Category Archives: Harrison Happenings

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Column: Honoring Sgt. Lemm and My Community Alert

As many of you know, our community suffered a loss with the tragic death of West Harrison resident Staff Sgt. Joseph Lemm, who was recently killed by a suicide bomber in Afghanistan. Sgt. Lemm was cherished by his family and was greatly admired by our community. Through these dark days, I have been deeply moved by the outpouring of love, friendship and faith I’ve witnessed, especially by our residents. I hope that this show of support will encourage those who knew and loved Sgt. Lemm to draw strength from the sense of community we have in Harrison. Thank you to those involved in honoring his memory. I hope we can all find solace in celebrating Sgt. Lemm’s short but meaningful life and remembering better times.

I would like to extend my warmest wishes for a prosperous and healthy new year. I hope you and your family had a happy and festive holiday. I want to thank you for all your support over the last year. The town board has achieved incredible things so far, and I look forward to seeing what we can accomplish together in 2016.

As we begin the new year, I am happy to report that Harrison continues to build on the success of the last few years while keeping tax increases in check, sustaining a healthy reserve and maintaining all our basic municipal services. In addition to our improved bond rating from Moody’s, Harrison’s 2016 budget was adopted and remains under Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s mandated tax cap. Advancing this positive trend is a priority and I look forward to the challenges and opportunities in the year ahead.

I would like to bring your attention to My Community Alert. This valuable system allows Harrison police officers and other town officials to notify residents in the event of an ongoing emergency. Text messages and emails are sent to registered residents if the Harrison Police Department believes that the community should be informed of a local incident or event. Recently, our Police Department has sent out alerts pertaining to road closures and weather updates, and has warned our community that fraudulent phone solicitations had been reported in our area. Residents can register with My Community Alert at mycommunityalert.net. I encourage all to take advantage of this very useful tool.

Please be aware of the following sanitation notice: Christmas trees may be placed curbside for pickup through Sunday, Jan. 31. Please do not place trees in plastic bags. No holiday wreaths or roping will be collected. Visit harrison-ny.gov for more information.

The library is continuing to offer great programs. I encourage all interested movie buffs to attend our library’s Brown Bag Cinema. Enjoy the new large screen at the recently-renovated Halperin building of the Harrison Public Library. This event is free of charge and is held on one Thursday each month at 1 p.m. Bring your lunch, sit back and enjoy a screening of a film newly released on DVD. Upcoming films include “The Walk” on Jan. 21 and “The Intern” on Feb. 18. Refreshments are provided by The Friends of the Harrison Library.

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Column: Hanukkah and other season happenings

Recently, members of the Jewish community began the eight-day celebration of Hanukkah. This holiday pays tribute to the unbreakable spirit and fortitude of the Jewish people. The message of Hanukkah serves as a lesson to us all that, when we stand united, we can conquer any problem and overcome any setback. It is my hope that the Festival of Lights brings comfort and consolation to all and encourages not only our nation, but our cities, towns and villages to gather together and cherish the bonds of community. On behalf of the entire town board, I wish all Harrison residents and their families a very happy Hanukkah.

This year’s holiday celebration kickoffs were a huge success. From candy canes to carolers and Santa’s arrival, both West Harrison and downtown Harrison celebrated in style.

The cocoa flowed in West Harrison as Frosty the Snowman visited with residents, young and old. Choral groups entertained the crowds in downtown Harrison, culminating in the lighting of the Christmas tree and menorah. It was great to see so many familiar faces, as these events truly celebrate the season. Both events did a wonderful job reflecting the charm and magic that the holidays should bring to each of us.

On a related note, Harrison is a wonderful place to do your holiday shopping. Locally-owned shops and restaurants offer a warm and welcoming atmosphere and it’s a great spot to get together with neighbors and friends as you get ready for the season’s celebrations. While making your way through your shopping list, be sure to drop in to local establishments and join in the festive mood.

I am happy to report that recently, there were two promotions made within the Harrison Police Department. At the Dec. 7 swearing-in ceremony in Town Hall, police officer Salvatore Rigano was promoted to the rank of detective, and Detective William Curow was promoted to the rank of sergeant. I am completely confident that both Detective Rigano and Sgt. Curow will carry out their new duties in a professional manner and will continue to be an asset to the Town/Village of Harrison.

Harrison Town Clerk Jackie Greer would like to remind residents that she has extended office hours to coincide with the town/village board meetings. The hours are from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. All services are available. These hours are in addition to the after-hour service available during the Planning Board meetings on the third Tuesday of each month. For more information, please call the Town Clerk’s Office at 670-3030.

The next “Lunch with the Mayor” will be on Friday, Dec. 11 and I will be at Michelangelo’s Pizza, Pasta & Things, located at 208 Underhill Ave. in West Harrison. I will be meeting with representatives from the Harrison Youth Council, HYC. So if you have any questions for me or for the HYC, we will be at this location from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. On Friday, Dec. 18 I will be at Rattlesnake Jack’s, located at 110 Halstead Ave., from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. I look forward to talking about issues facing our community.

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Column: Spreading holiday cheer and reminders

I hope you all had a peaceful and joyous holiday weekend. Thanksgiving is a time to gather with family and friends to express gratitude for all that we treasure. I am especially grateful for the wonderful community we have in Harrison. As we gather this holiday season and reflect on the good tidings of the past year, I encourage you to celebrate the season of giving. State and local organizations will be increasing their efforts to assist food banks and soup kitchens. Donating food, stocking shelves and feeding those in need are meaningful ways to volunteer your time and celebrate the spirit of generosity. It’s an excellent opportunity to celebrate life’s good fortune and I urge all to take part. For more information on how you can get involved, please call our Community Services Department at 670-3025.

Several years ago, the Holiday Project was created in an effort to spread holiday cheer to families in need right here in Harrison. Currently, those in need encompass more than 350 individuals, ranging in age from infant to elderly. Through the generosity of merchants, and with monies collected, each sponsored family receives a “Holiday in a Basket” that includes a grocery gift card, clothing, a toy for each child, a small gift for the parents and a pizza gift certificate. If you are interested in sponsoring one or more families, please send a check payable to “The Holiday Project” for $150 per family to project coordinator Sara Pirrello at 40 Pleasant Ridge Road, Harrison, NY 10528. This is the perfect time of year to help our neighbors feel the joy of this year’s holiday season. If you would like to get involved in this year’s efforts, please contact Sara at sastort@aol.com.

In Harrison, leaf collection runs from mid-October through the beginning of December. Our Department of Public Works’ entire full-time highway staff and seasonal temporary employees perform this municipal service. The work detail is divided into several routes. Leaf crews remain on their route for the entire season, giving each resident numerous opportunities to take their leaves to the curb for removal. Crews usually take seven to 10 working days to complete one entire route before beginning again.

Each year, the weather pattern determines when the leaves fall, and some years, like this one, all of the leaves drop at the same time. This means that our crews take longer to remove the piles. Town personnel make every effort to remove the leaf piles as quickly as possible. To expedite the process, we ask that residents remove all rocks, bottles, branches and other debris, take leaves to the curb and avoid parking on or around the piles. It is also important that leaves are not placed in the storm drains or catch basins, as this may cause flooding. Our Department of Public Works is not able to indicate exactly when crews will be in a specific neighborhood or on a particular street, as those work details are contingent on the day-to-day progress of our highway department during the leaf removal season. That being said, all leaf piles must be curbside by Monday, Dec. 14, the first day of the year’s last leaf collection process. I appreciate your patience as we continue to clear our roadways.

The next “Lunch with the Mayor” is on Friday, Dec. 11. I will be at Michelangelo’s Pizza, Pasta & Things, located at 208 Underhill Ave. in West Harrison. I will be meeting with representatives from the Harrison Youth Council, HYC, so if you have any questions for me or for the HYC, we will be at this location from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. and look forward to talking about issues facing our community.

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Column: A board vacancy and holiday news

As a result of the recent local election, there will be a vacancy on the town board as of Jan. 1, 2016. The town board is required to fill this vacancy. If anyone is interested in being considered for this vacancy, they are urged to submit a letter of interest and a resume to: The Town Board, c/o Town of Harrison, Supervisor Ron Belmont, 1 Heineman Place, Harrison, NY 10528, or via email to rbelmont@harrison-ny.gov. Submissions must be received by Monday, Nov. 30.

I would like to take this time to recognize the Interfaith Congregational Laymen’s Committee, ICLC, of Harrison. Every year, the committee extends a townwide invitation to an important celebration. This year, the Jewish Community Center of Harrison hosted an assembly that underscores the theme “Praying for Greater Unity: Different Faith Traditions.” It was a wonderful event and provided an opportunity for all attendees to recognize the richness and value in each other’s faiths. The ICLC is an interfaith fellowship of lay representatives from local congregations. For more information on ICLC, please call Lola Geiger at 939-7066.

On a related note, last week, the Senior Citizen Thanksgiving luncheons were held in both downtown and West Harrison. More than 100 guests were served turkey, mashed potatoes, dressing, vegetables and several selections of delicious pies. Many of the guests have been enjoying this annual banquet for a number of years, and look forward to it with great anticipation. Thanks to the Recreation Department for organizing the event. This feast is truly one of the highlights of my holiday season and it was wonderful to be included.

Congratulations to Keio Academy on their recent 25th anniversary celebration. It was an honor to be included as members of the Keio community, their families and friends gathered together to recognize the school’s exceptional education, which has been provided to many students over the years. The school has always been a premier establishment in our area, adding to our town slogan, “Its Great to Live in Harrison.”

The holidays are a magical time with festive occasions and memorable traditions. This year, the Town/Village of Harrison is brightening the season with a fantastic holiday event. It’s a perfect way to share the excitement of the season with family and friends.

The Holiday Happening will kick off in Ma Riis Park (across from Town Hall) at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday, Dec. 5 with a host of fun activities for the kids. Star Kidz and our elementary school choral groups will be regaling visitors with holiday music and songs. Children will be able to write a letter to Santa, decorate their own ornament, play the dreidel game and enjoy hot chocolate and baked goods. Santa will be making a special appearance and will visit with children, young and old alike. This wonderful affair will culminate with a Christmas tree and menorah lighting in the park. So, embrace the holiday by bringing your kids, your cameras and your holiday spirit because the Holiday Happening is the must-attend event of the season. It’s open to all and is free of charge. Thank you to all who participated for their generosity and hard work.

Once again, we are very fortunate to have benefited from a generous organization in our community. Every year, St. Gregory’s distributes grocery bags to their parishioners to fill in support of the Harrison Food Pantry. Recently, the Harrison Food Pantry received hundreds of bags from the St. Gregory’s food drive. Anthony Marinaccio and our Department of Public Works personnel were a big help with picking up the donation from the church. The town depends entirely on these types of donations to support the Harrison Food Pantry. This example is just one of many that demonstrate the importance of community support. Thank you to Ron and Andrea Bakay and to the St. Gregory the Great parish for their continued support.

The next “Lunch with the Mayor” is on Friday, Dec. 11 and I will be at Michelangelo’s Pizza, Pasta & Things, located at 208 Underhill Ave. in West Harrison. I will be meeting with representatives from the Harrison Youth Council. If you have any questions for me or for the youth council, we will be at this location from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. and look forward to talking about issues facing our community.

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Column: The spirit of giving and sanitation schedule notice

Once again, the Harrison Fire Department successfully hosted a wonderful pancake breakfast at the downtown firehouse. This year’s event was held in support of the Harrison Girl Scouts. The pancake breakfast is a great opportunity to come out and meet the Harrison firefighters. Congratulations to all involved for making this event a very special community get-together.

Each year, Harrison’s three municipal fire departments host an annual inspection and dinner. Department members and their guests get together at their respective firehouses for the event. Leading up to this important occasion, department personnel provide hours of hard work, examining and cleaning firefighting apparatus, specifically the firetrucks and tools. I had the pleasure of attending all three inspections. The condition of each department’s equipment is unparalleled and department personnel should be applauded for their commitment and dedication. This attention to detail ensures that our fire departments will operate competently and with great efficiency, when needed.

Recently, the Louis M. Klein Middle School Service Club held a food drive for our local food pantry and collected canned goods and nonperishable items for the area’s families in need. The club consists of sixth, seventh, and eighth grade students and this year, they collected more than 2,000 items. For many families, a sudden downturn in economic stability could mean hunger. All communities have those who face financial challenges during tough times, and the good will of the LMK Service Club will help reduce hunger in the Town/Village of Harrison. Their donation will supply the basic nourishment that some of our senior citizens, children and working families need. I would like to take this time to thank the LMK Service Club for this very meaningful contribution. For more information on our food pantry, please contact Nina Marraccini at 670-3025.

Please make note of the following sanitation schedule change for the Thanksgiving holiday week. Garbage and recycling normally collected on Thursday, Nov. 26 will be collected on Wednesday, Nov. 25. There will be no bulk trash collected on Nov. 25.

Thanksgiving is about gathering with family and friends and celebrating the spirit of giving. It is a time for all of us to reflect and give thanks for the blessings of the past and look forward to future prospects with faith and optimism. On behalf of the Harrison town board, I wish all of you and your loved ones a safe, festive and happy Thanksgiving holiday.

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Column:Thank you for your support

I would like to take this opportunity to express my appreciation for the tremendous support I received on Election Day. Thank you for allowing me to serve the residents of Harrison, for another term, as mayor/supervisor on Harrison’s town board. It has been an honor to represent you and I will do my best to make your concerns my concerns.

There have been many successes over the last several years but we still have work to do. As we look to the future and face the challenges that lie ahead, I would like to encourage all of our residents to get involved. The town board and I will continue to do everything we can to serve the interests of the Town/Village of Harrison, so please come out and support the many exciting events that will take place over the coming years.

ArtsWestchester, a nonprofit organization whose mission is to ensure the availability and accessibility of the arts for all Westchester residents, has announced that it will be honoring two of our residents at their upcoming 50th anniversary gala on Friday, Nov. 20. Purchase resident Froma Benerofe and Harrison resident Jacqueline Walker, both former presidents of the arts council, will be recognized for their efforts in bringing attention to the organization as it grew into a nationally known private arts council. Congratulations to both Ms. Benerofe and Ms. Walker for this very important distinction.

The Harrison Youth Council, HYC, is participating in Lord & Taylor’s fundraising shopping event, “Shop Smart, Do Good,” on Friday, Nov. 13 at Lord & Taylor in Eastchester. For a $5 donation, you receive a ticket with three savings passes, with a value up to 25 percent off regular or sale priced items. HYC receives 100 percent of your $5 donation. You can purchase a ticket at the youth council office at 84 Calvert St. in Harrison between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m. on weekdays. For further information, please contact Debra Salerno at dsal725@optonline.net or the Harrison Youth Council Office at 835-7500.

Now that flu season is upon us, it’s not too late to get a flu shot. You can visit the Westchester County health department immunization clinics on alternating Fridays in White Plains and Yonkers. Call 995-5800 for White Plains or 231-2500 for Yonkers to set up an appointment. For more information, visit westchestergov.com/health.

In closing, “Praying for Greater Unity: Different Faith Traditions” will be the theme of the 2015 annual Thanksgiving service sponsored by the Interfaith Congregational Laymen’s Committee of Harrison, ICLC, to be held on Thursday, Nov. 19 at 7:30 p.m. at the JCC Harrison, 130 Union Ave. All are welcome. For additional information, please call Lola Geiger at 939-7066.

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Column: School safety tips and more reminders

I hope you all had a wonderful and relaxing Labor Day weekend and that families have successfully settled in to the routine of the new school year. In addition, I hope you were able to take a moment to appreciate the hard work of all the men and women who contribute to making our country one of the most productive and desirable locations in the world.

As the fall season nears and a new school year commences, I would like to remind our community to be conscious of back-to-school safety tips. Parents should instruct their children on safe practices for walking to and from school. Drivers should be aware of children who may be distracted while walking or biking through our neighborhoods on their way to and from school. In addition, drivers should be alert to school bus traffic and flashing lights that indicate loading or unloading students. Parents and community members can all do their part in keeping our children safe as they begin the new school year.

Please be aware that National Voter Registration Day is Tuesday, Sept. 22, 2015. This day is recognized throughout the United States and brings attention to the importance of registering to vote. The League of Women Voters of Harrison will be on hand at the Harrison Public Library, Harrison Shopping Center and DeCicco’s with voter registration forms and absentee ballot applications beginning at 10 a.m. According to Harrison League President Lola Geiger, anyone who was not registered previously, or who has moved, or who has changed his or her name needs to fill out a voter registration form. If needed, please be sure to stop by at one of the aforementioned locations where representatives will be available to answer any of your questions.

Westchester County will be organizing a 9/11 memorial ceremony on Friday, Sept. 11 at The Rising at Kensico Dam Plaza in Valhalla at 7 p.m. In commemoration of the lives lost on the 9/11 attacks, the anniversary program will include an honor guard, a wreath-laying ceremony and a recitation of the names of the 111 county residents and 12 former residents who lost their lives on that tragic day. In addition, the county and the Volunteer Center of United Way are urging local residents and business people to participate in volunteer services as a way to honor those whose lives were lost.

In closing, I would like to remind residents to refrain from putting any toxic materials on their property as a way to deter unwanted animals. A pesticide label, located on packaging of all pesticides and most toxic compounds, is deemed a legal document and expressly outlines appropriate use and application. If humans or animals are injured, due to misapplication, liability may result. Please proceed with caution.

My next “Lunch with the Mayor” will be on Sept. 11 and I will be at NY Pizza Station, located at 370 Halstead Ave. I will be at this location from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. and look forward to meeting with residents and talking about issues facing our community.

 

“Harrison Happenings” will be on hiatus for the duration of the 2015
election season. The column will return following Election Day, Nov. 3. 

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Column: A hometown hero and some reminders

I would like to bring your attention to a former Harrison resident and highly decorated member of the armed forces. Lt. Col. Daniel Bidetti was born and raised in Harrison, where he attended Harrison schools and Archbishop Stepinac High School. He graduated from Norwich University and was commissioned as a second lieutenant in May, 1999. In 2004, Daniel, as the company commander for the 173rd Support Battalion and Airborne Brigade, was deployed to Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan. In 2006 he was promoted to major and was deployed to Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2009. In July 2015 he was selected to be lieutenant colonel. In addition to the Bronze Star Medal, Daniel has been awarded the Meritorious Service Medal and the Joint Service Commendation Medal. He also has his Airborne Wings and a Combat Action Badge. It is my honor to recognize the outstanding commitment and sacrifice Daniel has made. As you can see, we have a lot to be proud of in this hometown hero.

For your viewing information, please make note of the following FiOS options: Channel 1960 will be featuring Town/Village of Harrison news and channel 1961 will be featuring Harrison Central School District news.

It’s never too early to think about fall. The Harrison Recreation Department’s goal is to create a fun environment where youngsters can learn and play. Kindergarten Kickers and First Grade Strikers offer a six-week, Saturday program for soccer skill building. There will be demonstrations and practices and each session will end with a scrimmage. The program starts on Sept. 19 and ends with a soccer picnic in the beginning of November.

The Harrison Swim Team, entering its 30th season, is currently accepting applications. The team will be returning to the Westchester/Fairfield Swim League, which consists of teams in the Westchester and Southern Connecticut area. Students from kindergarten through twelfth grade are eligible. Registration is rolling and evaluations are on Oct. 15 at the LMK pool at 6 p.m.

Please be advised of the following sanitation schedule change. The schedule change, during the week of Sept. 7, is as follows: Garbage and recycling normally collected on Monday, Sept. 7 will be collected on Tuesday, Sept. 8. Tuesday’s collection will be made on Wednesday, Sept. 9. There will be no bulk trash collection on Sept. 9.

In closing, as election season approaches, my regularly-featured mayor’s column in the Harrison Review will be on hiatus during the election campaign season from mid-September through mid-November. Primary Election Day is Thursday, Sept. 10 and I encourage all residents to get out and vote. While there is a contested race in progress, the paper cannot give one candidate an advantage over the other to promote their campaign platform through a weekly column. If you are interested in receiving the column during this interval, please email mayorscolumn@harrison-ny.gov and indicate that you would like to receive it. I look forward to sharing my views on significant issues and important events. Should you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact my office.

My next “Lunch with the Mayor” will be on Friday, Sept. 4 and I will be at Trevi Ristorante, located at 11 Taylor Square in West Harrison. On Friday, Sept. 11, I will be at NY Pizza Station, located at 370 Halstead Ave. I will be at both locations from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. and look forward to meeting with residents and talking about issues facing our community.

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Column: Winding down and help Stop Hunger Now

Recently, I had the pleasure of attending this year’s annual Senior Picnic in West Harrison. The weather could not have been better and more than 200 seniors enjoyed a day of fun and friendship. The appetizing menu included hamburgers and hot dogs, as well as chicken cutlets, sausage and peppers, salads and more. Our Recreation Department really outdid themselves this year and should be commended for their efforts. It was a great success and I enjoyed seeing many familiar friends and new faces. The annual Senior Picnic is a wonderful event and many of our senior residents look forward to it each year.

Harrison is responsible for managing accessible and safe public sidewalks and rights of way. Recently, trees on Halstead Avenue have been removed because their root beds have erupted, thereby lifting sections of the sidewalk and creating trip hazards for pedestrians. As much as I dislike taking down trees, this safety measure had to be done. These hazards pose liability risks to the Town/Village of Harrison and must be cured. The Highway Department is currently installing new sidewalks. New trees will be planted symmetrically, in the proper soils, so this condition does not reoccur. Should you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact my office.

I would like to bring your attention to the inaugural Stop Hunger Now event sponsored by Wells Fargo. Stop Hunger Now is an international hunger relief nonprofit organization and will be hosting an event on Wednesday, Sept. 16 at 6:30 p.m. at Halstead’s Bar and Grill in downtown Harrison. Those in attendance will be packaging 5,000 meals for families in need. Refreshments and a silent auction will follow, with all proceeds benefiting the Harrison Food Pantry. Together, we can work to help stop world hunger. I encourage anyone who would like to participate in this worthwhile event to RSVP to Adam Elgert at 777-4012 or adam.elgert@wellsfargo.com by Sept. 9.

As the summer winds down, I would like to bring your attention to a highly-anticipated end of the season event. Back by popular demand, the Brentwood Pool Puppy Plunge will take place from Tuesday, Sept. 8 through Friday, Sept. 11 from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. and over the weekend on Saturday, Sept. 12 and Sunday, Sept.13 from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. The lucky dogs of Harrison are invited to swim at the Brentwood Pool before it’s drained for the season. Due to health regulations, only dogs will be allowed in the pool during this special event. No registration is necessary and this event is free of charge for all Harrison residents.

In closing, my next “Lunch with the Mayor” will be on Friday, Sept. 4 and I will be at Trevi Ristorante, located at 11 Taylor Square in West Harrison. The next event will be on Friday, Sept. 11 at Quenas Restaurant, located at 109 Halstead Ave. I will be at both locations from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. and I look forward to meeting with residents and talking about issues facing our community.

 

 

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Column: Harrison mainstays and tips on staying cool

Some of our local merchants have had a long and distinguished presence in our community. Several Harrison businesses date back more than 75 years and I would like to feature our oldest retail establishments in this column. I’m taking this opportunity to ask readers to email me or call my office to suggest retailers that could be showcased for their longevity. I’m sure many of our residents would like to know more about these wonderful Harrison mainstays.

Please take note of the following announcement from the Harrison Public Library: The library will welcome the community to the brand new Richard E. Halperin Memorial Building at 2 Bruce Ave. on Saturday, Sept. 12, with a grand opening weekend celebration. The latest information technology and devices will be officially opened to the public following a year-long construction project. With enhanced exhibition and programming space, updated infrastructure and improved technology, the library is better equipped to provide services and encourage the exchange of ideas.

The celebration will include an art show, Japanese dancers, llamas, storytelling, a children’s maze, balloon animals, calligraphy demonstrations, a local author’s reception and book signing, a family scavenger hunt, puppet show, craft exhibits and performances by local bands.

The library’s $3.6 million renovation was made possible through a public-private partnership between the Town of Harrison, the Harrison Public Library and HPL Foundation and the Richard E. Halperin Memorial Fund, which contributed $1.3 million. Other major contributors included the Javitch Foundation honoring late Harrison resident Lee Javitch, the Jarden Corporation and Morgan Stanley. More than 500 private donors also contributed to the project. While the Harrison Public Library remains closed, Harrison residents are encouraged to utilize library services at both the West Harrison branch and the Purchase Free Library.

I would like to take this time to recognize the West Harrison Junior Firefighters. Fourteen Juniors trained and competed on Saturday, Aug. 1 and Sunday, Aug. 2 at the 14th annual Putnam County Fire Explorer Weekend Competition and won Best Overall for the second year in a row. Approximately eight teams, ranging from Suffolk County to Albany County, competed in this year’s competition. The Harrison Juniors won a total of four firematic events, placing first in EMS, first in Bucket Brigade, third in Hose Hockey and third in Search and Rescue. Congratulations to all the West Harrison competitors and their mentors, Assistant Chief Mike Pellegrino and First Lt. and advisor Rocco Umbro for a job well done.

Con Ed’s Government Relations Office recently contacted Harrison Town Hall and offered the following tips to residents on how to stay cool: to reduce heat and moisture in your home, run appliances such as ovens, washing machines, dryers and dishwashers in the early morning or late at night when it’s cooler outside, when the AC is running, close doors to keep cool air in and hot air out, keep shades, blinds and curtains closed even when using AC, use ceiling and other fans to provide additional cooling and better circulation and keep AC filters clean.

The next “Lunch with the Mayor” is on Friday, Aug. 21 and I will be at Silver Lake Pizza, located at 79 Lake St. in West Harrison from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. I look forward to meeting with residents and talking about issues facing our community.