Tag Archives: awards

The St. Margaret’s/Resurrection Flyers celebrate record-breaking season

| agiudice@ridgewoodtimes.com

Photo courtesy St. Margaret's/Resurrection Flyers

During their end-of-season celebration, the St. Margaret’s/Resurrection Flyers presented special plaques to runners, including those who broke records this season.

Senior girl Karolina Niepokoj received a special plaque to commemorate her record-breaking performance in the 800-meter run this year. Also receiving special plaques were novice boys Josiah Boulet, Kevin Isca, Unai Higgins and Andrew Kelly for setting a new record in the 600-meter medley relay earlier in the season.

For winning the Diocesan Championship in the indoor 600-meter medley relay, novice boys Josiah Boulet, Kevin Isca, Unai Higgins and Andrew Kelly won a special plaque and sweatshirt. Also winning were senior boy Luc Cathersal and junior girl Ainara Higgins for the indoor long jump.

The Diocesan champs for the indoor 800-meter race were senior girl Karolina Niepokoj and her bantam brother Kacper Niepokoj and junior girl Zara McPartland. For the indoor 400-meter run, junior boy Michael Hubert won the Diocesan and was awarded with the plague and sweatshirt as well.

For the outdoor season, bantam boy Ricky Hubert, junior girl Zara Mcpartland and senior girl Karolina Niepokoj earned their plaques and sweatshirts for their performance in the 800-meter run. Winning the Diocesan for the outdoor long jump were senior boy Luc Cathersal and senior girl Ainara Higgins.

Other winners during the outdoor season were novice boy Andrew Kelly in the 400-meter run and novice girl Olaia Higgins for the 100-meter dash.

Two of the Flyers’ relay teams won the Diocesan Championship this year. First was junior/senior girls 400-meter medley relay team consisting of Nina Allen and sisters Shauna and Rebecca Hurson. The second outdoor Diocesan champion relay team runners were junior/senior boys Johnny Ostling, John Boger and Owen Kelly for the 400-meter medley race.

In addition to the plaques and sweatshirts being awarded, special coaches’ awards were presented to outstanding runners during the season.

The Super Spirit trophies were given to novice girl Aileen Mitrarotonda and bantam boy Victor Ostling. The Terrific Teammate awards went to novice girl Olaia Higgins and junior boy Owen Kelly. The Excellent Effort trophies went to junior girl Lili Cathersal and novice boy Unai Higgins. The Fantastic Flyer awards went to senior girl Ainara Higgins and senior boy Johnny Ostling.

The award for most valuable runner went to senior girl Karolina Niepokoj.

The Flyers will be back for a new season on Saturday, Sept. 12, at the track at Juniper Valley Park.


The Queens Courier earns honors from New York Press Association

By Queens Courier Staff | editorial@queenscourier.com

THE COURIER/Photo by Angy Altamirano

The Queens Courier took home first place in overall advertising excellence and other awards in the New York Press Association‘s 2014 Better Newspaper Contest.

The awards were distributed during the NYPA Spring Convention held March 27 to 29 in Saratoga Springs.

“I’m bursting with pride that the New York Press Association recognized our talented, professional and dedicated staff members,” Courier Publisher Victoria Schneps said.

Among those receiving individual honors were Stephen Reina, assistant art director, who earned second place in the Best Special Section Cover category for his “Come in from the cold” Queens winter events cover from last January.

Liam La Guerre, The Courier’s real estate editor, earned second place in the News Story category and third place in the Best News or Feature Series category for his April 3, 2014, story regarding funds missing from a Briarwood school’s PTA treasury, which threatened to ruin the school’s fifth-grade graduation ceremony.

Angy Altamirano received an honorable mention for her July story regarding Donhauser Florist in East Elmhurst, a 125-year-old fixture in the community located next to a motel converted into a homeless shelter.

The Courier’s sister paper, The Home Reporter in Brooklyn, earned an honorable mention for a sports feature by Jaime DeJesus on an amputee baseball game in Bay Ridge during the 1950s.


Former Queens resident selected to create official artwork for Grammys

| aaltamirano@queenscourier.com

Laurence Gartel (c) The Recording Academy 2014 / Photos courtesy of Laurence Gartel

The top names in the music industry won’t be the only ones shining during the 57th Annual Grammy Awards. One former Queens resident has been given the honor to create the official artwork for “music’s biggest night.”

Laurence Gartel, who has been called the “father of digital art” and spent 19 years of his early life living at the North Shore Towers in Floral Park, has created a version of the iconic Grammy figurine that will be used on the ceremony’s program book, tickets, poster and other promotional materials.

The life-sized statuette is wrapped in “psychedelic” imagery known to be Gartel’s style using vinyl, glitter and prismatic materials.

“It’s pretty darn amazing,” Gartel said about how it felt to be chosen as the official artist for the award ceremony. “I’m always looking to top myself and this certainly tops it. It feels great.”

Gartel’s first interaction with digital art came in 1975 when he met Nam June Paik, considered to be the founder of video art, at Media Study/Buffalo in upstate New York.

Although his artistic career began when he was nine at the Pels School of Art, working side to side with Paik was what started Gartel’s electronic career.

“That was sort of the birth of it all,” he said. “Electronic images could take over a painting on the wall.”

Gartel began working on computers the size of rooms, before the invention of personal computers, and started a technique prior to any software being created for painting and photo manipulation.

“You just go up to a machine and just start manipulating things and get images you couldn’t get otherwise,” Gartel said. “When you’re creating things that no one has seen before, that’s amazing.”

Since then his colorful images and pioneering designs have been used in advertising campaigns such as one for Absolut Vodka in 1991, which ran for 10 years. He has also worked alongside musicians such as Sid Vicious and the Ramones, and created artwork for artists such as Justin Timberlake.

One of his collaborative pieces includes partnering with Glen Greenberg of Elmont Glass Atelier for “art on glass” works that premiered at Art Hamptons.

His other individual pieces have been exhibited at the Museum of Modern Art, MoMA PS1, and in the permanent collections of the Smithsonian Institution’s Museum of American History and the Bibliothèque Nationale de France.

In the past few years, Gartel has also taken his artwork and created “art cars,” donning his colorful designs on vehicles such as a Mercedes and Rolls Royce. He was also featured in the 113th Annual New York International Auto Show in April.

With having finished the artwork for the Grammys, which is set to air Feb. 8, Gartel said he continues to move ahead with new ventures and creating unique pieces.

“I’m looking forward to the future,” Gartel said.

For more information, visit www.gartelart.com.


Bayside Little League bestows honors

| MKirk@queenscourier.com

George Goger now has a plaque that reads “Great Jiminy Cricket!”

He was feted with the Frank Coppelli Memorial Coach of the Year award for his work with the 10- through 12-year-olds of the Bayside Little League.

The players, coaches and parents packed into Our Lady of the Blessed Sacrament School on Saturday morning, September 8 for an awards ceremony to commemorate the end of another season.

While the event itself signified there was a sense of pride in all that the players and teams accomplished, Bayside Little League commissioner Bob Reid said that the main purpose of summer ball was something much more intangible.

“The goal is to create a memory he or she will carry with them throughout their adult life,” he said.

The players, who ranged from five to 13, received awards for team and individual achievements, along with plaques recognizing their participation in the league. According to Reid, 2012 saw 847 children come out to play for 64 teams.

This year’s Home Run Derby champion was 13-year-old Jamie Reagan, who was able to blast three homers in five swings during the competition this summer.

Reagan said it was “really fun” to have won the award and credits his success to practicing with his father.

“We go to Cunningham Park and do batting practice a lot,” Reagan said.

As for “Coach of the Year” Goger, the saying on his plaque is a testament to the season.

“It’s all I ever hear him saying on the field,” Reid quipped.

Before presenting Goger the award, Reid reiterated his stance on Little League being about more than scores and records.

“The Coach of the Year award goes to a coach who has shown that winning isn’t everything,” he said. “They instill in their players that having fun is more important. They’re always there for the players and make sure every player is in the game.”

Also following this theme was the Scholarship Award, which was started by Bayside Little League three years ago. The contest is solely for players about to enter high school and asks them to write an essay about how youth sports has prepared them for the future. After 10 entries had been reviewed by the league’s five-judge panel, the winner of the $1,500 prize was declared Charles Angelo Maisano.

The Christopher Adam Scott Memorial Most Valuable Player Award pays homage to an 11-year-old boy who was killed after being struck by a vehicle on a Clearview Expressway overpass in 2000. This year Christopher Velaoras took home the honor.

Both the 10-and-under and 12-and-under teams were recognized for the tournaments they won over the summer as well. The 10U team racked up championships for the District 26 and Rosenbluth tourneys, while the 12U team won a first place trophy at the Gorman Tournament.

One by one the wall of trophies dwindled as kids ran up to receive them, giving their coaches high-fives and fist pounds as they made their way onto the stage, their family members applauding in the audience.

“I think it went very well considering the weather,” league board member Marty Palermo said as the rain drummed against the windows. “It was a big turnout. Packed. I think all the kids had a lot of fun.”


Jamaica Rotary applauds cops

| aaltman@queenscourier.com


Law enforcement officials, Rotary members and civic group leaders assembled in a reception hall at Villa Russo on Wednesday, April 25 for the Jamaica Rotary’s monthly meeting to discuss current matters and celebrate the outstanding work of local police officers.

From the 102nd Precinct, officers Christopher Valand and Pablo DeJesus received recognition for their takedown of three individuals who had stolen a car. On March 30, the officers observed an Infinity with three people inside. After eyeing the cops, the vehicle sped off and the officers chased after them, radioing in the car’s description to a dispatcher. While in pursuit, the police saw the doors open several times with the suspects displaying firearms. The officers were able to apprehend two of the perpetrators during the pursuit and the third was arrested when he attempted to report the car was stolen.

On Friday, March 2 around midnight, officers William Connick and Mathew Rehman from the 103rd Precinct were out on routine patrol when they heard two gunshots coming from a south Jamaica housing development. The officers spotted an individual holding a gun and another individual on the ground who appeared to be injured. After chasing the individual on foot, he attempted to enter a car with a man and a woman inside. All three individuals were arrested and a 22-caliber, semi-automatic gun was obtained. These arrests led to 11 other arrests and the recovery of five firearms.

Officers Thomas Reo and James Dameron from the 113th Precinct were rewarded for their excellent police work as well. On Sunday, March 18, while on patrol in an area of known gang activity, the officers saw a suspicious looking vehicle with three individuals inside. After inciting a foot pursuit with the individuals, police obtained two loaded .9 mm firearms. Of the three individuals, one was on parole for robbery, one had a history of burglaries and the other was recently released from jail. All three were apprehended by police.

“Burglary is a constant battle,” said 106th Precinct Captain Thomas Pascale when it came time for him to award the officers from his precinct.

On Wednesday, April 18, officers John Gridley, Michael Ranoide and Filip Glowa saw an individual wearing gloves and carrying a flashlight. When they questioned the individual about his reason for being in that area, he claimed he was visiting his girlfriend but could not provide her name or address. The man was positively identified as someone who had been seen in a home where a burglary took place and he was arrested. This suspect has been caught for burglaries in several precincts and has spent 15 years in prison.