Volunteers traveling from states like Kentucky, North Carolina and Michigan to aid in the wake of Hurricane Sandy have been staying in Glendale, and members of the Glendale Civic Association have been trying to make their stay as comfortable as possible.
“The whole thing kind of snowballed,” said Kathy Masi, president of the Glendale Civic Association, who has been busy coordinating food for volunteers.
The civic has been working in conjunction with the Queens Bible Church, where the volunteers have been staying.
“They’ve really done a lot,” Masi said of the church, as well as everyone in Glendale that has been chipping in to help out.
The Glendale Civic Association has also been spreading the word about giving time and donations, and in turn people are doing a great deal to help those helping out.
Just this week, volunteers from Michigan and North Carolina were served an Italian dinner, compliments of Assemblyman Mike Miller and Grace’s Pizza on Myrtle Ave., one of the many restaurants supplying visitors with food.
Yerman’s Irish Pub, a local restaurant on 88th Street in Glendale, has been keeping volunteers full on shepherd’s pie and turkey and stuffing.
“Helping out makes you feel good,” said Jimmy O'Reily, a native of Ireland, and the owner of the pub for the past 28 years. O'Reily, who has also been helping to give donations of food and other items to hard-hit areas of the boroughs, said he would continue to help out as long as needed. “It's been tough on people, and we just gotta keep doing it.”
Rob Schohmig of The Avenue Restaurant said he and staff have been helping contribute trays of string beans, baked potatoes and other food to help feed volunteers.
In conjunction with helping out visiting volunteers, Schohmig said that the Glendale eatery also dropped off food for victims of Sandy in the Rockaways.
“We basically help all those that need help,” Schohmig said. “It’s been a really tough time for everyone, and it's just what you do.”
Besides storeowners and officials, community members were also eager to show support for visiting volunteers.
Jason Rubenstein, a local resident and a member of the civic, donated approximately 10 turkey dinners for Thanksgiving.
“I just thought, 'you know what. I can afford this,’” he said. “Why not?'”
Masi said she was ecstatic with the way the Glendale community has responded. “It’s really a great thing,” she said.