Bayview Civic partners with Rotary International for Children’s Holiday Spectacular

Bayview Civic partners with Rotary International for Children’s Holiday Spectacular
The Bayview Civic Association is partnering with Manhasset's Rotary International for the 22nd annual Manhasset Children's Holiday Spectacular. (Photo courtesy of John Minogue)

A beloved holiday tradition returns this month to bring the Christmas spirit to hundreds of local children at the 22nd annual Manhasset Children’s Holiday Spectacular.

The event, created by Bayview Civic Association founder John Minogue, started more than two decades ago to jump start the holiday season with a children’s movie, visits with Santa Claus, a food pantry drive and gifts for all the girls and boys, event organizer Eric Monroe said.

This year’s Children’s Holiday Spectacular is set for 9 a.m. Dec. 23 at Bow Tie Cinema on Plandome Road in Manhasset. Tickets are $3 and will be sold at various businesses around Manhasset.

The theater seats 525, and Monroe said he hopes to fill every seat. In previous years, the event has drawn upwards of 300 children to view a new DVD release, have photos with Santa and choose an unwrapped gift to take home.

Monroe said the gifts are distributed one by one after the movie, and his favorite part of the day is watching each child pick their present.

“The kids faces light up and they come running down the aisle,” Monroe said.

Monroe said the event is usually a break-even affair, with funds from ticket sales as well as donations from local businesses to rent the theater and provide gifts for the children. This year, however, Bayview Civic Association is partnering with Rotary International to use the event also as a fundraiser for the community.

Monroe said sponsorships are available for the event this year, and all proceeds will be split between Rotary International, through the Manhasset Rotary Club and President Robbie Donno, and the Manhasset Community Fund, which donates to a handful of local organizations.

“Giving money back to the community in addition to this great tradition I think is where the next phase of this will go,” Monroe said.

Monroe said they will also continue the tradition of collecting food for a local food pantry, which has typically been Island Harvest in past years.

For more information or to sponsor the event, email Monroe at [email protected].

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