Friday, February 24, 2017

Roosevelt Island Songwriting Workshop By Singer/Songwriter And Local Resident Emily Mure Starting Sunday February 26 At Main Street Theater & Dance Alliance

Roosevelt Island resident, singer and songwriter Emily Mure is teaching a songwriting workshop at the Main Street Theater & Dance Alliance (MST&DA) beginning Sunday February 26. Ms. Mure tweets

The MST&DA adds:
Songwriting Workshop

Are you interested in songwriting? Want to learn how to write your own song or further develop songwriting skills?

This workshop is perfect for all levels of songwriters! You are welcome to bring an instrument but it is not required.

Sunday from 6-7:30pm for four weeks only - February 26th through March 19th.

Cost for all four weeks is $100.

For more information or to join, email

Here's Emily Mure showing the making of her album Odyssey

and more videos at her web site.

Also, Ms Mure's 2013 Roosevelt Ice Cream Concert

at Main Street Sweets.

Good News, Roosevelt Island F Train Service To And From Manhattan But Runs On Q Line In Manhattan This Weekend

According to the MTA, there will be Roosevelt Island F Train service

to and from Manhattan this weekend but there will be F line service changes in Manhattan and Brooklyn.

Image From MTA

The MTA reports::
No F service at 57 St, 47-50 Sts, 42 St-Bryant Pk, 23 St, 14 St, W 4 St, B'way-Lafayette St, 2 Av, Delancey St/Essex St, East Broadway, and York St.

F service operates between Jamaica-179 St and Lexington Av-63 St, then via the Q to/from Atlantic Av-Barclays Ctr (skipping DeKalb Av, days and evenings), and via the D to/from Stillwell Av.

• Trains run express in Manhattan all weekend.

SPONSORED POST - Roosevelt Island Gristedes Supermarket Bonus Savings Card Diamond Rewards Loyalty Program February 24 To March 9 - Get Exclusive Offers And Earn Points On Hundreds Of Items To Be Redeemed On Next Order

The Roosevelt Island Gristedes Supermarket

Diamond Rewards customer loyalty program items for February 24 - March 9 are now available .

Examples of featured items purchased from February 24 - March 9 that earn you big points include
  • Cheerios Cereal earn 50 points,
  • Paesana Pasta Sauce earn 50 points,
  • Oscar Meyer Franks earn 50 points,
  • Kraft Shredded Cheese earn 25 points and
  • many more shown in flyer below.

According to Gristedes:
Start Earning Points Today

Join the Diamond Rewards loyalty program today! Get exclusive offers and earn points on hundreds of items! Get $5 Coupons for every 500 points earned, redeemable on next order.

Look for the Diamond Rewards label on the shelf or the product
If you have a Gristedes Bonus Savings Card and provided your email address, you are automatically enrolled in the Diamond Loyalty Program.

You can sign up for a Gristedes Bonus Savings Card online or in store - just make sure you give your email address and whether you are a new or existing Bonus Savings Club member, in order to be eligible for the Diamond Rewards Loyalty program.

Also, Roosevelt Island Gristedes Supermarket invites you to check out their:
  • Groceries, 
  • Organic & Gourmet, 
  • Snacks
  • Meat, 
  • Fresh Produce, 
  • Seafood, 
  • Frozen, 
  • Deli &;
  • Fresh Bakery
Department Offerings for March 3 - March 9

and these Lenten Savings valid February 24 -March 9.

Gristedes representative Bob Capano invites Roosevelt Island residents to check out their various product departments for all of your shopping needs.

Don't forget the 10% Roosevelt Island Seniors Discount on Tuesday and Wednesday 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, February 23, 2017

Roosevelt Island Youth Program Offering Free SAT Preparatory Classes Starting Monday February 27 - Register Now, Space Limited

The Roosevelt Island Youth Program is offering free SAT Preparatory Classes starting Monday February 27. According to RIYP:

Roosevelt Island Youth Program offer's free SAT prep classes. Starting Monday February 27, 6:30pm - 8:00pm, at 645 Main street, PS/IS 217 School.

Register here.

Email:  for more information

Roosevelt Island Girl Scouts Roaring Lions Robotics Design Team Takes Third Place In NYC FIRST Lego League Tournament - Congrats!!!!!!

Roosevelt Island Junior Girl Scout Troop 3001 Leader Aiesha Eleusizov shares these photos and reports:

On Saturday February 11, Roosevelt Island's very own Girl Scout Troop 3001's team "Roaring Lions of Roosevelt Island"

competed in the NYC FIRST Lego League Qualifying Tournament in Marine Park, Brooklyn! The Roaring Lions of Roosevelt Island took 3rd Place in Robot Design and advanced to Semi-Finals!

The Roaring Lions of Roosevelt Island team is comprised of seven fourth and fifth grade girls in Junior Girl Scout Troop 3001 - Alua Zhanuzakova, Charlotte Peterson, Jayla Davis, Lily Kalb, Louisa Ersenkal, Louise Wang, and Victoria Gorain. The volunteer coach for the team is Girl Scout leader Heather Smith.

Island Kids generously sponsored the team by providing a much needed meeting and practice location for the team. Since September, the team has met for two hours each week plus many, many weekend and holiday practices.

The FIRST Lego League competition has three parts: Robot Games, Core Values of teamwork and cooperation, and a real world Project to improve the interactions between animals and humans.Teams must perform well across all 3 categories to advance to the semi-finals.

The girls excelled in programming the robot and each girl on the team programmed their own mission, They competed against teams from all over the city - collecting points when they successfully complete missions in 2 minutes 30 seconds. The girls worked together to research and come up with a solution to the issue of having guinea pigs in small apartments by designing guinea pig multi-story "high rise" cages to give more space for the guinea pig without having the cage take up too much space. The girls created a fun skit and made up a song to explain their project to judges. The girls demonstrated their awesome teamwork and "gracious professionalism" with their positive and supportive attitude towards each other while completing teamwork challenges in front of the judges.

The Roaring Lions of Roosevelt Island Girl Scouts

made us proud with their well-planned robot missions and creative research projects! Congratulations, girls!
Great job and Congratulations Roaring Lions Junior Girl Scouts Of Roosevelt Island!!!!

The Roosevelt Island Roaring Lions were also congratulated for their efforts by the Girl Scouts of Greater New York.

Here's more on the First Lego League.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

When The Roosevelt Island F Train Subway Escalators Don't Work, It's A Very Long Climb Up - 159 Steps

The Roosevelt Island Twitterverse reports:

A post shared by Jan Strasky (@johnzik) on

According to this Roosevelt Island 360 2009 post:
Apparently a runner from the Prospect Park Track Club who likes climbing subway stairs has counted the Roosevelt Island subway station's steps and placed us third in total stairs among comparable stations:

>209 steps - Lex/63rd Street

>175 steps - Smith Street

>159 steps - Roosevelt Island...
Roosevelt Island 360 was an excellent local blog - it is missed.

RIOC Board Approves $100 Thousand For Roosevelt Island Youth Program To Continue Operating Youth Center For Six Months - Withdrawn RIOC Youth Center RFP Scoresheet Results Revealed

The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Board of Directors approved an expenditure of $100 Thousand to the Roosevelt Island Youth Program (RIYP) during the February 16 RIOC Board meeting. According to this RIOC staff memo in support of the RIYP funding:

TO: Board of Directors / Susan G. Rosenthal

FROM: Sean Singh, Grant Writer

DATE: February 13, 2017

RE: Authorization to Extend Grant Funds to the Roosevelt Island Youth Program, Inc.

RIOC seeks authorization to extend grant funds for the first six (6) months of FY 2018 to the Roosevelt Island Youth Program, Inc. (“RIYP”), the current operator of the Roosevelt Island Youth Center. RIOC intends to release a competitive Request for Proposals (“RFP”) for a Youth Center Operator before the expiration of this period.

This period will also be used to schedule and commence general rehabilitation of the Youth Center, to address leaks on the roof and terrace, ADA-compliant restrooms, remodel the kitchen facilities, mechanical/electrical/plumbing upgrades, and finishes — resulting in a more safe and attractive space for the Island’s youth.

The grant will require detailed information regarding programing, attendance, staffing as well as a six month budget of all funds necessary to operate the Center.

Based on the foregoing, RIOC requests the Board’s approval to disburse $100,000 in grant funds and enter into a six month grant agreement with the RIYP in order to ensure the continued operations of the Youth Center.
As previously reported, RIOC issued a September 21, 2016 Roosevelt Islands Youth Center Operator RFP (RFP)

which attracted three bidders - the current operator RIYP,  Island Kids and the Roosevelt Island Center of Community Developemt (RICCD). RIOC's RFP scoring of the applicants resulted in a tie between 2 bidders. RIOC did not reveal the names of the tied bidders to the public or the bidders themselves.

On January 23, RIOC announced that the two tied applicants would be further evaluated to determine the winning RFP bid but subsequently withdrew the RFP on January 27.  On February 1, RIOC President Susan Rosenthal reported the reason for withdrawing the Youth Center RFP was:
... members of the Roosevelt Island community have submitted numerous communications to RIOC generally questioning the legitimacy of the review that resulted in a tie. Some communications included disparaging remarks about bidders. All such communications, attempting to influence the RIOC review committee while the RFP is pending, are inappropriate and are prohibited by State Finance Law. These communications, among other things, caused RIOC to withdraw the RFP on January 27, 2017.....
Also, the terms of the RFP (page 17) state that RIOC may withdraw the RFP at any time at it's sole discretion.

To date, the Youth Center RFP applicants did not know who the tied bidders were or the RFP scoring results.

Until now.

The RIYP and Island Kids were tied for first place with 241 points. RICCD scored 230 points.

Scoring criteria was based upon  4 separate categories:
  • Experience (up to 30 Points),
  • Management & Operation Plan (up to 30 Points),
  • Financial Capability (up to 20 Points) and
  • Interview (up to 20 Points)

for a total of 100 possible points.

The scoring was done separately by the 3 RIOC staff members listed below and added together for total results.

Reviewer Shelton Haynes (Vice President Operations)

Roosevelt Island Youth Program
  • Experience - 29 Points
  • Management & Operation Plan - 26 points
  • Financial Capability - 14 Points
  • Interview - 13 Points
  • Sub Total Total - 82 Points
Roosevelt Island Center Of Community Development (RICCD)
  • Experience - 28 points
  • Management & Operation Plan -  28 points
  • Financial Capability - 6 points
  • Interview -  14 points
  • Sub Total - 76 points
Island Kids
  • Experience - 29 points
  • Management & Operations Plan - 29 points
  • Financial Capability - 15 Points
  • Interview - 16 Points
  • Sub Total - 89 Points
Kevin Brown (Deputy Director Public Safety Department)

Roosevelt Island Youth Program
  • Experience - 26 Points
  • Management & Operations Plan - 24 Points
  • Financial Capability - 14 Points
  • Interview - 16 Points
  • Sub Total - 80 Points
Roosevelt Island Center For Community Development (RICCD)
  • Experience - 24 Points
  • Management & Operations Plan - 26 Points
  • Financial Capability - 6 Points
  • Interview - 17 Points
  • Sub Total - 73 Points
Island Kids
  • Experience - 22 Points
  • Management & Operations Plan - 22 Points
  • Financial Capability - 15 Points
  • Interview - 15 - Points
  • Sub Total - 74 Points
Lada Stasko (Assistant General Counsel)

Roosevelt Island Youth Program
  • Experience - 28 Points
  • Management & Operations Plan -  26 Points
  • Financial Capability - 14 Points
  • Interview - 11 Points
  • Sub Total - 79 Points
Roosevelt Island Center For Community Development
  • Experience - 26 Points
  • Management & Operations Plan - 29 Points
  • Financial Capability - 6 Points
  • Interview - 20 Points
  • Sub Total - 81 Points
Island Kids
  • Experience - 27 Points
  • Management & Operations Plan - 20 - Points
  • Financial Capability - 15
  • Interview - 16
  • Sub Total - 78 Points
Here is the RIOC Youth Center RFP Scoresheet.

and February 16 RIOC Board meeting discussion

approving $100 Thousand 6 month expenditure to RIYP. RIOC Director Michael Shinozak was the sole vote not to approve the RIYP funding.

Application Deadline For NYC Free Universal Pre Kindergarten Seats Is February 24 - Still Time To Apply To Roosevelt Island's PS 217 & Roosevelt Island Day Nursery

Roosevelt Island PS/IS 217 PTA representative Erin Olavesen reminds
... parents of children born in 2013 have until February 24th to apply for free Universal Pre Kindergarten (UPK). Click here for more information.

I had a pretty large group of parents tour our Roosevelt Island PS 217 Pre-kindergarten last week, but because of winter break this week we won't have any other tours before the application deadline. We anticipate having 2 UPK classes this fall with 18 seats each. If parents have any questions about the UPK program at 217 they are more than welcome to email me at

PS 217 will host a few more tours in the spring once Gifted & Talented Class (G&T) scores have been released. These tours are geared towards families of prospective Kindergarten G&T students but all are welcome to attend.

We'll host an orientation for new pre-k and kindergarten families in June. Families will get more information when registering. Dates will also be posted to our PTA's website:

I don't want anyone to miss out on FREE prekindergarten right here in our neighborhood. I feel very lucky to have had my son in the UPK program at 217 last year. It was a great introduction to school for him.
Roosevelt Island UPK seats are also available at the Roosevelt Island Day Nursery. More info on Roosevelt Island UPK at this previous post and tips for selecting a kindergarten here.

UPDATE 2/24 The NYC Pre K application deadline has been extended to March 3.
Also, the Roosevelt Island Day Nursery adds:
RIDN has three UPK classes and the only on site extended day option (3-6pm coverage).

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Roosevelt Island Jobs Available At FDR Four Freedoms Park - Resource Manager For Fundraising/ Revenue Generating & Part Time Seasonal Park Rangers

Are you looking for a Roosevelt Island job?

If yes, consider these.

The FDR Four Freedoms Park

Image From Google Maps

is seeking a Resource Development Manager for its fundraising and revenue generating efforts:
Four Freedoms Park Conservancy seeks a creative and energetic Manager, Resource Development to strategically contribute to its fundraising and revenue generating efforts.

By working independently and in partnership with the CEO and Board of Directors, the Manager, Resource Development will support the achievement of revenue goals of over $2.5 million annually. The Manager will collaborate with the CEO to engage donors from all sectors (individuals, corporations, and foundations), build fundraising capacity and drive increased revenue...
Click here for more information and to apply.

There are also positions available for part time seasonal Park Rangers at the FDR Park:
Under the supervision of the Director of Park Operations and Facilities, Four Freedoms Park Rangers are responsible for welcoming, and engaging with, visitors to the FDR Four Freedoms Park; maintaining the Park; providing information about all aspects of the Park to the public; assuring the safety and well-being of the public; enforcing all Park rules and regulations; and opening and closing Park facilities. This job description will be periodically updated to reflect the Park’s needs....
Click here for more information and to apply.

Good luck

Monday, February 20, 2017

You're Invited To Roosevelt Island Seniors Association Black History Month Celebration Tuesday, February 21 - Music, Dance, Art, Poems, Speakers, History Trivia & Refreshments Too

Roosevelt Island Seniors Association (RISA) President Barbara Parker reports:

RISA's 14th Annual Black History Month

Join us as RISA celebrates their annual Black History Month Event on Tuesday, February 21st from 6:30pm to 8:30pm Senior Center 546 Main Street

"A Century of African American Life, History, Culture and Diversity"

Spoken Word, Presentations, Dance Performance, African Drumming, Songs, Art, Poems, Guest Speakers, History Trivia and more....

Refreshments will be served. For more information and to confirm your attendance contact Barbara Parker at 917-951-4137 or email

We all look forward to seeing everyone enjoy the various Island organization Black History Month celebrations and the colorful diversity of all the cultures, history and heritage that represent Roosevelt Island.

Deadline For Roosevelt Island Non Profits To Apply For NYC 2018 Expense Funding Grants From Council Member Ben Kallos Is February 21- Capital Infrastructure Grant Deadline March 24

If you know of a Roosevelt Island non profit corporation seeking additional funds, let them know that the deadline to apply for NYC 2018 Expense Funding grants from Council Member Ben Kallos is Tuesday February 21.

According to the February 2017 newsletter from Council Member Kallos:
... City Council Funding for Local Non-Profits Due February 21

Each year private non-profit corporations that serve thousands of residents of Council District 5 can apply for grants of $5,000 to $20,000 from my City Council office to supplement essential services in the neighborhood. You can review past budget results, resources funded through this process and learn more about the application at

The deadline this year for application is February 21. Learn more by contacting our Budget Director Sushant Harite at 212-860-1950 or, or visit
Mr. Kallos adds:
This money is here for the community and I want as many local non-profits taking advantage of the opportunity. My main concern is that we are maximizing the return on services for every dollar my office spends.

My office holds a very open application process, anyone interested in seeing where past allocations have gone can see them at We encourage any non-profit to apply.
The deadline for non profits to apply for Capital Funds that support infrastructure needs is Friday March 24.

Click here for application info.

Sunday, February 19, 2017

You're Invited To Roosevelt Island Celebration Of Black History Month Monday February 20 - Music, Poetry, Dance, Tribute To Martin Luther King & President Obama Plus Much More

Roosevelt Island Senior Center Carter Burden Program Outreach Director Hallie Shapiro reports:

We are CLOSED for all regular programming this Monday (2/20) for President’s Day, but be sure to come to the Black History Month Celebration between 1-4pm here at the Senior Center. Open to the community! There will be music, poetry readings, African dance performance, special tributes to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and President Barack Obama, and more! The party will be MCed by Public Safety’s Deputy Director, Kevin Brown.

Please join us! Light refreshments will be served.
Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) Child, Youth & Education Ad Hoc Committee Co-Chairs Adib Mansour and Anne Heskel add about same event:
It is with pleasure that RIRA’s Children, Youth and Education Ed Hoc Committee invites you to attend RIRA’s Black History Month Celebration with Anyah, Tia, and our young ambassador Lola De Luka.

The two leadership participants will read a private essay, a poem by Maya Angelou, and will perform an African Dance. Guest speakers include Deputy Director Kevin Brown (Public Safety Department), Dolores Green, and Mary Coleman.

The event will take place on Monday February 20th, between 1 and 4PM and the Seniors Center (546 Main Street). Snacks and beverages will be served as well as goody bags presented by Lola.