National Hispanic Recognition Winners

Three South High seniors have been named Scholars in the 2011&endash;12 National Hispanic Recognition Program (NHRP) sponsored by the College Board. They are among some 5,000 students nationwide, from over 124,000 high school juniors who took the qualifying 2010 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test and designated themselves as Hispanic, to be recognized by NHRP as either Scholars or Honorable Mention Finalists. Winners are recognized based on their test scores. In addition, Scholars must have a grade point average of 3.5 or higher; Honorable Mentions, a GPA of 3.0&endash;3.49. NHRP, established in 1983, provides recognition of the exceptional academic achievements of Hispanic/Latino high school seniors and identifies them to subscribing four-year postsecondary institutions.


Piano Showcase Performers

Two outstanding pianists have been selected to perform at the sixth annual Piano Showcase at the New York State School Music Association (NYSSMA) Conference. One is a South High School junior, the other, a fourth-grader at the Kennedy School. The Piano Showcase will take place in Rochester, in early December. Only 12 students statewide, from 52 applicants, were selected for this prestigious honor, and two come from the Great Neck Public Schools. The South High student will be performing Beethoven's "Sonata in C Minor, Op. 13, No. 8, movement 1." He also plays the clarinet in South's Chamber Orchestra. He is a student of Michael Schwartz, performing arts department head. The Kennedy pianist is the youngest student selected for the Piano Showcase. He received a perfect 100 score at his evaluation. Maxim will play Chopin's "Fantasie Impromptu" at the Showcase. His music teacher at Kennedy is Amy Kempton.


Adult Program Open House for the Arts: Sun., Nov. 6

The Great Neck Public Schools Adult Program invites all residents to attend its Open House for the Arts on Sunday, Nov. 6, from 1-5 p.m., at the Cumberland Adult Center, 30 Cumberland Ave., Lake Success. This free afternoon will offer music, entertainment, and refreshments, but the focus will be on the "Arts"--computer arts, craft arts, culinary arts, fine arts, fitness arts, literary arts, performing arts, and the art of the game, all highlighting the Adult Program's varied course offerings. The Open House will also honor Ronna Telsey, who retired in August as director of public information and adult education, after serving the district for 32 years, and will celebrate the Great Neck Public Schools Adult Program's 110 years of commitment to adult education. Ms. Telsey continues to lead the Adult Program as a part-time consultant. The day's festivities will begin at 1 p.m. During the afternoon, see artists at work, attend musical performances, peruse exhibitions of faculty and student work, and view demonstrations, including painting, drawing, sculpture, pottery, jewelry making, and crafts. Attendees will receive a discount coupon towards future course registration. There will also be a drawing for a free Adult Program course, plus giveaways. An arts and crafts sale will provide the perfect opportunity to purchase one-of-a-kind gifts by Adult Program students and faculty, in time for the holidays. Mark your calendar and plan to stop by on Nov. 6 to experience this vital arts event at the Adult Program and to congratulate Ronna Telsey. Free parking on site. For more information, please call the Adult Program at 441-4949.


Tastes, Tours, & History: Adult Program Special Events & Trips

Join the Great Neck Public Schools Adult Program for special events and trips scheduled this Fall: learn about Persian cuisine in Great Neck; explore Brooklyn two ways--delve into the borough's history and experience Brooklyn with an Italian accent; and visit NYC's newest attraction for food lovers, the Eataly Italian marketplace. All trips depart from the Cumberland Adult Center, 30 Cumberland Ave., unless otherwise noted. Details are provided below. To register, please call the Adult Program at (516) 441-4949 or go to for online registration and the entire current catalog.

Persia in Great Neck: Market Tour, Tastes & Dinner--Nov. 16

Enjoy an aromatic and delicious taste of Persia in Great Neck. Meet at the A to Z Market on Middle Neck Road for a tour and tasting of their exotic foods and learn about the ingredients common to Persian cuisine. You'll have a chance to sample dried fruits, nuts, spices, and more. Then, gather at the new Bijan Restaurant, a few blocks north, for an excellent, glatt kosher, Persian dinner. Begin with an appetizer array of dolmeh (sweet grape leaves stuffed with ground beef and basmati rice) served hot, hummus (crushed chickpeas, tahini, lemon, and fresh garlic), Turkish salad (diced tomatoes, red peppers, onions, parsley, and celery), and olvich salad (a traditional Persian potato salad with chicken, eggs, peas, and pickles). Our entrées will be chelo kabab boneless joujeh (marinated boneless chicken), kebab koobideh (Persian seasoned ground beef), kabab brag (marinated cubes of prime beef), and ghormeh sabzi (fresh herb stew with limes, kidney beans, and beef). Persians are masters of rice cookery and our entrées will be served with three kinds of rice--fresh dill and lima-bean rice with grilled plum tomatoes and vegetables, orange rice, and basmati rice. Dessert will include baklava or cream roll, tea, and soft drinks. As a treat, there'll be a live presentation of Persian songs. This event, led by Carol Brock, takes place on Wednesday, Nov. 16, at 6 p.m. Pre-registration is required. Meet at A to Z Market for tour and tasting, 703 Middle Neck Rd., Great Neck, (516) 829-3525, followed by dinner at Bijan, 218 Middle Neck Rd., Great Neck, (516) 472-7333. Fee: $49 (includes tour, tasting, dinner, and gratuity).

Brooklyn History & Junior's Restaurant--Nov. 10

Visit the Dutch-built Vander Ende-Onderdonk House (1709), the oldest stone house in NYC, the second oldest residence in Queens County, and a NYC Historic Landmark. The House occupies the original site of an extensive farming community developed by the Dutch in 1600. The Onderdonk House is a museum for the permanent exhibit on the archaeology of the site and two rooms represent the longest periods of owner occupancy. Enjoy an in-costume, docent-led tour through the House and grounds and a discussion of its local history. The outside area is a large, sloping lawn with good views of the Manhattan skyline. The visit includes an interactive lecture on colonial and 19th-century living, a slide presentation on local history, and a chance to make a simple colonial craft, if desired. You'll have time to visit the unusual gift shop, where you can pick up a trinket for a grandchild or other child in your life. Then, off to Junior's, Brooklyn's iconic restaurant, known as the home of New York's best cheesecake. Entrée choices are: fried or broiled cod, roast spring chicken, or brisket of beef--served with potato and vegetable; cheesecake, fruit pie, or ice cream; coffee, tea, or soda. Please indicate entrée choice when you register. Move on to the Brooklyn Historical Society in Brooklyn Heights. Our docent will walk us through the special exhibits on display. The exhibits provide a historical overview of Brooklyn, through artifacts, documents, and photos, including Native Americans, the colonial period, the Revolution, Abolitionism, the Civil War, and beyond. Our docent then takes us into the Othmer Library to explore the architecture and history of this 130-year-old building. Atlases from the 1880s are fascinating; they show, for any Brooklyn location, exactly what the "lay of the land" was at that time, including names and types of buildings on site. Those with Brooklyn roots will find these of special interest. Len Magnus leads this trip on Thursday, Nov. 10. Depart 9 a.m.; anticipated return 5 p.m. Fee: $85 (includes admissions, docent-led tours, lunch and gratuity, transportation and gratuity to driver).

A Taste of Italy in Brooklyn--Nov. 29

If you love all things Italian, particularly Italian food, join us for this fun-filled day in Brooklyn. Our first stop is a legendary Italian specialty store, D. Coluccio & Sons. Here you will learn about artisanal products, sample various cheeses, and take home a complimentary gift. Then, it's off to the Villabate Italian Pastry Shop in the heart of Bensonhurst. Once you step inside, you will be overwhelmed by the incredible artistry and authenticity of everything in the store. It's so inviting that we guarantee you won't leave without a package! To complete our Italian experience, enjoy a delicious lunch at Il Colosseo, a typical Sicilian restaurant, also in Bensonhurst. The meal will include a choice of appetizer (salad, fresh mozzarella and tomato, grilled vegetables, or minestrone soup); choice of entrée (filet of sole machiato sautéed with fresh tomato, garlic, and oil; grilled chicken topped with chopped fresh tomato; baked ziti; mushroom risotto; or fusilli with swordfish sauce and eggplant); coffee, tea, or espresso; dessert; and one glass of wine or soda. Please indicate your appetizer and entrée choices when registering. (If we're lucky, we will be joined by a surprise guest.) Cathy Coluccio Fazzolari leads this culinary trip on Tuesday, Nov. 29. Depart 10 a.m.; anticipated return 4 p.m. Fee: $79 (includes lunch and gratuity, and transportation and gratuity to driver).

Eataly Tour--Dec. 6

Lidia and Joe Bastianich's and Mario Batali's Eataly is a "must see." New York's new best tourist attraction is much more than a marketplace with restaurants. Eataly is a chance to taste and take home the wares of artisans--bread, pasta, cheese, wine, pastries, and much more! Here, under one roof, are Italian products from every region of Italy. Our 10 a.m. arrival, which is Eataly's opening time, will avoid the crowds. Gather in La Scuola (the cooking school where Lidia is the "Dean") for coffee/juice/brioche (Italian breakfast pastries). An Eataly Partner or its Guest Relations Director will speak to us about Eataly (explain its history, mission, and, most importantly, how to navigate the market). We'll be provided with some written info on the market, along with a map. Then, each of us will be presented with an Eataly tote, ideal for transporting any purchases. You are free to wander, shop, have lunch, etc. The restaurants are: La Piazza--a stand-up food-and-drinks bar serving tastings of salami, cheeses, mozzarella, raw bar, wines, and beers; Il Pesce--a seated counter/table area that serves raw bar, plus Italian seafood, in antipasto and entrée portions; Le Verdure--seated counter/table area that serves Italian-style vegetarian dishes; La Pizza and La Pasta--two seated counters and a table area that serves pastas and 10" pizza pies; and Manzo--a more formal dining experience. These restaurants will seat up to six guests together--put you names on a "first come, first served" list and you will be assisted. You can spend more time in the market, dine on your own, or nosh on your own at one or more of the cafes: Eataly's Dolci, Lavazza Caffé, Caffé Vergnano, Pasticceria, Gelateria, and Venchi Cioccolato.

Browse, shop, and eat until 2 p.m. when our bus heads back to Great Neck. Carol Brock leads this trip on Tuesday, Dec. 6. Depart 8:45 a.m.; anticipated return 3 p.m. Fee: $79 (includes refreshments at La Scuola, tote bag, transportation, and gratuity to driver).