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December 2012 ● urbancny.com

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Baby Boomers J

ulius “Pops” Anderson began his last run with the Baby Boomers {over 40} Basketball League November 25 as the ten team conference kicked off its 16th season at SouthWest Community Center. “It was a family decision,” reflects Anderson, who gets the nickname not from having ten children, but from By Walt his mother’s contention that at an early Shepperd age he ate a lot of popsicles. “At my age {51}you think about getting hurt. I can’t take care of my family if I’m hurt.” Anderson holds down two jobs, as a custodian

at the airport and a gym monitor at the downtown YMCA, “I’m going all out for my last season,” he maintains, “letting it all hang out.” Anderson got through his opening game unscathed, playing the entire first half and bits of the second. He maintains his team Showtime, formerly Ballard Construction, will take its eighth league championship because his teammates know to play the positions it takes to win. Indeed, they worked well as a unit in easily thumping Tighten Up. He sees his role, however, as a bit more expansive. “My position is everything,” he notes. “A little bit of point, a little bit of boards, whatever it takes.” A tireless stream of steals, rebounds, assists and three pointers in the season opener illustrated his point.

See Boomers, p. 2

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The Hall Monitor

Voter Suppression: Let’s p. 3 Do It Again! Walt Shepperd:

Whatever happened to p. 9 Benn’s Kitchen? Student of the Month

Educational Opportunity Center Q&A

p. 9

Editorial

Why make the malls merry? Shop at your neighbor’s shop

p. 3

Serving Upstate urban communities since 1989.

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217 South Salina Street, Downtown Syracuse • Mon-Fri 10-5:30 & Sat 11-4 • 315.472.6172


2 December 2012 urbanCNY Boomers

Published monthly by: URBAN CNY Kenneth Jackson Editor and Publisher (315)807-9022 Jennifer Wing Designer Walt Shepperd Senior Editor Send mail c/o Eagle Media 2501 James St., Suite 100 Syracuse, NY 13206 For advertising and editorial: (315) 422-7778 (315) 434-8883 -- Fax kjackson@urbancny.com Printed by: Community Media Group LLC 2501 James St., Suite 100, Syracuse, NY 13206 No part of this publication may be reproduced without written permission. The opinions expressed herein are not necessarily the opinions of Community Media Group LLC or Eagle Newspapers.

Not getting the calls But Anderson holds the typically wistful elder perspective on changing times for the BBBL, recalling the league’s early, “good old days, what we’re trying to get back to.” Part of it is personal. “It’s a lot of pressure because I don’t really get calls the way I used to,” he says. “People tell the refs before the game, ‘You can’t be giving him all those calls, he’s acting.’” And at one point, after contact with a Tighten Up defender, Anderson sprang back in a fall loudly characterized by an animated crowd as “flopping,” urging the referees to call a technical foul. Part of the perspective is a generation gap in attitude. “Winning in this league takes a lot of heart,” he maintains. “You’ve got to have the right guys on your team to win, guys that know the game. A lot of young guys don’t know the game. They think they know the game. They don’t know the game. It’s simple. You’ve got to be unselfish. Gotta hit the boards. Gotta have people divin’ on the floor. And you gotta play defense. A lot of young guys don’t like playing defense.” Who wasn’t there Showtime’s blow out was even more remarkable checking out who wasn’t present for the opening day line-up. The team’s roster includes Nottingham High School sensation Pony Bullock, LeMoyne standout Bobby Chestnut, and SU and NBA alum Howard Triche, whose dominance of the league in past year’s has led fans to refer to the team as “Howard ‘n them.” Triche remembers playing with Anderson at Corcoran High School, when Pops was named All-City and the team took the state championship. Both were recruited by Texas A&M he recalls. He chose SU, he says, because of academics and their offer. Of his passing up college, Anderson says he just didn’t have his priorities in order at the time. Also absent was former SU player and coach, current coach at SUNY Binghamton, Lazarus Sims, who, according to league cofounder Ed Mitchell, is on the roster of B&B Lounge. Mitchell, who logged his court time at Henninger High School, operates the electronic scoreboard and runs a sharp tongue courtside commentary

...from p. 1 as the day’s events unfold, providing a lighter side to the intensity of the competition on the floor. Mitchell coached B&B to two league championships, and won one with Bricktown. Back in the day, he coached Pioneer Homes to a championship in the junior division of the prestigious Donny Fielder Tournament. A family affair Mitchell and co-founder James “Puddin” Jackson agree that the 18 weeks of Sundays, with three weeks of post season playoffs, have created a series of social events, where everybody knows everybody, and looks forward to gathering after the games for food and frolic. The traditional sumptuous off court soul food spread was absent for the first round of games, but the founders promised it would be on tap the following week. Another tradition was loudly announced as Joe Parks spun sounds which fostered some head bobbing and finger popping, although Mitchell kept asking people to remind the DJ that it was 2012. Jackson recalls the league’s founding. Playing in an over 40 county rec league, he wanted to bring that experience to the local community of color, providing a positive outlet for the energy of older players who still had game and needed a place to show it. He and Mitchell enlisted John “Wags” Wagner—who, at 66, is still playing in the league, and on opening Sunday showed he can still run—and approached SouthWest’s Executive Director Jesse Dowdell for use of the facility’s gym, which was no problem as the former college cager at Harden Simmons signed onto a roster on the spot. Among the new faces at last month’s season opener was Jackson’s son Derek, who played two years at Boston College and two at Florida Atlantic, now a teammate with “Wags” on a Flav Unit team which could pose a serious challenge to Showtime for the league’s top spot. But for now, Anderson is taking it one game at a time. He is, however, putting some thought to what comes after the season is over. “My goal is to start coaching,” he says, “trying to help the youth learn from the mistakes I made, trying to keep it going in the community, trying to give back and help stop some of this violence.”


urbanCNY

Opinion

Voter Suppression: Let’s Do It Again!

Voting rights have been under attack as state legislatures across the United States passed voter-suppression laws under the false assertion of widespread voter fraud. Votersuppression laws take on many forms which collectively deny citizens the right to vote. The ACLU states, “Over thirty states considered laws that would require voters to present government-issued photo ID in order to vote. Studies suggest that up to 11 percent of American citizens lack such ID, and would be required to navigate the administrative burdens to obtain it or forego the right to vote entirely.” During my stint in graduate school at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, I participated in the 1980 Democratic primary. I voted for Ted Kennedy against Jimmy Carter. At the time residents of the Badger State were proud of their tradition of same-day registration. I appeared at the polling place, showed them my graduate I.D. and my Wisconsin Bell phone bill and was registered to vote on the spot. This was a far cry from stories I’d been told by my father who faced literacy tests in the state of Alabama which were ostensibly designed to assess his qualifications to vote. These old wounds opened, wounds thought to have been healed by passage of the Voting Rights Act. Meanwhile, neo-conservative-tinged infection oozed from the remnants of the Jim Crow South replaced during the voter-suppression fight by a descendant referred to by elder civil rights leaders as “James E. Crow, Esq. “ As a child I’d watch The CBS Evening News with Walter Cronkite and view in real-time people being beaten in the streets for standing up just for the right to cast a ballot. This was not in my Salina School Elementary School classroom, this was in my living room, at the kitchen table and in subsequent trips “back home” down South to visit. Decades after leaving Madison, Wisconsin, I see the tide has turned and the Badger State, along with more than two dozen others throughout America, threw everything at voter-suppression efforts including the electoral kitchen sink to prevent potential Obama supporters from casting their ballots in November’s most hotly contested race. These actions weren’t cloaked as if they were plot devices on an old Star Trek episode. Suppressive actions taken by conservative Republicans were crystal clear. A public official in Pennsylvania even stated that, once their new voter-registration rules were adopted, “This guarantees we can deliver the state to Mitt Romney.” By reducing the number of days and hours of early voting and creating long lines, it was thought that people who’d vote for Democrats would just simply go away! If time is money then standing eight hours in line until midnight to cast a ballot is a certainly a poll tax! On election night along with millions of Americans I was awestruck by scenes on television of long lines in the state of Florida where people had to wait up to six hours just to cast a ballot. 2012 has proven to be an exciting year for AfricanAmericans as we appeared at the voting booth in numbers never seen before. You see, for decades people have sat at tables in shopping centers, attended community events and placed “Motor Voter” rules at the DVM all in efforts to attract people to the polls. All it took was the threat of reducing access or taking away that sacred right to get people off their butts and realize the responsibility of citizenship, our right to vote. Thank you neo-conservatives and right-wing Republicans (I think they murdered their moderates) for doing what activists have tried to accomplish for years. So, let’s just be patient and wait four years and perhaps the Republicans can do America a favor: “Let’s do it again.”

December 2012

3

Editorial

Ken Why make the malls merry? Jackson The Hall Monitor

What The Constitution says about voting… “The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State... ... on account of race, color, or previous condition of servitude...” Fifteenth Amendment, United States Constitution ... on account of sex.”

Nineteenth Amendment, United States Constitution ... by reason of failure to pay any poll tax or other tax.” Twenty-Fourth Amendment, United States Constitution ... on account of age.” Twenty-Sixth Amendment, United States Constitution

Shop at your neighbor’s shop

During this holiday season Americans will spend billions of dollars on gifts for Christmas, Kwanzaa and other cultural and religious celebrations. As shopping mall parking lots overflow there’s another world free of the traffic jams or and long lines at the cash registers always found at the big-box stores. Throughout the city of Syracuse are pockets of retail establishments with plenty of parking and products that include fine jewelry, furniture, appliances, clothes and cosmetics. There are restaurants serving award-winning entrees. In these establishments you won’t dance to jingle-jangle music or sit on Santa Claus’s lap. But you will delight in stores with selections appealing to every demographic that lives here. There are stores in every residential community of Syracuse, downtown, South Salina Street, Armory Square, Butternut Street, Grand Avenue and North Salina Street. Colvin and South Salina is a busy intersection where there’s a growing African-American retail presence. South Avenue boasts Jamaican cuisine and African soaps, art and other cultural items of West African origin. Future developments may include a PriceRite supermarket and a combined health and nutrition and shopping experience at a new Nojaim’s scheduled to break ground by year’s end. On Westcott Street the joint is jumpin’ with a full-service credit union and restaurants with tables full of customers even on week nights. People living in this area can buy groceries at a food cooperative or patronize the new PriceRite which is within walking distance for many. The Near West Side has South Geddes Street filling in with Hispanic restaurants, insurance services and a newly opened children’s dentistry center. There’s longtime business City Hardware has converged with newly built designer homes of the future and Syracuse University’s ambitious “Connective Corridor. WCNY’s new broadcast center is in its final stages of construction off South Weet Street while massive investments have spurred housing and other development s designed to radically transform this census tract that was once the second-poorest in all America! West Onondaga Street has also been infused with new and relocated businesses, used furniture outlets and other important community amenities are coming together. As a gateway into South Avenue, Rite Aid provides products and services that anchor neighborhood economies just as the new Walgreens in Eastwood has reinvigorated that old but still vibrant residential neighborhood. Tipperary Hill continues to grow with an expanded Brooklyn Pickle delicatessen and the Burnet Newsstand, a new, full-service convenience store complete with Lotto and selection of products that don’t include hair extensions dangling over chicken wings! As you “shop until we drop” this holiday season, don’t forget your local neighborhood retailers. Why make the malls merry when you can brighten your neighbors’ businesses instead?

If I Were Santa’s Helper By Dr. Joan R. Hillsman Music Educator If I were Santa’s helper, I know what I’d do; I’d wrap enough presents To send to all of you. If I were Santa’s helper, I would pack love, peace and joy; To every man and woman And every girl and boy. Oh, I’d pack peace, happiness and love And all good things that comes from above. That’s not all that I would do, I would pack best wishes for the whole year through. Merry Christmas and Happy New Year!


4 December 2012 urbanCNY

Business News

Good Time Banquet Hall The Good Time Banquet Hall (P.A.C.C.) is located at 526 Teall Avenue. “Good Time” has just recently come back as a much needed multipurpose hall with full commercial kitchen a bar and plenty of parking. According to building Manager Mickey Vendetti, “It’s been here as a Polish club for 80 years. It was closed down for the last 15 years I came in and remodeled it now were catering to small weddings, retirement arties, birthdays. We can seat 350 people comfortable for dinner. It’s an old fashioned dance hall that’s what it is.” Good Time Banquet Hall will not only rent the facility for an event catering is available featuring a full menu. If organizers would rather cook their own

food you can also utilize the commercial kitchen. On Saturday, December 22, 7pm-11pm Good Time Banquet Hall will host a Christmas Party featuring the band, Soul Mine. Soul Mine is a High Energy Dance, Funk, and R&B band from Syracuse, NY. Soul Mine continues to thrill audiences ranging from back-tie events, country clubs, casinos and night clubs. Tickets are $15 at Door $10 Advance, your evening Includes Antipasto, Sandwich Buffet, Coffee, Cash Bar. Advance Tickets are now on sale at Gilligan’s Pub, 3601 James Street 8 a.m.-2 a.m. For more information including booking the facility call Mickey at 345-1002.

Soul Mine

Urban CNY’s Holiday Shopping Guide Bersani’s Jewelry 217 S Salina St., Syracuse, NY; 472-6172 Diamonds are everyone’s best friend, and Bersani Gallery has everything from traditional settings to cool, updated styles perfect for city life. Our gemstones are of all varieties, from semi-precious to precious stones in settings that compliment any outfit. We also have a large showcase of urban accessories that are perfect for any occasion. We offer a layaway program with only 1/3 down and 60 days to complete your transaction. At Bersani Gallery you can sell your gold and diamonds, knowing you’re in the hands of a trusted local business. Blak Licour ‘Wines and Spirits” 2032 S. Salina St., Syracuse, NY ; 565-4311 Blak Licour is a boutique wine and spirit shop located in the historic Kings Park neighborhood of Syracuse, NY. We provide a diverse selection of fine wines and upscale spirits, coupled with personalized service to our customers. Our outstanding scale of products will meet any customer’s needs. Please take the time to browse our inventory online, and if you have questions or suggestions email us at info@blaklicour.com. Or call 565-4311. 7 Styles Deli 2028-30 S. Salina St., Syracuse, NY; 425-1925 7 Styles Deli is a Convenience Store located near the corners of E. Colvin and S. Salina Street. “7 Styles is operating one of a growing number of AfricanAmerican Owned Convenience Stores in Syracuse”. With a full cooler of beverages ”Coldest Beer in Town”, snacks, grocery items and anything you’d find at a store in your neighborhood economic center. 7 Styles opens Monday-Thursday 12 noon until 1:00 a.m. Fri.-Sat, 12 noon- 2 a.m. closes late for those who can’t find a store open. Hungary? This home of the “Home of the Craig Burger” Feminine Touch Fabrics 2714 Erie Boulevard East, Syracuse, NY Plenty of free parking; 399-4099 Feminine Touch Fabrics was originally established by Fran-

ces Hyde in New Hartford, NY. For 28 years her business thrived. She decided to retire in March, 2008. Linda Miller Poore and Cheryl Ann Costa formed Dragon Lady Media, LLC which owns and operates Feminine Touch Fabrics. Conveniently located off 690 at Midler, on Erie Boulevard—next to JR Junction Train & Hobby, and across from Sam’s Club. Centro bus #168 Erie/ Shoppingtown Bus stop right in front of store. Jamison’s Beauty Supply 715 S. Geddes St., Syracuse, NY; 436-3981 Hours: 10 a.m. -7 p.m. Hair and beauty supplies including a variety of children’s hair beads,” Kiti Kiti” products, soaps, skin and hair care products. Hair of different lengths and colors, wigs and much more, find Jamison’s Beauty Supply at 715 S. Geddes St. Syracuse. Jerk Hut 440 South Ave., Syracuse, NY ; 478-5303 “Jerk Hut” where you will find the finest cuisine in the ‘cuse. All meals prepared fresh daily with Jamaican seasoning and spices. Jerk seasoning and spices are available for sale. Monday - Thursday 11:00am - 9:00pm / Friday & Saturday 11:00am - 9:00pm

Right Hair is located in a well-appointed salon several rooms hold the equipment of the trade hair dryers, sinks, and the main room and chair where Michelle works her magic. In the hair business for over 30 years Michelle does all hair styles specializing in ethnic hair, especially African-American styles. There’s a Facebook page it’s called Right Hair on State and on You Tube she’s listed as Hair by Michelle you can look at videos. The social media allows viewer to see examples of Michelle’s styling skills. QD’s Home Cookin’ Valley Diner 4710 S. Salina Street , Syracuse, NY 13205; New Number! 299-8351 Nestled between several buildings near the intersection of Seneca Turnpike and S. Salina St. is QD’s. At QD’s people regularly greet each other as regulars come and go a diner that’s become a culinary island in the desert of fast food with few choices. Owned by Quiana Seymour and Dave McSweeney . QD’s Diner and QD’s Home Cookin’ have created a diner with good food, good service and a loyal diverse clientele it’s shown by the number of regulars greeting each other on any given morning. Timbuktu African Imports “Your Kwanzaa Headquarters” 512 South Avenue, Syracuse NY, 13204; 472-2888

Jerome Cleaning 201 E Jefferson St., Syracuse, NY 13202; 863-1377 Tired of dealing with cleaning companies that don’t treat your house the way it should be? Then what you need is a cleaning professional that cares about your home the way you do. Jerome Cleaning is the professional you were looking for. “With attention to detail and you being top priority I am confident that I can offer you customer satisfaction at an affordable price. Give us a call today! I promise you won’t regret it!” House of Hair 234 Burt St., Syracuse, NY; 491-6358 Ted and Kevin Montgomery are owners of the barbershop named House of Hair which has been in business at 234 Burt Street since December 1995. There are 6 barbers; all are either relatives and/or friends who’ve known each other since childhood, Bob Owens, Will Brown, Jason Hall and Craig Corridors. Celebrities that stopped in for a haircut include; Tyler Perry, Keith Washington, televisions Hangin’ with Mr. Cooper’s Mark Curry, Eddie Flutch, Dwight Braxton- former world boxing champion in the light heavyweight and cruiserweight divisions. If you need directions or additional information about House of Hair call Ted & Kevin at 315-491-6358 Right Hair 1211 N. State St., Syracuse, NY 13206; 479-6438

Timbuktu African Imports is owned by Kwasi Owusu. Kwasi began the store in order to expose Syracusans on a dayto-day basis to African history, culture and events through his import store. Kwasi felt the need to open this store because children often do not learn about Africa in school. Timbuktu was started with $250 in 1995 because Kwasi noticed that no other cultural store existed on the south side of Syracuse. The store has African paintings, Kente clothes, straw hats, handbags, books, cards, jewelry, oils and incense and fabrics. Timbuktu’s customers are community residents, educators, students and anyone interested in African history.


urbanCNY

Health News

December 2012

5

Protecting your family from the flu Influenza is a serious disease that can lead to hospitalization and sometimes even death. Every flu season is different, and influenza infection can affect people differently. Even healthy people can get very sick from the flu and spread it to others. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, over a period of 31 seasons between 1976 and 2007, estimates of flu-associated deaths in the United States range from a low of about 3,000 to a high of about 49,000 people. During a regular flu season, about 90 percent of deaths occur in people 65 years and older. The “seasonal flu season” in the United States can begin as early as October and

last as late as May. During this time, flu viruses are circulating in the population. An annual seasonal flu vaccine (either the flu shot or the nasal-spray flu vaccine) is the best way to reduce the chances that you will get seasonal flu and lessen the chance that you will spread it to others. When more people get vaccinated against the flu, less flu can spread through that community. How do flu vaccines work? Flu vaccines (the flu shot and the nasal-spray flu vaccine (LAIV)) cause antibodies to develop in the body about two weeks after vaccination. These antibodies provide protection against

ALAN BYER VOLVO

infection with the viruses that are in the vaccine. The seasonal flu vaccine protects against three influenza viruses that research indicates will be most common during the upcoming season. Three kinds of influenza viruses commonly circulate among people today: influenza B viruses, influenza A (H1N1) viruses, and influenza A (H3N2) viruses. Each year, one flu virus of each kind is used to produce seasonal influenza vaccine. Who Should Get Vaccinated This Season? Everyone who is at least 6 months of age should get a flu vaccine this season. It’s especially important for some people to get vaccinated.

1230 WEST GENESEE ST., SYR www.ALANBYERVOLVO.com

Those people include: People who are at high risk of developing serious complications like pneumonia if they get sick with the flu. This includes: People who have certain medical conditions including asthma, diabetes, and chronic lung disease; Pregnant women; People 65 years and older; People who live with or care for others who are high risk of developing serious complications. This includes: household contacts and caregivers of people with certain medical conditions including asthma, diabetes, and chronic lung disease. Get your flu shot today: Call Syracuse Community Health Center at 476-7921.

(315) 471-6107


6 December 2012 urbanCNY

www.schcny.com

A Healthcare Home of Choice Please join me in welcoming Dr. Hugh Forbes to Syracuse Community Health Center. We are committed to retaining and recruiting highly qualified Providers who are committed to excellence and the highest quality of care for our patients. It is our equal commitment to provide affordable and responsive care to residents of the Syracuse Community. Thank you for placing your trust in us.

OCTOBER 2012 SCHC

Sincerely,

Dr. Ruben P. Cowart President and CEO Dr. Hugh Forbes has joined the SCHC Family of health care providers as a physician at Syracuse Community Health Center in the Obstetrics and Gynecology (OB/ GYN) Department located at 819 S. Salina Street. Syracuse Community Heath Center, Inc. is comprised of 15 healthcare delivery sites, serving more than 45,000 patients annually in the Central New York Community.

Dr. Hugh Forbes

Dr. Forbes received his Bachelors of Science Degree from Seton Hall University, South Orange, New Jersey and completed his medical degree at the MD University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey.

Dr. Forbes has over 17 years of experience in the provision of OB/ GYN services. He has held several positions, which include a private practice in Carthage, New York; serving at a Carthage Area Hospital, Carthage, New York; and serving at the Middletown Community Health Center in Port Jervis, New York. Dr. Forbes is a diplomate of the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology. Syracuse Community Health Center, Inc. is committed to retaining and recruiting highly qualified providers who are committed to excellence and the highest quality of care for our patients. For more than 30 years, SCHC has provided high quality health care services in Syracuse and its surrounding neighborhoods for families who might not otherwise have access to medical services.

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urbanCNY

Community News NAACP Chairman Roslyn Brock to keynote 2013 Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration By Kelly Homan Rodoski Roslyn M. Brock, chairman of the national board of directors for the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), will be the keynote speaker for Syracuse University’s 28th annual Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration, “Yesterday’s Dream, Tomorrow’s Promise,” on Saturday, Jan. 19, 2013, in the Carrier Dome. The annual celebration is among the largest university-sponsored events in the United States to commemorate King. “It’s been an honor to work on a committee with individuals who share my passion for the ideals in which Martin Luther King Jr stood for,” says Michelle Singletary, chair of the 2013 Martin Luther King Jr. Celebration Committee. “Dr. King said, ‘Life’s most persistent and urgent question is, What are you doing for others?’ Roslyn Brock epitomizes that attitude by being involved with the NAACP for over 25 years. Roslyn Brock and Dr. King both had a passion to ignite/reignite social activism for our local communities and across the world. Dr. King will always be a part of our history and the changes he made to the social culture of the United States changed not only his generation but all future generations.” The evening program, which will include the presentation of the 2013 Unsung Hero Awards and entertainment, begins at 5:30 p.m. and is free and open to the public. Communication Access Realtime Translation (CART) will be provided. Other accommodations can be requested; please call Elizabeth Cronk at Hendricks Chapel at eacronk@syr.edu by Jan. 11. Tickets for the dinner, which precedes the program at 4 p.m., are $25 for the general public and $15 for students without meal plans. Students with meal plans will be charged for one dinner. Tickets will be available on Monday, Dec. 3. For ticket information, call Hendricks Chapel at 315-443-5044. Information on the celebration can be found at hendricks.syr.edu. The 2013 Martin Luther King Jr. Unsung Heroes Awards will be presented to Adena Rochelson, an eighth grader at Wellwood Middle School in Fayetteville (youth/teen); JoVan Collins of Syracuse (community adult); Brenda Muhammad, a graduate student at Syracuse University (SU/ESF student); and Engineers Without Borders at Syracuse University (student group). A community festival celebrating arts, culture and education in the Syracuse community will be held on Saturday, Jan. 26, from noon-4 p.m. at Frazer Elementary School, 741 Park St.

December 2012

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8 December 2012 urbanCNY

AT T E N T I O N ! ! ! After Christmas, think twice before throwing away that no longer needed item! Please donate your used or no longer needed Books, Lap Tops, Computers, Cell Phones, Medical Equipment, Back Packs, Summer Clothes, Shoes, Sneakers, Sandals, etc. These items will be taken to Ghana and distributed to people in need.

For more information, call 315-428-9947 “The Cultural Center� “Out of Africa�

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Entertainment News Community Folk Art Center participates in CNY85 Giving Project Dec. 1-31

Community Folk Art Center is one of the finalists of the CNY85 Giving Project and we need your help to win! As finalists, we are in the running for a $8,500 grant from the Community Foundation of Central New York. The organization that receives the most votes in December will receive funding for a project that engages the CNY community. With $8,500 we could expand our Journey Through Music of the African Diaspora (JMAD) Music Series to include enriching and engaging workshops for our concert attendees. Voting is open from Dec. 1 - Dec. 31. Please vote every day! You are allowed one vote per day.

Vote.election-america.com/cny85/login.htm.


urbanCNY

Community News

December 2012

9

Whatever happened to Benn’s Kitchen?

frustrated and embarrassed by the negaBy Walt Shepperd tive coverage. “Every time something Khalid Bey remembers Benn’s Kitchen. happens on South Avenue, they figure Now Common Councilor representing the it’s B&B,” McDonald maintains. “South 4th District, which contained both the East Avenue is quite long.” Washington Street and later South Salina Most recently, reporting in the OctoStreet locations of the once reputed soul ber 8 Post-Standard on a vigil for Rodney food restaurant, Bey recalls, “It was a comMaddux, who was shot on South Avenue munity gathering place. The owner was well from a nearby parking lot while trying to acquainted with the people in the immediate break up a fight in the street, and a follow area, including some of the kids. It certainly up noting that a video of the suspect had had its mark on the community. Some of us been released, even though the October still wonder what happened with it.” There 11 piece noted positive steps taken by seems to be a consensus among those in the the B&B owners, seemed to harken the local communities of color who recall the negative images. institution founded in 1955 by Henry Benn Denham notes that there is never meand Jimmy Kitchen, later known as Roy and dia coverage of the positive events, food Benn’s, that one of the things that happened for block parties, finger printing and ID was it suffered as a generally negative referproducing for neighborhood children, ence point in the media. sponsorship of basketball, bowling and Police Chief Frank Fowler remembers golf teams, but the minute violent inciBenn’s Kitchen. “There was Rev.{Jeffel}Mike behind the counter, greeting everybody at Common Councilor Khalid Bey dents happen on South Avenue, B&B gets the blame. “You would think they would the door with his animated voice and warm welcome.” Mike bought the restaurant in 1979, after Henry come down and talk to us,” McDonald says of the general Benn’s nephew Roy had become part of the business. It media coverage. Fowler cites questions of accuracy in that coverage. “On became a fixture, open 24 hours on weekends and until 3 a.m. on weekdays, but its reputation in the larger commu- at least three occasions,” he observes, “they {Denham and nity suffered from late night incidents in the surrounding McDonald} have come to me and said it’s reported in the blocks. “It developed a bad name,” Roy Benn observed back paper {Post-Standard}like this, alleging they got the information from the police report, and I show them the police in the day, “and all we ever did was sell food.” Fowler agrees with the consensus about negative media report, and it’s not there.” He adds that the B&B owners coverage, “Because it was a landmark for that area, and have been extremely cooperative with the police departpeople, rather than say a location, would use it as a refer- ment. “They have security measures in place as a result of ence point.” Fowler also agrees with another consensus in numerous conversations with the police, with them saying, those communities, that the B&B Lounge on South Avenue ‘What would you have us do?’ Over the years they’ve done is currently suffering as a similar reference point in the everything we’ve asked them to do to keep their business media. “The similarity is the way incidents are reported,” safe and to turn away undesirables. Running a bar in the he observes. “Something happens on the outside, and the city is a tough business.” Bey sees mixed feelings resulting from the coverage. owners have zero control over it.” Billy Ray Denham and Billy Ray McDonald, owners “You have people who aren’t out there, but go on what of the B&B since its founding 22 years ago, say they area they see in the media. So they feel maybe B&B shouldn’t be

Give the Gift of a Lifetime: Music

Many people are wondering what gifts to give at Christmas, how would the person like it, and more importantly will they value it? Many who received gifts in previous years are holding on to them. Why not consider “Re-gifting”. Passing along valuable gifts to friends and loved ones is appreciated by the recipient. Better still, you can give the “gift of music” through Joan Hillsman’s Music Network, Inc. (JHMN) by investing and By Dr. Joan providing music lessons to a youth, adult or senior. Music is a lifetime Hillsman experience for people of all ages. The research shows that it is a life-long experience. Youth who participate in the arts score better on the SAT in many areas. For youth and early childhood experiences, music training is vital to the curriculum. Early training helps to develop the brain in certain areas and provides the child a means of self expression and creativity. Adults and seniors yearn to enhance their quality of living by playing the piano, singing ,engaging in leisure activities, building self-esteem, as well as improving their overall health. Music is therapeutic. A personal testimony to its effective was when a senior citizen approached me and said, “I have always wanted to play the piano, but I was from a large family and my parents could not sacrifice to give me lessons. Is it too late now, at my age, and what does it cost? The rest of the story is history. I offered to give her lessons at no cost. This is not an unusual story. At JHMN, Inc. one of my goals is to provide quality experiences and affordable arts lessons. Others, even parents of youth, especially in these economic times, have similar stories to inquire about participation in the arts. We all can give a gift of a life-time, for these experiences would never be forgotten. If you are willing to sponsor or co-sponsor in this effort, contact me at jhilllsman@twcny.rr.com. We are in the process of Winter Registration. Classes are limited. Enroll now! Invest in music: It’s worth it!

B&B was founded 22 years ago. there. Then you have patrons who have said to me, ‘None of that stuff happens at B&B.’ You’re talking about a mainstay on the Southwest Side of the city. There aren’t that many social activities for people to choose from after 6 o’clock. In the African-American community the B&B is one of , if not the most popular place in the city. It attracts a lot of people. They danger of it not being there probably has far reaching implications that people haven’t considered.” Bey also raises the question central to the issue of media coverage referencing the B&B. “What’s interesting,” he notes, “to be frank, if similar efforts are made in other places. I’m referring to mentioning specific locations when reporting incidents around the city. It’s unwarranted how certain areas are portrayed in the media, and how incidents happening near the B&B are reported as happening at the B&B.” One answer has arisen recently on Marshall Street, where Acropolis Pizza has become a landmark reference point for violent incidents happening near but not at the facility. Police have cited the 2 a.m. bar closing time as a factor in the incidents, and suggested Acropolis close at 1:30. Management seems resistant, however, since a good portion of their business comes after the bars close. Nor do they feel it is their responsibility to install security cameras on the street.

Student of the Month – November 2012

Barbara Cooper, Business Office Technology Program

Can you tell us a little about yourself? I am originally from Syracuse, N.Y. I am a mother of two. I enjoy family and politics. I came to EOC because I became unemployed in April after years of service. What do you like most about your class? Why? Working independently and learning to achieve. What is your favorite subject and why? I don’t have a favorite subject. However, I do like politics and enjoy watching MSNBC. I enjoy working with Microsoft Word; it is so fascinating to see all you can do. What are your future education or career goals? I would like to make the next move to study medical billing & coding or go back to work. What do you think about SUNY EOC? There are so many benefits and opportunities at SEOC: health fairs, resume classes, career boards to glance at, etc. All are very meaningful. Faculty Comments: What makes Barbara your choice for Student of the Month? “Barbara is a hard worker. She wants to succeed in all her studies. She gets along with her classmates and they all enjoy working together. It is a joy to see her in class. She will be a success in her next job.” – Minnie Jenkins, BOT Instructor At the Syracuse Educational Opportunity Center, we are proud to have Barbara as our Student of the Month for November 2012 and we wish her the best in all her future endeavors.


10 December 2012 urbanCNY

Entertainment News Holiday events

First Night Syracuse December 31

Forget finding a babysitter and paying an expensive cover charge. This year your New Year’s Eve fun is right in your own backyard. AmeriCU Credit Union’s First Night is back! Last year, First Night brought more than 8,800 people to Onondaga Lake Park for a family-friendly New Year’s Eve celebration. The event will also have lots of activities for younger revelers, including laser tag, infatables, crafts, video games, a family dance party, and glow-in-the dark mini golf. Stick around for the stroke of midnight because the orange ball drop returns, followed by an amazing fireworks display to ring in 2013 the right way. This event is perfect for families of any age! AmeriCU Credit Union’s First Night will also feature an opportunity to walk through Lights on the Lake. How do you get in on all the fun? Pre-sale tickets will be available for $5. Day-of tickets will be sold for $8. Ages 5 and under free! Show your tickets at the Dunkin’ Donuts stand and receive one free com-

plimentary hot beverage at the festival (while supplies last)! Coffee will also be available for sale. Tickets are on sale now at all area Wegmans locations and online

The evening’s events

6:00pm-10:00pm- Lights on the Lake Stroll 6:00pm- Midnight - McDonalds Family Zone & Heated Tent activities Inside the Heated Tent Ongoing: face painting, coloring & activities for the entire family! 6-9pm- Magic, balloon animals Coco The Clown Bucko with balloonology Magical John: Stilts and Juggling Outside the Heated Tent

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Onondaga’s own faculty members. The 2012 Faculty Exhibition includes the artworks of: Phil Austin, Anne Novado Cappuccilli, Jill Dosher, Randy Elliott, Meredith Cantor-Feller, Merilee Freeman, Allen “Skip� Frost, Deborah Haylor-Macdowell, Chris Madden, Paul Molesky, Richard Pardee, Donalee Peden Wesley, G. Stephan Ryan, Elisha Stasko, Lida Suchy, Nick Tadisc, Miranda Traudt, Gary Trento, David Webster, Richard Williams, Mark Williamson, and Mark Zawatski.

Joey DeFrancesco Trio

Lights on the Lake

Celebrating 23 years, Lights on the Lake is a two mile long drive through light extravaganza featuring life-size displays, themed sections and a memorable grand finale. Onondaga Lake Park 106 Lake Drive Liverpool, NY 13088 Time: 5:00 pm – 10:00 pm Cost: $15 Friday-Sunday per vehicle; $10 Monday-Thursday per vehicle Age Level: Everyone Telephone: 315-453-6712

Art at Onondaga Community College

Gallery Exhibit: OCC Faculty Art & Photography Exhibition

Gallery at the Ann Felton Multicultural Center Mon., Nov. 12 – Fri., Dec. 14 Monday - Friday: 9 a.m. - 4 p.m. Artist Reception: Wed., Nov. 14, 11 a.m. – noon A mixed media show with works from

Friday December 14, 2012 at 7 pm in Storer Joey DeFrancesco comes from a musical family. His Grandfather Joseph DeFrancesco (his name sake) was a reed man. And of course his father “Papa� John DeFrancesco is a fine jazz organist in his own right. At the age of 4 Joey began taking a strong interest in the organ. By the time he was five, he was playing Jimmy Smith songs verbatim. As the years went on his interest and love for the organ and music grew stronger. From the ages of 5-10 his father would bring him to his own gigs and let him sit in. At 10 years of age he began to play in a Band in Philadelphia, which featured legendary players Hank Mobley on Tenor Saxophone, and “Philly� Joe Jones on the Drums. At 16 he signed an exclusive recording contract with Columbia Records, releasing his first record “All Of Me� at 17. This record was single handedly responsible for the great resurgence of the Hammond sound in popular music. See Events, p. 11


urbanCNY Events

December 2012

11

...from p. 10

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