2007-06-29 / Columnists

Simon says...

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

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

Lew M. 
        SimonLew M. Simon

It's quite interesting to see that the Parks Department has $40 million to spend.

Let's start from the beginning of our wish list.

1. Repair Rockaway's beautiful boardwalk. Make it a safe walkway. It would be amazing not to have to worry about a broken board, protruding screws or possibly falling through a hole in the boards.

2. Make major improvements in existing parks and create additional parks for all to enjoy.

3. Bring back summer concerts, which we all enjoyed.

4. Purchase safety equipment for use by lifeguards and install safety ropes and barrels to give swimmers additional safety.

This past Monday evening, Queens Parks Commissioner Dorothy Lewandowski attended the Queens Civic Congress meeting at P.S. 114. I personally lambasted Parks Commissioner Adrian Benepe and Deputy Commissioner Liam Kavanagh for their constant lies and the games played with the hiring of lifeguards for Rockaway beaches.

Why is Rockaway always without enough lifeguards to protect all our beaches? Shame on Mayor Michael Bloomberg for allowing the bait and switch practices of allowing a union officer to control the hiring process for lifeguards. It is quite obvious that Commissioner Kavanagh kisses the backside of a certain union official.

It is time now for our mayor to do the right thing and clean house and adhere to the promises made to our community, to have monitors present during the testing process and a time clock on the wall during time trials for applicants. He must arrange for the hiring of qualified firefighters, police, teachers and other former lifeguards, to see that all beaches are covered and swimmers are protected until at least 8 PM. We can't afford another unfortunate drowning or another lawsuit against the city. Get rid of the Parks Enforcement Program (PEP) workers and hire lifeguards for the jewel of the east coast.

We are excited to announce that by popular demand, the Good Government Regular Democratic Club Atlantic City bus trip has been moved to the Atlantic City Boardwalk Bally Claridge Hotel. Our next trip will be on Saturday, July 21. We leave at 5:30 p.m. and return at 8 a.m. We have eight hours to enjoy and bagels on the bus by Beach Bagels. Now we have many choices of hotels on the boardwalk. Cost is $35 with $20 returned. Reservations and advance payment is required. Call 718-945-1216.

A&J Jewelers on Beach 116 Street will be closed from June 24 to July 23 for renovation. Arlene, one of the owners, thanks everyone for keeping her in their prayers during her serious illness.

We are once again proud to announce that Dancing under the Stars will start on Thursday July 5 at St. Thomas More from 7 to 9 p.m. The park at Beach 84 Street and ShoreFront Parkway will have dancing on Tuesdays from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m., starting on July 10.

The program is presented by Sweet 'N Low and yours truly. All are welcome. It's free. Ellen Connolly of Connolly Dance will be leading line and other dances.

On Sunday afternoon, we had a blast at Charlotte Kulovany's 90th birthday party. Charlotte is one of the finest, most outstanding, active women on the Rockaway Peninsula. Her dad was president of the first Democratic club in Rockaway and her mother was one of the organizers of the first women's Democratic club in Rockaway.

When Charlotte was 16, she won the most popular girl contest in Rockaway. Playland would hold beauty contests and Charlotte would lead them in costume every year. Charlotte is definitely Miss Rockaway. She is super active at the senior clubs at St. Camillus, St Rose of Lima and St. Francis. She has always been active in the Democratic Party.

Over 200 of her family, friends and loved ones paid tribute to Charlotte at her birthday party. Talk about "belle of the ball." Charlotte came up from the ground in an elevator at Russo's On the Bay with her son, Robert, and her daughter, Carol. Talk about grand entrances. We had the honor and privilege to present Charlotte with a proclamation from Senate minority leader Malcolm Smith. A "who's who" of Rockaway guests attended this exquisite affair. Charlotte is absolutely royalty. We all love her dearly. We look forward to her 100th and 120th birthday parties. Charlotte has great spunk, a lot of love and lots of class. Happy Birthday Charlotte.

My dear friend, Maria, has her food truck on State Road in Breezy Point. She now sells 12 different flavors of milkshakes, made with her own recipe. They are strawberry, vanilla, chocolate, Hershey cream, cookies and cream, Reese's cream, chocolate chip, pina colada, Butterfingers pieces, brownies and black and white. Mention that we said the food is good and receive a discount.

Your membership in the Democratic club is welcome. Send your dues to the Good Government Regular Democratic Club at 112-20 Beach Channel Drive, Rockaway Park 11694.

We are deeply saddened by the death of Lorraine Shiel, President of St. Rose of Lima Young at Heart Golden Age Club. Lorraine was a woman of class, status and full of love. She cared for and loved all. For the past 33 years, I personally knew and spent many happy times and laughs with Lorraine. Lorraine was a hardworking, hands-on president, taking everyone's problems and personally helping to find a solution for all. Her no-nonsense style and her class will deeply be missed.

Lorraine was one of the founding members who helped us form the Good Government Regular Democratic Club 20 years ago. She was fed up with the do-nothing, non-caring, political machine. Over the last two years, Lorraine co-chaired our dinner-dance for the Democratic club. We will never find another lady of class like our Lorraine. Our heart is saddened and our tears are strong. Lorraine will be deeply missed. My condolences to her family. It is quite obvious God needed a leader in an angel and chose Lorraine to lead the flock. Our loss is heaven's gain.

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