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The Long Island Press

Do This: Long Island Events – June 8 – 14

Ringo Starr Long Island
Ringo Starr will be performing at the NYCB Theatre in Westbury on June 11. (Photo credit: Facebook)

14th Annual Arts Festival By The Bay
Have you ever pet a llama, ridden a pony, jigged to Hibernians and sampled a spread of goodies too damn mouth-watering to explicitly detail among the pages of a weekly events calendar, all in the same day!? Me neither! But that’s what we’ll be able to do if we head down to this festival extravaganza! There will be food, a petting zoo, pony rides and live music across a spectrum of genres (yes, including the Hibernian Festival Singers), as well as a host of artists and vendors! More than 20,000 people enjoyed this spectacular festival-wonderland last year. Perhaps they’ll be even more out enjoying the food and music this time around. What a way to celebrate the summer! Damn, those ponies are cute! Main Street in Bay Shore. bayshorecommerce.com Free. 11 a.m. – 6 p.m. June 8

Forever In Your Mind/This Is All Now/Matt Weiss/Lexxi Saai/Al Calderon/Call The Station
It’s a boy band/girl heartthrob explosion sure to have all the suburban teeny- and tweeny-boppers swooning—especially if they’re anything like X-Factor judge Kelly Rowland, who gushed over Holbrook’s own Al Calderon after his performance at last year’s premiere. Revolution, 140 Merrick Rd., Amityville. revolutionli.com $10 ADV/$12 DOS. Doors: 5:30 p.m. June 8

Photo credit: www.pixabay.com
Photo credit: www.pixabay.com

Spring Farm Festival
Oh yes, oh yes, oh yes, yes, yes! Have you ever herded a sheep? Have you ever sheared a sheep!? Whatever your answer, you will want to herd and shear the sheep that will be at this smorgasbord of activities and demonstrations, including (besides all the sheep-related events), fleece washing, spinning and weaving, carding and natural dying. As if that was not enough, there will also be antique tractors and demonstrations by the Islip Horse Drill Team, along with live music, children’s activities and lots and lots and lots of fun, fun, fun! Smithtown Historical Society, 245 Middle Country Rd., Smithtown. smithtownhistorical.org Adults $5/Children $3. 12 p.m. – 4 p.m. June 8

Clutter
God works in mysterious ways, indeed. When the Blessed Virgin appears through a water stain on her garage door, hoarder Linda Bradford (played by Academy Award nominee and two-time Emmy Award-winner Carol Kane) has her entire world turned upside-down—and her dysfunctional family must come together in order to save their precious home. Filmed on LI, this comedic tale is bound to spark some laughs and melt some hearts. There will be live music during its reception by guitarist Mike Soloway and Kane will be making a rare personal appearance with the film’s screenwriter Paul Marcarelli (aka “The Verizon Guuy”). Foster Hirsch will be the guest interviewer. Cinema Arts Centre, 423 Park Ave., Huntington. cinemaartscentre.org Members $18/Public $23. 7:30 p.m. June 9

Buddy Guy

Buddy Guy
A performance from this caliber of bluesman is what Long Islanders came to expect from this venue’s predecessor, The IMAC. The 77-year-old Rock and Roll Hall of Famer is credited with inspiring such well-known acts as Eric Clapton. Rolling Stone ranked him and his song “Stone Crazy” among the 100 best guitarists and guitar songs, respectively. With Matt Andersen. The Paramount, 370 New York Ave., Huntington. paramountny.com $38.50-$98. 8 p.m. June 11

Ringo Starr and His All-Starr Band
The loveable former mop-top has been touring with different reincarnations of his all-star supergroup for more than 20 years, with each lineup offering listeners not only show-stopping classics from the Beatles’ unparalleled canon, but an assortment of numbers from his solo career as well as gems from those accompanying that particular outing. Past members have included Joe Walsh, Aerosmith’s Steven Tyler and even Bruce “The Boss” Springsteen. This time around, Starr’s magnetic personality and legendary drumming will be accompanied by Mr. Mister’s Richard Page, Toto’s Steve Lukather, Todd Eundgren, Gregg Rolie (Santana’s original singer) and drummer Gregg Bissonette. So expect not only “Yellow Submarine” (which if you saw Starr’s rendition on the Beatles Grammy salute a few months back, will have the entire Theatre singing and celebrating along), but also Toto’s “Africa,” Mr. Mister’s “Broken Wings,” “Rundgren’s “I Saw The Light” and Santana’s “Black Magic Woman.” What about “Octopus’ Garden,” you ask? Only one way to find out! Not-to-be-missed. NYCB Theatre at Westbury, 960 Brush Hollow Rd., Westbury. venue.thetheatreatwestbury.com $79.50-$116.50. 8 p.m. June 11

Butchers Blind & Mike Feeney: A Night of Music and Comedy
Alt-country has a name, and it is Butchers Blind. Formed in 2009 in Bellerose by Pete Mancini, Paul Cianciaruso, Brian Reilly, and Christopher Smith, the group has been signed with Huntington-based indy label Paradiddle Records since 2011. The band will be ripping through tracks off their latest groovy, rockin’ spitfire, Destination Blues, as well as their stellar debut record, Play for the Films. B-squared shares the stage this night with Long Island funnyman Mike Feeney, whose hilarious musings on food, entertainment and life in general are bound to have the entire house in stitches from laughing so damn hard. Giggling now just thinking about it. Go to this gig! The Space. 250 Post Ave., Westbury. thespaceatwestbury.com Free. 9 p.m. June 12

Lynyrd Skynyrd
The Southern rock legends bring all their infectious anthems and soul-satisfying down-home blues-infused rock ’n’ roll to Westbury, for an evening that’s sure to have all in attendance dancin’ and singin’ along. Expect all the classics, such as “Sweet Home Alabama,” “Simple Man” and of course, the epic “Free Bird.” NYCB Theatre at Westbury, 960 Brush Hollow Rd., Westbury. venue.thetheatreatwestbury.com $53.50-$147.10. 8 p.m. June 12

Visions of the World
Visions of the World (Photo credit: Gold Coast Arts Center)

Visions of the World
Gold Coast Arts Center’s latest exhibition, “Visions of the World,” will highlight photographic interpretations of cultural diversity bound to amaze and inspire. Featured photographers include Emily Corbato of the Scholar of Women’s Studies Research Center at Brandeis University; Fran Kaufman, an internationally known jazz photographer; Robert Scott, the president of Adelphi University; and many others who transcend time and space to capture the sheer, unbridled beauty, and essence, of life itself. Wow. With opening night reception, of course. Gold Coast Arts Center. 113 Middle Neck Rd., Great Neck. goldcoastarts.org 6 p.m. June 12 through June 28

Yoga

Yoga at the Farm
Time to lose the stress. Time to relax, stretch those muscles and open your heart. Time for some yoga down at the farm! Join yoga instructor Carolyn and enjoy fresh organic veggie juice while discovering your inner peace through therapeutically soul-satisfying exercises designed specifically to de-stress, re-charge and re-vive your body and spirit. Sang Lee Farms, 25180 Middle Rd., Peconic. sangleefarms.com $15. Thursdays, 8 a.m. Saturdays, 10 a.m. Through September

Photo credit: DickDaniels/ www.carolinabirds.org
Photo credit: DickDaniels/ www.carolinabirds.org

North Shore Land Alliance Owl Prowl
Who? Whooooo! Who’s there? Is that you, Peter? No. It is our feathery, talon-ed friends, the owls. Mysterious, elusive, and absolutely fascinating, these winged predators of the night will be on full display on this special moonlight trek, with Huntington-Oyster Bay Audubon Society President Stella Miller mimicking their spooky, ancient owl-call language the whole way! Hope Goddard Iselin Preserve, Upper Brookville. northshorelandalliance.org Free. 8 p.m. June 12

Guitar Gods 2014
Swedish guitar virtuoso Yngwie Malmsteen, who was hailed by Time Magazine in 2009 as one of the 10 greatest electric guitarists of all time, will be painting otherworldly visions of transcendental shredding along with German guitar madman Uli Jon Roth (of Scorpions infamy), guitar demigod Gary Hoey and Bumblefoot, of Guns N’ Roses. Will the barrage of notes wipe away any preconceived notion of what you thought a guitar could do? Yes. Will there be shredding? Lots and lots of mind-blowing shredding? Oh, most definitely. Will it feel as if you are being covered, not just your body, but your entire soul, your very existence, in some extraterrestrial world of six-string nirvana!?!? Yes, but yes, of course! The Paramount, 370 New York Ave., Huntington. paramountny.com $42.50-$76. 8 p.m. June 13

Cousin Fungus, Mr. Hand, and Fire & Ice at 89North
The Stanziale brothers’ band Cousin Fungus (formerly Stash and St. Ash) will rip through originals before Mr. Hand tears through 1970s and ’80s prog rock and metal and Fire & Ice bring down the house with the music of Pat Benatar. Whaaaaat!? Wow. 89 North Ocean Avenue, Patchogue. 89northmusic.com $10. 8 p.m. June 13

Marvels and Monsters: Unmasking Asian Images in U.S. Comics, 1942-86
Whether you’re a fan of comics or simply history, this selection of images of Asians and Asian Americans in mainstream comics from four defining decades of American history is sure to educate and engage. They’re situated in historical context and part of a discourse with such contemporary Asian American creators and writers such as Ken Chen, David Henry Hwang, Larry Hama and more. This exhibit enables visitors to literally put themselves “inside the image,” and features a host of other elements that encourage direct engagement with the archetypes. Powerful stuff. Definitely worth checking out. The Wang Center at Stony Brook University, Charles B. Wang Center Suite 302, Stony Brook. stonybrook.edu Free. Through July 27

Wanda Sykes

Wanda Sykes
The Emmy Award-winning comedian and actress will be dishing out her brand of knee-slapping, stitch-splitting hilarity sure to leave all those in attendance laughing, laughing, laughing long after the gig is through. NYCB Theatre at Westbury, 960 Brush Hollow Rd., Westbury. venue.thetheatreatwestbury.com $52-$92.40 8 p.m. June 14

Cosmos Soccer Stadium Question Lingers Amid Belmont Stakes

New York Cosmos Stadium Proposal
Artist rendering of the New York Cosmos' proposed stadium. The proposal, dubbed “Elmont Town Crossings,” includes a hotel, office space, entertainment and retail complex.

[dropcap]A[/dropcap] four-way race is down the stretch at Belmont Park in Elmont and the winner could impact future Belmont Stakes—but these contenders don’t include horse racing’s Triple Crown hopeful, California Chrome.

Rather, four developers are vying for the green light from the New York State Empire State Development Corp., which nearly two years ago requested privately financed proposals to redevelop 36 acres of land near Belmont—the most ambitious of which being the revived New York Cosmos soccer club’s suggested $400-million, 25,000-capacity stadium. The Cosmos won the North American Soccer League title to cap off their debut season last year. The team currently plays its games at James M. Shuart Stadium at Hofstra University.

“To transform into something greater, something that appeals to millions more people, we must have entertainment beyond our sporting activity,” Christopher Kay, President and CEO of the New York Racing Authority that runs Belmont, Aquaduct and Saratoga racetracks said at the board’s May 28 meeting. “We must have differentiated places for our guests to have fun.”

The Cosmos’ proposal, dubbed “Elmont Town Crossings,” includes a hotel, office space, entertainment and retail complex. Real-estate investors and developers Engel Burman Group, based in Garden City, and Basser-Kaufman of Woodmere, have submitted a joint proposal involving retail space, a community center, a large-scale supermarket, and soccer field. A Manhattan real estate firm, Related Companies, proposed a similar plan but without a soccer field. The Syosset-based real estate development firm, Blumenfeld Development Group, propositioned for a “Big Box Store,” such as a Best Buy or Home Depot, which will be surrounded by restaurants, a community center and athletic fields.

NYRA saw a roughly 80-percent drop in thoroughbred-horse-racing bets since interest began declining four decades ago, according to former NYRA board member Bennett Liebman. But Belmont, which banks on the excitement surrounding the possibility of the first Triple Crown winner in three decades, is not alone in trying to get get creative to mitigate waning interest besides such big-ticket events. Aqueduct Racetrack now features a “racino” with video slot machines, and Saratoga Race Course, which is pushing to expand its racino into a full-fledged casino. Television upgrades, new restaurants and state-of-the-art sports bars are just some of the amenities NYRA added within the past year at all three tracks.

New York Cosmos
The New York Cosmos, seen here playing a preseason match with Leyton Orient at the Matchroom Stadium in London, will start their debut season Saturday, Aug. 3, 2013 at Hofstra University.

“Horse racing track operators are attempting to lure younger crowds with music and food festivals,” IBISWORLD, a company that specializes in industry research, said in a recent report. “Some operators spend thousands of dollars to invite popular music performers to attract younger people.”

Look no farther for attempts to lure younger crowds than the Belmont Stakes Racing Festival, featuring musical performers LL Cool J and Frank Sinatra, Jr.

NYRA has also worked its way into the digital sphere, appeasing Internet junkies when it launched a Roku channel allowing customers to watch a live high-definition stream of the races at Aqueduct Racetrack, Belmont Park and Saratoga Race Course.

But, the bigger racino expansions can have a down side, experts say.

“Racinos can potentially put money back into the industry in the form of prize money or money to upgrade facilities,” said Philip McManus, co-author of “The Global Horseracing Industry: Social, Economic, Environmental and Ethical Perspectives.”

“But at their worse they can generate an incentive for owners/trainers to put a racehorse in a race above its station and, often with the assistance of performance-enhancing drugs and with little regard to the welfare of the horse, try to win a major purse.”

As far as the soccer idea goes, State Sen. Jack Martins (R-Mineola) has publicly endorsed the Cosmos’ bid. But, Nassau County legis. C. Solages (D-Elmont) and his sister, Assemb. Michaelle Solages (D-Elmont), are opposed to the soccer deal and are pushing for the alternatives that offer a supermarket, since the closest full-scale supermarkets are outside Elmont’s borders. They also question the interest in soccer (observers for years have debated the American sports fan’s devotion to the game) and traffic such a stadium could bring to the vicinity. The Cosmos’ average attendance last season at James M. Shuart Stadium, which seats 11,929, was 6,859. By comparison, the New York Red Bulls, currently the only local Major League Soccer team (they play in New Jersey) averaged 19,461 during home games at Red Bull Arena, which has a capacity of 25,189.

Despite the big bets on the table, the Belmont Park decision has reportedly been delayed time and time again, like the elusive Triple Crown last won by Affirmed in 1978.

Triple Crown Excitement Grips Belmont Stakes – Here’s How to Celebrate

California Chrome Triple Crown
Last year's Triple Crown hopeful California Chrome (pictured above) (Photo credit: Kevin Kane)

The 146th Running of the Belmont Stakes is coming to Belmont Park this Saturday. California Chrome, the winner of the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness Stakes, is vying to become the first horse to win the Triple Crown since 1978.

Here are weekend events to celebrate the biggest horse-racing event of the year.

Garden City Belmont Stakes Festival

The 17th annual festival will feature live performances from the Broadway Bound Dance Center and four local musical ensembles: the Fivestone Rock Band, Jerry & the Newcomers, the New Vintage Orchestra and Nor’easter. There will also be food, clowns, face painting and pony rides. The festival includes the Wing-Off Competition for local restaurants contending to create the best wings. The competition benefits the Ace in the Hole Foundation in honor of First Lieutenant Michael LiCalzi, a Garden City native who was killed during Operation Iraqi Freedom. Seventh Street, Garden City gardencityny.net 6-10 p.m. Friday, June 6.

California Chrome Triple Crown
Triple Crown hopeful California Chrome prepares for the Belmont Stakes. (Photo credit: Kevin Kane)

The Belmont Stakes at 21

The Midtown bar and restaurant 21 is hosting a special broadcast of the Belmont Stakes. This horse-racing themed establishment always turns on its televisions for each leg of the Triple Crown. Belmont Jewels and other bar treats will be served. 21 West 52nd Street, New York. 21club.com. $55. 4:30 p.m., June 7.

Exhibit to Celebrate Thoroughbred Horse Racing

The Floral Park Art League will host its annual spring art show to display equestrian-themed artwork, including ink sketches, oil paintings, and watercolors from more than a dozen artists. Each year, the winning piece of the art competition is displayed at the Belmont Park race track. Memorial Park, Floral Park. floralparkartleague.org 3-7 p.m. June 7, 2-6 p.m. June 8.

Floral Park Belmont Stakes Festival

The annual street fair will take place adjacent to the art show with food, clowns, face painting, raffles and street performers. Live music will be provided by DJ Stephen Wickes from One Sound Label and local bands such as RAKE, John Kouris and the Hambones, The RVO Band, Rear View Mirror, Blue Eyed Soul and The Real Deal. The Long Island Bulldog Rescue will also be there to show off some of its pups. Tulip Avenue between Plainfield Avenue and Verbena Avenue, Floral Park. floralparkchamber.org 2-7 p.m. June 8.

California Chrome’s road to the Belmont Stakes:

Suffolk OKs Bill Targeting Puppy Mills

Suffolk County legislators unanimously voted Tuesday to pass a bill that would prohibit pet stores and dealers from selling dogs that have been bred at inhumane dog farms known as puppy mills.

The bill, if Suffolk County Executive Steve Bellone signs it into law, would create $500 fines for pet retailers that buy animals from breeders that have received violations on recent inspection reports from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).

“This bill is a verifiable way to prevent pet stores from buying animals from disreputable breeders,” said Legis. Jay Schneiderman (I-Montauk), who co-sponsored the bill with Dr. William Spencer (D-Centerport).

The Companion Animal Protection Society, one of several animal advocacy groups that expressed support for the bill, credited Suffolk lawmakers with being the first in New York State to take advantage of a state law passed in January that allows local governments to more strictly regulate pet dealers.

Before the vote, one supporter compared allowing puppy mills to abuse dogs to “letting a pedophile teach kindergarten.”

Pet stores would be required to make their most recent USDA inspection reports and their animals’ states of origin available to customers. The bill also mandates that stores keep each invoice from their animal suppliers for at least two years to be given to the county Department of Labor, Licensing and Consumer Affairs, which would enforce the law.

The bill also sets regulations for the size and labeling of animal enclosures in pet stores and prohibits the sale of any pet that is under eight weeks old or in poor health.

Pet dealers will be required to provide fresh water and food to each animal at least twice a day as well as sterilization services for customers buying animals that are old enough to be spayed or neutered safely.

“This will help protect not only the animals but also the consumers who have had problems with puppy mills in years past,” said Roy Gross, the chief of the Suffolk Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (SPCA). “It’s definitely a step in the right direction.”

Animal legislation has been a hot issue elsewhere on Long Island and in the state recently.

Nassau County lawmakers created the Animal Abuse Registry Law last month, three years after Suffolk did the same—although the Suffolk version has yet to go online. The laws forbid anyone convicted of animal abuse from adopting or buying new pets.

Travel Diary: Family Fun Time at Lake George [Sponsored]

Lake George is the perfect June family getaway and just a Honda Odyssey drive away!

Lake George is a road trip-worthy destination from Long Island, filled with everything from old-fashioned rustic resorts to the high-end magisterial beauty that is The Sagamore Resort. The lake itself is an oasis of maritime enjoyment, with paddle boat and jet ski rentals, parasailing adventures and sunset voyages on the Minne-Ha-Ha, Lake George’s regal steamboat.

Generations of families have created sacred traditions of packing up and heading north on the New York State Thruway to the scenic lakeside town. Even if I Spy and repeated renditions of “The Song That Never Ends” have (thankfully) given way to a rotation of Disney films on portable DVD players and iPads in backseats, this well-worn path from Long Island to Lake George is one that has earned its status as the consummate gateway to family togetherness.

Your recipe for the ultimate road trip begins with the perfect family vehicle. The Honda Odyssey will take you wherever you want to go in comfort and style. The third-row seating ensures that everyone sits comfortably. With ample storage for everyone’s luggage, safety features like a backup camera, child safety locks, and side air bags, the Odyssey’s smooth ride make this minivan feel like a sedan.

Click here to learn more about NY Auto Giant

For rustic accommodations, you can pack up your tent in the back of your minivan and head out to one of the many campsites that dot the majestic lake. Check out Camp Orenda or Country Haven Campground for a truly pastoral experience.

For the more elegant-minded, The Sagamore is the ultimate in luxury. Built more than a century ago on Green Island, its stately white peaks can be seen from anywhere on the lake. It offers multiple choices for accommodations, from the private luxury suits of the Hermitage to condominiums, rooms in the historic hotel, lodges, and rooms in what they call the “crown jewel of The Sagamore Resort – Wapanak Castle.”

The Honda Odyssey has plenty of room to fit your entire family comfortably on the trek up to Lake George. Head down to Atlantic Honda and Millennium Honda and drive one today!
The Honda Odyssey has plenty of room to fit your entire family comfortably on the trek up to Lake George. Head down to Atlantic Honda and Millennium Honda and drive one home today!

Hungry? Don’t miss the gourmet offerings of Bistro Le Roux. From fresh-steamed lobster to hearty Osso Buco Pasta, this gluten-free eatery delivers consistently delicious grub. Dine on the Stuffed Shrimp Gemelli. Treat yourself to some Apple Braised Chicken Waldorf. Unwind with a sumptuous cocktail. Try the mojito made from freshly picked mint right from the restaurant’s garden. (Thank us later!)

Click here to learn more about NY Auto Giant

For a more casual and family friendly feast, check out the restaurant popular among locals—The Log Jam Restaurant. Fresh steak and seafood abound, along with hearty burgers and sandwiches. Don’t skip the smashed potatoes! For a real treat, try the homemade desserts, like the crème caramel.

For a full list of everything to do/see/experience on Lake George, check out visitlakegeorge.com.

The sun is shining, the kids will be off from school this month—it’s the perfect time to slide into your new Honda Odyssey and hit the road!

To check out a full line of Honda vehicles and to get into your own new or pre-owned Odyssey, call Rick Alessi at Atlantic Honda or Ravel Mejia at Millennium Honda.

The open road beckons.

Great Neck Plaza Village Accused of Housing Discrimination

Village of Great Neck Plaza officials allegedly broke the law by discriminating against affordable-housing applicants based on race, age and disability, a pair of fair-housing nonprofit advocacy groups alleged in a federal lawsuit they filed last week.

The village set discriminatory requirements for residents seeking affordable housing units in a 94-unit rental development called the Maestro, according to the lawsuit filed by Long Island Housing Services (LIHS) and the Fair Housing Justice Center (FHJC). The suit also names the Nassau County Industrial Development Agency, which provided financial assistance to Plaza Landmark, the developer of the Maestro.

“In general theory, without a neutral policy that is applied evenly, these laws tend to maintain the status quo,” said Erik Heins, the attorney for LIHS. “In this case, the racial proportions of the village and the surrounding peninsula are much less balanced than the rest of the county.”

The village code outlines three categories of prospective residents, giving preference to residents of the village and residents of Great Neck Peninsula, both of which are predominately white, over residents of other areas of Nassau County. Seventy-eight percent of the village population and 74 percent of the peninsula population is non-Hispanic white, according to the 2010 U.S. Census.

“Our primary goal is to make sure that these preferences do not prevent minorities from coming in,” said Diane Houk, the attorney for FHJC.

The code also defines eligible residents in all three categories to be either under the age of 40 or over the age of 65. These requirements violate Nassau County law, Houk said.

The lawsuit is based on a joint investigation conducted by the plaintiffs in 2013. The investigation found, in addition to the residency and age requirements, the village would not allow any applicant with disabilities to have a live-in home health care aide who was not related to the applicant.

Attorneys for the village and county were not immediately available for comment.

The lawsuit is the latest in several accusations of housing discrimination on Long Island. U.S. District Judge Arthur D. Spatt ruled in December that a Garden City zoning ordinance discriminated against minority residents. And the U.S. Department of Justice filed a lawsuit against the Town of Oyster Bay in April over alleged discrimination in the town’s affordable housing programs.

N.Y. Attorney General Pressed Red Cross on Post-Sandy Spending, Then Retreated

Last month we explored the role of the American Red Cross after Hurricane Sandy and the lack of transparency in how the charity spent more than $300 million raised after the storm. Experts criticized the group for not offering a detailed accounting of its post-Sandy efforts.

It turns out New York’s attorney general had similar questions for the prominent charity, according to a previously unpublished letter the office sent to the Red Cross.

The office of Attorney General Eric Schneiderman last year asked the Red Cross for much of the same detailed financial information that we sought from the group. But no such information was released.

And when the attorney general’s office later came to an agreement with the group about its reporting of financial information after disasters, there were no requirements for anything beyond summary data. That means that it will continue to be difficult to assess the response of the Red Cross to future disasters.

The attorney general’s office requested information from the Red Cross starting soon after Sandy in late 2012 and managed to get some answers.

But in a June 2013 letter, which we obtained through a Freedom of Information Law request, the head of the attorney general’s charities bureau expressed “continuing concerns about fundraising and relief efforts conducted by the American Red Cross in response to Hurricane Sandy.”

The letter asked the Red Cross to:

  • detail its post-Sandy spending including “how much was spent on personnel, supplies, transportation, fuel, rental fees, professional fees, administrative costs, and any other relevant categories.”
  • separate figures it commonly combines as “spent or committed,” a practice that makes it impossible to determine how much aid has been distributed versus merely promised.

No such details have been released. The Red Cross didn’t provide the breakdowns when we asked for them either. (Neither the Red Cross nor Attorney General’s office would say whether the numbers were provided privately.)

[UPDATE 5/28/14: The attorney general’s office said today that it did receive responses last year to its inquiries from the Red Cross. We’ve filed a public records request to get that information.]

Several months later, in October, Schneiderman announced an agreement with the Red Cross covering, among other things, how the group will release information after future disasters. But the deal does not specify how much detail the Red Cross must provide in its post-disaster financial reports. Instead, it simply requires the Red Cross to regularly report  summary financial information.

“The central question that drove the attorney general’s correspondence with the Red Cross — what’s going on with the Sandy money? — was thrown out the window in the final agreement,” said Doug White, a nonprofit expert who directs the fundraising management program at Columbia University.

The Office of the Attorney General did not respond to requests for comment. When we originally reported on the lack of transparency, the Red Cross [said] it issues “regular reports about our spending and programs for disasters such as Sandy.”

They declined to comment this time.

While the agreement doesn’t require the Red Cross to release much in terms of financial details, the organization did agree to stop referencing a particular disaster in fundraising appeals once it determines it has raised enough money to meet the need.

If you have experience with or information about the American Red Cross, including its operations after Sandy, email justin@propublica.org

 

Long Island Press 2014 High School Journalism Awards: A Night To Remember

Hundreds of students, parents and faculty members from high schools across Long Island attended the 2014 Long Island Press High School Journalism Awards gala at Hofstra University's John Cranford Adams Playhouse May 28, 2014.

The 2014 Long Island Press High School Journalism Awards Program was a resounding success, culminating in an awards gala May 28 at Hofstra University’s John Cranford Adams Playhouse that hundreds of high school students, faculty and parents will undoubtedly remember for a long, long time.

The annual awards competition and gala, now in its seventh year, recognizes outstanding high school journalism in print, video and online including reporting, writing, design, artwork and illustration across more than 100 individual categories, ranging from Best Arts Feature to Best Sports Video. Special awards are also presented for Story of the Year, Student Journalist of the Year, Advisor of the Year and Newspaper of the Year.

With more than 1,250 entries from more than two dozen school throughout Nassau and Suffolk, the 2014 contest was unprecedented in its scope and quality of submissions. As always, Long Island Press staffers spent weeks judging the entries and were impressed by the students’ depth and caliber of work.

CLICK TO VIEW PICTURES FROM THE 2014 LONG ISLAND HIGH SCHOOL JOURNALISM AWARDS GALA

Submissions ran the gamut—from colorful arts and entertainment coverage and insightful enterprise and investigative articles to emotionally moving first-person accounts of everything from experiencing the death of loved ones to what it’s like to come face-to-face with racism,” wrote Press Editor in Chief Christopher Twarowski in a special letter to students published within a program booklet distributed at the event. “Students provided in-depth analysis of such hot-button national issues as Common Core and Obamacare to First Amendment rights and the NSA’s surveillance programs. They wrote about the environment, tackling such topics as the contamination of our drinking water supplies to energy efficiency and the importance of recycling. They wrote about government, sports, fashion. They wrote about food, technology, health, humor, the prom and war.

“From breathtaking photo spreads and smart, gripping headlines to elements such as layout, flow, placement of graphics and artwork, use of pull-quotes and headlines—entrants in the design categories were likewise impressive,” he continued. “So were students’ video submissions, which included powerful public service announcements about homelessness, bullying and sexual acceptance, among other issues.

“Of course, all of these topics, no matter how far-reaching, have local consequences and ramifications, and students did an outstanding job documenting them,” added Twarowski. “Their coverage of ongoing Superstorm Sandy recovery efforts to the pressures faced by teenage girls to fit society’s unhealthy interpretation of beauty added perspectives all-too-easily ignored by some local news outlets.”

The gala kicked off with an introduction from Press Associate Publisher Beverly Fortune, followed by opening remarks by Press Publisher Jed Morey and a keynote address from Evan Cornog, Ph.D., dean of The Lawrence Herbert School of Communication at Hofstra University.

It would have not been possible, of course, without the continued tremendous support of its sponsors: Hofstra University, The Lawrence Herbert School of Communication, Bethpage Federal Credit Union, Farrell Fritz, PC and Long Island Compost.

The annual awards gala was once again emceed by award-winning journalist, broadcaster, Press Club of Long Island board member and Long Island Press High School Awards Program Coordinator (and all-around superhero) David North, who interspersed the hundreds of student’s names and their respective honors with knee-slapping jokes and observations.

“Ice Cream Review,” he declared, upon announcing the winners of a food criticism category. “Must have been a tough assignment.”

His infectious charm, passion and wit kept the night moving along smoothly, occasionally handing the microphone over to a host of celebrity presenters for truly moving remarks from Dr. Cornog, Long Island Compost President and CEO Charles Vigliotti, Farrell Fritz Director of Marketing Lorraine Sullivan, Bethpage Federal Credit Union Education Counselor Tommy Barbosa and Associate Vice President of Community Development Robert Suarez, and Town of Hempstead Receiver of Taxes Don Clavin, who also cracked jokes and had the crowd laughing.

Press staffers also had their turn presenting, with inspiring words by Press Managing Editor Timothy Bolger, Press Senior Editor Spencer Rumsey, Press Staff Reporter Jaime Franchi, Milieu Magazine Lifestyle Editor Sara Fingerman, Press Multimedia Reporter Rashed Mian and Morey Publishing Graphic Designer Jon Chim, whose short but powerful remarks were sure to invoke at least a few starry eyes from those in attendance.

“Art and design are critical components of a truly great story,” declared Chim. “Photographs and masterful illustrations can elevate any article and make them works of art in themselves. Exceptional design work can streamline a story, directing the readers’ eyes and hearts to its most impactful and emotional elements.

“A great news story is not merely an account of how, what, where, when and why,” explained [#Tomothy] Bolger. “Yes, it contains all of those elements, but a great news story is truly so much more. A great news story captivates the reader from the first syllable. A great news story shows both sides of the issue. A great news story leaves no stone unturned, serves to inform and incite, and is a catalyst of meaningful reflection and action.

“A great news story affects people,” he continued. “It is a public service.”

Special awards were dedicated to Aura Diaz, the 16-year-old mother from Brentwood who was murdered in 2005 and Andrea Rebello, the 21-year-old Hofstra junior who tragically lost her life in a shooting last year.

Twarowski dedicated the contest’s Investigative & Enterprise Journalism Award to two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative journalist Robert “Bob” Greene, who besides being a force of nature out in the field, was also a powerhouse for good in the classroom and a longtime teacher at the university. The legendary Newsday editor was also instrumental in founding Hofstra University’s journalism and communication programs.

One of the things I love most about journalism is its power to illuminate,” proclaimed Twarowski. “To expose secret truths. To shine a light on all the dark places. To disinfect, and drown out darkness.

“Investigative journalism strips away the veneer put forth by those seeking to disinform the public and repackage reality toward their own ends,” he continued. “It unmasks the shadowmakers, holds them accountable, and amplifies the voices of the voiceless. The best causes change.

“Hofstra University has long been a proponent and incubator of this special craft,” he explained. “These walls were in fact the longtime home of two-time Pulitzer Prize-winner Bob Greene, known as the father of investigative team reporting. Besides helping found the nonprofit Investigative Reporters and Editors, he spearheaded what has been called the finest hour in American journalism—the Arizona Project, in which he led a team of volunteers from 10 newspapers to investigate and expose those behind a car bombing that killed Arizona Republic Investigative Reporter Don Bolles. Their resulting 23-part series was published simultaneously in newspapers across the country, and taught Bolles’ killers and future would-be assassins of journalists several powerful lessons: You can not murder a journalist without repercussions. The story will not only continue, but will grow exponentially. If you come after one of us, we will come after you 100-fold. All journalists are family, bound by truth, mission and blood-red ink.

“Greene, a former Newsday editor, is also credited with building and obtaining national accreditation for Hofstra University’s journalism and mass communication programs,” continued Twarowski. “A much beloved teacher and mentor, it’s here at Hofstra that he shared his own love of journalism in pursuit of the truth, here he taught countless students the responsibilities that come along with being a journalist, here he honed their skills, unlocked their inner muckraker, and instilled within them the secrets and wonders of this most sacred calling and most hallowed craft.

“It is only fitting, therefore, that from now on this award will bear his name.”

HERE’S THE COMPLETE LIST OF 2014 LONG ISLAND PRESS HIGH SCHOOL JOURNALISM AWARDS WINNERS:

 

STORY OF THE YEAR

FIRST PLACE. Nelson Gomez – Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Pearson Publications Probed by Pundits and Professors”

SECOND PLACE. Melissa Holzberg – Commack High School, The Courant
“Wait, Like, You Totes Sound Like A Kardashian”

THIRD PLACE. Jenna Rudolfsky – Calhoun High School, Hoofbeats
“Are Exams Way Off Base?”

STUDENT JOURNALIST OF THE YEAR

FIRST PLACE (FOR TWO YEARS IN A ROW). Brianne Garrett – Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo

SECOND PLACE. Rebecca Spina – Calhoun High School, Hoofbeats

THIRD PLACE. Renjini Antony – New Hyde Park Memorial High School, The Chariot

HONORABLE MENTION. Melissa Holzberg, Commack High School, The Courant

 

ADVISOR OF THE YEAR

FIRST PLACE. Walt Fishon – Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo

SECOND PLACE. Elyn Coyle – Massapequa High School, The Chief

THIRD PLACE. Christina Semple – Commack High School, The Courant

HONORABLE MENTION. Jodi Kahn, Great Neck North High School, Guide Post

 

NEWSPAPER OF THE YEAR

FIRST PLACE. Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo

SECOND PLACE. Massapequa High School, The Chief

THIRD PLACE. W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard

HONORABLE MENTION. Shoreham-Wading River High School, Wildcat Pause

 

REPORTING & WRITING AWARDS

ARTS FEATURE

1. Haley Zirkel and Siddesh Ramesh
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“5 Pointz”
2. Antoine Blythe
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“Despite Box Office Draw, Women Lacking in Film”
3. Brianne Garrett
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“Television is a Woman’s World”

ARTS REVIEW – THEATER
1. Sam Newman
Jericho High School, JerECHO
“Let’s Murder Marsha is a Killer”
2. Kennedy Rose
Bellport High, The Clipper
“Singing in the Rain”
3. Katie Lucey
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Chilly Town with Warm Hearts: Reviewing ‘Almost Maine’”

ARTS REVIEW – VIDEO GAMES
1. Gregory Kothesakis
New Hyde Park Memorial High School, The Chariot
“Having A Grand Old Time in Los Santos”
2. Hayley Zirkel
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“Gotta Catch ‘Em All”
3. Kevin J. McCann
North Shore High School, The Viking View
“Video Games and Violence: Is There a Connection?”

ARTS REVIEW – BOOK REVIEW
1. Brianna Paoli
Calhoun High School, Hoofbeats
“Stealing the Heart of Readers”
2. Mikaela Adwar
Jericho High School, JerECHO
“’My Beloved World’ Review”
3. Catherine Darcy
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“YA novel ‘Divergent’ Worthy Entertainment”

ARTS REVIEW- LOCAL MUSIC
1. Rebecca Spina
Calhoun High School, Hoofbeats
“The best band you never heard of: Corey Balsamo”
2. Sam Newman
Jericho High School, JerECHO
“Jericho’s Noteworthy Perform at Carnegie Hall”
3. Ana Guitierrez
Lynbrook High School, Horizon
“LHS Orchestra’s Rock and Pop Concert”

ARTS REVIEW- NATIONAL MUSIC
1. Rebecca Spina
Calhoun High School, Hoofbeats
“Best band You Never heard of: This Century”
2. Rebecca Spina
Calhoun High School, Hoofbeats
“Best band You Never heard of: Jesse Ruben”
3. Maggie Colbert
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“VMA-mazed”

ARTS REVIEW – ALBUM
1. Taylor Kang
Jericho High School, JerECHO
“The Next Day” David Bowie Album Review
2. Renjini Antony
New Hyde Park Memorial High School, The Chariot
“Not So Basic”
3. Kennedy Rose
Bellport High School, The Clipper
“The Second Law, by Muse”

ARTS REVIEW – FILM
1. Jeff Horowitz
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Frozen has Disney’s Warm Touch”
2. Tyler Baron
New Hyde Park Memorial High School, The Chariot
“Russell’s Hustle for the Oscars”
3. Muhammad Muzammal
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“A Rousing Adventure”

ARTS REVIEW – TELEVISION
1. Kevin McCann
North Shore High School, The Viking View
“Giving It All She’s Got: Star Trek’s Importance”
2. Alexus Haddad
Half Hollow Hills High School East, Thunderbird
“Series Review: The Originals”
3. Collin Giuliani
Half Hollow Hills High School East, Thunderbird
“Grading The Grammys”

ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
1. Ana Borruto
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“Teen Readers say ‘YA!’ to YA Lit”
2. Renjini Antony
New Hyde Park Memorial High School, The Chariot
“The New Prince of Late Night”
3. Eric Mastrota
North Shore High School, The Viking View
“Oh, Lorde”

AURA DIAZ AWARD FOR FIRST-PERSON NARRATIVE
This award is named in memory of the 16-year-old mother from Brentwood who was murdered in 2005.

1. Emily Kulesa
Shoreham-Wading River High School, Wildcat Pause
“Movement for LGBT Rights Hits Home”
2. Sharon Tasnim Ahmed
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“The Time Has Come to Proudly Call My Name”
3. Lyla Dale
Babylon High School, PantherTales.org
“Resiliency: The Key to Success”

BUSINESS REPORTING
1. Andrea Paredes
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“Mall Facelift Brings Eateries”
2. Siddesh Ramesh
W.T. Clark High School, Vanguard
“Hyperloop”
3. Joe Fiola
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Amazon Unveils Drone-based Shipping Service, Seeks to Overcome FAA Hurdle”

COLUMN – SCHOOL
1. Daniel Bar-Lavi
Great Neck North High School, Guide Post
“Danalysis: The Rambling Man”
2. Benjamin Senzer
Syosset High School, The Pulse
“Student Government #3”
3. Catherine Sangiovanni
Commack High School, The Courant
“Unproductive Testing”

COLUMN – GENERAL
1. Liz Cazan
W.T.Clarke High School, Vanguard
“Crossing the Red Line”
2. Maggie Colbert
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“VMA-mazed”
3. Kate Kozuch
Roslyn High School, Hilltop Beacon
“What the Fashion?”

COMMENTARY/CRITICISM
1. Kennedy Rose
Bellport High School, The Clipper
“55 Is Unfair”
2. Noelia Vazquez
East Islip High School, The Broadcaster
“Squeezing Into Society’s Views”
3. Eric Mastrota
North Shore High School, The Viking View
“Urban Outrage”

ANDREA REBELLO COMMUNITY SERVICE AWARD.
This award is named in memory of Andrea Rebello, the 21-year-old Hofstra University junior who lost her life in a shooting last year.

1. Giulia Milana and Marti-Rose Shanker
Jericho High School, JerECHO
“Making A Difference One Tweet At A Time”
2. Joe Fiola
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Rising From The Rubble, Massapequa Breathes”
3. Madison Flotteron
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“Community Drives Increase To Help Those In Need”

BREAKING NEWS
1. Asad Marghoob
Half Hollow Hills High School West, The Roundup
“Carbon Monoxide Poisoning at Legal Seafood”
2. Laura Pugliese
Smithtown High School East, The Matador
“Syria: Crisis In The Middle East”

EDITORIAL
1. Meghana Rao, Nelson Gomez, Matt Colozzo
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Blood drive ban on gays discriminatory, wrong”
2. Vanguard Editorial Staff
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“Trouble for Tsarnaev”
3. Joe Zappa
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“In defense of the printed word in a growing digital world”

EDITORIAL – NATIONAL/INTERNATIONAL
1. Jessica Miller
Shoreham/Wading River High School, Wildcat Pause
“War on terror starts in our own backyard”
2. Anne Flamio
East Islip High School, The Broadcaster
“Accepting All Colors of the Rainbow”
3. Jessica Vestuto
Smithtown High School East, The Matador
“The Power of American Resolve”

EDITORIAL – GENERAL
1. Nelson Gomez and Meghana Rao
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Social NOT-working: The Facebook Dilemma”
2. Arman Nasim
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“Miss America?”
3. Joe Fiola
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Rising from the Rubble, Massapequa Breathes”

EDUCATION- NATIONAL ISSUES
1. John Mirabito
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“Sciences, math see greater push from government”
2. Anthony Romano
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Common app glitch delays deadline, irritates seniors”
3. Alejandro Serrano and Lizzy Volavka
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“Financial struggles making the future not so bright”

EDUCATION – LOCAL ISSUES
1. Nelson Gomez
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Pearson Publications probed by pundits and professors”
2. Bryan Burrowes, Chris Condon, Nicole Horn & Chris Tursellino
Eastport-South Manor Junior-Senior High School, Shark Bites
“Educators Rally at School Forum”
3. Gregory Quist
Southold High School, Sentinel
“Gamberg Stars on Two Teams”

ENERGY REPORTING
1. Lindsay Dieumegard
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“Team of engineers to descend on schools in quest for energy efficiency”
2. Gabrielle Farb
North Shore High School, The Viking View
“An Unbelievable Plan”

ENTERTAINMENT & LIFESTYLE
1. Amanda Blum
Half Hollow Hills High School East, Thunderbird
“Not So Electric Zoo”
2. Kevin J. McCann
North Shore High School, Viking View
“Video Games and Violence: Is There a Connection?”
3. Joaquin Contreras
Oyster Bay High School, The Harbour Voice
“1994: Film’s Greatest Year”

ENVIRONMENTAL STORY
1. Jill Hand
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Is Massapequa Water Contaminated?”
2. Drew Cohen and Evan Silvera
Jericho High School, JerECHO
“5,745,000 Paper Copies a Year at JHS”
3. Jeff Horowitz
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Hybrids, Electric Cars fail to fully fix environmental drawbacks”

FASHION FEATURE
1. Jordan Williams
New Hyde Park Memorial High School, The Chariot
“Stephanie’s Style”
2. Amy Kandora
Southold High School, Sentinel
“Fashion at the Lost and Found”
3. Ryan Dalo
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“Retro Fashion Brings New Life to the Halls”

FEATURE – GENERAL
1. Larry Burnham
East Islip High School, The Broadcaster
“College Concerns from A-Z”
2. Tali Zingman
Lynbrook High School, Horizon
“An Insider’s Look at Teenagers in the Israeli Army”
3. Kelly Granzen
Shoreham-Wading River High School, Wildcat Pause
“Hourglass Figure Takes Time out of Body”

FEATURE – LOCAL
1. Meghana Rao
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“An Unexpected Farewell: Reflecting on the Death of Coach K”
2. Matt Colozzo
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Definition of a Fighter: A personal goodbye to Jake Brice”
3. Jessica Vestuto
Smithtown High School East, The Matador
“Voices of the Past Give Inspiration for the Future”

FOOD – COMMENTARY
1. Sammi Stein
Jericho High School, JerECHO
“Food on Instagram”
2. Giavanna Verdi and Tom Kirby
Shoreham-Wading River High School, Wildcat Pause
“Ice Cream Review”
3. Anna Tobin and Judy Mermelstein
Commack High School, The Courant
“Taco Time!”

FOOD- RESTAURANT REVIEW
1. Brianne Garrett
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“A Little Taste of Peru”
2. Brianne Garrett
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“Diners offer more than just breakfast”
3. Millena Skugar
New Hyde Park Memorial High School, The Chariot
“Burgers Bare it All”

FORMAT BUSTER
1. Binita Shah
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“Clubs at Clarke”
2. Siddesh Ramesh and Hayley Zirkel
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
‘5 Pointz”
3. Aubri Juhasz
Oyster Bay High School, The Harbour Voice
“A Message from the Editor”

FIRST AMENDMENT/FREEDOM OF SPEECH AWARD
1. Carolyn Rogers
Shoreham-Wading River High School, Wildcat Pause
“School Involvement Law Creates Controversial Decisions”
2. Rohit Bachani
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“Privacy Please?”

GOVERNMENT- LOCAL
1. Nicole Lamanna
North Shore High School, Viking View
“Stop… In the Name of Safety”
2. Emily Feigenbaum
Half Hollow Hills High School West, The Roundup
“Is Christie’s Campaign ‘Water Under the Bridge?’”

GOVERNMENT – NATIONAL
1. Siddesh Ramesh
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“A Game of Duplicity”
2. Fatima Ouedraogo
Half Hollow Hills High School East, Thunderbird
“Government Shutdown”
3. Emma La Reddola
Commack High School, The Courant
“The Truth Behind ‘Obamacare’”

HEADLINE – ENTERTAINMENT
1. Maroon Echo Staff/Andrea Paredes
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“Unbe-weave-able: The Hair-Rising Story Behind Extensions”
2. Sam Newman
Jericho High School, JerECHO
“Let’s Murder Marsha is a Killer”
3. Melissa Holzberg
Commack High School, The Courant
“Wait, like, you totes sound like a Kardashian”

HEADLINE – EDITORIAL
1. Harvinder Bassi
New Hyde Park Memorial High School, The Chariot
“A Syri-US Issue”
2. Catherine Sangioranni
Commack High School, The Courant
“Smoking Hot Trend”
3. Armon Nasim
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“Miss America?”

HEADLINE – FEATURE
1. Vincent Coghill
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Winter Blunderland: Snow days cut into school vacations”
2. Giavanna Verdi
Shoreham/Wading River High School, Wildcat Pause
“A Declassified Prom Survival Guide”
3. Alyssa Goodman
Half Follow Hills Hugh School West, The Roundup
“No Shave November For Girls! Let it Grow! Let it Grow!”

HUMOR
1. Rachel Hoffman and Lauren Goldstein
Jericho High School, JerECHO
“Future College Roommate is a Robot”
2. Mia Trentadue
Smithtown High School East, The Matador
“College Roommates for Dummies”
3. Dan Stahl
Southold High School, Sentinel
“Yellow Jackets”

HURRICANE SANDY RECOVERY
1. Molly Schiff
Lynbrook High School, Horizon
“One Year Anniversary of Sandy: Lessons to be Learned”
2. Maddy Gottlieb
Calhoun High School, Hoofbeats
“Lending a Hand”
3. Joe Fiola
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Rising from the Rubble, Massapequa Breathes”

IN-DEPTH REPORTING
1. Melissa Holzberg
Commack High School, The Courant
“Wait, like, you totes sound like a Kardashian”
2. Meghana Rao, Nelson Gomez and Matt Colozzo
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Blood drive ban on gays discriminatory, wrong”
3. Nelson Gomez and Meghana Rao
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Plan B and FDA decision: what students should know”

INFORMATIONAL FEATURE
1. Nelson Gomez and Meghana Rao
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Plan B and FDA decision: what students should know”
2. Margaret Colbert
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“Poverty gains prevalence in suburbia”
3. Samantha Galina
Commack High School, The Courant
“Mirror, Mirror”

INVESTIGATIVE/ENTERPRISE REPORTING AWARD
1. Nelson Gomez
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Pearson Publications probed by Pundits and Politicians”
2. Kathleen Konfino
Commack High School, The Courant
“Watch Your Back: Theft on the Rise”
3. Meghana Rao
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Race Reality: how society, not biology, created race”

MEDIA COLUMN
1. Claudi Ruiz
North Shore High School, The Viking View
“The Wrong Path”
2. Nicole Lamanna
North Shore High School, The Viking View
“Hope For Humanity”

NEWS STORY
1. Jenna Rudolfsky
Calhoun High School, Hoofbeats
“Are Exams Way Off Base?”
2. Rachel Hoffman, Alanna Levine, and Taylor Kang
Jericho High School, JerECHO
“Molly on the rise”
3. Catherine Darcy
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“Budget cuts force clubs, sports cuts”

OPINION- GENERAL
1. Melissa Holzberg
Commack High School, The Courant
“Worth More than a Picture”
2. Meghana Rao
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Race Reality: How Society, not Biology, Created Race”
3. Liz Cazan
W.T. Clark High School, Vanguard
“The Real Problem”

OPINION- NATIONAL
1. Rachel Stearns
Shoreham-Wading River High School, Wildcat Pause
“Crayons, Ovaltine and an AR-15?”
2. Jane Murray
Shoreham-Wading River High School, Wildcat Pause
“Embracing Change”
3. TJ Buttgereit
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“Tagging Liberty”

OPINION- POP CULTURE
1. Rebecca Spina
Calhoun High School, Hoofbeats
“A grave face”
2. Julie Fishbach
Roslyn High School, Hilltop Beacon
“Role Models in Today’s Society”
3. Paige Sokoloff
Smithtown High School East, The Matador
“The Cyrus Saga”

OPINION PIECE- SCHOOL
1. Navi Arneja
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“Waking Up Asleep”
2. Aubri Juhasz
Oyster Bay High School, The Harbour Voice
“Minding Your P’s and Q’s”
3. Jessica Miller
Shoreham-Wading River High School, Wildcat Pause
“Natural Helpers doing more harm than good”

POLITICAL/NATIONAL FEATURE
1. Muhammad Muzammal
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“Violence in America: An Incurable Disease”
2. Matthew Wigler
Great Neck North High School, Guide Post
“Wigged Out: Down to the Core of the Common Core”
3. Ryan Mazzie
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“Military an option for those financially strapped”

PROFILE
1. Brianne Garrett
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“Goodbye, gentle giant”
2. Christina Panouis and Ciara Gallagher
New Hyde Park Memorial High School, The Chariot
“Ken-ya Make a Change?”
3. Tayler Bradford
North Shore High School, The Viking View
“A Girl to Admire and Learn From”

Q&A SCHOOL
1. Bryan Burrowes, Chris Condon, Nicole Horn and Chris Tursellino
Eastport-South Manor Junior-Senior High School, Shark Bites
“A Conversation with Dr. King”
2. Arman Nasim
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“Eureka: The True Story of a Young Scientist”
3. Jessica Caruso
Smithtown High School East, The Matador
“Jaclyn Gallery: East’s Fastest Freshman”

REVIEW/CRITICISM
1. Navi Arneja
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“A Force of Expression”
2. Samantha Calzone
East Islip High School, The Broadcaster
“I Wrote This For You”

RELIGION/MULTICULTURAL
1. Meghana Rao
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Race Reality: How Society, not Biology, Created Race”
2. Carolyn Rogers
Shoreham-Wading River High School, Wildcat Pause
“Peaceful Religion Corrupted for Politics and War”
3. Lyla Dale
Babylon Jr./Sr. High School, PantherTales.org
“Remembering Martin Luther King Jr.”

SCHOOL-FEATURE
1. Julia Hutchinson
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“Students struggle for the high school experience”
2. Renjini Antony
New Hyde Park Memorial High School, The Chariot
“Running More Than the Classroom”
3. Dan Walocha
Lynbrook High School, Horizon
“Nick Kardasis, the Jolly Janitor”
Honorable Mention
Samantha Peterson Sayville High School, The Current
“Mindfulness Battles Stress at Sayville High School”

SCHOOL NEWS
1. Frankie Tomasso
Lynbrook High School, Horizon
“Lynbrook Goes ‘All In’ for Class Night”
2. Meg Tohill
East Islip High School, The Broadcaster
“The Reaping: SADD Fighting Grim Decisions”
3. Melissa Holzberg and Kathleen Konfino
Commack High School, The Courant
“Beat the best, become the best”

SCHOOL SPIRIT
1. Paige Sokoloff
Smithtown High School East, The Matador
“Attention: Enthusiastic, Fun-Loving Livestock Wanted”
2. The Courant Editorial Staff
Commack High School, The Courant
“School Spirit Back with #Mack”
3. Shannon Quinn
Southold High School, Sentinel
“A Measure of Spirit”

SCHOOL CULTURE REPORTING
1. Alanna Levine & Rachel Hoffman
Jericho High School, JerECHO
“Choreo 2014: A Dance to Remember”
2. Meghana Rao
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Race reality: how society, not biology, created race”
3. Collin Giuliani
Half Hollow Hills High School East, Thunderbird
“Football (Anti) Fanatics… The Lack of Support for the HSE Football Team”

SCIENCE/HEALTH
1. Matthew Gillam
Half Hollow Hills High School East, Thunderbird
“Bionic Man Visits HSE”
2. Danielle Ajodan and Won Jung
Great Neck North High School, Guide Post
“The Power of Protein”
3. Maggie Colbert
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“Keep Calm and Veg On”

SOCIAL COMMENTARY – SCHOOL
1. Kennedy Rose
Bellport High School, The Clipper
“55 is Unfair”
2. Isabella Alessandrini
North Shore High School, The Viking View
“GPA = Giant Pressure to Succeed”
3. Stephanie Zelenetz
North Shore High School, The Viking View
“The Syrian Question”

SOCIAL COMMENTARY- GENERAL
1. Liz Cazan
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“The real problem”
2. Kelly Granzen
Shoreham-Wading River, Wildcat Pause
“Society’s Short Tolerance for Short Skirts”
3. Mary Mazzie
Calhoun High School, Hoofbeats
“Patronized by my Patrons”

SHORT FEATURE
1. Ray Epiquin and Savannah Parker-Davis
East Islip High School, The Broadcaster
“Great Strides Made by Black Americans”
2. Emma Cohen
Lynbrook High School, Horizon
“The Trouble with Sochi”
3. Emma Cohen
Lynbrook High School, Horizon
“Coming to School”

SERIOUS FEATURE
1. Tayler Bradford
North Shore High School, The Viking View
“A Girl to Admire and Learn From”
2. Brianne Garrett
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“Poverty Makes It Tough to Make Ends Meet on LI”
3. Brianne Garrett
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“Goodbye Gentle Giant”

SOCIAL MEDIA ANALYSIS
1. Grace Segers
Half Hollow Hills High School East, Thunderbird
“Tragedy in the Age of Twitter”
2. Emma Schwab
North Shore High School, The Viking View
“What’s All the Buzz About?”
3. Nicole Lamanna
North Shore High School, The Viking View
“Forget Diamonds and Dogs. Netflix is your New Best Friend”

SPORTS FEATURE
1. Matthew Rottler
Shoreham-Wading River High School, Wildcat Pause
“Clasen Athletic Star in all Three Seasons”
2. Ryan Mazzie
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“Juiced: High School Athletes Put to the Drug Test”
3. Matthew Rottler
Shoreham-Wading River High School, Wildcat Pause
“Spring Sports Off to Cold Start”

SPORTS- SCHOOL
1. Zach Pekale
Lynbrook High School, Horizon
“Mike McTrey”
2. Evan Schneider
Lynbrook High School, Horizon
“Nembach Swims for States”
3. Brianne Garrett
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“After Decade, Girls Basketball Reaches Playoffs”

SPORTS- NATIONAL
1. Nicolette Danzy
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“Pros Coming Out, But Student Athletes Remain in Closet”
2. Kyle Galin
Roslyn High School, Hilltop Beacon
“Preview of the Madness of March”
3. Katie Cresser
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Islanders and Rangers – Keep your Enemies Close”

STORYTELLING
1. Arman Nasim
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“It’s Kind of a Funny Story…”
2. Larry Burnham
East Islip High School, The Broadcaster
“Looking Back”
3. Althea Mignone
Southold Jr./Sr. High School, The Sentinel
“Christmas Break”

STUDENT ISSUES
1. Gabriel Ajzenman
Lynbrook High School, Horizon
“Parent Portal Paranoia”
2. Claudia Ruiz
North Shore High School, The Viking View
“Unnecessary Requirements”
3. Kayla Gonzalez
Great Neck North High School, Guide Post
“Gym? GPA”

STUDENT PROFILE
1. Katrinia Lastra
Bellport High School, The Clipper
“Soccer Star, Cow Lover, and ‘Queen of the Orchestra’”
2. Arman Nasim
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“Eureka: The Story of a Young Scientist”
3. Danielle Ajodan
Great Neck North High School, Guide Post
“Athlete Spotlight- Josh Namigohar”

TECHNOLOGY
1. Daniel Stahl
Southold Jr./Sr. High School, The Sentinel
“Tech Squad”
2. Jeff Horowitz
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Hybrids, Electric Cars Fail to Fully Fix Environmental Drawbacks”
3. Siddesh Ramesh
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“Hyperloop”

TRAVEL
1. Stephanie Moreno, Ganesh Ravichandran and Erin-Marie Deytquiez
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“Around the World in 21 Days”
2. Jamie Aranoff
North Shore High School, The Viking View
“Place That You May Not Know Exist, But That You Should”
3. Kevin J. McCann
North Shore High School, The Viking View
“North Shore Abroad”

 

NEWSPAPER DESIGN/ILLUSTRATION & HEADLINE

CARTOON

1. Nicholas Dahill
East Islip High School, The Broadcaster
“The Reaping: SADD Facing Grim Decisions”
2. Priyanka Algu
New Hyde Park Memorial High School, The Chariot
“Red Ink for Red Skins”
3. Casey Leach
Bellport High School, The Clipper
“Snowman Crossing”

CARTOON – ENTERTAINMENT
1. Nicholas Colonna
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“Applause Versus Roar”

CARTOON – POLITICAL
1. Fabio Rivera
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“The Debate”
2. Hayley Zirkel
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“Sanctions”
3. Jack Burke
Shoreham-Wading River High School, Wildcat Pause
“Media Programs Young Minds to Unrealistic Standards”

CARTOON/SCHOOL ILLUSTRATION
1. Nicole Caico
East Islip High School, The Broadcaster
“Stress Decay”
2. Priyanka Algu
New Hyde Park Memorial High School, The Chariot
“How to Shape a Well-Rounded Student”
3. Jenna Kaminsky
Lynbrook High School, Horizon
“Lynbrook’s Lethargic Learners”

COMIC STRIP
1. Julia Wolniewicz
Eastport-South Manor Junior-Senior High School, Shark Bites
“Comics”
2. Alanna Petrone
Oyster Bay High School, Harbour Voice
“Solar Academy”

FEATURE DESIGN
1. Haley Zirkel
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“5 Pointz”
2. Nelson Gomez
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Catch-A-Wave”
3. Tiffany Heravi and Ariella Jahaveri
Great Neck North High School, Guide Post
“Oreos Anonymous – The Unexpected Addiction”

LAYOUT – SINGLE PAGE
1. Libby Berman, Irma Purisic and Elisabeth Dicarmine
Lynbrook High School, Horizon
“Spirit Week 2013”
2. Maxx Vogelsberg
East Islip High School, The Broadcaster
“EInstyle”
3. Rebecca Spina
Calhoun High School, Hoofbeats
“Headed In”

LAYOUT/SECTION
1. Siddesh Ramesh
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“Features, Issue 2”
2. Daniella Weinstein and Ludia Och
Roslyn High School, The Hilltop Beacon
“Magazine”
3. Nelson Gomez
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Oliver!”

LAYOUT/FRONT COVER
1. Arman Nasim
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“February 2014”
2. The Chief Editorial Staff
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“June 2013”
3. Gretchen Walter
Southold Jr./Sr. High School, The Sentinel
“Summer 2013”

LAYOUT/OVERALL
1. Maroon Echo Editorial Staff
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“NOV. 2013”
2. Siddesh Ramesh
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“Issue II”
3. Staff
Shoreham/Wading River High School, Wildcat Pause
“NOV. 2013”

NEWS HEADLINE
1. Brandan Lawrence
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Jones Beach Treading Water in Sandy Recovery Efforts”
2. Jessica Graff
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Nicole Heneveld: life’s her stage and she’s directing”
3. Meghana Rao and Nelson Gomez
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Social NOT-working: the Facebook Dilemma”

NEWS ILLUSTRATION
1. Binita Shah
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“Clubs at Clarke”
2. Anne Flamio and Nick Dahill
East Islip High School, The Broadcaster
“Keepin’ it Real, Keepin’ it Green”
3. Julianna Gortakowski
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“Computer Science”

ORIGINAL ILLUSTRATION
1. Kenneth Lau, Kelly Louie, and April Todaro
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“Summer Movie Preview”
2. Nicholas Colonna
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“Java Jolt!”
3. Joelle Benigo
Shoreham-Wading River High School, Wildcat Pause
“Christmas Cheer or Family Feud?”

PHOTO ESSAY
1. Marcus Croteau
Southold Jr./Sr. High School, The Sentinel
“The 39 Steps”
2. Sidesh Ramesh
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“Senior Dinner”
3. Rachel Hirschheimer and Alexis Corbin
Jericho High School, JerECHO
“A Look at Live News”

PHOTOGRAPHY – SERIES
1. Kalleigh Regan
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Oliver!”
2. James Treadwell, Eamonn Lennon, Marvin Pak
New Hyde Park Memorial High School, The Chariot
“Homecoming”
3. Alanna Levine, Taylor Kang, and Ben Kronengold
Jericho High School, JerECHO
“Humans of Jericho”

SINGLE PAGE LAYOUT
1. Giavanna Verdi and Tom Kirby
Shoreham-Wading River High School, Wildcat Pause
“Ice Cream Review”
2. Kelly Granzen and Christina Wilson
Shoreham-Wading River High School, Wildcat Pause
“Media Programs Young Minds to Unrealistic Standards”

SINGLE PHOTO
1. Rachel Shuster
Half Hollow Hills High School West, The Roundup
“’Tis the Season to Give Back”
2. Carolyn Rogers
Shoreham-Wading River High School, Wildcat Pause
“SWR Students Fail the Fight of Toxic Senioritis”
3. Skyler Kessler
Lynbrook High School, Horizon
“PowerSchool Parent Portal Paranoia”

GRAPHIC ART
1. Brandon Lawrence
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Race Composite”
2. Kyle Brown
Shoreham-Wading River High School, Wildcat Pause
“Prom is the Bomb”
3. Kalleigh Regan, Nelson Gomez
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Oliver!”

SPORTS PHOTO
1. Landon Cooper
Calhoun High School, Hoofbeats
“The Unstoppable Sharks”
2. Skyler Kessler
Lynbrook High School, Horizon
“Grossi at LAX Day”
3. Sahib Kalra
W.T. Clarke High School, Vanguard
“Champions Once Again”

NEWSPAPER SPECIAL SECTIONS AWARD
ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
1. Corinne Schmidt
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“My Generation”

 

ONLINE AWARDS

 
ONLINE – ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
1. Tim Keuchler
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Katy Perry’s Album ‘Prism’ Sure to Roar to New Heights”
2. Arianna Scavone
Jericho High School, JerECHO
“Jimmy Fallon Succeeds on ‘Tonight’”
3. Miles Essner
Half Hollow Hills High School West, The Roundup
“Winter Movies You Won’t Want to Miss”

ONLINE – PHOTO SERIES
1. Chloe Citron and Evan Silvera
Jericho High School, JerECHO
“Empowered women of Jericho”
2. Kalleigh Regan
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Mr. Massapequa a Big Success”
3. Brandan Lawrence, Kalleigh Regan, Nelson Gomez
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Chiefs brave Syosset, Win 49-28”

ONLINE – FEATURE
1. Nelson Gomez
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Spirit Week: Recap”
2. Meghana Rao
Massapequa High School, The Chief
“Dr. Pepper Photobomb’ of Baseball Tonight”
3. Olivia Milana and Mikaela Adwar
Jericho High School, JerECHO
“Students Reveal Lack of Knowledge about Marijuana’s Health Risks”

ONLINE – NEWS SITE
1. Staff
Massapequa High School, The Chief
TheChiefOnline.com
2. Chloe Shakin, Taylor Kang, Sam Newman
Jericho High School, JerECHO
jerecho.org
3. Staff
Half Hollow Hills High School West, The Roundup
HillsWestRoundup.com

 

VIDEO AWARDS

 
VIDEO – PUBLIC SERVICE ANNOUNCEMENT
1. Max Wathins, Ryan Cortazzo, Sarah Lane
Commack High School, Public Service Announcement
“Pay It Forward PSA”
2. Brianne Garrett
Bay Shore High School, BSHS News/Maroon Echo
“Roar- An Incusionary Video”

VIDEO – NEWS STORY
1. Kristen Hansen
Hauppauge High School, Eagle Watch News Program
“News Package Life Skills”
2. Kristen Hansen
Hauppauge High School, Eagle Watch News Program
“St. Baldrick’s News Package”
3. Madison Flotteron, Sharon Ahmed, Julia Hutchinson
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“Homecoming Week”

VIDEO – FEATURE STORY
1. Giulia Milana and Marti Rose Shanker
Jericho High School, JerECHO
“Making a Difference: One Tweet at a Time”
2. Nandini Bissoon, Danielle Flynn & Alexis Gallardo
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“Phantom of the Opera”
3. Madison Flotteron, Sharon Ahmed & Julia Hutchinson
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“Promposal”

VIDEO – SPORTS
1. Billy Frielingsdorf
Hauppauge High School, Eagle Watch
“Gymnastics News Story”
2. Ryan Mazze and Imani Mashee
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“Bleacher Creatures”

VIDEO – ARTS & ENTERTAINMENT
1. Andrea Paredes, Nicole Nunez & Tara O’Donovan
Bay Shore High School, Maroon Echo
“The Fault in Our Stars”
2. Gianna Barberia
Half Hollow Hills High School West, The Roundup
“AASO: Spreading Awareness of History and Culture”

 

Congratulations to all!

Do This: Long Island Events May 31-June 7

The Space at Westbury hosts Billy Idol this weekend.

strawberryfest

Nassau County Strawberry Festival
The fruit-themed four-day fair started Thursday, but kicks into high gear this weekend with a fitting Beetles tribute band—Strawberry Fields—7 p.m. Saturday. Everyone’s favorite red produce will be sold in all forms—strawberry shortcake, strawberry cheesecake, chocolate-covered strawberries and strawberry daiquiris. That’s all aside from the usual carnival rides, crafts and a pie-eating contest. Bellmore BOCES School, 2351 Jerusalem Avenue. North Bellmore. nassaucountystrawberryfestival.com 12-11 p.m. May 31, 12-6 p.m. June 1.

Zebra
Long Island’s own legendary saviors and purveyors of rock (via Louisiana), The Mighty Zebra will be shredding through nearly 40 years of hard rock and metal fueled by the superhuman guitar virtuosity of the beloved Randy Jackson. With Youth Be Told. NYCB Theatre at Westbury, 960 Brush Hollow Rd., Westbury. venue.thetheatreatwestbury.com $39.50. 8 p.m. May 31.

The Strokes
Those infectious hipsters that everyone loves to hate/love bring their catchy choruses and addictive melodies to “The Cappler” for a performance that’s sure to have you waking up with your head pounding and brain singing “Last Night” on an annoyingly endless loop. Will they break out such classics as “Someday” and “Hard To Explain”? The elusive B-side “New York City Cops”? “Under Cover of Darkness”!?!? (Which if you haven’t You Tubed the Jingle Punks Hipster Orchestra’s version, you’re insanely missing out, btw. You’re welcome. Our pleasure.) Only one way to find out. Good luck with the scalpers. With Cerebral Ballzy. The Capitol Theatre, 149 Westchester Ave., Port Chester. thecapitoltheatre.com 8 p.m. May 31

Billy Idol
This bad boy may be a Brit, but he lived for a spell in Patchogue as a wee lad before moving back across the pond and eventually helping popularize punk rock. That makes this show a bit of a homecoming for the singer of such hits as “White Wedding,” “Rebel Yell” and “Dancing With Myself.” It comes as he’s reportedly working on his eighth studio album, Kings & Queens of the Underground, due out this fall. The Space at Westbury, 250 Post Ave., Westbury. thespaceatwestbury.com $65-$95. 7 p.m. June 1.

Bethpage Polo at the Park Kickoff
Spectators need not be oligarchs to watch The Sport of Kings. Round up the crew, pack the cooler and spend the day tailgating on the polo field sidelines. And don’t forget to rock some Ralph Lauren gear. Bethpage State Park, 99 Quaker Meeting House Rd., Farmingdale. bethpagepolo.com $5. 2 p.m. June 1 and every Sunday through Oct. 12.

New Nature Trail Opens
Hikers, joggers, bird watchers, nature lovers and families revel in the debut of a new trail along a glacial moraine that features wildlife such as red tailed hawks, red fox, flying squirrels, eastern box turtles, great horned owls, gray catbirds and downey woodpeckers. The three-mile trail is open during daylight hours. Sherwood-Jayne Farm, 55 Old Post Rd., East Setauket. Seatuck.org, splia.org. Free. 10 a.m., June 4.

TheAnonymousPeople

The Anonymous People
A must-see documentary on an Island in the throes of a heroin epidemic. The Anonymous People aims to shed the stigma that surrounds those recovering from drug and alcohol addition by sharing the moving stories of those on the front lines. Sponsored by the Commack-based Center for Soulful Living, a holistic and counseling wellness center. Guest speaker: Jeff Reynolds, executive director of the Long Island Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence. Cinema Arts Centre, 423 Park Ave., Huntington. cinemaartscentre.org $10 members, $15 public. 7:30 p.m., June 4.

Patchogue: The Musical
Some towns on Long Island have mottos, like East Meadow’s “a small community with big ideas.” A few, such as Freeport, have songs written about them. But one village may take the cake now that it inspired its own theater production. Patchogue: The Musical will “musically reflect the diversity of feelings, thoughts, and ideas that thrive in Patchogue.” Patchogue Theater for the Performing Arts, 71 East Main St, Patchogue. Patchoguetheatre.com. $10. 7 p.m., June 4.

Switch Technique
This Philly-based Funk Force evolved from a Live Hip-Hop group to an old-school Funk Ensemble in the tradition of James Brown, recently adding an electric lead vocalist. Their sweet, upbeat grooves just may be the reason it’s always sunny in Philadelphia. The Stephen Talkhouse, 161 Main St., Amaganset. stephentalkhouse.com $30. 10 p.m., June 5.
TheLoneBellow
The Lone Bellow
This soulful, country-inspired, Brooklyn-based indie folk group will be performing their self-titled debut released last year in their first of two stops on the Island. Those who miss this show can catch them at the Stephen Talkhouse in Amaganset the following night. The Boulton Center for the Performing Arts, 37 West Main St., Bay Shore. boultoncenter.org. $35. 8 p.m., June 5.

Local Showcase
There are more musicians on Long Island than just Billy Joel. Check out these feisty, new original acts: The Vinyl Plane, 2 Cent Sam and Czech Funk. The Emporium, 9 Railroad Ave., Patchogue. theemporiumny.com $10. 7 p.m., June 5.

The Plastic Cup Boyz
Featuring comedians Will “Spank” Horton, Na’im Lynn and Lavar Walker, from the Kevin Hart Laugh at My Pain and Let Me Explain tour. The Paramount, 370 New York Ave., Huntington. paramountny.com $37-$49. 7 p.m., June 6.

Joe Satriani
The former Deep Purple guitarist who, legend has it, taught original guitar hero Stevie Vai how to rock, is coming home to Long Island. Read more about the Carle Place High School graduate in a forthcoming profile in the Press. With special guest Sit Down Servant. The Space at Westbury, 250 Post Ave., Westbury. thespaceatwestbury.com $59.50-$99.50. 7 p.m., June 7.

10,000 Maniacs
Natalie Merchant may no longer front the alt-rock quintet from upstate Jamestown, but the group is still producing albums and performing their hits, including “Because The Night,” “These Are Days” and “Candy Everybody Wants.” Give ‘em what they want! The Stephen Talkhouse, 161 Main St., Amaganset. stephentalkhouse.com $70-$85. 6 p.m., June 7.
JackJohnsonn
Jack Johnson
There are fewer fitting stars to lead off the summer concert calendar at our famed waterside amphitheater than this beloved Hawaiian beach-rock crooner. The would-be pro surfer-turned-guitarist/singer whose first five major-label albums went platinum visits local shores in the latest stop on the tour, promoting his recent, sixth release, From Here To Now To You. Nikon at Jones Beach Theater, 1000 Ocean Pkwy., Wantagh. jonesbeach.com $55-$85. 7:30 p.m., June 7.

I Matter Project Reception
This empowering social impact art project for Long Island teens is a call to action to educate and inspire teens to make better life decisions and steer clear of destructive behavior, including substance abuse. If features large-scale portraits of students accompanied by brief statements of why they each matter. Huntington Public Library’s Main Street Branch, 338 Main St., Huntington. imatterproject.org/Huntington. Free. 2-4 p.m., June 7. Presentation at 2:30 p.m.

Robert Earl Keen
Americana singer/songwriter from the Lone Star State known for both story-telling as well as fun bar songs, Robert Earl Keen is an alt-country rock icon and master of the live performance. Break out the cowboy boots, pour a sarsaparilla and saddle up for such hits as “The Road Goes onj Forever,” Corpus Christi Bay” and “That Buckin’ Song.” The Paramount, 370 New York Ave., Huntington. paramountny.com. $40.50-$65. 7 p.m., June 7.

Big Revamp of Pentagon’s Troubled Mission to Find Missing Soldiers Looks a Lot Like Old Revamp

U.S. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel at the Pentagon, March 14, 2013. (DoD photo)

With Congressional pressure and media scrutiny intensifying, the defense secretary came out with a bold plan to fix the Pentagon’s struggling mission to recover remains of missing service members: reorganize the effort into a new agency.

“This new organization provides an efficient management structure for pursuing our goal of obtaining the fullest possible accounting for all missing Americans. Resolving POW/MIA issues is of the highest national priority and we will continue to work vigorously toward this end.”

Those remarks easily could have come from Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel in March when he announced just such a change. But they were actually made two decades ago, by then-Secretary of Defense Les Aspin when the Pentagon first tried restructuring the bureaucracy as a way to solve troubling issues with the effort. Another consolidation, accompanied by similar rhetoric, happened in 2003.

The Pentagon spends about $100 million annually to recover and identify missing service members from the Vietnam War, Korean War and World War II, but identified just 60 last year – far short of the 200 per year mandated by Congress starting next year. A ProPublica and NPR investigation found that the mission was hampered by outdated science, overlapping bureaucracy and poor leadership.

On March 31, Hagel said that the two major agencies in charge 2014 the Joint Prisoners of War/Missing in Action Accounting Command, or J-PAC, and the Defense Prisoners of War and Missing Personnel Office, or DPMO 2013 would be consolidated into one to streamline the inefficient, duplicative process.

This latest restructuring is the broadest one yet, taking on the science used to make identifications and creating public-private partnerships, but it’s unclear whether it will be a reorganization just on paper like it was in the past. Indeed, the two long-troubled, soon-to-be combined agencies, J-PAC and DPMO, are themselves the product of the earlier consolidations.

Critics on Capitol Hill, in family advocacy groups and among former employees of the agencies all said that in order to have meaningful, lasting impact the changes must go beyond bureaucratic reshuffling to instead include new leadership.

“Any time you have a change that is truly philosophical it’s very difficult to accomplish that if the people being tasked with it still believe in the old ways of doing things,” Cmdr. Renee Richardson, a former DPMO staffer, said.

Given the “stories we’re being told, there definitely should be some people who are fired,” Sen. Claire McCaskill, who was one of the vocal critics on the Hill, said in an interview earlier this year.

Acting Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Michael Lumpkin, who is spearheading the changes, said at the time of the announcement that the new agency will be fundamentally new and different, ridding the effort of “outdated, institutionalized thinking.”

But asked if anyone was being held accountable for the problems that led to the need for changes, Lumpkin referred to a “structurally flawed” system rather than leadership.

The agencies’ current leaders might stay a part of the new as-yet-unnamed agency. Although the positions of DPMO director and J-PAC commander will disappear along with the organizations when the new agency is formed in the next 18 months, Lumpkin said, the people who held those positions “may be reclaimed” in the new organization.

The only personnel changes that have been announced are a director for the new agency who will report to the under secretary of defense for policy and an Armed Forces Medical Examiner who will be in charge of making identifications and overseeing the scientific operations of the lab. The latter strips Tom Holland, J-PAC’s longtime scientific director, of his primary authority, but Lumpkin wouldn’t comment on whether Holland would be a part of the new agency.

ProPublica and NPR reported that under Holland’s leadership, the laboratory has not used DNA as the first step in identifying remains, even though DNA has been the centerpiece of similar efforts worldwide for more than a decade.

Lumpkin did say that Hagel was putting the director of the new agency under the Office of the Secretary of Defense because he wanted someone he could hold accountable for the mission’s responsibilities – what Lumpkin called “a single belly button.”

The civilian leadership of DPMO and J-PAC has been entrenched for decades. Holland has been there since 1992. Johnie Webb, the deputy commander for external relations, has been with J-PAC since 1983. The current director of DPMO, retired Brig. Gen. W. Montague “Que” Winfield, was the first commander of J-PAC.

Complicating matters, for years J-PAC and DPMO have battled each other for territory, authority and responsibility.

Ann Mills-Griffith, founder of the lobbying group National League of POW/MIA Families, described the infighting as “destructive bickering.”

“It’s such a noble mission…every person wants the same thing,” said current J-PAC commander Gen. Kelly McKeague. “Where it breaks down – and this is where I shake my head – is the ‘how.'”

There was also feuding within J-PAC. There have been dozens of complaints about management and a hostile work environment – and employees who left with cash settlements.

With the struggle to make more identifications, Mark Leney, a former J-PAC anthropologist, said it’s hard to discern what “are technical difficulties of a unique mission to execute and what are ordinary issues of poor management.”

The Pentagon’s inspector general is investigating problems with the MIA effort, an inquiry that, according to several people who have been interviewed for it, is expected to address management and leadership issues.

The new agency will also face questions about mission priorities.

The Pentagon has long focused its recovery efforts on troops missing from the Vietnam War, a decision that experts say might not be the best use of its resources now. In fiscal year 2013, for example, J-PAC spent 65 percent of its field mission budget in Southeast Asia, but identified just nine Vietnam veterans.

In part, this is because the soil in Southeast Asia is so acidic it eats away at bones, essentially dissolving them. Several current and former J-PAC scientists have said that time might have run out there – there just may not be bones left to find.

Still, it remains politically delicate to cross advocates for Vietnam vets, some of whom have accused the government of covering up the existence of live POWs.

Mills-Griffiths, the most prominent and well-connected advocate for those missing from Vietnam, has long pushed to keep Vietnam at the forefront of MIA recovery efforts. Hagel personally thanked her at his press conference announcing the reorganization, and many of its features were recommended by her.

In a memo to Hagel, Mills-Griffiths blamed J-PAC’s decision to not increase field operations in Vietnam in part on a “misplaced focus by some on remains recoveries related to WWII as a means of increasing the number of IDs.”

Lisa Phillips, founder of WWII Families for the Return of the Missing, said, “We want exactly as Congress mandated. The fullest possible accounting of all POW MIA services members, regardless of the circumstances of the loss.”

Mills-Griffiths, whose brother is among the missing from Vietnam, has said the MIA effort was started for Vietnam vets, so families from other wars need “to stand in line“2013 raising the ire of advocates for World War II and Korean War veterans. But she has also said it isn’t a competition. Efforts on behalf of one war’s veterans shouldn’t be at the expense of others, she said.

Some families of troops missing in Southeast Asia have fought the disinterment of almost 10,000 troops buried as unknown casualties of the Korean War and World War II. That discord led to a 2009 DPMO memo saying that exhuming the graves of unknowns and using DNA to try to identify them should take a back seat to finding remains of service members still lost on the battlefield.

Lumpkin said the new agency would pursue more disinterments, but didn’t provide any details. J-PAC currently only exhumes remains in about 4 percent of the cases in which such a step is recommended. The average disinterment costs about $1,000 – significantly less than field operations.

Some families of missing troops from World War II and their advocates are hoping they will benefit from the move to embrace public-private partnerships, which could free their loved ones’ cases from the government’s grasp and allow them to move forward faster.