On the eve of the 2010 Major League Baseball postseason, as teams from both the American and National Leagues begin their quest to become champions, Floral Park celebrated its own baseball champs. At the Floral Park Board of Trustees meeting held on Tuesday, Oct. 5, Mayor Kevin J. Greene awarded citations to members of the Floral Park Little League Boys Junior All Star team, who won the New York State Little League Junior Division Championship on Aug. 2.
“Each and every one of you should be proud of your accomplishments,” Mayor Greene said to the boys, who range in age from 13 to 14. “You have lived the dream of many Little Leaguers across the country. You join a select few who have bragging rights, and you deserve it.”
Led by manager Chris Coyne and coaches Charlie Beiter and Greg Stelzer, the team comprised 13 players: Brian Barry, Rob Beiter, Joe Brandt, Alex Cerrone, Kevin Coyne, Dylan Early, Kevin Jakinovich, Timmy Lazaroff, Brandon Mandile, James McCleary, Mike Nelson, Rocco Sollecito and Kyle Stelzer.
Mayor Greene cited the commitment of the families, who endured many interrupted dinners and altered vacation plans, and the dedication of the manager and coaches, who were able to “motivate without intimidation” and who acted as role models to whom the boys looked up.
Aside from awarding each of the players with a citation, the mayor thanked the team for renewing the spirit within Floral Park. Our summer “started off on the wrong foot.” Alluding to tragedies that took the lives of young residents—early last summer and during the summer of 2009, he said, “We haven’t had a good couple of years as far as the Village of Floral Park goes. … You guys did a lot more for the Village of Floral Park than just bringing a trophy back to town. I want to recognize you and thank you for … lifting the spirits of residents. I appreciate it.”
Indeed, that renewed spirit is permeating the town. Trustee Mary-Grace Tomecki reported at the meeting on Oct. 5 that Liz’s Day, held at the Floral Park Recreation Center on Saturday, Oct. 2, was a huge success. The annual charity event for breast cancer awareness, which the Recreation Center has hosted for more than a decade, is the culmination of months of planning. Spearheaded by Meg Allen, Ginny Coughlin and Nancy Daly, a small group of volunteers work tirelessly with the recreation staff to honor the memory of Liz McFarland, a Floral Park resident who succumbed to breast cancer. McFarland and Coughlin were sisters.
Trustee Tomecki cited statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In 2006, 40,820 women died from breast cancer and 191,410 women were diagnosed with breast cancer. “Despite the weight of these statistics, the spirit and dedication of these volunteers is not to be quelled,” Tomecki commended.
As this story went to press, Floral Park officials were putting the finishing touches on another village event. The Floral Park and Covert Avenue Chambers of Commerce joined forces to host Floral Park Community Day, to be held at Belmont Park on Sunday, Oct. 10.