Thursday, January 05, 2006

Pennies From Little People

Nunley Carousel's Cause Triumphed By A 7-Year Old

If it is true that "a child shall lead them," then, most certainly, second grader Rachel Obergh of Wantagh is leading the pack.

As reported recently in Newsday, Rachel, who loves everything about carousels, has started a campaign called "Pennies for Ponies," with the goal of raising $2000 from each of 42 elementary schools in Nassau County toward bringing the brass ring, and the music, back to the famed (and long-defunct) Nunley's Carousel. [The number "42" equaling the 41 ponies on the former Nunley Carousel, plus the one lion.] SEE An Old Carousel's New Spin.

The Community Alliance reported on the contentious carousel caper last April, when it appeared that the County and Town of Hempstead would once again be pitted against one another -- this time, on where the carousel would be placed. [SEE Of Carousels And Painted Ponies.] Now, thanks in part to the idea of a little girl with a big vision, it seems that both Town and County will work together to bring the Nunley Carousel back to its home in Baldwin.

Just to show how small ideas can generate big initiatives -- and how one person, no matter her age, can make a difference -- Rachel brought her campaign to the attention of County Executive Tom Suozzi, who not only endorsed "Pennies for Ponies," but pledged, together with Town of Hempstead Supervisor Kate Murray, to move forward with a plan that would restore the carousel in all of its grandeur.

$500,000 has already been raised by Billy Joel -- a carousel aficionado himself -- a figure considered necessary simply to recondition the carousel to its former glory. If Rachel Obergh has her way, the "Pennies for Ponies" campaign will raise at least another $84,000. [If your local elementary school would like to participate in "Pennies for Ponies," school officials can contact Rachel's mother, Beth Obergh, at]

If the Town of Hempstead and the County of Nassau can actually work together on the Nunley Carousel project, imagine what they could do -- working side by side -- on issues at least equally as pressing. Affordable housing? Done. Illegal rentals? Gone. Special Districts consolidated or eliminated? You bet.

We can almost hear Tom Suozzi say, "It takes team work to make the dream work," with Kate Murray chiming in, "I would absolutely work with the County to restore suburbia to America's largest township." Now, if only we could find a 7-year old to lead them!

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Cash For Community

Okay. "Pennies for Ponies" is great, but how about a few clicks (on the Ad Banner heading this blog) for the causes of community?

Every click brings The Community Alliance closer to cold cash that will be donated -- 100 cents on the dollar -- to a worthy community cause. [Through June, 2006, every dollar generated through the AdSense campaign will be donated to the American Cancer Society's Relay For Life.]

Just by clicking on the Ad Banner (no purchase or donation necessary), you will be helping to win the war against Cancer. Wouldn't it be nice to proclaim "Mission Accomplished" on that front?
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Let's see. "Pennies for Ponies," "Relay For Life." Hmm. If we can't get the Town of Hempstead to address quality of life issues in our villages and unincorporated hamlets, maybe we could start our own campaign. We can call it Community Alliance Saves Hempstead. Yeah. That's the ticket. We'll raise millions. Just make your checks payable to Community Alliance Saves Hempstead. [Too long to fit on your check? No problem. Use the acronym, CASH! LOL]

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