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Friday, May 24, 2019

Scenes From Chabad Of Roosevelt Island Annual Lag Ba"Omer Celebration At Blackwell Park - Kids Playing, Adults Kibitzing, Tasty Shmores, A Little Education And A Bonfire

The annual Chabad Of Roosevelt Island Lag Ba'Omer Bonfire Celebration took place yesterday in Blackwell Park. Scott Piro shares these photos and video of the event.




I’m not a #chabadnik, but I sort of am when I hang with the Duchmans. . I had a blast at their #LagBaOmer #bonfire. I had intended to stay only an hour...then that stretched into 90 minutes, and it wound up being a 3 hour outing. . ▪️Lovely buffet 🌽🍔🥗🌭 ▪️Cool education about this non-Biblical holiday 📚 ▪️Bonfire 🔥 ▪️”Shmores” — really s’mores, but the Duchmans have a cute tweak to make a reference to 🥯 shmears, I think ▪️Kids playing ▪️Adults kibitzing . I did not feel melancholy or regretful to be back on the island. Nor did I feel I had to move back. I only felt happy to be there. I stayed in Blackwell Park the whole time, so didn’t visit my building or see any of my non-Chabad Island friends — except for two who stopped to talk when they walked by. . But seeing ⛴ go by...Ravenswood 🏭 in the distance...glimpses of the red 🚌 going by — it only made me feel very sweet and happy, like a cozy slipper or something. . Watching Rabbi Zalman enthrall the kids with a good show combining education, spectacle and activities was enjoyable as ever. Chatting friends Oren and Nechama, meeting new friends Jo and Zvi — it was all such a happy occasion. . 🔥✡️🔥✡️🔥
A post shared by ScottyP (@scottpiro) on





A post shared by ScottyP (@scottpiro) on

Help Save A Life - Roosevelt Island RIRA & RISA Blood Drive Advanced Sign Up Saturday May 25 & June 1 At Good Shepherd Plaza Farmers Market - Blood Donation On June 8 Roosevelt Island Day

You can help save a life by donating blood.


The Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) will be signing up volunteer donors at Good Shepherd Plaza next to the Saturday Farmers Market tomorrow and the next 2 Saturdays for the annual Roosevelt Island Day June 8 Blood Drive hosted by the Roosevelt Island Seniors Association (RISA).

According to this year's RIRA Roosevelt Island Blood Drive Committee Chair Janine Schaefer
RIRA Blood Drive

Sponsored by Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) and hosted by Roosevelt Island Seniors Association (RISA)

The Blood drive is a big part of Roosevelt Island Day and has been an annual event for years. Volunteers will be sitting at Farmer's Market every Saturday from May 18th until the day of the event June 8th, to help people to sign up to donate in person from 10am to 4pm at the Community Room Senior Center 546 Main Street.

RIRA donated 36 pints of blood positively affecting the lives of over 105 New Yorkers in June 2018. If each donor this year brings a colleague, a family member, a friend or foe. We can double these results.

WALK-INS WELCOME

All donors must provide identification and should eat and be well hydrated prior to blood donation. Appointments are appreciated, but walk-ins welcome.

There is also a link for making online appointments for donating blood during the June 8 Roosevelt Island Day.
Here's a report from 2018 Roosevelt Island blood drive including video explaining how to donate



by two of the RIRA volunteers, Frank Farance and Bafode Drame.

Please help if you can - Donate Blood
.

I Could Get Used To This, Good News For Roosevelt Island Transportation This Weekend - F Train Service To And From Manhattan, Both Tram Cabins Working And East River Ferry Service For Fifth Weekend In A Row - Ferry Service Expanded To Brooklyn Navy Yard Now



Good news, for the fifth week in a row, Roosevelt Island residents will have weekend F Trains running to and from Manhattan, both Tram Cabins operating as well as the East River Astoria Route Ferry service.

Here's the new NYC Ferry 2019 Ferry Summer Schedule.

as well as service to the Brooklyn Navy Yard on the Roosevelt Island Astoria route.

Sponsored Post - Check Out Roosevelt Island Gristedes May 24 To May 30 Product Offerings, Specials & Sales Items - Free Delivery With $75 Or More Order

The Roosevelt Island Gristedes Supermarket


invites you to check out their May 24 - May 30 Product Offerings, Specials & Sales items.

Don't forget the 10% Roosevelt Island Seniors Discount on Tuesday and Sign Up for the Gristedes Diamond Loyalty Rewards Program.

More Gristedes Supermarket information


available at their


 web site, Facebook Page and Twitter feed

Thursday, May 23, 2019

Roosevelt Island Riverwalk 341 Unit Affordable Housing Building 8 Status Update On Public Agenda At RIOC May 27 Real Estate Committee Meeting - Also Riverwalk 9 And Manhattan Park Ground Lease Negotiations Agenda Items In Executive Session Closed To Public

The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Real Estate Advisory Committee (REDAC) is meeting next week to discuss the status of currently under construction



Riverwalk Building 8 (341 units of affordable housing) in a session open to the public. Followed by an Executive Session discussion, closed to the public, about ground lease negotiations for the future Riverwalk Building 9 (market rate rental) as well as amending the Manhattan Park ground lease.

According to the May 29 RIOC REDAC Agenda:

PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that a meeting of the Real Estate Development Advisory Committee of the RIOC Board of Directors will be held on Wednesday, May 29, 2019 at 5:30 P.M. at the RIOC Administrative Office, 591 Main Street, Roosevelt Island, New York.

AGENDA:

Status Report on Southtown Building 8

Chair’s Motion for Executive Session to Discuss:

Ground Lease Negotiations for Southtown Building 9
Ground Lease Amendment Negotiations for Manhattan Park

Any Other Committee Business That May be Brought Before the Committee.
Will update when more is learned about these matters.

Wednesday, May 22, 2019

Roosevelt Island Residents Gathered Last Saturday Night To Moonwatch, Stargaze And Search For International Space Station With 2 Very Large Telescopes Courtesy Of iDig2Learn And OB Astronomy


Excited Roosevelt Island residents, young and a bit older,


gathered on a brisk Saturday evening at the Riverwalk Commons to gaze at the moon, stars and even the International Space Station from two large telescopes


brought to the Riverwalk Commons courtesy of iDig2Learn founder Christina Delfico and OB Astronomy's Chris Vallo.
Christina Delfico, iDig2Learn’s founder who organized the event as part of the Celebrating Roosevelt Island’s Nature series reports over a hundred folks came out and definitely wants to invite Chris back. Ms Delfico adds:
Saturday night’s clear skies were all we needed for OBAstronomy’s visiting expert Chris Vallo to grab his high-powered telescope and set up on Roosevelt Island.


The night was cooler than expected but no one wanted to leave and with the telescope still on the hand truck crowds of curious residents of all ages were gathering wanting to look. Chris likes to say, patience and hope are key traits of budding astronomers and that was true as we waiting until 8:30 pm for the giant pink colored full moon to peak up

Image From Arsha Antony

over buildings in Long Island City.

Riverwalk Commons, the area between Fuji East restaurant and Duane Reade, provided great viewing grounds as old and new friends came out and patiently lined up twenty-five at a time behind each telescope for a glimpse of our Moon’s craters.


One very young viewer learning to talk uttered a few words as she squealed with delight saying, “Big, big, balloon,” and motioned her hands as if to hug the moon.


Friends we see on the sidewalk stopped and stayed for hours getting to know each other better.

As if the bright full moon weren’t enough, seeing Jupiter rising added to the excitement. One freelance casting agent said she had been at the home office all week and she just had to come out to see this. As she looked through the lens she noticed that the four moons of Jupiter were visible.

Luke a young resident savvy to all things space including the International Space Station’s flyover times and about 40 viewers shouted and pointed as it’s bright lights whizzed by making the arch between buildings in less than two minutes.

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

RIOC President Says Figment NYC June 1-2 Lighthouse Park Event A Test Case To See If Roosevelt Island Can Handle Large Crowd Events - PSD Hosting May 23 Town Hall Event To Discuss Safety Preparations For Figment, You're Invited To Attend And Share Concerns

Roosevelt Island is hosting the 2019 Figment NYC Participatory Art Project at Lighthouse Park on June 1-2.  The event is expected to draw large numbers of visitors to Roosevelt Island which is of great concern to residents who do not want a repeat of the Cherry Blossom Festival Transportation disaster with:

  • dangerously long lines at the Tram, Subway, Ferry, 
  • closure of the Roosevelt Island Bridge to traffic,
  • lack of bathrooms, food and water for the visitors.
Estimates of visitors for the Cherry Blossom Festival ranged from 35 - 40 thousand people overwhelming Roosevelt Island that day.

Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) President Susan Rosenthal reported during the May 9 Board Meeting that the Figment NYC event will be a test case to see if Roosevelt Island can handle large crowd events.

Ms Rosenthal said that the 2018 Figment NYC Festival at Governor's Island drew 12 thousand people but that they have no idea how many visitors may come to Roosevelt Island this year. Ms Rosenthal added that the Figment NYC Lighthouse Park event will be using tickets for entry. 



Following the Cherry Blossom Festival Transportation disaster, RIOC has been in discussions with NYC Emergency Management, NYPD, FDNY, MTA and Figment NYC organizers to develop safety procedures for the June 1-2 Lighthouse Park event.

On May 23, the RIOC Public Safety Department will host a community Town Hall Meeting to  discuss safety preparations for the June 1-2 Figment NYC Lighthouse Park event.

According to RIOC:
KNOW MORE, BE SAFE

COMMUNITY TOWN HALL DISCUSSION WITH PSD ON THE SAFETY AND PREPARATIONS FOR FIGMENT NY

THURSDAY, MAY 23rd at 6 PM

The Chapel of the Good Shepherd

543 Main Street ADA accessible

Invited Guests:

NYC Emergency Management (NYCEM), NYPD, Figment NYC, Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright, Council Member Ben Kallos

What: Figment NYC is a free participatory arts event that celebrates creativity by challenging artists and participants to find new ways to create, share, and dream.

When: Saturday, June 1st and Sunday, June 2nd

Where: Various Island locations, including Lighthouse Park, along the West Promenade, the Motorgate Atrium, and the lawn south of Rivercross.
Here's May 7 RIOC Operations Advisory Committee meeting discussion of plans



for Figments NYC event.

Also, click here if you are interested in volunteering to help at Roosevelt Island's Figment NYC participatory public art project.

Learn more about Figment NYC at their web site.

Happy Belated Birthday To Roosevelt Island Tram, 43 Years Old Last Friday, Started Service On May 17, 1976 - And No Jerry Seinfeld, It's Not An Amusement Park Ride

Roosevelt Island Historical Society (RIHS) President Judy Berdy reported last Friday that May 17 was the Roosevelt Island Tram's 43rd birthday having started service on May 17, 1976.

There was no Tram party marking the occasion, but there was a big celebration in 2016 for the Tram's 40th Birthday


with speeches,



cake


music and more festivities.


Roosevelt Island Tram Turns 40 from Michael Scotto on Vimeo.


At the 2016 Tram Birthday Ms Berdy talked about the history of the Tram:
... Way back in 1972, an architect of this soon to be community discovered that the MTA subway would not be completed in time to be ready for this new community. An alternate mode of transportation had to be developed.

The architect's name was Bill Chaffee, and apparently he was a ski enthusiast, who envisioned a gondola-style car connecting the two islands of Roosevelt and Manhattan.

Manhattan streets were surveyed to determine where to build a temporary tram station. East 72 St was a possibility, because it was wide and could accommodate a station in the middle of the road.

Luckily there was a vacant lot at East 59th Street, opposite the entrance to the Queensboro Bridge. This spot was the stage upon which the tram station would be built.

The tram, then called an aerial gondola, was ready in less than 3 years.

The history of the tram has been interesting; consider some of these highlights after it opened in 1976:

It was the site of many movies and TV shows
  • Night Hawks
  • Fear Factor
  • City Slickers
  • Turk 183 And, of course,
  • Spiderman !
In the 1980s, it seemed to run out of insurance and closed down for two weeks.

The first system was counterbalance, requiring both cabins to shut down simultaneously every week for maintenance.

In 2003, it finally accepted Metrocards.

Our new Poma system opened November 30th, 2010, on time.

While the tram was being re-built, the Roosevelt Island Historical Society’s Visitor Center kiosk was restored and our garden was planted to enhance the “neighborhood.”

The Tram is people, the professionals who daily climb the towers at 5 a.m. to check conditions, the cabin attendants who drive the cabins and deal with every kind of person, packed into the cabins, thankfully for just 4 minutes at a time.

The tram is Roosevelt Island. No matter who came with the message to cut or shorten service; that leader learned that our tram is sacred – and that person is gone.

The tram is here. It is curiously romantic, at all hours of the day and night. It is the site of marriage proposals, engagements and even weddings. One recent Sunday morning, 100 people cheered as their friends disembarked from the cabin, she wearing a new ring on her finger.

The tram brings us the world, dozens at a time. Since 2007, the Roosevelt Island Historical Society has welcomed thousands of people at the kiosk, from every state, country and continent. The tram is the attraction. Every week, Manhattanites tell us they are here out of curiosity. Some come into the kiosk, walk up Main Street, become enamored of our community and soon are our neighbors.

Many residents say the Roosevelt Island Historical Society’s Visitor Center kiosk is for tourists, which is partly true. Really, the visitor Center kiosk is for all of us.

Our staff complements the tram and makes every visitor welcome.

The history of Roosevelt Island emerges from the people who ride the tram and tell us their stories, their families, the who and why of a community.

The secret is long out. The tram is it.

Its loyal staff and riders make it part of our being.
Greg Paravati has been operating the Roosevelt Island Tram since it began service in 1976. He has watched generations of Roosevelt Island children grow up and even attended some of their weddings.

Mr. Paravati says the Tram is a wonderful way to travel. He tells us about it in this 2012 interview.



And Jerry Seinfeld jokes about the newly opened Tram



as an amusement park ride in 1977.

Happy Belated 43rd Birthday to the Roosevelt Island Tram!

Monday, May 20, 2019

RIOC Begins Phased Repairs To The Roosevelt Island Motorgate Garage Starting June 1 - Repair Concrete Surfaces, Install Slip Resistant Topping, Upgrade Drainage System, Waterproofing, Re-Striping, Install Electric Car Charging Stations & More

As reported May 7, the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) will soon start repairs to the Motorgate Garage.


 Today, RIOC announced that work on the Motogate Garage will begin June 1.

According to RIOC:
Motorgate Garage Improvements to Begin Week of June 3rd

As announced on April 30, 2019, a phased renovation for the Motorgate garage will be starting shortly. The improvements will address deficiencies in the space. The work will be phased to allow for the continued use of the garage as construction progresses.

What’s happening:
  • Repair concrete surfaces to remove cracked, spalled, and delaminated concrete.
  • Install slip resistant topping coating as needed.
  • Replace the existing expansion joint material.
  • Repair & upgrade the existing drainage system.
  • Apply a waterproofing system on the parking deck, ramps, walkways, and curbs.
  • Re-stripe the parking spaces and install new wayfinding signage.
  • Install electric car charging stations.
What to expect and when:

Effective June 1, 2019 and throughout construction of sections 3D, 4D, 5D, 6D, 7D & 8D, monthly rates for patrons with reserved parking spaces will be adjusted accordingly.

Beginning June 3, 2019, sections 3D, 4D, 5D, 6D, 7D & 8D in the south building will be closed.  No parking is allowed in these sections after midnight on June 2, 2019. Violators will be towed.

As a reminder, we expect phase 1 work to be completed in the fall of 2019. No work will occur during the winter months. Construction activities will resume in spring 2020. We anticipate completion of all construction activities in the fall of 2020.

What residents can do to help:
  • Your continued patience and cooperation is appreciated as we require residents to temporarily relocate their vehicles within the garage.
  • Please observe and comply with temporary modifications to both vehicular and pedestrian traffic patterns.
  • For your safety, please stay out of construction areas and other areas as posted.
Community advisories with detailed updates on the Motorgate garage improvements will be sent out as the project progresses. To receive alerts visit rioc.ny.gov and sign up for Island Community Advisories.
Here's the May 9 RIOC Operations Advisory Committee meeting discussion



of the Motorgate Garage repairs.

Roosevelt Island Picnic Tables And BBQ Grills In Octagon Park Now Open After DEP Water Tunnel Access Road Fencing Removed Last Friday After Many Months Delay And Closed For More Than A Year

Last Friday May 17, after many months and delays, the NYC Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Water Tunnel Access Road fence


surrounding the Octagon Park picnic tables and BBQ Grills was removed


and the area opened up


for use.

The next day, on a beautiful Saturday afternoon, the Octagon Picnic Tables


and BBQ grills


were being enjoyed.

There is currently a fence blocking access to the waterfront promenade adjacent to the Octagon Building


during the repair of the seawall in the area.

SPONSORED POST - You're Invited To Roosevelt Island Summer Outdoor Grilling Coming To The Cafe @Cornell Tech Every Wednesday 2-5 PM Starting May 22 - Come For The Tasty Meals Paired With The Perfect Beer And Great East River Waterfront Views

The Roosevelt Island Cafe @Cornell Tech will be welcoming summer with weekly outdoor grilling hours every Wednesday, starting May 22

According to the Cafe @Cornell Tech:


THE CAFE

HAPPY GRILLING HOUR

EVERY WEDNESDAY

FROM 2PM - 5PM

SUMMER IS COMING! COME CHECK OUT THE OUTDOOR GRILLING STATION MANNED BY THE CONSTELLATION CULINARY TEAM. CREATIVE & DELICIOUS MEALS PAIRED W/ THE PERFECT BEER!

HATCH GREEN CHILI CHEESEBURGERS AND MODELO ESPECIAL

CHILI CHEESEBURGER - $7

MODELO ESPECIAL - $5

BEER & BURGER - $10
Come enjoy Wednesday afternoon outdoor grilling and a beer, or two,
 

with the folks from Cafe @Cornell Tech Constellation Culinary Team on the spacious Roosevelt Island campus patio


and enjoy the gorgeous East River waterfront views.

Also, check out the weekly Cafe @Cornell Tech Monday -Friday menus.

UPDATE 5/23 - Here's the Outdoor Grill Menu for Wednesday May 29

Friday, May 17, 2019

Help Save A Life - Roosevelt Island RIRA & RISA Blood Drive Advanced Sign Up Saturday May 18, 25 & June 1 At Good Shepherd Plaza Farmers Market - Blood Donation On June 8 Roosevelt Island Day

You can help save a life by donating blood.


The Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) will be signing up volunteer donors at Good Shepherd Plaza next to the Saturday Farmers Market tomorrow and the next 3 Saturdays for the annual Roosevelt Island Day June 8 Blood Drive hosted by the Roosevelt Island Seniors Association (RISA).

According to this year's RIRA Roosevelt Island Blood Drive Committee Chair Janine Schaefer
RIRA Blood Drive

Sponsored by Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) and hosted by Roosevelt Island Seniors Association (RISA)

The Blood drive is a big part of Roosevelt Island Day and has been an annual event for years. Volunteers will be sitting at Farmer's Market every Saturday from May 18th until the day of the event June 8th, to help people to sign up to donate in person from 10am to 4pm at the Community Room Senior Center 546 Main Street.

RIRA donated 36 pints of blood positively affecting the lives of over 105 New Yorkers in June 2018. If each donor this year brings a colleague, a family member, a friend or foe. We can double these results.

WALK-INS WELCOME

All donors must provide identification and should eat and be well hydrated prior to blood donation. Appointments are appreciated, but walk-ins welcome.

There is also a link for making online appointments for donating blood during the June 8 Roosevelt Island Day.
Here's a report from 2018 Roosevelt Island blood drive including video explaining how to donate



by two of the RIRA volunteers, Frank Farance and Bafode Drame.

Please help if you can - Donate Blood
.

Must Be Heaven? Good News For Roosevelt Island Transportation This Weekend - F Train Service To And From Manhattan, Both Tram Cabins Working And East River Ferry Service For Fourth Weekend In A Row



Good news, for the fourth week in a row, Roosevelt Island residents will have weekend F Trains running to and from Manhattan, both Tram Cabins operating as well as the East River Astoria Route Ferry service.

The new NYC Ferry 2019 Ferry Summer Schedule starts Monday

as well as service to the Brooklyn Navy Yard on the Roosevelt Island Astoria route.

Thursday, May 16, 2019

Giant RI Monument Eyesore Returns To Roosevelt Island Tram Plaza After Repairs, Ugghhhhh - 3 Month Trial Period Over, Let's Get Rid Of It Or At Least Move To Middle Of Island For Tourist Instagram Photo Moment

Sadly, the Giant RI Monument Sign in front of the Roosevelt Island Tram Station that was removed for repairs several weeks ago returned yesterday


so that tourists can take pictures for, as described by Hudson Related and the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC), an "Instagram Moment".


The Giant RI Monument Eyesore was installed in October 2018 against the objections of many residents - though there are some residents who say they like it. As reported at the time:
... Hopefully, this Gigantic Eyesore, initiated by Roosevelt Island real estate developer Hudson Related, and opposed by the Roosevelt Island Residents Association, will be removed at the end of the 3 month trial period....
The  3 month trial period is over. It's up to the resident RIOC Board Members on the Real Estate Development Advisory Committee to decide if the Eyesore stays or goes. Make a decision.

Or at least try moving it to another Roosevelt Island location such as Blackwell Plaza


or Mediation Steps


where it does not obstruct sight views and might encourage tourists to visit the middle of the Island for their Instagram Photo.

2 Canoes Paddling East River Passing Roosevelt Island This Morning - Nice Way To Commute, If Roosevelt Island Had A Kayak/Boat Launch Dock

Spotted 2 canoes paddling on East River passing Roosevelt Island this morning.


Next time the F train subway and Tram go out of service, maybe we can all


hitch a canoe ride


across the East River.

Would be great if Roosevelt Island could get a kayak/canoe dock. In 2012, RIOC issued a Request For Proposals for a Kayak/Rowing facility but that did not work out well.

At least for now, we can kayak across the river in Queens at the Long Island City Community Boathouse at Hallets Cove at Vernon B'lvd and 31st Avenue and

Roosevelt Island Original Pioneers And Long Time Residents Planning September "The Rock" Reunion 2019 At Lighthouse Park - But Stumbling Block Is $7,500 Permit Fee Sought By RIOC, Planners Requesting Waiver Fee As In Previous Years

Roosevelt Island original pioneers and current long time Roosevelt Island residents are planning a reunion at Lighthouse Park for September 7.


150 - 200 people are expected to attend the event. But a problem has occurred obtaining a permit for the reunion from the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC).

I asked RIOC President Susan Rosenthal and RIOC Directors:
I am preparing a story about an upcoming reunion of current and former Roosevelt Island residents planned for this September at Lighthouse Park. 200 to 300 people are expected to attend.

I'm told that RIOC is seeking $7,500 as a permit fee from the group of current and former residents to use Lighthouse Park for their reunion. I'm also told there were previous similar reunions of this group and that no permit fee was required.

is this true?

Any statement from RIOC regarding why a permit fee is being charged and why in the amount of $7,500?
RIOC Community Affairs Supervisor Jessica Murray replied:
RIOC is conducting internal discussions to evaluate and decide upon fee structures for these types of activities. We will communicate with the applicant and the community as soon as possible. RIOC is committed to supporting community activities at all of our island amenities.
Long time Roosevelt Island resident Frank Farance shares this message he sent to RIOC President Susan Rosenthal:
... We'd like to have the permit fee waived, as RIOC has done in the past, including SPP and FFP (before it was developed), Lighthouse Park, Blackwell Park (a tree was planted Paula Spiaggia, in Memoriam, at that event), and the Meditation Steps.

One of our parks Capobianco Field is named after one of us originals Tony Capobianco, and his children are part of our reunions. Brian Dorfmann, whose chess table is in Al Lewis Park, was one of us "originals". Judy Berdy and David Kraut are of us "originals". The original movie "Fame" featured Island residents, as Performance Arts high school (along with other specialized schools) had many students on the Island (and PS/IS 217 graduates, too) -- and they return for Roosevelt Island reunions. There have been reunions in 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2015, and 2017.

We started planning this reunion in 2018, and Larry Slade contacted RIOC, and RIOC suggested Lighthouse Park for this kind of event (as it worked well in the past). Larry applied for the permit the first day it was possible to apply (February 1, 2019) for the event on September 7, 2019. The insurance was already purchased on February 1, we're about 200-300 people looking to have a picnic, as you can see in the following video.

Here's a video of one of the songs that us musicians played, "Born On The Bayou" (Credence Clearwater Revival - CCR, a 1960s band), and if you watch the first 2 minutes you can see the RIOC tents ... this was a pretty pleasant event.



Each reunion, we have a slideshow presentation from our community and history on the Island and, unfortunately-but-inevitably, a longer "Necrology" segment of the presentation. Here was the RI Blog's coverage in 2010:

I ask that you waive the fee so we can commit to planning for this site, and not have to look for another site. Thank you.
Here are some scenes,


courtesy of Mr. Farance,


of the 2010



reunion


at


Lighthouse Park.

And here's some scenes from the 2009 Reunion



and what it was like living on Roosevelt Island



in 1980.

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Get Your Tickets For People Of Platonovka: Actors At Work Based Upon Chekhov Play - Presented By Mihut Studio Founded By Local Roosevelt Island Resident At Main Street Theatre & Dance Alliiance This Weekend Friday May 17 to Sunday May 19


Roosevelt Island resident Mihaela Mihut is an actor, teacher and founder of the Mihut Studio,  This weekend, Friday May 17 - Sunday May 19 the Mihut Studio is presenting People of Platonovka: Actors At Work hosted by the Main Street Theatre & Dance Alliance (548 Main Street).

According to the Mihut Studio Facebook Page:
‘People of Platonovka; Actors at Work' is the first project that will be presented by an ensemble of actors from the Mihut Studio.The creative process began at the 'Mihut Studio' classes, held at Main Street Theatre & Dance Alliance on Roosevelt Island. The rehearsal process was and will be uncovered and explored in depth throughout the journey of various individuals guided by the Mihut Method Acting Technique.

For the first time the audience will be able to witness live character exploration within the guise of an official live performance in May. Performances will be held on the 17th, 18th and 19th of May 2019 at Main Street Theatre & Dance Alliance (MST&DA).

Cameras will follow talented, successful, yet perhaps lesser known, as well as 'known' artists from different backgrounds, showing their personal struggles, with life, family, facades, habits, showing their personal fears, doubts, hopes, dreams, as well as the intrinsic passion underneath that sustains them towards exploring the characters as part of the production. Ultimately it is a celebration of life in spite of all the obstacles an artist faces on and off stage -- in search of the characters. All will be revealed.

For the first time, the actors work is being shown in service of the story, with the awareness that the work is never complete. There is no 'final destination'. Within the process of our continual striving of Chekhov's characters -- we present to you this production.

The Mihut Method technique; an interpretation and adaptation of Strasberg’s Method Acting Technique, has assisted in the process of self-discovery for many artists of different backgrounds, to create memorable characters, both on stage and in film. The technique reflects and guides this process and replicates real, surprising, dynamic human behavior. Throughout this process the Mihut Method challenges a worldwide audience to recognize and connect with its own humanity.

'People of Platonovka; Actors at Work' is based on Chekhov’s ‘Platonov’, and is the first showing in which actors run into the obstacles of themselves as well as their characters in order to illuminate the work of the actor as well as the story. The element of ensemble, a defining feature of the work, is fully present in this play.

‘Mihut Studio Classes’ are for artists of varying levels and artistic backgrounds – amongst them are actors, writers, directors, dancers, along with other professionals -- sharing their journey with the common goal of reaching their highest human potential.
Performances are:
  • Friday May 17, 8 PM
  • Saturday May 18, 2 & 8 PM
  • Sunday May 19, 7 PM
Tickets:
General Admission - $20
Seniors & Students - $15
Click here to purchase tickets.

Prior to a People of Platonovka; Actors at Work rehearsal last week, Ms Mihut prepares and describes her acting training methods



and shares snippets



from the play's rehearsal.



Here's more info on the show and to purchase tickets.

Report Of Roosevelt Island Man Pepper Sprayed By Woman On Crowded Red Bus Last Night - RIOC Public Safety Department Seeking Witnesses


 Received the following advisory last night from the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC)
Please be advised that the Roosevelt Island Public Safety Department has received a report of an alleged assault with pepper spray which may have occurred on a RIOC Red Bus in front of the F Train Station at or around 9:45pm Tuesday May 14th 2019. Anyone with information in regards to this alleged assault is encouraged to contact the Roosevelt Island Public Safety Department by phone at 212-832-4545 or in person at 550 Main Street. All information provided will be handled with the utmost confidentiality.
This morning, RIOC Public Safety Department Chief Jack McManus added some more info. According to Chief McManus a man walked into the PSD office last evening saying that he was just pepper sprayed by a woman on the Red Bus that was full of other passengers. The man said he had a dispute with the woman on the subway that continued on to the Red Bus where she pepper sprayed him. 

The Bus Driver did not see anything. If you have any info on this incident, please contact the Roosevelt Island PSD. The NYPD 114th precinct was also informed.

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Upcoming Events At Roosevelt Island FDR Four Freedoms Park - May 18/19 Pop Up Library Celebrating Asian Pacific American Heritage, May 30 More Or Less I Am Musical Theater Performance Celebrating Walt Whitman's 200th Birthday & June 15 Ascend With Pride Afternoon Picnic, Coming Out Stories & Drag Queen Story Hour

You're invited to the following upcoming free public events at the Roosevelt Island FDR 4 Freedoms Park.

May 18 - 19 Pop Up Library celebrating Asian Pacific American Heritage.


May 30 Celebrating the 200th Anniversary of Walt Whitman's birth, Compagnia De' Colombari presents a free performance at the Park: More Or Less I Am (MOLIA), a music-theatre piece adapted from Whitman's first major work, Song of Myself.

June 15 Ascend with Pride: An Afternoon with Friends & Family at FDR Four Freedoms State Park

The FDR 4 Freedoms Park is open 6 days a week 9AM -7 PM and closed on Tuesdays.

Take a look at this interesting 2016 video of Harriet Pattison



discussing the design of the FDR 4 Freedoms Park.

Monday, May 13, 2019

Roosevelt Island Community Dog Advocate Asks RIOC To Keep Promise For Shaded Structure At South Dog Run During Board Meeting Public Session - RIOC Replies Temporary Shade Structure Will Be Installed Later This Month

Roosevelt Island Community Dog Advocate Scott Piro has been working with the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) to improve conditions at the Southtown Dog Run. Last January, Mr. Piro reported on successful efforts to find a solution for the muddy mess that becomes the South Dog Run following any rain.


Mr Piro also noted last January that RIOC would:
.... erect a shade structure for the southern run before summer, so the animals can be comfortable.
Image of South Dog Run Taken Last Saturday

But, Mr Piro reported during the May 9 RIOC Board of Directors Meeting Public Session being told the South Dog Run structure would not be built.  Mr. Piro urged RIOC to keep the promise made by former RIOC Director of Capital Planning Steve Noone to install a shade structure for the dogs using the South Run. Here's Mr. Piro speaking during the Public Session.



Today, I asked RIOC President Susan Rosenthal:
During the Roosevelt Island May 9 RIOC Board of Directors Meeting Public Session, Roosevelt Island Dog Advocate Scott Piro asked about a prior RIOC promise to erect a shaded structure over the South Dog Run.

Mr Piro said the promises was made by former RIOC Director Of Capital Projects Steve Noone and was planned to be in place before this summer.

Mr Piro added that he was recently informed that RIOC no longer intends to build the South Dog Run Shade Structure. Is that true?

Any statement from RIOC on building the South Dog Run Shade Structure?
Newly hired RIOC Assistant VP of Capital Planning and Projects Jonna Carmona-Graf replied:
Regarding your inquiry, RIOC has contracted for design services to relocate the South Dog Run into Blackwell Park. As such, a permanent shade structure will not be installed in the current dog run. We found a product that can be installed as a temporary means to provide shade for the dogs at the current location of the dog run this season. This should be installed as a pilot later this month.
Mr Piro shares this message he sent to RIOC Director David Kraut, President Susan Rosenthal and Ms Carmona-Graf earlier today:
David and Susan, thank you for hearing my presentation during the public session of last week's board meeting.

Jonna, please allow me to introduce myself: my name is Scott Piro, and I am the former secretary of the Roosevelt Island Residents Association. I'm also the unofficial representative for the Island's dog-owning community.

I hope to begin collaborating with you soon on "Petey's Dog Run" -- the name dog-owning residents are using for the Hudson Related-funded dog run coming in Q4 2019 to the redesigned Blackwell Park. My activism was central in moving the project ahead to 2019 from its original 2021 completion date. It was I, who initially scouted the locations for what was originally intended to be a temporary south dog run -- when Hudson Related's run was originally slated to be built inside the upcoming "Commons East."

Last week Mary Cunneen told me of RIOC's decision to scrap plans to erect a no-frills shade structure along one side of the temporary south run. Island residents are very unhappy with this decision, and my objection to it was the focus of my public session presentation last week. As I pointed out:

1) RIOC's Steve Noone promised the organization would build the shade structure -- despite the temporary south run's lifespan expected to last only until Q4 2019.

2) The dogs don't know or care that the south run is temporary. They only know how hot it gets in there starting at this time of year -- so hot, in fact, that they will squeeze themselves under the benches inside for any relief. There is no running water inside the temporary run, and of course the animals cannot efficiently regulate their body temperature, because they do not sweat.

3) When residents pointed out earlier this year that the south run had become an unusable mud pit for days after it rained -- because of downhill water runoff -- RIOC intially threw its hands up and said it could do nothing. Mary had discussed solutions with the grounds teams, and they concluded a cost-effective solution was impossible. But residents persisted and brainstormed -- and eventually we persuaded RIOC to build a no-frills, low wooden barrier around the dog run. The response has not only kept the water flow out of the run, it has also enhanced incomplete fencing that had been allowing smaller dogs to escape.

We call upon RIOC to honor its promise and erect a no-frills shade structure along one side (probably southern or eastern sides -- where resulting shadows would be longest and fall upon locations inside the dog run). Despite the southern dog run's temporary status, erecting a solution remains an imperative upon wihch RIOC should make good.

Mary and Jonna -- please keep me in the loop on the timing of implementing the solution you come up with. The dogs have caught a lucky break with all this cool weather. But it's going to get unbearable for them very soon.

Thanks everyone -- have a great week!
A permanent Southtown Dog run is planned to be built just south of 480 Main Street in Blackwell Park.