A Tradition of Excellence since 1657

Huntington School Briefs

The Huntington Blue Devil marching band captured first place in its seven-team Large School 3 division at the New York State Field Band Conference competition this past Sunday at Copiague High School.

The Blue Devils notched a score of 73.0, comfortably ahead of runner-up Sachem, which scored 72.05. Huntington Director of Fine and Performing Arts Joan R. Fretz called the point gap between the No. 1 and No. 2 bands a "commendable spread" and said the victory was a "great acknowledgement for our kids. We're back!"

Dr. Leonardi's Award

Huntington High School Principal Dr. Carmela Leonardi will be presented with a Community Service Award by the Town of Huntington Hispanic Task Force at the town's annual Hispanic heritage celebration program on Friday, October 14 at 7 p.m. at Town Hall.

The award will be presented by Supervisor Frank P. Petrone. The evening will include a keynote speaker, food and refreshments and entertainment. "I am honored to receive this award," Dr. Leonardi said.

Tri-M Student Leaders

This year's Tri-M music honor society chapter at Huntington High School is led by officers Matthew Petryk (president), Collin Richardson (vice-president), Melanie Grossman (secretary), Francesca Grey (treasurer) and Adelia Witt (historian).

Tri-M's faculty advisor is high school choral director and music teacher Veronica Mainville. She obtained an undergraduate degree at SUNY College at Potsdam's Crane School of Music and is studying for a master's degree at Boston University.

Washington Harvest Hoedown

The Washington Primary School PTA is holding its second annual Harvest Hoedown on Friday, October 14 from 5:30-7:30 p.m., rain or shrine. There will be fun, food, treats, prizes, games, activities, music, dancing, costumed characters and an assortment of surprises for the whole family.

Contact Washington parent and even organizer Michelle Deegan at 423-4965 or deegan321@yahoo.com for more information.

Finley Yearbook Outlook

J. Taylor Finley Middle School teacher Krista Fee is serving as this year's yearbook advisor at the school. The 2012 edition will feature 55 pages with color photographs. The yearbook can be purchased for $30 if ordered by December 12. After that date, the price is $35. For more information contact Ms. Fee at kfee@hufsd.edu.

Award for Huntington Coach Prez

Huntington Coach Corp. President Kevin J. Clifford has been named National School Bus Contractor of the Year by School Bus Fleet magazine. The award was presented at the National School Transportation Assn. annual meeting in Baltimore, Maryland.

Huntington Coach Corp. has been the Huntington School District's bus carrier for decades. Mr. Clifford was honored for his "outstanding ability in improving the operations and management of his own company while at the same time making significant contributions to promoting contracting at both the national and state levels."

Mr. Clifford has been involved in school bus transportation for more than 50 years. He is a graduate of Mount Saint Mary's College and served a stint in the U.S. Marine Corps. He became Huntington Coach Corp. president in 1995 and has seen the company grow from 100 vehicles to more than 900 today.

Kitty R. Klein Reports

Kitty R. Klein, the Huntington School District's director of guidance, reports there are currently 337 colleges in NCAA Division I, 290 in Division II and 435 in Division III. She shared the 2011/12 NCAA Student-Athlete Guide with members of the guidance department.

Huntington Alum Nicole Russo Passes Away

Nicole Therese Russo, a member of Huntington High School's Class of 1994 passed away suddenly on September 19. She was only 35 years old. Her friends, classmates and former teachers were shocked and saddened.

Ms. Russo picked up her high school diploma at Huntington's 133rd annual commencement on Sunday afternoon, June 26, 1994. The mistress of ceremonies that day was Jaime Palmiotti. Brian Bentley and Christina Schlaikjer carried the flags. Ms. Palmiotti sang the Star-Spangled Banner.

Valedictorian Joshua Ardise and Salutatorian William Hart gave keynote addresses as Ms. Russo and her classmates listened. Senior Class President Kamyce Davis presented the class gift to the school. Superintendent Dr. Judith Pastel and Principal Mary Lou Griffin also spoke to the large crowd that filled the athletic field bleachers.

Ms. Russo was a popular student with many friends. She had a spring in her step. As word of her passing spread around the district and town, there was a large degree of disbelief. A funeral Mass was offered last Friday at St. Patrick's Church on Main Street.

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