Aquebogue-Jamesport: Horticulture to save The Grange

02/01/2011 7:58 AM |

BARBARAELLEN KOCH PHOTO | Warren McKnight of Riverhead performs 'Old Joe Clark,' a song dating to 1812, as Jeff Frank of Hampton Bays sings along Friday night at the Grange Hall in Northville. Mr. Frank, founder of the Nature Lyceum, kicked off the 'Save the Grange' lecture series Friday night with a talk on 'Metaphysics and Organic Horticulture.' All lecture series donations will go to a fund for repairs to the 179-year-old building.

My good neighbor Bill Van Helmond called me and asked me to include the following announcement for his mom, who will be celebrating her birthday on Feb. 9. Best wishes for a happy birthday to Carolyn Van Helmond, with love from your son, Bill, and friends, Linda, Scott, Gino and Lisa. Thanks again for the news, Bill, and happy birthday, Carolyn.

My husband and I went to the first talk in the horticulture series at The Grange in Northville. It was given by Jeff Frank, instructor and founder of The Nature Lyceum. The turnout was a success. All the proceeds from the evening went to the “Save the Grange” fund.

Beginning this week, “Organic Horticulture Made Simple: For Beginners and Established Gardeners” will be offered as part of this series to save The Grange. This week’s lectures are as follows: Wednesday, Feb. 2, “Organics in the Garden,” given by Florence Rewinski; Friday, Feb. 4, “How to Create a Farm, Raising Food and Preservation,” given by Thea Fry; Wednesday, Feb. 9, “Native Habitat Landscaping” given by Suzanne Ruggles. For more information about the series or The Grange, visit

I must confess — I love chocolate! That is why I think that Our Redeemer Lutheran School has come up with a great idea for their Valentine’s Day school fundraiser. You can order a box (or two or three, etc.) of chocolate-covered strawberries for your sweetheart for Valentine’s Day. Sweethearts are not just those with whom we are romantically involved. Moms have sweet hearts, so do kids and grandparents and friends and neighbors. So support a neighborhood school and purchase a box of chocolate-covered strawberries. Each one-dozen box costs $20. The boxes need to be picked up on Monday, Feb. 14, from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Our Redeemer Lutheran School, 269 Main Road, Aquebogue. For more information or to place your order, call 722-4000, ext. 10, Monday through Friday, from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. Checks should be made payable to Our Redeemer Lutheran School.
Speaking of sweet, Winterfest Jazz on the Vine begins Valentine’s Day weekend. Plan ahead to participate and support our local wine industry and artists from all over Long Island by visiting for schedules and information on this great, local five-week event.

I speak with my mom, who resides in Florida, every weekend. This weekend, she insisted I must be sick of all the snow. I assured her that as long as there is winter, I would rather have snow. I love the white blanket covering the fields and trees and I love the silence of the snow. I love that the snow slows life down because “I have promises to keep and miles to go before I sleep” (“Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening” by Robert Frost).

Have a beautiful week!



100 Comment

  • Now there’s a big surprise Linda Ortiz and Julie Lane in cahoots ?

  • And that was only one week and a 1,000 was missing imagine how much actually was “put in her pocket”? The woman who ran the Trailer Park went to jail for stealing from the church and guess who’s friend she was and I believe got her the job at McCann…..ok, ok , I’ll ya a hint LO, yes sir Linda Ortiz.

  • In the spirit of disclosure and transparency at work sessions I would have thought the results of the states audit of the rec dept.would have been discussed, when the board was questioned by a resident about the content, he was told “it would be available at Village Hall the next day and he should just get it there”.
    Also, as to the audit, why did the Suffolk Times edit this article after it was posted online? To remove a quote that perhaps is unflattering or embarrassing, to the current administration seems a little like journalistic bias, if the Mayor was misquoted maybe the reporter should have mentioned that instead of deleting it. To filter news because of friendship or partisan leaning is just not fair to readers.

  • If ever there was a need for an investigation it would be now. Especially with the connection with the Parish Out Reach thief, isn’t she now running CAST? I think there are enough “coincidences” to warrant looking into!

  • There was system in place when Nyce took office. Her name was Marge Stevens and her job was handling and safe guarding all the cash brought in. She balanced the cash registers for all village recreation and marina entities. She made professional timely deposits in the bank and no one ever put a penny in their pocket while she was in charge! She was fired because Nyce thought she didn’t do anything important and she wasn’t worth the cost of the health insurance and most important his pal, the rec director, didn’t like her!

  • tsk tsk Linda Ortiz. Hope you’re not planning to steal from the poor now that you are the new CAST director. You know what happened to the LAST person in Greenport who did that. She’s still serving time.

  • Don’t forget to look at Abatelli too.

  • Someone needs to look closely at how Ortiz bartered with Spanish families who couldn’t pay for the camp or after school program. When the could pay it was always in cash and when they couldn’t, they paid in services…like maybe painting her house? It’s easy to figure out there must be records of how many kids we’re registered and multiply by amount charged and how much was put in bank….I bet there will be money missing…

  • Linda is now doing the same thing at CAST. I hear one of Linda’s new CAST programs is a “salon” in the evening, where a Latino woman gives “free” makeovers in leiu of a donation to CAST. To me it’s no different than slavery. Linda makes the Latino population feel like illegal immigrants; the exact stigma they are trying to escape. At least pay the damn woman for her services.

  • if you printed the headlines in something larger than 64 font you could make this a bigger deal than it is.

  • Do you honestly believe the State of NY’s auditor is a party to Village of Greenport politics? Or perhaps you believe the misappropriation, misplacing, stealing, not accounting for, (or any other phrase) of a potentially large amount of village funds is not really a big deal. “Weasel Story”, “Bigger deal than it really is” I guess we know what side of the fence you’re on with this story.

  • The comments here are pretty amazing. Under normal circumstances any number of people could find their way into the civil courtroom for slander and libel. Just saying.

  • I agree with SOME of what you say – but a person can volunteer and make a contribution of services, which is apparently the situation here. ie., 2 people taught computer classes for nothing – that was not looked at as slavery

  • I agree with SOME of what you say – but a person can volunteer and make a contribution of services, which is apparently the situation here. ie., 2 people taught computer classes for nothing – that was not looked at as slavery

  • there is nothing lawsuit worthy here – simply opinions

  • Sticky Fingers aka Ortiz couldn’t get away with it when there was someone watching her and counting the money EVERYDAY! It was only after Ninny Nyce fired Mrs Stevens who counted and proved every penny in the registers because he didn’t know what she did!
    DUH, now ya know mo! Your campaign manager was taking the dough home!

  • This is a BIG DEAL! Where is the money? If she didn’t “misplace or borrow” it…..what she made 1,000 dollars worth of mistakes every three weeks? Come on no one is that dumb!

  • I think this has to be the final nail in Cast’s coffin. Who in their right mind is going to give money to them knowing the director couldn’t balance the cash registers at the rink, a job commonly done by young adults. I’s not my place to say where that money went but she should have had control of the cash and NO money should have ever gone missing!

  • FYI…get your facts correct before spouting off. The vast majority of employees (ALL SECRETARIES, GROUNDS WORKERS, CUSTODIANS, AIDS & TEACHERS) pay towards their insurance premiums, between 15-20%. The majority also pay into their retirement, although some do not due to vested rules as negotiated through NYS…not MPUFSD. If you want to attack ADMINISTRATION for not paying, that is fine…but don’t lump it all as one when it is not. Focus on the real issues of how we can best provide for our children…even if it means tightening our belts a little more and foregoing that morning coffee a couple of times a week…which is what this adds up to.

  • Many teachers do pay 15% towards their medical already and 10% of their salary for 10 years into their retirement. The Teachers Pension System is 75% self supporting (through current teacher contributions and the return on investment). To attack teachers with this nasty resentment is wrong. It is an extremely demanding job that is totally not understood by people who don’t teach. With that said, in these hard times, teachers do need to take wage freezes….not because they don’t deserve raises, but because the money is simply not there. Teachers are very deserving and when things turn around, we need to remember to take care of the educators. As far as $1 million library…ridiculous.

  • Correction- it is a 3% contribution for 10 years into the retirement system.