Saturday, November 6, 2021

Live Music Every Friday Night At Roosevelt Island's Granny Annie's, Take A Listen To Johnny Cash's Ring Of Fire - Boozy Hot Chocolate & Warm Mulled Cider On A Cold Night Too

Roosevelt Island's Granny Annie's Bar & Kitchen is hosting live music every Friday night from 7 - 10 PM with Derek Dempsey. Here's a little of Johnny Cash's Ring of Fire from last night.

The weather is starting to get cold. Stay warm with a Granny Annies Boozy Hot Chocolate
or worm mulled cider.
Granny Annie's has also had a County Bluegrass Sunday Brunch. Not sure if they still do.
More info about menu, delivery and upcoming events at Granny Annie's website.

Friday, November 5, 2021

RIOC Announces Roosevelt Island Tram Cabin Maintenance Work Beginning November 15 Thru End Of 2021 - Only 1 Cabin Will Be In Service Operating "As Needed Load And Go", Long Lines Can Be Expected During Rush Hour Adds RIOC

The Roosevelt Island Operating Corp (RIOC) announced today:

Please be advised, beginning Monday, November 15th, Leitner-POMA, operators of the R.I. Tram, will begin maintenance work on both cabins to continue ensuring the safe operations of the Tram. 

During this work, which is scheduled to last through the end of December 2021 (weather dependent), only one Tram cabin will be in operation at a time. The Tram will operate on an as needed “load and go” departure throughout its regular hours of operation.

Please plan your travel accordingly, as long lines for the Tram can be expected during rush hour. To supplement Tram service during this planned work period, the RIOC Red Bus will be providing free shuttle service, to and from Manhattan, Mondays – Fridays, from 3 PM – 8:30 PM.

Schedules for Red Bus Shuttle and regular service below:

Roosevelt Island to Manhattan Shuttle 

  • Departs hourly from the R.I. Tram Station (300 Main St.), making all northbound local stops to Capobianco Field (opposite P.S./I.S. 217), before heading into Manhattan.
  • First trip will depart from the R.I. Tram Station at 3 PM
  • Last trip will depart from the R.I. Tram Station at 8 PM

Manhattan to Roosevelt Island Shuttle

  • Departs on the half hour from the southwest side of 2nd Avenue, between 58th & 59th Streets, and will make all southbound local bus stops (starting with 591 Main St.) to the R.I. Tram Station
  • Last trip will depart Manhattan at 8:30 PM 

Regular Red Bus Service:

  • Will continue normal morning rush hour schedule from 7 AM – 10 AM, with pick up at the R.I. Tram station approximately every 7 ½ minutes
  • Will continue to operate from 10 AM – 3 PM, with pick up at the R.I. Tram Station approximately every 15 minutes
  • No changes to regular evening rush hour schedule
  • No changes to regular weekend service

Sad News, Roosevelt Island Lost A Great Friend - Life Frames/Living Library Founder Bonnie Ora Sherk Passed Away Recently

Roosevelt Island resident Matt Katz reports the sad news that A Living Library Founder Bonnie Ora Sherk recently passed away.

According to Mr Katz:

Our friend and long-time colleague involved with the beautification of Roosevelt Island, Bonnie Ora Sherk, 

                                                                                                  Image From A Living Library

passed away in August at her home in San Francisco. While not a Roosevelt Island resident, Bonnie had a second home in Manhattan and came to us over twenty years ago on a $50,000 Ford Foundation grant. 

Bonnie was a landscape architect with credentials in San Francisco and around the world. Her early focus here was Southpoint Park which was slated for major renovations, and Bonnie's schematics for that task were printed in The Main Street WIRE March 20, 2004 issue at the time. They included plans for a boathouse and launching site for kayaks regrettably never built. The Trust for Public Land conducted its own planning at the time, which would have included a make-over of the Renwick Smallpox Hospital Ruin. RIOC rejected these innovative ideas and produced our current, modest Southpoint Park. 

Bonnie was the founder and director of Life Frames, Inc. the sponsor of A Living Library (ALL) whose mission was, "to transform derelict environments with systemically integrated hands-on learning for all ages resulting in ecological, place-based branch Living Library & Think Parks in diverse parts of the world." Her work has been displayed at the P.S. 1 gallery in Queens as well as at the Biennale in Milan, Italy.  

Bonnie never received the municipal financial support in New York City that supported her projects in San Francisco, but took advantage of the RIOC Public Purpose Fund to continue creating projects, built with the sweat equity from all sectors of our population. She turned her attention to the PS/IS 217 schoolyard where both children and adults labored to haul the soil and manure necessary to transform the area under the hallway windows into a vegetable and flower garden. 

                                                                                                                 Image From A Living Library

She planted an orchard of fruit trees on the west promenade school property, tragically destroyed during major school renovations. There are still two pin oaks, planted by the school kids, across Main Street from the school entrance. 

Currently, A Living Library is represented by the garden 

located between our new library building and Blackwell Park, now under renovation. The park, under the leadership of ALL Director China Bushell, is maintained with the support of many residents, old and young, and you may have joined the Trick or Treaters at that wonderfully (gruesomely?) decorated crypt over Halloween.

Those of us who worked with Bonnie over the years miss her terribly. We know how much she loved Roosevelt Island and Roosevelt Islanders. A memorial is tentatively planned for next May, Bonnie's birthday with a plaque to be placed on one of the garden's benches and a tree planted in her name. What could be more appropriate?

Here's a 2014 interview with Bonnie Ora Sherk describing her A Living Library life long project.

EcoArt Space has more on Bonnie Ora Sherk.

Condolences to Ms Sherk's family, friends and colleagues.

Thursday, November 4, 2021

The Ghouls Of Roosevelt Island Organize Outdoor Mile Long Trick Or Treat Halloween Celebration Route Last Sunday, Fantastic Costumes, Spooky Spirits & Outdoor Fun - Best RI Halloween Celebration Anyone Can Remember Says The Ghouls

A group of Roosevelt Island residents, calling themselves The Ghouls Of RI, organized a local Halloween celebration last Sunday. According to the Ghouls Of RI:

By all accounts, on this past Sunday, the Roosevelt Island community held the best Halloween event anyone can remember. For two hours in the late afternoon, fifty to sixty participating families, residents, businesses and organizations ran outdoor Trick Or Treating stations 

which together spanned over a mile long route along the east and west sides of the island, from Southtown to Manhattan Park.

From simple tables to decorated scenes, adults and children alike donning costumes, the island came alive with the Halloween spirit.
There was a state of the art photobooth, 

there were stations with music, and costumes, fantastic costumes everywhere! 

The Outdoor Trick or Treating route was chock full of spooky and delightful tidbits of human creativity on display. 

One of the silver linings of the pandemic is the way people have begun to think outside the box to find new ways to thrive. Nowhere was this more apparent than on Halloween this year. An idea sparked by a local parent on a community Facebook page last year was met with such enthusiasm and joy, it seemed like a decided improvement on the way we New Yorkers used to do our domicile Trick or Treating, where kids took to the halls and stairwells and elevators in small, windowless spaces and came back with a truckload of a Halloween haul. The new “pandemic Halloween” brought us out of our boxes, into the fresh air, and it brought us together. It was New and Improved, bringing some of the best elements of suburban Halloweens to the city. It is an example of how hardship can make us better.  

This year, we decided not to wait to hear whether Halloween would be cancelled by RIOC, State or City officials and expand upon the brilliance of our outdoor Halloween. This outdoor Halloween version of things was exciting precisely because it wouldn’t have to be fettered by public officials, or be at the mercy of changing COVID statistics. This year, the event went a little bigger, putting out a call for participants early in October, with flyers posted around the island 

and conversations to bring in local businesses and organizations. Then big, colorful posters went up,complete with a QR code that could be scanned for a digitalized map of the route. While we don’t have an exact count of the numbers, it’s estimated that nearly 1000 people participated on Sunday. 

To all who participated, we thank you for linking hearts and minds with us to make this event truly magical. While some old traditions may be on hold, like the Halloween Parade, there is always space for new ones to be created. Our entire community-- from the youngest to the oldest-- has made clear that the Roosevelt Island spirit is here to stay. Thank you all for your support of our second annual Outdoor Trick or Treating; we will see you in 2022!

More Roosevelt Island Zero Waste Initiatives - Eileen Fisher Free Renew, Reuse And Rewear Women's Clothing Giveaway At RI Carter Burden Senior Center Saturday November 6 - Over 1 Thousand Pieces Available, Open To Entire RI Community

Another example of the Roosevelt Island Zero Waste movement taking place Saturday November 6. As previously reported, the annual Roosevelt Island Pumpkin Smash, turning Halloween waste into nutrient rich compost, returns to the Manhattan Park lawn this Saturday.

The Eileen Fisher clothing company has a sustainability program to recycle their clothes. According to the Eileen Fisher website:

Welcome to RENEW, a take-back program that gives EILEEN FISHER clothes life beyond your closet. You bring back your old pieces, we find them another home—or turn them into entirely new designs....
The Carter Burden Roosevelt Island Senior Center (546 Main Street) is hosting a free Renew, Reuse and Rewear Clothing Giveaway of Eileen Fisher women's clothing on Saturday November 6 from 10 AM - 1 PM.

Roosevelt Island Senior Center Executive Director Lisa Fernandez adds:
Open to the entire Roosevelt Island community. We picked up 1,000 pieces of clothing this morning!!
Here's more on the Eileen Fisher Renew program.

Wednesday, November 3, 2021

Sponsored Post - Return Of The Great Annual Roosevelt Island Pumpkin Smash With NYC Compost Hosted By Big Reuse Saturday November 6 At Manhattan Park Lower Lawn - You're Invited To Give New Life As Nutrient Rich Compost To Halloween Waste

Roosevelt Island resident and iDig2Learn Founder Christina Delfico reports:


Don’t let your Pumpkins haunt the landfill! Please join us for a smashing good time (rain or shine) Saturday, November 2nd from 11am to 2pm on Manhattan Park’s lower lawn (between building #20 and #30 facing Manhattan’s skyline). All are welcome to this free event.

Get your pumpkin therapy on!
Come smash, chop and throw pumpkins to break ‘em into bits so that our partners from NYC Compost Project hosted by Big Reuse can give ‘em a new life as nutrient-rich compost, which comes right back to amend our island soils.

Delicious cakes made locally by Andrea, cider and cookies from our farmers market will make this day even sweeter. We welcome bringing your own mug to help us reduce waste and to keep the neighborhood clean and green.

Fan favorite, the leaf crunch, is back too, so please bring your favorite fallen leaves on your way to the Smash to add to the pile!

This is one of our favorite events and helps hit home that food scraps are not trash but valuable.
Thanks to partners Manhattan Park and RIOC for making this event possible. And to Coach Scot’s baseball players and the Girl Scouts for volunteering.

Local Anthony Longo and son, co-founders of @grin_10044 , say “Roll through to check out the new Bam!Boo! Bowling experiment too!”

There will be a Halloween costume drop box for costumes no longer needed and a used battery tube.

Big Reuse has returned to support this Pumpkin Smash on Roosevelt Island but they never really left. Thanks to their ongoing support, and that of the local Haki Compost Collective volunteers, residents have now dropped over 200,000 pounds of food scraps each Saturday from 9am to 2pm for composting since 2015.

One third of NYC’s waste stream is organic waste so let’s get that out of our buildings and back into the soil. @nyczerowaste

A bit grumpy about composting?
Stop by the ScanScrap table for the unveiling of new supportive initiative for those not convinced.

Be sure to visit partner tables including longtime supporters from the RI Garden Club, who will highlight our worm friends, and iDig2Learn to find out more about Haki composting initiatives.

See you at the Smash!

Here are scenes from 2017 Roosevelt Island Pumpkin Smash

Monday, November 1, 2021

NYC Democratic Party Mayoral Nominee Eric Adams And City Council District 5 Nominee Julie Menin Hold Get Out The Vote Rally Yesterday In Carl Schurz Park Across East River From Roosevelt Island - Republican NYC Council Nominee Mark Foley Campaigns Nearby Too

NYC Election day for Mayor, City Council, Public Advocate, Comptroller and Borough President is tomorrow November 2. The Roosevelt Island polling location is at PS/IS 217 (645 Main Street) from 6 am to 9 PM. A sample ballot is here.

NYC Democratic Party Mayoral nominee Eric Adams and NYC Council District 5 (covering Roosevelt Island, Upper East Side and East Harlem) Democratic Party Nominee Julie Menin held a Get Out The Vote campaign rally yesterday afternoon in Carl Schurz park across the East River from Roosevelt Island. 

Speaking to his supporters, Mr Adams said: 

... We must be safe in our city. 

The prerequisite to prosperity is public safety and justice and they go together. We don't have to divide the two. 

We could have a new ecosystem of public safety that would include us all. The good guys must win and they wear blue uniforms and blue jeans. 

I want people to see that. But I also wanted people to know about my high income earners those who are demonized. Those 65 000 that pay 51% of our income taxes. I wanted people to know about their donation to our museums , their donation into programs to help fill the gap, their donations to foundations. Those donations go to the museums and to Broadway and to use their discretionary dollars to help our community.

We're not dividing our city. There's the ecosystem of those who drive the limousine should be paid good salaries and those who sit in the back of the limousine should be in this city. That's what this city is about and that's how it becomes a great city... 

... the beauty of diversity, that's our secret weapon. That is who we are. I mean this is the only country that does dream attached to it's name. There's no French dream there's no German dream there's no Polish dream but there's an American dream....

... I am so excited, I was waiting to say just get Julie elected so we could have a partner. Her competency, we have done so much together throughout the years...

Here are the full remarks from Mr. Adams

Ms Menin said:

... I cannot tell you how fired up I am about this election, about my election, about Eric Adams election, about the whole Democratic ticket, Alvin Brag, Mark Levine the whole ticket. And I'm fired up because we're the party of science, we're the party of facts, we're the party that is going to fund our public schools, we're the party that's going to build affordable housing, we're the party that's going to make our communities safe and make sure that we have equal justice and accountability. That is what this party is about.... 

Now let's get out and vote.

Local Democratic elected officials came out to support Eric Adams and Julie Menin yesterday including Senator Chuck Schumer, Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney, Borough President Gale Brewer, NY State Senator Jose Serrano, NY State Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright and NYC Council Member Ben Kallos.

NYC Council District 5 Republican nominee Mark Foley was also campaigning at the entrance to Carl Schurz Park.  

According to Mr Foley the number one issue is::

... public safety and police. We support refunding, restoring, reforming and respecting the police and that's what's separating us from my opponent who promised substantial cuts to the NYPD budget in a substantial not superficial way. That message doesn't resonate in this district... 

... I support the vaccine. I do not support a mandate. I think it's terrible what's happening now that these people, these front-line workers who last year were hailed as heroes are being kicked to the curb fired and they're not even allowed to get unemployment and it's just that's unconscionable to me....


 Curtis Sliwa is the Republican Nominee for NYC Mayor.


Sunday, October 31, 2021

Sponsored Post - November 2 Election Day For NYC Mayor, City Council, Public Advocate, Comptroller And Borough President - Roosevelt Island Voting Location At PS/IS 217, Take A Look At Sample Ballot

New York City 2021 Early Voting ending today.. Election Day voting is Tuesday, November 2. On the ballot are candidates for:

  • Mayor,
  • City Council,
  • Public Advocate,
  • Comptroller and 
  • Borough President

Roosevelt Island November 2 voting location is at PS/IS 217 (645 Main Street). Hours are 6:00 Am - 9 PM.

Here's the sample ballot for Roosevelt Island voters.

More info at the NYC Board of Elections website.