Friday, September 4, 2015

Cinemax TV Takes Over NYCC

NYCC - New York Comic Con - A New York Super Week Event
October 8 - 11, 2015 | Javits Center
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Show Floor Hours
Thursday: 10:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Friday10:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Saturday10:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Sunday10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Panel Hours
Thursday: 10:30 AM - 10:00 PM
Friday10:30 AM - 10:00 PM
Saturday10:30 AM - 10:00 PM
Sunday10:30 AM - 5:00 PM
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Good News! The Ticket Mailing Deadline Has Been Extended.  Buy Your tickets Before September 14, 2015 at 11:59 PM EDT

A Day of Rememberence

KHNIA Health Fair Sat. Sept. 26th

The Kingsbridge Heights Neighborhood Improvement Association, a 501(c)(3) not for profit 

organization, is sponsoring its Annual Fall Community Health and Wellness Fair.

The Purpose of the Community Health and Wellness Fair is to promote and encourage healthy 

living for individuals and their families within the community.

In addition to healthy living, the Health and Wellness Fair is focused on

           1. Health Awareness

           2. Health Information 

           3. Preventative/Alternative Solutions

           4. Dieting Resources 

We will also be providing attendees with: Free Music, Free Entertainment, Free Health 

Presentations, along with Free Prizes and Giveaways, while they last.

Our Community Health and Wellness Fair will take place on Saturday, September 26, 2015, 

from 10am-5pm, on Reservoir Avenue, between University Avenue and 197th Street, in the 


Currently, we are seeking health care organizations and volunteer participation, as well as 

various types of donations. Our goal is to help ensure the success of this year’s event for the 

Kingsbridge community and all attendees.

For more information, or to reserve a space, please contact our office:

Phone: 718-618-7550


Mailing Address:  2805 University Ave. Suite B, Bronx, NY 10468-2608

Media Contact: Al Chapman

Al Chapman

Chair, Board of Directors

RSVP:  718-618-7550

Back to School Give Away - 9/8/15

Back to School Give Away!
Sponsored by
United Northern Mortgage Bankers
Assemblyman Mark Gjonaj
Assemblyman Marcos Crespo

Tuesday, September, 8th

2105 Williamsbrigde Road
Bronx, NY 10461

* While Supplies Last! *
A parent or guardian must be present with child to receive supplies.

For more information: (718) 409-0109



Above - Yes that is Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. on the mound at Yankee Stadium, and no he was not pitching for the Yankees as BP Diaz showed off his baseball talent at first base in the recent Bronx Democratic County Barbecue and Baseball game. His team scored 9 runs in the top of the first inning and went on to beat a tema which had the new Bronx Democratic County leader Assemblyman Marcos Crespo, and the former Bronx Democratic County Leader Assemblyman (and now Assembly Speaker) Carl Heastie.
Below - BP Diaz throws out the first pitch of the game for the BP's Little League Championship game. 

Above - The Gram Slam All Stars enter the field from the dugout area where some of their favorite baseball players sit while they wait to bat.
Below - The entire team including reserves and coaches for Grand Slam lines up on the field at Yankee Stadium.

The Kingsbridge Knights wait their turn to enter the field at Yankee Stadium as some of their favorite baseball players do.
Below - The entire team including reserves and coaches for the Kingsbridge Knights line up on the field at Yankee Stadium.

Above - The Kingsbridge Knights huddle on the infield before the gams.
Below - The Kingsbridge Knights quickly got out to a 1 - 0 lead, and won the game 4 - 2.

Kennedy Campus to Reopen on Time Minus 15 Classrooms

  The above photo shows the damage that was done by the gas explosion 2 weeks ago at the Kennedy Campus that houses 7 separate schools where JFK High School was. 15 classrooms where the damage was done are closed off by new walls that have been placed in the school on 3 different floors. The 6th story labs in addition to classrooms on the 5th and 7th floors are to be reconstructed sometime early next year when the work to be done is bid out and contractors found. It was said that this contractor working at the explosion site would not be allowed to bid on the contract. 

  Pictured above from right top left are - Rana Khan (Department of Education), Lorraine Grillo (School Construction Authority), Patrick Wehle (Department of Buildings), Chris Dandrea (Department of Health and Mental Hygiene), John Shea (Department of Education), and Ron Caccioppoli (Department of Education). 

  The 6 people above were the panel of experts to reassure the parents and others at the poorly attended Town Hall meeting to announce that the 7 schools that make up the Kennedy Campus will open on the first day of school despite the gas explosion 2 weeks prior that has closed off 15 classrooms on 3 different floors of the building. 

  Mr. Welde of the Department of Buildings assured everyone that the building was structural sound, and that the students would be in no danger in the building that would be open. Various member of the panel tried to assure everyone that students would not be able to enter the closed off rooms to be reconstructed, and that all other entrances to the building and all stairwells would be open. Also mentioned was that any construction work would take place after school hours, and that air quality testing would take place on a regular basis.

  Some of the very few parents in attendance complained about the lack of notification process, and that the auditorium should have been overfilled with other parents, but that they were mot notified of the meeting. After hearing that the Department of Education was working with the United Federation of Teachers Union on the opening of the Kennedy Campus, one can only wonder why parents were not involved in that process. 


  Ms. Grillo of the School Construction Authority answers a question by a parent. It was also said that the 3 workers that were injured in the gas explosion are still in the hospital, and are now getting skin grafts where they were badly burned.

  Local Bronx Assemblyman expresses his concerns about the gas explosion and what has taken place afterwards to open the school. To a remark that the Kennedy Campus was underutilized by about 700 students Assemblyman Dinowitz answers back that the old JFK High School housed over 5,000 students compared to the current level of close to 4,000 students in the 7 schools that make up the Kennedy Campus.

Senator Klein and Council Speaker Mark-Viverito to eBay, Craigslist and Backpage: Kick K2 from the Internet

Klein investigation turns up online ads for K2, illegal synthetic cannabinoids and pre-branded spice bags that ship to New York

State Senator Jeff Klein, joined by City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, Assemblyman Mark Gjonaj, City Council Members Ritchie Torres, Dan Garodnick, Ruben Wills, CEO of ACI Chemical Dependency Treatment Centers Warren Zysman and Lewis Cruz, a Bronx father whose son is addicted to K2, unveiled an alarming investigative report, “The Online Smoke Shop,”detailing the cyber market for K2.

In light of this investigation, the legislators demanded that major sites, eBay, Craigslist and Backpage, remove all K2 and K2 paraphernalia from their sites, and sent letters to their CEOs on Thursday.

“I have a message for eBay, Craigslist, Backpage and other sites: It doesn’t matter if K2 is sold in the corner store or in cyberspace, you need to stop the proliferation of K2 and start policing your websites. My investigation found that the Internet is the both a virtual bodega and a chemists’ web warehouse. Disturbingly, sites not only peddle K2 — but also the materials needed to make it. On eBay my investigation even turned up pre-branded bags that we’ve seen on the streets of New York as ‘jewelry bags.’ Selling drug paraphernalia is against the company’s policy and I expect eBay and other sites to stop aiding dealers,” said State Senator Jeff Klein.

“This investigation clearly highlights that access to K2 is just as easy to get by just a click of a button,” said City Council Speaker Mark-Viverito. “Synthetic marijuana is a dangerous, unpredictable and illegal substance, and for too long, unscrupulous stores and online marketplaces have profited by peddling these deadly drugs to New Yorkers. I’m proud of the work the City has done, at the urging of the Council, to aggressively tackle this issue and I thank State Senator Jeff Klein for his work on this report. I look forward to working collaboratively with our state legislators to put an end to this widespread problem.”  

“The Online Smoke Shop: Buying K2 Online,” found a budding market for K2 and its paraphernalia on Internet classified and auction sites like eBay, Craigslist and Backpage, where direct dealers are posting ads geared toward New Yorkers.

On Craigslist and Backpage, sellers posted classifieds using keywords like, “K2 Spice,” “herbal incense,” “herbal potpourri,” and “legal weed.”

The postings discovered on Craigslist and Backpage lured consumers to direct dealer sites, where the same K2 found in New York shops is available for purchase online. Direct dealer sites sell the product to individuals and in bulk and ship in discreet packaging, the investigation found.

On Backpage, one dealer brazenly posted a cellphone number to text for synthetic marijuana.

Direct dealer sites found in the investigation peddled a vast array of K2, including popular brands like, “Geeked Up,” “Smacked!” “Scooby Snax,” and “Bizarro.” The sites popped up on major search engines like Google, Bing, Yahoo! Search and when users entered terms like, “Buy K2 Spice,” “Buy herbal incense,” and “Buy synthetic marijuana.”

Dealers on these sites claimed their product was legal, but did not list ingredients.

Disturbingly, on eBay a search for “incense bags,” yielded sellers of pre-branded, Mylar K2 packaging seen on the streets of New York. In one listing, 1,000 empty, pre-branded, “Geeked Up,” bags sold for $119.95. The posting claimed the bags — labeled 4 grams and potpourri — was for the storage of “coins, jewelry, crafts and incense.”

Worse, the investigation discovered online cannabinoid dealers selling toxic ingredients sprayed on plant matter to make K2 — even ones that were recently banned in New York State. Most of the online chemical peddlers operate outside of the United States, but are willing to ship illegal chemicals to New York.

“The growing popularity and availability of K2 is alarming and disturbing. The administrators of these online forums where K2 is so easily accessible must take proactive steps to combat this hazardous epidemic and protect its consumers.  The fact that this substance is being marketed to especially appeal to a younger generation is a disgrace. These online forums must take responsibility for what is being sold on their platforms, and should take into consideration the safety and well being of their patrons above all else. Buying and selling a dangerous and toxic substance in simple online transactions is unacceptable,” said Assemblyman Gjonaj.

“K2 poses serious health risks and has already taken an alarming toll on our communities, yet as Senator Klein’s report shows, remains easily purchased online. These are dangerous drugs that should be fully prohibited from all forms of retail, period. I applaud Senator Klein and the Speaker for their leadership on this issue and together, we will take every measure to halt all sales of synthetic marijuana,” said Council Member Torres.
Senator Klein has introduced legislation to criminalize the sale of synthetic marijuana. A seller caught with over 16 ounces could face up to 5 ½ years imprisonment if his bill passes. He also proposed cracking down on businesses by stiffening penalties in New York State’s business law. A business found selling one time would receive a $2,000 fine. On the second offense, that penalty would increase to $5,000. On the third strike, a business would lose its cigarette, alcohol and State lottery licenses.

Senator Klein also would add an analog statute to the state’s controlled substances law, making any analog of a Controlled 1 or 2 substance illegal. While the State Senate has passed this measure three times, the State Assembly has failed to take action.

Wednesday, September 2, 2015


  Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr., Council Member Andrew Cohen, Assembly Member Jeffrey Dinowitz, Bronx Community Board #8 and the Bronx Overall Economic Development Corporation issued a joint report examining the Kingsbridge/Broadway retail corridor, running along Broadway between West 230th Street and West 238th Street, including connecting side streets, in the northwest Bronx.

This well-known commercial corridor has seen two new retail shopping centers open at each end in recent months, and is slated for more retail, commercial and residential development in the near future. Given this activity, this group sought to identify issues affecting the corridor and put forth recommendations, which they believe will help maintain the area’s status as a vibrant, active and relevant shopping corridor for both local residents and those beyond.

Those recommendations include a renewed focus on graffiti removal, standardized street furniture and sanitation receptacles, increased lighting and the creation of new parks and public interaction spaces, among others.

The complete report on the Kingsbridge/Broadway business district can be read at

“With two major new developments opening along Broadway in recent months, this shopping corridor is seeing increased traffic from not just Bronx shoppers, but travelers from northern Manhattan and Westchester, as well,” said Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. “Our recommendations will go a long way towards keeping Kingsbridge an attractive place to visit, shop and eat for local residents, while also ensuring that potential customers from all over the region will feel welcome here, shop in our local stores, and become repeat customers.”

“I am very excited to see that the Kingsbridge shopping corridor has had an increase in traffic since the grand opening of two major developments along Broadway. The report my colleagues and I have constructed reflects our dedication to ensuring that the Kingsbridge business district continues to be a destination for not only local shoppers, but for our neighbors outside the northwest Bronx as well.  These recommendations, particularly, removing graffiti, removing old parking meters to repurpose the space for bike racks and sidewalk repair throughout the corridor, will keep the Kingsbridge corridor thriving and maintain the community’s status as an active and vibrant neighborhood ,” said Council Member Andrew Cohen

"Having lived in the Northwest Bronx for most of my life, I have seen the Broadway corridor during some of its best and its worst times. It is exciting to see the amazing renaissance that has taken place along Broadway in recent years. New developments, including the construction of two new shopping malls, bring a new vitality to this corridor. There is so much more potential for growth along Broadway, but it must be done in a smart and coordinated fashion. While I have no doubt that Broadway’s rebirth and revitalization will continue, we need to do everything we can to make common-sense improvements along the corridor. This includes better lighting, more seating areas, pedestrian- and bike-friendly pathways, improved parking, graffiti removal and better sanitation. I am confident that all of us working as a team will have a tremendously positive impact on Broadway," said Assembly Member Jeffrey Dinowitz.

“The opening of the two new shopping centers along Broadway continues to attract new businesses and customers from around the City. Common sense measures such as better lighting and the removal of non-functional parking meters will greatly enhance the experience of residents and visitors and will go hand in hand with the revitalization process that this area is currently undergoing," said State Senator Gustavo Rivera. "These recommendations will go a long way in strengthening the development of the Northwest Bronx.”

"Retail in Kingsbridge is thriving. I applaud my colleagues, Community Board #8 and the Bronx Overall Economic Development Corporation for outlining a vision to maintain this vital shopping corridor that's seen two new major retail developments blossom. I'm also proud to partner with the BOEDC on the Bronx Revolving Loan Fund which allows businesses, big and small, to borrow up to $50,000 to make capital improvements to their ventures. This is a great way, especially for mom and pop shops looking to revitalize their stores, to get a loan and take part in this Kingsbridge Renaissance," said State Senator Jeff Klein.

“Kingsbridge is one of the most significant shopping districts in The Bronx, and this report puts forward several common sense improvements that can make this area more attractive to shoppers. I look forward to working with my fellow board members, elected officials and businesses together to make this shopping district an even better place to visit, and to take advantage of the new traffic this neighborhood will see as a result of these two new shopping centers,” said Dan Padernacht, Chairman, Community Board #8.


   Members of Bronx Community Board 12 (CB 12), elected officials, friends and family members will gathered Saturday, September 12 at 11 a.m. at the corner of East 229th Street and White Plains Road, Bronx, to rename the intersection “Carmen Rosa Way” in memory of the longtime district manager of CB 12.

Council Member Andy King will officiate the ceremony and present a City Council Proclamation to the family.

Carmen L. Rosa, a first generation New Yorker and longtime resident of the Bronx, had provided more than 20 years stellar service and contributions to Community Board 12. In 1995, after serving seven years as Community Board 12’s Assistant District Manager, Ms. Rosa became District Manager. From the start, she has applied an unparalleled level of expertise, dedication, leadership skills to improving the quality of life for Community Board 12 residents and for the Bronx as a whole.

During Ms. Rosa’s tenure as District Manager of Community Board 12, she played an instrumental role in getting the toxic site known as Hexagon Labs cleaned by the Federal and State Department of Environmental Protection, ensuring the contaminates contained at the site would no longer endanger residents.

In her role as District Manager for the second largest populated district in the borough of the Bronx, Ms. Rosa responded to the needs of young people and submitted a proposal to the Mayor, which identified a potential site for an all-inclusive recreational facility.

Ms. Rosa’s work with the Bronx Overall Economic Development Corporation, the South Bronx Economic Development Corporation and the White Plains Road merchants association culminated in a revitalization program with local industrial merchants, developing a vital economic engine in the 12th District.

In addition to her tireless work with Community Board 12, Ms. Rosa was a devoted mother of two children, Linda A. Angueira and Alfredo M. Angueira, as well as an Adjunct Professor at Monroe College. She truly excelled in all of her endeavors and earned the enduring gratitude of all New Yorkers.

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Aguila's Back-To-School Backpack Giveaway

   State Senator Reverend Ruben Diaz joined with Aguila' Inc. Director, Ms. Jenny Rivera and police officers from the 43rd Precinct to give backpacks filled with school supplies to the 100 families who live in the homeless shelter located at 1056 Boynton Avenue (between Bruckner Blvd and Watson Avenues) in Bronx County. A few photos are below.

Above - Backpacks filled with school supplies are piled high waiting to be given to the children.
Below - State Senator Ruben Diaz Sr. is with Aguila Inc. Director Ms. Jenny Rivera.

Above - Senator Diaz Sr. and Ms. Rivera are joined by the rest of the staff of Aguila Inc. here.
Below - There was a face painter 'Silly Cindy' for the children. 

Aguila, Inc. is a Bronx based non-profit organization that provides transitional housing for homeless families throughout the New York Metropolitan Area. 

Friends of Van Cortlandt Park's September 2015 Enewsletter

Summer is quickly coming to an end but we are looking forward to enjoying the fall in Van Cortlandt Park.

Eleven young people just finished up working for our SummerFOTB9DD 2 2015
Teen Trails Crew.  These interns maintained nearly 5 miles of trail while also partnering with a boyscout troop to build up a section of the John Muir Trail that runs alongside Mosholu Avenue. The interns also took a trip to Clarence Fahnestock Memorial State Park in Putnam County to work with the NY- NJ Trail Conference (pictured). Head out on the trails in VCP to see their great work.
We have lots of great events planned for the fall including Canoeing with Wilderness Inquiry on October 24th and two fun fundraisers planned in September-  Otis Matthews Fall Start 10Kand a Paint Nite event at Kelly Ryans.   Check out the list below and visit our website for a full listing of upcoming events.

Hope to see you in the Park!

Christina and all of your Friends at the Friends of VCP


Otis Matthews Fall Start 10K
Monday September 7th starting at 9am
The Friends will join the Van Cortlandt Track Club for this 10k race. Kids activities include a 1 mile run and Eco-Crafts. Proceeds will go towards trail maintenance. Registration is now open!  

Art in the Park Adventures
Saturdays September 12th, 19th and 26th at
11am and 1:30pm (sessions are just under 2 hours)
Your little Picasso will create their own original art and expand their skills in a wide variety of methods and materials during this art class series. Children, ages 6 to 12, can attend as many or as few sessions as they would like. Meet at Woodlawn Playground- just south of VCP East and Kepler Avenue.

Get Active Hiking Series
 Saturday SEPTEMBER 12th at 10am
Join us for a Wetlands Tour in VCP.  Please wear appropriate shoes and bring plenty of water and a snack for the hike.  Meet at 242nd and Broadway near the last stop of the 1 train.

Paint Nite Fundraiser
 Thursday September 17th starting at 7pm
In just about two hours, a performing artist will guide you through a painting so that you come up with your own unique masterpiece that you will be amazed YOU created. Everything you will need is provided: canvas, paints, brushes and even a smock. All proceeds will go towards future art programs in Van Cortlandt Park.  Event will be held at Kelly Ryan’s at 5790 Mosholu Ave.  Tickets must be purchased in advance.

Fall Kickoff Forest Volunteer Event 
Saturday September 26th meeting at 10am
Join us as we start our fall volunteer season with projects on the East and West Sides of the Park. Projects include shrub and tree plantings and invasive plant removal (both sides) and hillside beautification projects near Healy Field on the east side. Meet at the Nature Center- enter the Park at Broadway and W. 246th St. –OR- Meet at Van Cortlandt Park East and Kepler Ave.

“Back to School Clean Up Event”

    The Bronx Chamber of Commerce is proud to announce its Back to School Clean Up Event on the Allerton Avenue Commercial Strip. 
   On Wednesday, September 2nd at 10:00AM, the day will begin at The Sanz (815 Allerton Avenue, Bronx, NY 10467).  There will be many exciting activities for the students participating.  Children will receive a free breakfast, school bags, school supplies, haircut coupons, and more.  Many federal, state, and city officials will be on hand along with the leadership of The Allerton Avenue International Merchants Association. Merchants and local residents will be participating in this neighborhood beautification project. 

Bronx Chamber of Commerce

Back to School Clean-Up Event

WednesdaySeptember 2, 2015 at 10:00AM 

The Sanz 815 Allerton Avenue, 
Corner Boston Road.

Monday, August 31, 2015



"Not only does this study confirm that children will pick a healthier meal that is accompanied by toy when given the option, but it also highlights the nutritional shortfalls of the fast food our children are consuming. This scientific study highlights how the "Healthy Happy Meal" bill proposed by Councilmember Kallos has the potential to make these fast food meals that are targeted to kids healthier. 

One of my legislative priorities in the State Senate has been to set statewide nutritional standards for meals that are accompanied by a toy. I commend and thank New York University for conducting this study, which will support our efforts to pass legislation in both the city and state that aims to set standards that will encourage our children to make healthy food choices without any misguided influence."

Editor's Note: I wonder just how many 'Happy Meals' Senator Rivera has eaten, and have they made him the person he is today? 

New York Comic Con 2015

NYCC - New York Comic Con - A New York Super Week Event

October 8 - 11, 2015 | Javits Center
Finn JonesNatalie DormerKeisha Castle Hughes

ABC Family Comes to NYCC Pretty Little Liars Shadowhunters Stitchers
Show Floor Hours
Thursday: 10:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Friday: 10:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Saturday: 10:00 AM - 7:00 PM
Sunday: 10:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Panel Hours
Thursday: 10:30 AM - 10:00 PM
Friday: 10:30 AM - 10:00 PM
Saturday: 10:30 AM - 10:00 PM
Sunday: 10:30 AM - 5:00 PM