New Year’s brunch attracts who’s who of boro leaders

TimesLedger Newspapers

Hopefully, the holiday party season is finally beginning to wind down. I don’t mind feeling dead tired, but when you look in the mirror and you look dead tired, that’s where you have to draw the line.

On Wednesday afternoon, Debbie Markell and I had lunch together at the Georgia Diner in Elmhurst and while there we saw Mike Reich and his partners also having lunch. So many diners have been closing lately that we all seem to run into each other at the remaining few.

That evening, Paul Vallone hosted the monthly meeting of the Bayside-Whitestone Lions in his law office on Francis Lewis Boulevard. The Lions is a good group of citizens who try their best to give aid and comfort to the needy.

On Thursday evening, the Queens Village Republican Club held its January meeting at the Trattoria Lucia. The guest speakers were Bob Friedrich, who seemed upset with the rumored new redistricting line — in fact, he wants to hold a protest rally at the Frank Padavan High School on the Creedmore Grounds.

The other speaker of the evening was GOP County Chairman Phil Ragusa, who brought everyone up to date on the comings and goings of the Queens Republican Party. One of the things he did was tout the New American Eagle Republican Club in Forrest Hills.

On Friday afternoon there was a political strategy meeting at Janet Malone’s house in Flushing.

On Sunday at 12:30 p.m., hosts Mathew Silverstein, Debbie Markell and Warren Schreiber held their second annual New Year’s Party Brunch at Debbie’s spacious Whitestone home, which is ideal for that sort of party.

Just about everyone was there. The top billing went to City Council Speaker Christine Quinn and city Comptroller John Liu, both of whom are reportedly interested in running for mayor in 2013. The third heavy-hitter was state Comptroller Tom DiNapoli, who is happy with his job and not interested in running for mayor.

Some of the others present were Evan and Toby Stavisky. Toby said that when Tom made his address during the State of the State address in Albany, he received applause that was longer and louder than even the governor received. Everyone on both sides of the aisle are happy with the job DiNapoli is doing.

Others present were Carol and Larry Gresser, Ed Braunstein, Steve Behar, Claire Shulman, Linda De Sabbato, Dolly De Thomas, Trudy La Forgia, David Weprin, Arthur Cheliotes, Devon O’Connor, Grace Meng and her husband, Kay Glover, Margaret McGowan, Leroy Comrie, Karen Koslowitz, John Duane, Michael DenDekker, Myra Baird-Herce, Chuck Wade, Mary Conaty, Debbie’s husband Barry Klienert and the list goes on and on. It was a lovely party and I would like to thank the “Three Musketeers” for inviting me.

After that event, it was off to the Polonaise Terrace in Greenpoint, where the Polish American Congress was holding its annual Christmas “Oplatek” Celebration, which is always a fun event. This included a Santa Claus who presented each child with a present.

This year’s honoree at the event was Chet Szarejko, a well-deserved honor as Chet works hard to promote Polish interests. There was Polish food and young and old alike wound up the evening by dancing.

Liu also dropped by to wish everyone a Happy New Year. It was John’s birthday, which was celebrated twice: first at Debbie’s with cupcakes and lit candles and second at the Polonaise Terrace with a bouquet of roses.

Two hot Republican news flashes:

1. Rumor has it Estelle Cooper is retiring from the city Parks Department and plans to start a large consulting business in Whitestone.

2. The other Queens GOP event was a rather lengthy article on Page 4 in the Sunday New York Post with the headline “‘Extort’ slap at GOP’s Queens kingmakers,” in which City Councilman Eric Ulrich was demanding an investigation into claims that Queens GOP leaders milked candidates “for financial gain.”

Reader Feedback

Carmine says:
Next time you better invite Alfredo from Malba Gardens or is it that all you leaders are afraid of me because he is being somewhat of a thorn and keeps the heat on?
Feb. 19, 2012, 3:59 pm

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