2002-08-17 / Columnists

Simon Says….

From the Desk of Lew M. Simon,
Democratic District Leader, 23rd A.D. Part B

From the Desk of Lew M. Simon,
Democratic District Leader, 23rd A.D. Part B

This has been a very busy week of meetings, community events and the celebration of my birthday.

On Monday evening we attended the election meeting of the Roxbury People's Association. All the candidates for the Board of Directors addressed the group. It was great not to be a candidate myself and to sit back and enjoy the meeting. We addressed the group and reminded them that we lobbied Mayor Bloomberg and made funding of the insurance for volunteer fire departments a high priority.

On Tuesday evening at the National Night Out Against Crime we started by marching up Beach 116 Street led by the County Tyrone Pipe Band. Joann Marnik sang the National Anthem. We proudly marched behind the Police Explorers unit. We proceeded to Rockaway’s own Beach Club. As usual the Good brothers did a fantastic job. Ellen Connolly and the Connolly dancers performed.

The highlight of the evening was being the host area in the city and having Mayor Bloomberg address us. He let us know the bus strike was over and he congratulated Borough President Helen Marshall for the great job she did. Some of the other dignitaries present included Congressman Gregory Meeks and Anthony Weiner, District Attorney Richard A. Brown, Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly, Assemblywoman Audrey Pheffer, District Leader Frank Gulluscio and the Councilman.

The fireworks were superb with over 15 minutes of glory. Hats off to the 100 Precinct Community Council of which I am an active member. Congratulations to John McLoughlin, Harold and Bernadette Rochelle, Sandee and Jate Doremus, Nancy Woods, Liz Sulik and the gang for a job well done.

At the same time as the National Night Out, the Breezy Point Co-op held their 42nd annual meeting. The Hon. Joseph Dowd served as parliamentarian. Msgr. August Bednartz gave the invocations. Sister Mary Beata led the assembly in singing the national anthem. John Hudson, Chairman of the Board, presided.

Eight candidates were nominated for the Board of Directors with five to be elected. The results are as follows: Barney Cassidy 950 votes, Thomas M. Bach, 926, Joseph Lynch 884, James McVeigh 837, Thomas O'Keefe 670, John V. Hudson 662, Roger Campbell 642 and Frank Maccariola 623. Congratulations to all elected. To new board members, Cassidy, McVeigh and O'Keefe, Best wishes and we know you will do a fine job. To Tom Bach and Joe Lynch, keep up the great work you've done in the past.

Wednesday night was the open meeting of the Rockaway Music and Arts Council. A report was given on past concerts and upcoming events. The RMAC festival will be on Sat. September 28 and Sunday, September 29. Volunteers are needed. If you would like to volunteer, contact my office.

On Thursday evening we attended the Kickoff for the reelection of Congressman Joseph Crowley. Rep. Charles Rangel stated that former Rep. Tom Manton was right when he supported Crowley as his successor. He said Congressman Joseph Crowley is an asset to the Congress. Among the elected officials present were Deputy Borough President Karen Koslowitz, County Chairman Tom Manton, State Senator Toby Stavisky, council members David Weprin and Tony Avella, District Leaders Barbara Jackson, Martha Taylor, Matt Farrell and Chet Szarejko and Ann Dufficy and her son Tim Dufficy, who is a candidate for the Civil Court. County Democratic officers, Law Chair Frank Bolz, Secretary Michael Reich and Jamie Plunkett as well as many other elected officials, community and civic leaders were there.

My good friend Councilwoman Helen Seats sat with me and introduced me to her son, daughter-in-law and grandson. Helen is a special lady with a heart of gold. She is loving, compassionate and a breath of fresh air on the City Council. She is a great example of what a City Council member should be like.

The event of the evening was when Joe Crowley sang a song by the Boss, Bruce Springsteen. This brought warmth and happiness to everyone. What a singer. The music, good and speeches were wonderful. We are proud to lend our name to the reelection of Joe Crowley to Congress.

On Saturday I actually took the time to celebrate my birthday, a day early, with my only living aunt, Yeddy. We spent the day going shopping and ended up with a surprise party thrown by my aunt and cousins.

For many of those who say why don't you find a life, for once in a long time, I took a personal day to enjoy and celebrate my birthday. I actually had no regrets for doing so.

On my birthday on Sunday, I did what I always do and enjoyed the most, working the fields at the RMAC concert and obtaining donations for future concerts. The Rudy Bishop Steel Drum Symphony Orchestra played Caribbean music and many classics including my own theme song. They surprised me by singing Happy Birthday, which embarrassed me so that I turned red like a beet. But let me tell you I enjoyed every minute of it, feeling loved and appreciated.

As we go on to next week, the weather sounds wicked with those three dirty words, hazy, hot and humid.

Our next Atlantic City bus trip will be on Sat., September 21. The cost is $28 with $16 returned. We leave at 5:30 p.m. and return at 8 a.m. If you want to get on the bus, call us. Our office is 112-20 Beach Channel Dr.

We would like to invite everyone to our 15th annual dinner dance of the Good Government Regular Democratic Club. It will be held Thursday, October 10 at Rockaway's Beach Club from 7 p.m. to 11 p.m. We are honoring Harolyn Fritz, Queens Rep for the U.F.T. for outstanding educational leadership, Alphonse Catanese Jr. and Thomas Catanese for community development, Timothy Keenan, Chief BCVFD for community leadership and Daniel O'Brien Youth Officer at the 100th Precinct for leadership. Thomas DaParma, Queens Trustee for the U.F.A. had to decline an award because he will be out of state.

Tickets are $50 per person and include a sit down dinner, DJ and live music. Kosher food is available. To obtain tickets call my office or the chairperson of the dinner, Sara S. Berger.

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