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Bronx Neighborhoods & Bronx News

Jun 27, 2008 at 07:11 pm by mikewood


bronx neighborhoods bronx news history bronx neighborhoods mott haven melrose concourse neighborhoods fordham bedford park belmont norwood neighborhoods riverdale kingsbridge spuyten duyvil neighborhoods westerchester square city island parkchester morris park soundview coop city pelham bay throgs neck neighborhoods port morris crotona west farms neighborhoods bronx

bronx neighborhoods bronx news mott haven melrose longwood fordham concourse highbridge university heights norwwod belmont bedford park riverdale city island parkchester morris heights throgs neck coop city bronx buzz nyc


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Bronx - Free Summer Outdoor Theater 2022

Free Things To Do in the Bronx - Free Summer Theater Park in NYC

bronx things to do free summer theater bronx nycAugust 12, 2022 / Bronx Neighborhoods / Dance & Theater / Theatre Bronx / Bronx Things To Do / Bronx Buzz NYC.

Summer is in full swing. A number of community groups in collaboration with the NYC Parks Department and frequently some measure of government funding, have put together a summer full of free summer theater in the parks. The free theatre events listed below are designed for young and old alike and they're FREE.

 

Editor's Note - Note that only ASTERISKED LOCATIONS have been updated. Pay attention to the performance dates / years. We will be updating / adding this summer theater report between now and the end of September. So check back periodically for updates which you can note by the date changing above.

 

Some summer theater programs in the Bronx have been curtailed or cancelled, many in part due to the ongoing CoVid threat. We'll continue to update / add to this schedule of free theater in the park in the Bronx, as we become aware of additional productions.


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Jeff Klein's IDC: Republicans Running as Dems?

The Independent Democratic Caucus Aligns with Republicans which Enables Republicans to Control the NYS Senate

Updated September 7, 2018 / March 21, 2018 / Bronx Neighborhoods & Bronx News / Bronx Politics / News Analysis & Opinion / Bronx Buzz NYC.

IDC independent democratic caucus NOIDCNY no independent democratic caucus bronx brooklyn manhattan queensThere's an NYS State primary election this month. The primaries will be held on Thursday, September 13th; instead of on Tuesday, September 11th, in recognition of 911. And the general election will be held on Tuesday, November 6th.

As in any year, the elections are important, but perhaps made more so this year, by what appears to be the anarchistic destruction and disrespect, for our government institutions and processes, by Republican President Donald Trump.

Trump Republicans: Debt Bomb Deficits Levied on America's Children to Enrich the Richest?

The Donald passed a stimulus tax bill that is expected to increases the deficit by $1.5 trillion over the next ten years, and there are some pundits who put the figure higher. He and the Republicans passed this budget busting stimulus tax bill, while the economy was operating at levels considered above a full employment economy [5% unemployment is considered standard / normal] and at a time when wages were rising over 2%.

Inflation above 2% is considered to be detrimental to economic stability by the Federal Reserve, so stimulating the economy while it's at full employment with rising wages is about the opposite of what makes sense, especially when you consider the funding for it is coming from America's children and most of the benefits for it are going to the wealthiest people on the planet. We posted a report analyzing the Trump Tax Reform Bill slightly before it was finalized, which includes a lot of facts and figures to help provide context to better understand what was in the bill they passed.

The Independent Democratic Caucus Aligns with NYS Senate Republicans & Gives Them Control

In 2010 / 2011 NYS Senator Jeffrey Klein broke away from the Democratic Party and formed the Independent Democratic Caucus which aligns with the Republican Party, thereby giving them control of the NYS Senate. The effect of this is that bills passed by the Democratic controlled NYS Assembly are indefinitely tabled, or in lay man's terms pretty much killed, in the Republican-controlled NYS Senate. The Republicans control the NYS Senate, because eight NYS senators who run as Democrats [IDC Independent Democratic Caucus], either vote with or kill bills with the Republicans.

Democratic NYS Assembly Bills Effectively Killed by IDC

According to the Democratic Senate Conference, the Republican controlled NYS Senate - with the help of their Republicans running as Democrats allies - have effectively killed one education bill providing full day kindergarten funding, three wage / leave bills, four voting rights bills including the allowance of early voting, four immigration bills including one related to the DREAM Act, four housing bills including several pertaining to NYC rent laws that help renters, three criminal justice bills including creation of correctional ombudsman and sealing of marijuana possession records [as marijuana is rapidly being legalized in states across the country], one related to LGBTQ issues, and six regarding healthcare, several of which pertain to women's reproductive rights.

The IDC Deception: REPUBLICANS RUNNING AS DEMOCRATS?

The net effect of this is that Democrats are, in a sense, cheated or tricked out of their majority by what appears to be Republicans running as Democrats. The Independent Democratic Caucus or IDC includes Jeffrey Klein of the Bronx, who founded the IDC, David Valesky of Oneida and Madison Counties in upstate New York, David Carlucci of Rockland and Westchester Counties, Diane Savino of Staten Island / Brooklyn, Tony Avella of Queens, Jose Peralta of Queens, Jesse Hamilton of Brooklyn, and Marisol Alcantera of Washington Heights / Manhattan. Simcha Felder of Brooklyn also runs as a Democrat and caucuses with the Republicans.

The following is a list of challengers, eight of which I obtained off the NoIDCNY.org website. For some reason Blake Morris - Simcha Felder's challenger - was not included on their website. I have just contacted them to find out why.

  • Jessica Ramos is challenging Jose Peralta in District 13 in Queens.
  • John Liu is challenging Tony Avella* in District 11 in Queens.
  • Robert Jackson is challenging Marisol Alcantera in District 31 in Washington Heights / Inwood / Manhattan.
  • Alessandra Biaggi is challenging Jeff Klein in District 34 in the Bronx.
  • Zellnor Myrie is challenging Jesse Hamilton in District 20 in Brooklyn.
  • Blake Morris is challenging Simcha Felder in District 17 in Brooklyn.
  • Jasmine Robinson is challenging Diane Savino in District 23 in Brooklyn / Staten Island.
  • Julie Goldberg is challenging David Carlucci in District 38 in nearby upstate New York.
  • Rachel May is challenging David Valesky in District 53 in upstate New York.

* A Word About NYS Senator Tony Avella as He Appears to be a Real Independent

Of all of the IDC candidates listed above, NYS Senator Tony Avella deserves special consideration. NYS Senator Avella CHALLENGED Republican Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Queens Country Democratic Party Chairman Joe Crowley when both of these men, and many in their parties, supported real estate developments in Flushing Meadows Corona Park. Queens Borough President Melinda Katz took a position that appeared somewhere between supportive of the developments to - at best - indifferent.

NYS Senator Avella advocated on behalf of the community to thwart billionaire and mega millionaire real estate developers from grabbing Queens parkland - AND WON. In doing this, NYS Senator Tony Avella, appears to be more like a Maverick or Independent, resembling legislators like deceased U.S. Senator John McCain (Republican) and U.S. Senator Bernie Sanders (Democrat), both of whom have charted their own path through party-dominated politics.

Avella is an important independent voice in the Queens, NYC and NYS community, which the Democrats in his district will have to decide whether or not to keep.


Bronx St Patrick's Day Parade in Throgs Neck

20th Annual St Patrick's Day Parade in Throgs Neck, Bronx

bronx st pats parade throgs neck st patricks day parade photos bronx st pats parade throgs neck photosMarch 12, 2018 / Throgs Neck Neighborhood / Bronx Neighborhoods / Bronx Parades / Bronx Buzz NYC.

On Sunday I made my way north into a southeastern neighborhood in the Bronx, to attend the 20th annual St Patrick's Day in Throgs Neck. It's worth mentioning that the Throgs Neck neighborhood is also known as Throggs Neck, and apparently while the double g is the correct name and only spelling of the bridge [Throggs Neck Bridge], the Throgs Neck neighborhood uses both spellings.

It was a chilly Sunday morning, following the switch to Daylight Savings Time, so I began the day running a bit behind schedule, made worse by repair work being done along the #7 subway line in Queens.

The photo to your right shows folks milling along East Tremont where there's an Throgs Neck St Patrick's Day Parade after parade party.

 

Public Transit Between Flushing Queens & Throgs Neck Bronx

bronx st pats parade throgs neck st patricks day parade photos bronx st pats parade throgs neck photosIn the downtown section of the Flushing neighborhood of Queens I had planned to take the 44 SBS bus, but was [wrongly] advised to wait for the Q50. The Q50 came far less frequently, but it did get me there. That said, it's worth noting that the 44 SBS would have been faster, because four of them passed me while I was waiting for the Q50.

 

I departed the bus just off the Hutchison River Parkway at Lafayette Street and started walking east passing St Raymond's Cemetery. St. Raymond's Cemetery is one of the largest cemeteries in the city and associated with St. Raymond's Schools [one for Boys and another for girls] in Parkchester. Click here to see an earlier report we did regarding St. Raymond's Schools in nearby Parkchester, which is only a neighborhood [Schuylerville] away.

 

The Irish in the Throgs Neck Neighborhood of the Bronx

throgs neck neighborhood photos east bronx neighborhoodsI continued along Lafayette to East Tremont Avenue where the parade had started. The parade had begun at 12 noon, and I arrived about 1 pm because of a late start and transit delays and, unfortunately, I had mostly missed the parade.

In the photo at right stands a mobile stage just south of Harding Avenue on East Tremont Avenue.

Undeterred, I began walking south following the parade route along East Tremont Avenue, snapping a few photos of the Throgs Neck commercial district along the way. Just south of the Cross Bronx Expressway there was a large tent set up in a parking lot which was a center of what looked to be ongoing festivities. And along East Tremont heading south of the tent, East Tremont Avenue had been closed off to allow celebrants safe passage across the street, where a number of local Throgs Neck restaurants and bars were filled with St Patrick's Day partiers.

 

St Patrick's Day Parade in Throgs Neck Bronx

bronx st pats parade throgs neck st patricks day parade photos bronx st pats parade throgs neck photosThe mood was naturally generally celebratory. There was Irish music emanating from a couple of the bars and fairly sizeable crowds of parade attendees milling about outside of them. Quite a number of people had dressed up, or at the least were wearing some green, and it seemed that while all were not Irish descendants, today they were Irish in spirit [see photo at right].

The parade route was little more than about a mile long, and just south of Harding Avenue, at East Tremont Avenue, there stood a mobile stage which at this point was empty [see photo above right]. Apparently the crowd had been treated to some entertainment and speeches by local pols and musicians, prior to my arrival.

Generally the Throgs Neck neighborhood of the Bronx seems to be a quiet, residential, working class neighborhood that appears to have a large Irish population, but there were also a few folks representing other ethnicities as well.

It's worth mentioning that President Kennedy was of Irish descent and that he sacrificed his life, as did other Americans like Martin Luther King, defending the human rights for all embedded in the United States Constitution. I mention this, because seeing people of all backgrounds come together to share in each others' cultural celebrations strengthens the bonds of our humanity and of our nation.

And this seems particularly important today, as hostile foreign powers appear to be trying to exploit some of our historical fissures, in attempts to weaken us, even as we lead the planet in evolving and uniting the world into one planetary people.

 

Throgs Neck Neighborhood: Quiet, Residential & Near Water

bronx st pats parade throgs neck st patricks day parade photos bronx st pats parade throgs neck photosI spent some time looking around the Throgs Neck neighborhood before departing. I found a fallen tree being removed along one street, and a local boat marina at the southern end of the neighborhood at Locust Point.

In the photo at right you can see a tree being removed at Lawton Avenue near Throgs Neck Blvd in the Throgs Neck neighborhood of the Bronx. There's what looked to be a nice car lying underneath the fallen tree. The Throgs Neck neighborhood of the Bronx is surrounded by the water on its southern and eastern sides.

There's also an MTA run service center for the Throggs Neck Bridge at the foot of the Throggs Neck Bridge on the Bronx side, and a beautiful view of the Throggs Neck Bridge from the houses and apartment buildings that have been erected along the Hammond Creek shoreline.

 

Throgs Neck Neighborhood is Near the Throggs Neck Bridge

bronx throgs neck neighborhood photos

The photo at right shows the Throgs Neck Bridge as seen looking south / east from the southern tip of the Throgs Neck neighborhood, just east of the marina at Locust Point.

On my way back to the bus stop I took a few photos of Edgewater Park which is along the water somewhere near where the Long Island Sound begins.

Next time I'll have to get an earlier start, but at least now I know how to use the public transit between northeastern Queens and southeastern Bronx.

Slainte which in Gaelic means 'good health to you'.


Ruben Diaz Delivers State of the Borough Address

Bronx Borough President Provides Holistic Overview of Borough Affairs

bronx things to do bronxFebruary 26, 2018 / Bedford Park Neighborhood Central Bronx / Bronx Politics & Government / Bronx Neighborhoods / Bronx Buzz NYC.

I attended Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz's State of the Borough Address last Thursday at the Bronx Science High School in the Bronx neighborhood of Bedford Park.

There was a reception that began at 10.30 am and the speech was scheduled to begin at 11.30 am. I arrived a bit after Bronx President Ruben Diaz began his speech.

Diaz began by talking about how much things had improved since he became Bronx Borough President. Crime is down, as homicides have dropped below 100 for the fifth straight year, and he told us that this year was the lowest year on record. He told us that employment is up, that the Bronx has a 5.5% unemployment rate and that 110,000 new jobs have been added since he took office as the Bronx Borough President in 2009. Diaz said that school graduation rates are up, and drop outs are down, but that the Bronx still has the lowest math and reading scores in the city. He went on to say that many high school graduates are unprepared for the future.

The Bronx Borough President noted that there is still far more to do. And it was about what needs to be done, that he spoke about at his 9th State of the Borough Address.

Public Education in the Bronx & NYC is Underfunded

Regarding education, he told us that NYC schools continue to be underfunded. He allocated $20 million last year to technology and auditorium upgrades, and has allocated $60 million on 400 schools since he took office eight years ago. He said that over 50% of NYC schools are overcrowded, and that 60% of elementary and middle school kids were in overcrowded classes last year. He said he would like to see the Department of Education [aka DOE] cap classes at 22 students.

Are Schools in the Bronx & Ethnic Communities Underperforming?

Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz said that he has been working with Brooklyn Borough President Eric Adams to address what he termed an uneven playing field for Blacks and Latinos. He said that while Blacks and Latinos represented 44% of those taking the Specialized High School Admissions tests, they only received 10% of the offers.

It's worth noting that this skew is possibly the result of using the test scores to place students. But even if so - it still illustrates the problem of unequal opportunity. And lower test scores by Blacks and Latinos, may be due to underperforming schools in their neighborhoods, which represents a more deeply embedded educational opportunity inequality.

Linking CUNY Graduates to NYC Department Hiring?

Diaz suggested that incentive programs be created that create direct links between the New York City government and qualified CUNY school system graduates. He suggested that CUNY Lehman College nursing and healthcare graduates should be given consideration in the NYC Health & Hospitals Corporation, that CUNY Baruch business majors be given consideration in the NYC Economic Development Corporation, and that CUNY City College architecture and engineering graduates be given consideration in the NYC Department of Housing Preservation and Development.

He also suggested tax credits and contract preferences be given to companies that hire recent CUNY graduates.

One has to ask whether it's not in NYC's best interest to hire the best qualified candidates, regardless of from where they come. But that said, it's also an interesting idea, that in some controlled measure, seems worth exploring.

Expansion of Bronx Affordable Housing Units

Bronx Boro President Diaz went on to tell us that 21,000 new affordable housing units have been created. He said neighborhoods have been rezoned to create more functional and inviting neighborhoods, while trying to mitigate the displacement of current residents.

Bronx President Diaz said that his office directly funded 8,000 new affordable housing units by investing $52 million since he took office. This past year he told us, he invested $7 million in private developments to create 1,500 new affordable units. Some of the housing was allocated to the victims of domestic violence, some to the homeless and some to LGBT seniors.

He is also trying to obtain a "right to counsel" for victims facing evictions. In the Bronx neighborhoods where this has been implemented, there's been a 15% drop in evictions.

Jerome Avenue Rezoning - Bronx Neighborhoods of Belmont, Bedford Park & Norwood

The Jerome Avenue rezoning negotiations resulted in strong tenant protection programs, including a Certificate of No Harrassment pilot program, whereby landlords must prove they do not harass their tenants in order to obtain a permit to make significant alterations to their buildings. Additionally, Bronx President Ruben Diaz, identified 2,000 units of affordable housing that need to be preserved and rehabbed, as part of the Jerome Avenue rezoning. Diaz commended the Bronx Coalition for a Community Vision for their work on this rezoning plan.

Sheridan Expressway - Bronx Neighborhood of Hunts Point

He noted that the Sheridan Expressway was in the process of being converted into a boulevard, so that it will be safer for pedestrians and cyclists.

NYCHA

Healthcare

Crime

Puerto Rico

To Be Continued / Rest of this coming later in March.


Cigars Made the Old Fashioned Way

February 19, 2018 / Belmont Neighborhood Bronx / Bronx Shops & Shopping / Bronx Buzz NYC.

bronx cigar shops bronx cigar makers handmade cigars in bronx belmont nycA while back I was strolling through Bronx Little Italy on Arthur Avenue. I spent a bit of time inside the Arthur Avenue Retail Market which was founded back in the 1930's by one of NYC's most famous Mayors, Italian American Fiorello LaGuardia. The market was an effort by the former Mayor to clean up Arthur Avenue as many vendors sold their goods out in the open air on the street.

Inside the old-fashioned, indoor market there are a dozen or more vendors selling food and other items. The vendor that caught my interest on this particular voyage, was the cigar maker busily toling away, rolling his fresh tobacco products on a table near the front of the market.

LCD Cigars bills itself as the original cigar of Arthur Avenue. The cigar maker comes from Latin America and has many years of experience making fine cigars. I bought a couple to bring home and enjoyed the smooth draw of the fresh rolled man-sized cigars.

I misplaced my notes of that voyage, but in addition to the rolling table where he makes cigars, he operates a small store which sells a selection of cigars and accessories, like cases to protect the cigars while traveling - one of which I purchased to ensure the cigars would make it safely home. You can find him in the Arthur Avenue Retail Market or buy from him online at LCDCigars.com.


1482

Bronx Holiday Markets, Shopping & Bronx Holiday Events Bx NYC

Bronx Holiday Shopping, Bronx Christmas Markets, Bronx Hanukkah Shopping, Bronx Kwanzaa Markets & Bronx Holiday Markets & Events

bronx holiday markets bronx holiday things to do events bronx holiday markets bronx nycDecember 17, 2021 / Bronx Neighborhoods / Bronx Holiday Events / Bronx Events & Things To Do / Bronx Shops & Shopping / Bronx Buzz NYC.

HYBRID.

 

*** For links to holiday events and markets in all five boroughs of NYC scroll down to the bottom of this report.

 

EDITOR NOTE. While it seems we've turned the corner on the CoVid pandemic, it's after effects still linger. Hence a number of holiday markets we saw in 2019 may not yet return in 2021 for reasons related to CoVid, or possibly finances, or perhaps an assessment that the rewards of a holiday market at this time aren't worth the risks of operating one. Lastly, shopkeepers / market makers still have to operate knowing there remains some uncertainty in being able to obtain the selection goods you want in the time frame you want because of lingering issues associated with the supply chain. So while they may not return this year, they might make a comeback next year.

 

Bronx Holiday Lights, Christmas Tree Lightings, Hanukkah Menorah Lightings, Kwanzaa Candle Lightings Background

The holidays are a special time of the year. In ancient times there were harvest celebrations to give thanks and enjoy the bounty of the year after a long season / year of work.

There were also winter solstice celebrations to commemorate the end of the darkening of the skies. Many cultures celebrate with a festival of lights, and in Christian cultures the holidays are marked with holiday lighting, tree lightings, candle lightings - as well as the celebration of giving through the most well known and most generous man in the world - Santa Claus.

The photo at right shows the Christmas tree at the three corners plaza at Third Avenue, 149th Street and Willis / Melrose Avenue in the Mott Haven and Melrose neighborhoods.

Meanwhile, back in the Bronx we celebrate in a number of ways, which carry on some of these ancient traditions. The following provides the dates / times / locales and some details regarding many of the various Bronx holiday markets for folks to enjoy shopping between now and the end of the year.

Click here to read our report about Bronx Holiday Markets / Bronx Holiday Events & Things To Do NYC.


NYC Mayoral Debates Fall 2017

Dietl Effervesces, Malliotakis Attacks & de Blasio Defends

nyc mayoral debates october 2017 nyc debatesOctober 15, 2017 / Upper West Side Neighborhood UWS / Queens Politics NYC / News Analysis & Opinion / Gotham Buzz NYC.

I attended the Mayoral Debate at Symphony Space on Tuesday, October 10th, where former NYC Detective [1970 - 1985] and security firm businessman Bo Dietl [Independent], New York State Assemblywoman Nicole Malliotakis [Republican Staten Island] and Mayor Bill de Blasio [Democrat] squared off for one of two general election debates. The debates are sponsored by the New York Campaign Finance Board and are a requirement for those candidates who receive matching funds.

 

NYC Mayoral Debates - Opening Statements

Each candidate came out and made opening statements. Bo Dietl talked about his time working the streets as a policeman in the 1970's and 1980's and how since then he has run a successful security firm that also employs minorities. He described his two opponents as Column A and Column B candidates.

nyc mayoral debates october 2017 nyc debates malliotakis dietl de blasio nyc mayoral debates 2017Nicole Malliotakis told us how she is the first member of her family to obtain a college degree and a Masters of Business Administration and that she is the 'American Dream'. She went on to say she would fix our schools, transit system and homelessness.

Bill de Blasio said that his two opponents were both right wing Republicans and that he was the only one that would stand up to Trump. He went on to say that crime is down, test scores at NYC public schools are up, but that there's more to do and he needs New Yorkers' help to continue making progress.

There was a small, but very boisterous minority of rude and disruptive people in the audience, who began their noisy tirades with the opening statements. It wasn't until near the end of the program - that one of [several of] the loudest shouters and screamers was finally escorted out.

Click here for a fairly full recount of the NYC Mayoral Debates with Malliotakis, Dietl & de Blasio.


1467

Yankee Stadium History: Concourse Neighborhood Bronx

A Bronx Institution Since 1923 was Rebuilt in 2009 with Taxpayer Funds on Public Parkland

October 8, 2017 /South Bronx Neighborhoods - Concourse / Bronx History / Bronx Things to do / Bronx Parks & Sports / Bronx Buzz NYC.

yankee stadium history concourse neighborhood bronxIn 1901 the New York Yankees baseball team originated in Baltimore as the Orioles [no relation to present day team]. In 1903, they were purchased by casino man Frank J. Devery and former police chief William S. Farrell, and moved to New York, where they were renamed the Highlanders, because of a Scottish reference and because they played in Hilltop Park which is in present day Washington Heights. Today Hilltop Park is occupied by New York Presbyterian / Columbia University Medical Center at 165th Street and Broadway.

The New York Giants baseball team had reportedly tried to keep the Highlanders out of New York, by disallowing them the use of the Manhattan Polo Grounds as a venue. The Manhattan Polo Grounds was located in East Harlem at 112th Street west of 5th Avenue [and just north of Central Park], and it is where the New York Giants baseball team played.

In 1911 the Manhattan Polo Grounds burned down, and for a time, the NY Giants used Hilltop Park. While the Manhattan Polo Grounds was being rebuilt, relations between the two teams warmed. So, in 1913 the Highlanders baseball team started playing at the Manhattan Polo Grounds where the team was again renamed- this time as the New York Yankees .

The New York Yankees shared the Manhattan Polo Grounds Stadium with the New York Giants baseball team until the opening season of 1923, when they moved into their new stadium.

Click here to read our report about the history of Yankee Stadium in the Concourse neighborhood of the Bronx.


1469

History of the Bronx Zoo in New York City

The Bronx Zoo is one of the Best City Zoos on the Planet

September 27, 2017 / Central Bronx Neighborhoods - Belmont / Bronx History / Bronx Things to do / Bronx Buzz NYC.

bronx zoo entrance photo bronx history of bronx zoo norwood fordham belmont bronx nycThe Bronx Zoo is, as the headline says, one of the best zoos in the world. It offers visitors a day of amazing discoveries and safe exploration of natural wild life. The Bronx Zoo stands on 250 acres of land that is cut through by the Bronx River. Inside are tall trees, a wide array of bird species, wild jungle animals shown in habitats resembling their origin, polar mammals, gorillas, snaky reptiles and as Dorothy of the Wizard of Oz would say, "Lions and tigers and bears ... Oh my!"

The Bronx Zoo is open from 10 am to 5 pm daily. They offer kids rides, a shuttle and select participation in the feedings. There are several public feedings scheduled daily including feeding the Sea Lions at 11 am and 3 pm, with the Penguins being fed at 3.30 pm. In addition they offer an assortment of programs for classes for school aged children and other groups.

The Bronx Zoo also offers a '4-D' theater where you can see real wildlife, a seasonal Asian monorail that takes you through a replicated Asian wildlife refuge, and seasonal camel rides. These are in addition to the feedings mentioned above.

There are four main entrances to the Bronx Zoo. The first is Gate A or the Asia Gate [Bug Carousel} located along the west side of the Bronx Zoo along toward Southern Blvd at about 183rd Street. The second is Gate B, is located off Boston Road, which you get to by heading south on Bronx Park East off the Pelham Parkway. This entrance is located along the east side of the zoo in the Pelham Parkway neighborhood. And the third is Gate C, which is located at the north end of the zoo - and home to the famous gates - along East Fordham Road between Southern Blvd between Bronx Park East. There's a fourth gate which is located off the parking area adjacent to the Gate B entrance, located on the south east area of the park.

The Bronx Zoo opened in 1899, a year after the City of New York allotted 250 acres to the New York Zoological Society to develop a zoo, to preserve native animals and promote an interest in Zoology. The Bronx Zoo opened as the New York Zoological Park.

A former Smithsonian employee who was a conservationist, zoologist, taxidermist and author, namely William Temple Hornaday, was signed on as the Director of the Bronx Zoo where he remained for the next 30 years. Hornaday was driven by the desire to build a world class zoological institution and by all accounts today, he appears to have succeeded.

Click here to read the rest of our report about the Bronx Zoo - things to do in the Bronx.


1466

Mott Haven: Historic District & SummerStage in St Mary's Park

Large Audience Gathers to Enjoy Communal Music Feast

August 14, 2017 / Bronx Neighborhoods - Mott Haven / Bronx History / Bronx Live Music / Bronx Buzz NYC.

On Sunday, July 30th, I attended the SummerStage concert in St Mary's Park in the Mott Haven neighborhood of the Bronx. The stage was set in the western side of the park, which opened up onto a large field, but also gave the advantage of providing 'balcony seats' where one could enj oy the concert watching and listening from the hills.

SummerStage Concerts Bronx: St Mary's Park Mott Haven

summer stage st marys park mott haven neighborhood bronx things to do bronx nycThe SummerStage concert in St Mary's Park featured Lisa / Lisa who hit the national scene in 1985, in the year before she turned 20. The Hells Kitchen native and her 1980's group - Lisa Lisa and Cult Jam - took the hit single 'I Wonder if I Take You Home', to #1 on the Billboard Hot Club Dance Play chart for a week in June of 1985.

Lisa / Lisa is of Puerto Rican descent and was born and raised in Hells Kitchen in Manhattan. Lisa / Lisa was one of the wave of freestyle musicians to help usher in dance pop. In 1982 Michael Jackson released his best selling dance album Thriller which rose to become the world's best selling album - a title which I believe it still holds to this day. In 1984 - just two years later - teenager Lisa / Lisa and her Cult Jam band released 'I Wonder if I Take You Home', which as mentioned above, rose to number 1 atop Billboard Magazine's dance pop charts.

Lisa / Lisa shared the stage in concert where she had a male and female dancer who artistically interpreted her magical music while we in the audience moved to the rhythms. In the photo above right, Pop Dance Hip Hop musician Lisa / Lisa with one of the dancers at the SummerStage concert in St Mary's Park in the Mott Haven neighborhood of the Bronx.

The weather was a warm but dry 80 degrees as the sun was making its way west and we were sheltered by the St Mary's Park foliage. While most folks in attendance were adults there were also a number of families with children.

Mott Haven Historic District: Bronx

After the concert I made my way down past the Mott Haven Historic District to the #6 subway at 138th Street and Third Avenue. The Mott Haven Historic District is rather small, running along Alexander Avenue between 138th Street and 141st Street. The buildings date back to the mott haven bronx neighborhoods mott haven neighborhood south bronxlast half of the 19th century, when people were moving to the Bronx because rail transportation was enabling more easy movement of people and goods. Alexander Avenue is believed to have been named after Alexander Bathgate who was the Morris land holdings manager.

The photo at right shows some of the houses from the 19th century that still exist in the Mott Haven neighborhood of the Bronx.

The Morrises bought the land in the south Bronx in 1670 from Jonas Bronck, a Swedish immigrant and one of the original Bronx settlers and after whom the Bronx is named. Bronck in 1641, less than thirty years earlier, bought theland from the Dutch West India Company, which had purchased the lands from the Indians in 1639.

The Bronx neighborhood in which Alexander Avenue resides, is called Mott Haven, and was named after Jordan Mott. Mott was the inventor of the coal burning stove. In 1828 Mott opened up the first manufacturing facility in the Bronx, his ironworks. Today Mott Ironworks manhole covers are reportedly still in use today.

Also nearby is St Mary's Park where the SummerStage concert took place, as well as St Ann's Church, which is an Episcopalian Church where two generations of Lewis Morris are buried, as well as Gouverneur Morris. They are members of one of the founding families of the Bronx, second only to Jonas Bronck himself.

The Bronx SummerStage concert series is organized and sponsored by SummerStage and City Parks Foundation in tandem with the NYC Parks Department. SummerStage organizes several free concerts in Bronx each summer, including two concerts in Crotona Park in the Central Bronx.

Click here to view our story about the Mott Haven Historic District in the Bronx.


1472

History of the Edgar Allen Poe Cottage in the Bronx

House Edgar Allan Poe Spent his Last Couple Years

bronx things to do bronxAugust 16, 2017 / Bronx Neighborhoods - Fordham / Bronx Things to do / Bronx History / Bronx Buzz NYC.

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The Poe Cottage was erected in 1812. The small clapboard house is located in Poe Park where the Grand Concourse intersects with Kingsbridge Road in the Fordham neighborhood of the Bronx. The NY Parks Department, which in collaboration with the Bronx County Historical Society, runs the registered historic site - notes that it was a simple farmhouse built for laborers.

Edgar Allan Poe resided here during the last three years of his life. According to the NY Parks Department, the house was moved to its current location from where it had originally stood on Kingsbridge Road [about 450 feet south - near Valentine Avenue] when Poe lived in it.

Poe died in 1849 of causes unconfirmed as according to Wikipedia, his death certificate has been lost. There's a plaque in Boston denoting approximately where he was born, and a monument in Baltimore where he died and was buried. There's also an Edgar Allan Poe Museum in Richmond, Virginia - an area around which the author spent the majority of the formative years of his short life.

One of Poe's most famous works was The Raven, a poem published in 1845, less than a year before Poe moved into Poe Cottage. The Raven depicts a man struggling with a lost love, where Poe flexes his literary skills with cultural references and cadenced structure.

Another of Poe's most famous works, The Cask of Amontillado, was published in late 1846, after Poe had moved into the Bronx house. And The Bells, Poe's last poem, was written in 1849, the year of Poe's death. It is believed that the sound of the St. Johns College [Fordham University] Church bells could be heard at Poe Cottage after the church was built in 1845, and that the church bells were, in part, some of the inspiration for the poem. The Bronx County Historical Society website notes these two seminal works were penned in the bucolic setting of the Fordham neighborhood in the mid 19th century in the Bronx.

According to the Museum Register, it took a while for the City to take control of the place as an historical site. In 1902 it opened Poe Park and in 1913 it moved the Poe House to its current site. This year the weekend of October 14th and 15th, you can visit the Poe Cottage free as it is a participant in Open House New York, which is an historic site weekend.

Click here to read the rest of our story about Poe Cottage Museum in the Bronx.


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Fordham University Rose Hill Campus in the Bronx

Fordham University Serves Approximately 15,000 Students

October 10, 2017 / Bronx Neighborhoods - Fordham / Bronx History / Bronx Colleges Universities Schools / Bronx Buzz NYC.

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fordham university bronx history of fordham university in the bronxDuring my travels in the Bronx in the spring and summer of 2017 I could not help, but make a visit to Fordham University. According to Wikipedia Fordham University was originally founded as St. Johns College in 1841 and changed its name to Fordham University in 1907. Just a couple of years earlier, in 1904, they had begun both a graduate medical school and a graduate law school.

Wikipedia reports that Fordham University is the third oldest university in New York, and the oldest Catholic college / university in the northeast section of the United States. In 1969 the Board of Trustees was reorganized to include a majority of non clerical members, thus officially making Fordham University an independent institution.

Historically, Fordham has been known as a Jesuit school. The Fordham University website notes that their Rose Hill campus is comprised of 85 acres and that their ten schools - including the college, law school, medical school, business school, education & others] serves nearly 16,000 students. Of the total Fordham University student body, over 9,000 of the Fordham University students attend the college. As for locations, nearly 8,000 students attend Fordham University in the Bronx at their Rose Hill campus, while over 7,000 attend Fordham University at their Lincoln Center location. Fordham University also has a small outlet in Westchester County that serves about 500 students.

Fordham is a highly regarded school. According to U.S. News Fordham University is #60 in the ranking of 1600 colleges and universities in the U.S. That puts it in the top 4%, with high school counselors ranking them #42 and with their business program ranked #77. This kind of education doesn't come cheap as U.S. News noted that tuition and fees are pegged at $47,000 and room and board is estimated at $16,000.

Click here to read the rest of our report on the history of Fordham University in the Bronx neighborhood of Fordham and Belmont.


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History of the New York Botanical Gardens in the Bronx

One of NYC's Finest Attractions Resides in Bronx Northern Neighborhoods

August 17, 2017 / Bronx Neighborhoods - Bedford Park & Norwood / Bronx Things to do / Bronx History / Bronx Buzz NYC.

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ny botanical gardens bronx things to do bronxThe New York Botanical Gardens are located in the Bronx. While New York City has Botanical Gardens in three of its other boroughs [Queens, Brooklyn & Staten Island], only one - its best - bears the metropolitan city name. The botanical gardens in the other boroughs are competitive in their own right, but the New York Botanical Gardens in the Bronx is like few botanical gardens in the entire world.

Notable within the New York Botanical Gardens walls lie 50 acres of primordial landscape, largely kept intact from colonial and pre-colonial times. This tract of open landscape was once occupied by the Lenape Indians and is called the Thain Family Forest, named after the family that financed the preservation and enhancement of the forest, which has suffered many ravages since its inception.

The ravages to the primordial forest were first addressed in 1904 less than a decade after the site was dedicated to the NY Botanical Gardens. According to an NYT report the original footpaths led to the destruction of the hemlock grove, as the footpaths destroyed the shallow roots. In 1926 new hemlocks were planted, but in 1986 most of the hemlocks were destroyed when a hurricane blew in Asia beetles which destroyed most of the hemlocks that were left.

Also around 1904 a blight destroyed all but two of the original 1,500 chestnut trees. And Dutch elm disease wreaked havoc with the primordial forest elms. There were a number of other such intrusions, so the primordial forest is now a mix of old and new. A research paper provided by the NY Botanical Gardens outlined the work being done to mitigate aggressive intrusions into the forest over the past half decade or so.

Click here to read the rest of our report on the New York Botanical Gardens near the Bronx neighborhoods of Belmont, Bedford Park, Norwood and Fordham.


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Bronx - Free Summer Concerts 2022

Free Things To Do In the Bronx - Free Summer Concerts in NYC

bronx free things to do mott haven st marys park free things to do south bronx free summer concerts in the bronx nyc August 12, 2022 / Bronx Neighborhoods / Music & Free Concerts in the Bronx / Bronx Things To Do / Bronx Buzz NYC.

 

Editor's Note - Note that only ASTERISKED LOCATIONS have been updated. Pay attention to the concert dates / years. We will be updating / adding a few more concerts between now and the end of September. So check back periodically for updates which you can note by the date changing above.

 

Summer is in full swing. A number of community groups in collaboration with the NYC Parks Department and frequently some measure of government funding, have put together a summer full of films and free summer concerts in the parks. The free concerts listed below are designed for young and old alike and they're FREE.

 

  • Free Things To Do in the Bronx

  • Current Bronx Things To Do. Click here to view a listing of current Bronx things to do.
  • Bronx - Free Concerts in the Park


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Bronx - Free Summer Movies in the Bronx 2022

Free Things To Do in the Bronx - Free Summer Movies in the Park in Bx NYC

August 12, 2022 / Bronx Neighborhoods / Dance & Theater / Theatre Bronx / Bronx Things To Do / Bronx Buzz NYC.

bronx free summer movies bronx morris park van cortlandt pelham bay coop city parkchester free summer movies things to do melrose mott haven fordham norwood belmont free summer movie bronx nycSummer is in full swing. A number of community groups in collaboration with the NYC Parks Department and frequently some measure of government funding, have put together a summer full of free summer theater in the parks. The free theatre events listed below are designed for young and old alike and they're FREE.

Editor's Note - Note that only ASTERISKED LOCATIONS have been updated. Pay attention to the movies dates / years. We will be updating / adding a few more movies between now and the end of September. So check back periodically for updates which you can note by the date changing above.

 

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  • Free Things To Do in the Bronx

  • Current Bronx Things To Do. Click here to view a listing of current Bronx things to do.

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Bronx Farmers Markets 2022

April 19, 2022 / Bronx Neighborhoods / Bronx Shops & Shopping / Bronx Buzz NYC.

See HOURS, MAPS, ITEMS / SELECTION of the 23 BEST Farmers Markets / Green Markets in Bronx, w/ savvy shoppers' tips. This report includes the Mott Haven Farmers Market, Concourse Green Market, Coop City Farmers Market, Fordham Manor Green Market, Parkchester Farmers Market, City Island Farmers Market, Hunts Point Farmers Market, Claremont Village farmers markets and in between.

Click here for dates, times, locations of the Bronx Farmers Markets.