2002-08-24 / Columnists


More and more residents have been contacting The Wave to complain about illegally parked cars with police placards in their front windows. Those personal cars, many belonging to officers who are simply in Rockaway to go to the beach, park all day on no-parking blocks and are not ticketed even though the cars of residents are ticketed if their cars are sticking out a little bit into the sidewalks in front of their driveways. One car (sporting a placard) was parked in front of a hydrant and was blocking a handicapped ramp on Seagirt Boulevard. The precinct was called and a cop looked at the car and then drove away without ticketing it. The local captain can't argue that he is simply enforcing the law by keeping surfers out of the water and joggers off the beaches at the same time his officers allow other cops to flout the parking rules with impunity.

The American Cancer Society has reported the results of its survey that shows that 73 percent of New Yorkers are in favor of Mayor Bloomberg's anti-smoking initiatives. That poll was taken, however, before Bloomberg announced that he wants to stop people from smoking on the city's beaches. We wonder what Rockaway people think about that plan.

Latest polls show that Carl McCall has opened up a 16-point lead in his primary race against Andrew Cuomo for the Democratic nomination for Governor of New York State. As early as last April, Cuomo was twenty points up over McCall. Many voters, however, think that it really doesn't matter who the Democrats nominate, that nobody can beat Republican incumbent George Pataki in any case.

Kyle Rote, Jr., was a standout football player for the New York Giants during the late 1950's and early 1960's. The wide receiver was a widely popular player both with the fans and with the other players on the team. He still holds the team record for touchdown reception in one year. When he died recently, however, there was little note of his passing on television or on the sports radio stations. It is a shame that nobody seems to have a feel for history anymore.

The final Rockaway Music and Arts Council (RMAC) Sunset Picnic Concert will be held this Sunday, August 25 at 6 p.m. at Fort Tilden. The concert will feature "A Tribute to Frank Sinatra." This has been a highly-successful season for the RMAC's concert series, drawing tens of thousands to the Gateway National Park venue, and its officers should be congratulated for doing a great service for the Rockaway community.

Naming streets after deceased residents is what the City Council does best and most often. The names of 71 victims of the September 11 terrorist attack will soon be memorialized with street name changes throughout the city, although most of them will come in Staten Island. Local Councilman Joe Addabbo is the sponsor of the bill that will make those 71 changes and more. Addabbo says that councilpersons can still add names to the list and that he personally plans to do so. The local community board recently took up a number of the name change proposals for the peninsula and for Broad Channel.

The multicultural fair being held today (Saturday, August 24) at Bayswater Park (Beach Channel Drive and Bay 32 Street) promises to be one of the premier events of the summer. The hope of the fair's organizers is that it will bring all segments of Rockaway, from West Lawrence to Breezy Point, together for a common experience.

Ten years ago this week, The Wave reported that Sean Ringgold, a student at JHS 180 in Rockaway Beach, had been designated by Borough President Claire Shulman as the "most improved student" at the school. Two weeks ago, Ringgold, now grown, won the citywide championship arm wrestling championships on the boardwalk at Beach 116 Street.

The Wave will be publishing a special section dedicated to those who were lost on September 11, 2001 in the upcoming September 7 issue. While commercial advertising will not be accepted for that special section, we will accept a limited number of memorial ads for those who were lost.

At a recent meeting with politicians and community leaders, invited to the meeting by Captain Charles Talamo, the commanding officer of the 100 Precinct, the CO said that no local residents had received tickets or summonses for surfing when lifeguards were not on duty. That does not jibe with what this paper has been told in the past. If you are a local resident and have been ticketed, summonsed or warned off the beach or out of the ocean, please contact The Wave and tell us your story.

The annual Stunt Kite Championships will be only one of the major events at Riis Park this weekend when the Rockaway Kite Festival takes over the beach. If you want to see some of the most spectacular kites ever created, be at Riis Park on Saturday and Sunday for the big show. There will even be a Kid's Kite Camp where children will be able to decorate and fly their own kites.

There are lots of candidates challenging Michelle Titus in the upcoming Democratic primary for the Assembly seat in the eastern part of Rockaway. We are inviting those candidates, and anybody else who has filed petitions for public office this year, to contact The Wave to discuss their platforms and their hopes and dreams for Rockaway.

The Broad Channel Volunteer Fire Department will be hosting its annual carnival this weekend at the Cross Bay Boulevard site where it plans to build a new firehouse. All of the proceeds from the carnival will go towards the building fund for the new, much-needed firehouse.

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