By Trudy Whitman
For Brooklyn Daily Eagle
Super storm Sandy sandbagged the Greenwich Village Halloween Parade and tabled Park Slope’s, but with the help of Captain Jeffrey Schiff, who honored a permit, and the multi-tasking officers of the 76th Precinct, the Cobble Hill Costume Parade was a “go.” As with all city parks, Cobble Hill Park entrances were cordoned off with yellow police tape, but parade goers squeezed onto brimming streets around the park awaiting the music of the Jah Pan Steel Drum Band to signal the beginning of the march through the neighborhood. Police officers diverted traffic so that little revelers could revel.
The precinct estimated the crowd at 5,000, which is easy to believe as the shoulder-to-shoulder masses made it difficult to take photographs. Roy Sloane, president of the Cobble Hill Association, told us that the organization had pushed for permission to proceed. If there was ever a Halloween that needed to be celebrated, it was Halloween 2012, he said, adding that the collective mood was even more ebullient than in the past.
Indeed, the costumed witches, warlocks, and whatevers had to be less frightening to young children than the television images of floods, fallen trees, fires, and bereft New Yorkers Sandy left in its wake.
A tip of the wig to Melissa Glass, party organizer extraordinaire, and her crew of volunteers who made it all happen.
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The Cobble Hill Association did have to cancel another much-anticipated event—the Fall General Meeting scheduled for October 29. A “Report on Health Care: Are We Meeting the Needs of Children and Seniors in Cobble Hill?” would have focused on the needs of members of our community at either end of the age spectrum. The scheduled speakers were Dr. John F. Williams, president of Downstate Medical Center, and Tony Lewis, president and CEO of the Cobble Hill Health Center on Henry Street. Pediatrician Edna A. Pytlak, M.D., who lives in Cobble Hill and who has been practicing in the neighborhood for almost 30 years, was to receive the Cobble Hill Hero Award.
CHA president Roy Sloane told this newspaper that he is doing his best to reschedule the fall gathering, but the busy calendars of the invited speakers might necessitate postponing the event until spring. Visit cobblehillassociation.blogspot.com for updates.
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The dangerous section of Court Street just south of Atlantic is becoming safer, thanks to the efforts of community activist Jerry Armer, Cobble Hill Association vice-president Paco Abraham, and the Department of Transportation. Pedestrians crossing the busy shopping strip at Amity Street have it a little easier now that DOT has installed a new traffic signal. The light is not only larger but has a warning yellow signal before red turns green, causing drivers to think twice before making an illegal against-the-traffic, backwards-S turn left on Court and then right onto Dean.
In addition, DOT has proposed installing bike racks in the “No-Standing” zone at Pacific and Court streets. Illegally parked cars in this zone make it difficult for cyclists and pedestrians to see what’s coming at them as drivers turn left from Pacific onto Court.