A Christmas Present For The Legacy Of Ann Galante Would Be Having The Bandshell Named In Her Honor
As we approach the Dec. 18 Christmas Concert date at Chaminade H. S. featuring the Nassau Pops, we think of how the orchestra started its collaboration with Mineola. In the late 1980s Mayor Ann Galante brought the Pops to Memorial Park for its first performance which has led to an annual tradition enjoyed by countless people ever since. The Pops’ performances escalated to include the yearly Christmas Concert.
Under Mayor Galante’s administration, Mineola was declared a “Tree City.” She also was responsible for starting the summer recreation program for the children of Mineola. Ann was in her office every day to serve the needs of Mineola residents as a full time mayor.
An Ann Galante Memorial Bandshell would satisfy the criteria for such an honor. She brought both music and trees to Mineola. I have submitted 380 petition signatures for this purpose and spoke to the Board of Trustees on two occasions. As I was leaving the meeting room at the end of the second session, one trustee expressed his opinion that such a honor, naming the bandshell, should go to someone who died in some form of a battle, for example, fighting a fire or being killed during a war. I disagree. I think that’s a limited definition of a memorial. Wikipedia describes a memorial as an object which serves as a focus for the memory of something, usually a person who has died (no mention of how he/she died).
Maestro Louis Paniccuilli and the Nassau Pops has provided free concerts to people who normally wouldn’t hear a symphony orchestra. He also should be honored with a plaque on the structure recognizing his many contributions to Mineola. In addition to music, Lou serves as a member of the Mineola Chamber of Commerce Board of Directors and received the “Businessman of the Year” award from that group.
The time is right and the criteria is justifiable to honor and keep alive the memory of Mayor Ann Galante for future generations to have knowledge of her contributions to Mineola by naming the bandshell for this wonderful woman.