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Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Stacy Horn, Author Of Damnation Island, Poor, Sick, Mad & Criminal In 19th Century NY Discusses History Of Roosevelt Island At NYPL Mid Manhattan Branch June 6 - Register Now For Free Tickets

Damnation Island is the title of a new book by author Stacy Horn about the history of our home here on Roosevelt Island. You can tell by the book's title that the story is of a Roosevelt Island before luxury condos, Cornell Tech and tourists coming to visit.

Ms Horn will be discussing the Roosevelt Island of Damnation Island with NY Times columnist Gina Bellafante at the NY Public Library Mid Manhattan branch (475 Fifth Avenue) on June 6.

According to the NYPL:
Damnation Island: Stacy Horn with Gina Bellafante

Wed. Jun 6, 2018 at 6:30pm EDT

An author evokes the forgotten ghosts of Roosevelt Island, a place where prisoners were enlisted to care for the insane.

The narrow island in the East River once contained a lunatic asylum, two prisons, an almshouse, and a number of hospitals. Designed to be state-of-the-art, both humane and efficient, Blackwell’s Island quickly became, in the words of Charles Dickens, “a lounging, listless madhouse.” Using city records, newspaper articles, and archival reports Stacy Horn brings the stories of the inhabitants back to life, and highlights the work of the period’s officials, reformers, and journalists.


Registration does not guarantee admission. For free events, we generally overbook to ensure a full house. Priority will be given to those who have registered in advance, but registration does not guarantee admission. All registered seats are released shortly before start time, and seats may become available at that time. A stand by line will form thirty minutes before the program.

The Program Room opens at 6 PM.
To register.

Click here to buy your copy of Damnation Island or try your luck at winning a free copy of the book (thru May 31)

Would be great if Ms Horn gives a reading of Damnation Island right here on Roosevelt Island too!!!

UPDATE 8:45 PM - You can also purchase Damnation Island at the Roosevelt Island Historical Society (RIHS) Visitors Center Kiosk at the Tram Plaza on Roosevelt Island.

Learn more about the history of Roosevelt Island from RIHS President Judy Berdy during this March 2018 lecture

to the Historic Districts Council.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Outdoor Performance Of Sophocles' Ajax And Philoctetes Presented By Theater Of War In Honor Of Fleet Week Friday May 25 At Roosevelt Island FDR Four Freedoms Park - A Catalyst For Town Hall Discussion About Challenges Faced By Veterans, Families & Communities Impacted By War And Violence

In honor of Fleet Week NYC, Theater of War Productions will be presenting a dramatic reading of scenes from Sophocles' Ajax and Philoctetes on Friday, May 25 at Roosevelt Island's FDR Four Freedoms Park starting at 5:30 PM.

According to a Theater of War spokesperson::

A special outdoor performance of Theater of War for Fleet Week at Four Freedoms Park on Roosevelt Island.

The performance will feature Kathryn Erbe (Law & Order: SVU), Zach Grenier (The Good Wife), and Glenn Davis (24).

In attendance: uniformed service members from a local Marine unit and a National Guard unit, along with veterans from shelters and transitional housing throughout the city
Theater of War is a free, interactive performance of scenes from Sophocles' Ajax and Philoctetes, ancient Greek plays, as a catalyst for town hall discussions led by community panelists about the challenges faced by veterans, families, and communities impacted by war and violence. This groundbreaking project is designed to promote understanding, compassion, and positive action.



The NYC Department of Veterans’ Services and Department of Cultural Affairs named Bryan Doerries Artistic Director of Theater of War Productions, as the city’s Newest Public Artist in Residence (PAIR). Over the next two years. Theater of War Productions will bring theater projects and community conversations that address critical public health and social issues to all five boroughs. All events are free and will take place in more than 60 venues across New York City. The project will combine theater and public forums that engage both veterans and civilians in community-specific performances that foster health and healing through open discussion and exchange. For more information, please visit:...

Tickets to this free event at FDR Four Freedoms Park are available here.

Monday, May 21, 2018

You're Invited To Open Doors Reality Poetry Night Presented By Coler Hospital Residents Harmed By Gun Violence Tuesday May 22 At Roosevelt Island's Gallery RIVAA

Roosevelt Island's Gallery RIVAA and the Angelica Patient Assistance Program are hosting a night of Open Doors Reality Poetry presented by Coler Hospital residents on Tuesday, May 22 from 6 - 8 PM at Gallery RIVAA (527 Main Street). You're invited.

According to Open Doors Reality Poets:
On Tuesday, May 22nd, 2018, from 6 to 8 pm, OPEN DOORS Reality Poets – alongside World Slam Finalist Joel François – will offer a glimpse into their complex perspective through a night of spoken word, a video chronicling members’ lives “before and after the chair,” and visual art.

OPEN DOORS is an initiative of the Angelica Patient Assistance Program, which seeks to improve the lives of economically disadvantaged New Yorkers living in long-term care facilities.

OPEN DOORS is a pioneering effort to harness the creativity and leadership potential of a group of men harmed by gun violence to become positive forces in their communities and beyond. Members receive artistic guidance, professional training, and a platform for their voices.

Members live at NYC Health + Hospitals/Coler on Roosevelt Island. They share a common thread but are not limited to that bond.

On May 22nd, take the time to see how a mile is traveled in their wheels. But don't feel sorry for these slick talking storytellers; lend them your heart and ears but check your sorrow at the door.
Open Doors adds:
LeVar Lawrence, who as a kid went from drawing on paper to drawing on walls in project staircases. In August 2005, a bullet severed his spinal cord. “Now instead of drawing with my hands I take pictures and manipulate them with digital art software.”
LeVar Lawrence writes:
Only if he had raised his arm about an inch or two / I wouldn’t have to be telling my story to you / ... I can’t even teach my son how to play ball / Or pick up and run if he needs me at the drop of a call / Is this a punishment for all the wrong that I did? / Now I’ve been sentenced to this wheelchair doing a life-sentence bid

Image From LeVar Lawrence
Here are some readings from the 2017 Open Doors Project Angelica Poety Slam at Gallery RIVAA.

More info available on Angelica Patients Assistance Program and Open Doors Reality Poets.

Friday, May 18, 2018

Roosevelt Island Seniors Association (RISA) Board Nominations Open Thru Monday May 21

Nominations are open for Roosevelt Island Seniors Association (RISA) Board Members.

For more info, please email RISA.

Report From RIOC President Susan Rosenthal - 2018 Macy's July 4 Fireworks Celebration On East River, Meeting With Citibke On Coming To Roosevelt Island, Summer Youth Center Plans & More

During May 17 Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Board of Directors meeting, RIOC President Susan Rosenthal reported:

1- 2018 Macy's July 4 Fireworks will be on East River this year giving Roosevelt Island fantastic views of the celebration,

2- Meeting next week to discuss bringing Citibke docking stations to Roosevelt Island. Talks will include possible locations.

3- Says receiving wonderful reports of RIOC Youth Center doing well.

Future plans for Roosevelt Island Youth Center. Planning summer basketball league, gardening program and Saturday teen nights. Beacon Summer Camp.

RIOC Closing Youth Center during summer for renovations of building. 2nd floor of Sportspark to be used by older youth when Youth Center building is closed during summer.

4 - Here's the complete RIOC President's Report from Ms Rosenthal including info on June 16 Roosevelt Island Day, which RIOC will be producing by themselves for first time, Tram Platform Repair work, Motorgate painting and repair and more.

You're Invited To Chabad Of Roosevelt Island Shavuot Dairy & Ice Cream Celebration Of 10 Commandments Sunday May 20

The Chabad of Roosevelt Island invite you to The Ten Commandments & Shavuot Celebration 10 AM Sunday, May 20 at the Roosevelt Island Cultural Center ( 548 Main Street). According to the Chabad of Roosevelt Island, the Celebration features:

Dairy Lunch & Ice Cream Party. Reading of the Ten Commandments followed by a scrumptious Dairy Buffet. Bring your kids for an incredible program and ice cream bash.

To RSVP or more information please contact

More info available at Chabad Of Roosevelt Island web site.

Stay Up All Night - a Shavuot song.