Storm Protection Now
At the Rockaway Storm Protection event held on beach 129th street to commemorate the five year anniversary of Hurricane Sandy, hundreds of us gathered together to hear our religious leaders, our community activists and our politicians speak about resilience and the need for permanent storm protection. We felt many emotions as we remembered that day five years ago, the day when our beautiful Rockaway was devastated by flooding and fires like never before. We remembered that day and all the days after that day.
We held up signs, listened and we loudly proclaimed our urgent need for permanent storm protection. However, the most important thing we did on October 28, 2017 is that WE showed up in large numbers. That sent a clear message that our community will not be ignored. We need to keep up the pressure! The way to keep up the pressure is to become more informed and invested in this battle.
On November 28, the Rockaway Storm Protection Group is sponsoring a presentation at the Belle Harbor Property Owners Association meeting, 7 p.m. at MS/PS 114, 134-01 Cronston Avenue. The speaker is Adam Parris, the highly respected executive director of the Jamaica Bay Science and Resilience Institute, who will teach us about the future of Rockaway flood risk and what solutions can help us most.
By coming to this meeting you will be taking another step toward helping Rockaway fight for permanent storm protection. Please be there. All are welcome!
A Lovely Gift
I wanted to write a letter acknowledging the wonderful Rockaway treasure that is The Gift Is Love. This past weekend a friend and I visited with the hopes of finding something at the last minute. Immediately upon entering the store we were asked by Denise, the owner, what we were looking for. Once we explained she went above and beyond to find us the perfect product. The service, care, and commitment displayed by Denise and her employees is second to none. It was just another reminder why shopping small and supporting local business is so important. We left with exactly what we had in mind and smiles on our faces! Thanks!
Don’t Blame Ospreys
I was reading an article in last week’s edition of The Rockaway Times: "Positive Updates at November CB Meeting," and I noticed written in your article there was a claim made by a Rockaway resident that ospreys may be responsible for the dwindling piping plover population. So after reading this I wanted to see if this claim had any validity. I reached out to a much-respected member of our community, Don Riepe, who knows all about this type of wildlife, is well experienced with the qualifications to give us the correct answer and also a person very involved with our beautiful Jamaica Bay. My question to Don was, “is it true that ospreys may be responsible for the dwindling piping plover population?” His answer back to me was “NO ospreys are fish-eating raptors and in no way hurt the piping plover. The dwindling population is directly related to human activities as well as predation from crows, gulls, and several other species.”
Wreaths Across America
I wanted to share with you a wonderful experience Kelly and I had last December at Cypress Hills Cemetery. We participated in the "Wreaths Across America" ceremony at the military burial grounds of Cypress Hills in Brooklyn. Most of you are familiar with this tradition at Arlington Cemetery, but this also goes on at other military cemeteries all over the country.
I can't put into words the sight of the headstones adorned with beautiful wreaths. Then we noticed there were a significant number of unadorned stones due to a lack of funds. We looked at each other and knew exactly what we could do.
We are donating $250 to www.WreathsAcrossAmerica.org with a goal of getting $1,500 this year. This is the equivalent of 100 wreaths; each wreath costs $15. When you click on the "Donate" button, you will be given the opportunity to select the cemetery closest to you, and you can also sign up to volunteer.
Please consider joining us in this effort to increase the amount of wreaths at Cypress Hills and other cemeteries. It is wonderful way to share the joy of the Christmas season. Pass this email along to your friends and family and help spread the word.
Many thanks to all of you, and may God bless our troops.
Kelly & Gene Kelley
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