2002-04-06 / Columnists

Beachcomber

Rumors have it that Broad Channel will soon get an extension to its library on Cross Bay Boulevard. The community’s civic association is reportedly also working on a combination community center and senior center on 20 Road and CBB.

The Wave recently got a postage due envelope back from the U.S. Post Office. When workers at the paper opened the envelope, however, they found that the notice of the undeliverable newspaper was from May of 1995. Must be using that pony express system once again.

The Rockaway Music And Arts Council has scheduled its annual Fall Festival for September 28 and 29. Last year’s festival was called off by the mayor due to the September 11 attacks and a concern about more terrorist attacks on public events. Once again, the festival will be held at Riis Park, across from the bathhouse.

It seems that John Baxter has given up, at least for now, on his dream of Rockaway seceding from New York City. Baxter, who ran for City Council and got about three percent of the vote, wanted a public referendum this spring. "We couldn’t get any politicians to join us," Baxter recently told the New York Times. "It’s a dead issue for now." John should realize that it was always a dead issue, that "Rockaway City," does not have the tax base or the wherewithal to make it alone. John’s hope that Rockaway would quickly become part of Nassau County was always a pipe dream.

Eight volunteer ambulance corps in northeast Queens will be receiving grants totaling $40 thousand thanks to state senator Frank Pakvan. The grants will help the volies offset operating expenses. That raises the question of why the state senator who represents this area, Malcolm Smith, has not done the same for the four volie groups that operate within his area. They certainly are worthy of his help and are just as certainly in need of financial assistance.

There is a cautionary tale in the story of an Israeli youth who was present when a teenaged suicide bomber set herself off, killing two and injuring dozens of people at an outdoor market in Jerusalem. The boy saw the teenaged Arab women walk up to two or three Arabs who were selling goods in the market and speak quietly to them. The Arabs then packed up their goods and left. He didn’t think anything of it until the bomb went off. He should have. The behavior of the teenaged Arab girl and the other Arab salespeople should have been a tip-off that something was up. Unfortunately, we in New York City are going to have to become aware of such situations ourselves, because we can surely expect that we will one day in the near future experience the kinds of things that are going on in Israel.

One of the most important events in the Rockaway calendar is the Cancer Walk For Life, which will be held at Beach Channel High School on June 8 and 9. There will be a planning meeting for the event on Monday, April 8 at 6 p.m. at the Peninsula Library on Beach 92 Street. The organizers can use your help and this is certainly a worthy event in which to get involved.

There were those who were disappointed by the Channel Two "Sunday Morning" show that featured the story of the Rockaway daffodils last Sunday. Many of the "garden ladies" who helped to plant the bulbs and were present for the taping a week ago had hoped that they would be seen on television. It is sometimes hard to understand the concept that most television shows shoot a couple of hours of tape for a four-minute show. Because of that, most of the tape winds up on the cutting room floor. When Fuji Television from Japan was in Rockaway shooting a Christmas story for its version of "60 Minutes," it shot a good 90 minutes of tape here at The Wave. None of that tape made the cut. It is disappointing, but that is the way that television works. The only local who did make the show was former Battalion 47 Chief Thomas Murphy.

It is good to see that ecumenism is alive and well in Rockaway. The Rockaway branch of Hadassah, a Jewish women’s organization, will soon be presenting an award to Monsignor Martin Geraghty, the pastor of St. Francis de Sales Church. The awards will be presented at the organization’s annual "From The Heart" dinner that will be held at the Silver Gull Beach Club in Breezy Point on May 14.

A District 27 television show featuring the Rockaway Museum will be shown on channel 25 on April 6 and 13 at 2 p.m., on channel 35 (QPTV) on April 8 and 12 at 5 p.m. The show features many local school children and a view of the museum.

Parents throughout the peninsula are responding to the proposed cuts in Rockaway schools detailed in last week’s Wave. At least two petition drives that we know about have been started to let Chancellor Levy and central board officials know that parents want the majority of cuts to come from the bureaucracy rather than from schools. It has been suggested to The Wave that Lew Simon, the self-appointed "Petition King" of Rockaway get involved with the process of stopping the cuts.

Personal watercraft, such as jet skis, waverunners, etc. will be banned from the waters of the Gateway National Recreation Area beginning on April 22. That takes in much of Jamaica Bay. The United States Park Police will enforce the ban.

Baseball is back and we have to sing a couple of bars of "Take Me Out To the Ballgame," because we are so happy to see it return. We are also happy to see the return of the baseball pool at ESPN. It gives the game a focus and gets a baseball aficionado looking at teams other than the locals.


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