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Meeting on name change won't be open to public


Meeting on name change now closed

A meeting Friday between U.S. census officials and Rep. Kathleen Rice (D-Garden City) about changing the designation of East Garden City to Uniondale will not be open to the public.

A spokesman for Rice said the meeting at Rice's Garden City district office would not have been able to accommodate the number of people expected to attend. They planned to publicly discuss the meeting after it concluded.

Rice had announced the meeting last month in seeking to change the designation of East Garden City in census records. Rice and Hempstead Town officials have sent letters to the census bureau and elected officials seeking to change the name to Uniondale.

The census has designated the 3-square-mile region in northern Uniondale as East Garden City since at least 1990. Other records with that designation date to World War II. The region includes the Nassau Coliseum, Hofstra University, Roosevelt and Museum Row.

Residents have sought to change the name, recently launching a campaign in March. Opponents have argued the designation could lead to incorporation of a new city to take away tax dollars and implies racist discrimination to disenfranchise minorities and lower income families in Uniondale.

The Hempstead Town Board passed a resolution last month asking the census to change the name and recognizing the region as Uniondale.



Sex abuse prevention program tonight

A sexual abuse prevention program for parents is scheduled tonight at Commack High School.

The presentation will be lead by a representative from Parents for Meagan's Law and The Crime Victims Center, and is aimed at providing parents with information about laws on sexual assault, stalking and aggravated harassment, said Susan Eckert, an aide to Suffolk County Legis. Robert Trotta (R-Fort Salonga) who is co-hosting the event with the Commack Coalition of Caring and the Parent Resource Center.

Trotta said in a statement he wants to help educate parents about laws pertaining to sex offenders in their community. His office fielded calls from some parents concerned about a convicted sex offender who lives near Commack High School, said Eckert.

To register for the event, which will be held from 7 to 9 p.m. in the Student Learning Center, contact Debbie Virga at 631-858-3623.



Land use workshop set for Tuesday

A workshop to create a land use, circulation and infrastructure plan for the Melville Employment Center has been set for Tuesday.

It will be the first of several planned public workshops hosted by the Town of Huntington.

Interested residents, property owners and workers along the Route 110 corridor are encouraged to attend.

"Public input is an important part of the process in crafting a blueprint for the future of Long Island's downtown," Supervisor Frank P. Petrone said in a news release. "We want to know what people who live and work along the Route 110 Corridor would like to see to help make the area even more vibrant."

The board voted in September 2012 to establish a capital project account to fund preparation of a Melville employment center, an integrated land use plan, and a circulation and infrastructure plan as recommended by the town's Comprehensive Plan Update. It is expected to examine issues facing the Melville area and define an action agenda for future development and redevelopment, town officials said.

Among the specific topics to be covered by the Melville plan are: land use, including office/employment use, industrial use, residential use, mixed use and open space; circulation, including traffic congestion, pedestrian and bicycle connectivity, and enhanced transit service; community facilities and services, including sewage capacity for new developments and area-wide storm management, as well as the effect on property tax revenues from office/industrial development compared to the potential impacts on schools from new residential development; and design, including standards for new development.

Those interested in attending are asked to register by emailing melvilleplan@, or by calling 631-351-3199.



Exhibit features rare Toni Frissell photos

Rare photos by the late Toni Frissell, a top 20th century fashion photographer, photojournalist and former Village of the Head of the Harbor resident, will be displayed at Village Hall from Friday to June 11.

The exhibit includes 60 of Frissell's photographs, a 1928 silent film in which she stars, and vintage Vogue and Life magazines featuring her photos, exhibit curator Leighton Coleman said.

Frissel started her career at Vogue in the 1930s, first as a caption writer and then a fashion photographer, and went on to photograph Winston Churchill, the Tuskegee Airmen and former Head of the Harbor residents.

During World War II, Frissell worked as a Red Cross photographer and was the official photographer of the Women's Army Corps, highlighting soldiers, nurses and children.

"We want to celebrate the history of Head of the Harbor and the St. James area, and to remind people of the cultural history of this area, which is very rich and very diverse," said Coleman, the village historian.

Items from the Head of the Harbor home "Sherrewogue" that Frissell shared with her late husband, Francis McNeill Bacon III, also will be displayed. An opening reception is to be held Friday from 5 to 7 p.m. at Village Hall in St. James. For more information, go to


Public hearing on lifting parks' dog ban

A public hearing on a proposed pilot program to allow dogs on leashes in three North Hempstead parks is to be held Tuesday.

No dogs are allowed in any of the town's 52 parks. The test program would allow them at Michael J. Tully Park in New Hyde Park, Mary Jane Davies Park in Manhasset and North Hempstead Beach Park -- only on the boardwalk -- in Port Washington.

Town Supervisor Judi Bosworth said she did not know why the ban on dogs in town parks was started.

"It was under a previous administration. That's why we're trying to see about making the parks more dog-friendly," she said.

Town spokeswoman Carole Trottere said in an emailed statement that the program, if successful, could be expanded to other parks.



Free electronics 'Spring Cleaning'

Village officials are holding a free "Spring Cleaning Day" for residents' household electronic equipment on Saturday, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m., at Parking Field 26 at the corner of Hicks Street and West Valley Stream Boulevard.

"Valley Stream's robust electronic recycling program successfully removes toxins from our waste stream, in turn improving the overall health of our environment," Mayor Edwin Fare said in a news release.

The event allows residents to "get rid of unused electronic devices and accessories without having to pay any fees," he said.

Items to be recycled include but are not limited to computers and their components, printers, fax machines, televisions, VCRs, DVRs, DVD players, video game consoles, cellphones, CDs, DVDs and batteries.

For more information, call 516-825-8108 or check the village website at for updates.



Retiring teacher also a prom lifesaver

Bayport-Blue Point High School math teacher and student council adviser Carol Pitkewicz is retiring at the end of the year, capping a 23-year career with the district during which she has seen every type of prom fashion come and go.

"We went through a time when they [the boys] were wearing baby blues and white, all kinds of top hats and different kinds of shoes," Pitkewicz said at the school's prom on Friday.

Regardless of the fashion, repairs were always needed. So Pitkewicz takes a travel-sized sewing kit to the prom, ready to spring into action when a button is detached or a quick fix is needed.

"Sometimes the dresses are very fitted and the ladies are dancing and having a good time, and all of a sudden, a button will pop," Pitkewicz, 62, said.

She recalled a student splitting the entire length of her dress about 10 years ago.

"She had to go into the ladies room, take her dress off in the stall, and put the dress over the stall door," Pitkewicz said. "I sat there and sewed that seam from top to bottom with a little tiny sewing kit, threading and rethreading the needle.

"It took a long time, and she kept saying, 'Are you done yet?' She got it back on. She went back out there," Pitkewicz continued. "It didn't come apart for the rest of the night."

As her prom-going years come to an end, the teacher has a lesson for the students.

"Continue to work as hard as you work now," she said. "Always keep a smile on your face. Tell the people that you love them."

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