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by Staff Writer / New York Islanders

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Sean and Ed O’Neil, Shawn Blessinger, Lorne Friedman and Sterling Barrett meet Mike Bossy (Photo by Mike Stobe/ Getty Images)
Wednesday night marked the first night of the new and improved Islanders Business Club. With Year One over, the Islanders made it their mission to make the IBC even better for the second year. If Wednesday's event was any indication of things to come then members will be in store for an incredible opportunity.

With the Nassau Coliseum Expo Hall decked out in fancy décor and fashioned with food and games there was something for everyone at the Islanders Business Club Open House. Guests who took advantage of this open invitation were treated to complimentary food, drinks and three hours of entertainment and conversation.

"I'm very excited about the new Islanders Business Club," said Art Desin of The Workplace Group. "I never expected to see anything like this. It's been great and I'm impressed with how everything has been set up so far."

Executive Director of the Islanders Business Club Mike Bossy welcomed everyone to the event and then handed the microphone over to GM Garth Snow, who laid out the teams’s future plans. His speech was followed by magician and illusionist Wayne Hoffman, who wowed the audience with his thrilling performance. Throughout the evening, Jill Gioia graced the stage with her soulful voice.

Mark Schwartz poses with Clark Gillies (Photo by Mike Stobe/ Getty Images)
Among the other guests in attendance were Islanders legends Bob Nystrom and Clark Gillies, along with head coach Ted Nolan, Eric Cairns, Mike Sillinger and Kyle Okposo.

Prior to the Open House, current IBC members were invited to the first Islanders Partnership Summit. There, Islanders executives discussed their plans on the media, community and marketing side for the upcoming 2008-09 season. Guests were broken down into three groups for more personal settings with department heads from the media, marketing and sales staffs. The summit also included an informative talk by guest speaker Jack Birch of Velocity Sports.

Owner Charles Wang addressed the Open House guests about the Lighthouse Project, the future of the Nassau Coliseum.

There was not a face in the crowd who was not beaming while talking business and casually with their contemporaries. Wednesday was only a taste of what's to come for members of the Islanders Business Club for the 2008-09 season.

Mike Gianchetta and James Haas with Sillinger and Okposo (Photo by Mike Stobe/ Getty Images)
"The Islanders organization has been a fabulous organization for many years," said attorney Allan Pullin. "It does wonderful things for the community and I wanted to get more involved with the organization. I'm absolutely amazed at how high-class an event this was. It's typical of what the Islanders do. I'm very happy to become affiliated with them."

The Islanders are already anticipating a sharp increase in IBC membership and are limiting the number of members to 1,000. For more information about the Islanders Business Club or to request an IBC application, please call Executive Director Mike Bossy at 1-866-96-NYICE or e-mail

You can also check out the Islanders Business Club website at

Additional reporting by John Hill
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