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Riverdale’s ONLY Locally Owned Newspaper!

Volume XVIII • Number 30 • July 7 - 13, 2011 •


From small boxes of cookies to ‘big boxes’ of discounts? By BRENDAN McHUGH The stale taste of an empty Stella D’oro factory may be starting to disappear. A listing for “Riverdale Crossing” on the Ripco Real Estate website shows a pylon for the Broadway and West 238th Street building with “Wholesale Club” on it, along with four smaller spots each labeled “Tenant.” The “Wholesale Club” sign is red and white, the same colors as BJ’s, a company that has been rumored to be interested in the Riverdale-Kingsbridge area for years, including the West 230th Street shopping center that has once again been delayed. According to the brochure on the real estate company’s website, the wholesale club will take up about 96,500 square feet of the 115,000-square-foot building, most of it below grade. Representatives for Ripco did not return messages for comment. The highlights on the webpage include four available spaces ranging from 2,900 square feet to just over 20,000 square feet, and all the spaces are divisible. The total retail space available for lease is 34,785 square feet. There are also 485 spaces of surface and rooftop parking. Rumors have been circulating that the new owners may try to use some of the space as a storage facility and not as a retail space. With a U-Haul center on West 230th Street, just the thought of another nonretail space has angered local community leaders, but it is possible that both will be able to coexist in the building.

The former Stella D’Oro plant, empty for nearly two years, may soon be home to a popular “big box” store. “Self-storage doesn’t bring in jobs or increase commerce in the community,” Assemblyman Jeffrey Dinowitz said. “If that were it, I would be disappointed.” “A year ago, a company that did self-

storage was going to buy it,” he added. “But then another person said they’re bringing a BJ’s in. I would have personally preferred a mall with a number of stores, but I thought BJ’s would be perfectly fine.”

Ed. Dept. confirms investigation of P.S. 24 principal By MIAWLING LAM The principal at P.S. 24 is under investigation by the Department of Education following accusations that she misused donated funds and signed off on possibly fraudulent timesheets. A probe into Dr. Donna Connelly that

P.S. 24 principal Donna Connelly

began early last month is believed to be examining alleged hiring improprieties and claims she warehoused a key leadership position for nearly two years in violation of personnel procedures. The case came to light after the Riverdale Review received a tip-off from a person at the school on June 28, a couple of days before the end of the school year. The source said it appeared that Connelly was complicit in the school’s acting assistant principal Emanuele Verdi’s pocketing extra money. It is alleged that five teachers saw Verdi’s timesheets two weeks ago and noticed an anomaly suggesting he was collecting extra money for school bus pickups. What sparked the scrutiny is that under city guidelines, Verdi may have usurped the authority and income from carrying out this task, taking it from a teacher who obtained the position after it was posted as per regulations. Connelly would have had

to approve all documents, and if there is a legal problem, it is her responsibility. A Department of Education spokeswoman refused to answer a series of questions relating to the allegations but confirmed that an investigation was being conducted. “There is an active investigation based on allegations we received a couple weeks ago,” she said. Richard J. Condon, special commissioner of investigation for the New York City public schools, is apparently not involved in the probe, which is being conducted internally at the Department of Education. The Review understands the city is also looking into the possible illegal warehousing of the position of assistant principal. Connelly left the role unfilled for nearly two years, prompting critics to suggest that she was waiting for her close friend Verdi to complete the required coursework so he could fill the post. Continued on Page 11

Katherine Broihier, district manager for the Kingsbridge Business Improvement District, said she believes the cost of the building was over $20 million, but until any of the deals are made official, she has a hard time listening to rumors. “Lowe’s was looking in this area before the economy crashed. But right now, no one is doing grand openings,” she said, referring to yet another old rumor with the hardware and housewares company. Now that Ceruzzi Holdings was unable to close on the proposed shopping mall on 230th and Broadway, retailers may look to the Stella D’oro factory for their ticket into the area. “I would like to see a real shopping center that would benefit our community and The Bronx as a whole—the same type of stores as 230th,” Dinowitz said. “A Best Buy, Bed Bath and Beyond—things like that would thrive in our community.” A documentary film about the 2009 closing of Stella D’oro is now airing on HBO2. It focuses on the workers’ strike and on how many of the 138 people who baked the Italian cookies and breadsticks are still unemployed. Faced with escalating costs, the owners of Stella D’Oro abandoned the business which was bought by a North Carolina company.

Thursday, July 7, 2011 • The RIVERDALE REVIEW


Would-be bombers get 25-year sentence

By PAULETTE SCHNEIDER Manhattan U.S. District Court Judge Colleen McMahon acknowledged that the FBI may have set the stage for four men who intended to blow up the Riverdale Jewish Center and Riverdale Temple two years ago, but because the would-be terrorists were willing players who apparently relished their roles, she sentenced them last week to the minimum term of 25 years—they could have faced life in prison. “The essence of what occurred here is that a government understandably zealous to protect its citizens from terrorism came upon a man both bigoted and suggestible, one who was incapable of committing an act of terrorism on his own,” McMahon said, referring to ringleader James Cromitie. “It created acts of terrorism out of his fantasies of bravado and bigotry, and then made those fantasies come true.” In a May 2009 sting operation, NYPD officers arrested Cromitie, David Williams, Onta Williams (not related to each other) and Laguerre Payen in the act of attempting to bomb Riverdale Jewish Center and Riverdale Temple with weapons they thought were deadly shrapnel-enhanced bombs. All were sentenced last week but Payen, who is undergoing psychiatric evaluation. The fake devices were provided by undercover FBI informant Shahed Hussain, who posed as a Pakistani terrorist while he met with the men outside the mosque they attended and offered generous rewards for carrying out the plot. The next stop after Riverdale was to be Stewart Air National Guard Base in the men’s hometown of Newburgh, New York, where the plan was to fire missiles at military planes. At trial last October, the men were found guilty of charges including conspiracy to use weapons of mass destruction and conspiracy to use anti-aircraft missiles. Defense lawyers tried to persuade the jury that the group would not have engaged in the attack had they not been entrapped by the informant and lured by the payoff. But the jury was apparently more convinced by evidence that the defendants “marveled at” ball bearings they believed would make the bombs more lethal and by surveillance tapes showing hateful dialogue and clear intent. Cromitie, characterized by his lawyers as an “impoverished, unsophisticated man” with “a long criminal record and a big mouth,” had initially met alone with Hussain and then recruited the other defendants, fellow congregants at the mosque. All four converted to Islam while in prison for other offenses. At sentencing, defense lawyers asked the judge to request that the men be spared the extremely restrictive prisons ordinarily assigned to terrorist, but she refused, calling their deeds “beyond despicable.” “You were not religious or political martyrs,” she told the Newburgh men. “You were thugs for hire, pure and simple.” Congressman Eliot Engel said in a statement that he was shocked the men did not get life sentences. “Although I am pleased these criminals will remain behind bars, this is one case where the punishment does not fit the crime,” he

said. “I will continue in my efforts to increase funding for security measures for religious groups and other nonprofit organizations that could be potential targets for homegrown terrorism.” According to McMahon, the sentence is harsh enough. “Twenty-five years in the sort of conditions I anticipate you are facing is easily the equivalent of life in other conditions,” she advised. “I imagine that you will be far from here, and quite isolated. I doubt that you will receive any training or rehabilitative treatment of any sort. Your crimes were terrible. Your punishment will indeed be severe.” Defense attorneys said they would appeal.

By BRENDAN McHUGH Anyone who attended the Bronx’s fireworks show last week at Orchard Beach might have noticed a number of features that the Northwest Bronx does not have. First, and most obvious, is waterfront access. The Bronx Riviera is one of the most scenic destinations in the borough. Second, and just as obvious, is the parking and open space. Even on a gorgeous day with fireworks at night, the parking lot at Orchard Beach was never at full capacity. The parking lot holds thousands of cars. As mentioned a few months ago, this parking lot was once considered by the city for an ice-skating rink during the winter. They decided against it because of a lack of public transportation to the site during the winter and chose instead to place the rink in the shadow of the No.

1 train in Van Cortlandt Park. The current idea is to sandwich a regulation-size hockey rink—with no room for proper benches or penalty boxes—between the Van Cortlandt Park Stadium and Broadway. During the summer, the Bx12 and Bx5 buses run through the borough to Orchard Beach, but in the winter they do not. Two out of three known skating rink companies who expressed interest in the Van Cortlandt Park site chose not to bid on the project. Both said it was because the site was not enough of a destination, meaning there were not enough other things to do in the area, like shop or eat. Those involved with the rink—mainly the Van Cortlandt Park Conservancy— said they could envision a holiday market in the area to complement the rink. But they would have a tough time funding

Little League field seems finally on track By BRENDAN McHUGH As of Tuesday, construction has finally begun on Sid Augarten Field, four years after money was first secured for a major rehab of the land and facilities. “Finally, it started,” said a relieved Maureen Kelly, North Riverdale Baseball League’s administrator. The Little League field has had serious drainage problems for years at Vinmont Veteran Park on Mosholu Avenue. Fences, benches and other surrounding structures have been deteriorating as well. “We’re thrilled that it’s finally coming to be,” said Leonore Augarten Siegel, widow of Sid Augarten, who passed away in 1971. “And the children will have a place

to play—that’s what it’s all about.” Sid Augarten served as commissioner and president of the North Riverdale Baseball League for ten years while his children were in the league. Long Island contractor Kelco Landscaping was chosen by the parks department to field the construction earlier this year, and only now that the construction has begun are those involved with the league starting to believe it’s actually happening. “It’s beginning, and we’re all very excited about the start of the new field,” Augarten Siegel said. “It’s been long overdue.” She mentioned that in years past, they’ve Continued on Page 11

it because the conservancy is more than $60,000 in debt. In the budget analysis, they said they expect to collect $2,000 from their bird-a-thon, but according to a recent email from the conservancy to its members, it has collected only $700 thus far from the bird-a-thons. At Orchard Beach, not only is there enough room for a full-size hockey rink with the related facilities, but there is also enough space for creating markets and other amenities. The Bartow Pell Conservancy, a 97-year-old organization, may have the ability to support the necessary accessories to a skating rink. The Bartow Pell Conservancy could not be reached for comment and has not expressed interest in having a skating rink.

3 The RIVERDALE REVIEW • Thursday, July 7, 2011

Lots of better alternatives available for skating rink

As part of the Kingsbridge Armory task force, a proposal from New York Ranger legend Mark Messier’s management company would put a rink in the armory large enough for a minor league hockey team. This would be another location that meets the “destination” criteria skating rink developers would like to see—Fordham Road is a few blocks south of the armory, and a commercial corridor is directly outside the armory on East Gun Hill Road. The parks department is currently assessing any proposals it received for the Van Cortlandt rink. The city’s Franchise and Concessions Review Committee will vote on the project in August after the parks department chooses a winner. It will be the only formal approval of the project. Riverdale’s Community Board 8 also plans to vote on the project, but the vote will be only a recommendation for the FCRC.

Thursday, July 7, 2011 • The RIVERDALE REVIEW


Around the schools... Manhattan College

Sister Clare Fitzgerald, an international lecturer, will discuss education issues on July 18 through 24 from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. in the Leo Hall Academy Room as part of the college’s course in global leadership. The course is open to all educators, either for graduate credit or professional development. Sister Clare has been recognized with numerous awards for her educational contributions and has taught at all academic levels. She was chair of the American Studies department at Fairfield University for nine years and was founding director of the Catholic Leadership Program in the graduate school of arts and sciences at Boston College. A member of the Northeast Province of the School Sisters of Notre Dame, Sister Clare has served on the national level as president of the Leadership Conference of Women Religious and she is an appointee to the Vatican Commission on the Study of Religious Life. Those interested in attending the three-credit course may qualify for a partial tuition scholarship as a parochial educator. For more information or to register, please contact Sister Remigia Kushner at (718) 862-7473 or

Local Scholars

Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts, has announced that Hayley Sara Pann was among 3,200 seniors who earned a degree this spring at the college’s 109th commencement. Pann, a physical therapy major, graduated with high honors. Northeastern University is a global, experiential research university founded in 1898. Its rapidly growing research enterprise features three national imperatives: health, security, and sustainability. Northeastern is a leader in interdisciplinary research, urban engagement and the integration of classroom learning with real-world experience. In its distinctive cooperative education program, students alternate semesters of full-time study with semesters of paid work in fields relevant to their professional interests and major. Lancaster Bible College in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, has announced that Olive Ruth Gonzonie Joseph received an advanced continuing education certificate. She was among 163 graduates who received certificates or degrees at the college’s May commencement. Lancaster

Bible College offers a full range of collegiate programming, from non-credit biblical enrichment courses to undergraduate, master’s and doctoral degree programs. LBC provides a thriving social community and a caring, Bible-centered environment. Its graduates are geographically and culturally diverse, serving as ministry leaders worldwide. Grinnell College in Grinnell, Iowa, has announced that Daniel B. Kisslinger, the son of Jerome B. Kisslinger and Leslie F. Boden, was named to the dean’s list for the spring 2011 semester. To earn this distinction, students must achieve a GPA of at least 3.75. Grinnell College is a nationally recognized four-year liberal arts college founded in 1846. It enrolls 1,600 students from all 50 states and from as many other nations in more than 26 major fields, interdisciplinary concentrations and pre-professional programs. Union College in Schenectady, New York, has announced that Anthony Perez earned a Bachelor of Arts degree during the college’s 217th commencement in June. Perez majored in political science and sociology. Union College, founded in 1795, was the first college chartered by the New York State Board of Regents. It offers liberal arts and engineering programs to 2,100 undergraduates who show academic promise and strong personal motivation. Boston University in Boston, Massachusetts, has announced that the following students were among nearly 6,000 graduates who earned academic degrees this May: Karen A. Bernabe, B.S. in health science; Keith S. O’Donnell, B.A. in history; Ilyana Sori, B.S. in health science; Jasmina R. Sidberry, B.S. in health science; Shawn H. Axelbank, B.S. in hospitality administration; Alexandra I. Halprin, B.A. in history and political science; Michael A. Riordan, J.D. in law; John M. Holland, B.S. in communication; Cynthia Almonte, B.S. in health science; Antony Khalilov, B.S. in business administration and management; Nina R. Zegelbone, B.A. in biology with a specialization in ecology and conservation; and Laura I. Rivera, B.A. in history, cum laude. Boston University is the nation’s fourth- largest independent university, with an enrollment of more than 29,000 students in its 17 schools and colleges. It offers exceptional grounding in the liberal arts, a broad range of programs in the arts, sciences, engineering, and professional areas, and state-of-the-art facilities for teaching and research.

By MIAWLING LAM Unhappy with the slim pickings for local middle schools, a group of parents politically connected to defeated City Council candidate Anthony Perez Cassino have decided to open a new charter school in Riverdale. The group, led by outgoing P.S. 24 parents’ association co-president Cliff Stanton and current PA co-president Cori Worchel, announced the scheme at last Tuesday’s Community Board 8 education committee meeting. The pair said the proposal was designed to give local families more middle school options in an area that was devoid of real and affordable choices. But a charter school, under law, could not be restricted to just Riverdale children. An impartial lottery would be held among any student applying from school District 10, of which Riverdale children only compose less than 5%, potentially sending over 150 middle school students from outside the community to Stanton’s school in Riverdale, exacerbating a problem that has existed here since the 141 building opened in 1957. The school would cater to approximately 180 students in grades 6 through 8, and although no possible site has been identified, the group hopes to have the school open within two years. The Riverdale Review has learned that another group of educators and civic leaders have been organizing for weeks to apply for the charter lost by the Kingsbridge Innovative Design School. They envision a K-8 school that would offer parents a more traditional, highly structured program with advanced academic offerings. Their philosophy, borne out by some educational research, is that the seeds of middle school failure are sown in elementary school, and that District 10 schools have taken a “self esteem” approach rather than stress rigorous academics since the days when former Superintendent Irma Zardoya ran the schools here. Like the Stanton/Cassino School, by law students from anywhere in District 10 could apply. Stanton maintains middle schools were the “obvious weak link in the system” across New York City and, in particular, Riverdale. “We’ve got excellent elementary schools, we’ve got great high school options, and without rendering a verdict on [M.S/H.S] 141, our parents were very clear in their expression of a need for an additional option,” he said. “The idea was floated about a charter school,” he said. “It just seemed that that’s where the current was flowing. It seemed the path of least resistance.” The plan follows a “survey” of what Stanton claims were 300 P.S. 24 parents last fall. The research, which Stanton admitted was “highly unscientific,” showed that 65 percent were dissatisfied with the area’s existing middle school options. Stanton also claims that fewer than 20 percent of respondents had a clear idea of where they wanted to send their kids following graduation, and several even suggested they would move to another neighborhood. The group has yet to submit an application to the New York State Education Department, which has the ultimate authority to approve charter schools. While he declined to share the charter school’s mission statement, saying he

wanted to consult more people before publicizing it, he claims educators were already being consulted about the process. “We’re mindful of the pitfalls. There are many challenges to overcome,” Stanton said. “But honestly…we both have kids that are coming of middle school age soon, and we’re of the belief that more options are better than fewer. I think that if I’m involved with it, it’ll be fine.” Stanton also stressed that the group was not conducting a witch-hunt on RKA. “We do not present this as a competition,” he said. “No parent from 141 should be threatened by this. We do this to address a need that’s not being filled right now.” Education Committee Vice Chair Sylvia Alexander did not support or denounce the plan during the meeting but recommended the group concentrate on developing the curriculum. “The most important part of having a charter school is not to site it but to make sure the education that they’re going to receive is going to be firm,” she said. Assemblyman Jeffrey Dinowitz, who made an unannounced visit to the meeting, said although he wasn’t a fan of charter schools, he supported the idea of charters in principle, but not necessarily this plan. “The more options, the better,” he said. “I would prefer a K-8 option so as not to overload our community with older kids from outside of the area, and also insure the children would get a firm academic background from day one.” The troubled KIDS school had its charter revoked on May 17 due to gross financial and educational mismanagement. It is the first time the state has moved to close a charter school in its first year of operation. Meanwhile, Councilman G. Oliver Koppell weighed in on the debate and told the Riverdale Review that he was strongly opposed to a new charter middle school opening in the area. He also rebuffed suggestions that parents didn’t have enough middle school options. “I am not in favor of building a separate charter middle school,” he said. “I think we need to do some work on the Riverdale Kingsbridge Academy. There’s some problems there, and that’s where we should put our focus—not on creating a new charter school.”

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5 The RIVERDALE REVIEW • Thursday, July 7, 2011

Two charter schools proposed for here

Thursday, July 7, 2011 • The RIVERDALE REVIEW


Rotary Club to sponsor reading hour

Youngsters 3-12 years old are invited to participate in the Reading Program on Saturday, July 9, at the Kingsbridge Library, 280 West 231st Street, from 1 to 1:45 p.m. Readers will be grouped by skill level and encouraged to read, helped with pronunciation and word understanding, and for those without reading skills, interpret pictures. There is no charge for participation. The Rotary Club of Riverdale is part of Rotary International and sponsors the library reading project as a local community service. Adult volunteers who are interested in participating are asked to contact Karen Pesce, Secretary: (718) 749-4469.

Bronx SalsaFest Set To Sizzle This Summer!

In a tribute to the musical genre that gave the borough its popular nickname, ‘El Condado De La Salsa,’ Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. will host the first-ever ‘Bronx SalsaFest’ July 7 - 10, featuring outdoor and indoor concerts, special tours, a salsa trolley, and of course, dancing. ‘The Bronx helped propel salsa into an international phenomenon, and we’re welcoming visitors and native New Yorkers to experience it here this weekend in what will become a new annual celebration,’ said Bronx Borough President Ruben

Diaz Jr. ‘With the popularity of TV shows like ‘Dancing with the Stars,’ more people than ever are curious about this rich, rhythmic music. This weekend festival is a chance to put down the remote and put on your dancing shoes.’ SalsaFest, which is produced by the Bronx Tourism Council at BOEDC and funded in part by a grant from the NYC & Company Foundation, kicks off with a Warm-Up Party on Thursday, July 7, at 7 p.m. at Pregones Theater (571 Walton Avenue). The free evening starts with a screening of the award-winning documentary by City Lore, “From Mambo To Hip Hop, A South Bronx Tale’ followed by a discussion on the history of salsa music by film co-producer Elena Martinez and multi-Grammy nominated percussionist Bobby Sanabria, who was inducted to the Bronx Walk of Fame in 2006 and appears in the film. Afterwards, professional dancer and instructor Elvis Collado, winner of the 2010 New York/ New Jersey Salsa Open Championship, and his partner Melanie Castillo will lead a demonstration and group lesson to get salseros ready for Salsafest weekend. On Friday, July 8, hop aboard the Bronx Salsa Trolley, departing from the New York Visitors Information Center at 11 a.m. (810 Seventh Avenue at 53rd Street). Enjoy live music and singing on board as you head uptown for a bilingual tour of Yankee Stadium, which will focus on the contributions of the team’s Latino

players ($55). That evening from 6 p.m. - 8 p.m., there’s more dancing as Van Cortlandt Park’s Barefoot Dancing series goes Latin with salsa dancing and lessons on the grass. Free, meet by the Van Cortlandt House Museum, Broadway at West 246th Street, rain or shine. On Saturday, July 9, salsa lovers are invited to pay tribute to the ‘Queen of Salsa,’ Celia Cruz, as part of a narrated tour that features musical greats interred at Woodlawn Cemetery, including Miles Davis, Duke Ellington and Lionel Hampton. The tour highlight is the rare opportunity to view Ms. Cruz’s open mausoleum and take part in a musical tribute as conga and bongo players play at her gravesite. Tours are free and begin at 3 p.m. and 4 p.m., rain or shine. Reservations recommended, 718-920-1469. At 8 p.m. on the evening of Saturday, July 9, the Lehman Center for the Performing Arts presents two Latin music greats, produced by Lehman Center in collaboration with Los Canarios and West Side Beat Productions, Jose Alberto ‘El Canario,’ one of the most successful and respected artists on the salsa music scene, celebrating his 35th anniversary and featuring Andy Montañez, ‘El Godfather de la Salsa,’ former lead singer of the legendary El Gran Combo. Also performing will be Master Isidro Infante, Alfredo De La Fé, Luisito Quintero, and DanceOn-2 Dance Company for one exciting evening of music. Ticket information at On Sunday, July 10, there’s salsa on the sand as live music returns to Orchard Beach with Nelson Gonzalez and his AllStar Band performing at 1 p.m. and 3 p.m. courtesy of Latino Sports, Bronx Lebanon Hospital and the National Jazz Museum in Harlem. Between sets, Zumba instructor Hilda Rosario will demonstrate how Latin rhythms are great for workouts, too. Throughout SalsaFest, restaurants like Havana Café (3151 E. Tremont Avenue at LaSalle Avenue), PeaceLove Café (617 Melrose Avenue at 151 Street), Tosca (4038 E. Tremont Avenue at Miles Avenue) and the G-Bar (575 Grand Concourse at E. 150 Street) will offer live salsa music and great food. Angel Rodriguez, percussionist, educator, cultural historian and tour guide who will direct some of the musical events taking place during SalsaFest, specializes in the evolution of Latin music in New York City. ‘The term salsa is an umbrella for a variety

of Latin rhythms coming from the Caribbean,’ he explains. ‘The word originated with musicians in the South Bronx, mostly Puerto Ricans, who would tell somebody whose playing was especially hot, ‘Brother, you played with salsa tonight!’ In other words, you were cooking.’ ‘Tourists are anxious to have an authentic salsa experience when they visit New York City,’ said Bronx Tourism Council Executive Director Doris Quinones. ‘Starting this summer, Bronx SalsaFest will deliver just that.’ For information on more events taking place during Bronx SalsaFest, visit the Bronx Tourism Council website,

Bronx International Film Festival, July 8 & 9

The Bronx Stage & Film Company continues the 9th Bronx International Film Festival (BXFF) on July 8 and 9 at Lovinger Theatre/Lehman Stages (CUNY campus of Lehman College) with narrative and documentary films including three films with New York roots: “You Have the Right to an Attorney” about the Bronx Defenders, “Beatboxing - The Fifth Element of Hip Hop” and “Below New York.” Join the Bronx International Film Festival on or bronxfilm to win free passes to screenings. Visit for developing festival information. The reservation line is 718.907.0079. ‘You Have the Right to An Attorney is a documentary set in the offices of the Bronx Defenders, a non-profit organization in the South Bronx comprised of public defense attorneys, social workers and community organizers. The film gives a glimpse into the passion that motivates the defense lawyers and the seemingly never-ending caseloads they shoulder in their day-to-day work. It was in the late 70s that a youth culture evolved in the poorer parts of New York which combined several disciplines under the name of Hip Hop. Apart from the four classic elements of Graffiti writing, DJing, Breakdancing, and Rapping, the musical side of this culture was enhanced by a fifth element called “Beatboxing”. “Beatboxing: The Fifth Element of Hip Hop” aims at providing a full picture of this incredible art form starting with its genesis within Hip Hop Culture and continuing with its further developments and its use in various musical fields in several countries throughout the world. “Below New York” is a unique and stylized look at some of New York City’s finest subway performers, musicians and artists. Through a series of polished vignettes, the film draws the audience into the amazing lives these local performers lead, and how their quest for a venue and sustenance adds a truly wonderful aesthetic to one of the greatest cities in the world. More films to be screened on July 8 and 9 include “Una Calle Sin Salida” (USA), “Rumbleseat” (Canada), “Achante” (Canada), “A Wake” (Canada) and “Between Floor” (USA). General admission tickets are $5 per night. Lovinger Theatre/Lehman Stages is conveniently located on the CUNY campus of Lehman College at 250 Bedford Park Blvd West, Bronx, NY 10468 near the #4 and D lines and just minutes away from Westchester and the GW Bridge. The Bronx International Film Festival is made possible with public funds from the NYC Department of Cultural Affairs, the support of Lehman Stages and Bronx Council on the Arts.


which of these will not reduce your electricity use? a. replacing light switches with dimmers or motion sensors b. focusing light where it’s needed instead of lighting a whole room c. removing lamp shades

ceiling fans can improve energy efficiency…

d. keeping bulbs and fixtures clean

a. in the summer b. in the winter c. in both summer and winter

answer: c

an efficient way to keep your home cool in the summer is to... a. close shades or drapes to keep out the sun’s heat b. leave your a/c on all the time so it doesn’t have to cool a warm house


c. leave windows open for a breeze, even when it’s hot out

answer: a

find 100 + energy tips at

answer: c

what is the recommended setting for your a/c thermostat? a. 80° b. 78° c. 72° d. 60°

answer: b

The RIVERDALE REVIEW • Thursday, July 7, 2011


Thursday, July 7, 2011 • The RIVERDALE REVIEW


Thursday, July 7 Kingsbridge

BABY LAPSIT 10:30 a.m. Kingsbridge Branch Library 280 West 231st Street Baby Lapsit @Kingsbridge Library on Thursday, July 7, 2011 @10:30 ages birth to 18 months for parents and caregivers. For more information, call 718-548-5656.

Spuyten Duyvil

SUMMER READING 2 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 ages 5 to 10 years old. For more information, call 718796-1202.

Auditions to be held for SHAKESPEARE IN THE PARKing LOT! Looking for actors ages 16-60. Seeking all levels of experience; those who love Shakespeare and those who want to learn. For more information, contact Laurie Walton at 718548-8200 ext 208.

Monday, July 11 Spuyten Duyvil

KNITTING & CROCHET 11 a.m. Spuyten Duyvil Branch Library 650 West 235th Street A get together for knitters and crocheters at all skill levels to work on a current project, learn new techniques, or even to begin a new craft. A small supply of needles and yarn is available for beginners. All participants are encouraged to bring their own supplies. For more information, call 718-796-1202.


Van Cortlandt

ANIME NIGHT 4 p.m. Kingsbridge Branch Library 291 West 231st Street Want to see the hottest new anime? Come check out what’s on screen at the library. Bring your friends, your pocky, and your anime and manga fandom! For ages 12-18. For more information, call 718-548-5656.


Tuesday, July 12

NINTENDO Wii 3:30 p.m. Van Cortlandt Park 3874 Sedgwick Avenue Join us @ the Library for afternoon of fun and games. For ages 12 to 18. For more information, call 718-543-5150. GAME ON 4 p.m. Kingsbridge Branch Library 280 West 231st Street Got the gaming moves? Show off your skills with the controller and challenge your friends to a game in the library. Take part in our tournaments! For ages 12-18. For more information, call 718-548-5656.

Friday, July 8 Kingsbridge

GREEK MYTHOLOGY 2 p.m. Kingsbridge Branch Library 280 West 231st Street From their protected perch on Mount Olympus, the Gods of ancient Greece wrap their magic and subterfuge around the humans they choose to meddle with. Their manipulations influence the futures of the mortals who live far below them in a world bound by the realities of life and death. The important question of whether our choices can alter our fate is the eternal riddle of these fascinating and timeless myths. Presented by the Traveling Lantern Theatre Company. For ages 4 and older. For more information, call 718-548-5656.


TEEN SUMMER READING 4 p.m. Kingsbridge Branch Library 280 West 231st Street Meet new friends and check out new books at the Kingsbridge Library’s teen summer reading club. Discuss the books you’ve read lately, update your reading logs to get prizes, participate in weekly raffles for a chance to win COOL and FABULOUS stuff, and enjoy some refreshments in our brand-new library! The teen summer reading club is open to all students who are in (or who are about to enter) 7th - 12th grade. For more information, call 718-548-5656.

Saturday, July 9 Kingsbridge

READING HOUR 1 p.m. Kingsbridge Branch Library 280 West 231st Street Youngsters 3-12 years old are invited to participate in the Reading Program sponsored by the Rotary Club of Riverdale. Readers will be grouped by skill level and encouraged to read, helped with pronunciation and word understanding, and for those without reading skills, interpret pictures. For more information, contact Karen Pesce at 718-549-4469.

Van Cortlandt

FLAMENCO MUSIC & DANCE 2:30 p.m. Van Cortlandt Park 3874 Sedgwick Avenue Guitarists Lisa Spraragen and Josue Perez to perform Hacia el puente,a concert in honor of the Stephan A. Schwartman Building. Featuring music of Puerto Rico and other Latin countries - the guitar is the bridge to take! For more information, call 718-543-5150.

Sunday, July 10 Riverdale

AUDITIONS 2 p.m. Riverdale YM-YWHA 5625 Arlington Avenue

Van Cortlandt

PRESCHOOL STORY TIME 10:30 a.m. Van Cortlandt Branch Library 3874 Sedgwick Avenue Preschoolers from 3 to 5 years old and their parents/caregivers can enjoy new and classic picture books story time, action songs and more. For more information, call 718-543-5150.


STORYTELLING 2 p.m. Woodstock Branch Library 761 East 160th Street A librarian will share favorite picture books, providing children with the wonder of books and the joy of reading. For ages 6 to 11 years old. For more information, call 718665-6255.

Spuyten Duyvil

SUMMER READING 2 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 ages 4 to 8 years old. For more information, call 718-796-1202.

Van Cortlandt

SUMMER READING 3 p.m. Van Cortlandt Branch Library 3874 Sedgwick Avenue A librarian will share favorite picture books, providing children with the wonder of books and the joy of reading. For ages 3 to 5 years old. For more information, call 718543-5150.

Wednesday, July 13 Kingsbridge

TODDLER STORY TIME 10:30 a.m. Kingsbridge Branch Library 291 West 231st Street Toddler Storytime @Kingsbridge Library, Wednesdays July 6, 13, 27, @10:30. Books, Songs, Fingerplays, Puppets, rhythm games. For more information, call 718-548-5656.


MANGA DRAWING WORKSHOP 4 p.m. Kingsbridge Branch Library 291 West 231st Street Do you have the next manga series lurking in your head? Join Misako Rocks and learn how to draw your characters, plot your stories, and more. Chibi-riffic! All materials will be provided. For ages 12 to 18. For more information, call 718-548-5656.


SUMMER SERENADE 6 p.m. Riverdale YM-YWHA 5625 Arlington Avenue The Simon Senior Center will present Summer Serenade on the back deck of the Y. This dynamic and fun evening will begin with a chicken dinner with all of the trimmings followed by dancing to the music and dancing. For further information and registration please call Toby @ 718-5488200 x223.

By BRENDAN McHUGH Ceruzzi Holdings, the developer for a planned shopping plaza at West 230th Street and Broadway, failed to purchase the Kingsbridge property by its June 30 deadline. The company now loses a $1 million purchase price and rights to the site. An agreement to purchase the property for $6.7 million from the city’s Economic Development Corporation (EDC) was announced in February with the hope that the developer would be able to bring a shopping mall to the Kingsbridge area. Because Ceruzzi was unable to close on the deal, the city must now find a new developer for the site, which is currently a parking lot. “The deadline came and went,” said a disappointed Katherine Broihier, district manager of the Kingsbridge Business Improvement District. “Now the ball is back in the city’s court. Maybe this time they’ll use a little more judgment in finding a developer.” Last week, an EDC representative said the city was confident a deal would get done in the final days. The agency did not say what factors contributed to Ceruzzi’s inability to close. Ceruzzi was not the best choice for the project, according to some, but the city moved forward anyway. “I raised doubts about this developer all along,” Assemblyman Jeffrey Dinowitz said. “His proposal was never my first choice. I urged EDC to get rid of him and start all over.” Ceruzzi did not return calls for comment. “It’s very disappointing news,” City Councilman G. Oliver Koppell said. “On the other hand, Ceruzzi has deferred and changed their plans so frequently that

maybe it’s a good thing that we start again.” Years ago, the original plan for the shopping mall included a movie theater and a number of large stores. Over time, the plan was scaled down to a three-story design with a parking garage. The site is large enough for two 50,000-square-foot retailers. Ceruzzi had said they were hoping to attract stores such as restaurants, a health club or a supermarket. They were also rumored to be talking with stores such as Kohl’s and Best Buy. The mall can be up to a total of 167,000 square feet in size and must include a minimum of one parking spot for every 1,000 square feet of retail development. Koppell mentioned that when the city first issued a request for proposals, they received at least seven bidders. “Giving the opportunity to new people will give us a better project,” he said. “There may be a positive element to it.” Dinowitz agreed, saying, “This may be a blessing in disguise. Hopefully there will be a better proposal for that site.” Ceruzzi originally backed away from a deal in 2009 when he heard Related Companies was going to pay only $5 million for the Kingsbridge Armory while they were set to pay more than $10 million for the smaller space. Broihier hopes the EDC will act quickly to get the project going again, but in the meantime, she is focused on the positives in the community. “We have a beautiful parking lot. It’s filled every day. And other things are going on,” she said, referring to a handful of new stores opening along Broadway and West 231st Street.

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9 The RIVERDALE REVIEW • Thursday, July 7, 2011

230th Street Mall falls through – again

Thursday, July 7, 2011 • The RIVERDALE REVIEW


Continued from Page 1 The Council of Supervisors and Administrators raised objections to Connelly’s actions on this matter last year, insisting that a fully qualified assistant principal be appointed immediately. Other hiring irregularities and the alleged misuse of funds raised in the annual Laps for Learning physical education event has also rocked the school. Proceeds from the fundraiser, which is separate from parents’ association events, have traditionally been forwarded to teachers for the purchase of books and materials to enhance classroom instruction. But this year, the funds did not find their way to the teachers and were spent exclusively under Connelly’s direction, enraging many on the instructional staff. There has been near open warfare between Connelly and the teaching staff, which gave her among the lowest marks of all city principals in the Department of Education’s school environment survey last year. Outgoing P.S. 24 parents’ association co-president Cliff Stanton and current co-president Cori Worchel denied any knowledge of the investigation when they were questioned last week. A number of local politicians were mulling issuing a formal complaint to the Chancellor that Connelly illegally gave the politically-connected parents association access to the confidential name and address records of students and parents so that they could mail a letter attacking the Riverdale Review to that list some months ago. Connelly and the parents were rebuked for that action by the nearly

powerless local “superintendent” Sonia Menendez last winter. Now the politicians, alarmed over the controversies at the school, are considering reopening the matter, taking it right to the top. Calls to the school for comment were not returned before the start of the summer holidays.

Little League field Continued from Page 3 tried to fix individual problems, but there have always been too many things wrong— whether it was drainage issues, potholes in the field or dilapidated dugouts. “They tried in the past over a lot of years haphazardly to fix it all, and it just needed a revamping,” she said. Parents were horrified that the field was subject to so many delays when an ice skating rink no one had asked for was given preference and fast-tracked. Year after year, the parks department delayed fixing the entire field, either because of a lack of funds or because of an inability to hire a contractor. The low bidder on the project, whom the parks department was required to look at first, appealed the department’s decision to disqualify them because of a lack of experience—which delayed the construction until after the 2011 season. The project is scheduled for completion July 2012. Kelly said the parks department and construction company will try to accommodate the league during the spring 2012 season. This project will provide a complete reconstruction of the natural turf baseball field and the woodland area of the park.

11 The RIVERDALE REVIEW • Thursday, July 7, 2011

P.S. 24 investigation

Thursday, July 7, 2011 • The RIVERDALE REVIEW


City University trustee was featured speaker at Hebrew Institute By PAULETTE SCHNEIDER Jeffrey Wiesenfeld, the City University of New York trustee who persuaded fellow board members to engage in some discussion before awarding an honorary degree to playwright Tony Kushner, told a rapt audience last week at the Hebrew Institute of Riverdale why he moved to table the vote for Kushner and how the board’s decision was reversed in an unprecedented cave-in by CUNY executives. Giving someone an honorary degree, Wiesenfeld explained, serves to “enhance the reputation of the university, to identify the university with activities of a particular person to gain some additional stature for the university, to attach the college itself to the virtues of that person.” The president at each of the 23 CUNY campuses appoints a committee of three faculty members who recommend two or three candidates per year for honorary degrees, and the composite list is submitted to the university board of trustees for approval in May. Wiesenfeld, during his 12 years as a trustee, has thus far approved 450 honorary degrees—some to candidates whose views he did not agree with. “I could show you that at least 30 of those people are bona fide opponents of the state of Israel…And I voted for every one of them,” he said. But Kushner was different. “He had two specific characteristics that the other opponents of Israel did not have,” Wiesenfeld said. “One, he consistently said

throughout his history that it would have been better had Israel never been created. And two, he accused Israel consistently of ethnic cleansing. ‘Ethnic cleansing’ is… a blasphemous blood libel. It brings violence to the Jewish people not in verbiage—in action. We have history to prove it.” Wiesenfeld offered several quotes from an interview with Kushner in Haaretz, an Israeli print and online daily. “I have a problem with the very idea of a Jewish state,” Kushner said in one response. “It would have been better if it had never happened. Establishing a state means f---ing people over.” “He repeats these comments year after year after year,” Wiesenfeld said. (Kushner does concede in the 2004 Haaretz interview that Israel, now that it exists, should not be destroyed.) When Wiesenfeld made his case to the board and suggested an individual vote for Kushner, several colleagues concurred. Board chair Benno Schmidt, following legal counsel, agreed to “segregate Mr. Kushner for a separate vote.” This surprised Wiesenfeld. “I expected to be presenting a dissenting opinion on this fellow so it shouldn’t appear to the rest of the country that the City University of New York was unanimous in its approval of Kushner,” he said. But one board member suggested that it may not be a good “marketing strategy” in New York City to be honoring someone with such “gratuitous hatred for Israel.” Other board members made similar statements and



NO Eq St to B uip m ar t- uy! en Up t Co st s!



Jeffrey Wiesenfeld voted no, and “before you knew it, of the 12 trustees present, 11 out of the 12 voted to table Kushner.” After initiating the move, Wiesenfeld was interviewed by The New York Times and was grossly misquoted. He was reviled in other publications and received “disgusting” emails, letters and phone calls at his home, at his place of business and at the university. The CUNY faculty expressed outrage, and Kushner himself submitted a letter in response to the board’s decision. “If you read the letter, you wouldn’t believe it’s Kushner,” Wiesenfeld said. “It’s an exact refutation of everything he’s said historically….I don’t know too many people who say they support Israel

and lament its creation. I don’t know too many people who accuse Israel of ethnic cleansing and celebrate its creation. And yet Tony Kushner tries to live that diametric opposite.” In response to the uproar, CUNY’s executive committee overturned the board’s decision, and Kushner received an honorary degree from John Jay College this past June. “The pressure on Schmidt from the faculty would have made it impossible for him to operate,” Wiesenfeld acknowledged. “It would have caused the university to find it very difficult to do business. And so between a rock and a hard place, they did something which had never been done in the City University…the executive committee…reversed the entire will of the board.” Had the vote stood, Wiesenfeld said, it would have been a “Rubicon moment,” emboldening supporters who’ve had “enough of these people who hate this country, who hate Israel, who hate Western values, who hate everything except radical viewpoints” and who are tired of the “assimilation of the country to the rest of the world as opposed to trying to raise the rest of the world to our standards.” With the reversal, he said, any “normal” person with a dissenting opinion in an academic setting is likely to think, “Why should I go through that? I don’t want to be like that idiot, Wiesenfeld.” “Alums have to hold their alma maters financially responsible for this type of activity,” he said.








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SCREENING UNDER THE STARS 6 p.m. Kensico Dam Plaza Bronx River Parkway Featuring the movie “Shrek Forever After.” Gates open at 5 p.m. for picnicking, entertainment starts at 6 p.m. Bring blankets and chairs for seating. For more info, call 914-864-PARK.

Friday, July 8 Somers

LUNCH AT LASDON 12 p.m. Lasdon Park Route 35 Enjoy local live jazz and visit the garden shop. Weather permitting. For more information, call 914-864-7268.

Saturday, July 9 Scarsdale

FAMILY CAMP-OUT 8:30 a.m. Greenburgh Nature Center 99 Dromore Road Enjoy a night of nature on the grounds of the Nature Center as GNC hosts a family camp-out. You supply your tent and sleeping bag. Join in for an informal barbecue, then explore the moonlit trails with a GNC naturalist in search of owls and other night creatures. Camp-out limited to 10 families. Reservations required. Fir come first served. Each tent must include a minimum of one adult. Fee: $20 per person. For info, call 914-723-3470.


BUTTERFLY COUNT 10 a.m. Teatown Lake Reservation 1600 Spring Valley Road An annual rite of summer, the butterfly count is a way for all butterfly enthusiasts to partake in a citizen scientist monitoring effort. Help us count these fluttery jewels as they alight on flowers or take flight overhead. FREE. For more information, call 914-762-2912 ext. 110 or visit


PUPPET SHOW 10:30 p.m. Greenburgh Nature Center 99 Dromore Road Come giggle, dance and play in the shade with Jill Liflander and her delightful puppets. Come swim in a cool imaginary river with the plucky otter puppets. Feel the breezes from the ocean along with Fish-o, Fish-ie and Fishela. Sing about hugging trees, and all together, let’s all tell the trees how much we love ‘em. Recommended for ages 2-7. For info, call 914-723-3470.

Mt. Vernon

THE AMERICAN REVOLUTION 1 p.m. St. Paul’s Church 897 S. Columbus Avenue Terry Golway, director of the John Kean Center for American History at Kean University, explores the life and military service of General Greene, based on his 2006 book about the Quaker from Rhode Island who rose to high command in the Continental army. Additionally, there’s a performance of American Revolution songs, a demonstration about the use of the church as a wartime field hospital, historic children’s games, and tours of the historic cemetery. For more information, contact David Osborn at 914-667-4116.


SUMMER CONCERT SERIES 6 p.m. Lasdon Park Route 35 The park opens at 5 p.m. for picnicking. Bring lawn chairs and your picnic dinner. Light refreshments for sale. Weather permitting. Net proceeds are dedicated to the Conservatory fund. For more information, call 914-864-7268.

Sunday, July 10 Valhalla

ITALIAN HERITAGE CELEBRATION 11 a.m. Kensico Dam Plaza Bronx River Parkway Ethnic food, music, dance, entertainment and art and crafts. For more information, call 914-864-PARK.


IRISH HERITAGE CELEBRATION 12 p.m. Ridge Road Park Ridge Road Ethnic food, music, dance, entertainment and arts and crafts. For more information, call 914-864-PARK.


MALFA OPEN HOUSE 1 p.m. Croton Point Nature Center Croton Point Avenue Join members of MALFA and learn more about Croton Point’s amazing history and pre-history. We sit on one of the richest pre-history archaeological sites in New York State. Come by with questions and get answers from our local experts. For more information, call 914-862-5297.


LANDSCAPE PHOTOGRAPHY 2 p.m. Marshlands Conservancy Route 1 You don’t need to be a professional. All you need is your own camera and the enthusiasm for the beautiful landscape that Marshlands has to offer. Long pants and shoes highly recommended. For more information, call 914-835-4466.


LOW MAINTENANCE GARDENING 2 p.m. Lasdon Park Route 35 Join a Lasdon horticulturist in a walking tour of the gardens. Low maintenance perennials will be the feature of the tour. Discover perennials for your garden that will provide colorful interest with minimal care. For info, call 914-864-7282.


EMERSON STRING QUARTET 4:30 p.m. Caramoor Center for Music & Arts 149 Girdle Ridge Road The Emerson String Quartet adds to its tradition of powerful Caramoor performances with the final statements of three masters of the genre. For more information, call 914-232-1252 or visit

Wednesday, July 13 Mt. Vernon

THE REVOLUTIONARY WAR 1 p.m. St. Paul’s Church 897 S. Columbus Avenue Bayonets, Musket Balls & Ship’s Bread. Witness an indoor costumed demonstration about the life of a Revolutionary War soldier; beverages provided, activities for children before the program. For info, contact David Osborn at 914-667-4116.


DANCING AT DUSK 5 p.m. Caramoor Center for Music & Arts 149 Girdle Ridge Road Come to Caramoor for an evening of fun with the kids! Bring a picnic, spread out a blanket, and enjoy great music together. Children of all ages will have the opportunity to dance to live music, interact with the musicians, get to know their instruments, and ask questions. This is a wonderful way to have your child introduced, up close, to music in a relaxed and joyful way. Activities will be designed for toddlers as well as pre-teens. For info, call 914-232-1252 or visit


SIERRA CLUB PRESENTATION 7:30 p.m. Greenburgh Nature Center 99 Dromore Road BAG IT! — Powerful Documentary Looks at the Impacts of Plastics on Society with introduction by Sharon Rowe, CEO and Founder of ECOBAGS, a manufacturer of reusable, eco-friendly bags. For more information, call 914-723-3470.

Saturday, July 16

RYE VOLUNTEER CORPS DAY 10 a.m. Read Wildlife Sanctuary Playland Parkway Details: Join the Read Sanctuary Volunteer corps as we work to improve the sanctuary. Help by removing invasive plants, do trail maintenance, clear debris from the salt marsh and other tasks. Join the team that’s helping keep the sanctuary in good shape. Lunch is donated by the Friends of Read Wildlife Sanctuary. For more information, call 914-967-8720


STAR-SPANGLED CLASSICS 1 p.m. Caramoor Center for Music & Arts 149 Girdle Ridge Road Family Concert with Katie Kresek and Kaleidoscope. Star-Spangled Classics will lead audiences on a unique musical adventure highlighting American composers and music inspired by America. For info, call 914-232-1252 or visit

The RIVERDALE REVIEW • Thursday, July 7, 2011

Thursday, July 7

Thursday, July 7, 2011 • The RIVERDALE REVIEW



The RIVERDALE REVIEW • Thursday, July 7, 2011

Thursday, July 7, 2011 • The RIVERDALE REVIEW



The Simon Senior Center, located at the Riverdale YM-YWHA is pleased to present SUMMER SERENADE on Wednesday July 13th @ 6pm on the back deck of the Y. This dynamic and fun evening will begin with a chicken dinner with all of the trimmings followed by dancing to the music and dancing. The cost of admission is $8 for all seniors and $10 for adults under 60 years old. Admission at the door is $10. Early reservations are advised. A second evening of dining and dancing planned later on this summer will be held on Wednesday August 17th. The Riverdale Y is located at 5625 Arlington Ave in Riverdale. For further information and registration please call Toby @ 718-548-8200x223.

SCORE Small Business Services Available at BOEDC

SCORE, the premier source for small business advice and mentoring in America, is now offering its services through the offices of the Bronx Overall Economic Development Corporation. SCORE offers small business counseling and other services to the Bronx business community free of charge. SCORE services

are available weekly at the offices of the BOEDC by appointment, which can be made by calling (718) 590-6252. Established October 5, 1964, SCORE is a nonprofit association dedicated to entrepreneur education and the formation, growth and success of small business nationwide. More than 12,400 volunteers at 364 chapters provide individual mentoring-in person and online-and business workshops for aspiring entrepreneurs and small business owners. SCORE has served more than nine million entrepreneurs since 1964. SCORE currently serves more than 350,000 entrepreneurs annually. Based on the findings of the Impact Study of SBA Entrepreneurial Development Resources, SCORE helped create more than 30,000 new jobs nationwide in 2009. One in seven clients created a job. SCORE also helped create 68,432 new small businesses in 2009 according to an SBA report sent to Congress. For more information on SCORE and the services it offers, visit www.scorenyc. org.

Auditions for “A Midsummer Night’s Dream”

Join the Riverdale Y for a new concept in outdoor entertainment! Auditions to be held for SHAKESPEARE IN THE PARK-

ing LOT! Looking for actors ages 16-60. Seeking all levels of experience; those who love Shakespeare and those who want to learn. Auditions will be held Sunday, July 10th from 2:00-4:00PM.. Callbacks will be held that evening. Scenes will be available at the audition. Production dates are August 31 through September 4. Auditions at the Riverdale Y, 5625 Arlington Avenue. Email with any questions.please contact Laurie Walton at 718-548-8200 ext 208. The Y is located at 5625 Arlington Avenue.

E-ZPass On The Go Tags at Henry Hudson Bridge Cash Lanes

It’s a hit! Customers are snapping up E-ZPass On The Go tags, which went on sale in the cash lanes at the Henry Hudson Bridge on June 27th. Through 1 p.m. on Friday, a total of 467 tags were sold. ‘We’re happy to make it easier than ever for motorists to experience the convenience of E-ZPass, which is good for customers, good for the environment and good for the MTA,’ said Bridges and Tunnels President Jim Ferrara. Picking up an MTA E-ZPass On The Go tag E-ZPass will save customers time and money, ($1.70 at Bridges and Tunnels’ major crossings, $1.80 at the Henry

Hudson Bridge), reduce auto emissions from idling vehicles, and it is the most efficient way to collect tolls and keep traffic moving. After purchasing an On The Go tag at the Henry Hudson Bridge for $34, which includes $30 for the tag and a $4 toll for the current trip, the E-ZPass tag can then be used to pay up to $30 worth of tolls if linked to a credit card or $20 in tolls and a $10 tag deposit if it is not. Once used for the first time, customers have 48 hours to register it at: www. or by calling the toll-free number 1-800-333-TOLL. If the tag is not registered, it is deactivated. If popular, sales of On The Go tags could be expanded to MTA’s other six bridges and two tunnels. B&T also sells E-ZPass On The Go tags at 450 locations throughout New York City and Long Island, including the four NYCT Metrocard vans. For retail locations click here: onthego/retail-locations.html For location and times of the Metrocard vans, go to: In the first four months of this year, E-ZPass use is up 3.6 percent to 79.4 percent or an average of about 583,000 vehicles daily.

The RIVERDALE REVIEW • Thursday, July 7, 2011

Summer Serenade at the Riverdale YM-YWHA

Thursday, July 7, 2011 • The RIVERDALE REVIEW


Ditch the Bloomberg Fifth Column

If you want to define the word “failure,” when one comes to talk of economic development, you need look no further than the northwest Bronx, where a group known as the Kingsbridge Riverdale Van Cortlandt Development Corporation is plying their trade to invisible, in fact even counter-productive results. This is what happens when narrow political partisanship gets in the way of common sense. KRVCDC is the group that has been hijacked by the political friends of the deservedly losing City Council candidate Anthony Perez Cassino. Instead of finding ways to put money in the pockets of businessmen and women in our area, what real advocates of the business community would be doing, they are hatching schemes to pick the pockets of local businesses and plotting to drive customers from the area with their aggressive anti-automobile agenda. In essence they are nothing but stalking horses for the Bloomberg administration’s much and rightly maligned Transportation Commissioner Janette Sadik-Khan. Closing streets and creating “plazas” are right out of their playbook to diminish the number of cars in the city and in our communities, a strategy that any merchant will tell you is suicidal, especially in the outer boroughs. And has been rejected by businesses in community after community. Mayor Bloomberg and his “anti” transportation commissioner have a vision of the city, as some sort of new Copenhagen, where bicyclists flood the streets and automobiles, buses and trucks are rarities, banned from many of our thoroughfares. It is true that Copenhagen is a charming place, designed long before the internal combustion engine could even be conceived of. Copenhagen is also a tiny city, one that, unlike massive New York City can be walked end-to-end, side-to-side in a matter of hours. Copenhagen also has an advantage that communities here in the Bronx only dream they could share. It is an international tourist destination, a place where thousands arrive daily, their pockets full of dollars, yen and euros, ready to spend. Let’s face it, nothing like Tivoli Gardens has been conceived of here in The Bronx since the short-lived Freedomland closed its doors a half-century ago. And how many cruise ships call here discharging thousands of tourists? Maybe Copenhagen’s charm is enhanced by the bicycle culture, but our business community cannot afford to fall victim to yet another one of Bloomberg’s euro-fantasies. So when the stooges at KRVCDC come to local merchants and propose closing off a small street, radically changing the traffic pattern, eliminating parking spaces and sell it as some sort of wild chance that folks will bicycle over to lounge away their days on a tiny patch of grass alongside the buses, traffic and noise of Riverdale Avenue and, then – get this – send those merchants an annual bill for the upkeep of this wacky “park,” what should we think? We think that the future of the business community here should not be sacrificed on the altar of Bloomberg’s two-wheeled craziness or of Cassino’s warped ambitions, paid for with the blood of the already put upon business community that continues to suffer. We need a business advocate who will fight the spread of the businesskilling muni-meters, which has greatly diminished business traffic on our commercial streets. Now the city will, in coming weeks, increase parking fees from 75 cents per hour to a full dollar. This represents a doubling of the parking fees under Bloomberg, part of the master’s plan to end “congestion.” Who is advocating to hold the line on these already excessive meter fees? Not Bloomberg and certainly not Cassino’s toadies at KRVCDC. We need real advocates for the business community in our various neighborhoods. Folks who will respond, when the mayor whines that he wants still more blood from our merchants, “no mas!” Perhaps groups working in other north Bronx neighborhoods will extend their hands to their neighbors and free the northwest Bronx from the propaganda and fantasies of what is clearly nothing more than a Bloomberg/Cassino political front, and rid us of their poisonous and counter productive influence. Our political leaders, those who actually get elected to office here, clearly agree, having almost uniformly cut off KRVCDC from wasting any more public funds. Let’s now seek a new vision that puts merchants before politics. It’s time to get down to business, and merchants should avoid putting their trust in a fifth column that owes allegiance to an antagonistic administration and not to them.

The ‘roots’ of the park problem

To The Editor: I applaud Councilman Koppell’s efforts to make the land between 4475 and 4499 Henry Hudson Parkway a park. Although there are parks closer to where I live I walk past this area every morning at 6:00 AM during my daily power walk. To say it’s been an eyesore is an understatement, but there is another issue at play here which I would like to draw to your attention. That is, the condition of the sidewalk that spans this area. Apparently, the roots of a magnificent tree which stands right in front of that property have caused the sidewalk to buckle unevenly. This makes it difficult to walk over for seniors or anyone else that isn’t so surefooted. However, during the winter after a snowstorm this area is downright treacherous. The city makes no effort to remove snow or ice and ice tends to pool where the sidewalk buckles. So, the sidewalk is more of an ice skating than a sidewalk.

Over the past few weeks the city has undertaken a project to re-cement the entire sidewalk along the parkway on that block, but seems to have ignored that area. I certainly don’t know if they plan to continue and do that section of the sidewalk, but they’ve started doing the north end of that block while stopping right before this par-

Schervier honors Archbishop Timothy M. Dolan Bon Secours New York Health System’s Schervier Nursing Care Center honored Archbishop of New York Timothy M. Dolan at its annual ‘Beacon of Hope Gala’ in New Rochelle, N.Y., on May 11 at the Glen Island Harbour Club. More than 200 people attended the Gala which raised funds for Schervier Nursing Care Center to acquire new resident care equipment and conduct various improvements to the facility. ‘As a Catholic healthcare system, we were pleased to

ANDREW WOLF, Editor and Publisher

Note our New Address: 5752 Fieldston Road Bronx, New York 10471 (718) 543-5200 FAX: (718) 543-4206

JOEL PAL Production Manager ROBERT NILVA Marketing Director

ticular area. Although a park would be wonderful in that area I request Mr. Koppell’s help in addressing the safety issue as it pertains to the sidewalk. I’m sure his efforts will be appreciated by many, many people who must walk across this patch of sidewalk regularly. Bob Zolt

CECILIA McNALLY Office Manager MIAWLING LAM Associate Editor

STAFF: Robert Lebowitz, Brendan McHugh, Richard Reay, Paulette Schneider, Lloyd Ultan, Daniel R. Wolf

award Archbishop Dolan with the Ambassador of Good Help Award to celebrate his leadership and devotion in various Catholic and healthcare related issues,’ said Interim CEO Eileen Malo. ‘The Mission of the Bon Secours Health System is to bring compassion to healthcare and to provide help to those in need. Archbishop Dolan provides endless service to the Catholic and healthcare community, making him the perfect recipient of this award.’ The Gala also recognized Donna Sylvestri and Irving Ladimer. Donna Sylvestri has served on the Bon Secours New York Health System Board of Trustees for nine years. Sylvestri also served as board chair for the past three years. Irving Ladimer is well-known to the Schervier community as a tireless volunteer. He has devoted countless hours of community service to the Center.

19 The RIVERDALE REVIEW • Thursday, July 7, 2011

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Thursday, July 7, 2011 • The RIVERDALE REVIEW


Riverdale Review, July 7, 2011  

Weekly newspaper published in Riverdale, NY 10471