Letter to the Editor: The following is an original letter sent to Patch by Mark Larson of the Miller Place Friends of the Arts.
The Miller Place Friends of the Arts, along with MPHS Student Government, hosted the 8th annual Ice Cream Social on June 2, 2012, and this time we cranked up the fun and fund-raising with the help of Ford and Ramp Ford and added the "DriveOne 4UR School" program to the mix. Over 200 people test drove the shiny new Fords parked in the high school lot which generated donations of $20 each from Ford. We also had over 40 items in our collection of raffle baskets. With everyone's help we raised over $5,000 to help fund the music and arts programs in Miller Place.
We wish to specifically thank the following people and firms who supported us so generously in putting on this event:
Wayne Rampone, Jr. and his staff at Ramp Ford , Gail & Jim McNulty of McNulty's Ice Cream Parlor, Frank Magnotta and Marcello Serrao of Ralph’s Famous Italian Ices, Cliff Korade and Sayville Ford for the donation of the Ducks tickets and luxury suite, Newby Neon, Sav-On Printing, Brian's Aquarium, Stop & Shop, Party Hardy, Wavecrest Portrait Studio, Sears Hardware and Lowes of Medford.
We also wish to thank the principals, teachers, Board of Education, administrators and staff of the Miller Place School District, with special thanks going to the music and art faculty, as well as the high school custodial, security and kitchen staffs.
We also wish to thank the numerous parents, students and alumni who helped register drivers, solicit and put together raffle baskets, scoop, sell raffle tickets and collect money and clean up afterwards.
Several hundred people showed up to take some new Fords for a (profitable, for us) test drive, have a good time listening to our talented student musicians and vocalists and socialize with their neighbors -- all while eating delicious McNulty’s ice cream and Ralph’s ices. We are looking forward to next year when we do it all again.
As always, the Ice Cream Social events are dedicated to the memory of our friend Jim Rakowski. He was not only a dedicated teacher to thousands of Miller Place music students over three decades but he was also a mentor and inspiration to so many of them. Years ago he brought the idea for an ice cream social to a group of music parents, and from there the Miller Place Friends of the Arts began. Mr. Rakowski will always be remembered fondly in Miller Place and Sound Beach. His motto lives on: “One Band, One Sound”.
-Mark Larson for the Miller Place Friends of the Arts