President’s Message – March 2023

Spring is almost here. January seemed like it had 49 days in it, and February went by pretty fast, and now we are in March. St Paddy’s Day will be here soon, Lacrosse and Baseball have already started, and we had our snowfall for the last days of February. Before you know it, we will have the Chamber’s Community Street Festival, and it will be summer.

Many big events are happening this spring. The Chamber will be participating in two fundraising walks at Marjorie Post Park – one for the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society and the other for the Alzheimer’s Disease Resource Center. These will be great events for you to showcase your business and help some worthwhile causes. We will also be sponsoring a Taste of the Town event with local restaurants (and we have some of the best right here in the Massapequas!) This will serve as a fundraiser for the Massapequa Philharmonic Orchestra. The Chamber and many of our members are also sponsoring a free lifejacket giveaway for children at John J. Burns Park.

I want to take this time to highlight that this is the 75th year of the Chamber of Commerce of the Massapequas. Because of the great leadership that I have followed, and the teamwork of our Chamber members and Board, we have not only survived 75 years – including the COVID shutdown – but we have thrived and exceeded over 250 members. In this 75th year and beyond, we will continue to provide first-class education to local businesses, networking opportunities to meet potential referral partners, and ways for you to show off your business to the public.

This milestone wouldn’t have happened without the continued dedication of our Past Presidents – many of whom have stayed on our Board to ensure that their passion for giving back to the community and helping fellow business owners continues. Our Past Presidents who are still active on the Board include Robert R. Barrett, Denis Monette, Gary Slavin, Anthony Ventiera, Keith Wilson – and the unstoppable Patricia Orzano.

Patty is the heart and soul of the Chamber. For those of you who don’t know Patty, she owned the 7-Eleven on Merrick Road in Massapequa for over 30 years with her late husband Richard. She is our historian, chief fundraiser, and the Chamber mom. Patty makes sure that the Chamber stays true to our mission, gives back to the community, and keeps our traditions alive while we adapt to the modern world.

It is people like Patty who keep our community looking nice, with the many beautification projects that she helps lead as part of her many roles in our Chamber. The banners that you see on the telephone poles throughout Massapequa were her idea, and she has maintained them over the years, and takes responsibility for the fundraising to make sure they are in good condition and then changed out for the holiday season.

Every year, Patty leads a dedicated team of volunteers to make sure our Christmas Tree and Menorah Lighting Ceremony is funded. She also heads up the Toys for Tots Drive which is one of the largest on Long Island in cooperation with the 7-Eleven franchisees and company. Patty was named the Grand Marshal of the 2022 Massapequa Street Festival based on her outstanding contributions to this community, and the countless hours she volunteers to the Chamber and other organizations because of her love for the Massapequas.

This message is dedicated to her, as she continues to fight her battle with cancer, while still doing all of these things mentioned above. We are always looking for more people to help with any of these projects, and you don’t have to be a Board Member to serve. The reward of giving back to the community will be very fulfilling, and if Patty can do all of this while she is fighting the battle of her life – I hope we can get a few people to give up a few hours of their month to give her a hand.

Robert Zabbia, President
Massapequa Chamber of Commerce