2006-01-06 / Community

Broad Channel Bits

By Liz Guarino

This is the first column in 2006. Happy New Year everybody—whether you slept through the midnight revelry, quietly celebrated in front of the TV with Dick Clark, greeted January 1 with a glass of champagne in one hand and a noisemaker in the other or took a brisk walk later along the beach with the American Littoral Society—I hope you enjoyed bringing in the New Year! Here is hoping for a good year, one with a minimum of angst.

Mark your calendar! The American Legion Ladies Auxiliary will be hosting a Spaghetti and Meatball Dinner on January 15. Transportation will be available. More information such as time, etc. will be in a future column.

St. Virgilius School Advisory Board needs the help of community members. The Board is looking for people with backgrounds in technology, marketing, finance or advertising to volunteer their time and talents to ensure the continued existence of the school. Anyone interested in volunteering can call Pat at 718 634-5085.

One of our neighbors has offered a fundraising opportunity to the online shoppers in the community for St. Virgilius School. For the rest of this month and all of January and February “Big Blue Turtle will donate 50% of its earned commission” to the school; specific steps need to be followed to ensure the donation. To browse the website to find a store you would like to shop at, go to http://www.bigblueturtle.com. You can email the CEO, Matthew Schilling at MSchilling@bigblueturtle.com for further details on how to take part in this fundraiser.

Books and Bagels book discussion group will be held on Friday, January 20 at 10 a.m. in the Library. The discussion will be on “Say Ooh La Lah” by Robin Jones Gunn. All are welcome to attend the discussion. (If the book selections are not appealing, attend and make a presentation of a book you have read and enjoyed.)

St. Virgilius P.A. is selling 20/10 chances. The first drawing will be held on February 1, 2006. They will continue for a total of 10 weeks. Weekly prizes to be awarded will be $200, $100 and $50; there will also be a $250 Easter prize. For 10th week prizes there will be one $250 and two $500 prizes. Winners can repeat. Tickets are $20 and are available by calling Karen at 718 945-5823, at the school during school hours and at the rectory during office hours.

If you had a real Christmas tree, it is time to recycle it. You can do this in one of two ways: take part in DOS’s Mulchfest by bringing your tree to the designated park below on Saturday, January 7 and Sunday, January 8 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. For this area it is the park at Shore Front Parkway and Beach 94 Street. If you want to see the tree get chipped (children really enjoy this!), you will have to go to Forest Park Bandshell on Forest Park Drive, west of Woodhaven Boulevard. At these places you can get mulch for your yards by bringing a container to put it in. You can also put it at the curb for pick-up by the DOS. Leave the undecorated tree for pick-up at the curb from Wednesday, January 4 through Saturday, January 14. The tree will be chipped and recycled.

 One of our neighbors sent the following email: “Don’t know what to do with all those crazy gifts you received this year from friends and family? You know those gifts: you will never use and can’t return them. Well, why not donate them to a very worthy cause? We will turn them into cash for Cystic Fibrosis. To donate gifts call Erin at 718 318-2330 or Ginger at 718 318-5504. Thank you.”

A couple of neighbors are helping to find a placement for the female dog mentioned last week. Due to a production error, the dog was listed as 40 pounds; in fact, she weighs about 25 pounds.

A couple of changes are in store for all U.S. residents this year: the minimum wage is increasing from $6 to $6.75 an hour. Next year it will climb even higher to $7.15 an hour. The cost of mailing a first class letter will also be increased to 39 cents on January 8, 2006. It cost 37 cents last year. A postcard will cost 24 cents, up one cent from 23. Express mail will cost $14.40 for 8 ounces; this is a 75 cent increase over the old rate. Two pounds of express mail will cost $18.80, an increase of 95 cents. Priority mail will increase 20 cents to $4.05 for 1 pound.

A scam has been making the rounds of email. It tells taxpayers that they are due a refund and asks for the social security number of the person. What really looks genuine about it is that it bounces off an official site before it lands in the bogus site that wants your personal information. It is not the first online scam, but it is one of the best—it looks real! Personal information like your date of birth, social security number or password should not be put into cyberspace nor given over the telephone. If asked for personal information by an unknown person or company, hang up the phone or hit the delete key on the PC.

The first column of 2006 is a good place for words of wisdom from a notable person. Consider these words from a 19 th century Russian author. “If we wait for the moment when everything, absolutely everything is ready, we shall never begin.” – Ivan Turgenev, 1818-1883.

If you have an item of news that you want published in this space, please get the information to me by 9:30 a.m. on the Tuesday before you need the item to appear in The Wave. Please sign your email; like the rest of the newspaper, I cannot publish info that comes without a name.

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