05/10/15 8:00am
05/10/2015 8:00 AM

Although Mother Nature doesn’t want to let go of winter, we are busy, like other boaters, prepping our vessel for the upcoming season. We were very lucky to have found our home on the beautiful Peconic River. It’s the perfect spot for us. We can fi sh the river and head out to the bays and beyond, enjoying Long Island’s waterways.

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05/09/15 8:00am
05/09/2015 8:00 AM
NYIT Vocational Independence Program students watch as their dean, Ernst VanBergeijk, scales a rock wall at the Baiting Hollow Scout Camp Friday. (Credit: Michael White)

NYIT Vocational Independence Program students watch as their dean, Ernst VanBergeijk, scales a rock wall at the Baiting Hollow Scout Camp Friday. (Credit: Michael White)

The students enrolled in the Vocational Independence Program at Central Islip’s New York Institute of Technology seem to adore their dean, Ernst VanBergeijk.

All of the three dozen-plus college-age kids have learning disabilities and/or autism spectrum diagnoses, and this past school year, they showed their respect for “Dean Ernst,” as they call him, by rising once again to his annual fitness challenge.  (more…)

05/03/15 8:00am
05/03/2015 8:00 AM

They make the sound that still tears at my soul. They bring me the promise of peace and they Pavlovianly ready me for violence. It’s the same sound — the sound of a chopper.

In my generation, it was the distinctive clop-clop-clop of a Bell UH-1 Iroquois — the famed Huey. But there are other helicopters that bring the same feelings to generations of warriors.  (more…)

05/02/15 10:00am
05/02/2015 10:00 AM
Hudson, a 12-year-old dachshund, died last April. (Credit: Charity Robey)

Hudson, a 12-year-old dachshund, died last April. (Credit: Charity Robey)

Last April, our beloved dachshund, Hudson, died. He was 12, which is pretty old in dog years, as they say.

My husband suggested we wait a year before we started sniffing around for a new dog, “out of respect.” I thought this was a strange idea, but now that a year has passed, I can see some good has come of waiting. No good for Hudson alas, but waiting has helped me understand what that long, black dog meant to me.  (more…)

04/26/15 10:00am
04/26/2015 10:00 AM

As a young scientist, I trained as a post-doctoral fellow with the Tulane University School of Public Health and Tropical Medicine. Long before Babesia became part of our local lexicon, I was searching for this and other causes of zoonotic diseases (i.e., those transmissible from animals to man) in the jungles and rural areas of Colombia. I therefore have a particular appreciation for the dangers posed by the current prevalence of ticks and tick-borne diseases on Long Island.  (more…)

04/24/15 8:00am
04/24/2015 8:00 AM

HomePlats

Saturday’s opening day ceremony will be Tony Sammartano’s last as Riverhead Little League president. After about 15 years at the helm, organizing an activity that hundreds and hundreds of kids have had the opportunity to enjoy, it’s time for him to move on to greener pastures.

Problem is, it’s not exactly clear who, if anyone, is going to run the league after Tony and his wife, Jennifer — another of the league’s five board members — step down. (more…)

04/21/15 12:00pm

A mere four years ago, and for decades prior, one could not find any substantial evidence of students opting-out of standardized testing. At first glance, the current, heated, conflict over state testing and the “opt-out” movement appears to be a dispute between those who believe in and those who dispute the value of state tests. But this conflict goes deeper. It is a conflict about what is good for children and adolescents, about how children learn and thrive, and about how to raise young people to enter into and contribute to their communities as mature members of a democratic society.  (more…)