Vegas came to the last week.
It's wasn't exactly sin city, but what happens in East Meadow, stays in East Meadow. On Friday, what was happening was Casino Fun Night, hosted by EMFD and organized by the .
The firehouse was transformed into a Vegas-style casino, complete with blackjack, craps and roulette tables. Grab a seat, buy some chips, and place your bets. $65 gets you $300 worth of "fun money."
"Proceeds benefit ongoing beautification of East Meadow," said COC past president Chris Hackert. "We have the East Meadow town square at the Veterans Memorial Park. A lot of the money goes to the upkeep of that, the gazebo, the plantings, and other projects."
It's a worthy "gamble," and players did just that. Even though the money won wasn't real, the end result was, as winnings were converted into raffle tickets, with a chance to win everything from an LCD TV and Yankee tickets to gift baskets and certificates donated by local merchants.
, and were among those offering prizes to be won, though much like Vegas, everyone won at the buffet, which was included in the admission fee.
Keeping East Meadow looking spiffy is a year-round effort, and benefits residents in more ways than one, according to Hackert.
"We think it's important for the property values, for the business values ... [town square] is a great place. We do our holiday lighting there, our wreath ceremonies for Memorial Day, it's a nice town square but expensive to keep up," he said.
The event was about pitching in for beautification by playing a little blackjack or Texas Hold'em.
"I'm doing good, I'm up one chip and only have been here a few minutes," said Liz Casella of New Hyde Park during a game of craps.
Hackert says the best part of Casino Fun Night is the camaraderie, as folks come together to gamble for fun and for the betterment of the town.
"It's a great way for people to get to know their neighbors, you'll see people from the schools here, local politicians, so it's nice for everybody to get together and work on a common goal," he said.
First East Meadow, next stop, Vegas (or perhaps a stopover in Atlantic City first.)