takes to cultivate the produce and coordinate the harvesting and delivery is greatly appreciated by all.

As Mother Teresa said, “It’s not how much we give, but how much love we put into giving.”

It is clear by the abundance and beauty of all we received that the Port community has fully embraced Mother Teresa’s ideals.

Thank you.

—Sister Kathy Somerville

Director, Our Lady of Fatima Parish Outreach

Taking Pride In Younger Generation

Port Washington Pride arrived at our house today. In contrast to the dismal news we are receiving elsewhere, the school district’s newsletter was an instant picker-upper. For an old guy like me, it was a joy to read.
Schreiber senior Harry Paul deserves kudos and the respect of not just the Union Free School District, but also of our entire community. What a role model! Instead of sitting in a corner, bemoaning his fate, he did something about it. His goal is a noble one: to help children everywhere who are victimized by a condition they were born with. That says a lot about Harry Paul’s values—and values are what determines a person’s character. (Parents take note). [Read more…]

Utility Poles Pose Hazard

Regarding Chuck Idol’s Op-Ed piece (The Truth About the Poison in PSEG’s Poles, Port News, July 16-22) I would like to add that here in the Town of North Hempstead, we are also very concerned with the use and lack of warning signs on utility poles treated with Pentachlorophenol (penta). [Read more…]

More Wrong In Port Than Utility Poles

Tilting at windmills, or utility poles, can be a worthwhile endeavor until it diverts attention from other important matters.
The article, “PSESG Electric Project Now Complete” (Port News, July 2-8) quoted the executive director of Residents for a More Beautiful Port Washington as saying that the new high poles should be taken down and that the utility should pay for their removal. [Read more…]