For 60 years, Ivy Golden called East Hills home. A native of Brooklyn, Golden moved to the village in 1959 and along with her husband, Paul, raised four children, three boys and a girl. As important, Golden was a cultural force in the village, organizing a sculpturing class given by the renowned artist, George Gach.
Golden, who died in 2014, was fondly remembered by the over 30 family and friends who attended the tree planting ceremony.
“Ivy was proud to live here and the gift of the tree will always be appreciated, not only because it is a welcome addition to the Park, but becomes it comes from such a fine person who was so highly regarded by all,” said Deputy Mayor Manny Zuckerman.
“Ivy loved the senior programs, including book club, trips and dinners,” Zuckerman continued. “We will all miss her exuberance. She had a certain eloquence. She was refined and distinguished.”
Ellen Golden, Ivy’s daughter, also spoke at the ceremony.
“Her artistic talents were natural,” Ellen Golden said. “She was born with this remarkable and gifted ability.”
Ellen Golden thanked Mayor Michael R. Koblenz and the village board for “working so hard to provide her mother and her family with such outstanding facilities and programs at this remarkable venue. [My parents] fell in love with East Hills some 60 years ago, and their love affair with this community grew stronger every year.”
The tree, Ellen Golden related, was originally a seedling given to Ivy Golden as a Mother’s Day gift. Over the years, the tree grew from a potted plant on the Golden’s deck to a place in their backyard. When the house was sold, family members agreed to donate the tree to The Park At East Hills, a place where their mother spent many enjoyable hours both swimming and taking part in Senior Activities Committee programs.
A native of Brooklyn and a graduate of City College, Golden’s artistic abilities were evident early on. When she was 14, a teacher, Ellen Golden said, send a letter to Ivy’s mother accusing her daughter of tracing an art assignment, when, in fact, the work was from the teenager’s own hand. Golden used that artistic ability to assist the family business, a scenic design studio that later evolved into a theatrical supply company. That business was started by Ivy’s father-in-law and grew significantly in the 1940s and ‘50s by specializing in producing the ornate draperies that once adorned the great movie palaces of decades past. Even after her husband’s death in 2001, Golden was able to keep the family business running for several more years.
In the 1970s, Golden’s artistic interests turned to sculpturing and then, painting. At a charity event, she was introduced to George Gach, the accomplished Hungarian-born sculptor and Roslyn Heights resident. Gach agreed to teach a sculpturing class if Golden could drum up at least 10 students. That she did and for the next 30 years, Gach taught sculpturing classes from the basement of the Golden’s residence. In time, the students had honed their craft to the point where their creations were being shown at venues in East Hills and throughout Nassau County.
After Gach’s death, Golden continued to sculpt and eventually took up painting, while attending one of the Roslyn School District’s adult education classes. Pictured in this article are some of Golden’s favorite paintings.
“I’m biased, but I know everyone you speak to will tell you the same thing: [My mother] was one of the most compassionate, kind, talented, humble, vibrant woman in this community—and way beyond this community,” Ellen Golden said.