2008-08-08 / Columnists

Broad Channel Bits

Commentary By Liz Guarino

The great weather earlier this week is favored by a lot of people who dislike the sticky hot days for which everybody braces when August rolls around each summer. In places where it's quite hot all year round, folks rush from their air-conditioned homes to their air-conditioned cars to their air-conditioned offices and at quitting time they reverse the process. It adds up to a lot of rushing around! Here, global warming notwithstanding, only a handful of August days are that hot.

On Sunday, August 10 in the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., beginning birders can take part in "Shorebirds 101," learning how to identify shorebirds. Wear waterproof boots, sun and insect protection. Bring drinking water and binoculars. Advance sign up is required; call 718-318- 4340.

On Sunday, August 24 in the Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. join the "Shorebird Festival." First, walk to the West Pond and look for shorebirds. Then go indoors for a presentation from Don Riepe and Kevin Karlson on the biology, behavior and conservation of shorebirds. After a break for lunch, head over to the East Pond for more shorebird viewing. Waterproof boots are needed by participants. Bring drinking water, sun and insect protection. Advance sign up is required for this daylong event; call 718-318-4340.

Activities for children of all ages will take place in August at the library. Arts and Crafts for children aged 3 to 6 will be held on Monday, August 11 at 2:30 p.m. Children ages 7 to 10 can enjoy Arts and Crafts on Tuesday, August 12 at 2:30 p.m. Both days, crafts will be given out on a first come, first served basis. On Fridays—August 8, 15 and 22 — enjoy playing games from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Play one of theirs or bring your own. On Saturday, August 23 at 3 p.m. enjoy Arts and Crafts at the library.

On Saturday, August 16, the BCAC will be hosting an Irish Festival; from 12 to 8 p.m. at BCAC Memorial Field. An honor guard will open the festival at 12:30. There will be local vendors; artists, jewelry designers, local shop owners; and national Irish novelty vendors. There will be food, raffles and plenty of entertainment: pipe bands, step dancers, and Black 47 will close the show! A small donation is requested.

All proceeds will go to BCAC.

On Saturday, August 23 at 11 a.m. at the library, the Adult Summer Reading Book Discussion Group will discuss, "The Almost Moon," by Alice Sebold, who also wrote "The Lovely Bones."

Broad Channel Athletic Club volunteers are selling $100 chances to win $10,000 — among other cash prizes. Anyone interested in purchasing a chance, please contact Sabrina at 718- 634-4632 or Jessica at 718-318-3806.

A lot of folks are emailing asking where they can get the book, Broad Channel.

According to the book's publisher, books are available through the national chain bookstores of Waldenbooks, Borders and Barnes and Noble. It is available online through Target. com, amazon.com and barnesandnoble .com. Locally, members of the Historical Society will be selling it as well as Wharton's on Crossbay Boulevard and 9th Road. In Rockaway, The Gift is Love on Beach 116 Street, is carrying it. Other places are being planned. More information on this as it becomes available.

If you buy a copy and want it signed, Dan and I will make ourselves available when we are both able; we plan to be at various events, a list of which has not yet been finalized.

Rockaway neighbors and friends will have an event held close to them for their convenience. A book talk, slide presentation and signing event for Images of America: Broad Channel will be held at the Seaside branch of the public library located at 116-15 Rockaway Beach Boulevard at the corner of Beach 117 Street on Monday, August 18 at 6:30 p.m. by the authors of the book. Books will be available for purchase at this event. Owners of books are invited to bring them if they want them signed.

By now, many library-goers have seen the newly renovated inside and outside of the Broad Channel library. It's surprisingly different inside, so much so that one neighbor swore that all materials did not make it back into the library. They are all arranged differently. Only the carousels were kept from the old design; everything else is new. Shelving units, tables and chairs and the living room-like furniture are all new. And the staff space has been re-designed and there are more computers for the public, too. Users of library materials now check out their own books. And the big yellow apparatus in front will check materials it receives back in!

Big changes in a smallish space make the inside of the building seem larger somehow.

Noel Road residents who were home were treated to an unusual noise from a loud power tool and possibly unwanted additions to which to look forward. Two workmen were busily (and noisily) cutting the sidewalks in front of the rectory and across the street on Monday afternoon. A neighbor asked them what they were doing. Cutting the sidewalk, with the piece that they freed to be removed later in preparation for planting trees in the soon-to-be-openings. "What if the person doesn't want a tree in front of their house?" the workmen were asked. Their answer? Call 311 and the city will send someone out to redo the sidewalk the way it was. They left shortly after. Those who plant the trees will make much less noise— but the workmen didn't say when this will occur.

If you have news that belongs in this column, please get the item(s) to me by Tuesday by 9 a.m. of the week in which the item is to appear.

Please sign your email or note; like the rest of the newspaper, I cannot publish info that comes without a name.

Email can be sent to: Lizbcbits@aol.com

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