On May 24, 1668, three families — early settlers of Long Island’s North Shore — purchased a parcel of land from the Matinecock Chieftaincy. They called the land Musquito Cove, based on the Algonquin word for “place of rushes.”
Three-hundred fifty years later, after two years of planning and fundraising, a celebration of all that has since transpired on that land kicked off on May 23, with the opening of the Heritage Garden at Mill Pond, next to the city firehouse on Glen Cove Avenue.
“The garden will serve as a reminder of the pride the Glen Cove residents have in their community,” Mayor Tim Tenke said at the ceremonial ribbon cutting, “and it will endure for generations to come.”
At the center of the garden is a circular granite monument bearing the year of Glen Cove’s founding and the date of the anniversary. “It’s gorgeous,” said Lauren Wasserfall, the Beautification Commission volunteer who designed the monument, adding, “Much more than I expected.”
Wasserfall said she chose the bright blue text and gold foil wreath because the colors “pop” against the gray granite. She worked with her neighbor Joseph Graziose, of RXR Realty, and Studio Grella Design over the past year to turn her sketch into a reality.
Barbara Peebles, a GC350 Advisory Board member, told the Herald Gazette that Glen Cove residents “really came together” to celebrate the city’s anniversary. “The pride that people have in Glen Cove is so evident,” Peebles said, “and all the volunteers put in so much hard work. That’s what Glen Cove is all about: everyone coming together.”
The day after the ribbon cutting, hundreds of people gathered in Morgan Park for evening picnics, live music and a celebration of the oldest families in the city, some of whom — like the Coles — can trace their ancestry back to the original founders. Food trucks lined the path at the top of the hill, and children ran around playing tag or soccer or simply rolling down parts of the slope. The Glen Cove School District’s musical groups performed in the amphitheater.
“If you build it,” Jacki Yonick, chairwoman of the GC350 Special Events Committee, said of the turnout, “they will come.”
On Friday, the city hosted an Old Timers Base Ball Game, played without gloves and using lighter bats, as 19th-century players did. The Brooklyn Atlantics Base Ball Club of Smithtown prevailed 17-6 over the New York Mutual Base Ball Club of Suffolk in one of their Mid-Atlantic Vintage Base Ball League games at the John Maccarone Memorial Stadium. The ceremonial first pitches were thrown by former Glen Cove High School varsity baseball coaches Sal Travatello and Jon Dolecki. The Glen Cove Senior Center’s Golden Voices Choir provided the seventh-inning-stretch entertainment.