The Warriors Return To Rockaway July 12

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It is with great pleasure that we welcome back wounded service members of our great nation’s armed forces for the annual Rockaway Warriors Weekend.   

Hope for the Warriors is back and ready for a full weekend of programming that kicks off with a Hero’s Welcome Parade on Thursday, July 12.  The parade will enter Belle Harbor via Rockaway Beach Boulevard at approximately 6:30 p.m., turning up Beach 120th Street and making its way via Beach Channel Drive, down State Road past Roxbury. The parade is expected to arrive in Breezy Point at about 7 p.m., and will continue around the Breezy Point ball field and end at the Rockaway Point Yacht Club. We ask that all of our neighbors once again line the streets to cheer them on. Come out, wave your American flags, and show your support for these brave men and women and their families who have sacrificed so much defending our freedom.

After their warm welcome, these valiant soldiers will then partake in a well-deserved weekend of fun in the sun. On July 13 and 14 on the oceanside of Beach 219, our heroes will participate in surfing lessons provided by AmpSurf from 9 a.m. until noon, as well as kayaking and paddle boarding on the bayside. At the same time, they will also enjoy sailing and fishing provided by the Rockaway Point Yacht Club (RPYC). Amy Mahony from Peaceful Minds will be on the beach at the RPYC offering acupuncture and massage therapy for our veterans.

On Friday, July 13, the Lind family will host a dinner cruise aboard the Star of New York. The cruise sets sail for the Statue of Liberty, departing from Pier 9 in Sheepshead Bay at 6 p.m. sharp. The evening will include food by Ludwig’s Catering, music and dancing with a cash bar available for refreshments. Tickets are $50 per person and can be purchased by contacting Theresa Flanigan at (718) 306 – 2098.

On Sunday, July 15 at 10 a.m., there will be a memorial service at the Breezy Point September 11 Memorial, led by Blessed Trinity Parish. We invite you to bring your beach chairs and join for refreshments provided by the Breezy Point Cooperative following the service.

The Rockaway and Breezy Point communities have been welcoming our wounded service members for many years. “Every year it is such an honor to be part of this special weekend with this community. So many people coming together to put the Warriors first, giving back to total strangers who have given all of us our freedom is a beautiful thing,” the organizers said.

Rockaway Warriors Weekend t-shirts and cruise tickets will be available for purchase every weekend until the event at the shopping center in Breezy Point. They will also be sold on Wednesday nights on the ocean in Riis Park during volleyball beginning June 27.  All proceeds will go to the Rockaway Warriors Weekend.

The organizers says they are “fortunate to have the support of many locals, volunteering their time and talents to make this weekend run as smoothly as possible so that our heroes can focus on having fun while creating memories to last a lifetime right here on our sandy shores. Many thanks to the members of the Rockaway Point Yacht Club, The Graybeards, AmpSurf, The Portable Pig Man, Paul Signs, Call-A-Head, Ludwig’s Catering, Elizabeth Angebrandt and Joel Isaacson & Co., LLC, VFW Post 8540, The American Legion Breezy Point Post 1847, The Rockaway Point Association, The Sons and Daughters of Breezy Point, Blessed Trinity Parish, Atwell Tents, DJ Mouse, Breezy Grass, P. Murray Music, Svendsen Enterprises Inc, the Point Breeze, Rockaway Point and Roxbury Volunteer Fire Departments, the Breezy Point Cooperative, the 100th Precinct Community Affairs, the NYPD and FDNY, who go above and beyond to help create a safe, restorative, relaxing environment so our veterans can enjoy our tiny piece of Heaven on Earth.”

In addition to everyone listed above, this event would not be possible without the generous contribution made these past three years by the Gary Sinese Foundation. Their donation enables the warriors to enjoy the comforts of a reputable hotel for the duration of the weekend. It is with the help of the Fire Family Transport vehicles that the veterans are transported to and from the hotel while they are visiting.

Another major contributor has been William Lacey and the Civil Service Carpenters Union who host an annual golf outing with the proceeds going to Rockaway Warriors Weekend. This funding covers a major portion of our expenses and our event would not be as successful as it has been without their generocity.

Volunteers and donations are always welcome and needed. If you are interested in supporting and being a part of Rockaway Warriors Weekend, a tax deductible donation can be made out to FDNY Foundation and mailed to Richard Whalen at 27 Reid Avenue, Breezy Point, NY 11697 or Joe Gajewski at 123-07 Newport Avenue, Rockaway Beach, NY 11694.  To volunteer or for more information, please email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Volunteers are also needed for the adaptive surf programs. See Page 39 for details.

“We look forward to seeing the roads lined with patriotism as we welcome and celebrate our wounded veterans and their families,” the organizers said. “God bless our troops and God bless America.”

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