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Riverdale’s ONLY Locally Owned Newspaper!

Volume XIX • Number 3 • January 26 - February 1, 2012 •


230 St. shopping plans come into focus th

By BRENDAN McHUGH The city’s Economic Development Corporation is examining five bids for the West 230th Street development, ranging from a single supermarket to a 16-story mixed-use development with 200 units of housing. The development will rise near the corner of 230th Street and Broadway, sandwiched between the elevated No. 1 subway and the Major Deegan Expressway. A source close to the project laid out basic details of the plans and stressed that they were in no particular order. The first, which the source dubbed the “Foodtown murderer,” is a 72,000-square-foot supermarket with 300 parking spaces on the roof. Foodtown, which was recently renovated, is directly across the street. Another proposal is a two-story 32,000-square-foot building with a supermarket on the ground floor. The second floor would be office space, and 90 parking spots would be available at grade level. A third project has 133,000 square feet of retail space as a two-story building. It would be a mix of businesses, such as a specialty grocer, and national chains. There would also be 130 parking spaces below grade.

The last two projects both include housing. A16-story 200-unit building would have a 300-space parking garage and 32,000 square feet of retail, such as a restaurant and possibly a movie theater. The remaining project has 184,000 square feet of retail, potentially including a supermarket, a fitness center and other shops. There would be 66 units of housing and 217 parking spaces. There was no information about the height of the building. The source speculated that any office space would be easily filled up by a medical center either looking to expand or to add storage space. Because of the location, the traffic concerns and quality of life issues, Community Board 8 passed a resolution earlier this month recommending to EDC that housing not be included in the winning bid. EDC said they would review each proposal based on a number of criteria, including community input. A decision by EDC is expected sometime in early February. The site now holds a 75,000-square-foot parking lot. The city required that at least one commercial parking

space be provided for every 1,000 square feet of commercial development and that the number of residential spaces be equal to at least 50 percent of the total number residential units. Community Board 8 has asked the EDC to ensure that the public still has use of the parking facilities, even if they are not shopping in that building specifically. The city also asked that each building achieve at a Leadership in Energry and Environmental Design (LEED) rating of at least Silver by the federal government. This is the second attempt to develop this project over the past decade. Ceruzzi Holdings was about the close on a deal early in 2011 but was unable to, forfeiting a $1 million purchase price before even putting a shovel into the ground. Locally, the Kingsbridge Riverdale Van Cortlandt Development Corporation is involved with one of the two housing projects, though they claim to have confidentiality agreements not to discuss the development. In 2005, when the city first issued the request for proposals, KRVCDC submitted a proposal similar to the one for the 16-story building.

Hebrew Home explores options for expansion on Palisade Ave. By BRENDAN McHUGH The Hebrew Home is planning to add new buildings for more senior services on the adjacent 14-acre plot, recently sold to them by the Passionist Fathers of Riverdale. A meditation center, possibly an underground garage and a consolidated entrance are also preliminary ideas Hebrew Home president and CEO Daniel Reingold said he has for the future. The land was bought for $16 million about two months ago from the Passionists, who could no longer afford the land because of increased expenses, fewer retreat guests and fewer new recruits. “We are excited about this opportunity,” Reingold said Friday. “We think it will be something the community will be proud of. We hope to involve the community early on in discussions about what we’re going to try and do.” He added that the Hebrew Home will go through the Uniform Land Use Review Procedure (ULURP), which requires months of public review and community involvement. “The Hebrew Home is considered among the best, if not the best, nursing institution in the country,” Assemblyman Jeffrey

Dinowitz said. “Increasing their ability to provide services to seniors is a good thing.” Reingold said he was excited to work with the community, noting that the Hebrew Home was the first institution in the area to submit a “master plan” to the community board. “This is very premature, but our plan would be to demolish the existing structures and replace them with an environmentally sound green building,” he said, calling the larger building an “eyesore.” An existing private house on the property, while attractive, is not handicap-accessible and would not be usable by the seniors at the home. “It looks pretty from the outside, but it’s completely shot. It would cost a fortune [to renovate], and what do you do with it?” he asked. Going through ULURP, the Hebrew Home doesn’t expect to break ground for at least three years. “We’re very happy that Hebrew Home is making their plans public, and we look forward to being a partner with a decision that’s helpful to the community and the public,” said Robert Fanuzzi, chairman of Community Board 8.

“Before they get to the construction phase, they need to think about how it affects their neighbors,” he cautioned, citing

traffic woes. Reingold said the Hebrew Home has offered its employees incentives for carpooling and

taking mass transit, and in the past year the number of cars on the lot has been reduced by Continued on Page 3

City Council Speaker and possible mayoral candidate Christine Quinn joined Councilman G. Oliver Koppell and spoke with seniors at the Hebrew Home last Friday. It was Quinn’s second visit to Riverdale in two months.

Thursday, January 26, 2012 • The RIVERDALE REVIEW


Not much support for expanding alternate-side parking on HH Pkwy By BRENDAN McHUGH Cars parked for days, weeks and sometimes months in the same spot on the southbound Henry Hudson Parkway service road have become a headache for building workers trying to clean the area. At last week’s Community Board 8 environment and sanitation meeting at the Riverdale Temple, the committee pondered the idea of putting alternateside parking on the southbound road, but ultimately they decided the idea would need more community input. Despite sending a letter to the buildings along the parkway and holding the meeting one block west of the area in question, only two community members showed up to discuss the matter. Both were building workers in favor of the proposal. “It’s an issue, it’s definitely an issue,” said Angel Ortega, building superintendent for The Briar Oaks, 4525 and 4555 Henry Hudson Parkway. The alternate-side parking would be between West 239th and West 246th streets. Ortega suggested that it would need to be only on one day a week, just so his employees could have time to sweep the area clean.

Motorists given five-minute mercy

By MIAWLING LAM Motorists slapped with parking fines while paying for their spots could soon have their tickets cancelled. Under a raft of legislative changes approved by the City Council last week, parking enforcement and ticketing practices may become fairer, thanks to three separate bills. The first, presented by Council Speaker Christine Quinn during her 2011 State of the City address, would allow traffic agents to void an electronic ticket if a driver can show a Muni-Meter receipt that’s less than five minutes old. Currently, agents cannot cancel a ticket even if drivers can prove they were purchasing parking time from a Muni-Meter. Early signs suggest Mayor Michael Bloomberg will veto the change—he argues it exposes the system to abuse—but Council Speaker Christine Quinn said she has the two-thirds majority necessary to override his rejection. Quinn described the bill as common sense and said the grace period was designed to tackle the issuing of unfair tickets. “With this bill, we’re saying to New Yorkers, we’ve listened and we want to make your lives a little easier,” she said. Bronx Merchants Coalition Chairman Robert Bieder welcomed the move and said courtesy was finally being restored. “It was a major issue for Bronx merchants, and [the city is] recognizing this as a major blocking point for businesses,” he said. “I am thrilled with the change. The five-minute waiting period is a big plus. “Laws like this do make an impact. We applaud the City Council for taking these steps.” The two other changes involve ending the punitive practice of placing fluorescent yellow stickers on any vehicles violating alternate-side rules and a mandate ordering that 30 days lapse before late fees start accruing on parking violations. Under current practices, late fees start accruing 30 days after a ticket is issued, rather than 30 days after a finding of guilt or after an appeal is decided.

Ortega told the committee that when cars park right next to the curb outside his complex, the leaves, trash and debris that collect make it difficult for him to clean the streets. His team is responsible for 18 inches off the curb, and while he’s never been fined by the city for the mess, his job would be easier if cars weren’t left there for weeks at a time. Ortega singled out one car with Indiana license plates that hasn’t moved in three months. “So far, we’ve managed to keep it clean,” Ortega said. He noted that he put a garbage can on the sidewalk for people to use, but other debris is pushed in by the wind.

Rosemary Ginty, chair of the community board’s environment and sanitation committee, said she counted between 40 and 44 cars in the problematic stretch, and counts made by the Riverdale Review at various times over the past week showed similar numbers. But while the committee felt this was an issue that definitely needs to be taken care of somehow, Ginty said she needed more input from the drivers. “To put alternate-side parking there is a big step,” she said. “We shouldn’t do that at this moment.” “In every decision, there are unintended consequences to what you do,” Ginty added. Committee member Laura Spalter

seconded Ginty’s point, noting that if alternate-side parking is installed in that area, cars may begin spreading to other areas nearby, areas where parking is already at a premium. “It’s a plus that you don’t have to move your cars,” she said. An ongoing survey conducted by the mayor’s Office of Operations found that over the past six months, Board 8 is tied with Board 10 for having the cleanest streets in The Bronx, with a 98 percent acceptability rating. That rating would be good enough for second in Manhattan, only falling behind Manhattan Community Board 8, the Upper East Side. Bronx Board 8 would have the highest rating in Brooklyn.

By BRENDAN McHUGH More than a year after Mayor Michael Bloomberg first announced plans for a Van Cortlandt Park ice-skating rink in his 2011 State of the City address, full information about the rink will finally come to light. The Franchise and Concession Review Committee and the Department of Parks and Recreation will hold a public meeting February 6 to vote on awarding the skating rink concession to Van Cortlandt Park Ice Rink, LLC, a subsidiary of Ice Rink Events, a Houston-based company that also runs The Pond at Bryant Park. The FCRC meeting will be held at 22 Reade Street in Manhattan at 2:30 p.m. Before the February 6 FCRC meeting,

Hebrew Home Continued from Page 1

about 90. “I’m envious of my colleagues who get to come on the train, read the newspaper or take a nap,” he said, noting that he doesn’t have a mass transit option from his Westchester home. Reingold said he’d like to consolidate the entrances to the Home and work with the community to solve the traffic situation. Both Palisade Avenue and West 261st Street are very narrow, pothole-ridden roads. Earlier on Friday, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn and City Councilman G. Oliver Koppell met with Hebrew Home residents, whose main concern was paving the nearby roads. Quinn promised to look into it.

Community Board 8 will hold its own a public hearing to discuss the rink and possible vote on whether or not they approve of the rink, which has drawn scrutiny over the year for a variety of reasons—the main one being that the parks department and others involved in the project, including the Van Cortlandt Park Conservancy, seemed to withhold information. Last month, Community Board 8 passed a resolution saying they deplored the parks department’s decision to circumvent the public-review process by introducing a smaller, temporary rink that needed only a permit to operate. However, because of logistical details, the plan was abandoned not long after it was proposed. The community board meeting will be held Thursday, February 2, at 7:30 p.m. at Manhattan College. Community Board 8 chairman Robert Fanuzzi said he is excited to hear the community’s thoughts about the plan. “It always amazes me how passionate people are with things in Riverdale and Kingsbridge—throughout Community Board 8,” he said. He added that depending on how many people show up to comment, he may request groups of people to appoint spokespersons to avoid repetition and give every voice a chance to be heard. Currently, only limited financial data is available, but the full licensing agreement will be released January 30. The concession will run for 15 years. In the first two years, the concessionaire does not have to pay a fee to the city. At

year three, the concessionaire will pay the city the higher of $25,000 or five percent of the annual gross receipts. Each year, the minimum fee increases, until year 15, when it reaches $44,800. All the revenue goes into the city’s general fund, a parks department spokesman said. Shane Coppola, CEO of American Skating Entertainment Centers, said the rates seem appropriate, though he was slightly concerned that they don’t pay anything for the first two years. “But it depends much of the capital outlay they’re doing,” he said. That information will be available in the licensing agreement. In previous re-

ports, a large capital outlay was upgrading the electrical infrastructure of that area of the park, which is not adequate to run the chillers needed for an ice rink. Con Edison and the parks department need to work together to do the upgrade, but it is still unclear whether taxpayers or the concessionaire will cover the cost. Coppola looked at the site last year but decided not to submit a bid to run the rink because the neighborhood wasn’t enough of an attraction to draw visitors from outside the area. The site, near the corner of West 242nd Street and Broadway, is between the elevated No. 1 subway and the Van Cortlandt Stadium.

3 The RIVERDALE REVIEW • Thursday, January 26, 2012

Await details on plan for the ‘dinky rink’ that won’t die

Around the schools... P.S. 24

Preliminary applications for kindergarten placement in the 2012/2013 school year are being accepted through this Friday, January 27, for children born in 2007 whose last names begin with F through K. Applications will be accepted next week, January 30 through February 3, for last names beginning with L through Q and during the following week, February 6 through 10, for last names beginning with R through Z. For information on eligibility documents or other registration matters, call the school at 718-796-8845.

P.S. 81

Preregistration for kindergarten will continue through Friday, March 2, from 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. each day. For information regarding which documents to bring, contact the school at 718-796-8965.

St. Margaret of Cortona

All St. Margaret’s students are now outfitted with iPads to use for schoolwork. Teachers guide them in downloading learning applications like “Math Ninja” for in-class exercises, and the applications immediately report students’ progress to the teachers. According to Principal Hugh Keenan, the school uses a “hybrid system” that combines some textbooks and handwritten assignments with technology-based assignments that enable the older students to search on their iPads in lieu of, for example, using a printed atlas. The iPad program started last May, when students in a few grades were given the devices for “content delivery, interaction, engagement and differentiation of learning” and to “replace the very heavy and burdensome textbooks carried around by students.” Implementation has worked out so well that the school’s pastor approved the extension of the program into the remaining grades. Next Monday, Archdiocese of New York Superintendent of Schools Dr. Timothy McNiff will tour St. Margaret’s.

Horace Mann School

Asia Night last Friday was an evening devoted to multiculturalism and cultural identity. Performances included Taiko drumming by the Korean Drumming Club, dances to popular Korean songs, martial arts demonstration and a traditional Chinese Lion dance. The Korean Parents Association supplied the customary Asian food for this annual event, led by seniors Yvonne Cha and Janet Lu and faculty advisors Dr. Elisa Milkes and Mami Fujisaki. Award-winning film director Francis Ford Coppola spent more than two hours with Upper Division students last week in Gross Theatre discussing his work and responding to audience questions. History teacher Barry Bienstock facilitated the event.

Manhattan College

“The Lesson Plan: The Story of the Third Wave,” a documentary on how people succumb to totalitarian thinking, will be screened in Smith Auditorium next Monday, January 30, at 7:30 p.m. The film is based on the work of high school history teacher Ron Jones, who conducted an experiment in fascism with

his class of sophomores in 1967. The Palo Alto teacher launched what he planned as a one-week experiment after a student asked how the German people could have missed the signs of ongoing genocide in their midst. He reorganized his classroom into a simulation of a prototypical fascist youth group, enforcing physical discipline and uniformity in the students’ posture and speech. After the week, students were eager for more, and Jones’s “Third Wave” movement grew from 30 to 200. The film won the 2011 Kansas International Film Festival and the 2011 Chicago United Film Festival Jury Award for best documentary. It serves as a teaching tool to initiate conversation about uncomfortable topics of history, psychology, group behavior, gangs, bullying, intolerance and hate. The film screening will be followed by a discussion and reception. For more information, contact Dr. Pamela Chasek at 718-862-7248.

College of Mount Saint Vincent

The School of Professional and Continuing Studies offers its next Winning Wednesday event next week on February 1 from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Douglas Young, director of the Center for Economic and Financial Education for the Council for Economic Education, will present “A Personal Financial Survival Kit: A Better Way to a Better Lifestyle.” Winning Wednesday workshops are free and open to the public, offering professional advice on how to land a job. They also include information on the college’s School of Professional and Continuing Studies programs. To reserve a seat, contact Christine Leake at 718-405-3269 or christine.

Local Scholars

The University of Nebraska-Lincoln has announced that Rose Marie Sevillano earned a Doctor of Philosophy degree in December 2011. She was among nearly 1,500 students who received degrees there this semester. The 142-year-old university, with an enrollment of nearly 25,000, emphasizes teaching, research, and service through its colleges of architecture, arts and sciences, business administration, education and human sciences, engineering, fine and performing arts, journalism and mass communications, and law. UNL established the world’s first undergraduate psychology laboratory and founded the discipline of ecology. Choate Rosemary Hall in Wallingford, Connecticut, has announced that Jae Young Kim, son of Mrs. In Cha Yoon, was named to the dean’s list for the fall 2011 term. Choate is an independent secondary school that enrolls 850 boarding and day students from 39 states and 46 countries on its 458-acre campus. With 240 courses to choose from, students are given contemporary global studies and community service requirements along with more traditional requirements. Honors courses are available in all disciplines. The school offers immersion programs in China, France, Spain and Italy.


JAN. 27 - 29

Fri. 7:30 PM Sat. 2:00 & 7:30 PM Sun. 2:00 PM


FEB. 3 & 4

Fri. 7:30 PM Sat. 2:00 & 7:30 PM

KIDS’ SEATS $15! SAVE $5 on Adult Tickets!

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$5 savings only valid on Saturday 7:30 PM performances. Use code: DIGGER12. Excludes VIP, Gold Circle and kids’ seats. No double discounts. Offer expires JAN. 26, 2012.

Buy �ckets at Retail Loca�ons, Walmart, Arena Box Offices or call 1-800-745-3000. 191139

Thursday, January 26, 2012 • The RIVERDALE REVIEW


Competitors shown are subject to change.

© 2011 Feld Motor Sports, Inc.

Objections raised to charter expansion

The RIVERDALE REVIEW • Thursday, January 26, 2012

By MIAWLING LAM Students at Tech International Charter School, a new middle school set to open in Kingsbridge this fall, will not have an on-site lunchroom, gym, library or auditorium, officials have revealed. The developments emerged during last Thursday’s public hearing into the school’s proposed enrollment expansion. Nearly 20 residents, parents and elected officials attended the meeting, held at P.S 279 in Fordham Heights, to discuss the school’s merits and voice their concerns about the absence of vital features. The meeting was arranged after school officials submitted an application seeking permission to accept up to 50 percent more sixth-graders than originally proposed in the school’s first year. In its initial charter application to the State University of New York—the authority that grants permits—school officials stated they would enroll just 88 sixth-graders. However, SUNY Charter Schools Institute spokeswoman Cynthia Proctor confirmed the TI board now wants to increase sixth-grade enrollment from 88 to 132 students initially and from 267 to 334 children in 2016-17. The Charter Schools Institute board of trustees has recommended approval of the charter revision, but the SUNY trustees education committee may not agree. A decision was scheduled for January 25. Last week’s hearing—tacked onto the end of the monthly Community Education Council meeting—attracted such a poor turnout that only two people signed up to deliver formal remarks. Nevertheless, TI co-founder and execu-


tive director Steve Bergen said the school wanted to boost its student intake because it made economic sense. Officials initially settled on 88 students because the school was originally set to open in a smaller facility at the intersection of Webster Avenue and 184th Street. However, TI will now open at 3120 Corlear Avenue, a space roughly four times larger. “The reason for 132 is a pragmatic reason of trying to make our school succeed, so in a year from now, you won’t be looking at a school that is failing,” Bergen said. “There is an economy of scale in running a school. You get approximately $13,527 from the state for each child, so if we have 100 students, that’s an operating budget of $1.3 million. If we have 130 students, it’s approximately $1.78 million.” However, Assemblyman Jeffrey Dinowitz and Councilman G. Oliver Koppell both said it would be prudent for the school to prove itself before being allowed to grow by 50 percent. In a one-page statement read out by a representative at the meeting, Dinowitz said he was concerned about the lack of a cafeteria, gym, library and auditorium. “TI is to be housed in a facility that I believe is less than adequate for school children,” he said. “It would be irresponsible to approve the expansion of the number of students in this less-than-desirable facility at this time. “It would only be appropriate to Continued on Page 10

Montefiore Einstein Center for Heart & Vascular Care

A Healthy Heart Starts with You

Throughout the month of February, the Montefiore Einstein Center for Heart and Vascular Care will offer free educational lectures, heart health counseling and screenings to check your blood pressure. Protect your heart from disease, and learn how to take better care of yourself. Upcoming Blood Pressure Screening 8:30 am – 2:00 pm Thursday, February 2 Montefiore Medical Center, Moses Campus (Rear of Food Pavilion) 111 East 210th Street Bronx, New York 10467

Upcoming Health Seminars: Thursday, February 2 Nutrients for Heart Health Moses Campus, 11:00 am – 1:00 pm Friday, February 3 Food and Salt Intake Weiler Campus - Auditorium, 1:00 pm 1825 Eastchester Road Bronx, New York 10461

For more information about heart month events, please call 1-800-MD-MONTE or visit

Thursday, January 26, 2012 • The RIVERDALE REVIEW


BRIO Award submission deadline is Jan. 27, 2012

The submission deadline for the Bronx Council on the Arts’ 2012 BRIO award is Friday January 27, 2012 at 11:59pm. Application and guidelines for the 2012 BRIO (Bronx Recognizes Its Own) awards is available online on the Bronx Council on the Arts (BCA) website at www. Please note that completed BRIO applications can only be submitted online no later than 11:59pm on Friday, January 27, 2012. This year marks 23 years of BRIO Fellowships demonstrating the Bronx Council on the Arts’ ongoing outreach and support to artists creating work in the literary, media, performing, and visual arts. Bronx artists may apply in one of the following categories: Acting, Choreography, Crafts, Dance, Digital Arts, Fiction, Film Animation, Illustration/Artist Book, Installation Art, Instrumental and Vocal Music Performance, Mixed Media, Music Composition, Narrative/Documentary/Experimental Film or Video, Non-Fiction, Painting, Performance Art, Performance Poetry, Photography, Playwriting, Poetry, Printmaking/Drawing, Screenwriting, Sculpture, Spoken Word, and Storytelling. A total of 25 awards of $3,000 each are available this year to Bronx artists. Eligible applicants must be 18 years or older, live in the Bronx, and not be enrolled as a fulltime graduate or undergraduate student. Individuals who work for BCA or who are recipients of any of the Council’s awards in 2011 including BRIO, Bronx Writers Center Fellowship Program, or Digital Matrix Commissioning Program are also ineligible. The selection of the awards are based solely on artistic excellence and decided by a panel of professional artists of various disciplines. All materials involved in the selection process are kept confidential and are reviewed anonymously. Winners are notified of panel decisions by e-mail approximately four months after the deadline date and are invited to an awards ceremony in June to receive the first payment of $2,500. The remaining balance of $500 is to be paid to the artist upon completion of a community service activity which is required of all awardees. A final application assistance workshop will take place on Friday, January 20, 2012, from 6:00 to 8:00pm, at the Longwood Art Gallery at Hostos Community College at 450 Grand Concourse at 149th Street. We urge you to attend, but space is limited. Please RSVP at Individual consultations will be available by appointment only on Wednesdays and Thursdays, from 2:00 to 4:00pm. Call 718-931-9500 x35 for information or email Application assistance for 2012’s BRIO Award is also available during BCA’s BRIO Café Saturdays, scheduled for January 14th and 21st, from 10:30am to 5:30pm at the Longwood Art Gallery @ Hostos at 450 Grand Concourse at 149th Street. At BRIO Café Saturdays all are welcome to socialize and collaborate, create dialogue and network with other artists. This is also a chance to hear directly from BRIO winners and gain their valuable insight. On January 14th, from 1:00 to 3:00pm,

Toni Roberts will discuss “Initiating a Conscious Relationship with Your Muse” showing you how to unlock your deeprooted creative energy. On January 21st, from 11:30am to 2:30pm, enjoy and/or participate in a ‘Spoken Word Open Mic’ featuring a Griots Collective. Each week includes a free tour of the gallery, as well as a craft sale where you can meet and talk with Bronx artisans. Admission is free and all are Welcome! Funding for BRIO is provided by the NYC Department of Cultural AffairsGreater New York Arts Development Fund. Lambent Foundation Fund of Tides Foundation, Bloomberg Philanthropies. Additional funding is provided by the NYS Council on the Arts, the Scherman Foundation and BCA’s membership program.

Neshama Carlebach to sing at CSAIR

The Conservative Synagogue Adath Israel of Riverdale (CSAIR) will welcome singer Neshama Carlebach on Friday evening, January 27. Neshama, a leading star in Jewish entertainment, will lead Kabbalat Shabbat (Friday night services) along with CSAIR Cantor Elizabeth Stevens and Rabbinic Intern Adam Baldachin. Services begin at 4:49 p.m. Later that evening, at 8 p.m., Neshasma will discuss the music, stories, and teachings of her father, the late Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach, and how they continue to help many Jews to access Judaism. All are welcome to services and to the program. For more information, call 718-5438400 or visit the synagogue’s website, www. CSAIR is located at 475 West 250th Street at the Henry Hudson Parkway.

RSS announces Real Life Solutions Classes!

New season begins January at the Riverdale Senior Services, located at 2600 Netherland Avenue, with: Zumba, simple to follow dance movements done to Latin and International music, Rhea Linda, certified instructor. Class schedule: • Zumba: 5 Mondays, January 30- February 27, 10:30-11:30 a.m. Registration Required. Call 718-8845900 and bring or mail check made out to Riverdale Senior Services. Validated parking available

Documentary to be shown at Manhattan College

Manhattan College will present a film screening of The Lesson Plan: The Story of the Third Wave on Monday, Jan. 30 at 7:30 p.m. in Smith Auditorium. Winner of the 2011 Kansas International Film Festival and the 2011 Chicago United Film Festival Jury Award for best documentary, the film is based on an experiment Ron Jones, a high school history teacher, conducted in 1967 on fascism with his class of sophomores. Jones, a teacher in Palo Alto, Calif., launched a one-week experiment after an innocent student asked the question, ‘how could the German people have missed the signs of the ongoing genocide being perpetrated by the Nazis?’ This question sparked Jones to test how decent Germans or anyone could become victims

to totalitarian thinking, and created a movement called the Third Wave. Jones reorganized his classroom that week into a simulation of a prototypical fascist youth group. He enforced physical discipline and uniformity in the students’ posture and speech per his first-day dictum, ‘Strength Through Discipline.’ He meant it to end there, but students were eager for more. Within one week, 30 students grew to 200 as the Third Wave took on a life of its own, and the students unwittingly re-enacted the roots of the Third Reich. Created and co-produced by Philip Carr Neel, a former student of Jones, The Lesson Plan: The Story of the Third Wave features interviews with Jones and students who also participated in the experiment. The documentary serves as a teaching tool to initiate conversation about uncomfortable topics of history, psychology, group behavior, gangs, bullying, intolerance and hate. The Lesson Plan: The Story of the Third Wave documentary also coincides with Manhattan College’s own mission of accepting people of all faiths, cultures and traditions, and instilling a commitment of social action against intolerance in the entire College community. Manhattan College’s school of arts along with the government, history, psychology, religious studies and sociology departments and the College’s Holocaust, Genocide and Interfaith Education Center are sponsoring the event. The film screening will be followed by a discussion with

Neel and the film’s director, David Jeffrey, and a reception. For more information on the film screening, please contact Pamela Chasek, Ph.D., associate professor of government and director of the international studies program at Manhattan College, by phone at (718) 862-7248, and visit http://www. to learn more about the documentary. Manhattan College is located at West 242nd Street near Broadway in the Riverdale section of the Bronx, one mile from the Westchester County line and accessible by MTA subway line No. 1. For directions to the campus, visit

Panel discussion on leadership at CSAIR

The Conservative Synagogue Adath Israel of Riverdale (CSAIR) will present a panel discussion on leadership in Jewish organizations following services and kiddush on Saturday, January 28. Moderated by Rabbi Jacob Blumenthal Congregation Shaare Torah in Gaithersburg, Maryland, the panel will feature two CSAIR members, Rachel Jacoby Rosenfield, chair of the synagogue’s greening initiative, and Stephanie Ives, Director of Education and Community Engagement for American Jewish World Service. They will be joined by Rabbi Steven Exler of the Hebrew Institute of Riverdale. This program, which is free and open to the entire community, is part of the Gladstein Weekend which will bring together members of the Gladstein Fellowship in Entrepreneurial Judaism. For more information, call 718-5438400 or visit the synagogue’s website, www. CSAIR is located at 475 West 250th Street at the Henry Hudson Parkway.


Flutist Marina Piccinini will headline Bronx Arts Ensemble’s Sunday, January 29, 3 pm chamber music concert at the home of Peter Joseph and Elizabeth Scheuer at 4730 Fieldston Road when Riverdalian Oliver Caplan will premiere his new work, ‘My Elephant Cloud’. The concert program includes Mozart ‘Flute Quartet in D Major, K. 285’, Chopin ‘Scherzo No. 2 in b-flat minor, Op. 31’ and Strauss ‘Violin Sonata in E Flat (Transcribed for Flute and Piano)’. Bronx High School of Science senior and pianist, Mizuho Yoshimune, will also make her second appearance with the Bronx Arts Ensemble and pianist Rolando Rolim will accompany Ms.Piccinini. Tickets are $25 and include an intermission reception. Please call 718 601-7399 or visit for tickets and more information. Maria Piccinini, the first flutist to win the coveted Avery Fisher Career Grant from Lincoln Center, is widely recognized as one of the world’s leading flute virtuosos. Ms. Piccinini combines flawless technical command, profound interpretive instincts, and a charismatic stage presence -- qualities which make each of her performances memorable. Since making her acclaimed debuts in New York’s Town Hall, London’s Southbank Centre, and Tokyo’s Suntory Hall, Ms. Piccinini has been in demand both as a recitalist and soloist with orchestras in the United States, Canada, Europe, and Japan. She has been soloist with the Boston Symphony

The RIVERDALE REVIEW • Thursday, January 26, 2012

BAE to feature flutist Marina Piccinini

Orchestra, London Philharmonic, Tokyo Symphony, St. Paul Chamber Orchestra, Montreal Symphony, Rotterdam Philharmonic, National Symphony Orchestra, Saint Louis Symphony, to name a few. With memorable melodies and colorful interplay, American composer Oliver Caplan’s music expresses a deeply felt romanticism. Mr. Caplan has been commissioned by the Bronx Arts Ensemble, Columbia University Wind Ensemble, Washington & Jefferson College Wind Ensemble, Juventas New Music Ensemble, and Lorelei Ensemble. His music has also been presented by the Cleveland Contemporary Players, Boston New Music Initiative, 11:11 Theatre Company, Nebraska Chamber Players and dance choreographers Mary Chris DeBelina and Susan Graham, among others. Chicago’s 5th House Ensemble awarded him the Grand Prize in its 2010 Young Composer Competition. Other accolades include a fellowship at the 2011 Virginia Center for the Creative Arts, recognition by the American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers with ASCAPLUS Awards for emerging artists (2008, 2009, 2010, 2011), and selection as a 2009 Finalist for the Morton Gould Young Composer Award. Oliver Caplan was raised in the Bronx, New York. He studied Music and Geography at Dartmouth College and Composition at the Boston Conservatory. His composition teachers include Dalit Warshaw, Dana Brayton and Charles Dodge. Mr. Caplan currently resides in Somerville, Massachusetts. An avid hiker, he finds inspiration through time outdoors.

Marble Hill Family Practice

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Thursday, January 26, 2012 • The RIVERDALE REVIEW


Thursday, January 26 Spuyten Duyvil

TODDLER STORY TIME 10:30 a.m. Spuyten Duyvil Branch Library 650 West 235th Street Toddlers from 18 months to 3 years old and their parents/caregivers can enjoy interactive stories, action songs, and fingerplays, and spend time with other toddlers in the neighborhood. For more information, call 718-796-1202.


OPEN COMPUTER LAB 11 a.m. Riverdale Branch Library 5540 Mosholu Avenue Do you want to learn how to open a new e-mail account? Do you need help opening or sending attachments? Do you want to practice your typing skills or need assistance in applying to a job online? Come to the Riverdale Library and get assistance on the computers. Practice your new skills at your own pace. Ask questions and learn from doing. For more information, call 718-549-1212.


BABY LAPSIT 11 a.m. Kingsbridge Branch Library 291 West 231st Street Stories, Songs, Fingerplays, Puppets for babies birth to 36 months for parents and caregivers. For more information, call 718-548-5656.


FINANCIAL AID 101 4 p.m. Riverdale Branch Library 5540 Mosholu Avenue Spend an hour and learn the ins and outs of financial aid. A Kaplan representative will guide you through the terminology, the deadlines, and the different types of awards. For all ages. For more information, call 718-549-1212.


CB8 MEETING 7 p.m. Riverdale YM-YWHA 5625 Arlington Avenue Joint meeting of the Traffic & Transportation and Parks & Recreation Committees of Community Board 8. For more information, call 718-884-3959.

Friday, January 27 Riverdale

FUN FRIDAY 3:30 p.m. Riverdale Branch Library 5540 Mosholu Avenue XBOX Kinect, Wii and Board games of all types and all skill levels. For more information, call 718-549-1212.


KINDLE LIBRARY BOOKS 9:30 a.m. Spuyten Duyvil Branch Library 650 West 235th Street Did you get a snazzy new Kindle over the holidays? Looking for more books to read? Come on in and we’ll show you how to download or reserve Library eBooks for your device. For more information, call 718-796-1202.

Spuyten Duyvil

BOOK CLUB FOR ADULT READERS 11 a.m. Spuyten Duyvil Branch Library 650 West 235th Street A get-together for booklovers. Each participant briefly describes & shares thoughts about a book recently read-fiction or non-fiction. Discussions & recommendations are the happy result of this sharing. For more information, call 718-796-1202.

Van Cortlandt

WII TIME 4 p.m. Van Cortlandt Branch Library 3874 Sedgwick Avenue Join us @ the Van Cortlandt Library for afternoons of fun and games. (Bowling, Baseball, Tennis). 12 yrs and older. For more information, call 718-543-5150.

Spuyten Duyvil

READING ALOUD 4 p.m. Spuyten Duyvil Branch Library 650 West 235th Street A librarian will share favorite picture books, providing children with the wonder of books and the joy of reading. For more information, call 718-796-1202.


DOCUMENTARY FILM 7:30 p.m. Manhattan College Smith Auditorium Manhattan College will present a film screening of The Lesson Plan: The Story of the Third Wave. For more information on the film screening, please contact Pamela Chasek, Ph.D., associate professor of government and director of the international studies program at Manhattan College, by phone at (718) 862-7248, and visit to learn more about the documentary.


CB8 MEETING 7:30 p.m. Manhattanville Health Care Center 311 West 231st Street Meeting of the Health, Hospitals & Social Services Committee of Community Board 8. For more information, call 718-884-3959.

Tuesday, January 31 Riverdale

TEEN ADVISORY GROUP 4 p.m. Kingsbridge Branch Library 291 West 231st Street Let your voice be heard in the Kingsbridge Library’s Teen Advisory Group! TAG meetings will be held on Friday afternoons from 4-5 pm. If you are a 7th -12th grade student, you are eligible to join. For more information, call 718-548-5656.

TODDLER STORY TIME 11:30 a.m. Riverdale Branch Library 5540 Mosholu Avenue Toddlers from 18 months to 3 years old and their parents/caregivers can enjoy interactive stories, action songs, and fingerplays, and spend time with other toddlers in the neighborhood. For more information, call 718-549-1212.



MUSIC DISCUSSION 8 p.m. Conservative Synagogue Adath Israel 475 West 250th Street Neshama Carlebach will lead Kabbalat Shabbat at 4:49 p.m. At 8 p.m., Neshama will discuss the music, stories and teachers of her father, the late Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach, and how they continue to help many Jews to access Judaism. For more information, call 718-543-8400.

TEEN CAFÉ 4:30 p.m. Riverdale Branch Library 5540 Mosholu Avenue Come hang out with your friends in a cool, casual environment. Bring snacks to enjoy while you listen to the radio & chat with your friends. Use laptops to do your homework, watch videos, play games, & more. For more information, call 718-549-1212.

Saturday, January 28


ITALIAN SONGS 2 p.m. Spuyten Duyvil Branch Library 650 West 235th Street If you want to be transported to a small Italian village on the Adriatic Sea, or to an outdoor cafe in Rome or perhaps to a Broadway show, then a Saturday afternoon with tenor Salvatore Chiarelli and soprano Elga Johannes is the place to be. The program will be diversified with classic Italian/Neapolitian songs, opera, Broadway show tunes and even My Yiddishe Momme sung in English and more. For more information, call 718-796-1202.

Wednesday, February 1

Spuyten Duyvil

Monday, January 30 Spuyten Duyvil

CB8 MEETING 7:30 p.m. Community Board 8 5676 Riverdale Avenue Meeting of the Education Committee of Community Board No. 8. For more information, call 718-884-3959.


GAME ON 1:30 p.m. Kingsbridge Branch Library 291 West 231st Street Got the gaming moves? Show off your skills with the controller and challenge your friends and neighbors to a game of Wii Bowling in the library. For more information, call 718-548-5656.

Delays plague restaurant construction coming months, while Tin Marin Bar & Lounge, a Spanish tapas restaurant, will debut at 3708 Riverdale Avenue in early March. According to its owners, Tin Marin will offer traditional Spanish fare including patatas bravas, boquerones and chorizo. The dining room will seat 70 people and menu prices will range from $8 for appetizers to $21 for entrees. Henry Gonzalez, fiancé of Tin Marin’s owner Kenia Castillo, said he has high hopes the string of restaurant openings will lift Riverdale’s culinary stocks. “We need to make Riverdale a dining destination with nice restaurants,” Gonzalez said. “We just need to.”

Celebrity chef Ricardo Cardona and restaurateur Erick Caceres aim to open Oregano in mid-February. After a two-month delay, construction will resume next week.

The RIVERDALE REVIEW • Thursday, January 26, 2012

By MIAWLING LAM It has been sitting idle for months, but the sound of drills, hammers and chainsaws will finally resume at Oregano Bar & Bistro next week. Construction work at the eagerly awaited French-Latin bistro, spearheaded by celebrity chef Ricardo Cardona, was forced into a two-month hiatus after its owners became mired in red tape. Restaurateur Erick A. Caceres said progress was halted while crews waited for the Department of Buildings to register the restaurant’s air conditioning and heating unit. “It was all related to the gas connection,” he said, adding that the kitchen could not be installed before city bureaucrats inspected the device and signed off on it. Fortunately, that has now occurred, he said. “We should secure the permit next week, so we’ll be able to resume work on the premises.” Oregano was originally scheduled to open last September, but a series of delays has repeatedly pushed back its launch date. Its owners are now working toward a mid-February opening. In an interview last month, Caceres conceded that navigating through red tape was all part and parcel of the restaurant industry. “I’ve been in other projects where it’s taken a year, and it’s mostly due to the system,” he said. “The city, the regulations and the inspections really back you up because you never have a way of telling their schedule.” However, the restaurant’s struggle to obtain the necessary permits has raised questions about the challenges in opening an eatery in the city, particularly in the outer boroughs. According to the New York Times, new restaurants have to deal with as many as 11 city agencies; secure 30 different permits, registrations, licenses and certificates; and pass 23 inspections before serving their first customer. During an unrelated visit to the Hebrew Home in Riverdale last week, City Council Speaker Christine Quinn said she, too, was well aware of the headaches involved with opening a new restaurant. “I’ve heard a lot of complaints from restaurants about how long it takes,” she said. Quinn credited the city’s New Business Acceleration Team for helping speed up the permit process—mainly in Manhattan—and said it will get easier once the program is expanded to all five boroughs later this year. However, she admitted the city needed to do more to streamline the process. “NBAT has reduced the start-up time by about two and a half months for our first 500 restaurants,” she said. “We’re going to take it citywide and try to take it down more. If we can reduce it by ten weeks, it begs the question, how long is it to begin with? NBAT is a step in the right direction, but we obviously need to do more.” Meanwhile, two of Riverdale’s other long-anticipated restaurants—Yo-Burger and Tin Marin Bar & Lounge—also appear on track to open later this year. It is understood that Yo Burger, the latest venture from the team behind Salvatore’s of Soho, will open in the


Thursday, January 26, 2012 • The RIVERDALE REVIEW


Fieldston post office is saved but 13 Bronx facilities still at risk By BRENDAN McHUGH The Bronx went postal on the United States Postal Service when 17 post offices were being studied for closure last year. Through rallies, community meetings and thousands of letters, five of the 17 have been saved so far. Fieldston, Einstein in Co-op City, Castle Hill, Hunts Point and West Farms stations have all been removed from the list, the USPS announced last week. “I am so glad USPS has come to realize what the community and I have known all along: these post offices are much more than a place to drop off mail. They provide the essential services that residents rely on every day,” said Rep. Joseph Crowley, who has four of the offices in his district. Rep. Eliot Engel, who has the Fieldston office in his district, was thrilled at the news as well. “It is also encouraging that the Postal Service is listening to the rising chorus of reason. The Postal Service is facing difficult times, but cutting off service to its customers is not the way out. The Post Office cannot fix its financial problems by making access to post offices more difficult and inconvenient. This is a business plan designed for failure,” Rep. Engel said, noting that the Mount Vernon office in his district has also been saved. “But since the Post Office announced that no offices will be closed or consolidated until May 15, 2012, we have until then to make them see the light and keep our post offices open,” he said. The Bronx still has twelve offices that are being studied for closure. The Einstein office in Co-Op City serves the largest senior citizen community in the

country. A rally was held in the fall of 2011 with Crowley and New York Metro, the postal service union, to protest the closures. A rally was also held for Fieldston, led by community activist Robert Gratz. NY Metro legislative director Chuck Zlatkin was proud that the Bronx community really let their voices be heard. “There was tremendous response from the community,” he said. “Closing those post offices would have been unjustified. When everyone works together to fight to keep post offices open, it makes it a lot more difficult to close them.” But he was quick to note there is still

work to be done. “We have 13 others hanging in The Bronx. It’s not like the struggle is over.” Crowley also vowed to continue working, both in The Bronx and in Washington, to keep the offices open. “I also want to reassure the community that I will continue to fight to keep the remaining post offices and facilities in our area open.” Citing financial concerns, USPS announced the possible closure of more than 3,000 facilities nationwide last summer. The USPS had a net loss of $3.1 billion in the third quarter last year, according to a

USPS representative, and it relies only on sales of postage, products and services to fund its operations. Engel and Crowley are co-sponsors of H.R. 1351, legislation that will free the USPS from pre-paying its pension obligations in an effort to alleviate the financial burden. In 2006, Congress passed the Postal Accountability and Enhancement Act, a law that, among other things, requires the postal service to prefund its retirees’ health benefits, a requirement that no other independent government agency or private company needs to fulfill.

Parents, local pols raise objections to charter school expansion

Continued from Page 5 consider any possible expansion, by 50 percent or otherwise, only after the school has established a successful track record after a few years in operation.” Councilman G. Oliver Koppell also counseled against the expansion plan, believing it would weaken the existing neighborhood middle schools. “I have considerable concern about the location of a charter school in an area where there is, if you will, already substantial middle school opportunities,” he said. “We are trying to build and strengthen both the Riverdale Kingsbridge Academy and the In-Tech Academy, and I’m concerned about the idea of trying to go around and attract children away from those schools.” TI principal Adjowah K. Scott refuted claims the school would be poaching students and said state education officials should instead see their bid to serve ad-

ditional children as an opportunity. However, the small crowd focused on the school’s lack of infrastructure and accused its leaders of not providing children with a well-rounded educational experience. TI officials have previously said they hope to build a multi-purpose room in the school’s second year using funds from a SUNY capital grant. However, until then, the school would look to create partnerships with neighboring schools and local community organizations. After learning the school will not offer its students a cafeteria until at least September 2013—children will spend the first school year eating lunch in classrooms—District 10 Community Education Council Vice-President Valerie Greaves ripped into officials. “I honestly don’t know any parent that would send any kid to school [where they] could not sit down at an open space and

have people serving them lunch, because that’s their time,” she said. “Lunch is their time, so for you to tell me that there’s going to be no lunchroom, I can’t get past that.” Bronx Panel for Educational Policy representative Wilfredo Pagan said he, too, was disturbed by the lack of lunchroom facilities. “Parents have serious concerns, and the description that you have given, as far as the opportunities for both students and the community, I find difficult to comprehend,” he said. TI will continue accepting application through Friday, April 6. Admissions will be done through a lottery process, with the drawing held at 9 a.m. on April 13. Pupils who reside within District 10, which encompasses a large swath of the northwest Bronx including Riverdale, Fordham and University Heights, will be given priority.

11 The RIVERDALE REVIEW • Thursday, January 26, 2012

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Thursday, January 26, 2012 • The RIVERDALE REVIEW


It’s official: Boycott leader just another politician By BRENDAN McHUGH Cliff Stanton, a Van Cortlandt Village resident who has led the effort for a boycott of the Riverdale Review, has opened a campaign committee with the Board of Elections to run for City Councilman G. Oliver Koppell’s seat in 2013. Koppell must vacate the post because of term limits. Stanton runs United Snacks, which has a relationship with the Nuts4Nuts street vendors. Locally, he is involved with the parents associations of P.S. 24 and Bronx High School of Science and is treasurer of the Kingsbridge Riverdale Van Cortlandt Development Corporation. During a brief phone interview, Stanton said he is not inclined to speak with this newspaper. “This is not the best time to have the conversation. Frankly, I’m not going to have a whole lot to say,” he said. When asked whether he would continue to boycott the Review, he would not say. “Listen, we have nothing to say to each other. I have nothing against you personally, OK?” he replied. In response to a change in topic—what would he bring to the office of councilman?—he abruptly hung up. Stanton did speak with the New York Observer, blaming the Bronx Democratic Party for spreading political cynicism. “I’m certain that it is responsible. I’m not opposing individuals here, but I’m opposing this culture, and I’m holding them responsible for perpetuating this culture,” he said. The boycott, Stanton has claimed, is to silence the Review’s criticism on a variety of local issues. A major issue for Stanton pertains to Anthony Perez Cassino’s failed 2009 City Council race. This newspaper endorsed his opponent, Koppell, and Stanton sees the paper as a barrier to his own election victory. “Do the campaign and the boycott go hand in hand now?” wonders one local political insider. “It should be interesting to see if he champions it during his campaign.” Stanton conveniently filed with the Board of Elections only days after the January 17 filing day, which will allow him six months to raise money and campaign before making his campaign’s financial data public. The only other person currently registered to run for Koppell’s seat is Ari Hoffnung, a deputy for city comptroller John Liu. Hoffnung has been registered since he cut short his 2009 Council run and has more than $76,000 in his coffers.

Ironically, Stanton donated $180 to Hoffnung in 2008. In December, Hoffnung said he was focused on his current job and wasn’t considering a run. Koppell said on Friday he wasn’t sure how much involvement he would have in the race to fill his seat. “I haven’t made a decision on that at this point,” he said. “It’s two years away, and there’s a lot of water to go under the bridge.” Assemblyman Jeffrey Dinowitz, who helps run the Benjamin Franklin Reform Democratic Club, will be heavily involved in the race with his club—which mainly covers the northwest Bronx. “We’re going to try and elect the best

possible person,” he said. “Who that is, I don’t know.” Dinowitz’s name has been floated as a possible candidate for Council, and while he said he’s thought about it, he’s not close to a conclusion. The news of Stanton’s committee drummed up old political aspirations in at least one Riverdale resident. Community Board 8 member Robert Press ran for the Assembly in the mid1990s. He said that over the past few years several people have asked him to think about running for office and that he will now give the idea “serious thought.” “If Cliff Stanton is going to run for Oliver’s seat, I’m going to have to explore the possibility,” Press said.

Clifford Stanton

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Assemblyman Jeffrey Dinowitz announced the Assembly passed legislation he helped pass that will allow New York City to issue 18,000 hail accessible interborough licenses (HAIL) allowing livery cars to pick up street hails (A.8691-A). Twenty percent of the licenses will be for accessible vehicles to provide more transportation options to people with disabilities. An agreement on this legislation has been reached with the governor and the Senate. ‘For too long, persistent transportation problems within New York City have gone unanswered, leading to a nearly nonexistent taxi presence outside of Manhattan’s Central Business District and a troubling lack of vehicles for people with disabilities,’ Dinowitz said. ‘This new plan will afford New Yorkers in underserved areas greater access to taxicab service in and around the city. This will also lead to more revenue for the city of New York, helping protect vital programs for seniors and hardworking families.’ Under the legislation, New York City will be able to issue the new licenses over the next three years. The city will also be authorized to issue up to 450 new base permits, generating up to $1.3 million in revenue. In addition, the Taxi and Limousine Commission (LTC) will issue 2,000 new taxicab licenses for vehicles that are accessible to people with disabilities. The TLC will also be required to provide grants of up to $15,000 to retrofit HAIL vehicles to accommodate people with disabilities and establish a program to support the introduction of handicapped-accessible vehicles into the HAIL vehicle fleet.

BCA awards $143,100 to 55 grantees

The Bronx Council on the Arts (BCA) has awarded $143,100 to 63 local recipients of both New York State Council on the Arts’ Decentralization Program and the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs (DCA) Greater New York Arts Development Fund grants. A check presentation will take place at 4:00pm on February 1st at the Longwood Art Gallery @ Hostos preceding that evening’s First Wednesday Bronx Culture Trolley event. The ceremony will be attended by representatives of recipient organizations, artists, local legislators, the New York State Council on the Arts, the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs, and members of BCA’s Board of Directors. The Decentralization Funds or Community Arts Grant is open to Bronx arts organizations and community-based organizations that utilize the arts to help fulfill their missions. 34 Bronx organizations received this year’s award totaling $65,100. Bronx Arts Organizations (19) are: Bardekova Ensemble, Blind Beggar Press, Bronx Comic Heroes, Bronx Concert Singers, Inc., Bronx Stage & Film, Bronx Symphony Orchestra, BronxNet, Center Stage Community Playhouse Inc., City Island Historical Society, Drammeh Institute, Inc., Garces Puppeteria, Hunts Point American Indian Council, NuyoRican School Poetry Jazz Ensemble, Inc., Orchestra of The Bronx,

Pepatian, Riverdale Choral Society, Sinfonietta of Riverdale, Theater International, Inc., and The Uptown Coffeehouse. Bronx Community-Based Organizations (nonarts organizations) (15) are: Brainpower Research and Development Services, Inc., Bronx River Alliance, Inc., BronxWorks, Building 13 Association, Friends of Pelham Bay Park, Friends of The Woodlawn Cemetery, Herman Liebman Memorial Fund, Hope of Israel Senior Citizens Center, Inc, Kingsbridge Heights Community Center, Kingsbridge-Riverdale-Van Cortland Development Corp., Riverdale Community Center, Inc., SCAN-New York Volunteer Parent-Aides Association, Inc., St. Barnabas Hospital/ Fordham-Tremont Community Mental Health Center, St. Peters Church SMART Center, and Womens Housing and Economic Development Corporation (WHEDCO). The DCA Greater New York Arts Development Funds are open to Bronx-based artists and arts organizations with organizational budgets under $200,000 who do not receive direct funding from DCA and provide arts activities to borough residents. 16 artists and 5 arts organizations received this year’s award totaling $78,000. Individual Artists (16) are: Ave Maria Cross, Wilfred Torres & Dennis Redmoon Darkeem, Dalia Davi, Nicholas Dumit Estevez, Ray Felix, Michael Ferris Jr., Martine Fougeron, Andrew Geddis, Guy Gonzales, Nadia Hallgren, Ali Irizarry, Pedro Martinez, Laura Napier, Bobby Sanabria, Milteri Tucker, and Ivan Velez. Arts Organizations (5) are: Bardekova Ensemble, Bronx Concert Singers, Inc., Garces Puppeteria, NuyoRican School Poetry Jazz Ensemble, Inc., and Theater International, Inc. Each year BCA provides artists and organizations the opportunity to apply for funds serving a variety of purposes. These funds are charged with fostering the continuing development of local cultural resources responsive to community needs. Applications for the 2012-2013 grants will be available from the Bronx Council on the Arts beginning July. For more information on BCA and its entire grant programs, please visit the grants pages on BCA’s website at

Brian Skinner solo exhibit at the Riverdale Y

Riverdale Art Association member Brian Skinner will be having an exhibit of his work at the Riverdale Y during the month of February. An artist’s reception will be held on Sunday, February 12th, from 1:30 to 3:30 PM. Skinner worked extensively in publishing as a writer, editor and graphic artist. The publications in which his work has appeared range from the literary (Kirkus Reviews) to the scientific (Scientific American Newsletters). Though he began his career in the fine arts in the traditional media of oil-on-canvas and watercolor, he now works exclusively in digital media. His work is then rendered on watercolor papers or canvas at a fine arts printing studio. His artwork can be seen in several venues in and around New York City and in galleries in upstate New York, as well as online at The Riverdale Y is located at 5625 Arlington Avenue. More information on the exhibit is available at or by calling the Y at 718-548-8200.

The RIVERDALE REVIEW • Thursday, January 26, 2012

Dinowitz helps pass legislation to increase taxi service to outer boroughs

Thursday, January 26, 2012 • The RIVERDALE REVIEW



The RIVERDALE REVIEW • Thursday, January 26, 2012

Thursday, January 26, 2012 • The RIVERDALE REVIEW



The Conservative Synagogue Adath Israel of Riverdale (CSAIR) will celebrate its completion of the GreenFaith Certification Program for Houses of Worship on Saturday, January 28, during Shabbat morning services. Stacey Kennealy, Director of the Certification Program and Sustainability, will present CSAIR with a banner announcing their success. CSAIR is the first Conservative Synagogue nationally to participate in, and graduate from, the program. The rigorous two-year certification program requires congregations to achieve demanding benchmarks in the areas of stewardship, worship, and justice. Among these activities, CSAIR staff and members established a Green Team, completed an energy audit of the building, switched to green cleaning supplies, organized an environmental justice tour of Yonkers, and held outdoor services. GreenFaith’s mission is to inspire, educate and mobilize people of diverse religious backgrounds for environmental leadership. One highlight of CSAIR’s participation was a community-wide tree planting day in Hackett Park on the 10th anniversary of September 11. The park had been dev-

astated by a tornado the year before. All are welcome to services on January 28. CSAIR is located at 475 West 250th Street at the Henry Hudson Parkway. For more information, call 718-543-8400 or visit the synagogue’s website,

of the Canine Court dog playground. For more information call Friends of Canine Court, 718-796-4541.

‘Fitness with Fido’ set on May 6

On Tuesday, January 31, 2012 Schervier Home will sponsor a Day trip to SHOWBOAT CASINO at Atlantic City. Cost is $28.00 per seat, with casino cash back of $30.00. The bus picks up from Schervier Apartments at 2995 Independence Avenue, Riverdale @ 8:55am and Knolls Crescent @ 9:00am. Returns at 8:30pm with drop offs at 230thst. & Kingsbridge Ave.; 232ndst. & Henry Hudson Parkway; Knolls Crescent and Schervier Apartments. For reservations please call NELLIE KENNY @ 718-543-0237.

‘Fitness with Fido,’ a fundraiser dog walk to restore the parks and Canine Court for the better use of pets and people to enjoy the beauty of Van Cortlandt Park will be held on Sunday, May 6, 2012, 12 pm - 2 pm at the Canine Court Dog Run of Van Cortlandt Park (enter the park at Broadway and Lakeview Place). Meet at Canine Court. Bring your pet pooch and walk around the track with your dog Extra Bonus after Walk: Frisbee Catching Contest at Canine Court Dog Run; only registered dog owners and their pets are eligible to participate. Celebrate how pets and parks enrich peoples lives in New York City and promote responsible pet ownership. Presented by Friends of Canine Court and the New York City Department of Parks & Recreation. Must pre-register: $10 per dog. Registration form at: www.pawsacrossamerica. com. All proceeds will go toward upkeep

Schervier Center sponsors trip to Atlantic City

Chabad celebrates its 20th anniversary

Over 250 friends and supporters gathered this past Saturday evening, January 14, 2012, for a gala dinner, entertainment and tribute, celebrating the 20th Anniversary of Chabad of Riverdale, directed by Rabbi Levi Y. and Sorah Shemtov, at the New York Botanical Garden. Ilene and Neil Leibowitz, the Guests of Honors, were recognized for their support

and commitment to Chabad, and their selfless commitment to the welfare of the greater Jewish community. Vicky and Raphael Nadel were honored as Parents of the Year. Their daughter, Estie, attended the Chabad of Riverdale Early Learning Center, where their younger daughter, Yael, is currently enrolled. Mayer and Margaret Fried, Keepers of the Flame, were recognized for their unwavering commitment to Jewish involvement, and for their ability to overcome tragedy and devastation, inspiring all of those around them, as both were Holocaust survivors. The evening included a video that recapped the history and activities of Chabad of Riverdale for the past 20 years, and featured live musical entertainment by the Pay Daled band. The excitement and joy felt in the room during the event erupted in lively dancing. This was accompanied by the special warmth and love that is the trademark of Chabad, which made the evening a memorable one. Chabad of Riverdale expressed gratitude to everyone who took part in making its 20th anniversary celebration a successful and meaningful event. For more information or to schedule an interview, please contact Rabbi Shemtov at Chabad of Riverdale at 718-549-1100 ext. 10 or email

The RIVERDALE REVIEW • Thursday, January 26, 2012

CSAIR to receive environmental certification

Thursday, January 26, 2012 • The RIVERDALE REVIEW


It’s All About Politics

Learning that Clifford Stanton is running for City Council should bring a bit of clarity to events here. Now it should be obvious what is really behind the “boycott” of the Riverdale Review. Fear that by telling the truth, we will do to him what we already did to his political patron, Anthony Perez Cassino: end his political career. Perez Cassino, we are told, blames us for his surprise defeat in the 2009 City Council campaign Conventional wisdom then was that Councilman Oliver Koppell was finished, facing sure defeat. Fighting Cassino, a well-heeled opponent with powerful endorsements, including the most potent labor machine in the city, that of the Health and Hospital Workers Local 1199, Koppell was seen as at a decided disadvantage. He fought against term limits and took stands on a number of issues, reported on these pages, which made him vulnerable to the wrath of the voters. But many credit our editorial the week before the election with turning the tide for Koppell at the last minute. Not because we were effusive in our praise for the Councilman. On the contrary, we were scathing in our criticism of his tenure. But it was revealing the truth about Preez Cassino that ended his chance for winning the approval of the voters and unseating the veteran councilman. We wrote at the time: “In the final analysis, elections are choices, often poor choices. We aren’t sure that Riverdale can endure four more years of Oliver Koppell in the City Council. But we ARE sure that we can’t afford even one day of Anthony Perez Cassino. “Both candidates are wrong about so much on the issues that we have legitimate fears for our community’s future. But in the end it comes down to integrity. Oliver Koppell, flawed as he is, has it. Anthony Perez Cassino does not. In this election, for that reason, we support Koppell.” Our coverage of Perez Cassino’s career began in 2003 when he first emerged from obscurity and began polluting the body politic here. As our 2009 editorial stated, “We have been critical of Perez Cassino ever since the cynical attempt by former Borough President Adolfo Carrion to conspire to install his then-unknown buddy as chair of Community Board 8, packing the board with loyalists and directing their votes. As Adolfo’s campaign treasurer, a post reserved for the most intimate allies (or co-conspirators), this was a clear conflict that set up at least the perception, and perhaps the reality, that Perez Cassino was Adolfo Carrion’s ‘bagman.’” “This was driven home when one of the Carrion/Perez Cassino supporters on the community board was quoted in the local press as saying (or perhaps threatening), ‘don’t piss on my head and tell me its raining,’ with regard to the construction of the then-planned SAR High School in north Riverdale. Is it any wonder that huge campaign contributions from supporters of SAR showed up in Carrion’s campaign reports, and the coded threats stopped?” In the light of Perez Cassino’s defeat, the losers came up with a new strategy. If only they could silence the one independent newspaper available to tell the truth, perhaps then they could plunder the community with impunity. Thus was born the “boycott.” This 14-month failed effort to silence us demonstrates just how desperate Perez Cassino and Stanton, a close ally who is one of Perez Cassino’s financial backers, are. They saw this as a “preemptive strike” against something that they couldn’t tolerate – an independent newspaper telling the truth, getting in their way to assume public office. When we publish an editorial you know where it comes from. But who is bankrolling the efforts to silence us? For over eighteen years we have been about telling it like it is, revealing the truth. Whether it is the painful news that a politician is corrupt, or a principal is trying to impose his religious beliefs on his staff, we let the chips fall where they may. Teachers and parents know that the Riverdale Review is the one safe haven where they will get a sympathetic ear, and the confidentiality of their substantiated information will not be betrayed. Continued on Page 19

Alumnus fights ‘Goodbye Columbus’ To The Editor: Much has changed in The Bronx and in the rest of New York City since I left in 1976 the day after “Thanksgiving Day” for Denver, Colorado. Many people who knew me, Emzy Veazy III, and/or my mother, Mrs. Winifred Veazy, are still in The Bronx and the other boroughs. Although my mother died September 1992, she gave many in The Bronx a better chance at rising out of poverty and getting a good education. I am not a superman nor a multibillionaire like the troublesome New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, but I will try my best from afar to turnaround what I can do with little tremors that may become earthquakes. If my efforts fall far short, I can guarantee they will still resonate and create new positive influences in The Bronx. There are so many things in

The Bronx to choose from to solve. For now the readers present day Bronx newspapers and Bronx Internet blogs can spread my “letter to the editor” around to their widespread readerships who will definitely know and/or recall Emzy Veazy III and/or Mrs. Winifred Veazy. My present effort is to better help my old high school, Christopher Columbus High School, from being cast into the dust bin of history. Therefore, I call on Christopher Columbus High School graduates whether they lived in or came from Pelham Parkway, Throgs Neck, Castle Hill, Harlem (many Harlemites graduated from Columbus H.S.), and other places in The Bronx to join me in making certain our old high school continues to exist past June 2014. While in Aspen, Colorado I recently discovered about Christopher Columbus High School’s future demise as part of Mayor

ANDREW WOLF, Editor and Publisher

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Bloomberg’s and the School Board Chancellor’s misguided educational policies. I have a doable plan. I repeat that I have a doable plan. If any Christopher Columbus High School graduate is interesting in keeping our high school alma mater up and running far into the 21st Century, write and send your letter of interest to the newspaper or blog you read this letter in. Send out the word to take care of business now! Your efforts will be greatly appreciated. Emzy Veazy III

230th St. development To the Editor: Please note the following clarification regarding Community Board 8’s position on the Broadway Plaza development on 230th Street. At our January meeting, I announced that a priority of the Board was to make sure that the public retained access to the parking lot built for the new development. We will continue to work with the New York Economic Development Corporation to make sure that the existing parking lot remains open as long as possible. Thank you, Robert Fanuzzi Chairperson, Bronx Community Board 8

By DIANE RAVITCH I’d like to share some thoughts about a momentous occasion: the 10th anniversary of No Child Left Behind, which occurred on January 8. After 10 years of NCLB, we should have seen dramatic progress on the National Assessment of Educational Progress, but we have not. By now, we should be able to point to sharp reductions of the achievement gaps between children of different racial and ethnic groups and children from different income groups, but we cannot. As I said in a recent speech, many children continue to be left behind, and we know who those children are: They are the same children who were left behind 10 years ago. In my travels over the past two years, I have seen the wreckage caused by NCLB. It has become the Death Star of American education. It is a law that inflicts damage on students, teachers, schools, and communities. When I spoke at Stanford University, a teacher stood up in the question period and said: “I teach the lettuce-pickers’ children in Salinas. They are closing our school because our scores are too low.” She couldn’t finish her question because she started crying. When I spoke at UCLA, a group of about 20 young teachers approached me afterwards and told me that their school, Fremont High School, was slated for closure. They asked me to tell Ray Cortines, who was then chancellor of the Los Angeles Unified School District, not to close their school because they were working together as a community to improve it. I took their message to Ray, who is a good friend, but the school was closed anyway. The dispersed teachers of Fremont are still communicating with one another, still mourning the loss of their school. In city after city, across the nation, I have heard similar stories from teachers and parents. Why are they closing our school? What can we do about it? How can we stop them? I wish I had better answers. I know that as long as NCLB stays on the books, there is no stopping the destruction of local community institutions. And now with the active support of the Obama administration, the NCLB wrecking ball has become a means of promoting privatization and community fragmentation. I have often wondered whether there is any other national legislature that has passed a law that had the effect of stigmatizing the nation’s public education system. Last year, Secretary of Education Arne Duncan said that 82

percent of our nation’s schools would fail to make “adequate yearly progress.” A few weeks ago, the Center for Education Policy reported that the secretary’s estimate was overstated, and that it was “only” half the nation’s schools that would be considered failing as of this year. Secretary Duncan’s judgment may have been off the mark this year, but NCLB guarantees that the number of failing schools will grow every year. If the law remains intact, we can reasonably expect that nearly every public school in the United States will be labeled as a failing school by 2014. If you take a closer look at the CEP study, you can see how absurd the law is. In Massachusetts, the nation’s high-

est-performing state by far on NAEP, 81 percent of the schools failed to make AYP. But in lower-performing Louisiana, only 22 percent of the schools did not make AYP. Yet, when you compare the same two states on NAEP, 51 percent of 4th graders in Massachusetts are rated proficient, compared with 23 percent in Louisiana. In 8th grade, again, twice as many students in Massachusetts are proficient compared with Louisiana, yet Massachusetts has nearly four times as many allegedly “failing” schools! This is crazy. The best round-up to date of the catastrophe that we call NCLB was published by FairTest in its report, “The Lost Decade” shows in clear detail that progress

on NAEP was far more significant before the passage of NCLB. Congress, in its wisdom, will eventually reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. I hope that in doing so, they recognize the negative consequences of NCLB and abandon the strategies that have borne such bitter fruit for our nation’s education system. NCLB cannot be fixed. It has failed. It has imposed a sterile and mean-spirited regime on the schools. It represents the dead hand of conformity and regulation from afar. It is time to abandon the status quo of test-based accountability and seek fresh and innovative thinking to support and strengthen our nation’s schools.

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All about politics Continued on Page 18 After the months of propaganda and lies from Cliff Stanton, the fog is now lifted. This is all about politics, and always was, the desperate effort of failed politicians looking to stack the deck by hiding the truth. Stanton seeks public office by violating your right to choose, to read or not to read the Riverdale Review. We are confident a better candidate will come forward to dispatch him back into obscurity, a candidate unafraid to engage in honest and open debate.



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19 The RIVERDALE REVIEW • Thursday, January 26, 2012

No Child Left Behind: The death star of American education

Thursday, January 26, 2012 • The RIVERDALE REVIEW


Riverdale Review, January 26, 2012  

Weekly newspaper published in Riverdale, NY 10471