Suffolk County’s visionary farmland preservation program has just achieved a triumph. The state’s Appellate Division last month rejected a ruling by a state Supreme Court justice in 2016 that hamstrung the program. Conceived by County Executive John Klein, the program, begun in 1974, is based on the brilliant and then novel idea of purchasing development rights. Farmers are paid the difference between the value of their land in agriculture and what they could get for it if they sold it to a developer. In return, the land is kept in agriculture in perpetuity. READ
A framed Newsday obituary for George Wybenga, a painter and longtime educator, hangs in the hallway at the Stony Brook University Hospital Blood Bank. The 2016 article details his journey to the United States as an immigrant during World War II and the paintings he created as an artist until he died at 79. READ
Recent news that the remains of Louise Pietrewicz were found in grave six feet beneath the basement in the house that once belonged to her married boyfriend, William Boken, rocked this small town — and beyond. Finally, it was the answer to a 51-year-old mystery. READ
Back in 2009 I wrote a piece for this column about our Lenten ecumenical activities that was entitled “Praying Together and Where It May Lead.” READ
About two hours into the March for Our Lives, I experienced multiple epiphanies. In no order of importance these were as follows: that there is a difference between a march and a rally, and what I was part of was actually a rally. I thought I was attending a march and had prepared to walk for miles, if necessary. I didn’t know that I was going to stand, with as little personal space as revelers in Times Square on New Year’s Eve, without the accompanying stimulants, for more than three and a half hours, listening to the heartfelt expressions of sorrow and hope, the voices of young people, amplified from a far-away stage. READ
As I watch my community stagger and reel from the blow we have been dealt, I have thought almost constantly, “What can be done?” The sinking feeling, the nagging thought that creeps in is: “Nothing.” READ
There’s not much Lucie, an 8-year-old chocolate Labrador, can’t do. Except play fetch. Glaucoma claimed her vision in both eyes within three years. She still gets around just fine. She even enjoys swimming.
“Sometimes I kind of forget that she’s blind,” said Charles Turner, Lucie’s owner. READ
Re: the North Fork History Project – When the English arrive, Indians disperse
While this installment contains much interesting historical info, the takeaway boils down to the typical progressive maligning of American history. READ
For many years afterward, it would be one of my favorite gambits at cocktail parties and other venues of idle gossip.
Whenever the conversation drifted into the area of misspent youth or military service or rock ‘n’ roll or adventures in Europe, I would mention that while serving a two-year hitch in the U.S. Army, I was stationed with Elvis Presley. It was a boast that delivered real cachet and, as Henry Kissinger liked to say, had the further virtue of being the truth. READ
I am not qualified to describe the characteristics of weapons. I have no background in weaponry. When average people like me comment about gun laws the gun lobby (and my congressman, Lee Zeldin) quickly use semantics to, in their opinion, disqualify me. READ