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Kidsday: The brain aneurysm swim

The brain aneurysm swim was a great experience for me. My nana, Joan Imhof, created and organized the swim at Oyster Bay Cove Beach. This annual swim is dedicated to brain aneurysm victims; the money raised goes to help fund brain aneurysm research.

There were many fun things for participants to enjoy before the swim started. They could purchase raffle tickets for prizes in shops and restaurants around Oyster Bay. At 10 a.m., the lifeguards and safety boats took positions along the one-mile course. After an inspirational speech from Joan, the swimmers entered the water.

During my swim with Nana, we talked, laughed and encouraged each other. Nana was proud of me and introduced me to many of her friends. What made this swim so special to Nana was that she is a brain aneurysm survivor. Last year, I met the doctor who had operated on her and saved her life. It was amazing to see how many people were at the swim and how many lives Nana touched.

Sadly, in November Nana was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer and after a three-week battle she died. My family and I were heartbroken, but in Nana's honor, we will continue to support brain aneurysm awareness and pancreatic cancer research.


Still wild about Harry

The magic of the "Harry Potter" series has cast its spell upon millions of people. Nearly a year ago, July 15, 2011, marked the release of the last movie, but this franchise will not be forgotten.

In 1990, J.K. Rowling, the author of the series, got the idea for a book series on a train ride to London; "Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone" was published seven years later.

In 2001, the film era began with the release of the first movie, starring Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint and Emma Watson as Harry, Ron and Hermione. Over 10 years, each movie created more and more fans. Even though the excitement of waiting in line to get the latest book or see the newest movie is no longer available, there are many ways to preserve the captivation of the series. In 2010, the Wizarding World of Harry Potter opened in Universal Orlando Resort. The park includes stores and three Potter themed rides.

In 2011, website pottermore .com was started. It is on this site that you can get sorted into a Hogwarts house, shop for magical supplies and more.

In March of this year, in London, a studio tour was created, and you can visit actual sets from the films and see special treasure and props. As you can see, the magic will always live in our hearts and we'll continue to wait for our Hogwarts acceptance letter.

--Kidsday Reporter Danielle Santevecchi

CLASS OF THE WEEK: Clara Villani's students, BROTHER JOSEPH C. FOX LATIN SCHOOL, KELLENBERG, Uniondale

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