On September 7, 2013, residents Frank Gonzalez and Jennifer were married at the Community Center. The ceremony was performed by former Delaware Water Gap Mayor Frank Brown and attended by the couple’s four children and a few family friends. Frank and Jenn met on Staten Island in 1992 and dated on and off for about three years before losing touch for more than 16 years. They were introduced to each other by their mutual friend Cass, and it was through his Facebook page that they reconnected. They reunited and Frank moved in with Jenn and her 3 children in Long Island.
Frank and Jenn both enjoy drinking Jack Daniels, so it was on a trip to the Jack Daniels Distillery in Lynchburg, Tennessee that Frank proposed marriage. They were in the private Tennessee Squire room at the distillery, along with master distiller, Jeff Arnett, when Frank dropped to one knee and produced Jenn’s grandmother’s ring to seal the deal.
About two months later, and only days after finding out that Jenn was pregnant with what would be her 4th child and Frank’s first, Hurricane Sandy caused so much damage to the home they were renting that the landlord refused to make the repairs. Coupled with the fact that Frank was a first responder during the September 11, 2001 attacks in New York, they decided it was time to leave New York for good. In February 2013 they began shopping for a place to live in our area. On Easter Sunday, Frank and a very pregnant Jenn brought their children and pets and moved into Emerald Lakes.
Once they were settled in, and after Jenn gave birth to Gunner, they began planning their wedding at the ELA Community Center. The ceremony was witnessed by Cass and his wife Melanie who, interestingly, were introduced by Jenn many years back. Also attending were Jenn and Frank’s children; Maverick, Leilani, Hunter and Gunner. So, we here at ELFP would like to extend our best wishes for a long and happy marriage and a big welcome to the community to our neighbors and newlyweds, Francisco and Jennifer Gonzalez.
We went to the Community Center on Saturday to see Comedy Night 4, hosted by our own Buz Whelan and featuring
Host Buz Whelan started things off, giving the audience a chance to decide on which of three levels of comedy they wanted from mild to hot. Not surprisingly, the vote for hot was near unanimous. After making a generous offer to test any suspected drugs for parents and doing about 10 minutes of material to get the audience warmed up and laughing he introduced his first comic, a surprise addition to the night’s lineup.
The bonus act was former cop and high school social studies teacher, Jeffrey Paul, a relative newcomer to the NYC comedy circuit. He left his teaching job in Staten Island to hit the stage in Manhattan where he swiftly made a name for himself in many of the city’s most renowned venues, including Stand-Up NY and the New York Comedy Club. His delivery and life stories got the crowd started quickly, and we all roared when he described his son’s reaction to his philosophical questions. Jeffrey Paul was a wonderful surprise addition to this evening’s line-up, and we look forward to hearing more from this rising star.
Next up was our old friend Tommy Gooch, who has graced our stage before. This comedy veteran’s talent for playing with the
audience led us to some really hilarious moments. Warning – don’t ever let Tommy catch you texting at his show; you may as well paint a target on your forehead. And when our server scurried across the front of the stage to retrieve some empty glasses, he pulled her right up in front of us all and made her part of the act. The Gooch is a very busy comedian, with dates all over the Northeast in the coming months, and Emerald Lakes is very lucky to have him return year after year, and we certainly hope to see him again next year.
The headline act of Comedy Night 4 was Johnny Watson. You may have seen Johnny on Saturday Night Live, David Letterman, or Comedy Central. Johnny describes himself as what it would look like if Clay Aiken
banged Jon Bon Jovi and, from the laughter, it was clear the audience agreed. In between dispensing advice about selecting a wife and reminiscing about candy cigarettes, Johnny had a turn at the audience too, finding ways to poke fun at the audience members and keep us all laughing. Check out Johnny’s radio comedy show, Watson N Watson, in which he battles with his mother on all sorts of topics.
Buz Whelan, “it’s okay to like me now, I am not on the board anymore.” And he asked if we thought this
was more fun than an annual meeting. It certainly was, and I think there were more people there than at some of our annual meetings, too. Thanks to Buz for all he did to organize and bring this event to our community; I look forward to next year.