VOLUME 25, NUMBER 25
wtc sPire comPlete P. 12
MAY 15-MAY 27, 2013
anger Builds as school waitlists linger BY JOSH ROGERS hese are our lives — these are our lives,” Jessica Whitney Gould told Dept. of Education officials Friday. She was hoping they’d get the sense of urgency she and Downtown parents are feeling waiting to find out where their 5-year-old children are going to go to school. “Our son lives in the dining alcove,” she said. “Why? Because we’re in a great neighborhood in a great school zone. Our lease is up.
Continued on page 6
Downtown Express photo by Milo Hess
Climbers were back May 11 for the reopening of the Pier 25 playground.
Several individuals and organizations threw parties and held events to raise money for the pier. One of the families that donated was the Basile family, and daughters Ava and Olivia took pictures beside their names on the plaque announcing the park’s reopening. “I miss the spiderweb,” said eight-year-old
BY KAI TLYN M EADE AND JOSH ROGERS he Taste of Tribeca chefs, like many of us, miss Grandma’s cooking. As a taste of Taste, we asked many of the chefs to talk about the dishes they’ll be serving this weekend, and for some of their cooking tips (read more chefs’ answers at downtownexpress.com). So keep an eye out for their tables, and toast to clear skies and fewer burned fingers.
Continued on page 16
Continued on page 21
Pier 25 playground rises back up BY KA I T LY N M E A D E flood poured into the park on Pier 25 Saturday as the gates to the playground opened for the first time since Superstorm Sandy’s surge destroyed it. The Tribeca pier welcomed families back to the newly refurbished playground, May 11 at an 11 a.m. ribbon cutting ceremony presided over by the Hudson River Park Trust and local officials.
“What’s really been great as I continued to watch the progress of [the playground] being built, every time I came down here, there were little noses pressed against the fence and mothers with their carriages, yearning,” said Madelyn Wils, president of the Hudson River Park Trust. “It really is not only the front door of the park but one of the few parks in the neighborhood.”
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May 15 - May 27, 2013
Lee on the Races
Chinatown leader Jan Lee has had his share of political fights with Margaret Chin over the years so we were surprised last week when he told us he hasn’t ruled out supporting her reelection bid to the City Council. “Margaret and I are certainly cordial,” he told us, saying their disagreements have always been about issues. Lee, a founder of the Civic Center Residents Coalition, fought against the creation of the Chinatown Business Improvement District, which Chin strongly supported. “We need to talk in a very candid way about the next four years on how she would improve,” Lee added. His biggest concern is neighbor-
hood traffic problems caused by several things including the security closure of Park Row. He said he has been dealing with family issues, but he hopes to be able to speak sometime soon with Chin and her Democratic primary opponent, Jenifer Rajkumar. He has flirted in the past with running himself, but said he definitely will not be on the ballot this year. In other races, Lee is backing Comptroller John Liu for mayor and Julie Menin for borough president. He praised Liu’s work exposing the CityTime scandal, and Menin’s effort helping to get the Khalid Sheikh Mohammed trial moved out of Lower Manhattan. “We really connected on that issue,” he said of Menin. “I find her to be a good problem solver and not just a complainer.”
Speaking of Councilmember Margaret Chin, we had been thinking she scheduled her announcement strategically around the time of Downtown Independent Democrats’ fundraiser in Battery Park City to lessen the chance of naysayers attending, but even Chin critic and D.I.D. veteran Sean Sweeney, who often ascribes ulterior motives to opponents, said there was nothing to the theory. Sweeney said Chin showed up to the fundraiser right after the announcement and “she gave more [of a donation] than
the average politician gave.” He did take a dig at Chin, pointing out she did not win the Coalition for a District Alternative endorsement that she won four years ago. CoDA voted not to endorse, but its most powerful member, Councilmember Rosie Mendez, is backing Chin. Chin’s campaign spokesperson, Austin Finan, laughed at the notion that Chin is weaker without CoDA. “Whatever makes them sleep at night,” he told us. He said in addition to support from Assembly Speaker Shelly Silver and Cong. Nydia Velazquez, Chin will be getting nods from most if not all of the local elected officials. “We’re stretching it out so to speak,” Finan said.
A last quick one on Margaret Chin. Amy Varghese has just joined her staff as the new communications director. She replaces Kelly Magee, who is now working in the press office at the Dept. of Buildings.
Rockwell, Imagination & Reality
We were recalling the hoopla that began five years ago when renowned local architect David Rockwell started talking about designing — at no cost — a new Downtown playground with professional playmates (Rated G of course), a k a “play associates,” to help
children interact with innovative, movable equipment. We paid a visit the other day with a 3-year-old source close to UnderCover to see how the promise of Imagination Playground was holding up three years after opening. The playmate at the Seaport park did not seem to do any sort of play facilitation, which seemed fine since perhaps it’s better for kids to, well, use their own imagination. Rockwell’s large and light building blocks are more than a nice touch, although creativity apparently extends only so far since we were told to bring one of them back to the approved block play area. Overall, the design puts the playground above most in the city, but what really sets it apart is the well-maintained bathroom and the extremely clean sandbox — no small measure considering pediatricians and public health experts will tell you that germ-wise, sandboxes are the most hazardous part of a playground.
We noticed city Dept. of Transportation workers Tuesday holding up stop signs on the Ninth Ave. bike lane when the bike lights turned red. D.O.T.’s Scott Gastel said the rush hour program started last month and is part of the city’s effort to make sure things are safer when the new bike share program rolls out Memorial Day.
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May 15 - May 27, 2013
Chin is in and the race is on BY J E F F ER S O N S IE G E L Under a dazzling spring sun, City Councilmember Margaret Chin formally announced her campaign for a second term on Sun., May 5. Dozens, including local activists and powerhouse political allies like Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver and U.S. Rep. Nydia Velazquez, fi lled the steps of Independence Plaza North in Tribeca to show their support for the district’s first Asian-American councilmember, “Councilmember Chin has been one of our community’s staunchest advocates, making sure that as we continue to rebuild, Lower Manhattan receives its fair share,” said Speaker Silver, offering Chin his “strong endorsement.” Rep. Velazquez also praised Chin’s commitment, saying the district needs someone to “stand up for small businesses, working families, affordable housing and access to better education and child care.” Chin, who seemed to know every supporter personally, took pride in recounting the accomplishments of the last four years, including gaining protected affordable housing at 505 LaGuardia Place, inclusion of permanent affordable housing at the Seward Park Urban Renewal Site, and securing space to build two new schools as part of the
New York University and Seward Park development plans. No detail seemed too small, with the crowd ecstatic at the mention of a new traffic light at Duane and Greenwich Sts. — a long-fought battle that began before Chin was elected in 2009. With her husband, a public school teacher, standing among supporters, Chin recounted her arrival in the U.S. 50 years ago, recalling how she took care of her younger brothers while her mother worked in a Chinatown garment factory. Also in the crowd were the parents of U.S. Army Private Danny Chen, who died after hazing by fellow soldiers. Chin said the groundswell of Downtown anger over his death resulted in the discharge of four of the eight soldiers charged in connection with his death. After the speeches, Chin made sure she greeted and thanked everyone in attendance. Community Board 1’s Ro Sheffe told Downtown Express that Chin has been, “one of the strongest pillars in our community.” Bob Townley, founder and director of Manhattan Youth, said Chin helped families navigate the Department of Education system. “Those issues are at the heart of working parents,” Townley said.
Downtown Express photo by Jefferson Siegel
Councilmember Margaret Chin announced her reelection campaign May 5 at Independence Plaza.
“She doesn’t just say the words, she does the work,” said Diane Lapson, president of the I.P.N. Tenants Association. “She’s never failed to support Independence
Plaza North’s issues, like preserving affordable housing.” Chin will face off against Jenifer Rajkumar in the Sept. 10th Democratic primary.
JOIN US AND MAKE WALL STREET PARK BLOOM! Saturday, May 18, 2013 10AM–Noon | Wall Street Park BETWEEN WATER AND SOUTH STREETS
The Downtown Alliance invites you to join us and your neighbors as we plant new flowers and spruce up Wall Street Park. In addition to gardening for all, there will be kid friendly activities like face painting and balloon making. We’ll provide the plantings, the tools, and the top soil, you bring some elbow grease. Together we’ll make Wall Street Park bloom and the kids will have a blast too. Light refreshments available, provided by Whole Foods. WWW.DOWNTOWNNY.COM
May 15 - May 27, 2013
Man shot By BB gUn
A would-be FiDi robber shot his victim in the leg with a BB gun when the man began to shout for help, police said. The 26-year-old man told police he left his office to get lunch on Tues., May 7 at about 2:10 p.m. and walked beneath the scaffolding on Pearl St. At the corner of Pearl and Platt Sts., he was approached by a man wearing a blue sweatshirt who stepped on his foot and said, “Give me your wallet and your phone,” police said. The man said the robber also displayed what looked like a handgun. The victim handed over his wallet but then started shouting for someone to call the police. The robber backed away, but his erstwhile victim followed him for a few steps. The victim reported that his attacker then shot him once in the right leg with what turned out to be a BB gun and threw the wallet back at him before fleeing the scene. Police said they recovered a BB gun and knife in the doorway of a loading dock at 111 John St.
soho BicycLe theFts
Two bicycle thefts were reported in the First Precinct last week, according to police. The first theft occurred between 6:30 and 8:30 a.m. on Fri., May 3, police said. The owner of the bike, 31, said he had chained it to a bike rack outside of 161 Avenue of the Americas, but when he returned for it two hours later, it was no longer there. The bicycle was a $2,000 Masi Speciale. Another man reported that his bicycle was stolen from
a Soho street on Sat., May 4 between 2 and 3 p.m. The victim, 29, told police that he chained his bike outside 56 MacDougal St. while he went to have brunch at a nearby restaurant. When he finished brunch, his wheels — a red and black, 57 cm Kestrel Talon bicycle — had been taken. The bicycle, made for road riding and triathlon use, was purchased for $1,399.95, with additional accessories worth $155.
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Shoplifters got away with almost $7,000 in merchandise from Balenciaga in a snatch and grab from the Soho boutique. An employee of the designer store reported to police that two men entered the 138 Wooster St. location at 12:10 p.m. on Sun., May 12 and made off with four bags from the display table. The men, who were both about 6 feet tall and wearing hooded jackets, fled the scene on foot carrying a pink Balenciaga tote bag worth $1,495, a black tote ($1,145), a black mini Papier tote ($1,495) and a silver disc bag ($2,850). Video of the incident was available, but police have reported no further leads.
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When he came back to it at about 9:30 p.m., he found that his property had been stolen. He said that when he checked his credit and debit card records, he found that unauthorized purchases had been made on the cards. His bank informed him that four MetroCards had been purchased with his debit card and four with his credit card. He also lost three lottery tickets, his work ID, and his health insurance card.
— Kaitlyn Meade
Southbridge yard sale The residents of Southbridge Towers are cleaning out their closets — and that’s a lot of closets. The 13th annual Southbridge Towers Multi-family Yard Sale will be held Thursday, May 16 through Saturday, May 18 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. The streets surrounding Southbridge will be a bazaar of odds and ends, starting at Key Food at 55 Fulton St. and curling around Fulton, Cliff, Pearl and Beekman Sts., into the courtyard of the Mitchell-Lama co-op. “People come from all over,” said Arlyne Wishner, who noted that her table will be the first one you see by the Key Food. “It’s very interesting because there’s so much variety — kitchen things, sheets, some of the women bring their old jewelry, clothes, somebody was selling statues....” One year, she remembers seeing a deer head on display. Another day, someone found a set of antique photos. The sellers are all residents selling their own items, and they get to keep what they make. Some donate to their church. Last year, over 100 people set up tables to hawk their wares to over 1,000 customers over three days. “It’s really a nice, fun event,” said Wishner. “It gets everyone together.”
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May 15 - May 27, 2013
Severe storm knocks down trees in Battery Park City BY T E RE SE L O E B K R E U Z E R A brief, powerful rain and hail storm leveled large trees and shattered windows in Battery Park City just before 4 p.m. on Saturday, May 11. Some people were scratched by the falling trees but no one was seriously injured. With some of the fury and specificity of a tornado — though no one has definitely called it that — the storm did most of its damage between Albany and Liberty Sts. on the Battery Park City esplanade. Merchants River House lost eight trees, according to Charles Waddy, assistant general manager, who was on duty at the time. Customers had been eating outside on the terraces, he said, but came inside as the storm approached from the west, over the Hudson River. Some people who were walking by on the esplanade ran inside the restaurant to shelter from the storm. Waddy was helping two customers come in from Merchants River House’s northern patio when he heard a crackling sound and then a thunderous crash. He rushed to the south terrace and saw that trees had fallen there as well. “All of the trees came down at once,” he said. In 15 minutes, it was all over. By then, the New York City Office of Emergency Management and the Fire Department had arrived on the scene. Waddy said that the F.D.N.Y. checked the building’s electrical outlets. “It was scary,” Waddy said. “What if someone had stayed outside a minute longer? It was shocking, how quickly it happened.” Cindy Fine, who was watching the storm from a high floor of an apartment on Rector Place, said that the wind was blowing so hard that the rain was horizontal. She said she had never seen anything like it. Another witness described “walls of water.”
Photo by Jay Fine
Saturday’s storm knocked down many trees in Battery Park City including one by the Gateway Plaza pool.
Several apartments on Rector Place and at Gateway Plaza had windows blown out by the force of the storm. At The Solaire at 20 River Terrace, building manager Michael Gubbins reported “slight damage” to one of the building’s revolving doors. “Before the full extent of the storm’s impact was known, T. Fleisher, [the director of horticulture for the Battery Park City Parks Conservancy], assembled a team with special expertise in tree climbing and chain saw operation assuming those skills would be
necessary,” said Matthew Monahan, spokesperson for the conservancy. “He would be proven correct.” Waddy said that around 7 p.m. on Saturday, workmen from the Parks Conservancy started removing trees and branches from the south terrace of Merchants River House. They also removed trees from the north terrace that were blocking the path into the restaurant. The work continued to a limited degree on Sunday and is likely to continue for sev-
eral more days. Monahan said that the trees that fell “are some of the oldest in Battery Park City, going back to the early 1980s.” Because they were growing on landfill over a concrete substratum, their root balls were wide but not deep. Whether the other trees on the esplanade are in jeopardy and could be a safety hazard remains unanswered. “We’re in full recovery mode,” Monahan said. Evaluation of the remaining trees will come later.
Downtown Express photos by Scot Surbeck
Trees fell on the Merchants River House cafe after a severe rain and hail storm Sat., May 11.
May 15 - May 27, 2013
As student wait continues, parent anger grows Continued from page 1
Do we sign for another year?” Gould, who’s hoping for a spot at P.S. 234 in Tribeca, was one of three waitlisted parents invited to Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver’s School Overcrowding Task Force meeting Fri., May 10. Frustration filled the room as Education officials said it would take another month to come up with a plan to find alternate spaces somewhere in Manhattan (the officials ruled out busing the children over the Brooklyn Bridge). The anger did not just come from waitlisted parents or the Lower Manhattan school advocates — even principal Terri Ruyter of P.S 276 chastised the officials for continuing to wait to look for temporary space to relieve the problem. “I just think it’s a day late and a dollar short,” she told them. “I’m a Board of Ed employee — I’m also a parent and a taxpayer. I find it unconscionable that this is a continuing problem, that I spend monthly afternoons here listening to the same old thing time after time…. “I don’t know who’s making the decisions. I’m sure you would help us if you could — somebody is getting in the way of making this happen.” What set Ruyter off was when Ben Goodman, the director of the D.O.E.’s
Manhattan office of public affairs, told Silver it would be another month before anyone had an answer as to whether former Battery Park City Parks Conservancy space would be suitable for temporary classrooms. Ruyter said the space had already been leased to a private preschool and the city continues to let missed opportunities slip away. Silver, one of Albany’s power brokers, insisted the city officials come back with answers, and he proposed several dates until he found one, June 7, that the principals could also attend. He also asked that the Education Dept. send him temporary and alternate sites under consideration by May 24. “We need solutions down here because it’s not acceptable, because parents want their children in neighborhood schools,” Silver said. Overall, the waitlist number of 110 is down from 148 a month ago, but the principals of P.S. 89 and 234 both said their lists each would have shrunk by four more if not for the proposal to move P.S. 150 from Tribeca to Chelsea. P.S. 150 is a non-zoned choice school in which most children live in Lower Manhattan. In response to the surprise announcement a few weeks ago, the city has allowed incoming P.S. 150 kindergarten students who turned down offers at their zoned school to go to the front of those waiting lists. Chloe Ching, a parent waiting for a seat at P.S. 89, said she was hopeful when she
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moved up to eight on her list, but then she was bounced back down to 12 to make room for P.S. 150 parents. She said she was willing to sacrifice a possible pre-K seat for her 3-year-old in a year if it would help. “I would gladly give up my seat for my [youngest child] if it meant my five-year-old got into a decent school,” she said. There are about 15 seats currently available at Spruce Street School, P.S. 89 and Peck Slip School, but the principal of Spruce, Nancy Harris, said she was told not to accept any waitlisted students zoned for other schools, and Ronnie Najjar, the 89 principal, said she was also told to hold off filling up the last few slots. After the meeting, Gentian Falstrom, director of elementary school admissions, said she would consider making offers for the eight or nine Spruce slots before mid-June. “We’re going to take a look at that,” she said. She also told one waitlisted parent, “I hate this, I really do.” Devon Puglia, a D.O.E. spokesperson, did not explain why there was a delay in offering parents the available seats. Paul Hovitz, co-chairperson of Community Board 1’s Youth and Education Committee, said the board has been working with a realtor looking for sites below Canal St., but the city needs to move more quickly. “We do have sites that easily could be
ready a year from September,” Hovitz said. One of these sites could be the new home for P.S. 150, Hovitz said, which would likely reduce the number of families currently looking to move to one of the zoned schools. Hovitz said for this September more temporary classroom space could be added to the D.O.E. headquarters at Tweed Courthouse. “These rooms have been split with dividers before,” he said. The building has four large classrooms that each could be divided in two, Hovitz said, and the other two rooms are smaller, but may be able to be divided too. In addition, Eric Greenleaf, another of the Downtown school advocates, has said there is room on the first floor to add an additional classroom, bringing the potential expansion to seven rooms. The Education Dept.’s Puglia said expanding Tweed is not under consideration at the moment. The classrooms are currently being used as “incubator space” for Peck Slip, which is only taking in two kindergarten classes a year, but will be able to accommodate five when the permanent building opens in 2015. Gould, who said her family is jammed in a one bedroom apartment Independence Plaza, also told the education officials she was shocked that things were moving so slowly. “I’m hoping this is just a poker face and things are actually happening,” she said. “I’m floored.”
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May 15 - May 27, 2013
Seaport firm promises a ‘hip’ summer BY T E RE SE LO E B K R E U Z E R The Howard Hughes Corp., which has a 60-year lease on parts of the South Street Seaport, has summer plans to try and spike up Fulton and Front Sts. with some razzle-dazzle. For starters, the Dallas-based corporation is planning to line Titanic Park (site of a memorial lighthouse that once crowned the Seamen’s Church Institute) with swings that play music and that light up at night. It will also place shipping containers on Fulton St. that can house “up-and-coming retailers.” Curated by Brooklyn Flea, the Brooklyn food and flea market, SmorgasBar
‘We were looking at trying to create a very exciting, compelling place for the community and for Lower Manhattan this summer.’ will set up shop atop these containers and on Front St., showcasing a rotating collection of a dozen local food and beverage purveyors. New, mod kiosks have been designed for Fulton St., to replace the old ones trashed by Superstorm Sandy. At the intersection of Fulton and Front Sts., Howard Hughes plans to roll out artificial grass and to set up lawn chairs for weekly screenings of family-friendly, action and comedy films. A preview film will be shown on Memorial Day weekend. The space will be utilized for live music on
Image courtesy of Howard Hughes Corp.
Rendering of the Seaport plan Howard Hughes Corp. is calling “See/Change.”
Wednesday nights. Cannon’s Walk, an enclave of historic buildings opening onto both Fulton and Front Sts., will become an art venue, curated by the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council. In addition, an “event production/experiential marketing agency,” Brightest Young Things, from Washington, D.C. has been engaged by Howard Hughes to stage events in the Cannon’s Walk brickwalled courtyard. “This is the beginning of the rebirth of the Seaport,” said Chris Curry, senior executive vice president for Howard Hughes on May 8, when he made a presentation about the summer plans to Community Board
1’s Seaport Committee. “We call it See/ Change.” He said that the South Street Seaport would be rebranded as “See/Change” and that a marketing campaign would take place throughout the summer. Several members of the Community Board expressed concerns about the plans. Jason Friedman said that he worried that “the kiosks will turn into something permanent. I don’t understand how you’re circumventing the community board,” he said. “You’re replacing it with something new in a historic district.” Curry said that the new design was “consistent with the Pier 17 architecture.”
Michael Levine, director of planning and land use for Community Board 1, said he had similar reservations about the kiosks and wanted to know if any C.B. 1 approvals would be necessary before implementing the plans. Curry said no. He said that the Landmarks Preservation Commission had already approved the Howard Hughes plans, as had the Fire Department. Subsequent to the community board meeting, the Department of Buildings also approved them. “I don’t believe we need to get approval from all these agencies for these kiosks, but Continued on page 18
Save the Seaport Museum, pols tell Howard Hughes Corp. BY J O S H R O G E R S Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver, Councilmember Margaret Chin and State Sen. Daniel Squadron fired off a letter to Howard Hughes Corp. May 1 saying it was “incumbent” on the developer to come up with a way to allow the South Street Seaport Museum to stay. “As a leaseholder with plans to develop much of the surrounding area, we feel it is incumbent upon Howard Hughes to help our community come up with a solution that will keep the doors open at this outstanding museum,” read the letter to David Weinreb, C.E.O. of Hughes. “In fact, revenue generated from retail at the Seaport was always intended to help support the museum.” The original 1981 lease between Howard
Hughes’ predecessor in the Seaport, the Rouse Company, and the Seaport Museum was supposed to provide a funding source for the museum. The financially strapped museum, which was damaged in Hurricane Sandy, was forced to close its Fulton St. galleries on April 7. Since the fall of 2011, the museum has been managed by the Museum of the City of New York, which recently extended its management contract through July 5. The Seaport Museum’s management has accused the Hughes firm of trying to push it out in order to get control of more property in the Seaport. The corporation, which has a 60-year lease on portions of the Seaport, got City Council approval in March to demolish and
rebuild the Pier 17 mall. After the vote, the city’s Economic Development Corp. released an unredacted Letter of Intent revealing Howard Hughes’ desire to build a large hotel and residential building in the neighborhood. “We urge you to share more fully your development plans for the area with our community, including the ways in which you can integrate the museum,” the letter concluded. “Our neighborhood will greatly benefit from a thriving Seaport Museum.” The museum and the buildings leased by Howard Hughes Corp. are on public land owned by E.D.C. The Seaport is in the district of all three politicians who wrote the letter. Silver, as probably the state’s second most powerful
Democrat after Gov. Cuomo, could be influential in this matter as could Councilmember Chin, who would get a vote to approve or block any future development plans of Howard Hughes. Sen. Squadron is running this year to be the city’s next public advocate. In an email on Thursday afternoon, Susan Henshaw Jones, director of the Museum of the City of New York and president of the South Street Seaport Museum, said, “I just heard about this [letter] and I am grateful for their implicit praise.” The Hughes Corp. spokesperson did not comment on the letter.
— With reporting by Terese Loeb Kreuzer
May 15 - May 27, 2013
Lower East Side trials The man accused of shooting and wounding three people on the Lower East Side in 2010 has been found guilty of all charges, including second-degree attempted murder, Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance announced May 1. Mario Rodriguez, 25, was also convicted on counts of assault, criminal possession of a weapon and reckless endangerment. Around 8:45 p.m. on Oct. 26, 2010, Rodriguez was in the middle of an argument with another man in front of 195 Stanton St., when Rodriguez pulled out a 9-millimeter semiautomatic handgun and began firing at the other man, hitting him in the torso, according to court documents. Bullets fired by Rodriguez also struck two bystanders — a man, 44, and a woman, 52. Rodriguez fled the scene, but was tracked to Jersey City, and was later arrested there by members of the Seventh Precinct Detective Squad, the D.A. said. Rodriguez is expected to be sentenced June 6.
taXi thieF gets 11 yeaRs
The man convicted of assaulting a cab driver on the Lower East Side, stealing his taxi and then crashing it in Union Square has been sentenced
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to 11 years in prison, D.A. Vance also announced on May 1. Michael Findley, 33, was found g u i l t y o f r o b b e r y, r e c k l e s s e n d a n germent, grand larceny and criminal possession of stolen property by a State Supreme Court jury last December. Around 3:15 a.m. on Feb. 27, 2011, Findley got into a taxi at the corner of Bowery and Delancey St. After causing a disturbance, the driver asked him to get out at the corner of Houston and Lafayette Sts, according to court documents. When the hack then got out to try and remove his fare, Findley punched him and stole the taxi, speeding through Soho and Greenwich Village at more than 80 miles per hour, the D.A. said. After leading police on a wild chase through red lights and oncoming traffic, Findley crashed into a light pole at Union Square West and E. 15th St. In addition to his prison term, Findley was sentenced to five years of post-release supervision.
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May 15 - May 27, 2013
Civic Center plan includes media center
Veterans, service members and families, we’re here to help.
Downtown Express file photo
A media center for youth has been added to the plan for 346 Broadway, a former city office building being redeveloped as a hotel and condos.
comings of the city.” Joyce called the 16,000 square foot portion, though, “an insult.” Joyce lambasted t he city’s ten-year campaign to promote Downtown as a residential mecca. “This was a planned development much like Levittown. The shortage of school seats was one of the most predictable and preventable situations,” she said. “Nowhere else in America would you see that many units built without accompanying school space.” At the May 2 committee meeting, Hughes stressed the importance for inclusion in the resolution a requirement that the developer at 346 Broadway be required to complete the community’s digital arts and media facility in a similar time frame along with the commercial space, and agree to meet regularly with stakeholders who will monitor construction progress. “Just like any other project we want to make sure that with this vote we are still engaged in what’s happening — we just don’t want it to go away.” The media center will not open for a few years and the operator will be chosen by the city. The space itself is awarded to the community rent-free in perpetuity. New C.B. 1 member Kathleen Gupta noted at the meeting that Downtown has “very little in the way of senior centers, and that one of the most innovative new models is digital centers for seniors.” She suggested that the facility be made available to seniors when not in use by young people. The non-profit facility, while a community amenity, will not be free of charge. Michael Levine, C.B. 1‘s director of planning and land use, said the facility would be a “major accomplishment for the community. It gives us something we don’t have now, but it does not solve the problem of [school] overcrowding, and it’s not intended to — it’s intended to give the community an amenity it doesn’t have now — an additional educational facility for a growing population.”
By CYN T H IA M A G NU S Downtown youth will get a new media facility as part of the Civic Center building sales, but school advocates remain worried about the shortage of kindergarten seats. Community Board 1’s Planning Committee unanimously approved a draft resolution May 2 recommending the sale of the city-owned property at 346 Broadway. It is part of the larger civic center real estate deal announced by the mayor in March, and is supposed to include a 16,000 square foot digital arts media facility for Downtown youth and, some C.B. 1 members hope, the wider community. The measure will go before the full community board on May 28. The next step in the certain-to-beapproved property deal is for the matter to be presented at the next Borough Board meeting in June. C.B. 1 chairperson Catherine McVay Hughes said, “The creation of a state-of-the-art digital arts community facility with an educational youth component that is available to all will be the first of its kind in New York City and shows that Downtown continues to be on the cutting edge. It was a collaborative effort with Borough President Stringer, Councilmember [Margaret] Chin, and Community Board 1.” Hughes, who on May 7 attended the groundbreaking for the Downtown Community Television Center’s new all-documentary film theater — the city’s first movie house dedicated exclusively to documentaries — said the location of the two centers Downtown would offer a “positive synergy.” On Mon., May 6, Chin called the facility a “good start” in a community that wanted more. “I think this goes a long way in terms of supplementing the education programs in our schools,” she said. Acknowledging the problems of overcrowding and the concurrent funding constraints for extra school programs, Chin said, “Hopefully this will meet that gap.” Other community education advocates are less optimistic. Tricia Joyce, C.B.1’s chairperson of the Youth and Education Committee, said, “I would be excited about the digital media center if we didn’t have a 148-seat shortage,” referring to this year’s waiting list for kindergarten seats. Joyce said she “is stunned at the disconnect” city administration demonstrates toward the needs of neighborhood residents. “The last thing Downtown needs is luxury housing,” said Joyce, adding that for those relocating to the neighborhood, “It’s important to know that there is not one seat in any local school for any family” considering such a move. The city-owned property at 346 Broadway was sold to the New York and Miami based Peebles Corporation for $160 million, and will be developed into condominiums and hotel units. “The city realized millions,” said Joyce, “I cannot understand how the city cannot afford to build two schools.” While acknowledging the work that the community board committed to winning the space for the new media facility, Joyce said, “The last thing any of us should do is be at odds with each other over the short-
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May 15 - May 27, 2013
Downtown Express photos by Q. Sakamaki
Marching for immigrants’ and workers’ rights Marchers in the May Day parade on Wednesday, May 1 made their way down from Union Square to City Hall. The big issue that marchers called attention to, along with workers’ rights, was immigrants’ rights. Some condemned Arizona’s harsh “SB 1070” antiillegal immigration act. A group also called attention to the Fukishima nuclear disaster of March 2011.
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May 15 - May 27, 2013
I.S. 276 students text their way to science honors BY KA I T LY N M E A D E Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott came to Battery Park City’s P.S./I.S. 276 to congratulate a team of seventh-graders whose experiment won the Lower Manhattan school second place in the state in a science and technology competition. On May 7, Max Sano, Ashley Ip, Maya Gardner and Julian Apprendi shook hands and posed for pictures with the chancellor in the science room of I.S. 276. The team, named the “Bateria Assassins” — which became an inside joke after they submitted their title without the requisite “c” in “bacteria” — are four seventh grade students whose dedication led them to stay in the classroom after school or work via “Gchat,” Google Docs and text messaging from home. “We all learned you really have to cooperate and make sure everyone is ready to do it, or you won’t be able to,” said Max Sano. “This is extra work for them — they had to manage their time,” said their teacher, Youngjee Kim. Even though the experiment itself did not take long, she said the students were involved every step of the way from planning out their experiment, addressing all the questions, organizing and presenting the resulting data and putting it online to be judged. HalfPageAd_5-13.pdf 2/20/2013 9:34:49 AM Two teams of Kim’s seventh grade stu-
Downtown Express photo by Kaitlyn Meade
Schools Chancellor Dennis Walcott spoke with I.S. 276 students Maya Gardner, left, Julian Apprendi, their teacher Youngjee Kim, and fellow classmates Max Sano and Ashley Ip. The U.S. Army awarded the students $500 bonds for their science work.
dents from the Battery Park City School entered the E-Cybermission competition, which is a free, web-based Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) program sponsored by the U.S. Army. The teams compete to identify and solve community problems.
“Bateria Assassins” decided to research how keeping an area bacteria free would help the community by looking at the effects of different of concentrations of ethyl alcohol on e-coli bacteria. They studied the effectiveness of different hand sanitizing gels and learned that “ethyl alcohol
concentration does matter, but you don’t need a whole lot to kill those nasty germs.” In fact, 65 percent was found to be the optimum level. “See, you have influenced my purchasing, because I do look at labels,” said Walcott to the team of students when they explained their findings. The students said that winning, and the attendant $500 U.S. Savings Bond, were just icing on top of the experience itself. “I’ve always loved science and I want to specialize in science,” said Maya Gardner, who was initially interested in field scientists like Jane Goodall, but said the competition showed her different opportunities in the area of science. “This has kind of opened up a new door, like, ‘Hey, this isn’t the only thing I can do.’” “In elementary school, I didn’t like the way we did science. We’d just study for tests and then forget everything…. We do hands-on experience now. We do labs and watch movies, we still use the text books, but we discuss it afterwards,” said Ashley Ip. “This is what’s happening as the result of a great science teacher,” Walcott said. He also noted principal Terri Ruyter’s dedication to science education. Next year, the four students plan on doing a more advanced project in field science — in the same team, of course.
May 15 - May 27, 2013
W.T.C. spire up and ready to go By Kaitlyn M eade The last pieces of the spire were installed at the top of 1 World Trade Center on Friday, May 10, bringing the Freedom Tower to its final height of 1,776 feet, said the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey. Pieces 17 and 18 were installed by construction crews using an elevated crane on top of the building. Ironworkers lifted the final two pieces off a temporary work platform on the roof and attached them to the 16 sections of the spire that were already installed. During the installation, two crane operators climbed 195 feet to enter the crane’s cabin, which is equipped with safety cables and ironworkers set and tightened 60 bolts at an altitude of 1,701 feet, said to the Port Authority. The last two pieces were lifted to the top of the tower on Thursday, May 2, completing a journey that began in Valleyfield, Quebec, where the steel sections were originally shipped from. They traveled 1,500 nautical miles to Lower Manhattan and were hoisted into place starting in December 2012. “To see that last piece go up is a real honor,” said George Meritt, who stopped to watch as they were hoisted two weeks ago. He said he will have spent 40 years in construction in September, and that this was a good “last hurrah.” The beacon, which contains 288 50-watt LED modules that produce a 288,000 lumens of light, will soon be lit. It will be visible up to 50 miles on a clear night, according to the Port Authority. Controversy over whether the spire can be counted as “architecturally significant” or simply as an antennae — which is not part of the total height — will determine if 1 W.T.C. can be called the tallest building in America. The Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat, based in Chicago, is waiting to see the final design of the spire before it makes its judgment. If it decides
that the height should be counted at the top of its 104th floor, 1 W.T.C. will be the third tallest building behind two Chicago skyscrapers — Willis Tower (formerly the Sears Tower) and the Trump International Hotel & Tower. Whether or not it receives recognition for the Council on Tall Buildings, it has become a symbol for New York City. “With the final section of spire now in place, One World Trade Center stands as the Western Hemisphere’s tallest icon of freedom, resilience and the indomitable American spirit,” Scott Rechler, the Port’s vice chairperson said in a statement. “It’s a mission for all of us…” Steve Plate, head of construction on the W.T.C. site for the authority, told reporters May 2. “At the end of the day, when evil events happen, the goodness of people transcends in a very special way, in a good way to shine a bright light on the site like this that shows how people will rally together to bring out the best in people.”
Downtown Express photos by Terese Loeb Kreuzer.
The last pieces of the spire were hoisted and installed, topping off 1 W.T.C.
May 15 - May 27, 2013
transit sam ALTERNATE SIDE PARKING IS SUSPENDED WEDNESDAY AND THURSDAY Lower Manhattan will be a party this week! Parades, festivals, and food fairs will close streets from the East Village to the West Village all the way down to Wall St. At 1 p.m. Saturday, a dance parade will kick off at E. 21st St., head down Broadway, turn east at St. Mark’s Pl. and finish in Tompkins Square Park. A Falun Dafa parade will take over Chinatown 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, closing Mott St. between Broome and Worth Sts., as well as Worth St. between Centre and Baxter Sts. ‘Taste of Tribeca’ will close Duane St. between Greenwich and Hudson Sts. and Greenwich St. between Reade and Jay Sts. from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday. The Financial District Spring Community Day will close Broad St. between Exchange Pl. and Beaver St. 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday. N.Y.U. grads will celebrate in ‘Grad Alley’ near Washington Square Park; West 4th St., Washington Square East and LaGuardia Pl. will close 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Tuesday. The Greenwich Village Fair will close Greenwich Ave. between Sixth and Seventh
Aves. 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday. To keep up with street fair updates, follow me on Twitter @gridlocksam. Platt St. will close between Gold and Pearl Sts. 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Collister St. will close between Hubert and Laight Sts. 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. daily through mid-June. All Manhattan-bound lanes of the Brooklyn Bridge will close 11 p.m. to 6 a.m. Wednesday and Thursday, 12:01 a.m. to 7 a.m. Saturday, and 11 p.m. to 6 a.m. Monday and Tuesday. That means inbound drivers will detour to the Manhattan Bridge and onto Canal St. On West St./Route 9A between West Thames and Chambers Sts., two northbound lanes will close 10 p.m. to 5 a.m. weeknights and two southbound lanes will close 12:01 a.m. to 5 a.m. weeknights. Two lanes in both directions will close 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. From the mailbag: Dear Transit Sam, Trying to find out the NYC rules and laws that govern the use of bicycles and bicycle racks has been utterly frustrating. In my area, Hanover Square, a single round bicycle
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rack has been put up in front of a bagel shop. Chained to this rack there are always from five to as many as 13 bicycles. What is the rule for the number of bicycles that may be chained to a single round bicycle rack? These bicycles are then left chained overnight. Is this legal? Finally, is it true that the users of the new Citi Bike program will not be required to wear helmets and that they may even be rented to children? Richard, Financial District Dear Richard, Good timing for bicycle questions: the Citi Bike bicycle-sharing program will roll
out on Memorial Day. The round ‘CityRack’ bicycle racks in your neighborhood (and around the city) are owned by the city, who “assumes responsibility for the rack but not the bicycles parked at it.” It follows that they don’t regulate the number of bicycles chained to bicycle racks. Same story for overnight storage: it may not be smart, but it’s legal. As for Citi Bike, helmets will not be required, and all users must be at least 16 years old. If you think there should be more bicycle racks in your neighborhood, submit a request to the DOT: http://www.nyc.gov/html/dot/ html/bicyclists/cityrack-suggest.shtml. Transit Sam
May 15 - May 27, 2013
Seaport’s Pioneer ship sails into the new season By T erese Loeb K reuzer When Daniel Goldwyn, an information technology manager from Newark, boarded the South Street Seaport Museum’s schooner Pioneer on Saturday, May 4, the crew applauded. That was probably not the reception that Goldwyn expected when he decided to take a two-hour sail around New York harbor aboard the “nice, antique boat,” as he described it, but the crew, composed of three paid staff and several volunteers, could not contain its joy. Goldwyn was the first passenger of the Pioneer’s 2013 public sailing season. Pioneer, built in 1885 to transport sand mined near the mouth of Delaware Bay, is one of the Seaport Museum’s historic vessels. When the museum was forced to close because of financial difficulties in the winter of 2011, Pioneer missed a season. Other than that, she has been a summer fixture in the harbor for years, transporting adults and kids on public sails and groups of school children. This year, with the museum again facing severe financial difficulties because of damage caused by Superstorm Sandy, the Pioneer’s stalwart presence seemed an omen that the beleaguered museum might yet survive. Pioneer was built as a one-masted sloop, but 10 years later, acquired a second mast and was re-rigged as a schooner. Most coastal schooners were made of wood. Pioneer has a wrought-iron hull. “She was the first of only two cargo sloops built of iron in this country, and is the only iron-hulled American merchant sailing vessel still in existence,” according to the museum. “By 1930, when new owners moved her from the Delaware River to Massachusetts, she had been fitted with an engine, and was no longer using sails. In 1966, she was substantially rebuilt and turned into a sailing vessel once again.”
Passengers on the Pioneer May 4, 2013.
Downtown Express photos by Terese Loeb Kreuzer.
Richard Dorfman, captain of the South Street Seaport Museum’s Pioneer, leads the opening day sail of 2013.
“She’s a very heavy boat,” said Richard Dorfman, captain of the Pioneer since 2006, who was at the helm on opening day. He said the boat was in great shape and “handles like a dream.” Museum volunteers have helped to maintain Pioneer. Some of them were present on opening day to help passengers board and disembark and to wrestle with the boat’s heavy sails. The passengers are also asked to help to hoist the sails, giving them a taste of
what life was like for the mariners who once worked on the Pioneer. It was a beautiful, sunny day with good winds. “I loved the boat ride,” said Emma Thesiger, a tourist from England. It was her second day in New York City, which she had never visited before. “It gives a different perspective to the city.” Her friend, Tara Owen-Smith, from England but now living in New York, said the boat ride was “great” and that she would
definitely recommend it. “It was fun to pull up the sails,” she said. Goldwyn said he would like to come back for more. The boat sails two or three times a day through the end of May and then four or five times a day from Tuesdays to Sundays thereafter. Tickets for a two-hour ride are $45 for adults, and $35 for seniors and for children 3 to 12 years old. For a complete schedule and to buy tickets, visit www.nywatertaxi.com/ tours/pioneer-tour.
May 15 - May 27, 2013
South Street Seaport
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May 15 - May 27, 2013
Pier 25 playground reopens Continued from page 1
Ava when asked by her mom Missy what she had missed about the park. She wasn’t the only one. Kids crowded close to the gate for the ribbon cutting ceremony as Wils, U.S. Rep. Jerrold Nadler, State Sen. Daniel Squadron and Councilmember Margaret Chin all wielded their giant scissors to snip the last barrier between the kids and their playground. Finally, the gate swung open and the children were set loose. Parents were lucky if they could keep up. “It’s really kind of nice, just to see everyone back,” said Taylor Chapman, a fifthgrader at P.S. 150. She said it was sad to see the park deserted day after day, and her younger brother Dean would often ask why they couldn’t go to Pier 25. “This is lovely, we’re so happy it’s back open,” said their mother Wendy, who is the head of P.S. 150’s P.T.A. Chapman is fighting to keep P.S. 150 in Tribeca after the city Department of Education proposed to move the small school to Chelsea. “We love this neighborhood, the park and the pier. It’s everything we need. We come here after school,” said P.S. 150 parent Lenny Crooks, whose son Walt was ready to play soccer on the pier’s field. “It’s because of this that we’re strongly opposed to anything, to moving. Our little school doesn’t have facilities. We don’t need them, because we have this.” Local electeds also made appearances. Sen. Squadron’s 2-year-old son was one of the first tugging on the chains at the playground gate. Councilmember Chin came up to declare, “we can’t wait to play miniature
Downtown Express photo by Kaitlyn Meade
Crowds surged onto Pier 25’s playground as Madelyn Wils and Congressman Nadler opened the gates.
golf again!” Nadler, in his speech before the ribbon cutting ceremony, said, “After Hurricane Sandy hit and the playground was devastated, we were all concerned about how long
it would take and how hard it would be to repair, as was so much of the damage caused by Sandy. Thanks to the hard work of the Hudson River Park Trust and the Friends of Hudson River Park and so many of the
Downtown Express photo by Milo Hess
people here today and the generosity of so many people in the community, the Pier 25 playground is again open in time for spring.” There is no city or state funding for the park, which was originally supposed to be self-sustaining. “FEMA has not yet reimbursed the Hudson River Park Trust for Irene or Sandy,” noted Community Board 1 chairperson Catherine McVay Hughes. “It was really about the neighborhood coming together — they really came through,” said Steven Oppedal, of the Friends of Hudson River Park. The Friends were responsible for raising about $300,000 of the $450,000 it took to get the pier back open. That money paid to repair some the damage done in October when the storm surge pushed underneath the pier and caused the paving beneath the park to buckle. The material under the park had to be replaced (this time, with heavier material that may better withstand future surges). “It was, as you can see in the pictures, a complete disaster,” said Oppedal, referring to a series of ‘before’ photos that show how the playground surface collapsed in sections, bringing equipment down with it. However, he said, “it looks exactly like it did, which is amazing!” Wils said the park-wide lights should come back online on May 24, with the individual piers getting light in the following month.
May 15 - May 27, 2013
Pier 42 opens on interim basis; Art next on the way BY SAM SPOKONY Damaris Reyes, executive director of Good Old Lower East Side, was the final person to speak before the interim opening of Pier 42 last Saturday, but she told the beginning of its history. And with her organization, which works to support neighborhood housing and preservation, entering its 35th year — just after recovering from the impact of Hurricane Sandy — Reyes seemed to be marking a moment of singular importance as she told that brief story. “When we learned several years ago that the city was looking into redeveloping the waterfront, I’m not going to lie, we were afraid,” Reyes said. “And we were afraid because of all the development that we knew was coming. And we thought, ‘If they rebuild the waterfront, it’s just going to mean more displacement. It’s just going to mean more luxury development.’ ” But as everyone present could see on that long-awaited, sunny spring day, those fears had never been realized. This wasn’t a groundbreaking for the construction of a luxury high-rise. It was a celebration on the path to a new city park — one soon to be designed by a renowned architect who worked on Hudson River Park, and which is expected to be on par with any major green space in the city. To Lower East Side community leaders, it had been a long time coming. And to local politicians, it was a step forward in bringing
a little more breathing room to their densely populated and park-hungry community. “We’re building a harbor park — a Central Park in the center of the city — and it’s full of world-class open space,” said State Sen. Daniel Squadron, who, along with U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer, secured $16 million in funding for the pier’s redevelopment in November 2011. Construction on the 8-acre waterfront space next to South St., between Montgomery and Jackson Sts., isn’t set to start for at least a year, as a master plan is now being finalized by Lower Manhattan-based firm Mathews Nielsen Landscape Architects. But the pier’s northernmost section is now open to interim public use, for picnicking, ball playing or quiet relaxation, from dawn to dusk. Saturday’s other highlight was a public preface to the Paths to Pier 42 series, which will feature art, educational and design installations this summer and fall. The program was conceived by the Lower East Side Waterfront Alliance — which includes GOLES, Hester St. Collaborative, L.E.S. Ecology Center, Two Bridges Neighborhood Council and the Committee Against AntiAsian Violence (CAAAV) — and aided by the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council. Starting July 20, five jury-selected artists and designers will display their installations at the pier. Jennifer Wen Ma, one of the five selected artists and a Lower East resident for more
Downtown Express photos by Sam Spokony
Luther Stubblefield, a longtime member of the Baruch Houses Tenants Association, right, drew pictures with children for an interactive installation by art designer Chat Travieso, one of the Paths to Pier 42 participants.
than a decade, said she’s tossing around ideas about creating a community garden, or developing a mentoring program for local children in association with other video artists. “I actually take walks around the waterfront quite a lot, and I’ve always noticed that this portion was like no-man’s land,” Ma said Saturday. “So when I found out about [Paths to Pier 42], I thought it would be great to finally work in my community,
for my community.” Signe Nielsen, principal of Mathews Nielsen Landscape Architects, said, “This is a rare opportunity to actually open a park before it’s capitally improved,” Nielsen said. “It’s also hugely informative for us, because it allows us to see where people are choosing to sit down, which way they’re facing and what they’re looking to do here. How many people are bringing kids? How many are bringing bikes?”
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May 15 - May 27, 2013
Seaport plans Continued from page 7
if I’m proven to be wrong, we’ll deal with it through the summer,” Curry said. “We were looking at trying to create a very exciting, compelling place for the community and for Lower Manhattan this summer.” He made no mention of the South Street Seaport Museum in his remarks, however, Jerry Gallagher, the museum’s general manager, was at the meeting to fill the board in on what has been happening at the museum in recent weeks. He said that the museum is continuing to work with the city and with the New York City Economic Development Corporation (E.D.C.) on post-Sandy repairs. Gallagher mentioned that the museum’s popular Mini-Mates program for young children meets at the museum’s 12 Fulton St. facilities and that “school groups come to the museum at 12 Fulton St. Our education department is trying to schedule a summer camp for later on in the summer, probably in August,” he said. “That would be a oneweek program.” Though this might have sounded like random information, it was not. Because its mechanical and electrical systems
were trashed by Sandy, the museum had to close its 12 Fulton St. galleries on April 7. Should the museum not occupy this space for six months, by virtue of its lease with E.D.C., the Howard Hughes Corp. would have an option to develop it. Also, Gallagher’s reference to a possible summer camp in August seemed to indicate that there is some possibility that the Museum of the City of New York will continue to manage the South Street Seaport Museum after its contract expires on July 5. However, in answer to specific questions about these issues, Gallagher said he had nothing to report. Paul Goldstein of New York Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver’s office said that the museum’s continuance is a priority. “Are there any efforts under way among the parties [E.D.C., the Howard Hughes Corp. and the museum] to get it resolved or is it just out there and nothing is really happening?” he asked. “There are ongoing conversations between the Museum of the City of New York, the Department of Cultural Affairs and E.D.C. and I think that Howard Hughes Corp. is included in those conversations as well,” Gallagher said. “I don’t have anything else to report other than that with regard to negotiations.”
Image courtesy of Howard Hughes Corp.
Renderings of the “retail containers.”
Image courtesy of Howard Hughes Corp.
A rendering of the new Pier 17.
May 15 - May 27, 2013
Long before ‘FiDi’, ‘Little Syria’ was Downtown BY T E RE SE L O E B K R E U Z E R If there were ghosts on Washington St. in Lower Manhattan, they would probably be speaking Arabic and would recognize little of the neighborhood where they once lived and worked. The cluster of tenements, shops, restaurants, churches and businesses once known as “Little Syria” because so many people from Syria and Lebanon settled there in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, extended from the Battery to Liberty St. Now, only three buildings on Washington St. remain — a tenement, a community center and landmarked St. George’s Syrian Catholic Church, which long ago was converted into a restaurant. With photographs, music, a film and a few artifacts, a modest exhibit called “Little Syria, NY” at 3-Legged Dog Art & Technology, on 80 Greenwich St., recalls the old neighborhood. The exhibit was organized by the Arab American National Museum of Dearborn, Michigan and includes lectures and walking tours. It will be on display through May 27. In the 1940s, when Robert Moses decided to build the Brooklyn Battery Tunnel, the city seized much of this area through eminent domain. The construction of the World Trade Center in the 1960s demolished what was left of “Little Syria.” Dr. Robert Madey, 80, a retired physicist, remembers the distinguished cultural life of “Little Syria.” His father, Elia Abu Madi (in the Arabic spelling) was a renowned poet and journalist who emigrated from Lebanon in 1916. “He had an office on Washington St. where he published his daily newspaper — ‘Al-Samir,’” Madey remembers. “He subsequently moved to Atlantic Avenue in Downtown Brooklyn, where he published the paper until his death in 1957.” “Al-Samir” was one of several newspapers published in the Washington St. area. “A group of poets and journalists established The Pen League in 1920 to preserve the Arabic language in their new country,” Madey said. “There were around 18 members. Kahlil Gibran [poet, artist and writer] was the most prominent. The others were journalists.” A photograph of some of the members of The Pen League is in the exhibit as are photos of Madey’s father and copies of his newspaper. Madey said that many of the immigrants from Syria and Lebanon came to the United States to escape from the Ottoman Empire, which then ruled the area. “The majority of the immigrants in the time frame of this exhibit were Christian,” he said. “The Muslim wave didn’t come until maybe the late 1960s. “The immigrants loved this country very, very much,” he said. “They felt that this was their country though they wanted to preserve their culture.” Madey remembers the Atlantic Avenue of his youth, “the stores and the proprietors and the businesses that they had. Many of them came from Washington St. and just moved over to Brooklyn.” The smell of exotic spices wafting from open sacks and barrels no longer lingers on Washington St., but visitors to the exhibit at 3-Legged Dog can lift the lid of a box for a whiff of the past and can hear the music that
Downtown Express photo by Terese Loeb Kreuzer
Dr. Robert Madey, 80, a retired physicist, standing next to a photograph of his father, the renowned poet and journalist, Elia Abu Madi, at an exhibit about “Little Syria,” the former Lower Manhattan neighborhood, which stretched up Washington St.
once resounded in this neighborhood and if they want more, they can go to Atlantic Avenue where (among other Arab businesses) Sahadi’s, a grocery store established on Washington in 1898, still flourishes.
Exhibit Info The exhibit, “Little Syria, NY,” is open daily from 10 a.m, – 6 p.m. at 3-Legged Dog Art & Technology Center, 80 Greenwich St. Free. Through May 27. On Sat., May 18 at 10 a.m., Mary Ann Haick DiNapoli of Friends of the Lower West Side will be leading a 90-minute walking tour called “From Little Syria to Brooklyn’s Atlantic Avenue” leaving from the northwest corner of Court and Remsen Sts., Brooklyn (suggested donation, $20 a person). On Tuesdays and Thursdays, May 16, 21 and 23 at 1 p.m., lunch hour walking tours beginning and ending at 3LD Art & Technology Center, will explore “Downtown’s Lost Neighborhood” (suggested donation, $10 a person). On May 15, Poets House, 10 River Terrace in Battery Park City, will present a free program called “Journey in Words — The Poetry and Prose of Arab New York” at 6:30 p.m. Also free, Dr. Akram Khater, professor of history at North Carolina State University, will lecture on May 20 at 6:30 p.m. on “Little Syria: History to Advocacy.” The lecture, discussing the history of Syrian/Levantine immigration, takes place at The Graduate Center, City University of New York, 365 Fifth Ave., Room 9204/05.
May 15 - May 27, 2013
Simple ways to start solving the school overcrowding problem
Jennifer Goodstein Publisher EMERITUS
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The wait continues for solutions
to Lower Manhattan’s perennial school waitlists. In a sense, the problem is unavoidable, given the city until now has decided not to make accurate population projections Downtown. There’s no sense continuing to beat up the Department of Education when there are real, immediate decisions that the city could make right now to alleviate parents’ anxiety. Number one, send out kindergarten seat offers now for every slot open in Lower Manhattan. As we report this week, there are about 15 openings that are sitting there, while the Education Dept. waits to get answers for everyone. Every day that goes by without an offer is another day of unnecessary pain for 110 families. Some are looking to move out of an area that the city, state and federal government have been working for decades to grow — an effort that took on a renewed urgency in the years after the Sept. 11 attacks. Number two, decide right now how many more temporary classrooms you are going to open at Tweed Courthouse. This decision alone has the potential to solve the entire problem — it certainly could put a huge dent in it. The Education Dept. has not yet even considered this solution which is literally under their noses in their own headquarters. The building is being used as temporary space for the Peck Slip School. The school, when it opens in 2015, will be able to accommodate five kindergarten classes, but now it
can only take in two per year in temporary space. That means the school could potentially accommodate three more classes—75 students — if more classroom space were found. Number three, propose a plan for P.S 150 that parents support. Even if there are merits to the idea of moving the non-zoned Tribeca school to Chelsea — a point we’re not at all conceding — but even if there are good reasons to do it, the timing of the proposal was disastrous, making a horrible overcrowding situation worse. A solution to this problem will reduce the waiting lists at the other Lower Manhattan schools. Incoming P.S. 150 parents expecting to get a small neighborhood school have had their long-term plans upset. Parents are now being pitted against parents as these families naturally look for space in other Lower Manhattan schools. At the very least, the current P.S. 150 community, including incoming kindergarteners, deserves an assurance that they will continue to have seats in their current building or a suitable site in Lower Manhattan. That may not satisfy all families, but we were pleased to see that the P.S. 150 parents who attended Tuesday night’s Community Board 1 committee meeting generally supported the board’s resolution to find a new Lower Manhattan location for a larger P.S. 150. We were glad to see Assembly Speaker Sheldon Silver press the city to speed up its
timetable for quicker answers. His critics will no doubt see this as Silver unfairly throwing his weight around, but the fact is the population growth in Lower Manhattan is unique to the city, and Downtown is lucky to have such a powerful advocate. The Dept. of Education should not let one more day go by without actively pursuing every potential school location that the dedicated members of Silver’s task force have suggested. Last Friday, at Silver’s school meeting, one of the waitlisted parents invited the D.O.E. to come to explain to her daughter why the girl can’t continue at her school after pre-K. Officials can make 109 other visits like that, or they can start making some of those families happy now.
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To The Editor: I don’t find anything ceremonial about the topping of a spire of a building that was hardly liked by the people (Posted DowntownExpress.com, May 2, “Last spire piece reaches top of 1 W.T.C.— assembly required”). Not only is this so-called One World Trade Center truly not the tallest building in the hemisphere, but not in the nation, or the state. The main reason why I don’t appreciate this building is because of the fact that it was built in the fear of a terrorist attack rather than having back what was taken us from that day, which was the Twin Towers, making it nothing
more than a bad replacement. In reality, we really did let the terrorists change us on 9/11 by allowing for this to be built. Just imagine if this was the Empire State Building or Statue of Liberty that was destroyed and those in charge said that they didn’t want them rebuilt either because they would claim it would be disrespectful to those that died, or that it would just become another target. Tal Barzilai
Religious education To The Editor: I have taken note of the report of “No Charter Member” on your
website (UnderCover, May 1 – 14). I appreciate that your website exposes the fraudulent letter of intent submitted by Miss Wang Tongwen (Dr. Lotus King Weiss). However, I’d also like to point out two critical misconceptions in your report: One, Falun Gong is not a controversial practice; two, Miss Wang Tongwen is not a genuine Falun Gong practitioner. Many democratic countries in the world, including allies of the Chinese Communist Party, recognize Falun Dafa (Falun Gong), and in these countries Falun Dafa are free to practice and spread. Falun Dafa is one of the mainstream beliefs in most countries except communist China. Falun Dafa (minghui.org and Clearwisdom.net) has issued a note and clearly declared that
Miss Wang Tongwen is not a true Falun Gong practitioner. Wang Tongwen claims that she wants to spread the doctrine (teaching) of Confucius, but it is well known that Confucius is an atheist (Analects of Confucius clearly says that he does not believe in God). Falun Dafa practitioners are theists, who worship Falun Gong founder Li Hongzhi and his teachings “Zhuan Falun”. It is impossible for a true Falun Dafa practitioner to try to spread Confucius’ atheism. We are grateful for your kind attention to Falun Dafa and its cause. We hope your can post our open letter to clarify the situation. Juliana Song Flushing, New York
May 15 - May 27, 2013
Taste of Tribeca helps the neighborhood schools B y K aitlyn M eade Nineteen years ago, two schools in Tribeca hit upon an idea that went beyond the standard P.T.A. bakesale to bring their community out in support of school arts programs. This year, Taste of Tribeca, the culinary street fair, will be back again with 75 participating restaurants to raise vital support money for arts and entitlement programs at P.S. 234 and P.S. 150. “For the past 19 years, Taste of Tribeca has been the biggest single fundraiser for both of the schools,” said P.S. 150’s Taste of Tribeca cochairperson Hope Flamm. “This year is the biggest ever. The fact that 75 restaurants have signed up and have been very generous with their time and attention is amazing for us.” They’ll be setting up tables along Duane St. between Greenwich and Hudson Sts. from 11:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, May 18. The fair has expanded to include family entertainment and other offerings. There will be live music provided by City Winery and a Kids Zone that will feature face painting, clowns, a balloon artist, a children’s acting troupe and a martial arts demo. “Because of all the budget cuts over the last four years, the money that comes in is invaluable. It goes to art, music programs, some dance programs,” said P.S. 234’s co-chairperson Naomi Daniels. “Without
these funds, we wouldn’t necessarily be able to have these programs.” This is Daniels third year as a chair for the event. Daniels’ three children attend P.S. 234, and she said her daughter just performed her dance and music for the class and her son is playing saxophone in the school’s concert — activities made possible by support from Taste. At P.S. 150, Flamm said that the event has helped provide for a ballroom dance program, a creative dance program, storytelling, creative writing and science programs. P.S. 150 has also been a part of an architect in residence program for the past two years. Many of the small school’s extra programs are funded by the P.T.A., such as hiring assistant teachers to help out in classrooms. The dedication to parent involvement and enrichment programs draws a large number of parents to apply for kindergarten seats every year at P.S. 150, which is the only non-zoned traditional public school below Canal St. However, a recent proposal by the city Department of Education may move the school out of their Greenwich St. address and into a larger location in the former Foundling Hospital building in Chelsea. The vote has been pushed back until September, said Flamm, but parents are still rallying to get sup-
Image courtesy of Jack Berman Photography
Students from P.S. 150 and 234 made signs to thank volunteers at last year’s Taste of Tribeca.
port to stay in the neighborhood, not least because of Taste of Tribeca. “If P.S. 150 were to move, it would be a big change in how Taste of Tribeca would be run,” Flamm said, adding that she could not say more as there are no defined plans yet. “We’re concentrating right now on Taste of Tribeca for this year.” “A lot of our community comes out. It really is one of our best events in Tribeca,” she said.
Taste’s chefs dish on foods they love & cooking teur chefs make? It’s really important to be well organized and passionate about your cooking. Becoming a good chef requires many years of hard work and culinary experiences before one truly earns the title of Chef.
Continued from page 1
Over 70 restaurants will be bringing their signature styles to the 19th annual culinary extravaganza to raise money for arts and enrichment programs at Tribeca’s P.S. 150 and P.S. 234. The event tales place on Sat., May 18 from 11:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., rain or shine. In addition to an abundance of food, there will be family-friendly activities, cooking demonstrations and even a few wine tastings. General Taste Tickets, which entitle the holder to admission and six tastings, are $50, $45 in advance. Premium offerings are also available. Visit www.tasteoftribeca.com for more info.
Kamal Rose, Chef
Tribeca Grill 375 Greenwich St. 212-941-3900 myriadrestaurantgroup.com/tribeca_grill What dish are you serving at Taste of Tribeca and why? We’ll be serving a hearty Batter-Up Fried Chicken and Jalapeno Corn Bread, in tribute to the baseball season and to summer. I prepare it with love, and our guests really enjoy it. If you ordered this in your restaurant, what other dishes, wine or beverage would you pair it with? It’s wonderful with Sweet Action Six
What was your worst cooking injury? Cooking in a professional kitchen is physically demanding, but it is truly what I love to do. Once, I twisted my knee working the grill station, but it’s like being an athlete, always trying to do your best.
Point Beer, but also can be enjoyed with your favorite summer wines and beverages. Who was the first person who taught you to cook, and what’s the best thing you learned from him or her? My grandmother was a good cook, using simple, fresh ingredients to create wonderful, savory meals. She had a great influence on me, and from her I learned how to season and taste. What was your favorite food growing up? I grew up on St. Vincent and The Grenadines, and loved a local specialty, Conch ceviche. What’s the one utensil or cooking tool an amateur chef should splurge on? A good professional kitchen knife is indispensable. What’s the most common mistake ama-
tion of our many dessert wines, maybe a Moscato d’Asti. Who taught you to cook? My grandmother was a wonderful baker from Eastern Europe. Unfortunately she never used recipes; it was all by touch. She made the most amazing Lemon Bars.
If you knew it was your last meal, what would you eat and drink? Conch ceviche with an ice cold pilsner is totally enjoyable. I can picture myself on the beach enjoying that with my son, Tristan, and it makes me nostalgic for my own childhood.
Henry Meer, Chef
City Hall Restaurant 131 Duane St. 212-227-7777 www.cityhallnewyork.com Dish served? We always serve an awesome selection of ice creams and sorbets. They have been a hit with the kids (and adults). We make them specially for the Taste. Who doesn’t LOVE homemade ice cream and sorbets? Beverage/dish pairing? If I was a kid, I would order a plate of City Hall cookies and a glass of milk. If I was a parent, I would order a selec-
Favorite food growing up? Growing up in Manhattan my favorite foods were pizza, Pastrami sandwiches from the Second Avenue Deli, kosher hot dogs, egg creams from Dave’s Corner and Chinese food. Splurge utensil? In today’s world it should be a Vita Mixer. This mixer can make everything from soups, and sauces, to fresh raw juices. Twenty years ago it would have been a sharp knife and peeler. Continued on page 22
May 15 - May 27, 2013
Taste of Tribeca chefs dish up some cooking tips Continued from page 21
Common mistake Not caramelizing (browning) their protein, and making sure their knives are sharp.
Last drink? Whatever it would be, it would be neat (no ice).
Ricky Estralado, Chef
Alan Rodriguez, Chef
Cooking injury? Other than the occasional cut and burn, I have been very fortunate and cautious and have avoided any serious injuries.
Dish served? This year we’re serving cupcakes in assorted flavors as well as whoopee pies. We do the cupcakes because they have been a crowd pleaser every year, but this year whoopee pies are new for us at Taste of Tribeca. We decided to do them, because they’re quickly becoming one of our most popular treats!
Madeline Lanciani, Chef/owner Nobu 105 Hudson St. 212-219-0500 www.noburestaurants.com Los Americanos 305 Church St. 212-680-0101 losamericanos.com
Duane Park Patisserie 179 Duane St. 212-274-8447 www.duaneparkpatisserie.com Dish served? Molten Chocolate Cake with bittersweet chocolate sauce — because everyone loves it!
Dish served? Ceviche de Pulpo — it’s very unusual to serve Octopus Ceviche, and most people have not had it before. Just about everyone who tries it really loves it. Beverage/dish pairing? Our cocktail Under the Volcano pairs beautifully as well as the guacamole with plantain chips.
Beverage/dish pairing? We do not sell this retail. We supply caterers with this dessert — it is our best seller!
Who taught you to cook? My mom was the one. Her dish that makes me crazy and reminds me of when I was a kid is Manitas de Puerco or trotter as you call them here. I make them now based on her recipe.
Who taught you to cook? My mother — she was a slow food cook before anyone knew what that meant. she taught me everything.
Favorite food growing up? Other than Manitas de Puerco, I really love eating Tacos al Pastor, which is why I have it on the menu at Los Americanos.
Favorite food growing up? Anything my mother cooked (seriously). Splurge utensil? A very good knife, preferably carbon steel blade. Common mistake? Following the recipe. Cooking injury? Third-degree burn from hot caramel sugar while making 6- 4 foot tall croquembouche. Last meal? I would cook a simple meal — whatever I was hungry for that day — and drink a great red burgundy. Last meal? Soft scrambled eggs, buttered rye toast.
Splurge utensil? Serving spoons — I hate tongs. That is one of things that Waldy Malouf passed on to me as well. Common mistake? They are afraid to season the food enough. You have to be bold and also not hold back from trying again when you make mistakes. Cooking injury? A burned shoulder — my sous chef was carrying a pot of green pea soup and ran into me at The Mark, it burned my shoulder badly and that’s why I have a tattoo in that spot now. Last meal? A magnum of Merlot, and a Parellada Argentina, made by me.
Dish served? We’ll be proudly serving one of our signature dishes, the Black Cod with Miso. It’s a dish that Nobu’s guests love, and always request. Beverage/dish pairing? My preference and recommendation is to pair it with sake. We have a great selection of sakes. Who taught you to cook? My mom was a very good cook, and she taught me how to prepare a traditional Filipino dish of Pork and Chicken Adobo. Favorite food growing up? I grew up in the Philippines, where “Lechon,” a whole roasted pig, was very popular. It was very flavorful, and a particular favorite of mine. Splurge utensil? I recommend the purchase of quality pots and pans. It’s a good investment. Common mistake? I enjoy food that has vivid flavors, and that is what we serve at Nobu. Amateur chefs should be careful not to under-season their food. Cooking injury? What was your worst cooking injury? I’ve been pretty fortunate not to ever have to make a trip to the hospital. Any chef who slices and dices will end up with little nicks, but I’ve thankfully avoided most occupational hazards. Last meal? In additional to all of the delectable dishes we prepare at Nobu, my wife and I would enjoy a single malt scotch with the best suckling pig from Spain.
Rachel Thebault, Chef/owner Tribeca Treats 94 Reade St. 212-571-0500 www.tribecatreats.com
Who taught you to cook? Both my parents loved to cook, and I remember helping them from a very early age. My dad was a strict recipe follower, and my mom NEVER even opened a cookbook. I think that combo set me up for where I am today, as a lot of precision is needed in baking, but I’m not afraid to get creative in coming up with new flavor ideas or spin offs on old favorites. Favorite food growing up? People are always shocked when I say I have never had much of a sweet tooth. Growing up, my birthday dinner of choice was steak, baked potato and spinach salad — still a favorite meal of mine. Regarding desserts, though, I do have a weakness for dishes involving peanut butter, banana or marshmallow! Splurge utensil? For a real splurge, and if you have the space, a Kitchenaid standing mixer will transform your home baking experience. For less of a splurge, an offset spatula or a few pastry bags and piping tips — all of those can come in handy both for desserts and making beautiful hors d’ouevres. Common mistake? Not reading a recipe in its entirety before launching into it. It is so important to prep yourself by understanding the ingredients, equipment, timing and skills needed for a recipe before you get going on it. Cooking injury? I have suffered so many burns on my hands and forearms, they’re practically immune to heat, but fortunately I’ve had nothing major. Continued on page 23
May 15 - May 27, 2013
Tribeca chefs talk about food for customers, you are already professional.
Jung Sik Yim, Chef
al driven white wine such as Greece’s Assyrtiko that we have by the glass at Jungsik. As for other dishes, I’d like to recommend choosing an appetizer, seafood, meat and dessert along with this rice dish to complete a five course menu. This dish will be served on its own.
Continued from page 22
Last meal? This is really hard to narrow down, as I love so many different foods, but whatever it was I’d want to eat it in the company of 8-10 great friends and have copious amounts of nice wine.
Masaharu Morimoto, Chef
Cooking injury? During an Iron Chef show, I cut a finger with crab’s spine. That was my worst cooking injury.
Who taught you to cook? My mother has taught be how to cook. I learned how to make kimchi jjigae (kimchi stew) from her.
Last meal? Delicious Japanese cooked white rice and Morimoto Junmai sake.
Luis Nieto, Chef
Favorite food growing up? My favorite foods include kimchi, raw fish and seaweed. Too many to list, but those three have to be on the top five. Splurge utensil? A solid sauté pan. Don’t get thin, cheap ones or non-stick coated one.
Jungsik 2 Harrison St. 212-219-0900 jungsik.kr
Tribeca Canvas 313 Church St. 917-720-2845 tribecacanvasnyc.com Dish served? Hamachi Taco, which is yellowtail sashimi with guacamole and yuzu kosho (Japanese spicy condiment, made from Yuzu, Japanese citrus) in Mexican Taco. This is one of my typical “global” dishes. Beverage/dish pairing? My private label sake, the Daiginjo with its smooth body and hints of star anise would compliment nicely with the Hamachi and crispy gyoza skin.
The Palm 206 West St. 646-395-6393 www.thepalm.com/Tribeca Dish served? We are serving a Philly Cheese Steak on pretzel bread because we wanted to offer something new, similar to our new lunch menu Philly Cheese Steak, and give the Taste of Tribeca a new, fun dish from The Palm. Beverage/dish pairing? I’m a personal lover of Kamen and Trefethen, which go great with this type of meat dish.
Who taught you to cook? I have never thought somebody taught me to cook. I learned by myself by exposing myself to various types of cuisine.
Who taught you to cook? I learned from my father who is a chef as well, I remember the first French onion soup we made together, I was probably 10.
Favorite food growing up? Nothing in particular. When I was a kid, Japan was in the difficult time right after the World War II. I was poor and always hungry. That’s why everything I ate tasted delicious for me. There was not enough food variety to choose from. I sometimes even ate sugar as a snack.
Favorite food growing up? We had these corn biscuits that were dipped in hot chocolate called “bizcochos,” they were to die for!
Splurge utensil? It is depends on the chef. If the chef has some experience, I would recommend he splurge on knives. But if the chef is young without much experience, he/she should rather spend time and money to gain experiences, whether eating good food, trying out different cooking styles, learning various cooking techniques, etc. Common mistake? Thinking “amateur” is a big mistake. If you are a chef, which means you are cooking
Splurge utensil? A tasting spoon, new chefs should focus on and always taste what their cooks are putting in front of them. Common mistake? Under ordering and understaffing. Cooking injury? Slicing off my finger nail on a cook-off event right after 9/11. Last meal? I would ask my mom to cook me her rice and chicken stew served with the fresh fruit shakes she used to do for us growing up.
Dish served? Miyeok. It is considered a birthday meal in Korea consisting of miyeok (seaweed) soup, rice and kimchi. I’d like to represent a traditional Korean dish in an unconventional way. Beverage/dish pairing? I’d ask the sommelier to pair a light, miner-
Common mistake? They always over-prepare and over-serve food. I don’t believe in waste. Cooking injury? None! Last meal? Fried chicken with draft beer. Continued on page 24
A tremendous dining experience. Tim at the lead with Frankie and Dino covering your every need is a formidable team. Johnny at the bar makes it feel like you just walked into your very living room. The people make the experience.
Daniel C., Ashburn, VA Yelp.com
May 15 - May 27, 2013
Chefs share cooking tips Continued from page 23
Zhenjiang Cao, Chef
Beverage/dish pairing? Since it’s a meat dish, I suggest to pair it with our Enoki Mushroom and Green Papaya Salad and the Italian Nebbiolo. Who taught you to cook? Mr. Zhenchuan Lu. The best thing I learned from him is how to be a reasonable person. Favorite food growing up? Chili Stir-Fried Chicken and Hot Pot Pig Blood. Splurge utensil? A nice wok. Common mistake? How to control the heat.
Lotus Blue 110 Reade Street 212-267-3777 lotusbluebar.com Dish served? Lemongrass Grilled Chicken on Skewers. Because it’s one of the representations of the Yunnan cuisine we serve at Lotus Blue.
Cooking injury? Burn, of course! Last meal? I will eat and drink nothing.
Thomas Higuchi-Crowell, Chef Kutsher’s Tribeca 186 Franklin St. 212-431-0606 kutsherstribeca.com
Dish served? Kutsher’s House Smoked Pastrami on Rye with cole slaw and sour pickles. Why — because we want to showcase our signature sandwich which encompasses our brand’s DNA, is classic NYC, melts in your mouth and is a great introduction to our restaurant. Beverage pairing? If I ordered the pastrami sandwich in my restaurant, I would also get an order of crispy artichokes and a glass of housemade Cel-Ray soda or a pint of Sixpoint Righteous Ale. Who taught you to cook? My mother was my original cooking and baking teacher. She started me off at the age of 4 and to this day her best words of wisdom were, “How you feel shows in your food, so cook with love and happiness and all will go well.” Favorite food growing up? My favorite foods growing up unfortunately are still my favorite foods. But they have become nicer, better, and fortunately not any healthier. My top foods were in no particular order: grilled cheese, hot dogs, stew of any kind, and of course DESSERT.
Splurge utensil? The one tool that all people interested in kitchen work need is a good chefs’ knife. Once you have that, you can really do anything with it. For some things, you may want a smaller knife, but it’s not really necessary. After that, I would say the “Food Lover’s Companion.” It’s pretty much like my bible. Common mistake? The most common mistake new chefs make is on seasoning. A lot of chefs forget to taste after they season. How do you know if you over or under seasoned if you don’t taste the final product? Cooking injury? My worst cooking injury would be the time I cut my hand on a bandsaw meant for cutting through whole animals like cows. I was very close to taking my thumb off. Last meal? My last meal would be a prime rib eye steak cooked medium rare, creamed spinach and an entire chocolate layer cake washed down with a bottle of Cheval Blanc. Of course, I would also
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Continued on page 30
May 15 - May 27, 2013
BY Maeve gately & scott stiffler
THE SCHOLASTIC STORE H e l d e v e r y S a t u r d a y a t 3 p m , S c h o l a s t i c ’s i n - s t o r e a c t i v i t i e s a r e d e s i g n e d to get kids reading, thinking, talking, creating and moving. At 11am every Tues., Wed. and Thurs., the Scholastic Storyteller brings tales to life at Daily Storytime. At 557 Broadway (btw. Prince & Spring Sts.). Store hours: Mon.-Sat., 10am-7pm and Sun., 11am-6pm. For info, call 212-343-6166 or visit scholastic.com/sohostore. THE CHILDREN’S ROOM AT POETS HOUSE is a bright and vibrant space that encourages literacy and creativity. In addition to housing many poetry books by classic and contemporary authors, the Children’s Room is designed to stimulate the imaginations of young ones and drive them to create poems and art of their own. From Thurs.-Sat., children are free to draw inspiration from the room’s card catalogue full of quirky objects and type up their own masterpieces on vintage typewriters. Every Thurs. at 10am, “Tiny Poet Time” offers poetry readings and music for toddlers. At 10 River Terrace (at Murray St.). Hours: Children’s Room open Thurs.-Sat., 11am-5pm. Admission: Free. For info, call 212-431-7920 or visit poetshouse.org. SATURDAY FAMILY PROGRAMS AT THE SKYSCRAPER MUSEUM Explore tall buildings as objects of design, products of technology, sites of construction and places of work and residence at The Skyscraper Museum. Their spring “Saturday Family Program” series (taking place from 10:30-11:45am) features workshops designed to introduce children and their families to the principles of architecture and engineering through hands-on activities. On May 25, “Body Buildings: Woolworth” gives kids ages 3-9 the chance to turn their silhouettes into buildings, working together to make a unique New York City skyline. On June 8, the all-ages “Sidewalk Art” event takes place in front of the museum — where colorful chalk will be used to draw buildings based on blueprint sketches of buildings they know. And on June 10, the “Archikids” workshop, lead by architect Yves Roger, gives kids ages 9-13 the chance to make their own soaring structures (inspired by images, vintage film and models of actual skyscrapers of the past and present) All workshops ($5 per family) take place at 10:30am. Registration is required. Call 212-945-6324 or firstname.lastname@example.org. At 39 Battery Place (btw. First Place & Little West St.). Regular museum hours are Wed.-Sun., 12-6pm. Admission is $5 ($2.50 for students/seniors). TRINITY CHURCH PRESENTS FAMILY FRIDAY PIZZA & MOVIE NIGHT Every so often, every family should get together for pizza and a movie. To help make that noble goal a regular thing, Trinity Wall Street hosts this third-Friday-of-the-month event for kids who are hungry (for food and entertainment) and adults who are too tired to cook (or even dial for delivery!). On May 17, it’s Dr. Seuss’ “The Lorax.” On June 21, it’s the Steven Spielberg classic “E.T.” Free. From 6-7:30pm, at Charlotte’s Place (107 Greenwich St., rear of 74 Trinity Place, btw. Rector & Carlisle Sts.). For more info, call 212-602-0800 or visit trinitywallstreet.org/calendar. Twitter: @CharlottesPlc. Facebook,: facebook.com/CharlottesPlaceNYC.
La MaMa KIDS Shadow puppets, dance, music, storytelling and mask-making for youngsters and their families all figure into the schedule of events that are part of “La MaMa Kids.” This new series of creative workshops, La MaMa’s first such regular series of programming for family audiences, is sure to inspire a love of theater — and likely help launch a whole new generation of theatrical performers! The next installment in the series happens on Sat., June 8. Perry Yung will lead a “Mindful Music” workshop, in which families will learn to use traditional Japanese instruments, craft their own and tell a story (at La MaMa’s Ellen Stewart Theatre, 66 E. 4th St., 2nd floor, btw. Bowery & Second Ave.). All workshops take place at 11am. Admission is $10 per family. For a full schedule of events and more info, call 212-475-7710 or visit lamama.org. THE CHILDREN’S MUSEUM OF THE ARTS The Museum celebrates its quarter century of promoting self-expression and esteem — by presenting a new exhibit that offers a fascinating exploration of self-identity through still, moving and living portraits, as portrayed by children using traditional methods of painting and drawing, as well as technology. On view through June 9, “Face to Face” features 40 portraits selected from CMA’s Permanent Collection of children’s art from over 50 countries, dating back to the 1930s. To incorporate CMA’s philosophy of hands-on art-making, the exhibit will be accompanied by a variety of interactive installations that examine the texture, shape and sound of portraits. Hands-on stations encourage visitors to become part of the exhibit, including reimagined versions of a typical self-portrait station. At the CMA Media Lab, visitors can take photos that will be projected on the wall. These photos will stream into a montage that will be accessioned into the collection and will also serve as a fascinating time-lapse of the exhibit as a whole. At 103 Charlton St. Hours: Mon. & Wed., 12-5pm; Thurs. & Fri., 12-6pm; Sat. & Sun., 10am5pm. Admission: $11 (Seniors and 0-12 months, free from 4-6pm). Thursdays are pay-as-you-wish. For info, call 212274-0986 or visit cmany.org T.A.G. (TEEN ART GALLERY) EXHIBITION Determined to overcome “the limiting environment assigned to us because of our age,” the prolific members of T.A.G. (Teen Art Gallery) make their own opportunities by helping young artists navigate the process of showing in a gallery setting. Their current Chelsea exhibition consists of work rendered in black and white, and features contributions from Lisbeth Checo, Mindy Zou, Morris Reeves, Mary Walker Rippe, Kevin Nguyen, Maya Moverman, Phoebe Kaufman, Clara Lu, Teri Minogue, Jasmine Clarke, Sungwon Hong, Alika Feldman, Arielle Trenk and Robin Krupnick. From July 11-20, T.A.G. will present a second exhibition at Chashama — featuring a wide range of work from artists across the country, as well as a selection of creative writing and the introduction of the group’s YouTube channel (featuring several videos). Plans are currently being solidified, so visit teenartgallery.org for updates.. A free exhibition, “T.A.G. in Black and White,” is on view through June 8, at HiArt! (227 W. 29th St., btw. 7th & 8th Aves., buzzer 400). Gallery Hours: Mon.-Fri., 3-6pm. To arrange a private viewing outside normal gallery hours, call 212-209-1552.
Photo by Sarah Cassell
BATTERY PARK CITY DAY NURSERY HAYRIDE Past and present students will be lining up for a horse-drawn hayride, Lower Manhattan-style — when Battery Park City Day Nursery hosts its 26th Annual Hayride event (featuring face painting while you wait for your turn!). The fiveminute ride takes you around the Rector Place oval on both sides. Thurs., May 30, from 3:30-6:00pm. At 215 South End Ave. (btw. Albany St. & Rector Place). Alumni, future students, friends and neighborhood supporters are welcome. The $5 (per person) donation benefits the Nursery’s Enrichment programs. Children under one year of age ride for free, when (of course!) accompanied by a parent or adult guardian. For more info, visit bpcdaynursery.com.
May 15 - May 27, 2013
Rhyme Machine Kid Lucky and La MaMa celebrate ‘the art of human noise’ AMERICAN HUMAN BEATBOX FESTIVAL 2013 Fri., May 24, 10pm: Beatrhyme Battle Sat., May 25, 11am: La MaMa Kids: Beatbox Workshop Sat., May 25, 10pm: Vocal Wars: Hip Hop Team Battle Sun., May 26, 5:30pm: “Nos States” (film) Sun., May 26, 8pm: Baba Israel and Playback NYC: Tribute to Steve Ben Israel At La MaMa The Club, 74A E. 4th St. (btw. Bowery & 2nd Ave.). May 25 Workshop, 2nd floor of The Annex (66-68 E. 4th St.) Tickets: $10 in advance, $20 at door ($15 for students/seniors) Workshop: $10 per family (in advance & at door) Film: $10 (in advance & at door) Reservations: 212-475-7710 or lamama.org
BY TOM TENNEY In a 1913 letter to the composer Francesco Balilla Pratella, Italian Futurist Luigi Russolo declared, “The variety of noises is infinite…today we have perhaps a thousand different machines, and can distinguish a thousand different noises, tomorrow, as new machines multiply, we will be able to distinguish ten, twenty, or thirty thousand different noises, not merely in a simply imitative way, but to combine them according to our imagination.” This letter, which became a known as “The Art of Noises,” advocated a new sonic vocabulary through the imitation of machines — and became one of the
Photo courtesy of the artist and La MaMa
Kid Lucky, at the 2011 La MaMa World Block Party.
most important manifestos in the history of sound. As technological advances at the turn of the century paved the way for a revolution in mass media, they also created new possibilities for individual expression. By mid-century, the computer had opened new sonic territory by permitting an unprecedented extension of sounds and scales, pushing the boundaries of music beyond what the Futurists ever imagined. In 1983, 70 years after Russolo’s letter, a British avant-garde electronic group that called itself The Art of Noise (after the manifesto) released a song that mixed sampled sounds of car engines and industrial machinery with time-warped drum beats and orchestral stabs. This song would become one of the most influential instrumentals in the world of hip-hop, sampled by artists from X-Clan to Marky Mark. The name of that song was “Beat Box.” A year later, an 18-year-old rapper from Harlem by the name of Doug E. Fresh pioneered the art of imitating
electronic drum machines using only his voice. The art of “beatboxing” was born, and the verity of Russolo’s vision was, once again, affirmed. As do all musical genres, beatboxing has evolved in the intervening three decades, spawning a variety of techniques — including the “human turntable” (a style invented by Wise of the group Stetsasonic) and “mouth drumming” (developed by Wes Carroll). From May 24-26, the Third Annual American Human Beatbox Festival at La MaMa Theatre will give New Yorkers the opportunity to sample some of the most eclectic beatboxing styles by artists who make percussive rhythms with the human voice. This three-day exhibition of performances, workshops and film kicks off on Friday night with a battle, not of beatboxers, but beatrhymers — performers who beatbox and rhyme at the same time. Beatrhyming was developed and popularized by the festival’s curator, Kid Lucky,
who coined the term, and who characterizes the new style as one that allows the performer to move beyond simply providing a beat. Beatrhyming adds language — poetry, rap, song, spoken word — to the vocal effects, freeing the piece to take off in new directions. “Beatboxers listen to the beat,” Lucky explains, “Emcees listen to the words. With beatrhyming, we listen to the whole concept of the song.” Kid Lucky isn’t the first to beatrhyme, and readily acknowledges those who went before him — like Biz Markie, Darren Robinson of the Fat Boys and Rahzel of the Roots, who astonished hip-hop audiences by beatboxing and singing the chorus simultaneously on “If Your Mother Only Knew.” For the most part, however, Lucky has seen beatboxers use beatrhyming mainly as a musical machination, a trick for cheap applause. Lucky, who began beatrhyming in the mid-90s, saw the potential to elevate Continued on page 27
May 15 - May 27, 2013
Beatrhymers battle, at La MaMa Continued from page 26
the style into an art form in its own right. “People used beatrhyming as a trick, or a gimmick,” he says, “I saw it as something much more than that. I saw the possibilities to take the concept and push it beyond the boundaries of what anybody else is doing. That’s how you move from gimmick to art.” He’s also quick to point out that beatrhyming doesn’t necessarily mean rapping, but can include a number of vocal styles (such as singing and spoken word). When La MaMa approached Kid Lucky to curate the first beatboxing festival in 2010, he saw an opportunity to challenge traditional notions of beatboxing, and bring his innovations to a wider audience, many of whom still maintain rigid definitions of beatboxing as a human emulation of technology. While he recognizes the cultural roots of beatboxing as “man-imitating-machine,” Lucky sees beatrhyming as an opportunity to reintroduce the human element, or “soul,” back into the art. “Beatboxing, which began by imitating the Roland 808 drum machine, is more concerned with the electronic aspect,” he explains, “but as beatboxing moves further, it emphasizes the soul and the feeling as opposed to the technical aspect of it.” For Kid Lucky, the next step in the
advancement of beatrhyming is handing his skills down to a new generation of performers. He teaches weekly beatrhyming workshops at Midtown’s famous Funkadelic Studios, and plans to develop them into a school of what he calls “Mixed Vocal Arts” — an institution that will teach not only his signature style, but also an entire array of vocal techniques including humming, whistling, scatting, vocal sound effects, singing, spoken word, yodeling, rapping and Tuvan throat singing. The concept of the school was born of Lucky’s frustration with the limited number of styles represented in universities and professional training schools. Scat singing, for example, a uniquely American form of jazz vocalization popularized by Ella Fitzgerald in the 1950s, isn’t taught at most universities. “With scatting, Ella Fitzgerald became a whole entire instrument right there, and people went crazy,” Lucky said. “Why would you stop doing that? Why would you stop pushing that type of situation forward?” Those who wish to experience this “pushing forward” in person should check out the beatrhyming battle on May 24, where the performers will include D-Cross, Kid Lucky, Kaila, Graffiti, Richard, Esalaah, Kenny Urban, Mandibul, Menyu and Baba Israel. Saturday morning, bring your baby
Photo courtesy of the artist
Rabbi Darkside, one of the May 25 Vocal Wars warriors.
beatboxers to the Kids Beatbox Workshop, and then come back for the emcee/beatboxer team battles at 10pm. Sunday offerings include “Nos States” — a documentary about French beatboxer Princeps, followed by a tribute to the late Steve Ben Israel. It’ll be a unique celebration of music, beats, words and the art of human noise.
Tom Tenney is a performer, producer, sound artist and founder of the annual RE/Mixed Media Festival in Brooklyn, NY (remixnyc.com). He currently teaches media theory at Hofstra University in Hempstead, NY. Follow him on Twitter at @tomtenney, or follow his blog at inc.ongruo.us.
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May 15 - May 27, 2013
Buhmann on Art Our critic’s top gallery picks
Image courtesy of the artist and Lori Bookstein Fine Art.
Installation Shot courtesy of The Drawing Center, photo by Cathy Carver.
Elena Sisto: “At Midnight” (2010, oil on linen, 36 x 40 inches).
This vitrine contains various Giosetta Fioroni drawings, including some from her childhood as well as images representing a performance she did in 1968. On view through June 2, at The Drawing Center.
Courtesy of the artist and Metro Pictures
Sara VanDerBeek: “Roman Women VIII” (2013, 2 Digital C-Prints, 20 x 16 inches-each image size; 50.8 x 40.6 cm, 20 1/2 x 16 3/8 inches (each frame size), 52.1 x 41.6 cm. Edition of 3.
BY STEPHANIE BUHMANN
ELENA SISTO: BETWEEN THE SILVER LIGHT AND ORANGE SHADOW
Sisto’s first solo show with the gallery serves as the final venue for the traveling museum exhibition of the same title. For the last three years, Sisto’s paintings have explored the formative years of young women artists. Most show three-quarter profiles of women against the backdrop of the studio or while partially hidden behind the canvas. These intimate depictions offer deep insight into the psychology of each sitter. Though abstracted, Sisto’s subjects maintain unique personalities and dispositions that hint at the possibility of narrative. Through May 25, at Lori Bookstein Fine Art (138 10th Ave., btw. 18th & 19th Sts.). Hours: Tues.-Sat., 10:30am-6pm. Call 212750-0949 or visit loribooksteinfineart.com.
GIOSETTA FIORONI: L’ARGENTO
Curated by Claire Gilman, this exhibition is Fioroni’s first solo show in North America.
It features over 80 works by the Italian artist, dating from the 1950s to the mid-1970s. In her drawings, paintings, films, theater designs and illustrations, Fioroni responded to the increasingly commercial culture of her time. However, in contrast to the American Pop artists, her focus remained on hand-rendering images rather than deriving them from commercial advertisements. Born in 1932, Fioroni was the only female member of the Scuola di Piazza del Popolo — a group of artists that emerged in Rome during the 1960s. She continues to live and work in Rome. Through June 2, at The Drawing Center (35 Wooster St., btw. Broome & Grand Sts.). Hours: Wed, Fri.-Sun., 12-6pm. and Thurs., 12-8pm. Call 212-219-2166 or visit drawingcenter.org.
In her first solo show with the gallery, VanDerBeek presents new photographs and sculptures that explore the translation of memory into image and form. Her research stems from recent travels to Paris, Rome and Naples — where she explored archeological
Courtesy of Feature Inc., New York
Dike Blair: “Dance Dance Dance” (2011; paint on wood, framed mixed media on paper; 72 x 55 x 216”).
sites and museum collections of classical and neoclassical sculpture. Largely inspired by ancient female figures, VanDerBeek has created, among others, a group of photographs of large marble and metal female figures, colorized with blue and pink Plexiglas, that are seen opposite a colonnade of rectilinear modular forms. Through June 8, at Metro Pictures (519 W. 24th St., btw. 10th & 11th Aves.). Hours: Tues.-Sat., 10am-6pm. Call 212-2067100 or visit metropicturesgallery.com.
DIKE BLAIR: SCULPTURE
Blair’s sculptures are assemblages. They are comprised of painted wooden shipping
crates, which in the past have contained framed gouache paintings or objects like Noguchi lamps. While the abstract geometric aspects of Blair’s work evoke a range of modernist movements, including the De Stijl, it remains very much rooted in the here and now. Conceptually, these sculptures address notions of storage, furniture and the human body. They bring attention to the banal and transitory details of everyday life, feeling both personal and mediated. Through June 2, at Feature Inc. (131 Allen St., btw. Delancey & Rivington Sts.). Hours: Wed.-Sun., 12-6pm. Call 212-6757772 or visit featureinc.com
May 15 - May 27, 2013
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NOTICE TO PERSONS WHO MAY HAVE SUFFERED FROM INADEQUATE ACCESSIBILITY AT 2 GOLD STREET On April 24, 2013, the United States District Court for the Southern District of New York entered a consent order resolving a lawsuit brought by the United States Department of Justice against certain owners, builders, and/or developers alleging that they failed to include certain accessible features for persons with disabilities required by the Fair Housing Act, 42 U.S.C. § 3604(f)(3)(c), in the design and construction of 2 Gold Street (the “Property”). 2 Gold Street denied the allegations and agreed to the consent order to settle the matter without litigation. Under this consent order, a person may be entitled to receive monetary relief if he or she: WAS DISCOURAGED FROM LIVING AT THIS PROPERTY BECAUSE OF THE LACK OF ACCESSIBLE FEATURES; HAS BEEN HURT IN ANY WAY BY THE LACK OF ACCESSIBLE FEATURES AT THIS PROPERTY; PAID TO HAVE AN APARTMENT AT THIS PROPERTY MADE MORE ACCESSIBLE TO PERSONS WITH DISABILITIES; OR WAS OTHERWISE DISCRIMINATED AGAINST ON THE BASIS OF DISABILITY AS A RESULT OF THE DESIGN AND CONSTRUCTION OF THIS PROPERTY. If you wish to make a claim for discrimination on the basis of disability, or if you have any information about persons who may have such a claim, please contact the United States Attorney’s Office, Southern District of New York at 212-637-2800. You may also fax us at 212-637-2702 or write to: United States Attorney’s Office, Southern District of New York Attn: Civil Rights Unit 86 Chambers Street New York, New York 10007 NOTE: You must call or write no later than October 23, 2015. DE: 05/01, 05/29 & 06/19/2013
May 15 - May 27, 2013
Taste of Tribeca Continued from page 24
want one of my pastrami reuben eggrolls too.
Carl Kristian Frederiksen, Chef
What a sad question! I’d love to eat whatever my mother served that night.
Gage Jung, Chef Yorganic 3 Hanover Square 212-968-9700 yorganicnyc.com Dish served? We are serving our Signature Yorgasm Salad, Yorgasm Bowl and Spicy Bowl for Taste. This dishes best reflect our creativity with flavors, textures and aesthetic. It has purple kale and organic quinoa and a homemade “Kiss Me Kimchi” Vinaigrette! Made with Korean Kimchi Juice, you will never have a salad so delicious packed with protein and fiber!
Aamanns-Copenhagen 13 Laight St. 212-925-1313 www.aamanns-copenhagen.com Dish served? We’re serving samples of two of our smørrebrød specialities: a rillette of housesmoked salmon and pork pate made with hazelnuts, aquavit, parsley and pickled vegetables. We’ll also have samples of a dessert served the Danish way: strawberries with fresh cream. Beverage/dish pairing? I might start with our pickled herring or the fishcakes with remoulade, and I would no doubt pair it with our Danish beer from Evil Twin and houseinfused aquavit. Who taught you to cook? My mother was the first to cook with me. The best thing I learned from her was to take my time — if it takes five more minutes to make a dish just right, use it! The food will only get better! Favorite food growing up? I loved anything that came out of my grandparents’ kitchen. Their cooking was old school, but well made. Splurge utensil? How about three? A good knife, a good roasting pan for the oven and a cast iron pan. Common mistake? They don’t work and clean at the same time. If you clean as you go, you don’t end up with a sink full of dirty dishes. Cooking injury? No real serious injuries, thankfully! Last meal?
Beverage/dish pairing? If you ordered any of these dishes, I would pair them with any of our freshly pressed juices from our organic juice bar — nothing more refreshing than having a juice made for you right on the spot, just the way you want it! Who taught you to cook? The first person who taught me how to cook was my grandmother, the best thing I learned from her was to cook with LOVE. You feed a family of hungry men, you better put your heart into it! The attention to detail and the desire to please with every bite, the love of food isn’t just for the ones who eat it, but it starts from those who create it! Favorite food growing up? My favorite food growing up was of course Korean! It’s what I grew up on, and I’m happy that we are able to share it with our customers, in a more neutral format. Who would have known that a “blissbowl” would have become more popular that its father Bibimbap! Who else would be able to create a vinaigrette from Kimchi (pickled and spiced savoy cabbage), a Korean Staple? We love that we can share our culture’s food so openly and love that it’s accepted even more! Splurge utensil? Any chef should always have a good set of knives! They only hurt you when you don’t use them properly. Common mistake? I’m not sure what the most common mistake most chefs make but I can say that I’ve had to learn to be confident in my palate, I have to taste my food with my guests in mind, putting personal preferences aside and asking myself...is this dish something I would like if I tried it for the first time? Cooking injury?
Worst cooking injury? Ha! We’ve all learned to deal with burns and cuts, it’s just a part of finding your groove. Last meal? My last meal would be a homemade meal from my grandmother, whatever she wanted to make. To drink? I’m not a drinker, so probably Yorganic’s famous Green Juice — nothing will make you feel more like a champion!
Francisco Gonzales, Chef Maxwell’s Bar & Restaurant 59 Reade St. 917-261-6917 www.maxwellsnyc.com Dish served? It is with great pleasure that we are participating in the 2013 Taste of Tribeca and will be serving two of our most popular dishes! We are serving pulled pork sliders and our famous baked Macaroni and Cheese with our special ingredients. These two dishes on our menu are the house favorites and it keeps our customers of the neighborhoods coming back again and again for more. The pulled pork meat melts off the bone and, paired with our special sauce, makes for a mouthwatering house favorite. This was also voted a crowd favorite at last year’s 2012 Taste of Tribeca. Our Macaroni & Cheese is the absolute best comfort food no matter what season it is. Beverage/dish pairing? We recommend pairing the Macaroni and Cheese with a nice glass of white wine. Our Coppola, Chardonnay or Kato, Sauvignon Blanc are both excellent choices. The pulled pork slider is delicious accompanied by our Goose Island IPA on draft or a signature summer cocktail the Dark & Stormy (Goslings Rum, Ginger Beer & fresh mint). Who taught you to cook? The first person who taught me how
to cook is my grandmother. Since I was a child, I always loved cooking with her and helping her in the kitchen. She taught me her secret recipes, and ingredients to use in our family favorite dishes. Favorite food growing up? My favorite food growing up in a Spanish household, believe it or not, was classic American dishes, such as burgers and macaroni and cheese, mash potatoes. My family loved to grill and I loved steak, BBQ pulled pork and well-seasoned grilled chicken. Splurge utensil? The one utensil or cooking tool an amateur chef should splurge on should be a good, comfortable knife and good set of tongs. These are two necessities in the kitchen and both utensils you’ll be using all day to cut and grab food with. Common mistake? The most common mistake amateur chefs tend to make is rushing and leaving the rest of the workers alone/unsupervised in the kitchen. It’s a spiral effect when this happens and takes more time to regroup and get things back in order. I also feel another huge mistake inexperienced chefs make is over-salting their dishes. If you properly season the dish, there is no need for extra salt to be added. Cooking injury? My worst cooking injury when I first started cooking was getting too close to the burners. This takes a lot of practice and training, but when I first started I got burned very badly on my arm and fingers. Taking your time and paying close attention to what is being prepared in front of you is an art you pick up over time. Last meal? If I knew it was going to be my last meal, I would order a well seasoned lobster, my grandmother’s baked Macaroni and Cheese and open a nice, crisp bottle of white wine such as Chardonnay to go along with it.
May 15 - May 27, 2013
B Y TERESE LOEB KREUZER
Shakes for charity:
Battery Park City’s Shake Shack in Goldman Sachs alley is raising money for charity this month. An organization called Share Our Strength has teamed up with Shake Shack to raise money to feed hungry children. According to Share Our Strength, one in five children in the United States doesn’t have enough to eat. The “No Kid Hungry” campaign connects kids in need to effective nutrition programs such as school breakfasts and summer meals and teaches low-income families to cook healthy, affordable meals. Through May 31, anyone who donates $2 to this campaign at Shake Shack will receive a card good for a complimentary shake — valued at $5 — to be used on their next visit. One hundred percent of donations will go to No Kid Hungry.
Norwegian Breakaway n Manhattan:
Anyone with a view of the Hudson River from Midtown South to the Battery will get an eyeful on Sundays from here out when Norwegian Cruise Line’s newest ship, Norwegian Breakaway, arrives on the morning tide and departs on the evening tide, headed for Bermuda. The ship made its debut in New York City on May 7. Norwegian Breakaway, the length of three and a half football fields, can carry 4,000 passengers and has 1,600 in its crew. The largest ship to homeport in New York City, it’s a floating poster child for everything New York from the Peter Max paintings on its prow to its godmothers (the Rockettes) to the images projected on the two-story-tall LED screen in its lobby. No Lower Manhattanite need get homesick aboard this leviathan when there are giant pictures of the Brooklyn Bridge, the di Suvero sculpture on Broadway at Zuccotti Park, and of course, the Statue of Liberty. For those who see the ship pass by and wonder what it’s like aboard, here’s the scoop: There are 27 restaurants, a water park with five water slides, a ropes course (the largest at sea), and three Broadwaystyle shows.
Downtown Express photos by Terese Loeb Kreuzer
The Norwegian Breakaway
Norwegian Cruise Line’s C.E.O., Kevin Sheehan, said: “If you can’t provide all the bells and whistles you have in these big ships, people are going to be under-impressed.” However, one of the most impressive things for many passengers is the trip up and down the Hudson River. From an upper deck (the ship is 18 decks tall), it’s possible to see much of Manhattan, the harbor and parts of Brooklyn. One treat is to witness the sunrise over the sea and the moon and stars away from city lights. Norwegian Breakway is expected to put $35 million a year into New York City’s coffers. Welcome. To comment on Battery Park City Beat and to suggest article ideas, email TereseLoeb10@gmail.com
Announcing 2013-2014 Open Practices/ Tryouts GGFC is holding open practices/ tryouts for its U10–U18 premier and classic US Club soccer teams as well as its U6–U10 Developmental Academy. For more information, visit:
www.gothamgirls.org Downtown Express photos by Terese Loeb Kreuzer
Water play area aboard the cruise ship.
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May 15, 2013 DOWNTOWN EXPRESS