2006-07-28 / Columnists

Chamber Chat

By Joanie Omeste, Executive Director, Rockaway Chamber of Commerce

JOANIE OMESTE Here at the Chamber of Commerce everyone is quite happy that people are enjoying Tribute Park. In order to keep the Park as lovely as it was the day it opened takes a lot of hard work and commitment. To that end a stewardship of the park has been formed, Friends of Tribute Park, Inc. This organization will take over the day-to-day operations of the park as the Chamber exits from its establishment role.

A great group has been put together consisting of Bernie Warnock, Dan Mundy, Dolores Orr, Nadia Murphy, John Lepore, Valerie West, Gian Jones, Ira Seplow, Geoff Rawling, Boomie Pinter and Kevin O'Mealy. We also have the expertise of non-voting members on the committee, Assemblywoman Audrey Pheffer, Councilman Joe Addabbo, Jonathan Gaska, LeRoy Temple, Joanne Shapiro and myself. We do plan to start forming working committees and inviting other people to serve and will reach out to see if anyone is interested shortly.

As an exciting kickoff and a nice way to introduce everyone, the Friends of Tribute Park Committee is holding the first event in the Park... "Sunset in Tribute Park," on Thursday, August 24 from 6:30 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. (rain date Friday, August 25) Sunset in Tribute Park is generously sponsored by Arverne by the Sea - Benjamin Beechwood with entertainment sponsored by Rockaway Music and Arts Council.

This event is a fundraiser designed to raise money for the extra maintenance this delicate park needs.

Tickets are $35 and we encourage you to purchase tickets in advance. You can do this by contacting Friends of Tribute Park at (718) 989-2453, or e-mailing friendsoftributepark@msn.com (this is an e-mail address and not a website).

At the event, we will also be kicking off brick sales again. The prices of bricks will be $175 for a 4" x 8" brick and $250 for an 8" x 8" brick. Order forms will be available at the event. You can also purchase bricks by e-mailing the above address as well. Bricks purchased in 2006 will be installed in the Park in the spring of 2007. We are still working on getting the replacement bricks installed and that will happen shortly.

The Chamber was invited by the Borough President's Office and the New York Mets Organization to promote the New York Kite Festival at a press conference held at the Diamond Club in Shea Stadium. The press event, "Discover Queens," promoted Queens events throughout August. We were very proud to be participating with Jamaica Jams (August 4 & 5), the Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival (August 12 & 13), US Open (August 28-Septemebr 10) and, of course, the Amazin' Mets. ....And that's not all! On August 4 the Mets facing the Philadelphia Phillies is hosting "Queens Night" when all Queens residents (with proof of ID) can purchase discounted tickets. Commemorative 1986 tee shirts will be given out to the first 25,000 people.

New York Kite Festival kite flyers have been invited to participate in the pre-game show beginning at 6:00 p.m. where they will take the field for some high flying fun. For more information go to www.discoverque ens. info or www.nymets.com or, of course, call the Chamber office.

Many thanks go out to Rockaway kite flyers Dorothy Wagner and Jason Benedict who were invaluable decorating the entire room with giant kites and fielding any kite flying questions. Dorothy, also an extremely talented musician of the duet Aerial Acoustics, will be performing at the Kite Festival and also the U.S. Tennis Open. The New York Kite Festival will be held on Saturday and Sunday August 19 and 20 at Riis Park Bay 9 and is sponsored by Keyspan, Port Authority of New York & New Jersey, Councilman Joe Addabbo, the Queens Borough Preident's Office and Queens Economic Development Corp. For more information call the Chamber office at (718) 634-1300.

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