Friday, January 10, 2020

Assault At Roosevelt Island FDR Four Freedoms Park - Skateboarder Altercation With Park Employee Leads To Employee Being Thrown To Ground, Injuring Ankle And Back Says RIOC PSD Report

The Roosevelt Island Public Safety Department Incident report listed:

01/08/20 – 1603 – Assault – 10 Main Street – PSD/EMS/NYPD responded – Referred to NYPD.
I asked the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) for more details.

According to RIOC Public Information Officer Terrence McCauley:
Three males skateboarding in Four Freedoms State Park were approached by one of the park employees. One of the three skateboarders had a verbal altercation with the employee, which led to the employee being thrown to ground. The employee injured his ankle and hurt his back.

No weapons were used. The suspect fled the scene with other males. The search for subject yielded negative results.

Skateboarding is not allowed at the FDR Four Freedoms Park.

2 Girl Scouts From Roosevelt Island Chosen To Represent Girl Scout USA Movement On Millions Of Girl Scout Cookie Box Packaging, Congrats To Persya Perez & Maya Rodney, Well Done - Cookies Arrive In February But You Can Pre Order Now

Who would have thought that not only 1 but 2 Roosevelt Island Girl Scouts were chosen to represent the Girl Scout USA movement on millions of Girl Scout Cookie package boxes. As reported earlier this week, Maya Rodney from Roosevelt Island Girl Scout Troop 3002 is featured on the 2020 Girl Scout Cookie Boxes.

Shortly after publishing the story I learned from a reader:

And another Islander is on the back of Trefoils!!! Persya Perez!! Yitza Martinez’s daughter!!

Goooo Island Girl Scouts!!!

Proud Roosevelt Island Mom Yitza Martinez reports:
My daughter Persya Perez from Troop 3001

is also featured on one of the cookie boxes, the Trefoils to be exact. The chances of getting on a box are pretty slim because they choose girls from all over the United States. The fact that 2 Girl Scouts from Roosevelt Island were chosen is awesome. Congratulations to Maya!

Persya has been on the top 5 cookie seller list for 3 years now. Hoping to one year make it to #1 spot. Competition is pretty fierce, especially here on Roosevelt Island. Either way she is having a good time taking orders to help raise money for the troop to go camping at the end of the Girl Scout year. It's something the girls look forward to. Cookie sales for delivery by girl scout will end on the 13th. If anyone would still like to order and not mind the shipping fee they can still do so after that date. To support Persya on her journey you can use

Here's a message my daughter Persya wrote:
Thank you so much @girlscouts @girlscoutsnyc for giving me this opportunity, and also thank you @kr8zyfam05 @edfromdaroc for helping me these past 7 years since day 1 of being a Girl Scout💖

And lastly, thank you to all of my loyal customers and supporters because without your crave for the best cookies, I wouldn’t have the amount of confidence I have, the business skills, and all the money management skills that I’ve learned in the past years, which is all apart of Girl Scouts as well!#girls#younglady#supportme#cookieseason#girlscout
I asked Roosevelt Island Girl Scout Troop 3001 Leader Aiesha Eleusizov
How does being featured on the Boxes work - it seems unusual to have 2 girls from same neighborhood featured.

Does every neighborhood get a local girl featured on the box?
Ms. Aiesha Eleusizov explains:
First, you should know that the Girl Scout cookie boxes RARELY change - usually they go about a decade with the same boxes. So, it's a pretty big deal that we have new boxes this year at all. And, these are the cookies boxes that a million Girl Scouts will sell all over the US for probably the next ten years or so (I think there are usually about 200 million boxes sold nationwide per year, so their photos will be everywhere!).

As far as I know, there were two ways that girls were chosen to be on the new boxes. A small group of girls (I believe 6) were chosen through the 2018 Girl Scouts of the USA Cookie Pro contest (I don't think either one of the RI girls were chosen through this route). Those girls submitted applications and talked about their Girl Scout entrepreneurial/ cookie sale experiences. The second way was through a Girl Scouts of the USA casting call in 2018 that was sent to girls by invitation only - I believe they invited high sellers and/or girls that are very involved in Girl Scouting. We had a few girls in our troop that went to the casting call - and Persya was picked for a full photo shoot (she went through several rounds of interviews before she was chosen - it was not an easy process!). I don't know how Maya was selected

In addition, as an FYI, we have a number of RI Girl Scouts that are on Girl Scout web sites and promotional materials nation-wide! Because we have such wonderful diversity in our troops on Roosevelt Island, the RI troops were invited to two professional cookie asset photo shoots in May/June 2017. These professional photos are now used nation-wide. It's been great fun to see the faces of our girls (and the RI leaders as well) on promotional materials and websites all over!! Frequently, I get Girl Scout e-mails or see social media posts outside of our local area featuring our local RI Girl Scouts. We have a pretty special community - and one that has been very generous in supporting our Girl Scout cookies!!

On a side note, you should know that donated cookies make their way back to Roosevelt Island as well. Each year we have hundreds of boxes donated to Coler Hospital (for the residents as well as the very hard working staff) and we donate boxes to the Carter Burden Senior Center (for events and holidays (each senior went home with cookies on Thanksgiving) and to RIDA. We also give donated cookies to a group of homebound seniors identified by DASH on their birthday (along with a homemade card and flowers and a cupcake donated by Wholesome Factory). So, if any Islanders want to purchase cookies to be donated, we welcome that as well!
Congrats to Roosevelt Island Girl Scouts Maya Rodney and Persya Perez.

No Roosevelt Island F Train Service To Manhattan This Weekend - Two Weekends In A Row Of Roosevelt Island Subway Service Disruptions

There is no Roosevelt Island F Train service to Manhattan this weekend.

According to the MTA:
SIGNAL MODERNIZATION Jan 10 - 13, Fri 9:45 PM to Mon 5 AM Brooklyn-bound F trains run via the E from Roosevelt Av, Queens to 5 Av/53 St, Manhattan

Trains resume regular service at 47-50 Sts.

No Brooklyn-bound F service at 21 St-Queensbridge, Roosevelt Island, Lexington Av/63 St and 57 St.
That's second consecutive weekend of Roosevelt Island F Train service disruption after 4 months of normal weekend service.

Both Roosevelt Island Tram cabins are operating and here's the NYC Ferry Roosevelt Island Astoria Route Winter Schedule. 

During June 13 Roosevelt Island Town Hall Meeting organized by Council Member Ben Kallos, MTA representative Markus Book spoke about Roosevelt Island F Train subway service. Watch the full MTA Roosevelt Island presentation below.

Thursday, January 9, 2020

Roosevelt Island Hudson Related Riverwalk 8 Affordable Housing Building Web Site Now Live With Info - Housing Lottery For Units Likely To Launch In March

I asked Hudson Related Roosevelt Island Southtown Riverwalk developer David Kramer:

... any update on Riverwalk affordable housing building 8? A web site for the building that will show unit types, area medium income ranges and projected rents. was supposed to be available last summer?
Image of Riverwalk Building 8 Construction Site

A Hudson Related spokesperson replied:
... The Riverwalk 8 (AKA Riverwalk Park) site launched and can be found here
Also, am told that:
Regarding the launch of the lottery, that has not been scheduled, but will likely happen in March
through NYC Housing Connect.

As previously reported, Riverwalk Park is:
... a 21-story building comprised of approximately 240,000 square feet of floor area and 341 rental units, will be constructed. Building 8 will be financed under the Department of Housing Preservation and Development of the City of New York and the New York City Housing Development Corporation’s M2 Mixed Middle Income Program. RIOC seeks to preserve affordable housing, consistent with its mission and statutory purpose.

Under the Building 8 Ground Lease
  • (i) 3% of the 341 units will be reserved as Homeless Units, 
  • (ii) 3% of the units will be reserved for very low-income families with household incomes of 40% of AMI, 
  • (iii) 14% of the units will be reserved for families with household incomes of 50% of AMI, 
  • (iv) 10% of the units will be reserved for families with household incomes of 80% of AMI, 
  • (v) 20% of the units will be reserved for families with household incomes of 100% of AMI, and
  •  (vi) 50% of the units will be reserved for families with household incomes of 130% of AMI. 
This breakdown provides an even greater degree of affordability than was set forth in the Fifth Amendment.
NYC 2019 Area Medium Income (AMI) for a single person is $74,700. For a family of 2, AMI is $85,400 and for a family of 4, AMI is $106,700. 
The Fifth Amendment referenced above provided for the units to be available for families with incomes of  40% - 165% AMI.

... The building contains 81 studios, 158 one-bedrooms, 51 two-bedrooms, and 50 three-bedrooms. The application process will launch in 2020 through Housing Connect – New York City’s housing lottery system. Depending on family and apartment size, income-level based rents will vary from a minimum of $505 a month for a studio to $3,431 for a three-bedroom....
Click here to learn more and sign up to receive information from Hudson Related about Riverwalk Park.

Stay tuned for more info.

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Roosevelt Island Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney Speaks On House Floor Today Opposing War In Middle East And Conflict With Iran - What Happens Next?

Roosevelt Island's Congresswoman (NY-12) Carolyn Maloney spoke on the floor of the House Of Representatives today opposing war in the Middle East and conflict with Iran.

This morning, President Trump had this to say about Iran

and the AP fact checked his statement.

Reactions include:

When Will New NY Public Library Roosevelt Island Branch Location Finally Open? Not As Planned For December 2019, Delayed Until Spring 2020 Says NYPL Spokesperson

When will the New York Public Library (NYPL) open it's new Roosevelt Island branch location on the first floor of 504 Main Street

replacing the current overcrowded and dilapidated branch?

Plans for the new Roosevelt Island NYPL branch library were first announced way back in July 2012 but construction did not start until October 2018. At that time, we were told to expect substantial completion of the new library by December 2019. As we know, that has not happened.

In October 2019, Main Street Retail Master Leaseholder Hudson Related representative Alex Kaplan reported:
... the NY Public Library will open in the Summer of 2020, later than the December 2019 that had been scheduled....
Earlier this week, I asked the NYPL:
... Completion of construction and opening of the new Roosevelt Island Library was scheduled for December 2019/January 2020.

When do you expect the library to open?
A NYPL spokesperson answered:
There was a slight delay, but we expect to move in to the new branch in the spring. When we've confirmed the exact date for the opening, we'll be sure to let you know (and will be sending an email to patrons to notify them as well!)
Below is NYPL January 2016 presentation on the new Roosevelt Island branch library

Roosevelt Island Library - FINAL Presentation 1/2016

and video of the presentation.

Roosevelt Island Girl Scout Maya Rodney Chosen To Represent Girl Scout Movement On Millions Of 2020 Girl Scout Cookie Box Packaging Reports Proud Mom - Cookies Arrive In February But You Can Pre Order Now

Proud Roosevelt Island Mom Joan Rodney reports:

Just wanted to share and pass along to you that Roosevelt Island's very own has been chosen to be featured on MILLIONS of Girl Scout cookie boxes nationwide. Maya (our 9 year old daughter) is part of Troop 3002 on Roosevelt Island.

Girl Scouts USA Chief Executive Officer Syliva Acevedo congratulated Maya

and wrote
Dear Maya,

Congratulations on being chosen to represent your Girl Scout sisters and the entire Girl Scout Movement on the new Girl Scout Cookie packaging! Our famous cookie packages have always featured girls like you being true G.I.R.L.s (Go-Getters, Innovators,  Risk takers and Leaders) as you dive into outdoor adventures, take action in your community, explore your passions and make lifelong connections...

According to Girl Scouts USA:
... The Girl Scout Cookie Program® teaches girls about entrepreneurship as they have fun learning essential skills like money management, public speaking, and decision making, which set them up for a lifetime of success. Nine in ten Girl Scouts say the cookie program has built their entrepreneurship skills and their interest in pursuing entrepreneurship as a career path—so every cookie purchase is an investment in the world-changing business leaders of tomorrow. What’s more, each and every purchase stays local to power amazing experiences and leadership opportunities for girls in communities across the United States....
Ms. Rodney adds:
Maya & her younger sister, Madison, are taking cookie orders now for anyone interested!

Dear Family and Friends,

Happy New Year! We're selling Girl Scout Cookies again!

The money we raise from cookie sales this year will go to the ​Ronald McDonald House​ (which provides help for sick children and their families), and to ​St. Jude's Hospital ​(where they treat children who have cancer and other illnesses).

Any amount you purchase is greatly appreciated!

If you do not want to buy cookies, you can still support us by making a $1 or $5 donation - every dollar helps!

Thank you for your support! We are so grateful!


Maya & Madison

You can pre-order your cookies now and we will arrange for delivery when they arrive in mid-February. To order cookies, email our mommy, Joan, at ​​
You can also make a donation or place your order directly on-line by visiting our cookie website links:



As previously reported:
Roosevelt Island is fortunate to have several well run Girl Scout troops for a variety of ages including the:
  • Daisies K & 1st grade
  • Brownies 2nd & 3rd grade
  • Juniors 4th & 5th grade
  • Cadettes 6th to 8th grade
  • Seniors 9th & 10th grade
  • Ambassadors 11th & 12th grade
Here's more info on Roosevelt Island Girl Scouts past activities.

Tuesday, January 7, 2020

Congrats To Roosevelt Island Home Town Boy Matt Rhule Named Head Coach Of NFL Carolina Panthers Today - His Dad Says It Was Good For Him Growing Up On RI Seeing Different Types Of People

Naming a new head coach of the NFL's Carolina Panthers would not usually be a a topic of interest for Roosevelt Island except today - when Matt Rhule, who grew up on Roosevelt Island in the 1980's, was the person hired to be the coach.

According to this October 7, 2017 Waco Tribune-Herald article:
... With his father taking different jobs around the country as a Nazarene minister, Matt was exposed to a lot different cultures and socioeconomic groups.

The most dramatic move for Denny and Gloria Rhule and children Matt and Dana came in 1980 when they moved from Kansas City to New York City. Denny felt a calling to minister to the homeless in the Times Square area of Manhattan.

“It was good for our kids because they saw different people,” Denny Rhule said. “They saw different races and socioeconomic groups. The church had a big outreach to the homeless and they were part of that. I tried to include them as much as we could. I think it benefited them in the long run being there 11 years.”...
and January 27 CBS Sports adds:
... Matt got an education growing up on Roosevelt Island, a melting pot in the middle of the East River. He mingled with both kids from subsidized housing and the offspring of diplomats.... 

According to
... NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport reported Rhule's contract is for seven years and is worth a whopping $62 million. The deal also includes a $2.5 million signing bonus in addition to incentives for team goals such as winning seasons, playoff wins and Super Bowls. A large sum to lure Rhule from the college ranks to Carolina....
A homecoming to the NY Giants would have been a great story but congratulations to Matt Rhule for being first Roosevelt Islander NFL Head Coach.

Monday, January 6, 2020

Transportation For Roosevelt Island Disabled Just Got A Whole Lot Better - RIDA Announces Purchase Of New Bus To Take Members to Events, Cultural Activities, Shopping & More

The Roosevelt Island Disabled Association (RIDA) has a new bus to transport it's members on trips for shopping, cultural activities and events of all kinds on Roosevelt Island and elsewhere in the NYC area.

RIDA President Wendy Hersh reported last Saturday:
Exciting day today. Long time coming and a lot of hard work...but I am picking up the newer RIDA bus today...newer, cleaner and safe!!!
and later on Saturday:
So HURRAY...we finally got the bus!! We are on our way back to the Island.

Ms Hersh adds today:
The bus is a 2014 with very, very low mileage. It has 10 permanent seats, 3 flip seats and can accommodate up to 3 wheelchairs.

We researched many bus seller companies and this one company on Long Island really worked with me to give us what we needed. And I would be amiss if I did not give a shout out to RIOC (Susan Rosenthal, Cy Opperman and Joe Marino) for all of their assistance in checking out the buses for me and assisting me with finding the most appropriate and cost effective bus.

The old bus had become unsafe and trips and services were severely limited over the holidays. We will continue to use the bus to transport our members for shopping and cultural trips as well as to events. We will also use it to transport disabled members of our community during Island events.

Although our members were a little disappointed over the holidays as our trips were limited due to the poor condition of our old bus, we were still able to provide them with some holiday events on our Island. I promised our members a new bus and as one member said yesterday upon seeing the new bus,"you really kept your promise ". It meant alot to me to be able to make this happen.

Part of our 2019-20 RIOC Public Purpose Funds grant was awarded for this. We also had to redistribute some of our funds that were for other activities in order to be able to afford this since we did not get any other outside assistance. It was a great price for what it is but still more than we expected. We had reached out to some politicians but received no assistance. It may be a little tough getting through until our next grant, but we will continue to provide our members with services.
A RIDA member thanked Ms Hersh for all her hard work to get the new bus.
Thank you Wendy for all you have done to get the van. It's. A beauty and well deserved . May God bless every trip we take.
Here's Ms Hersh describing the programs and services offered by RIDA, including the need for a new bus, to the Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) Puble Purpose Funds Committee last May seeking recommendation for the RIOC Public Purpose Fund grant.

RIDA received $33 Thousand in 2019 RIOC Public Purpose Funds.

Happy Travels RIDA!!!!!