Saturday, August 18, 2012

Bruce Springsteen and E Street Band Play Fenway Park In Boston - Fantastic Performances, Here's A Taste But No Help For The Red Sox

Bruce Springsteen & the E Street Band played Fenway Park in Boston this past week. Nothing more needs to be said other than this Yankee fan wished he was there. Here's some of what happened. Enjoy.

Opening with Take Me Out To The Ball Game and The Promised Land.

Later Tenth Avenue Freeze Out with a tribute to the Big Man Clarence Clemons.


Springsteen's Boston fans even got Dirty Water

and the Dropkick Murphy's American Land.

Holy Crap said one fan as Bruce greeted fans as he was leaving Fenway.

More video from Springsteen's Fenway Park concerts here.

Hope to see him in NYC soon.

Some Boston Red Sox fans are hoping that Springsteen's 2012 Fenway Concerts, like his 2003 concerts, are an omen of better days ahead for their team this season. According to Peter Gammons at MLB:

The last time Bruce Springsteen played Fenway Park was 2003. He opened with an homage to Boston music by playing the Remains' version of "Diddy Wah Diddy," and the highlight was his exorcism of the mythical curse at the wall during an unforgettable version of "Mary's Place." And, of course, a year later, the curse was broken, Boston won two World Series in four years, and all was right and good in Red Sox Nation.

Bruce returns to Fenway on Tuesday, with loyalists begging that his tribute to The Olde Towne Team be "The Rising." There have been no pennants since 2007, no postseason series won since the American League Division Series in '08, and the Red Sox haven't even made the playoffs since '09....
But I doubt it.

Friday, August 17, 2012

No Queens Bound Roosevelt Island F Train Service From Manhattan This Weekend

According to the MTA Weekender:
F Jamaica-bound trains run via the M from 47-50 Sts to Roosevelt Av

Weekend, 10 PM Fri to 5 AM Mon, Aug 17 - 20

Trains run express from Queens Plaza to Roosevelt Av.

No Jamaica-bound service at 57 St, Lexington Av/63 St, Roosevelt Island and 21 St-Queensbridge.
No  word from Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) whether both Tram Cabins will be operating this weekend during the F Train subway service disruption.

Update On Upcoming Roosevelt Island Tram Weekday Off Peak Hours Service Disruptions - Renovations Being Done To Passenger Waiting Area and Red Bus Service Provided To Manhattan When Tram Not In Service

An update to yesterday's post that:
The Tram will be Out of Service for Station Renovations

During Off-Peak Hours (10:00 AM – 3:00 PM Daily)

Monday, August 20th- Friday, August, 24th

& Monday, August 27th- Friday, August 31st
I sent the following inquiry to Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC)  President Leslie Torres:
What is the reason for the Tram being out of service for two weeks at daytime off peak hours during Tram Station renovations described in RIOC advisory below?

My understanding was that the Tram cabins running independently of each other would allow at least one tram cabin to operate during any Tram Station renovations.

Also, there was no mention of this Tram service outage during the July 24 Operations Committee meeting discussion on the Tram status. Has there been a new development involving the Tram since then requiring a service outage during Station renovation?

Thank you.
RIOC's Press Spokesperson replied:
The renovations will be to the passenger waiting area. Our engineers determined that the safest and most efficient way to do the renovations will involve shutting down the entire system. Safety is our number-one priority.

The work was originally planned for September, but since we'll be shutting down the entire system during the renovation periods, we decided to move up the time-table. This will allow us to minimize the disruption by finishing the work before the school year starts and while many residents are away on summer vacation.

We are going to provide bus service during the 10 am to 3 pm window when the tram stations are closed. We realize this is a burden on the community and apologize for the inconvenience, however, renovating the stations is needed.
Today, received this announcement from RIOC:

The Tram will be Out of Service for Station Renovations

During Off-Peak Hours
(10:00 AM – 3:00 PM Daily)

Monday, August 20th- Friday, August, 24th
& Monday, August 27th- Friday, August 31st

RIOC will provide RED BUS service to Manhattan during this time

Departure times are as follows:

425 Main St / Riverwalk Commons
546 Main St
Northtown / Capobianco
2nd Ave & 58th Street (SE Corner)

The first trip will depart Roosevelt Island at 10:30 a.m.
The last trip will depart Manhattan at 2:00 p.m.

The MTA’s F-Train and the Q-102 bus will be in operation during this time. 
For more information about MTA service please visit or call 511.


Roosevelt Island Operating Corp Advisories Group
As reported in this previous post:
... Plans for the renovation on the Roosevelt Island side include:
  • Replacement of the railings at the Tram boarding platform
  • The addition of a see-through roof
  • An enclosure for the Tram boarding area, which will be heated in the winter Scrapping, sanding, and painting of the railings
  • Installing a new no-slip floor and patching where necessary
  • Power washing the entire Plaza
The Manhattan side of the Plaza will get the same renovations as above with the following additions:
  • A new Courtesy booth
  • New security gates
  • New tread toppings for the stairs
  • New textured warning strips at the bottom of the stairs to help the visually impaired...

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Roosevelt Island Tram Out Of Service From Monday August 20 - Friday August 25 and Monday August 27 - Friday August 31 During Daytime Off Peak Hours For Station Renovations

Received the following advisory from the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC):
Please be advised:

The Tram will be Out of Service for Station Renovations

During Off-Peak Hours (10:00 AM – 3:00 PM Daily)

Monday, August 20th- Friday, August, 24th

& Monday, August 27th- Friday, August 31st

The MTA’s F-Train and the Q-102 bus will be in operation during this time. Please be sure to make alternate arrangements.

For more information about MTA service please visit or call 511.
During the July 24 RIOC Operations Committee meeting (full audio webcast of meeting here), Vice President of Operations Fernando Martinez updated the Directors on the Tram Station Rehab and Modernization project. No mention was made during this meeting of the upcoming daytime off peak Tram outage.

Mr. Martinez did discuss his climb to the top of the Tram Towers and the Directors asked Mr. Martinez about a recent weekend Tram overcrowding due to only one Tram cabin operating when there was no F train subway service to Manhattan from Roosevelt Island. Mr. Martinez was not aware of the daylong outage of one Tram Cabin caused by a problem with a Tower Gear.

RIOC Director David Kraut suggested that the overcrowding at the Tram when F Train Subway service for Roosevelt Island is disrupted may not be such a big deal because the people left waiting as the Tram leaves can get on the next Tram.

Here's the July 24 Operations Committee meeting discussion on the Tram.

More on the Tram Station renovations from previous post.

UPDATE 8/17 - RIOC describes renovations being done to Tram Station.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Australian Band Tame Impala Visit Roosevelt Island and Talk About Their New Album At Pier NYC Over Margaritas - On To Rio

After a ride on the Roosevelt Island Gondooley (as the band says), Australian rockers Tame Impala talk about their music. Here's their conversation at Roosevelt Island's Pier NYC

and August 7 performance at the Music Hall in Williamburg.

More on Tame Impala from their web site and if you happen to be in Rio De Janeiro tomorrow, that's where  the band will be playing.

Roosevelt Island Food Trucks Ready For Dinner Tonight - Eddie Pizza and Hibachi Heaven Unless Weather Gets Bad

Unless the weather gets bad tonight, the Trucks will be here.

Roosevelt Island Boat Prow Dock Eyesore Getting A Long Awaited Restoration and Facelift - Graffiti To Be Removed, Eroded Corten Steel Base To Be Repaired But Solution Still Needed To Prevent Future Graffiti

Reported way back in April 2008:
While walking towards the Octagon Park this past weekend, I passed by the West Promenade dock shaped like the prow of a boat and was disgusted by the amount of graffiti plastered all over it. The graffiti strewn dock, both inside and out, is quite an eyesore and has been like that for years. It should be cleaned up....
At the time, Steve Shane was President of the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC). Mr. Shane responded to the post:
The prow has always been an attractive grafitti spot, has been cleaned many times. Gets done on summer list.
and in response to a suggestion to hire local kids to clean up the graffiti on the boat prow, a philosophical Mr. Shane replied:
We do hire local kids.
Clean up of prow only creates tabula rasa. We will do it, again.
(Yes, there was a time when the RIOC President actually engaged with the Roosevelt Island community through the media.)

It's now August of 2012 and the Roosevelt Island Boat Prow Dock is still an eyesore plastered with graffiti.

However, during the July 30 Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Board of Directors meeting (full webcast is here), RIOC Vice President of Operations Fernando Martinez reported that RIOC will begin a Boat Prow Restoration project to remove the graffiti from the prow and to repair eroded Corten Steel damage to the base of the Prow caused by the East River salt washing up against the prow. Mr. Martinez added that RIOC has not found any type of material that can be used to prevent graffiti from being placed on the prow so RIOC will have to be vigilant and remove the tags as soon as they are placed on the prow. Here's the presentation by Mr. Martinez:

and July 24 RIOC Operations Committee meeting discussion of the topic (audio webcast of full meeting is here)

There is also an interesting exchange between RIOC Director David Kraut and Roosevelt Island Historical Society (RIHS) President Judy Berdy regarding when the public is allowed to participate in RIOC committee meetings. Mr. Kraut explains to Ms. Berdy that public participation is solely at the discretion of RIOC Board members.

I recently took a walk around the Boat Prow Dock. Join me

and look forward to a time when the area is not filled with graffiti.

It is not hard to believe that a Roosevelt Island public space formerly dirty with pigeon poop and graffiti could be cleaned up and revitalized. Just look at what happened to the Subway Pier area that is currently an outdoor restaurant for this summer, Pier NYC, and how that was cleaned up by the Riverwalk Bar & Grill owners.

Sustaining Your Heritage Blog has more information on removing graffiti from steel structures similar to Roosevelt Island's Boat Prow Dock:
... One of the major challenges we face in the conservation of public art is dealing with human impact on the artwork. And of course, graffiti epitomises the negative impact that comes from some members of our society.

Graffiti removal is almost always problematic. Often, the marker (paint or pen) penetrates the pores or surface roughness of the materials used for the sculpture, and cannot be easily removed. At other times, the process required to remove the graffiti causes damage to the substrate....
This NY Times FYI column from 2000 provides some more information on Roosevelt Island's protruding rusty old ship's prow:
It's a performance stage and observation platform, built over an old boat landing in 1997 and designed to look . . . well, like a ship's prow. It projects about 50 feet out into the West Channel, and consists of a flat, unadorned concrete wedge clad with rusty plates of steel. Two small slots near the tip -- presumably for imaginary anchor chains -- are the only real nautical embellishment, though a few heavy mooring posts have been placed nearby.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

Combine A Child's Wonder With A Cool Camera and What Do You Get? An Update On Roosevelt Island Digital Photography Workshop With Olya and Brian

Reported last April on a Roosevelt Island Digital Photography Workshop being formed by residents Olya Turicihin and Brian Dorfman with Island Kids. Francine Lange updates us on their progress. From Ms. Lange:

Budding photographers train their lenses on rocky textures. (Credit: Brian Dorfman)

What do you get when you combine a child’s wonder with a cool orange camera? An amazing collection of photos by 4- to 10-year-olds on Roosevelt Island.

Island Kids recently added photography classes to their summer camp and the kids, teachers and parents are loving it.

Olya Turcihin, one of the teaching duo, says: “I’ve wanted to do this for a long time.” An avid photographer and blogger (see her work here), her idea of the perfect job is working with children and photography. Olya’s co-teacher, Brian Dorfman (see his work here), also a longtime photographer, says he loves sharing “the unbridled love of photography” with kids.

Class starts with a review of safety rules, including securing camera straps on wrists, keeping grubby fingers off lens and sensors and asking permission before taking someone’s photo.

Photo hounds then hunt for the perfect subject. Cameras click away at feet, faces, shadows, squirrels, squiggles, birds, rocks, shapes, textures, clouds, skies, puddles and poodles.

The kids return to class and select several of their favorite shots to take home. One child shyly explains why he’s chosen an image of a fence with a z-shaped support. “Because my name starts with the letter ‘z’,” says Zachary.

“Z” is for Zachary, 5 ½ years old. (Credit: Zachary)

Both teachers have been amazed at the level of growth in photo taking and the expansion of the kids’ creativity.

Silhouette a point of view. (Credit: Karen)

They’ve watched how quickly they want to manipulate a photo, even at such a young age. “This is an issue of sophistication of visual thinking,” says Brian. Adds Olya: “As they say, we are all born artists.”

Moody infrastructure.(Credit: Yunari)

Nikki Leopold, director of Island Kids, has received positive feedback from parents. “It’s like the highlight of the camp,” she says. “It’s incredible. You see the improvement” week to week.

Road to somewhere.(Credit: Olivia)

To see more of the children’s photos, visit Olya and Brian’s Facebook page, Bounce Light Enterprises.

To sign up your child for the Island Kids Summer Camp, which also includes sports, swimming, drama and art sessions, e-mail or call 646-752-3839. (The camp runs through August 24 and you can sign up by the week. Cost is $285 per week for children ages 4-6 and $270 for children ages 7-10.)

Monday, August 13, 2012

Roosevelt Island Resident/The ReThink Group Founder Denise Shull Explains Market Mind Games and Fear Of Future Regret To CNBC's Squawk Box - Is Next Stop Colbert And Jon Stewart?

 Image of Denise Shull's New Book Market Games In Barnes & Nobles 5th Avenue Store Window

Reported previously:
... on Roosevelt Island resident and founder of The ReThink Group Denise Shull's new book Market Mind Games: A Radical New Psychology of Investing, Trading and Risk. Ms. Shull gave a reading from her book and answered question from a well attended gathering  of Roosevelt Islanders at Gallery RIVAA on Sunday February 12....
Ms. Shull appeared on CNBC's Squawk Box last Thursday to discuss her book. She describes:
... The Fear Of Future Regret...
and counsels investors that:
... they are trading other people...
Here's the Squawk Box discussion with Ms. Shull and

the ReThink Group web site. Also, Ms Shull gave a reading and discussed her book at Gallery RIVAA last February. You can buy Ms. Shull's Market Mind Games at Amazon or Barnes & Noble.

Roosevelt Island Toastmasters Meeting Tonight 7:30 PM - Come Improve Your Public Speaking Skills and Meet New Friends

The Roosevelt Island Toastmasters meet every second and fourth Monday of the month and are meeting tonight. Information on the time and place for tonight's meeting is here.

Received the following message from the Roosevelt Island Toastmasters:
All are welcome.

Toastmasters is a place where you develop and grow - both personally and professionally. You join a community of learners, and in Toastmasters meetings we learn by doing. Whether you're an executive or a stay-at-home parent, a college student or a retiree, you will improve yourself; building skills to express yourself in a variety of situations. You'll open up a world of new possibilities: giving better work presentations; leading meetings - and participating in them - more confidently; speaking more smoothly off the cuff; even handling one-on-one interactions with family, friends and colleagues more positively. The Roosevelt Island Club consists of 20 active members, being small gives you the flexibility to work on your communication skills with a friendly lot. http://4121.toa​stmastersclubs.​org/
More information on Roosevelt Island Toastmasters available at previous posts.

Roosevelt Island Explorers Children's Garden Grows In Southtown - Parents, Children And Educators Working Together To Form An Outdoor Roosevelt Island Learning Environment

Image Of Roosevelt Island 455 Main Street Children's Garden

A Roosevelt Island Children's Garden is growing in Southtown on the lawn behind 455 Main Street. The garden initiative was organized by local resident Leila Vujosevic and the Roosevelt Island Explorers (RIEX).

According to Ms. Vujocevic:
Roosevelt Island Explorers is a group of experienced educators and professionals exploring the possibilities for a rich early childhood program on Roosevelt Island. Our work is grounded in deep respect for children’s competencies and a strong belief in their ability to figure out the world around them, our fascination with Roosevelt Island as a distinctive learning environment, and our inspiration by the Reggio Emilia experience, internationally recognized as a model of excellence in early childhood education .

This summer, we have initiated and sponsored a Children’s Garden at 455 Main Street.

Together with children,

their families,

and with generous support from the building management and staff, we have created an outdoor classroom,

which has become a joyful place for explorations and strengthening our close community. This is only a metaphor for what we believe could become a deep and bonding learning experience for young children, their families and the larger Roosevelt Island community.

We hope to engage other groups and individuals who care about young children in a conversation about possibilities for an early childhood education experience unique for our magnificent Island.

More information on the RIEX Children's Garden, educational philosophy and other information is available at their web site here.