Well, all sorts of Ray-related news to pass along. First, a bombshell from Scoopy's column this week in The Villager:
An associate of Barbara Chupa, the property’s managing agent, told him they want to replace his historic candy store with — get this! — a "noodle shop." "They told me they have a Chinese guy who can pay more money, and he will hire me as the night manager and keep me working here," Ray revealed. Asked if he would even consider the "offer," he said he's not falling for it: "No! They would get rid of me right away."
Second, as we wrote last Friday, some volunteers from the neighborhood were starting a Saturday night delivery service. I was one of the homebound Ray's fans eager for a delivery. Unfortunately, there were some snafus with their phone service. They're try again this Saturday. Bob Arihood has more on this story here.
Third, on the Save Ray's page on Facebook, Haley Moss Dillon reported that a single person made a $300 donation on the Save Ray's PayPal account, which is still active: firstname.lastname@example.org
[Photo of Ray's by Joann Jovinelly via her Flickr account]
Fourth, Francisco Valera, who has lived upstairs from Ray's for 17 years, is helping organize a benfit for Ray at the Theater for the New City, 155 First Ave., on Monday, March 8. As Valera wrote on Facebook:
"Some incredible local artists have volunteered to perform, among them Reverend Billy and the Live After Shopping Gospel Choir, East River String Band, Didi from Brazilian Girls will be our DJ and will play live music ... we are still reaching out to more artists ... Ray himself will be with us ... and some local activists and loyal members of our, in extinction, beloved East Village neighborhood.