Jaclyn Gallucci

Jaclyn Gallucci is a writer and managing editor at the Long Island Press. She is a Livingston award finalist who has written extensively about the environment and unsolved murders on Long Island.

The Rundown – June 2013

Anyone can see the movie or read the book, but draping themselves in the words of F. Scott Fitzgerald takes fandom to a whole new level. Every inch of this T-shirt from Litographs is covered in text from this classic Long Island novel. Designed by artist Danny Fein, 75,000 words were manually screen-printed onto the garment. While every page could not be squeezed onto the shirt, there’s enough there to keep yourself entertained for at least a few hours.

1. Go to www.geoguessr.com. 2. Get virtually tossed onto the streets of a random area around the world via Google Maps street view. 3. Click your mouse to walk around, zoom in on signs, look at the area and figure out where in the world you are. Sound hard? It is.

The caption says it all: “It’s OK dog, that scene gets everyone.” Watch this adorable puppy get choked up while watching a sad scene from The Lion King in this viral video. Then watch it again.

Starbucks. Dunkin’. 7-Eleven. Those are the go-to coffee places for most of Long Island. But tucked away just off Route 110 on New Highway in Farmingdale is a coffee wonderland stocked with fresh-made brews from around the world. Sacks of beans line the walls and all sorts of insane coffee-brewing gadgets that look like they sprung out of Willy Wonka’s factory stand behind the counter ready to make you the best cup of Joe you’ve ever had in your life. It’s beautiful. And addictive.

“If only my tuxedo cat had a bow tie…” you often wonder. Problem solved. Add some new options to your kitty’s wardrobe with OskarAndKlaus.com’s new black removable bow tie that can be put on or taken off depending on what look your cat is going for that day.

ataribreakout6. GOOGLE “ATARI BREAKOUT
Google’s latest “Easter Egg” game celebrates the 37th birthday of the classic 1970s brick game, Breakout, right in your browser. Just do a Google Image search for “Atari Breakout” and the tiled image results form layers of bricks and a bouncing ball appears on the bottom of your screen that can be controlled with your mouse or arrow keys.

redyellowblue7. VISIT RED, YELLOW & BLUE
Orly Genger’s installation transforms Madison Square Park with 1.4 million feet of layered, painted, and hand-knotted rope that turns the New York City park’s lush lawns into colorfully-lined chambers. It’s on display through Sept. 8.

What’s old is new again! Children of the ’80s you can now race against the clock in a two-minute sprint to clear lines and rack up points right on your smart phone or play on Facebook. Prepare to be addicted.

On Sunday, June 9, Friendly’s will host a Burger Bash at its Massapequa Park restaurant where the top three contestants of its “Build Your Own Burger” Contest will make their original burger creations for a panel of local celebrity judges.

In this real-world version of Bejeweled, swap and match gems and earn coins by matching three or more. The set includes 84 regular gems, seven power gems, 70 scoring coins, a bag and game base.

2013 Long Island Memorial Day Parades Times & Locations

memorialDAY_PARADESMemorial Day is the time to honor our vets the best way we know how. So, don your poppies,  slap on that red, white and blue and hit up one of the many Long Island Memorial Day parades on Monday, May 27 (unless otherwise noted).

Amityville: 10 a.m. Broadway Triangle Gazebo
Babylon Village: 11 a.m. Foster Blvd & Deer Park Ave to Main Street to Memorial at Argyle Park Gazebo
Baldwin: 9:30 a.m. Linden Street to Silver Lake Park
Bay Shore: 10 a.m. Lanier Lane & Main Street to Oakwood Cemetery
Bayville: 1:30 p.m. Bayville Village Hall, down School Street to Soundside Beach
Bethpage: 10 a.m. Broadway and Central Avenue to Community Park
Blue Point: 11 a.m. Blue Point Avenue and Middle Road to Firehouse
Bohemia: 10 a.m. Hubal Street and Ocean Avenue to Pearl Street
Brentwood: 9:30 a.m. Madison Avenue & Jackson Street
Brookhaven: 9 a.m. Bellport High School to Beaver Dam Road to South Country Rd.
Center Moriches: 9 a.m. Lake Avenue and Main Street
Centerport: 10:30 a.m. Harrison Drive to Park Circle
Centereach (SUNDAY 5.26): 1 p.m. Middle Country Rd & Henry Rd to VFW on Horseblock Rd
Central Islip: 10 a.m. Moloney Funeral Home, Irving Street and Carleton Ave to Alfano School on Wheeler Rd.
Commack: 10 a.m. Jericho Tpke and Larkfield Rd to Cannon Park at Jericho and Veterans Memorial Highway
Copiague: 10 a.m. Dixon Ave and Great Neck Rd, stops at two war memorials, ends at Great neck Road Elementary School
Deer Park:
10 a.m. Lake Ave to memorial stone at Deer Park Ave School
East Islip
: 10 a.m. Main Street & Greenwood, West on Main to Islip Town Hall
East Meadow:  10 a.m. starting at East Meadow High School to Hempstead Turnpike to Veterans Memorial Park
East Northport: 12:15 p.m. Clay Pitts and Larkfield roads to John Walsh Memorial Park
East Norwich: 9 a.m. Walnut Avenue and Route 106 to fire department
East Rockaway: 10 a.m. VFW Post 3350 at Main Street to Village Hall
East Setauket: 10 a.m. Memorial Park to Main Street to Route 25A
Elmont: 10 a.m. Sewanhaka High School to Covert Ave to Hempstead Tpke to Elmont Memorial Library
Farmingdale (SUNDAY 5.26): 1:30 p.m. Long Island National Cemetery
Floral Park: 10 a.m. Elizabeth Street to Memorial Park
Franklin Square: 10 a.m. Starts at VFW at 68 Lincoln Rd to Hempstead Turnpike
10 a.m. South Brookside Avenue to West Merrick Rd. to South Ocean Ave to library
Garden City: 10 a.m. Cherry Valley Avenue at 10th Street
Garden City Park: 9 a.m. Denton Avenue & Jericho Tpke, down Jericho to Nassau Blvd
Glenwood Landing: 9 a.m. Fire Station 1, Grove Street to Fire Station 2 at Glen Head Road
Great Neck: 9:30 a.m. Susquehanna Avenue and Middleneck Road to village green
Greenlawn: 9 a.m. East Maple Road to Memorial Park at Pulaski Road
Greenport: 10 a.m. Veterans Memorial Park on Main Street to Front Street, ends at 3rd Street fire house
Hempstead (SUNDAY 5.26): 2:30 p.m. Greenwich Street and Marvin Avenue to cemetery on Greenwich Street
Hicksville: 9 a.m. Sears parking lot to Hicksville Middle School
Holbrook: 10:30 a.m. Main Street from Holbrook Plaza to Furrows Road to Grundy Ave to Alex Diguardia Memorial
Huntington Village: 11:30 a.m. Big H Shopping Center to Main Street
Inwood (SUNDAY 5.26): 11:30 a.m. Inwood LIRR  to John J. Oliverie VFW Post at Mott Avenue
10 a.m. Main Street and Saxon Ave to Town Hall
Kings Park: 9 a.m. Starts at RJO, west on Old Dock Road to Main Street, Kings Park Library
Lake Ronkonkoma: 10 a.m. American Legion on Church Street to Hawkins Avenue to Portion Rd to Raynor Beach County Park
Lawrence: 10:45 a.m. Begins at Lawrence-Cedarhurst firehouse on Central & Washington Avenues to Andrew J. Parise Park
Levittown: 10 a.m. Island Trees Memorial Middle School on Wantagh Avenue to Hempstead Turnpike
Locust Valley: 9 a.m. Forest Avenue to athletic field on Bayville Rd
Long Beach: 9:30 a.m. Ohio Avenue & Beach Street, ends at Kennedy Plaza
Massapequa Park: 10 a.m. Front Street to Park Boulevard to Clark Boulevard to Klestinec Park for a Service
Mastic Beach: 11 a.m. Montauk Highway and Mastic Road
Medford: 11 a.m. Tremont Avenue to Route 112 to Medford Memorial Park
Melville: 10 a.m. Fletcher Place and Route 110 to fire house
Merrick: 9:30 a.m. Veterans Plaza between Merrick and Brooklyn Avenues to Veterans Monument at Lee Avenue
Mineola: 11 a.m. Wilson Park to Westbury Ave to Roslyn Rd to Jericho Tpke to Veterans Memorial at Park
Montauk (SUNDAY 5.26): Noon. 26 Oceanside Beach Resort on Montauk Hwy to Edison past post office and back to Village Green
New Hyde Park (SATURDAY 5.25): 10 a.m. Hillside Blvd to Jericho Tpke to New Hyde Park Rd to Lincoln Ave to Memorial Park
Northport: 9:30 a.m. north end of Laurel Avenue to harbor to Village Park
Oyster Bay: 10:30 a.m. South Street to Main Street to Audrey Avenue, ends at bandstand opposite post office
Plainview: 9:30 a.m. Old Country Rd to Plainview Community Park on Washington Avenue
Port Washington: 10 a.m. Main Street to bandshell
Rockville Centre: 10 a.m. Begins at Southside High School, to Long Beach Road to Rec Center
St. James: 10 a.m. Woodlawn and Lake Avenues to St. James Elementary School
Sayville: 9 a.m. Handsome Avenue and Main Street, down Main to Lincoln Avenue
Seaford: 10 a.m. Verity Plaza behind the Seaford Cinema to Washington Ave, to Four Chaplains Monument
Shelter Island: 10 a.m. Begins at the Island Center
Smithtown: Noon. Singer Lane, west on Main Street to Town Hall
Southampton: 10:45 a.m. First Presbyterian Church  down Jobs Lane to Agawam Park with service w/ guest speaker Chuck Scarborough
Stony Brook: 10 a.m. Stony Brook Shopping Center to Main Street to Veterans Memorial Park
Syosset: 10 a.m. Dawes Ave. to Jackson Ave. to Memorial Park
Valley Stream: 9:30 a.m. Rockaway Parkway and Wheeler Avenue to Hicks and Valley Stream Blvds.
Wantagh: 10 a.m. Beltagh and Wantagh Avenues to American Legion Post on Park Ave
West Hempstead: 10 a.m. Nassau Boulevard and Hempstead Avenue, ends at Echo Park
West Islip: 10 a.m. 6 Udall Road & Roderick Street to Memorial Park on Udall & Higbie Lane
Williston Park: 9 a.m. American Legion Post 144 through village
Yaphank (SUNDAY 5.26): Noon. Yaphank Aveneu along Main Street to Everett Drive

Bears & Motorcycles Play Montauk Music Festival – May 16-19

bears and motorcyclesLong Island-based band and this year’s Break Contest winners Bears & Motorcycles head to the East End this weekend for The Montauk Music Festival, a four day musical celebration featuring talented up-and-coming independent artists.

Forged in the summer of 2012, Long Island’s Bears & Motorcycles began with three members: Dillon Mealey, Jeff Alvarado, and Brendan McGrath. The trio started writing raw, unpolished blues-rock in the backyard of a long island suburb in the heat of that summer. What soon would develop into heart wrenching anthems and fiery hooks had begun to take shape.

Within a few months two new members were added to complete the lineup. Professionally trained jazz/blues keys player Will Mahlan and the promising young drummer Jonathan Brick. With sounds drawing from the influences of the acid-washed, blues driven rock of the ’60s and ’70s and the catchy fervor of newer band from the 2000s and beyond this sound is something you can’t quite put your finger on.

Bears and Motorcycles won The Break Contest two weeks ago at the Encore Event Center in New Jersey and GameChanger is featuring the band’s music in a video game that will be released in early 2014.

More than 100 artists boasting a wide variety of musical styles (from alternative, rock, folk, pop, Americana, reggae, blues, jazz, bluegrass, to flamenco, rap, hip-hop, country, metal, and more), will be performing for free in the spirit of sharing original music with audiences and fellow musicians at this weekend’s event.

In its third year of production, the festival has cultivated an atmosphere of goodwill promoting local charities, connecting local New York “island” musicians with those from as far away as Vermont and California.  Music lovers and performers alike are drawn to the beautiful oceanside playground of Montauk to promote and share art.

Click here for full schedule and details on The Montauk Music Festival.

EMCON3 Anime Festival – May 18 & 19

anime1Anime fans unite at East Meadow Public Library this weekend for a 2-day festival filled with screenings, Tai Chi weapon demonstrations, a virtual tour of Japan, music and more!

Saturday, May 18th Schedule:
10 a.m. – Anime Drawing Workshop with Jen Scrimenti and Kelly Gordon of “Night and Day Anime”
12 p.m. – Tai chi Weapon Demonstrations
1:30 p.m. – Power point presentation of “Tour of Japan” with Joe Liotta
3 p.m. – Animation workshop with Zanny Lane of “Graphic Anime”
Programs Running All Day:
Anime Screenings with Anime Historian Michael Epstein
Anime Café w/ EMPL Friends
Artists Alley
Video Game Tourney
Battle Tech w/ Dan Gerken

Sunday, May 19th Schedule:
1 p.m. – Anime Comedian Ian Rubin
2 p.m. – Anime Concert “Hitomi Himekawa and The Rainbow Bubble Dancers”
4 p.m. – Cosplay Contest, 3 Prizes given for “Best Costume” “Best Skit” and “Originality”
Programs Running All Day:
Anime Screenings with Anime Historian Michael Epstein
Anime Café w/ EMPL Friends
Artists Alley
Video Game Tourney


2013 Long Island Street Fairs & Festivals


This weekend kicks off the first of a full lineup of outdoor street fairs and festivals on Long Island. But the season has just begun, so consider this a little taste of things to come.

Cherry Blossom Festival @ Charles B. Wang Center, Stony Brook University, Stony Brook. May 4

Manhasset School Community Association Fair
@ Munsey Park Elementary School, Manhasset. May 4

Boater’s Maritime Festival @ Harborfront Park, Port Jefferson. May 4 & 5

Dutch Festival @ Hofstra University, Hempstead. May 5

Street Fair @ Broadway & Washington Avenue, Bethpage. May 5

Southampton Elks Carnival @ 605 Country Road 39, Southampton. May 10-19

Spring Festival @ Sunrise Highway & Grand Avenue, Baldwin. May 11 & 12

Street Fair @ Levittown Library. May 18 & 19

Fleece & Fiber Fair @ Hallockville Museum Farm, Riverhead. May 18 & 19

Community Festival & Street Fair @ Old Deer Park Avenue, North Babylon. May 19

Carnival @ Huntington YMCA. May 23-27

Foundation Carnival @ John F. Kennedy Middle School, Port Jeff Station. May 24-27

Brookhaven Fair @ Bald Hill, Farmingville. May 24-June 9

Bellmore Spring Festival @ Bellmore LIRR. May 25-27

Grecian Festival @ St. Nicholas Shrine Greek Orthodox Church, West Babylon. May 26-June 2

Summer Seafood Festival @ Sunken Meadow Boardwalk, Kings Park. Every Wednesday evening beginning May 29

Greek Festival @ Greek Orthodox Cathedral, Hempstead. May 30-June 2

Long Island Farmers’ Markets Summer 2013

veggiesAs the summer months head our way, farmers’ markets across Long Island are getting ready to re-open for the 2013 season. This list will be updated as new confirmations roll in.

Amityville Village: 9/11 Memorial Park, Route 110. Saturdays, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Opens July 6.
Baldwin: American Legion Hall, 2754 Grand Ave. Saturdays, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Through Oct. 26
Deer Park: Tanger Outlets at the Arches. Saturdays, 10 a.m.-3 p.m. June 1-Nov. 23
East Hampton: Nick & Toni’s lot, 136 N. Main St. Fridays, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. May 24–Sept. 27
Elmont: Belmont Park, 2150 Hempstead Tpke. Saturdays, 11 a.m.-5 p.m. Opens May 11.

Farmingdale: Behind A Taste of LI, Saturdays & Sundays, 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
Freeport: 130 E. Merrick Rd. Saturdays, 11 a.m.-4 p.m.
Garden City: 101 County Seat Dr., Supreme Court Building Lot. Tuesdays, 7 a.m.-1 p.m. June 4-Nov. 26
Glen Cove: 18 Village Square. Fridays, 9 a.m.-Noon. June 14–Nov. 22
Great Neck: Village Green between Beach Road and Arendale Avenue on Middle Neck Road. Sundays, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
Greenport: 1st St Lot of United Methodist Church. Saturdays, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. May 25-Oct. 12
Hauppauge: TFCU Parking Log, 102 Motor Pkwy. Thursdays, 8 a.m.-1 p.m. June 6-Aug. 29.
Hewlett: Grant Park, Fridays, 8 a.m.-1 p.m. Through Nov. 15
Huntington: Route 25A, East of Route 110. Sundays, 7 a.m.-Noon. June 2-Nov. 24
Huntington: Jack Abrams School, 155 Lowndes Ave. Sundays, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Through Oct. 27.
Islip: Town Hall Lot, Montauk Highway. Saturdays, 7 a.m.-Noon. June 1- Nov. 23.
Kings Park: Main Street, across from Fire Department. Sundays, 9 a.m.-2 p.m. June-November.
Locust Valley: 115 Forest Ave. Saturdays, 8 a.m.-1 p.m. Jue 1-Nov. 16.
Long Beach: Kennedy Plaza, Park Avenue. Wednesdays, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturdays, 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Through Nov. 16.
Long Beach: Parking lot of the Alamitos Bay Marina on East Marina Dr. Sundays, 9 a.m. Through Oct. 31.
Malverne: Crossroads Farm at Grossmann’s, 480 Hempstead Ave. Tuesday to Friday, 11 a.m.-6 p.m.; Saturday, 9 a.m.-6 p.m.; Sunday, 10 a.m.-5 p.m. Through November
Montauk: Village Green, Thursdays, 9 a.m.-2 p.m.
New Hyde Park: 1441 Jericho Tpke. Saturdays, 8 a.m.-1 p.m. Opens in June.
Northport: St. Paul’s, 27 Main St. Saturdays, 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Through Aug. 31

Oyster Bay: 54 Audrey Ave. Saturdays, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. Through Nov. 16.
Patchogue: 7-11 Lot, 225 E. Main St. Fridays, 8 a.m.-1 p.m. July 5 –Nov. 15
Port Jefferson: Corner of Route 25A & Route 112, Steam Room Parking Lot. Thursdays, 10 a.m.-4:30 p.m. July 4-Oct. 17.
Port Washington: Town Dock, Saturdays, 8 a.m.-Noon. June-October.
Riverhead: Town lot next to Aquarium at Peconic River. Thursdays, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. July 11-Oct. 24.
Rockville Centre: Sunrise Highway & Long Beach Road. Sundays, 7 a.m.-Noon. June 2-Nov. 24.
Roslyn-North Hills: Christopher Morley Park, Searingtown Road. Wednesdays, 7 a.m.-1 p.m. June 5-Nov. 27.
Sag Harbor: Breakwater Yacht Club lot, Bay & Burke streets. Saturdays, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. May 18-Oct. 26.
Sayville: Broadway & Main Street. Saturdays, 8:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. Opens May 18
Seaford: Railroad Street, LIRR Lot @ Washington Avenue. Saturdays, 7 a.m.-noon. June 1-Nov. 23.
Southampton: 25 Jobs Lane. Sundays, 9 a.m.-2 p.m. May 26-Oct. 13.
Valley Stream: Franklin Hospital, 900 Franklin Ave. Thursdays, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Through Oct. 31.
Westbury: 212 Garden Street, Saturdays, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. July 13th – November 23
Westhampton Beach: 85 Mill Rd., next to Historical Society. Saturdays, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. May 11-Nov. 16





Book Review: A Dual Inheritance – By Joanna Hershon

A Dual Inheritance - A novel by Joanna Hershon
A Dual Inheritance - A novel by Joanna Herson
A Dual Inheritance – A novel by Joanna Hershon

Brooklyn author Joanna Hershon’s father attended Harvard in the late 1950s. She was in middle school when she saw what’s known as Harvard’s Red Book, in which graduates write about what they’d done since graduation. “As a seventh grader, I read it cover to cover; and what always stayed with me was how wildly different all their lives had turned out,” she says. “The Red Book, in all its mystery, inserted itself into my imagination and I suppose it never left.”

Inspired by these real-life stories spanning decades, Hershon creates an intriguing tale in A Dual Inheritance, which follows two very different Harvard students from their undergrad years to the present. Ed and Hugh have nothing in common. One is upper class, the other working class, and their unlikely lifelong bond launches this saga of passion and betrayal. One becomes a big shot on Wall Street, the other a global humanitarian, but their friendship ends abruptly, with only one of them understanding why.

Spanning from the Cuban Missile Crisis to the present-day stock market collapse, this novel not only follows these two men, but the complicated women in their vastly different lives. The reader gets to see how the characters’ choices mold their futures while joining them on a global journey that takes them from New York to Haiti.

This thought-provoking generational tale is a heartfelt and beautiful story of an unlikely friendship that fades at times, but never seems to go away.

Joanna Hershon will appear at Book Revue in Huntington on May 9 at 7 p.m. for a book signing.

The Rundown – May 2013

Chris Hadfield

1. Follow the coolest guy in the universe: Commander Chris Hadfield (@Cmdr_Hadfield on Twitter) arrived at the International Space Station in December for a 5-month tour of duty and ever since he’s talked Star Wars with William Shatner, dropped the puck for the Maple Leafs, performed with the Barenaked Ladies and chatted up the Queen of England—all from space, where the Canadian astronaut gets to see sunrise and sunset 16 times per day. No big deal. It’s just another day. He also dressed up for St. Patrick’s Day, showed how hard it is to do things like add salt and pepper to food, while sharing fantastic photos he takes daily from space. Follow this guy. He’s awesome, which means when you retweet him, you’ll be awesome, too.


2. Ride The Run: The latest addition to Splish Splash will debut Memorial Day weekend, and it’s the first-ever water ride in New York State featuring new generation hydromagnetic technology. Bootlegger’s Run will take a four-person raft through a series of drops, including one from nearly five stories high, while powerful electromagnetic fields propel the steel-bottomed rafts uphill, just like a roller coaster. “Imagine a cross between a whitewater raft ride and a roller coaster,” says Mike Bengtson, Splish Splash general manager. “Bootlegger’s Run is like a roller coaster that races on water instead of rails.” Sign us up!

Rundown_VINE3. Download Vine: Now, instead of telling your Facebook friends and Twitter followers what you ate for breakfast and sharing pictures of your bagel on Instagram, you can video yourself taking your first bite for the world to see. Vine lets you take 6-second looping videos using your phone that are easily shared through social media. So, whether you’re polishing off a bagel or filming a family of geese crossing the street, this will probably be your new addiction.

NOTHING PERSONAL4. Meet Steve Schirripa: You probably know Schirripa as Bobby “Bacala” from HBO’s The Sopranos, but these days the Brooklyn-born actor, comedian and Goomba series author has bridged the gap from TV crime to real-world crime. Schirripa hosted two seasons of the Investigation Discovery series, Nothing Personal, and is now hosting Karma’s a B*tch! on the same network. Schirripa will sign copies of his latest book, Big Daddy’s Rules, on May 22 at Roslyn’s Bryant Library, on May 23 at the Book Revue in Huntington and on May 29 at Port Washington Public Library.

Rundown_CraftBeer5. Drink Long Island Craft Beer: Uniting local breweries, restaurants, retailers and bars with beer enthusiasts, the 2013 annual Long Island Craft Beer Week will be a 10-day Island-wide celebration of beer, the making of beer, and the enjoyment of beer.  From May 10-19, local retailers and restaurants team up with their favorite breweries to host special events—pairings, tap takeovers, special menus, meet the brewer nights, and more—showing the local beer enthusiasts why they love craft beer. Visit www.longislandcraftbeerweek.com for a full rundown of events.

Rundown_ MurderonLI6. Read Murder on Long Island: A 19th Century Tale of Tragedy & Revenge: In 1854, James Wickham was a wealthy Cutchogue farmer with a large estate. He and his wife were later murdered by an ex-employee with an axe. The man was captured, and on Dec. 15, 1854, he became one of the last people to be hanged in Suffolk County. Written by the Southold Historical Society, this book documenting the murders can be purchased through the Southold Historical Society or Amazon.com.

7. Youtube How Animals Eat Their Food: So, two guys sit down at a table and start to eat their salads, when one asks, “Want to see how animals eat their food?” You can probably guess what happens next, so we won’t spoil the rest for you, but the flamingo and rhinoceros win, hands down.

Rundown_Glasses8. Get Pixelated 8-Bit Glasses: For the old-school gamers out there who want to rock the kind of shades Super Mario would have in his hay day, hold on to your Atari stick. These sunglasses (Amazon, $9.99) laugh in the face of rounded edges and look pretty surreal in the 3-D world.

9. Check Out The Hot Baby Names for 2013: There are a ton of Johns and Marys already so maybe you’re looking for something a little different for your kids. What about Severine or Phaedra? Thor? Mingus? Are you cringing yet? Well, check out the rest of the list on Nameberry.com.

Rundown_MemorialDay10. Celebrate Memorial Day! Pin on your poppies, slap on that red, white and blue, and fire up the grill!


Shannan Gilbert’s Disappearance: Three Years Later

Shannan Gilbert

Shannan Gilbert was running frantically down Anchor Way in Oak Beach the last time she was seen alive exactly three years ago today.

In the darkness, Suffolk County detectives believe that in the early hours of May 1, 2010, the 24-year-old ran into the towering reeds bordering the road, not realizing she was entering flooded marsh that, at times, can be filled waist-deep with water and quicksand-like mud.

Investigators said her death was likely an accidental drowning, although the medical examiner could not determine an actual cause of death from Shannan’s hair and bones, the only pieces that remained of her body when it was found one year later.

But there are certain facts that, at least publicly, have yet to be reconciled by police.

Shannan’s pocketbook, jeans, shoes and lip gloss were found in the marsh near Anchor Way, near the area residents of Oak Beach reported last seeing her. If Shannan’s remains were found with these items, the accidental drowning theory would make sense. But they weren’t.

Shannan’s body was found on the other side of the marsh, which means she would have had to travel a quarter of a mile by foot, wading through areas of waist-high water, through the quicksand-like areas and towering reeds of the marsh. She would also have had to unbuckle her sandals and maneuver out of her tight-fitting jeans near the beginning of this journey.

If this did happen, and Shannan traveled a quarter of a mile through the marsh half naked, why did she accidentally drown only 100 feet away from the safety of Ocean Parkway in shallow water?

It’s a question police have yet to address. Since Shannan’s remains were found, investigators have remained mum about new developments on Shannan’s case and the other victims—eight women, a man and a female toddler, only half of whom have been identified—found along Ocean Parkway.

“We are not commenting further at this time on the Gilgo investigation until/unless we have some additional information pertaining to the investigation that serves the investigation or the public by its release,” Suffolk County police have repeatedly told the Press in statements over the past year.

Investigators have said they don’t believe Shannan’s death is related to the victims of a suspected serial killer, whose remains were found several miles away. But it is because of Shannan that those victims were found at all.

Police were searching for Shannan when they discovered other bodies in the brush, including those of Megan Waterman, Melissa Barthelemy, Maureen Brainard-Barnes and Amber Lynn Costello.

Last November, Shannan’s mother Mari and her attorney, John Ray, filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Oak Beach resident Dr. Charles Peter Hackett for Shannan’s disappearance and death.

“We allege that Dr. Peter Hackett has told others that he encountered Shannan knocking on his door on May 1, that he let her into his home and that he administered narcotics,” said Ray outside of the Suffolk County Supreme Court Complex in Riverhead. “He used the phrase that it was ‘too late’ to help her and that he then released her.”

The suit’s allegations—that Hackett gave Shannan drugs and then let her go, thereby causing her death, and that he misrepresented the facts to both the public and the police—are based on Ray’s own investigation of Shannan’s disappearance and of Hackett, as well as conversations he says he’s had with the doctor’s neighbors in the Oak Beach community.

“There’s no direct evidence as to who killed this lady,” he continued. “But circumstantial evidence can be very strong. And the circumstantial evidence right now is very strong to support what we’re doing here with this lawsuit.”

That circumstantial evidence all stems from a phone call Mari says she received from Hackett during the mid-afternoon hours of May 1, 2010.

“[Hackett] did say that he had Shannan, that we was taking care of Shannan, and he was running a halfway house for girls,” Mari said, adding that Hackett seemed  “very distant” and worried about himself more than about the well-being of her daughter when asking whether Shannan had come home.

Hackett, who now resides in Florida, could not be reached for comment. Police have stated in the past that Hackett is not considered a suspect.

Officially, Shannan’s death has been ruled “undetermined.” Her remains are still in the custody of the Suffolk County Medical Examiner’s Office and her family is hoping to save enough money to pay for a private exam by another medical examiner.

In December, Megan Waterman’s mother, Lorraine Ela and Amber Lynn Costello’s sister, Kimberly Overstreet marked the anniversary of the discovery of the bodies of their loved ones near Gilgo Beach.

Lorraine told the Press says she  had little communication from authorities and is looking to hire a private investigator.

“Honestly, the Suffolk County Police Department have not talked to me,” said Ela, adding that she’d like the FBI to take over the Gilgo case. “It’s a cold case. They’re not out there looking for anybody. It’s sitting on their back burner because of the lifestyle that the girls were living.”

Kimberly wondered why there wasn’t a bigger deal made about the other women’s disappearances before her sister and the other women, who were working as prostitutes, went missing.

“It’s just a shame, I never even heard of Shannan Gilbert or any of them,” she said. “Me or my sister, we never heard anything. We didn’t even know girls were missing.”

As far as the lawsuit goes, Mari said she didn’t care if she got $1 or $1 million, she just wanted justice for her daughter.

And with no new information released by police, the wait for that justice, and for any answers, continues.

Those with information on Shannan’s disappearance or any information on the victims found on Ocean Parkway can call Homicide Squad detectives at 631-852-6396, Crime Stoppers anonymously at 1-800-220-8477, text tips anonymously by texting “SCPD” to “CRIMES” (274637) or email information via www.tipsubmit.com

There is a $25,000 reward for information leading to an arrest in the case, the highest sum ever offered in Suffolk County history for an unsolved homicide.







Row Row Row Your Boat

Out There: Row Row Row Your Boat

Out There: Row Row Row Your BoatFor the past 40 years, Sagamore Rowing Association in Oyster Bay has trained thousands of rowers. Operating out of a historical building overlooking the bay which holds more than 80 rowing boats, called shells, they’ve trained Olympians, National Team medalists—and me.

On Sagamore’s list of the Top 10 Things to Know About Rowing, No. 6—it only looks easy—is the golden nugget. Rowing takes technique and to fully master it, me and seven other students head indoors to use the rowing machines.

For those who have never rowed before, it’s not as simple as just moving the oars. No. 1 on the list—even though it looks like an upper body sport, rowing is all in the legs.

The instructor tells us what we’ll have to do when on the boat: Push hands forward, oars flat on the water. Reach as for forward as possible. Bend your knees so the seat moves all the way up. Roll your wrists so the oars are parallel above the water. Pull the oars back. Lean back. Repeat.

There are two kinds of rowing—sweep, where each person has one oar and uses two hands to control it, and sculling, where each person has two oars, one on each side for each hand.

For our first ride we are sculling, with four people in a shell. But we have to get the shell to the water first—a shell that is nearly 40-feet long (and less than 2-feet wide) and weighs more than 100 pounds. There are dozens of them  stacked on racks from floor to ceiling. We’re using the one on the fourth level. In order to get this monster down, each rower stands equal distance apart. And balances their portion of the weight on their shoulder. I’m only 5’2” tall, so I’m one of the not-so-lucky ones who gets the end where all the weight tends to fall.

With the metal of the shell digging into my shoulder and my arms not strong enough to lift it off, I try to slide a few fingers between my bone and the sharp edge and we inch down a hill to the water.

The thing I’ve learned about hills, especially from riding my bike around the North Shore, is that when you go down one, no matter how hard you try to avoid it, you’re going to end up climbing another one on the return trip. But I’d worry about that later.

Now we not-so-gently get the shell in the water and four of us have to balance our way into our seats without flipping over. Because that would be embarrassing and there would be plenty of greater opportunities for that later. After a few rocky steps, we all manage to get in perfectly. Now it’s time to figure out how to move.

Not only do you have to follow the above rowing steps in the right order, but you have to do it in sync with three others in order for the shell to actually go anywhere. This is harder than it looks.

As bullet No. 6 continues, “Great rowing looks graceful and fluid, but don’t be fooled. Pulling oar blades smoothly and effectively through the water while balancing a boat that may be as narrow as 11 inches; across with 10-12 foot oars is very difficult work. Watch how quickly that graceful motion before the finish line turns into pain and gasping for air afterwards.”

Oh, and the shell only moves backwards.

By the third lesson, we were a well-oiled machine and my right shoulder was turning from purple to black. It was the return from the water that did the most damage. On those uphill walks all the weight of the boat would fall to me on the back end. But I was getting used to it and the next day we had proved to our instructor that we were capable of venturing out for our first distance trip on the water.

At the time I was answering the news desk phone and couldn’t leave till 6 p.m. So in order to make sure I was on time for our trip, I changed into my shorts and t-shirt and sneakers under my desk so I could leave at six on the dot. My friend Lauren, who signed us up for the lessons, was waiting downstairs. I jumped in her car and we headed to the water.

As we got closer, the weather wasn’t looking too good. This was our last lesson and lightning would mean the end of our trip before it ever began. When we got there, the wind had kicked up and it was thundering. Trip canceled. It was back to the boathouse to work indoors. The thunder got louder. On my phone I could see there were tornado alerts for our area. But I’ve seen those before, and never once on Long Island have I ever encountered a tornado. No one else seemed concerned about it, and neither was I.

Then the rain came and turned into torrential downpours. The wind was crashing against the boat house and thunder shook the ground. As the rest of our group continued rowing on the machines, Lauren and I were planning an escape route. I peaked out of the boat house, and there was a huge gray mass that looked like smoke and it was coming down from the sky and touching the water, the same water we were supposed to be rowing merrily merrily merrily merrily down.

We had no idea what it was but with 5 minutes left to the lesson, we took off. The next morning I put the TV on and the first thing I heard was that a water spout, essentially a tornado made of water, had touched down in Oyster Bay the evening before.

So, the bad news—our rowing trip never got off the ground. The good news—neither did we.