By Anya Tikka
LAKE HUNTINGTON The Solomon Katzoff Memorial Park grand opening in Lake Huntington was celebrated with pirate costumes, food and speeches.
There was also a special presentation by Sullivan Renaissance Program Director Glen Pontier of a painting of the new pirate ship within the park for kids to play on.
Cochecton Supervisor Gary Maas, dressed as a pirate, said in his speech after the unveiling of the memorial plaque, “I couldn’t be more proud. Every day I see parents bringing their children here, the park is well used.”
Maas can see the activities from his office in the town hall, which sits on the hill overlooking the park.
At the entrance to the park was a huge replica of the award check for $10,000 made out to the Cochecton Volunteer Ambulance Service by the Sullivan Renaissance for winning in Category B.
“We finally handed in the real check,” remarked Pontier to laughter from the audience.
Rosemary Barile of the Cochecton Volunteer Ambulance Corps worked hard with her dad Joseph Manaseri, Michelle Barca, and Corps Captain Herbie Sawall to bring to fruition the vision that started to take shape after the death of “Solly” Katzoff, who was well known in the area as the owner of Katzoff Realty and as member of the Board of the National Bank of Jeffersonville.
Katzoff’s widow Gertrude and brother Herbert with his wife Doris came to the dedication, thanking everyone for everything they had done.
“Rosemary got everybody together, it was her dream,” said Eileen Hennessy, another active member of the community.
Program presenter Herb Sawall agreed that everyone followed Rosemary’s lead. Family, friends and well-wishers joined in the ceremony on the overcast, humid day.
“Next year, we’re planning to build a gazebo, walkways, and a bocce ball court,” said Sawall.
Editor's Note: Gertrude Katzoff passed away on Monday, October 3.