No. 319: Attack of the ladybugs, rise of the Northport Hotel and how to enjoy a (really) long weekend, courtesy of Smirnoff

Love a man in uniform: The Love Boat's yeoman purser (and former Iowa Congressman) Fred Grandy turns 70 today.

Yeah, baby: Marinate those sirloin tips and grab yourself a frosty one, dear readers – you’ve made it to the precipice of another glorious weekend, this leading into a blessed holiday week (and for a fortunate few, a rare and precious five-day weekend).

To wit: British beverage baron Smirnoff, suggesting it’s “un-American” for the Fourth of July to fall on a Wednesday, is paying people to take off July 2 and 3 and make it a proper five-day holiday. True story.

It’s June 29 out there: Just a regular old Friday here in America, but a biggie in the La Rioja region of northern Spain, where the Haro Wine Festival – including the hot, sticky and high-spirited “Battle of the Wine” – is already making a mess of things.

And to our readers in the Netherlands, a very happy Veterans’ Day.

It literally brought down the house: London’s original Globe Theatre, known primarily as William Shakespeare’s personal playhouse, burned down on this date in 1613, during a performance of The Bard’s “Henry VIII.”

And you thought Trump didn’t study history: It was June 29, 1767, when the British passed the first of the Townshend Revenue Acts, levying brutish tariffs on the colonies to recoup trade losses (this led directly to war, for those keeping score).

On the same date in 1900, the Imperial Chinese Court essentially declared war on all foreigners in China, blaming them for the ills of Chinese society and giving the Boxers – a.k.a. the Yihequan, or “Righteous and Harmonious Fists” – free rein to swing away.

Play it again, George: The first known musical recording occurred on this date in 1888, when George Frideric Handel’s oratorio “Israel in Egypt” was imprinted on a paraffin cylinder.

Paradise found: The Bird of Paradise, a three-engine Atlantic-Fokker C-2 in the service of the U.S. Army Air Corps, completed the first-ever transpacific flight – connecting the U.S. mainland and Hawaii – on June 29, 1927.

Over Kill: The Outerbridge Crossing and the original Goethals Bridge, each spanning the Arthur Kill strait to connect Staten Island and New Jersey, both opened on June 29, 1928.

Strange but true: The Outerbridge Crossing was not so named because it was an outer bridge; it was actually named for Staten Island resident Eugenius Harvey Outerbridge, first chairman of the then-Port of New York Authority.

Speaking of which: George Washington Goethals (1858-1928) – chief engineer of the Panama Canal construction project, the first-even consulting engineer for the Port of New York Authority and namesake of the Goethals Bridge – would turn 170 today.

Also marking birthdays this June 29 are pioneering British electronics engineer Alan Blumlein (1903-1942), who racked up some 128 patents (many concerning sound recording) before passing away at age 38; Louis Burton Lindley Jr. (1919-1983), known better by stage name Slim Pickens and known best for riding a nuclear bomb in “Dr. Strangelove”; and pop singer “Little” Eva Boyd (1943-2003), forever doing the “Locomotion.”

It floats back to you: And take a bow, Fred Grandy – “The Love Boat’s” loveable Gopher (and former Iowa congressman) turns 70 today.

Wish them all well at, but save the presents for us – story tips, calendar suggestions and general socioeconomic discourse always appreciated.

Holiday schedule: Before we wrap up this busy week in innovation, a quick note about next week – whether or not we win that Smirnoff thing, Innovate LI is due for some website maintenance and such, so look for your regularly scheduled calendar newsletter on Monday, and after that we’ll catch up with you again July 5.

Happy birthday, USA. Please celebrate responsibly.


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The new train to the plane: Albany has significantly moved the ball in the longstanding effort to construct a new AirTrain connection to LaGuardia Airport, with Gov. Andrew Cuomo signing legislation this week that will make “multiple potential alignments” eligible for consideration.

The potential routes will be considered during an upcoming environmental review of the proposed AirTrain LGA project, which would place a new train-to-the-plane between the busy Queens airport and the Mets-Willets Point Long Island Rail Road Station in Flushing (also the site of a No. 7 subway train stop).

The ultimate plan, according to the governor’s office, is “a mass-transit link between Manhattan and LaGuardia,” considered a vital step in reducing congestion on regional roadways – and an “example of comprehensive transit infrastructure for the rest of the nation [that] will pay dividends for decades,” Cuomo said this week.

Beach front: It won’t help with this big beach weekend, but the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has announced plans to award $311,000 to the New York State Department of Health for the protection of beaches and coastal waters.

The funds – contingent on the number of national applicants, the availability of funding (translation: the potential for further Trump Administration cuts to the EPA budget) and other factors – should arrive in time for the 2019 bathing season, according to a statement from the EPA. When they do, they’ll be spread among water-monitoring and notification programs focused on Long Island’s coastline, according to the EPA, as well as Empire State beaches along Lake Ontario and Lake Erie.



Lady killers: Adelphi University is once again calling on an army of ravenous ladybugs to do battle with tiny pests threatening the foliage gracing the school’s picturesque campus.

Inn style: A Suffolk County IDA tax-abatement package will help developers construct a new 25,000-square-foot boutique hotel in downtown Northport (extra parking, too).

A walk in the Park: Still glowing from a big FY2018, Melville manufacturer Park Electrochemical Corp has kicked off its new fiscal year in grand style.



They’re feeling hot, hot, hot at Calverton’s PeKANT Tea Co., a Hauppauge naval-warfare specialist is ready for a fight and researchers both young and old are rocking at SBU.



Mixing it up: From Forbes, why diversity is a must when assembling your corporate innovation team.

Anybody here speak COBOL? The world is running out of programmers who understand the computer language still used by most global banks.

Art of the matter: Newsday breaks down the enormous economic impact of Long Island’s arts and cultural organizations.

Keep it going: Like this newsletter? So do we. Help us keep the good times rolling by sharing this with as many innovation-minded folks as you can – and please encourage them to subscribe for free.



+ Lou Mastrianni has been hired as Northeast middle-market manager at Capital One in Manhattan. He was a managing director, Long Island/Queens manager and national head of apparel middle-market banking at JPMorgan Chase Bank in Manhattan.

+ Melville-based H2M architects + engineers has announced six promotions: James Roberts, formerly director of strategic growth and development, is now vice president and water/wastewater market director; James Neri, formerly deputy director of water, is now vice president of water resources; Christopher Weiss, formerly manager of wastewater treatment systems, is now wastewater vice president and director; Joseph Manzella, formerly manager of mechanical engineering, is now also assistant vice president; William Rockensies, formerly director of municipal engineering, is now vice president and director of construction resources; and Jay Pisco, deputy market director of the municipal market, is now also vice president.

+ P.J. Forcino has been hired as chief operating officer at Garden City-based Moritt Hock & Hamroff. He was previously executive director at Garden City-based Meyer, Suozzi, English & Klein.

+ Kristiana Zuccarini has been hired as an associate in the Design Professional Group at Garden City-based L’Abbate, Balkan, Colavita & Contini. She was previously a legal assistant at Bruno, Gerbino & Soriano in Melville.

+ Rosalinde Casalini has been hired as an associate in the Employment/Labor and Insurance Fraud groups at Uniondale-based Rivkin Radler. She previously was a law clerk to Magistrate Judge Anne Shields, Eastern District of New York.

+ Amit Sondhi has been hired as a senior attorney at Hicksville-based Bergman, Bergman, Fields & Lamonsoff. He was formerly an attorney with Morgan Levine Dolan in Manhattan.

+ Molloy College in Rockville Centre has announced two additions to its board of trustees: John McEntee, commercial litigation partner at Uniondale-based Farrell Fritz, has been appointed chairperson, and Nicolette Fiore-Lopez, chief nursing officer at St. Charles Hospital in Port Jefferson, has been appointed as a board member.

+ Lauren Kanter-Lawrence, director of communications at Ronkonkoma-based Campolo, Middleton & McCormick, has been elected to the board of directors of Women Economic Developers of Long Island.



Retrofit for a Kings (County, that is): A Brooklyn renovation project is among the first to receive a contract under Albany’s $30 million RetrofitNY energy-efficiency program.

Go with the flow: From Google (via Travel + Leisure), how to avoid traffic jams on Independence Day.

Careful with that: Speaking of Independence Day, men suffer about 70 percent of all fireworks-related injuries, and other things you probably didn’t know about the Fourth of July.

One last thing: Try as we might, we still can’t nail down that elusive “free news.” So we’re still relying on the great firms that support Innovate LI, and we’re relying on you to support them – including Nixon Peabody, where the Long Island innovation economy is front and center.