2002-06-08 / Columnists

Beachcomber

On Wednesday evening, July 10, The Wave will host a meeting of all those who saw American Airlines Flight 587 in the air prior to its crash. We are sponsoring the meeting at the Beach Club on Beach 116 Street at 7:30 p.m. as a public service. Many residents have indicated that they saw smoke or flame coming from the plane prior to its crash. We hope that others from Brooklyn and Howard Beach, who also saw the plane in trouble, will attend as well.

Sometimes, putting out a newspaper gets downright spooky. Last Monday, The Wave staff shot pictures of the Memorial Day Parade in Rockaway. The photographer shot several floppy disks worth of pictures. On Tuesday morning, the editor used Photoshop to take the pictures off the disk and to save the ones he wanted to use in a separate computerized folder. The art department then went ahead and did a two-page layout from the pictures and the editor added his caption for each photo. The problem is, when the paper came out on Friday, there was a picture on page 35 showing two men who had passed away in the last year or so Rabbi Joseph Weiss and community activist Moe Weinschel. The Wave began to get phone calls telling us that the picture had to be at least two years old. It cannot be. The disk was blank when it went into the camera. The camera shot pictures from this year's parade. Those pictures went into the parade folder and those pictures went into the paper. How did it happen that those two men, dead more than a year, appeared in the pictures? Perhaps you can tell us, because we have not been able to figure it out.

At a recent meeting of the United Community Organization of Broad Channel, a new Board of Directors was elected. The Wave wants to congratulate those community activists. Among those elected were Marty Feeney, Bill Schilling, Jimmy Truden, Donna Willsen and Ann Loundon.

Long-time Rockaway Beach activist Pat McCurry called from Florida to say hello to all of her old friends in Rockaway. She asked that we pass along the message that she is "lovin it" in the Sunshine State.

The Brooklyn Cyclones, a Class A baseball team that is a Mets affiliate, will soon begin its second season at KeySpan Park in Coney Island. While seats for the first few games are already sold out, there are tickets available for games later in the season. At $10 for the most expensive ticket, the game is the best sports value around.

It is West Nile time in New York City once again. The city is attempting to get rid of standing pools of water and to track dead birds that are found around the city. Those finding a dead bird should call 1-877-968-4692. Those who want to report standing pools of water should also call 1-877-968-4692. You can also report either dead birds or standing water to the New York City Department of Health's website at www.nyc.gov.html/doh.

Senator Malcolm Smith reminds local residents that eleven-digit telephone dialing will soon be upon us. Beginning in February of 2003, all residents in the 718 area code will have to dial 1 + the area code + the seven digit number even when calling a neighbor. The change is due to the proliferation of phones, computers, faxes and the like.

American Airlines puts out a newsletter for Belle Harbor residents to let them know that is being done in the wake of the crash of flight 587. The newsletter promised that Beach 131 Street would be reopened "before the Memorial Day weekend." That did not happen. The company will also plant trees along the street as soon as it opens.

Although Howard Beach was split in half, along Cross Bay Boulevard, by the new House of Representative lines, Rockaway is relatively untouched by the plan. Those who wanted to see Rockaway back under one representative, however, will be disappointed for another ten years. Greg Meeks will now represent the "old section" of Howard Beach, while Tony Weiner will represent the "new section."

Like to look at vintage, WW II aircraft? Like to see the Lunar Module? Want to sit in a cockpit mockup of an A-6 Intruder or a commercial airliner? Get yourself, your children and your grandchildren to the Cradle of Aviation Museum in Uniondale. The museum, on the campus of Nassau Community College, is right next to the Nassau Coliseum off Hempstead Turnpike. It is a don't-miss visit for anybody interested in flying.

Chamber of Commerce executive director Liz Sulik has lined up a big event for August. Rockaway will once again host a kite festival at Riis Park, part of the Gateway National Park. The event will take place on August 24 and 25, but it is never too early to mark your calendars for an event such as this one. The event will include kite-making seminars for kids, a professional contest and just plain kite-flying for enjoyment for the rest of us.

A number of firefighters who live in Rockaway and others who work here have written to The Wave recently to argue against the city council decision to build a new firehouse EMS building on Beach 48 Street, north of the elevated structure rather than build the new structure at the firehouse's present site at Beach 58 Street, south of the elevated structure. We have to wonder why so many professionals are against the move while their bosses and some local politicians favor the move. It might be interesting as well as instructional to learn who owns that piece of Beach 48 Street property. The Wave is working on that as you read this.

There are at least three events that you should check out this weekend. First, there is the Relay for Life, a cancer fundraiser at Beach Channel High School. Secondly, there is Art Frenzy at Fort Tilden. Third is the Peninsula Hospital Center's annual Family Health Fair at the hospital grounds.


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