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Tony Danza serves up a packed house at Connolly's Station

Actor Tony Danza behind the bar at Connolly's

Actor Tony Danza behind the bar at Connolly's Tavern in Malverne. (March 14, 2013) Credit: Ian J. Stark

The evening scene at Connolly’s Station in Malverne was a packed one on Thursday, March 14 as actor and celebrity Tony Danza came by to both tend bar and help the community’s youth.

Danza worked the taps at Connolly’s (280 Hempstead Ave., Malverne, 516-887-5160, to help raise funds for the sixth grade classes of the Howard T. Herber Middle School, as its yearly field trip is in need of financial support. A 40-year tradition, the school’s outing to the Frost Valley YMCA sleepaway camp (located in the Catskill Mountain region of New York State) is intended to be an educational and self-building experience for attending students, but its funding was eliminated from the district budget.

As it turns out, while Danza is well-known as a sitcom star (“Taxi,” “Who’s The Boss”), film actor (“Hollywood Knights,” “She’s Out of Control,” "Don Jon"), Broadway performer (“The Producers,” “The Iceman Cometh”) and talk show host (“The Tony Danza Show”) – it’s not such common knowledge that the man is also a graduate of Malverne High School (Class of ’68), and was once a bartender at this same address (when the pub “Ickle Bickles” was in this space).

To his credit, Mr. Danza proved to still be a serviceable mixologist, as he actually made drinks to order, served beers and worked incredibly fast doing so. However, in spite of his diligence in getting customers their orders, Tony still found lots of time to shake hands, chat with customers and pose for photos, frequently flashing his famous smile along the way while dancing and cheering – all to the delight of the guests that completely filled Connolly’s both indoors and in a connected heated tent -- an occurrence that should prove to be a boon for the Herber Middle Schoolers as everyone in attendance made a donation (minimum of $20) at the door.

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