Thursday, May 12, 2011 • The RIVERDALE REVIEW
Democratic Club honors local restaurateur
By BRENDAN McHUGH For 35 years, Blue Bay has served the Riverdale community with more than just food, and after a recent scare that almost saw the restaurant shut down last winter, those at the Benjamin Franklin Reform Democratic Club thought it was necessary to honor the eatery with a community service award. “I must say, just walking around the room, everybody has a story about Blue Bay, everybody loves Blue Bay, and it’s an iconic restaurant here in Riverdale,” said club VP Ellen Feld as she introduced Chris and Alex Katechis and Steve Catechis. “A stable, viable commercial presence in the heart of a neighborhood is essential to the health of an entire community.” The three owners of the restaurant received the Timothy Sullivan Community Service Award for their dedication to the neighborhood. Recently, the Blue Bay trio has helped form a merchants association on Johnson Avenue. “Blue bay has been an important and integral part of our community,” Feld said. Chris Katechis wanted to thank his Riverdale neighbors for their faith and commitment to Blue Bay during its time of need. “Without the support of the community, we would not be here,” he said. “We owe the community our gratitude. We’re only here because of the community.” When word got out that landlord Friedland was set to shut down Blue Bay after the restaurant no longer could afford the rent, community leaders and elected ofﬁcials reached out to Friedland to convince them to negotiate a new lease.
At its 51st annual dinner, held at the Riverdale Temple, the club also honored Bill Samuels, chairman of the New Roosevelt Initiative, and Lilien Christmas, a community activist. The keynote speaker was Congressman Eliot Engel. Notable attendees included city Comptroller John Liu, Public Advocate Bill de Blasio, Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr., Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer, Assemblyman Jeffrey Dinowitz, state Senator Adriano Espaillat, state Senator Jeffrey Klein, city Councilman Fernando Cabrera, Democratic State Committee Members Bill Weitz, Helen Morik, and Joe McManus, and District Leaders Bruce Feld, Randi Martos, and Cynthia Cox. “I am thrilled at the outpouring of support we received at our annual dinner. The dedication of our members and our elected ofﬁcials is reﬂected in the strength of our club and our commitment to progressive politics and policies,” club President Heidi Schwartz said. Dinowitz, a longtime member, said the Ben Franklin Club is a key organization to ﬁght for schools, health care and other important issues. “If we don’t do it, who’s going to do it?” he said. Keynote speaker Engel applauded the club’s grassroots efforts, saying it is organizations like the Ben Franklin Club that are key to change and reform in America. He explained how the Republican Party is using the budget crisis to get rid of social programs and drastically change Medicare and Medicaid. “Shame on us if we let them do it,” he said. “I know, starting with the grass roots of the Ben Franklin group—we’re going to win tremendous victory.”
Come to the Y's Environmental Fair Sunday, May 15 from 10:00 to 2:00 pm at the Y’s back deck Bring these recyclables to the Fair -- you can recycle SO much, right here in Riverdale. Here's how ... • WearableCollection used textiles (clothing, towels, sheets, etc.) • Electronics (everything except small household appliances such as toasters, microwaves, vacuums, and TV’s • CFL (compact ﬂourescent lightbulbs, unbroken) • Rechargeable batteries • Recycle your used athletic shoes with Nike Reuse-A-Shoe and help us turn them into Nike Grind, a material used in sports surfaces like tracks, playgrounds and gym. Bring your old Crocs! Crocs recycles and donates your used Crocs to impoverished countries via their SolesUnited
Green Market Flowers
Stop 'n Swap
Bring clean, working and portable items you no longer need (including clothing), but this is not required. Please do not bring furniture or other large items that cannot be carried away easily. Take what you want, no charge!
Come ﬁll your garden with locally grown beauty! There will be a planting project in recycled containers for children of all ages.
Movies, Movies, Movies 10:30 am Eco Beeps! with Skip & Molly
Eco Beeps! will help your children make the right decisions on their path to green living. Follow puppet characters Skip and Molly to the world of green as they play in their room atop the village recycle center, or when they head off for green adventures in the Toybox Car. For young children ages 3 to 7.
11:00 am The Story of Stuff
Garbage activist Annie Leonard enlightens us in a 20-minute animated revolution. The Story of Stuff ﬁnally opens the door to a serious cultural dialog about the costs of consumption. For adults (and older children).
11:30 am Curious George Goes Green 108 min. Everyone’s favorite monkey has a new mission: Save the Earth! George knows that it’s easy when everybody lends a hand. For all ages.
Starbucks Coffee will be available as well as Shaklee Products
5625 Arlington Avenue, Bronx, NY 10471