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The Daily Plant : Wednesday, August 9, 2000

CENTRAL PARK GETS A HAMMER THROW RECORD


Photograph by Jamye (Focus) Ford

Commissioner Henry J. (StarQuest) Stern welcomed Olympic qualifier Dawn (Thrower) Ellerbe as she set the record for the Hammer Throw in Central Park yesterday. The hammer throw is a track and field sport in which a hammer is hurled for distance, using two hands within a throwing circle. The hammer, a ball made of solid iron or other metal, is attached to a handle of steel wire. Ellerbe threw the hammer at East Meadow yesterday and her distance now represents a record for Central Park since this is the first time the sporting event was held there.

Since 1866 the hammer throw has been a regular part of track and field competitions in Ireland, Scotland, and England. Legends trace the game to the Tailtean Games held in Ireland about 2000 BC, when the Celtic hero Cu Chulainn gripped a chariot wheel by its axle, whirled it around his head and threw it farther than did any other individual. The event, formerly only open to men, will open to women for the first time in Olympic competition at the games in Sydney, Austrailia.

Ellerbe, who competes for the New York Athletic Club, is a five-time champion at USA Indoors and five-time US Outdoors champion in the hammer throw. She also won the 1996 and 1997 NCAA hammer titles, two indoor NCAA titles, and was the 1999 Pan American Games champion. Ellerbe will join three other American women on the United States track and field team as they compete for Olympic gold this September. Ellerbe was also honored with a nom de parc at Tuesday's event. Based on her skill and throwing ability Commissioner Stern named her Thrower.

ASIAN LONGHORNED BEETLE FOUND IN EAST VILLAGE

The Asian Longhorned Beetle (ALB) was discovered in the East Village in two new locations. Two Norway Maple trees located at 111 East 10th Street were found to be infested with the ALB on Monday, August 7, and yesterday the beetles were found in two Norway Maples and two Horse Chestnut trees on St. Marks Church property at 234 East 11th Street. This comes just a few weeks after the last beetle sighting in Flushing Meadows Corona Park in Queens where three infested trees were removed, chipped, then burned to prevent the spread of the tree-killing beetle. The trees recently found in the Village will also be removed and destroyed. The ALB represents a serious threat to our city trees by borrowing holes into them and laying eggs which eat the tree from the inside out. Anyone suspecting an ALB infestation should call (800) 201-PARK.

THIRTEEN YEARS AGO IN THE PLANT
(Wednesday, August 12, 1987)

FREE NEW YORK KIDS ON STAGE PRODUCTION: "SUBWAY SHUFFLE" RIGHT ON TRACK

"New York Kids on Stage," Parks and Recreation's free theater program for youngsters ages 7-17, will perform an original musical written by staff and youngsters of the Bronx program, entitles "Subway Shuffle." The musical takes the audience on a fantasy ride on the Number four subway line (which runs through the Bronx) and presents a colorful array of typical New York City straphangers.

QUOTATION FOR THE DAY

"A worker may be the hammer's master, but the hammer still prevails. A tool knows exactly how it is meant to be handled, while the user of the tool can only have an approximate idea."

Milan Kundera (b. 1923)

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