Saturday, May 16, 2020

Roosevelt Island Residents Line Up Yesterday To Receive Free Coronavirus Face Coverings From NYC Council Member Ben Kallos

Roosevelt Island was left out of Mayor Bill de Blasio's NYC neighborhood Coronavirus Face Covering distribution locations. Fortunately, our NYC Council Member Ben Kallos was able to schedule Face Covering distribution here yesterday afternoon from 4-6 PM outside of the Foodtown Supermarket.

Several hundred Roosevelt Island residents lined up at about 4 PM to receive reusable and disposable Coronavirus Face Covering from Mr Kallos.

Council Member Kallos arrived with approximately 360 reusable and and 280 disposable Face Coverings shortly after 4 PM

to a long line stretching from the entrance to Foodtown Supermarket all the way down the block almost to the north end of the Motograte Garage with social distancing space of 6 feet being maintained.

The distribution was a bit chaotic initially but quickly got  organized with the assistance of Roosevelt Island Public Safety Department (PSD) Deputy Chief Anthony Amoroso and other PSD Officers.

Two separate lines were formed for those with (250 RSVP's) and without reservations and within 10-15 minutes, both lines were moving smoothly and people received their Face Coverings from Mr Kallos and other volunteers.

I spoke with Mr Kallos yesterday. He talked about the Face Covering distribution, food distribution at PS?IS 217 and Senior Center and urged residents to contact him by phone (212 860 1950), email or Twitter if you need any assistance.

He also reported trying to get NYC to have a face covering distribution location on Roosevelt Island.

Friday, May 15, 2020

Watch Roosevelt Island Coler Open Doors Reality Poets Perform Saturday May 16 At Krip Hop Nation's Covid 19 Artistic Flow Livestream Virtual Benefit For People With Disabilities - Poets Show Us What It's Like In Roosevelt Island Nursing Home During Coronavirus Pandemic

The Open Doors Reality Poets at Roosevelt Island Coler Nursing Facility will perform tomorrow, May 16 at:

Krip Hop Nation's Covid-19 Artistic Flow Livestream Benefit

Krip-Hop Nation, Disability Justice Culture Club & the Longmore Institute on Disability Present:

Krip-Hop Nation’s Covid19 Virtual Benefit

Featuring disabled Hip-Hop Artists, DJs, Poets and Visual Artists from around the world

This virtual concert will raise funds for people with disabilities in New York and Detroit. Come for the cypher, stay for the dance party. This concert is Krip-Hop's first international virtual event.

Open Doors Poet and Coler resident Vincent Pierce reports on conditions at the facility during the Coronavirus Pandemic:

Frustration is at an all time high amongst Coler’s nursing home residents during this coronavirus pandemic. Me, especially. I am a thirty-four-year-old quadriplegic black man. I am also a father, music producer, youth educator and a gun violence survivor. They say everyone has a voice but who can we really express our concerns to if someone in a higher power always denies the accusations.

In response to what Coler’s administration and Health + Hospitals’ CEO is saying, I say: No, we’re not ok. No, we’re not being protected the way we should be. For more than a month, I’ve been quarantined on a unit with residents who’ve tested positive, and only now, after weeks of leaving the infected in bedrooms with the non-infected, are they starting to separate us. But it doesn’t matter because the people who have the virus are still permitted to walk around the dayroom without masks and to use the same ice machine and microwave as everybody else.

There is a shortage of PPE and the higher power denies it. Why is that? Their job is to make sure that not only residents in the facility are protected but also the nurses and nurses aides that are caring for us, as well. Cross contamination is the main way a virus can spread from one resident to another. Why are nurses having to take care of a Covid patient then turn around and with the same gown on take care of a non-Covid patient? This is totally against NYS Health Department regulations. Again, the higher power denies this is going on. How will you really know if you’re in an office all day and never go on the units?

No communication between administration and residents at all, it’s like no one cares for our well being or how we feel.

Now we share space with Roosevelt Island Medical Center (RIMC), a temporary hospital that they set up inside Coler. At first, it was supposed to house patients with non-Covid health conditions in order to free up beds in the city’s acute hospitals for Covid patients. That decision changed on a dime, and of the 140 patients transferred to Coler nursing home, 104 of them have Covid. When asked they say RIMC is in a separate empty wing and on unused parts of the Coler campus that have been abandoned for more than a decade, but that’s not true at all. They’re one floor above me. It is very possible that germs can travel through vents or linger in elevators....
Click here for the full article by Vincent Price.

Take a listen to the poetry of  Open Doors Jay Molina

FDNY Marine Unit Fire Boat Put On Water Cannon Show In East River Yesterday Next To Roosevelt Island & Upper East Side To Show Thanks And Appreciation For Health Care And Other Essential Workers

FDNY Marine Unit Fire Boat put on a show of water cannons spraying in the East River yesterday across from the Weill Cornell NY Presbyterian Upper East Side Hospital and Roosevelt Island's Coler and Roosevelt Medical Center showing appreciation and thanks to the health care and other essential workers

Roosevelt Island F Train Service To And From Manhattan This Weekend, But No Subway Service At All From 1 To 5 AM Each Day So Trains Can Be Disinfected- Wear Mask On Tram, Red Bus & All Public Transportation, Stay Home Unless You're Providing An Essential Service Or An Emergency During Coronavirus Pandemic

According to the MTA, there will be Roosevelt Island F Train service to and from Manhattan this weekend. E Train service too.

The Roosevelt Island Operating  Corp (RIOC) adds:

Sponsored Post - Check Out Roosevelt Island Foodtown Supermarket May 15-21 Product Offerings, Specials & Sales Items - Online Shopping, Delivery Options, Digital Coupons & Social Media Facebook And Instagram Too

The Roosevelt Island Foodtown Supermarket

invites you to check out their May 15 - May 21 Weekly Flyer for  Product Offerings, Specials & Sales items.

Click here to visit the Roosevelt Island Foodtown Supermarket web site for online shopping, delivery options, digital coupons, weekly flyer and more.

Follow Roosevelt Island Foodtown Supermarket on Facebook

Thursday, May 14, 2020

RIDA President Wendy Hersh Thanks C&C Management Roosevelt Landings Staff And Evangel Church Food Pantry For Delivering Food To Roosevelt Island Elderly, Disabled And Homebound Neighbors

Reported earlier this month on a group of Roosevelt Island Heroes:

Volunteers, led by Roosevelt Island Disabled Association (RIDA) President Wendy Hersh, together with the Long Island City based Evangel Church Food Pantry and the NYC Emergency Management Department (NYCEM) Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) members are delivering free meals to Roosevelt Island elderly and homebound residents during the Coronavirus Pandemic...
RIDA President Wendy Hersh updates us on the volunteers helping to feed our Roosevelt Island neighbors which includes the staff at Roosevelt Landings C&C Management:
During a week of appreciation, it is only fitting to shout out Doryne Isley , Chuck Abdul and the maintenance staff at C & C Management. In the midst of their day of working with a diminished staff, they are always there to pickup the meals,, unload the trucks

and help us deliver food to our neighbors and residents in need during this pandemic

Always willing to help with a smile on their face.

Love u guys!! We are so appreciative of all you delivering 3 meals a day...

The Super's name is Chuck, not Frank.

Sponsored Post - Roosevelt Island Farmers Market Reopens At Good Shepherd Plaza Saturday May 16, Support Your Local Farmers, Eat Healthy & Get Your Potted Herbs! - Keep Your Social Distance Too

The Roosevelt Island Saturday Farmers Market is returning to Good Shepherd Plaza

on May 16 with open hours from 6 AM to 3 PM. Senior Citizens and disabled people will have exclusive access to the Farmers Market from 7 AM to 8 AM.

The Roosevelt Island Farmers Market features a wide variety of healthy and delicious tasting fruits, vegetables and much more.

Israel Wengerd of Wengerd Farms adds:
Support your Local Farmers, Eat Healthy! We will have potted herbs Do fresh Basil
Social Distancing practices will be enforced by Roosevelt Island Public Safety Department and Market Staff. Face Coverings are required to enter the Farmers Market and gloves will be given out before entering.

The Farmers Market accepts credit and EBT cards for payment too.

Wednesday, May 13, 2020

NYC Mayor Bill deBlasio Doubling Open Streets For Pedestrians To Get Exercise While Practicing Social Distancing, RIOC Keeping Roosevelt Island McManus & Firefighters Field Closed And Surrounded By Yellow Tape, Says They Are Working On A Safety Plan

Closed Roosevelt Island McManus Field Surrounded By Yellow Tape From Tapan Parikh

According to Mayor de Blasio today:
Now that warmer weather has arrived, New Yorkers will need more options to enjoy the outdoors at a safe, social distance,...
Earlier today, the Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) Daily Update reported:
Ballfields and Playgrounds Remain Closed Until Further Notice

Although some state facilities around New York will begin opening over the coming days, we will continue to keep our ballfields and playgrounds closed in order to enforce social distancing practices regarding team sport activities. We are working on a safety plan to reopen some facilities. We will keep you informed of our progress in the coming days....
I asked RIOC President Susan Rosenthal and the RIOC Board Directors about the ballfields remaining closed:
Does this mean that McManus and Firefighters Field will re-open for non team sports activities as long as individual maintain Social Distancing?

As you may know, Mayor de Blasio is opening NYC street for pedestrians to walk around outdoors. On Roosevelt Island, our park spaces and ball fields are the equivalent of NYC Open Streets. When will RIOC open Firefighters and McManus Field for social distancing use by the public?

FYI - here's story on subject from earlier this week.

Any comment from RIOC on when McManus and Firefighters Field will re-open and if not, why not?
RIOC Public Information Officer Terrence McCauley replied:
We are following the New York City and New York State Parks Departments directives regarding the opening of ballfields and playgrounds. We will keep the community informed of when our facilities will be re-opened to the public.
I followed up:

Free Coronavirus Face Coverings Available At Roosevelt Island Foodtown Supermarket Friday May 15 Reports NYC Council Member Ben Kallos - Show Respect, Wear A Mask, Says NY State Governor Andrew Cuomo

Roosevelt Island's NYC Council Member Ben Kallos announced that free face coverings will be distributed at the Roosevelt Island Foodtown Supermarket (688 Main Street) Friday May 15 from 4-5 PM. Supplies are limited, one per person, first come, first served

RSVP here to reserve your covering and skip the line.

The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp adds:
Who Is That Masked Person?

That’s RIOC President Susan Rosenthal wearing her mask. You should wear yours, too. She misses everyone on Roosevelt Island and cannot wait to be able to come back to the Island as soon as possible.

Tuesday, May 12, 2020

RIOC Roosevelt Island Community Report - Farmers Market Opens This Saturday With Seniors/Disabled Special Hours, Contact PSD If You See Groups Not Social Distancing & Ask Susan About Face Coverings, PSD Bike Safety Enforcing, Coler Hospital

Here's May 12 Community Update from Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC)

Farmers Market Resumes This Saturday

We are happy to report that the Farmers Market will resume this Saturday in Good Shepherd Plaza from 6:00 AM – 3:00 PM. Please click here for the revised set of operating rules.

Hey, Susan! Questions

Today we’d like to highlight two questions we’ve received from Roosevelt Island residents for President Rosenthal.

Question 1:

Please post a big sign: No bikes on sidewalks, No visitors, or runners without a mask. The governor thinks it is a lack of respect for other people’s lives.


The Public Safety Department is charged with enforcing the rules about bicycles riding on the sidewalks. And although masks are strongly encouraged by Governor Cuomo, they are not mandatory as some individuals are unable to wear them for health reasons. Our PSD officers ask people who are not wearing masks to do so.

Question 2:

Roosevelt Island Beacon Program Virtual Zoom Youth Talk Show Every Wednesday Starting May 13 - Focus On Weekly Themes And Topics Suggested By Social Media, Email RI Beacon To Join The Talk Show

The Child Center of New York operates the Roosevelt Island Beacon after school program at PS/IS 217. During the Coronavirus Pandemic, the Roosevelt Island Beacon has gone online with their programs and is adding a Virtual Talk Show. According to the Roosevelt Island Beacon Assistant Director Sakinah Muhammad:

We are hope you are doing well and thank you for your continued efforts during these difficult times! The RI Beacon program will be hosting a weekly talk show via Zoom for 4th Grade-College Students. It will also be recorded and posted on our YouTube

Click Here to Subscribe

We hope to engage our participants by having them join the live Zoom talk show, every Wednesday from 5:30 - 6:30 pm. The show will focus on various weekly themes and topics suggested by social media audiences. The hour will be broken up into different segments including but not limited to:
  • Individual check-ins.
  • Themed discussions led by hosts .
  • Social media minute (exploring themes of laughter and connection)
  • Q & A between the hosts and audience.
We are kindly asking parents, if your child does not have a video consent form, please do not have them join the Zoom call, or kindly send an email stating they have consent to

If you are interested in joining our talk show this Wednesday, email so you can receive the Zoom meeting details.
As previously reported, as of now, the NYC Beacon Summer Camps have been eliminated due to budget cuts

Monday, May 11, 2020

Roosevelt Island Farmers Market Re-Opening Saturday May 16, Maintain Your Social Distance And Face Covering Required To Enter - Will Roosevelt Island Firefighters And McManus Field Open Too, No Response From RIOC

The Roosevelt Island Saturday Farmers Market

Image Of Farmers Market at Good Shepherd Plaza From March 21

has been closed since March 28 due to the Coronavirus Pandemic.

Earlier today, I asked Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC):
I understand the Farmers Market is opening this coming Saturday.

Is that true?

What procedures are being followed to maintain social distancing. Any other statement from RIOC on opening of Farmers Market?

Will the Firefighters and McManus Field be re-opened too as long as social distancing practices are maintained?
and received this announcement from RIOC:
Farmers Market Returns This Week

The Farmers Market will return to Good Shepherd Plaza this Saturday, May 16th. The first hour of the market will be strictly for Senior Citizens and the disabled. Social Distancing measures will strictly be enforced by PSD officers. We will release further details about this event throughout the week.
Wengerd Farms' Israel Wengerd adds that face coverings are required for everyone to enter the Farmers Market and they will be giving out gloves upon entering. Stay tuned for more info about opening of Roosevelt Island Farmers Market including hours of operation.

So far no response from RIOC about re-opening McManus and Firefighters Fields which are closed due to the Coronavirus Pandemic. But questions have been raised if closing the fields is the right policy? Can the Roosevelt Island playing fields be re-opened with social distancing as is done at the Roosevelt Island Cornell Tech campus?

Take The Roosevelt Island Coronavirus School Shutdown Virtual Art History Lesson Challenge To Create Your Own Version Of A Young Girl Reading Painting By Jean Honoré Fragonard - More RI Virtual Activities Available Too

Earlier this month we began a Roosevelt Island Art History Lesson Program developed by Roosevelt Island Residents Association (RIRA) Children, Youth & Education Committee Chair Adib Mansour:

Lesson 5 this week will be A Young Girl Reading, Jean Honoré Fragonard 1776
According to Mr Mansour:
I believe the students on the island as well as their parents /caretakers, are searching for activities to share with their children at home.

My idea is to provide parents / caretakers and the youth of this beautiful island educational outlets with fun activities. These consist of easy to learn facts, easy for the youth to learn on their own or with the help of the families / caretakers.

I know how difficult it is for the islanders to be quarantined and hope that these lessons / fun activities would give them a physical and emotional relief. At this time, I will concentrate on Art History which will include: Leonardo Da Vinci, Michelangelo, El Greco, Gainsborough, Fragonard, Goya, Sir Edward Burns-Jones, Van Gogh, Salvador Dali, Edgar Degas, Edouard Manet, Paul Cézanne, Thomas Eakins, Pierre-August Renoir, and Auguste Rodin.

Sunday, May 10, 2020

Happy Mother's Day From Roosevelt Island During Coronavirus Pandemic- You May Not Be Able To Be Together But Tell Her She's Loved And Appreciated

Mother's Day is different this year due to the Coronavirus Pandemic Social Distancing, but still, here's wishing every Mom a very Happy's Mother's Day

If you can't give your Mom a Great Big Hug and Kiss today, tell her how much she is loved and appreciated.

Here's a History Of Mother's Day