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Thursday, July 31, 2014
The girl on the flying trapeze
Herald intern receives aerial lesson at Eisenhower
By Grace Poppe
Christine Maguire/Herald
Grace Poppe's learns the trapeze at Eisenhower Park with the I Fly Trapeze School.
Penny Frondelli/Herald
Poppe takes off with the help of the I Fly staff

I am 18 years old, and despite my love of travel and new experiences, I have never really considered myself the adventurous type. However, I surprised my family, friends and even myself when I agreed to try a private trapeze lesson at Eisenhower Park in East Meadow for the first time. Although I doubted my meager gymnastics experience from the age 4 would be of much help, the prospect was enticing.

At 11 a.m. on July 18, I headed over to the I Fly Trapeze School at Eisenhower Park. Trying to forget about the sweltering heat, I focused instead on the exciting adventure ahead and the amusing fact that I would soon be propelled through the air while my co-workers sat comfortably and safely at the Herald offices in Garden City.

I was joined by Commissioner Carnell Foskey and Justin Logerfo of the Nassau County Parks and Recreation Department for the lesson. Greeting us there were employees Shane Weaver, Taylor Feingold, D.J. Zidek and owner Anthony Rosamilia, who founded the company with his brother, Marco, in 2006 after the two had previously performed entertainment trapeze at Club Med resorts. Anthony recalled that he simply never stopped doing trapeze after his experience as a 13 year-old. “I flew once, and it just bit me like a bug,” he said.

The school attracts about thirty people per day, some as young as 4, and Anthony said that people of any skill level can succeed at trapeze. “All you have to do is hold on and listen,” he said. “It just comes down to practice.”

Weaver kicked off our lesson with a demonstration. He swung forward, hooked his legs over the bar, let his hands go and hung freely backward. The end was a powerful flip backward and a bounce into the safety net. Logerfo eagerly volunteered to go next, and had an impressive first run on the ropes, with Foskey next in line after him. “It wasn’t scary at all,” Foskey said afterward. “There was a lot of adrenaline flowing.”

Despite watching the other participants, I had no idea what to expect. The small knot in my stomach grew as I climbed the ladder, but I didn’t want to hold back and have regrets after trying something I may never do again. The staff members helped me over to the platform at the top and told me to lean forward while the bar swung up to meet me.

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