How to “Rock Shop” for the Holidays (c) 2010 Vivian R. Carter

Tap, Tap, Tap at Mrs. Elaine's School of Dance

The last few shopping days before Christmas have arrived; it’s liberating to assiduously avoid going anywhere near a mall.  There are many great Rockaway businesses where you can buy thoughtful and unique gifts.  First stop is to browse The Beach Gallery at Sunlites Stained Glass Studio (114 St. and RBB).  Renee Radenberg’s hand-crafted jewelry is being featured, and the shop will be open on the evening of Wed. Dec. 23 until 9 p.m. and on Friday, Dec. 24 until 6 p.m.  Other gift shops nearby include The Beach Bungalow (beach block of 116 Street) and The Gift is Love, on 116 Street between RBB and Newport.

Another great gift idea is a gift certificate from a spa, salon, or exercise studio.  My local favorites are Nail Country, Strands, Just Beautiful, Hot Yoga, Cyberzone, and Mrs. Elaine’s School of Dance.

Or give the gift of artwork.  Call Rockaway Artists’ Alliance and they will assist you in contacting a local artist whose work will suit your taste.  Another suggestion is to purchase a seat plaque at the Rockaway Theatre Company in the name of the person you are gifting.

If you still need a gift idea, just browse the tabbed list of my Rockaway advertising customers in this blog.  Most are happy to accommodate you with a gift certificate for a loved one.    

Staff at the Irish Circle Greet Santa and his elf!

This past weekend, there seemed to be private parties and charitable events everywhere—at Bayview Restaurant in Broad Channel, BayHouse in Breezy Point, the Knights of Columbus hall, and at the Irish Circle, as well.  On Saturday, the Irish Circle sponsored a “Toys for Tots” lunch with Santa.  Everyone had a great time, and their Santa was the best!  He really looked the part.

Jake, Catherine & “Auntie” Deb


The Rockaway Jetty charitable group had a very well-attended party at the K of C on Saturday, complete with popcorn and cotton candy machines, food catered by Russo’s on the Bay, a multi-media DJ, and gifts for the children of families who had been selected from the community.  Big smiles were everywhere!  Congratulations to the Jetty and the Circle for hosting these great Christmas celebrations.

Rockaway Jetty Volunteers

First Congregational Church sponsored a children’s multicultural winter music festival on Sunday afternoon, Dec. 18.  It was a great success–there was a diverse group of entertainers, from a Chinese fan dancer to a drumming/dance trio from the Ivory Coast, plus the

Swedish Folk Song

children sang Christmas songs in Spanish and English. 

The chapel was rocking when volunteers from the audience joined the African drummer and dancer for a little aerobic workout on the dance floor! 

W. African Drummer Justin Kafando and his daughter in traditional costume

If you get regular e-mail blasts from the 100 Precinct Community Council, you have probably heard that Jate Doremus, a long-time Rockaway civic activist, died on Friday.  A service was held at O’Connor Funeral Home at 10:00 a.m. on Monday, December 20. My condolences to Sandee and the Doremus family.  I have great memories of sitting with Jate, Sandee and Doug Macleod last year, watching the Queens County St. Patrick’s Day Parade from a vantage point at Beach 100 and RBB.  Jate cared deeply for this community and will be missed.         

I’m passing along the link to the “Best and Worst of Queens” poll.  The only Rockaway nomination this year is Rockaway Artists’ Alliance, for best arts, entertainment and culture organization.   We didn’t need an poll to tell us that RAA is really something special!  Saffron Restaurant in Howard Beach was nominated for best restaurant, as well.  Here’s the link so you can vote, if you are so inclined.  Deadline by which to vote is Wed. Dec. 22.  Good luck to RAA and Saffron!

I hope to post again before the week is out.  If that doesn’t happen, don’t say I didn’t wish you a “Merry Christmas!”

About rockviv

You've entered the cyber-locale of Vivian Rattay Carter, a grant writer employed by Women's Housing and Economic Development Corporation in The South Bronx. I've lived and worked in the New York metro area since 1979, in diverse places like Astoria and Rockaway Beach (Queens), Kensington and Windsor Terrace (Brooklyn), Grand Street and Tribeca (Manhattan), and Norwood, Woodlawn, and Riverdale (The Bronx). I treasure the amazing parks, architecture, and cultural institutions of our multicultural city, as well as the musicians and music lovers who enjoy congregating here.
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