Friday, August 3, 2012

Summer Health Fest, Sunday, August 5th


You Are Invited...  
 Summer Health Fest
Sunday, August 5th, 2012/ 11:00am- 4:00pm
175th Street, Between Audubon and St. Nicholas Avenue

Information on Healthy Eating, Men & Women's Health, 
Pediatrics. Blood Pressure test on site.

Co- sponsored by:
NYS Senator Adriano Espaillat
American Cancer Society
Northern Manhattan Cancer Services Program
ACCESS Medicare
Amsterdam Medical Practice


Thursday, August 2, 2012


 NYC Council Speaker Christine. Quinn and City Council member G. Oliver Koppell and Jeffrey Dinowitz held a business luncheon with small business owners to see how they and the City Council can help them operate and grow. The luncheon was held at Greentree Restaurant in the heart of the North Riverdale Merchants Association area, and was well attended with members or representatives of, the South Riverdale Merchants Association, Kingsbridge Business Improvement District, Kingsbridge Riverdale Van Cortlandt Development Corp and others also attending.

 Speaker Quinn opened the meeting by asking everyone to get their lunch, and then Councilman Koppell thanked Speaker Quinn for her attendance at the luncheon to hear from his local merchants and what types of problems that they run into. Koppell noted that the council is not anti-business, but business friendly. Dinowitz also thanked Speaker Quinn for coming to listen, and said that it appears that this is an area that new business wants to come to by the two new shopping centers that are being built in the area.

 There was a question and answer period in which questions about a central data base, the local business city scape, street vendors, lack of bike racks, lack of credit for small business, and the lousy repaving that is being done by DOT in the area were brought up. 

 Quinn answered that the city does send business around to different agencies, but that she is trying to help business by having a central office help in cutting that down. As for the city scape Quinn replied that DOT can come out to do a survey of what can be changed, and gave examples of more trees, better street lights, and even surveillance cameras (but that the city can not pay for such cameras), with Koppell and Dinowitz concurring. On the subject of the repaving Councilman Koppell said the DOT has done a miserable job by towing cars with short notice, and not working on days that signs said they were posted. As for street vendors Quinn said that there is a task force that was set up for Manhattan, and maybe they should come to the area for a day. She added that it is up to the police department, DOT, and Department of Consumer Affairs to monitor street vendors.

  Below are a few photos of the event, which went off very well with everyone learning something new. There was a call for more of the businesses to band together such as having a local Restaurant Week similar to the City and Bronx ones. 

Left - Councilman G.Oliver Koppell addressing the luncheon.
Right - City Council Speaker Quinn addresses the luncheon.
Speaker Quinn answers a question from Mr. Gary Wartel (far left) the President of the North Riverdale Merchants Association.


The focus of Saturday's Health Fair is Access to Healthcare and Preventative Medicine

State Senator Gustavo Rivera (D-WF), along with Montefiore Medical Center and other community health partners, will host the third and final Bronx CAN Health fair of the summer on Saturday, August 4th at St. James Park. The Bronx CAN Health Initiative was launched in a partnership with Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. in 2011 in response to the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation's study that showed the Bronx as the unhealthiest county in the state of New York.
WHO: Senator Gustavo Rivera, Montefiore Medical Center and other community partners 
WHAT: Bronx CAN Health Initiative Final Health Fair of the Summer
WHERE:  St. James Park- 2530 Jerome Ave Bronx NY 10468
WHEN: Saturday, August 4, 2012 1:30-3:30 PM

This event is the last in a series of Bronx CAN Health fairs. Saturday's health fair will include a free pilates class as well as free health screenings. All events are free and open to the public.

New York League of Conservation Voters Endorses Luis Sepulveda For State Assembly

    The New York League of Conservation Voters, which works to make environmental sustainability a top political and policy priority in New York State has announced its endorsement of candidate Luis Sepulveda for the 87th Assembly District.

As an environmental advocate in his community in the Bronx, Luis Sepulveda co-founded the Cross Bronx Expressway initiative. This agenda was created to bring attention to the toxicity produced by the traffic congestion of the expressway and its deleterious effects on the health of the surrounding community.

Although Sepulveda is a new candidate, this has not undermined his dedication to environmental health. His background in environmental biology will prove to be very useful in the fight to protect New York’s environment.

“The Bronx needs leaders who understand the importance of environmental sustainability, and realize that it is the path to a greener community and a stronger economy” said Marcia Bystryn, NYLCV’s president. “Luis Sepulveda has proved that he has the passion and the drive to fight for a greener New York within the State Assembly, and that’s why the New York League of Conservation Voters is proud to endorse his candidacy.”

In response to the endorsement, Sepulveda said: “I am honored to be endorsed by the New York League of Conversation Voters. The mission of this environmentally-oriented organization is right in line with my campaign's ethos which aspires to make the great borough of the Bronx and the state of New York, "greener" places to live. With their support, I will be a staunch advocate for the advancement of environmental concerns within the state legislature.”

DOT Still Leaves Road Paving Unfinished

  We told you in today's edition of the Bronx News about the Movie in Seton Park, and how the road Independence Avenue was milled the first week of July weeks before the event and was awaiting repaving by the Department of Transportation. Well the event went on July 21st with the street still unpaved, and Independence Avenue as of August 2nd still has not completely been repaved. DOT also put up signs for the repaving with less than 24 hour notice, and then did not repave the area only to put up signs for the next day.

  The stretch of Independence Avenue from West 232nd Street to West 239th Street was milled in two days, but the repaving has gone on one block at a time. The last two blocks we will say was held up due to Con Edison work under the street, but Con Ed was finished quickly. This stretch of Independence Avenue is an emergency route that ambulances, police, fire trucks, buses, and many trucks use as an alternate to the busy service road of the Henry Hudson Parkway that often gets backed up. You will see in the photos below how the paving is going, sections of the road left unpaved, and problems due to the way DOT has left the unpaved sections.

Left - The corner of Independence Avenue and West 239th (south side)
Right - Crater left in street by Dot after removing Con Ed patch.

Left - Area by a handicap access ramp is not completley smoothed down.
Right - Sewer cover sticks up several inches by unpaved section remaining.

Left - Shows seams in repaving
Right - Another photo of the sewer cover that sticks up past repaved area in front of 3777 Independence Avenue.

Left - BX 10 bus going down unpaved area of Independence Avenue.
Right - MTA Express bus enters Independence Avenue South at West 239th even though the street has not been completely repaved. Note that the street is closed even though no paving is going on.

  On Friday August 3rd the DOT paving crew finished paving the last section of Independence Avenue, and other areas in the local community board that were scheduled to be milled and repaved.
 We want to commend the mayor on the usual swiftness, and lack of information as is commonly found throughout the Bloomberg administration.  

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Manny Tavarez On the Ballot

This came in from the Manny Tavarez for 33rd State Senate campaign.

Manny Tavarez is On the Ballot for New York’s Senate Democratic Primary
            New York State Senate Candidate Manny Tavarez has released the         
            following statement:

“I am proud to announce that I have fulfilled all of the requirements set by New York´s Board of Elections, and that I am officially a candidate in this year’s State Senate Democratic Primary.  I am thankful to each member of my team, and to all who continue to help and support me.  I am especially honored to have the support of State Senator Reverend Ruben Diaz!

Since the beginning of my candidacy for State Senate, I have been warmly greeted and welcomed by so many people who work and live in this Senatorial District.  They continue to make one thing very clear to me: We need a change.  I am honored by their support and trust, and look forward to serving them and representing them when I win this election.

My campaign platform is “Putting People First.”  These people include families and individuals who need affordable housing, senior citizens who need and always deserve quality care and support, sick and infirmed people who need affordable healthcare, and young people who need and deserve quality education. 

They also include young men who need programs to build their lives and keep them away from crime, guns, and violence that have been plaguing our neighborhoods. I believe that because of my experience in professional sports, I will be able to take practical steps to bring sports programs into the district.  These programs will play a significant role in the development of many young men.  The programs will promote fitness and provide valuable lessons in teamwork, leadership, responsibility, integrity, courage, honor and compassion. 

My campaign will also stress the need to provide women and families with alternatives to abortion.  We need to protect and defend the lives of all of our children, the most vulnerable members of our society.  We need to be sure that New York treats all children’s lives as treasures instead of seeing our children lives as burdens.

I look forward to running an effective campaign and to achieving victory on September 13th.”

For further information please contact Brady Tavarez 646-204-8682.

Wave Hill Events August 17–August 24

Jumping frog, twisty owl, downward dog, oh my! Child and parent or caregiver practice fun yoga poses that build strength, increase flexibility and relax the body and mind in this one-hour class taught by Lisa Ferraro, an instructor at Yoga for Bliss. Incorporate breathing and relaxation techniques into a dynamic and playful experience that you and your child can enjoy together. Please wear loose, comfortable clothing and bring a mat if possible. Recommended for ages 2–5. Sessions are held outdoors only and are weather dependent. Call 718.549.3200 x245 by 8AM on the day of the class for weather updates. Session fee: $15 Member/$23 Non-member. Session fee includes one adult and one child, Registration opens onsite at 9:30AM.

Quiet like a mountain, moving like a river, Tai Chi is a sequence of gentle movements based on images found in nature. Short and long form classes are led by Irving Yee, an active member of the William CC Chen Tai Chi School. Sessions are held outdoors only and are weather dependent. Call 718.549.3200 x245 by 8AM on the day of the class for weather updates. Session fee: $15 Member/$23 Non-member. Registration opens onsite at 9:30AM.
ON THE GROUNDS, 10AM Beginners, 11AM Intermediates

Roll Out the Landscape/Haga una película de Wave Hill
Experience and sketch some of the many delights of Wave Hill's landscape. Then extend the landscape of your choice onto a paper scroll to make your own mini nature movie. Free, and admission to the grounds is free until noon.

Discover the fascinating history of the gardens, buildings and the people who once called Wave Hill their home, with historian and Wave Hill Garden Guide Deirdre LaPorte. Free, and admission to the grounds is free until noon.

Join an exhibition interpreter for one of our regularly scheduled tours of Tending toward the Untamed: Artists Respond to the Wild Garden. Wave Hill’s Wild Garden serves as inspiration for new painting, photography, animation, sculpture and installation, by artists Gary Carsley, Chris Doyle, Julie Evans, Isabella Kirkland, Janelle Lynch, Rebecca Morales, Erik Sanner and Anat Shiftan. In the Sunroom Project Space, Wave Hill’s Van Lier Visual Artist Fellows Nova Jiang and Cameron Rowland have each created installations. Jiang’s project combines art, technology and garden design to create an interactive experience for visitors; Rowland investigates the architecture and open space of public housing projects in relation to Wave Hill. Free with admission to the grounds.

Release stress and find refuge from city life by practicing seasonal yoga, surrounded by the beauty of Wave Hill. Hatha Yoga involves the use of physical postures, breath control and meditation to create a supple, strong and relaxed body-mind. Classes are led by Neem Dewji, certified in Hatha and Therapeutic Yoga from The Yoga for Health Foundation in Bedfordshire, England, and The Integral Yoga Institute in NYC. Participants should bring a mat, dress in loosely fitting clothing and come to class with breakfast well digested. All levels welcomed. Sessions are held outdoors only and are weather dependent. Call 718.549.3200 x245 by 8AM on the day of the class for weather updates. Session fee: $15 Member/$23 Non-member. Registration opens onsite at 9:30AM.

Roll Out the Landscape/Haga una película de Wave Hill
Experience and sketch some of the many delights of Wave Hill's landscape. Then extend the landscape of your choice onto a paper scroll to make your own mini nature movie.  Free with admission to the grounds.

Join us for an hour-long tour of seasonal garden highlights. Free with admission to the grounds.

Closed to the public

Each week, a “mystery reader” from Wave Hill’s staff shares a few of her or his favorite stories with budding young naturalists. Sessions are held outdoors only and are weather dependent. Ideal for ages 3 and up and their adult companions. Free, and admission to the grounds is free all day.

Try an outdoor yoga class, join a guided garden walk or wander onto the Great Lawn to enjoy a plein air performance by local BxIndie musicians, through the Bronx Council on the Arts. Bring your own folding chair and enjoy the concert from the comfort of your own favorite seat. Gardens open until 8:30PM. Glyndor Gallery, Perkins Visitor Center, The Shop at Wave Hill and Food Service open until 8PM. Check for the schedule for Sunset Wednesdays free shuttle service to and from Metro-North and the #1 subway. All events are free with admission to the grounds with the exception of yoga.

Find refuge from city life by practicing seasonal yoga on the tranquil lawns at Wave Hill. Decrease stress and increase your energy by focusing on your posture, breath control and meditation. Sunset Wednesday sessions are taught by Yoga for Bliss instructor Joanne Salome. Participants should bring a mat if possible, dress in loosely fitting clothing and come to class with their latest meal well digested.  All levels welcomed. Sessions are held outdoors only and are weather dependent. Call 718.549.3200 x245 by 8AM on the day of the class for weather updates. Session fee: $15 Member/$23 Non-member. Registration onsite day-of.

Join us for a short guided walk through the evening gardens. Visit a different garden every Sunset Wednesday through August. Free with admission to the grounds.

WED, AUGUST 22    BxINDIE MUSIC AT SUNSET—THE BODOMA GARIFUNA-CULTURAL BANDEnjoy a plein air performance by local BxIndie musicians, through a collaboration with the Bronx Council on the Arts. New this year, you can bring your own folding chair and enjoy the performance from the comfort of your own favorite seat. WNYC Battle of the Bronx Bands winner BODOMA Garifuna-Cultural Band performs West African influenced percussion and song. Free with admission to the grounds.

Capture the beauty of Wave Hill’s landscape in these drop-in, open-air studio sessions. Wave Hill provides easels and boards, and you bring art-making materials and paper or canvas. All levels welcome; new artists encouraged! Facilitated group critique at the end of each session. Weather dependent. Session fee: $10 Member/$18 Non-member. Registration day-of at Perkins Visitor Center starting at 9:30AM. Meet on the grounds for critiques. This weekly series continues through August.

Don’t fear the shears! Horticultural Interpreter Charles Day shares techniques for reviving your tired summer plants.  Free with admission to the grounds.

Jumping frog, twisty owl, downward dog, oh my! Child and parent or caregiver practice fun yoga poses that build strength, increase flexibility and relax the body and mind in this one-hour class taught by Lisa Ferraro, an instructor at Yoga for Bliss. Incorporate breathing and relaxation techniques into a dynamic and playful experience that you and your child can enjoy together. Please wear loose, comfortable clothing and bring a mat if possible. Recommended for ages 2–5. Sessions are held outdoors only and are weather dependent. Call 718.549.3200 x245 by 8AM on the day of the class for weather updates. Session fee: $15 Member/$23 Non-member. Session fee includes one adult and one child, Registration opens onsite at 9:30AM.

Summer Olympics Comes to NY Institute for Special Education Thursday - 8/2/12


Inspired by the many heroic performances at this year’s summer Olympics in London, approximately 100 developmentally delayed preschool students, ages three to five, each class representing a different country, will demonstrate their athletic abilities and team sportsmanship at The New York Institute for Special Education Olympics, Thursday, August 2nd (Games and Awards Ceremony) at 9:45 a.m.  – 12:30 p.m., 999 Pelham Parkway North, Bronx.

Preschoolers will compete in: A javelin throw using pool noodles, weight lifting using various sized water bottles, hurdles, balance beam tricks and badminton with sand paddles and beach balls. Following the games, students will be awarded gold medals and an Olympic torch will be lit.    

DATE:   Thursday, August 2nd (Games and Awards Ceremony)

TIME:             9:45 a.m. – 12:30 p.m.
PLACE:         The New York Institute for Special Education
                        Solarium Auditorium
                        999 Pelham Parkway North
                        Bronx, New York

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Board of Elections Hearings-Is it a Big Waste of Money?

   We were at the hearings of the Board of Elections for the Bronx candidates that were either challenging their opponent or being challenged by their opponent. The hearings started on time at 10 AM however only 6 of the 10 commissioners were on hand when the hearings began. A quorum of 6 of the 10 commissioners is needed only to hold hearings and be able to vote on matters before the board. We were given the names of the missing commissioners by Ms. Valerie Vasquez (of the board) as Commissioners Dent (Bklyn Dem), Schacher (Bklyn Rep), Saunias (Man Dem), and Polonco (Bx Rep). We saw Commissioners Dent and Schacher arrive at 10:20AM, and Commissioner Polonco and Saunias arrived a short time later.

   We had a story (in our column in the Bronx News) two years ago at this time about "King Stanley" referring to one of (if not) the best election lawyers in the Bronx Mr. Stanley K. Schlein ESQ..King Stanley was magnificent in his arguments in trying to keep his (or should we say Bronx Democratic County) candidates on, while doing his best to knock off any opponents. While there remained a few "Renegade" (as king Stanley said) candidates that were kept on the ballot by the commissioners of the Board of Elections, those words "Similar Handwriting, Forgery, and Fraud" were said by King Stanley which means that those renegades would be taken to court to knock them off since the Board of Elections does not rule on those items.

   We saw one possible candidate for a city council seat in 2013 in the audience taking notes, and he probably wanted to see what he would be up against as a renegade candidate or would have on his side should the Bronx Democratic County organization endorse him. Mayor Bloomberg has said that the Board of Elections is "A waste of taxpayer money", and we might have to agree with the mayor. Nothing has changed at the Board of Elections, and there is no reason why the incumbent state legislatures would want to change a system that is tilted way in their favor. We also wondered how a commissioner appointed by the borough county organization (Democrat or Republican) could rule on a matter of their party in their borough. Below are a few photos of the hearings

Left - The hearings have started and there are some empty chairs.
Right - Commissioner Polonco is seated.

Left - King Stanley with his crew as they await the next challenge.
Right - King Stanley in action defending the petition of 78th A.D. Assemblyman Jose Rivera. It was Rivera that fired King Stanley during Rivera's tenure as Bronx Democratic County Chairman.



-         Festival will include free community events
-  Summer Music Series will feature all-star performances
   Once again, the summer sizzles in the Bronx as the 2nd Annual SalsaFest brings together some of the borough’s best salseros, dancing in the streets and on the sand. Produced by Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. and the Bronx Tourism Council and funded by NYC & Company, SalsaFest, which made its debut last year, begins on August 3 and will continue through to August 26, the last of the Summer Music Series Concerts at Orchard Beach.
“This is the borough that gave birth to what has become an international phenomenon, and it is only fitting that we celebrate ’El Condado de la Salsa‘ together with music, dancing, old-fashioned block parties and fun in the sun,” said Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr.   “I invite Bronxites and visitors alike to come and join me at Orchard Beach for another great summer of Salsa!”
“Music is a universal language spoken quite fluently around the world,” says Olga Luz Tirado, Executive Director of the Bronx Tourism Council. “Visitors will enjoy experiencing authentic Salsa music and dance in the borough where it all began.”
The entertainment begins on Friday, August 3, from 7 – 9 p.m. with a screening of "From Mambo to Hip Hop: A South Bronx Tale," a documentary produced by City Lore and edited by Benh Zeitlin, the award-winning director of the current feature film, “Beasts of the Southern Wild.” Immediately following the screening will be a panel discussion with some of the musicians featured in the film, including Benny Bonilla, a percussionist who was part of Pete Rod­­­riguez's group on their hit, "I Like It Like That;” The Last Mambo King Orlando Marin, bandleader and timbalero, and Jorge "Popmaster Fabel" Pabon, choreographer, hip hop historian and Senior VP of the Rock Steady Crew. The panel will be moderated by the film's co-producer, Elena Martinez, and hosted by Pregones Theater, 571 Walton Avenue. This event is free but reservations are recommended by calling 718.590.3518.  
We continue with Dancing in the Streets 6th Annual Hip Hip Hop Generation Next Block Party, on Saturday, August 4, from 2-9 p.m. in the heart of Hunts Point. Salsa performances include Angel Rodriguez & the Abrazos Orchestra. Also, acclaimed mambo dancer Franck Muhel will perform and teach the mambo during a salsa set played by Orlando Marin, the Last Mambo King, and his Orchestra. Hosted by Dancing in the Streets in collaboration with Casita Maria Center for Arts & Education. This free block party takes place on Simpson Street, between Barretto and East 163rd street.
Also on Saturday, August 4, from 3 – 6:30 p.m., become part of an amazing musical experience when folklorist Elena Martinez leads a tour of musical greats interred at Woodlawn Cemetery. The tour, which includes visiting the gravesites of Miles Davis, Duke Ellington and Irene Castle, culminates in a Tribute to the Queen of Salsa, Celia Cruz, offering a rare opportunity to view the mausoleum of the Grammy-award winning Salsa star. Percussionists, led by multi-Grammy nominated bandleader Bobby Sanabria, will play at various graves including Celia's in tribute to the legendary performer.  Tours are free and begin at 3 p.m. and 5 p.m., rain or shine. This event is hosted by Friends of Woodlawn Cemetery. Take the #4 train to the end of line, Woodlawn Station. At base of station, walk about ½ block. Jerome Avenue entrance is on the right. This event is free, but reservations are recommended by calling 718-920-1469.
The Free Summer Music Series at Orchard Beach officially begins on Sunday, August 12 at noon with Nelson Gonzalez and his All-Star Band. Lauded as one of the greatest “tres” guitar players, Gonzalez has toured with La India and Marc Anthony and was a member of the legendary Fania All-Stars. This event is co-sponsored by Latino Sports and Bronx Lebanon Hospital.
On Saturday, August 18th from noon to 6pm join the annual Morrison Avenue Festival where the community comes together to enjoy music, food, unity and the beautiful weather that the summer brings. Performers include: Nino Segarra, The CopaCabana Band, and Angelo y su Conjunto Modelo. The event takes place on Morrison Avenue and Westchester.

Also on August 18th, Lehman Center for the Performing Arts presents WILLIE COLÓN: La Historia. This concert which begins at 8pm marks the return of Bronx-born Willie Colón, renowned singer, trombonist, composer, producer and director after over a decade of absence from Lehman’s stage. Willie Colón has recorded 40 productions that have sold more than 30 million records worldwide.  His collaboration with Rubén Blades in the album Siembra, is the biggest selling album of all-time for the Salsa/Tropical genre.  Tickets: $50, $40, $30,

The excitement of live music continues on Sunday, August 19, at noon at Orchard Beach with the sounds of the Charanga All Stars. The band is led by Johnny Rodriguez, a Latin music veteran who throughout his 40-year music career has played with greats such as Tito Puente, Tito Rodriguez and Eddie Palmieri. This event is sponsored by Bronx Lebanon Hospital.
Salseros won’t miss out on their last chance to dance salsa in the sand at Orchard Beach on Sunday, August 26, beginning at noon! Come and experience the rhythm of Jazz Master Papo Vázquez with his Pirates and Troubadors. This event is co-sponsored by the National Jazz Museum in Harlem and Bronx Lebanon Hospital. 
For information on more events taking place during Bronx SalsaFest, visit the Bronx Tourism Council’s website,
About the Bronx Tourism Council: Established in 1991, The Bronx Tourism Council is a subsidiary of the Bronx Overall Economic Development Corporation (BOEDC), creating a cohesive and symbiotic relationship between arts and culture and economic development. The role of the Bronx Tourism Council is to promote the borough’s rich history, its institutions, and cultural diversity on a local, national, and international level.  

Monday, July 30, 2012


By Senator Rev. Rubén Díaz
32nd Senatorial District, Bronx County, New York 

Celebrating John Orozco – And His Mother

You should know that many years ago when I was first elected to the New York City Council, John Orozco´s mother, Damaris, came to my office to ask my son, Ruben Diaz Jr., and myself for any assistance that we could offer.  She was determined to find a way for her Bronx family to afford to send John to a school where he could properly train in gymnastics.

We told her that we would do our best to help her and her family. As a City Councilmember and later as a New York State Senator, together with my son, who was a New York State Assemblyman we helped her family raise some money to send her son to train as a gymnast.

You should also know that as part of my outreach for help, I wrote to New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg to ask for any assistance he could offer.  Someone from Mayor Bloomberg's office did call me to ask what the letter was all about.  I explained that there was a poor family in my district who was reaching out for help for one of the children so that the child could have an opportunity that would never be possible without the generosity of others.  The Mayor's aide explained that the Mayor doesn't make personal donations and only gives to organizations or not-for-profit groups, but that he would see what he could do.

That was the last I heard about that.

Raising money was not easy, but John's mother never gave up.  Damaris Orozco is an incredibly determined and dedicated mother.  She made sure that her son would be able to achieve his goals.  When the residents of Harding Park held their Family Day, Damaris Orozco sold rice and beans to help raise money for John to attend gymnastics classes.  She drove him near and far so that he could train and so that his dream to compete in the Olympics could come true.

Now the world celebrates the achievements of Team USA Men’s Gymnastic Star John Orozco as he competes in the 2012 Olympics in London.  John’s mother must be very proud.  He certainly makes the Bronx proud, the United States proud – and he most definitely has made me proud!

Ladies and gentlemen, while I’m sorry that Mayor Bloomberg never came through with help for John Orozco, maybe it’s not too late. Maybe, just maybe, there is something Mayor Bloomberg can do to show his concern for John Orozco and his mother, and find ways to honor more families and individuals who also strive to achieve their dreams.

I am Senator Rev. Rubén Díaz and this is what you should know.



Sunday, July 29, 2012

BP Diaz Helps Muslim Community Celebrate Ramadan

    On Thursday evening July 26th Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. helped the Muslim Community Break Fast that night during the religious observance of Ramadan. Ramadan which started on July 19th this year ends on August 19th, and is the ninth month in the Islamic calendar. During the period of Ramadan it is custom to fast from early morning to sunset. 

    Even though there was a forecast of heavy rain and winds (that did occur) it did not stop the over 350 people who came from many parts of the 5 boroughs to Break Fast with BP Diaz. It was as if the rain and wind held up until the event started, and then ended before the event did. BP Diaz opened by thanking those who came, and said that this was the 4th time that he has done this in his tenure of 4 years. Diaz spoke of the diversity of the Bronx and of his office by saying that as an assemblyman he had Mr. Omar Basil on his staff, and now on his BP staff who made it clear to him of the customs of the Islamic people. 

    Ms. Maryam Hanifah Fofana (VP, The Islamic Support Foundation), Mr. Mohammad A. Jan (President, Madni Masjid of the Bronx), Maf Misbah Uddin (Treasurer of DC 37), and the Islamic Cultural Center (represented by Imam Abdulla Bajaha and Mr. Bakary Camara) were given awards  by BP Diaz for the outstanding work they do. You can see photos of the honorees and of New York City Comptroller John Liu below. Click on a photo to enlarge it.

Left - Ms. Maryam Hanifah Fofana and BP Diaz.       Right - Mr. Mohammad A. Jon and BP Diaz.

Left - Mr. Maf Misbah Uddin and BP Diaz.                    Right - Imam Abdullia Bajaha and Mr. Bakary Camara with BP DIAZ 

New York City Comptroller John Liu with good friend Mr. Ricardo Martinez 78th A.D. State Committeeman.

Bronx CAN (Changing Attitudes Now)Health Initiative

The Bronx CAN (Changing Attitudes Now)Health Initiative, an initiative of Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr’s Office, brings together individuals, elected officials, government agencies, doctors and health providers, places of worship, community gardens and community centers, schools, civic-minded groups and physical fitness centers of all kinds to promote the types of behaviors that lead to healthy lifestyles.
The goal of the Bronx CAN Health Initiative is to have all members of our community – young and old alike – build healthier lives, free of ailments like obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and cardiovascular disease.
As part of the initiative community members are encouraged to set their own health goals, be it losing weight, exercising a few times a week or vowing to eat healthier through the
Bronx CAN Health Challenge
The Challenge check-in at Blink Fitness, located at 744 St.Ann’s Ave and East 156TH Street, on Saturday, August 11, from 10 a.m. - 12 noon, staff from Lincoln Medical and Mental Health Center, a CAN partner, will be on site to register new and access current community residents, record their weight, body mass index and other measurements and screen for diabetes and high blood pressure. Blink Fitness will be extending free trials to all 18+ participants, and will have trainers on site to provide fitness tips. A final weigh-in will be hosted by Blink on SATURDAY, September 8, and they will be providing a complementary 6-month membership to the top male and female participants with the highest percentage of weight loss.

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The East 204th Street & Bainbridge Avenue Merchants Association Present Summer Streets 2012

The East 204th Street & Bainbridge Avenue Merchants Association (E204St & BAMA), in collaboration with the Mosholu Preservation Corporation and Bronx Community Board 7, is hosting its 2nd Summer Streets event series, a Department of Transportation (DOT)-sponsored "Temporary Pedestrian Street/Weekend Walks" program on two consecutive Sundays, July 29 and August 5, 2012 from 12PM - 5PM, along East 204th Street between Bainbridge and Decatur Avenues.

The intent of the program is to create a recurring, multi-block, pedestrian street to promote local businesses and organizations. The purpose of the Summer Streets 2012 events is to help stimulate the local neighborhood economy and bring community residents together.

We invite you to join us on these dates and enjoy fun-filled, family-friendly days in this vibrant community. 

On Sunday, July 29th, Summer Streets 2012 will feature:
·          Helmet Fittings by DOT   12PM - 4PM   In front of Leroy Pharmacy at 358 E. 204th St. (see flyer below for details)
·          Salsa Lessons with Steve Seda   2PM   In front of  Beso Lounge at 320 E. 204th St.  
·          Fitness Challenge Demos by Belin Sport & Fitness 
·          Basketball Tournament by Alpha Phi Alpha - Bronx Chapter
·          Outdoor Shopping 
·          Face Painting & More!

On Sunday, Aug. 5th, don't miss out on the Summer Streets 2012 Concert from 12-5PM, at E. 204th Street & Decatur Avenue, hosted by Anthony & Eileen of BronxNet's No Offense But... TV show!  
Highlights include Latin sensation Anayka, Italian Hip Hop Movement artist SALESE, new voice of music W.R.A.T.H, Hugga ROCKZ, Bachata singer El Happy High, Puerto Rican poet/singer/performer La Bruja and Latin Empire Entertainment artists, LoZoneros, a group born and raised in the Bronx bringing a whole new sound to the Latin urban movement, international recording artist Veronica Kole, and Salsa singer Arlene G! Also featuring special performances by ABADA-Capoeira Bronx, BHARATI Dance Academy, KR3TS Dance Company, Art of Stepping, and X Factor Drumline.  

The day will also feature:

- Fitness Challenge Demos by Belin Sport & Fitness 
- Outdoor Shopping  
- Face Painting & More! 


WHAT: Summer Streets Weekend Walks 2012
WHO: East 204th Street & Bainbridge Ave. Merchants Association
DATE: Sundays, July 29 and August 5, 2012
TIME: 12PM – 5PM
LOCATION: E. 204th Street between Bainbridge & Decatur Avenues, Bronx, NY 10467

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