On Thursday, July 14th, 2005 at 5:30 PM, St. John’s had the official Ribbon Cutting ceremony for our new play yard on Beach 110th Street.

The yard has been completely resurfaced and sports a brightly painted basketball court, softball field, and dodge ball area.

Staff and boys as well as representatives from St. John’s Board of Directors, Community Advisory Council, the Rockaway Rotary, St. John’s Alumni and friends and supporters were present for this exciting occasion.

Brother Tom Trager, S.M., Executive Director of St. John’s, welcomed the guests; and Father Paul Landolfi, S.M., Director of the Alumni Association (and an alumnus himself) blessed the yard.

The full basketball court was dedicated as a memorial to Jimmy Geyer, a resident of Rockville Centre and good friend of St. John’s. Jimmy was a victim of the 9/11 tragedy. Jimmy’s neighbors, Danise and Richie Longworth, knowing of his love for St. John’s and the boys, suggested sending support to the Home. That initiative developed into a fund that was directed to the basketball court dedication. Jimmy Geyer’s three children, Michelle, Matthew and Laura, cut the ribbon.

Brother Tom announced that several other areas of the play yard are available for special dedications and memorials. He invited the guests to consider this option either for someone they know or for others who deserve to be honored or remembered.

Brother Tom invited the guests and staff to enjoy some refreshments while they watched an exciting and close game of basketball between staff and residents. The residents were jubilant at their victory over staff, 62 to 58.

St. John’s is grateful to the friends and benefactors who have helped make the new yard possible.

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