2012-09-14 / Columnists

Looking Backward

What The Wave Said 20 Years Ago...

Congressman Charles Schumer took a tour of Gateway National Recreation Area this week and came away promising $6 million for the rehabilitation of the aging park. Most of the money, officials say, will be used for the bathhouse and the historic clock on the boardwalk.

After months of planning, the longawaited Rockaway Music and Arts Council Fall Festival will begin this weekend at Fort Tilden. The two-day show draws thousands of visitors each year.

The Queens District Attorney remains mum on whether or not he will prosecute the man who assaulted Rockaway resident Phil McManus, an off-duty NYPD officer who was attempting to make a call from a phone booth prior to going on duty. McManus, assigned to the 101 Precinct in Far Rockaway, went to a phone booth near St. Camillus Church and found a man inside. The man became angry that McManus was waiting to use the phone and assaulted the off-duty cop. Local hospitals are assisting hospitals in Florida in the wake of Hurricane Andrew by sending ambulances and crews to the beleaguered state.

The Irish Circle restaurant on Beach 102 Street and Rockaway Beach Boulevard celebrated its tenth anniversary this week with lots of special events and food specials.

Broad Channel’s Mardi Gras and Parade was once again a success this year, with many from the island community enjoying the two-day event. Floats such as the “Blast Supper” and “M*A*S*H” enlivened the parade.

Mickey Carton, a Rockaway Irish Icon and renowned musician, died this week after a short illness. Carton was wellknown for his performances on the peninsula and for his support of Irish interests.

30 Years Ago...

Efforts to save the vacant hotel at 2400 Seagirt Boulevard in Far Rockaway were unsuccessful last week as the wooden structure burned to the ground. Called the “Phoenix House,” because it was last used by that anti-drug group, the hotel had been one of the grand hotels that once lined the Rockaway shore.

Chilly water and a shark alert postponed for a short time the Rockaway Ocean Swim last week, but 19 intrepid swimmers completed the course.

Congressman Joe Addabbo will speak at the Men’s Club of the Bayswater Jewish Center this week.

Marion Polichek, the president of the 101 Community Council, has announced that the organization’s installation will be held at the Bayswater Jewish Center next week.

Seventeen-year-old Rockaway resident Jake Gordon is credited with saving an elderly woman last week, when he grappled with a mugger who was trying to snatch the woman’s pocketbook at a building at 1302 Redfern Avenue in Far Rockaway.

With the closing of the movie theater in Cedarhurst, Rockaway residents are hoping for an expansion of the Surfside Theater. It is now the only game in the area.

City Councilman Walter Ward has passed along complaints about the service on the Green Bus Line to the company’s president. “Buses never come on time, pass riders by even if there is room on the bus and the air conditioning seldom works,” Ward told company president William Cooper.

40 Years Ago...

A testimonial dinner in honor of Benjamin Waldbaum, recently retired principal of PS 225, will be held on November 6 at Leonard’s. Waldbaum was the school’s principal for 16 years.

Jean Larkin, who is heading the Rockaway Coalition Campaign for George McGovern, has reported that her candidate has lots of support in Rockaway.

There is a growing sentiment in Rockaway that parking meters be installed along Shore Front Parkway in light of the reduction in parking revenues in other parts of the west end.

It is understandable that many residents are angry that they and their friends have to park several blocks from where they live because people down for the day to use the beach have taken up all of the parking spaces.

50 Years Ago...

Dick Geist, the president of Rockaway’s Playland, has set the date for next year’s Fireman’s Parade for September 7, the day following Labor Day.

If the urban renewal plan for Arverne and Edgemere becomes a reality, what will happen to all of those businesses that recently built new facilities in the area after being forced from the Hammels area? When municipal court justice Angelo Graci made his recent reference to developing Rockaway as a “miniature Jones Beach,” he must have been referring to the oceanfront itself.

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