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Tara Conry

Long Island native Tara Conry is newsday.com's Nassau community journalist. A Hofstra University communications graduate, most recently she was a local editor for Patch and previously reported for the New York Daily News, Reader's Digest and SmartMoney. She's earned awards from the Society of Professional Journalists, the Press Club of Long Island and the American Society of Magazine Editors. When not covering Long Island's local communities, Tara enjoys running (often with her Old English Sheepdog by her side), playing soccer and indulging in her love of musical theater.

Dead whale washes ashore in Southampton

A 15-foot dead pilot whale was discovered Sunday,

(Credit: Riverhead Foundation)

A 15-foot dead pilot whale was discovered Sunday on a beach in Southampton near Cryder Lane, according to the Riverhead Foundation for Marine Research and Preservation.

Robert DiGiovanni, the foundation’s executive director and senior biologist, said researchers took a few samples Sunday, and that he was headed back to the beach Monday morning with a crew to conduct a necropsy on the whale.

“We'll...

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Frank Scafuri sings his way through doctor's offices

Frank Scafuri of Rockville Centre, right, and Joey

(Credit: YouTube)

Frank Scafuri has been to doctors’ offices five times in the past nine months, but the 63-year-old Rockville Centre resident isn’t sick.

He shows up to bring a healthy dose of entertainment to the patients.

Since posting a clip of himself on YouTube performing a Broadway show tune in the waiting room of a Williston Park doctor’s office in September, Scafuri has recorded four more videos.

In...

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NBC’s 'The Blacklist' films on Bayville Bridge

Actress Megan Boone, who plays FBI Agent Elizabeth

(Credit: Tara Conry)

Two cars came within inches of a head-on collision Wednesday afternoon on the Bayville Bridge - but it was no accident.

The scene was part of an upcoming episode of NBC’s drama, “The Blacklist,” which stars James Spader.

The Nassau County Police Department shut down the Bayville Bridge for five midday hours, and filming started hours earlier on a patch of grass adjacent to the bridge....

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Long Island news, weather, school and LIRR updates for Tuesday, April 8, 2014

The Bayville Bridge will be closed Wednesday, April

(Credit: Jim Fotedis/Bayville Souvlaki Pl)

Welcome to Newsday's Long Island Now live post for Tuesday, April 8, 2014.

Although we've wrapped up today's live coverage, below you can find a roundup of some of the local stories Newsday has been following throughout the day.

To view today's top tweets from Newsday and its reporters, scroll down. If you're a mobile user, use the link directly below.

BRIDGE CLOSING FOR TV SHOOT

The...

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Ben and Jerry’s giving away free ice cream today

Ben and Jerry's shops, including locations in Huntington

(Credit: benjerry.com)

What’s better than ice cream? Free ice cream!

Ben and Jerry’s stores across the country, including the two on Long Island, are giving away free scoops today to mark the 36th anniversary of the company’s first store opening in Burlington, Vt.

The Main Street Sweets and Ben and Jerry’s store at 121 Main St. in Westhampton Beach, and the Ben and Jerry’s store at 298 Main St. in Huntington...

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For Deer Park seniors, kickline title a perfect graduation gift

Deer Park High School's Falconettes kickline team won

(Credit: Deer Park High)

When Taylor Thomas, a senior captain of the Deer Park Falconettes, stepped into the arena at the ESPN Wide World of Sports Complex in Walt Disney World on March 1, she knew this would be her final kickline performance.

“I put everything I had into it,” said Thomas, 18, of her team’s pom routine, which was set to Fall Out Boy’s “The Phoenix.”

When the music stopped, Thomas said she burst...

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Levittown schools turn blue for autism awareness

From left, Vincent Causeman, dean of students at

(Credit: Tara Conry)

When the bell rang to change classes at MacArthur High School in Levittown Wednesday afternoon, waves of students sporting blue shirts poured into the hallways.

The sight made Vincent Causeman, a social studies teacher and MacArthur’s dean of students, grateful that students and staff wore the color of autism awareness. It also made him hopeful for his own children’s future.

Causeman’s...

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Historic 230-year-old Southold inn demolished

Originally known as the Cedar Beach Inn, and

(Credit: Randee Daddona)

A once “majestic” inn that stood on Cedar Beach Road in Southold for 230 years was demolished last Tuesday as the property’s new owners moved ahead with plans to turn the space into a community park.

An excavator ripped apart the historic General Wayne Inn, which had fallen into a state of disrepair since it closed in 1998, said Geoffrey K. Fleming, director of the Southold Historical Society.

“It’s...

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Rain pushes final St. Patrick's Day parade to April

The final St. Patrick's Day parade of 2014

(Credit: Erica Jackson)

St. Patrick is closing in on the Easter Bunny's turf.

Citing inclement weather, the Greater Patchogue Chamber of Commerce has pushed the community’s St. Patrick’s Day parade back to Sunday, April 6. That’s 20 days after St. Patrick's Day and 14 days before Easter.

The parade had been scheduled for Sunday, March 30.

The parade, which travels down Main Street, will start at 12:30...

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Viscardi visit inspires ‘Dancing With the Stars’ champ J.R. Martinez

"Dancing with the Stars" champ J.R. Martinez with

(Credit: Tara Conry)

Fifth-grader Michael Consenza doesn’t speak, but using a communication device called a DynaVox he was able to deliver a message to J.R. Martinez on Wednesday morning when the “Dancing With the Stars” champion visited the Henry Viscardi School in Albertson.

“I like you, J.R.,” Michael told the actor and Iraq war veteran through the automated voice generated by the machine after the 12-year-old...

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