Big crowds, rave reviews for Valley Stream street fair

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Jamilet Martinez, 19, and Christian Cardona, 17, said they came upon the festival by chance, but were glad they did. “They have everything here,” Martinez said before taking a quiz offered by the Valley Stream Historical Society with questions about her community’s past.

There were musical performances on the Town of Hempstead “Showmobile” throughout the day. Several children’s and student groups performed at the intersection of Rockaway and Lincoln avenues, including the Grace Thunderette baton twirling team and the South High School Cultural Society.

Ajay Hossen, 17, a senior at South and a five-year member of the Cultural Society, said it’s always nice to perform in front of a big crowd, especially children.

At a table set up by Friends of Bridge Inc., a local substance abuse treatment facility, members chatted with people as they walked by. “I have to say how proud I am that these young people have come in and decided that we needed something for the community like this [street fair],” said Ida D’Angelo, president of Friends of Bridge. “I’m in awe.”

Valley Stream resident Shoshanah Findling had some of her watercolor artwork on display, and said that the proceeds of any sales would go to the Peter J. DeSibio Five Towns Child Care Center in Inwood, a nonprofit child-care center. Findling said she received positive feedback all day about her artwork. “I’m amazed that so many people came,” she said of the festival.

Mayor Ed Fare and Judge Bob Bogle were guest bartenders at P.J. Harper’s. Before he began pouring drinks, Fare addressed the crowd and the festival committee members from the Showmobile. “I can’t thank the committee enough,” he said. “This is a labor of love. All these people spent an awful lot of time and an awful lot of energy putting this together.”

David Sabatino, the committee’s organizer, said he was glad the day was a success. “Everyone that had a booth or space seemed to really enjoy the day,” he said, “and thought it was valuable for them and for the community.”
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