2013-02-22 / Columnists

Ideas Wanted

By Rick Horan

Well, the ideas are flowing once again. Some have been edited down for space, others have requested anonymity, but all are being shared in the hope they will help to make Rockaway a better place in which to live and work. Here they are for your consideration and comments.

Make Parks open a website for all the work being done on the beach: daily, weekly, monthly even yearly. They could keep it up and running once the boards are back to post who is in charge of the rest rooms, how many times they pick up the garbage cans on beach (not enough), etc. This way there would be a record of it and you would not have to go to these meetings and listen to a bunch of nuts. -Anonymous submission

RH: Better ongoing, communication between Parks and the community would go a long way.

I don't have a new idea. I have an old idea. I remember the weekly fireworks display that was sponsored by Rockaway's Playland. (was it Wednesday or Saturday nights at 9 p.m?) It used to bring people out of their houses and up to the boardwalk. I was a bored teenager then and pretended that I wasn't impressed, but I went. It was something to do, and everyone else was there with me. It was a family event, so bored teenagers could congregate while their parents and younger siblings looked on…. Vicky Sabato

RH: Events like fireworks are just what we need to remind us why we live here. While we are having fun and celebrating life on the beach we can share ideas as to how to improve the place.

We should start the summer with a special event to celebrate the resilience of NYC after the storm. We should make it clear that everyone is invited, but especially try to draw back the volunteers (such as members of the Church of Latter Day Saints) who have helped us so much. We could encourage residents to host "thank you" parties that day, inviting back people who helped them directly. Other participating groups (such as places of worship or schools) could also host "thank you" parties. We could organize a parade honoring the people who helped Rockaway (including Rockaway residents such as the volunteer firefighters), and encourage businesses to have discounts throughout the day. We could urge all the residents to put up signs on their fences, in their windows and balconies, thanking those people or organizations who helped them. Just as there are stars throughout the neighborhood now with messages of perseverance, the signs would be messages of thanks.

This event would have several purposes: 1. To say thank you as a community to those people who did so much for us; to bring them back when our situation is not so desperate and they can get a better sense of the community they helped; and to make them feel that they are part of our community now 2. To start shaping our community's image ourselves. We see our community as a jewel, the Hamptons of New York City, and we want to share that with the rest of the city. 3. To make our story part of the New York story of resilience, rather than a story of desperation, or of people stubbornly clinging to an area that nature wants us to abandon 4. To attract people to the area - if transportation is still a problem, we might not get as many visitors this summer as we are hoping for Jocelyn A. Smith

RH: Great idea Jocelyn! We owe so much to individuals and groups who gave their time and money to help us.

This summer would be the perfect time to say “thanks!”

Ideas Wanted will be running a special section devoted to the stupidest, most ridiculous, time-wasting intersections in Rockaway. I’ve already got several in mind. How about you? Send them to Rickhoran@IdeasImprov.com

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