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Developmental Disabilities Institute rally set to support the disabled

The Developmental Disabilities Institute is hosting its "DDI Walk, Run and Ride for Autism" on Oct. 12 at the Wildlife & Ecology Center in the Town of Brookhaven.

The walk, run and motorcycle/classic car rally will promote community support for those with autism and other developmental disabilities.

"This event is all about coming together as a community and helping those who cannot help themselves," said Charley Hudson, co-chair of the event.

For the second year in a row, the grand marshals spent a week walking 128 miles from the Brooklyn Bridge to the Montauk Lighthouse to benefit the institute. Raising more than $40,000 from both walks were Nathan Holmes, John Kenny, Morgan Zajkowski, Ellen McBurney, Peter Barker, Marita Rausch and Liam Kenny.

Registration for the 5k Fun Run will begin at 8 a.m., with the run to start at 9 a.m.

The 5k Walk through Suffolk County's Holtsville Ecology Park will feature activities for the entire family, followed by a festival in the park complete with picnic lunch, music, games, a petting zoo and more.

Registration for the walk begins at 9 a.m., with the walk beginning at 11 a.m. The family activities continue until 2:30 p.m. The center is at 249 Buckley Road.

A rain date has been set for Oct. 19.

For details and to register, call 631-366-2914 or visit - SID CASSESE


New attraction for 'Spooktacular'

East Hills' annual Halloween "Spooktacular" is planned for Oct. 18 from 1-4 p.m. in the village park.

This year's theme will be Halloween "classics" and the nature trail will be used to feature a new attraction.

"We're probably in our fifth or sixth year and this is something the residents really look forward to," said Stacy Siegel, chairman of the Kids in the Park Committee. "This year we're using the nature trail and transforming it into a spooky walk for all ages -- this is one of our events where we try to cater to the family."

"We'll be doing more of the classics of Halloween instead of something like Disney," Siegel explained. "We'll have Dracula and Frankenstein and witches -- characters the parents will enjoy seeing as well."

A tractor hayride will transport visitors between the nature trail and the theater where a party will be held that will include a pumpkin carving and costume contests.

A magic show, bounce houses and crafts will also be featured.

Anyone who would like to volunteer to be one of the characters along the "Spooky Trail" or to act out parts in scenes is asked to contact Siegel at or to call the office of village attorney William Burton, at 917-376-8900. Volunteers are also needed to be tour guides.

The park is at 209 Harbor Hill Road. Rain date is Oct. 19. - LIZA IRIZARRY


Firing range contract up for vote tonight

The town board will again vote at its 7 p.m. meeting today for a contract with the U.S. Marshals Service to use a town-owned outdoor firing range, which did not pass at the last board meeting following public outrage over loud gunshot noise.

The contract -- worth $28,600 for the first year and $31,200 for an optional second year -- was shot down two weeks ago in a 2-2 vote by two board members who cited residents' complaints over the constant blasts in their normally peaceful neighborhood. At another board meeting last month, one resident submitted 100 signatures to the town demanding action for noise abatement.

The Islip Rifle, Pistol and Archery Range -- built around 1960 -- has been utilized by hundreds of shooters each year. Law enforcement groups such as the Marshals, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, as well as state and county court officers -- use the range during business hours on weekdays. The public has access to the 28-firing stations on weekends between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m.

Marshals already use the range on a per-session basis, but "formalizing the relationship between the Town of Islip and the U.S. Marshals Service is advantageous and desired by both parties, and would eliminate administrative burden on the Town," according to the proposed resolution.

On Freeman Avenue in Islip hamlet, the range has a row of homes to the west of the property and to the north, across Spur Drive South. Sound abatement measures installed last September have not culled the issue, neighbors said. The town has said a plan is in the works to come up with a solution. - SARAH ARMAGHAN


Hearing set Oct. 21 on town parking code

The town will hold a public hearing to consider updates to its parking code.

The hearing will be Oct. 21, and the town will consider removing provisions that there be a requirement for dedicated spaces regarding hybrid and alternative fuel vehicles. The hearing will also include a discussion on the use of commuter parking placards.

Earlier this year when town officials initiated sweeping parking changes in the downtown area and railroad station, it removed free metered parking allowances in those places -- and beaches -- for hybrid or alternative fuel vehicles that had been in place since 2007.

"When those incentives were enacted hybrids were not widely used and it was considered a means to encourage people to consider more environmentally friendly vehicles," town spokesman A.J. Carter said. "Since then hybrids are much more common and really there is no need to continue the incentive because people are using hybrids anyway."

The hearing will also consider allowing commuter parking permits to be transferred from one vehicle to the other with the consent of the town clerk.

The hearing will be at 6 p.m. at Town Hall, 100 Main St. - DEBORAH S. MORRIS


Retirement village hearing scheduled

The Brookhaven Town Board plans to hold a public hearing tomorrow on a proposed retirement community in Center Moriches.

The 146-unit development, to be known as the Vineyards at Brookfield, would be built at Wading River Road and Brookfield Avenue. Developers have asked town officials to rezone the site from industrial to a category that permits planned retirement communities.

The hearing will be one of nine public hearings scheduled, starting at 5 p.m. at Brookhaven Town Hall, 1 Independence Hill, Farmingville.

The board plans to hold a hearing on a proposed town code zoning amendment to encourage development of "planned development districts." Such districts are intended to protect environmentally sensitive lands by concentrating development in clusters away from lakes, streams and fragile ecosystems.

The meeting also will include seven public hearings on proposed zoning changes affecting hundreds of parcels in Yaphank related to the town's Carmans River Conservation and Management Plan. The plan, adopted last year, calls for implementing more restrictive zoning to discourage development in lands running alongside the 10-mile-long river. - CARL MACGOWAN


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