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Cultural Cook-Up

Jamaican cooking in Westbury

Bringing the rich vibrant culture of Jamaica to American audiences is a goal of Westbury businessman Patrick Payne. To that end, Payne, who is also an adjunct professor and philanthropist, is offering The Jamaican Christmas Special on Saturday, Dec. 19, an all-day event to be held at Westbury High School. The program begins at noon with a traditional Jamaican gift and cultural expo and a Jamaican holiday cooking workshop, culminating in a concert at 7 p.m.

To learn more about this event and the cuisine of Jamaica, I visited Payne at the Westbury home where he and his family have lived for 13 years. His neighbor, Daphney Maylor, a retired pediatrician who has lived in Westbury for 38 years, joined us. [Read more…]

Espoir’s Got Talent

Espoir Youth Program Inc., had their yearly fall talent show at the “Yes We Can” Community Center on Nov. 12. More than 60 people from the community attended to see the talented students read poetry, play musical instruments and perform dance numbers. [Read more…]

Christmas Carol Comes To CP

The holiday spirit came early to Carle Place, as the high school theater department put on their fall production of A Christmas Carol this past weekend.

Auditorium renovations at the high school caused this year’s fall production to be moved a couple of blocks away to the Rushmore Avenue stage. Moving to a much smaller venue posed several challenges for the theater department. [Read more…]

Expanding The Long Island Palate

Hometown chef finds success at City Cellar

Everyone has their comfort foods, be it steak and potatoes, a hearty pasta dish or a classic cheeseburger with a generous side of fries.

But sometimes, even these staple dishes can become a bit stale. At City Cellar in Westbury however, guests can enjoy a gourmet take on their favorite foods thanks to the creative culinary leadership of Mike Abbatiello.

As City Cellar’s executive chef, Abbatiello puts a global twist on American cuisine, making the high-end restaurant’s menu unlike anything you’ll find on Long Island. Abbatiello strives to help people expand their palates by pairing unusual foods together, or cooking traditional meals in an untraditional way. [Read more…]

A Different Kind Of Doctor’s Office

Dr. Betty Luna has known that she wanted to be a pediatrician since she was 15 years old. Now, she’s opening up her own practice within the very heart of her hometown of Westbury.

“My brothers always had chronic illnesses, and traveling back and forth to the hospital with them I would constantly see the whole process and I would always think about how I would make it better,” she said. “I think with kids you have a blank slate…you can do so much in terms of preventative care to make sure they grow up healthy, and that’s what made me interested in getting into the field of pediatrics.” [Read more…]

Locals Take On Novel Writing Challenge

November is marked by many things—Thanksgiving, Veterans Day, Black Friday. But for more than 3,700 people in Nassau County, this November is known for something else—National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo).

NaNoWriMo challenges aspiring writers to write a novel of at least 50,000 words in 30 days. Structured like a competition, NaNoWriMo doesn’t offer a grand prize, however those who stick with it do get the satisfaction of saying they’ve written a novel. [Read more…]

Books About The Arts Come Alive

By Cathleen Towey Merenda 

There has recently been an uptick in publishing of illustrated art books and fiction with an art theme. The Westbury Library has been adding well-written and beautiful volumes to our collection. The community has also expressed their commitment the arts with the inauguration of the Greater Westbury Council for the Arts. The titles here are a sample of the quality books that have become available at the library in 2015.

Florence: The Paintings & Frescoes, 1250-1743 by Ross King and Anja Grebe (Black Dog & Leventhal, 2015). This sumptuous volume includes almost 2,000 works from the Pitti Palace, Accademia, the Duomo and 28 other churches and museums in Florence. It’s simply gorgeous and will be enjoyed by art lovers who have visited Florence and by those who dream of going someday. [Read more…]

Country Comes To The City

When you think country musician, a city lawyer that was born in Brooklyn probably isn’t the first thing that comes to mind. However, Sondra Toscano is breaking those stereotypes, as she represents the changing face of country music.

The Carle Place resident recently released her debut country music EP, City Zipcode, Country Heart, a collection of five songs that she hopes has a positive impact on people. [Read more…]

Singas Aces DA Election

It was one of the most closely watched races in Nassau County but at the end, Acting District Attorney Madeline Singas dominated Republican challenger Kate Murray in the highly contested battle for district attorney.

Though polls showed the candidates were neck and neck in the days leading up to Election Day, when Nov. 3 came, Democratic nominee Singas had a steady lead throughout the night, garnering close to 58 percent of the vote with Murray taking in 42 percent. [Read more…]

Mixed Feelings At Forum

Tensions, emotions run high as Westbury presents bond details

The first community forum to discuss the Westbury School District’s proposed $172.6 million bond ended on a contentious note, as the meeting gave way to bickering and escalated tensions.

A presentation of the bond details on Nov. 7 was followed by an impassioned public comment portion, with people speaking fervently both in favor and against the bond. The meeting ended shortly after an argument erupted between school board president, Pless Dickerson, and a community member in the audience in regards to a speaker’s comments. [Read more…]