Did you take a moment to pray for the six people who were killed in the bombing and terrorist attack of the World Trade Center on February 26, 1993?  More than 1,000 people were injured in the truck bomb explosion in the basement level parking garage.  This was, at the time, the deadliest act of terrorism on United States soil.  My brother, Mark, was working that day and ran down many flights of stairs to safety.  I will never forget what an impact this had on him and our family and how he was one of the lucky ones.  Little did any of us know that this was a prelude to the terrorist attacks at the Pentagon in Washington, DC, Shanksville, PA and the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001 killing over 2,900 people.  Mark was working nearby and again was one of the lucky ones who escaped from the disaster of the World Trade Center Bombing.  As Staten Islanders, every day we witnessed another funeral procession, another fireman or neighbor being buried and then finally remains of the victims being buried.  Over the course of fifteen years, remains of 1,640 victims have been identified; the remains of 1,113 victims have not.  It was estimated that the death toll was over 6,000, more than twice the number eventually confirmed. 

Every person I met knew someone who died that day. A few days before the bombings, I was showing a commercial building to customers accompanied by their friend, John Chipura. He told me he is a fireman, had been a police officer and would check out the building with a fine-tooth comb to insure it was safe for his friend to purchase.  We chatted and it turned out he had worked with my friend who was a police officer. On Tuesday, 9/11/01, John “Chip” Chipura perished in the attacks.  This Saturday, 3/4 from 9-3, the John G. Chipura Foundation and the Boy Scouts will host a Blood Drive in honor of Firefighter John G. Chipura at Our Lady Help of Christians Gymnasium, 7396 Amboy Rd. If you would like to read about the Boy Scout, Marine, Police Officer, Fireman John Chipura and the Foundation, please visit http://chipura.moonfruit.com/home/4577420956. To confirm eligibility before you donate blood, please call 1-800-933-Blood.

After last week’s blog about the Sea Shanty Sessions and reminiscing about Sailors Snug Harbor, some of my gentle readers weighed in with their memories.  Bobby remembered “attending” first-run movies with the snugs and noted that they kept four bars in business.  Anne Marie told me her Dad worked as a boy picking corn in the farm at Sailors Snug Harbor.  Peggy remembered the four bars—The Hole in the Wall, Tanks, Mariners Inn and Leidy’s where the snugs enjoyed refreshment.  And my son recalled that he heard from a relative that my Dad used to work at the Harbor when he was a teenager. My cousin, Tommy, remembers his Mom and uncles sharing stories about how they played in the Harbor as kids and always told him to “look for the cows” whenever they passed the Harbor at Henderson Ave. Thank you to Dan Lane for his photo of the tombstone of seaman, Charles C. Ferguson, found at the Snug Harbor Cemetery next to Allison Pond in Randall Manor.  Dan tells me that there are very few tombstones remaining.

Did you learn how to decorate a cake at the Fondant Cake Decorating Workshop at Pastry Lovers Choice this weekend?  See entry below on Sunday for the next baking event.  If you missed the Third Annual “Cops vs. Kids” chess and checkers tournament last week, keep reading my blog for the next one at the 122 or email pr@islandvoice.org or Theresa.hunt@nypd.org for the schedule.

The Mobile Market of City Harvest is held twice a month year-round and provides free fruits, vegetables and recipes.  The Mobile Market is held every 1st Wednesday and 3rd Saturday in front of the Senior Center at 22 Roxbury St. from 9:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. on the following dates:

Mar. 1 and 18, Apr. and 15, May 3 and 20, June 7 and 17.

You are eligible if you reside in Mariners Harbor, Todt Hill or West Brighton NYCHA houses, Arlington Terr. Apts or live in the 10302, 03, 10 or 14 zip codes.  Bring proof of address and matching photo ID.

Attend the Bird and Nature Walk with the Staten Island Museum on Wednesday, 3/1 at 10 at the South Beach Dolphin Fountain, Fr. Capodanno Blvd. and Sand Ln. Search for wintering harbor seals off South Beach and Ft. Wadsworth, where they have been seen in increasing numbers in recent years. Meet in the parking lot with the Dolphin Fountain off Fr. Capodanno Blvd. For info, call 718-727-1135  or visit http://www.statenislandmuseum.org/calendar-programs/bird-and-nature-walk-south-beach-fort-wadsworth1

Enjoy English Country Dance Class on Wednesday at 7 at Historic Richmond Town, 441 Clarke Ave.  All dances are taught so experience is not necessary and beginners are welcome. Come with a friend or come without a partner. You will benefit from the cardio without knowing that you've been exercising. Admission is $10.  Class takes place most Wednesdays, but call 718-351-1611 ext. 283 to confirm for dates after March 1. 

The Pipes are Calling at St. Alban's Episcopal Church, 76 St Albans Pl. on Thursday from 7:30-10.  Join Staten Island’s community Bagpipe & Drum band proudly serving Staten Island and the greater NYC area for almost 40 years. Free Lessons on bagpipes and drums take place every Thursday night except holidays.  You will be taught everything you need to know.  Family Fun! Bring a Friend! No Experience Necessary! Please email ahead in case of any unforeseen cancellations: richmondcountypipesdrums@gmail.com For more info call Kathy Burke at 917-837-3272 or visit http://www.richmondcountypipesanddrums.com

The Deadline to apply for the fall FREE Universal Pre-K classes has been extended to Friday, 3/3.  You must submit an application in order to receive placement for your child.  You can apply online at nyc.gov/prek or over the phone at 718-935-2067 or in person at the DOE’s Family Welcome Center at the Petrides School, 715 Ocean Terr. 

The Tavern Concerts continue this Friday, 3/3 at 8 with Michael Morreale, playing brass and jazz and Saturday, 3/4 at 6 and 8 with Dirdy Birdies Jug Band at Historic Richmond Town, 441 Clarke Ave.  Admission is $13 online or $15 at the Door. On-line tickets are available up until 3pm, two weekdays before the event. For Saturday and Sunday events, tickets are available online until 3 pm Thursday.  Call 718-351-1611 for reservations. ‘

Join artist Warren Lyons as he discusses the process and inspiration behind the work in his current exhibition Of Human Feelings: Portraits by Warren Lyons on Saturday at 2 at the Staten Island Museum, 75 Stuyvesant Pl. The exhibition showcases a powerful series of monumental paintings of figures from American history and the arts, including Billie Holiday, Abraham Lincoln, Frederick Douglass, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Sojourner Truth, Paul Robeson, and others. Free with Museum Admission.  

The Richmond Christian Church is hosting “A Night of Inspiration”, a collaborative musical experience that will touch your heart, at Fr. Capodanno Chapel, Ft. Wadsworth, 203 New York Ave. on Saturday at 7.  Admission is FREE and open to the public.  For details, visit www.richmondnyc.org

Attend the Reception for Gene Wagner’s "State of the Art” Micro-exhibit on Saturday at 7 at Hub 17, 73 Wave St. For information, visit http://www.onwavestreet.com/events/2017/3/4/micro-exhibition-reception-for-gene-wagner or call 917-558-5271. 

Avon Faire, a female singing group, will perform on Saturday, 3/4 at 7 at the Noble Maritime Collection, 1000 Richmond Terr., Bldg. D. Enjoy traditional UK and Irish folk songs featuring special guest performer Cait O'Riordan of The Pogues. They will be joined by local Irish step-dancer students and will also have a Sea-shanty song-along during the show! Admission is $10.  For info, call 718-447-6490 or visit  http://www.noblemaritime.org

Stargazing with the Amateur Astronomers Assn. of NYC is Saturday at 7:30 at Gateway National Recreation Area at Great Kills Park. Enter the park at Hylan Blvd. and Buffalo St., proceed approximately one mile to large parking lot on left. Observing site is in the southeast corner, near small playground. Telescopes will be provided. Call 718-980-6130 for details.

The 53rd Annual St. Patrick’s Day Parade takes place on Sunday, 3/5 at 12:30 from the intersection of Forest Ave. and Hart Blvd. The family-friendly  procession ends at Jewett Ave. You can post your parade photos on Twitter or Instagram using the hashtag #SILive.   Check out Pamela Silvestri’s official food, drink and restaurant guide at http://www.silive.com/dining/index.ssf/2017/02/when_is_staten_islands_forest.html 

The Staten Island Arts Folklife invites you to raise your fiddles and tap your feet to the rousing rhythms of traditional Irish music, a St. Patrick's Day Special, on Sunday from 2-5 at the Flagship Brewing Company, 40 Minthorne St. Call 718-448-5284 for info. 

Join Pastry Lovers Choice, 370 Van Duzer St. on Sunday at 3 for a fun My Kid and Me Cupcake Workshop. Bring your little one(s) and work together to create delicious and beautiful cupcakes. Pricing is $35 per child. Adults are free. Please include your phone number when you register for the workshop at https://www.facebook.com/events/1100611506751918/   

The Staten Island Council of Churches invites you to join Christians of various denominations for this Ecumenical Lenten Worship Service on Sunday at 4 at St. Mark's UM Church 6144 Amboy Rd.  Call 718-761-6782 for details.

The Summer Youth Employment Program Applications are here.  SYEP provides NYC youth ages 14-24 with “paid” summer employment for up to six weeks in July and August. SYEP also provides workshops on job readiness, career exploration, financial literacy and opportunities to continue education and social growth. Youth can apply for the program online at https://application.nycsyep.com/  or at a community-based organization during the application period. Participants are selected by lottery for the program. You can apply online or print out an application to fill out by hand. For additional information call 1-800-246-4646 or blicata@unitedactivities.org

I welcome comments and photos at events you have attended.  If you want to share events specifically for children or adults or seniors, by all means, email or call me. 

NOTE TO MY GENTLE READERS: If you enjoy reading my blog--“Weekend Events on Staten Island” and are not a friend of mine on Facebook but would like to be, you know what to do—friend request.  If you would prefer to be on my mailing list, please contact me at joan.coogan@gmail.com or call me at 646-258-9696. I will forward it to you each week.  Nevertheless, will you do me the honor of sharing the blog with your friends, either on Facebook (click “Share” underneath the blog) or e-mail?  I would appreciate it. 

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