Saltaire Summery

by Hugh O'Brien |

The Jogathon begins. Softball playoffs and basketball tournament this weekend. (Photo by Catherine O’Brien.)

There everyone was, enjoying the 90-degree heat and 90-percent humidity early Thursday evening, when suddenly we’re hit by 60 MPH winds, torrential rains, and topping it off, a blackout that lingered till Friday on West and Surf walks … only days after a burst main forced the Village to shut off water to the west side of town for several hours (a complex fix handled expertly by the guys). And here I thought Saltaire’s water mains only burst on the east side of town. The power outage even short-circuited the Thursday night movie, interrupting our end-of-the-world film festival, though admittedly the timing was uncanny. Kinda significant, I’d say.

Anyway, Thursday’s events, combined with the sky’s first autumnal hue [sic], are sure signs that the end, of summer at any rate, is upon us; which in turn means it’s time to note the usual straggle of fall events. In pecking order….

SVFC Pancake Breakfast, Sunday, Sept. 1, 8 to 11 a.m. The P.O. shuts Sept. 4; Mondays-only refuse collection resumes Sept. 9 (remember Saltaire’s red flag initiative). Doctor Bob’s on call till Sept. 15; lifeguards weekends through Sept. 29. SCA Fall Festival, Saturday, Oct. 12, 11:30 a.m. – Halloween costumes, goodies, maybe mazes, the gamut. The Market’s open (with reduced days and hours) through Oct. 14; likewise the Yacht Club, weekends only. Keep an eye out for email updates with any changes. The Library is closed – please return all books. Camp is over – please return all kids. But the Village Office, Maintenance, Public Safety, the Fire Company, your faithful servants on the Board of Trustees, remain on duty, digging through everything from snow to paperwork to keep the place humming all winter long.

One trusted staffer who’ll be leaving our employ this September is none other than Georgine Posillico, without whom we’d never know what Mario’s last name is. Georgine has worked immeasurably and intensely hard for many years to help insure your needs are met, your questions answered and your Village run as well as it should be. Ever cheerful, resourceful and imaginative, always willing to take on extra tasks, Georgine is a dedicated, hard-working
Saltairian of many hats. Luckily the office will have an able replacement in Meagan Leppicello, whom you’ll all get to know in the coming months. Good luck Meagan, and thank you, Georgine.

Our overdue testimonial to Bob Furey was a huge success, with a large turnout of citizens thanking Bob for his years of service and, even more important, friendship. Bob was inundated with plaques but spent so much time accepting congratulations and posing for photos that he never did get anything to eat; fortunately SYC manager Dennis Sommelo wangled a plate of chef Patrick Zappia’s salmon so Bob could grab a quiet little repast afterward. The last bite of brunch has been wolfed down, but the love and affection for Bob won’t disappear so easily. The Doc says he’ll see us later, to which we reply, cribbing his favorite parting quip, “Thanks for the warning!”

Report on the annual soccer tournament, from the guy whose name is on the trophy: “Another successful Perlberger Cup, thanks to Keith Miller, Don Taffner, and 66 high-level players. Most players ever. Weather, and the field’s condition, were great – thanks Vern. After a slow start on Saturday, Orange regrouped and reached the finals on Sunday, but Grey prevailed in a hard-fought match. The J.D. Butler Memorial Sportsmanship Trophy was awarded to those five wonderful Orange teenage girls. MVP went to Jack Shire, goalkeeper for Grey. This tournament is a family activity. We value fun and sportsmanship above all, although the quality of play was once again astounding. Onwards to the 22nd Cup.”

I didn’t realize Vern Henriksen was responsible for the weather as well as the field’s condition (though he seems to do everything else), or that Ralph uses the British spelling of ‘Grey,” but, earl’s well that ends well, I suppose.

The last couple of years we’ve waited until the final column to note those Saltairians, past and recent,
who’ve passed away since last summer; a chance to remember them as summer draws to its close. Time and space constraints prevent us from giving them the due each deserves, but simply recalling
their names may bring back a few choice memories, evoke a smile or two, and help insure they’ll never be forgotten. So, with fond affection and even fonder regard, we remember…George Mihaly…Harry Baker… Deborah Smith…David Watts…Bob Conlan… Lenore Silver…J.D. Butler….Liz Ehrlich…and David Broadhead. Each brought something unique and inimitable to our lives; they left our village a better place, and for those who knew them, made us better people. Rest in peace, good and gentle friends.

When you return next spring you’ll have a finished wooden Lighthouse Prom, a new building at 14 Bay, improved civic services, even modern conveniences like water and electricity, at the ready. Hope you enjoy them, and should we indeed be swept aside in the looming reeducation drive, think of us warmly with, appropriately (for the one and only time in history), 2020 hindsight.

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Hugh O'Brien

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