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Mineola Community Center Open as Overnight Refuge

Village residents without power can use center overnight for power and heat.

With many Mineola residents still without power more than a week after Hurricane Sandy and with the Nor’Easter dropping temperatures, the village is opening up its community center for those who wish to come in and spend the night.

Beginning Wednesday night at 10 p.m., Mayor Scott Strauss ordered that the community center be opened as a “place where residents can come and get out of the cold.”

At least 643 residents without power in Mineola as of Friday morning according to LIPA estimates.

“I can’t call it a shelter because we don’t have the facilities,” Strauss said during the regular meeting of the village board on November 7 at the village hall. “I ask any resident that you might know or any senior citizen who needs to get out of the cold to come here.”

The center would be open overnight from 10 p.m. to 6 p.m. on a daily basis for however long is necessary, but residents would need to bring their own supplies as they do not have any available supplies at the community center.

“It’s never been designed as a shelter and we can’t do that right now but we can certainly get our residents out of the cold,” Strauss said.

The mayor also advised residents to have a “Go Kit,” which is a bag containing necessary supplies for persons to take with them should the need to leave or a disaster arise.

“I’m not saying go back to the fifties and the sixties where we had bomb shelters in our basements, but we need to have a couple of days supplies of food and water should the unfortunate thing happen, a transistor radio,” he said, pointing to the village website which contains the same information from the Red Cross. “It’s a very, very informative information that we all should adhere to and have ready and have plans; planning is key here.”

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