Showing posts with label The Villager. Show all posts
Showing posts with label The Villager. Show all posts

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Special supplement in this week's issue of The Villager?

Seventh Street and Avenue A... and we've always been been fans of the paper, which has been publishing community news since 1933...

Friday, November 5, 2010

Photo of the week

I love this shot that appears in The East Villager this week by J.B. Nicholas. The caption: "Rosario Dawson, standing next to Speaker Sheldon Silver, couldn’t restrain her enthusiasm at the groundbreaking for the new Lower Eastside Girls Club headquarters."

I was trying to think of a funny headline for it, but, well, ended up with Photo of the Week. D-

Friday, September 3, 2010

Marlene, 1988

Clayton Patterson's photo page, in which he publishes work from his vast archives, is my favorite feature of the newly launched Villager spinoff, The East Villager.

This week, Patterson presents this photo of Marlene Bailey in Tompkins Square Park from 1988. You may know her better as "Hot Dog."

“I think it’s great to see her looking like that,” Patterson said in the feature. “I think it’s a good example of the difficulties and hard life of living on the street. She’s a neighborhood icon to some — a reprobate to others. I think she’s one of the last of the real survivors out there on the street — one of the street warriors.”

Here's a more recent photo of Marlene (with Poet John Lesko) from Bob Arihood's excellent new photo site, Nadie Se Canoce.

Friday, July 23, 2010

New look, name for 'The Villager'

Per the paper's editorial this week:

You might have noticed something different about the newspaper you are holding in your hands. For starters, it has a different name on the front page — and that name is in “eco green,” not blue.

Starting this week, East Villagers and Lower East Siders who have enjoyed reading The Villager over the years now have a paper they can call their own. It’s called the East Villager and Lower East Sider, and it will offer the best of what The Villager brings — but with an increased focus on Downtown’s vibrant East Side

In addition, each week, the paper will feature a page of Clayton Patterson's vast LES archives.

If you don't pick up a hard copy around the neighbor, then you can check out their new website.... and new digital flipbook.

Congrats to Lincoln Anderson and his crew... as always, I look forward to reading the paper each week...

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Man charged in death of puppy

Awful item in this week's Police Blotter in The Villager:

An East Village man, 30, was walking his new puppy in Tompkins Square Park at E. Seventh St. and Avenue A around 6:15 p.m. Fri., June 18, when a suspect kicked the animal and stomped on its head, police said. The owner took the 4-month-old puppy to an animal hospital where it was declared dead. Witnesses called police who arrested John Lendino, 52, of Brooklyn, and charged him with aggravated animal cruelty. Lendino was freed pending a Sept. 8 court appearance.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Report: L.E.S. Jewels sentenced to 10 days in jail (Updated: Or not)

Back in April, Bob Arihood reported that Joel Pakela, a.k.a., L.E.S Jewels, had been arrested and charged for assault... and resisting arrest. This week's issue of The Villager reports that Jewels was sentenced to 10 days in jail on June 1.

Update: According to the Department of Correction website, L.E.S. Jewels is scheduled for release on Oct. 20. He is currently in the Eric M. Taylor Center (EMTC) at Rikers.

[Photo via Slum Goddess]

Thursday, May 20, 2010

What's doing at the Economakis dream mansion on East Third Street?

Scoopy has an update this week in The Villager.

Take it away Scoopy....:

Lower East Side activist Susan Howard told us that a friend of hers who lives near 47 E. Third St. — the East Village "mass eviction" building — hasn't seen evidence of any work going on there for a while and thinks construction has ground to a halt.

Howard urged us to call Alistair and find out what’s up. "Work is progressing..." He said he doesn’t have a specific completion date for when the building will be ready for them to live in as their luxurious, single-family mansion. He said he and his family recently moved out of the place, and are temporarily living in Brooklyn until the job is done. "It came time we had to move out of there," he said of 47 E. Third St. "Our bedroom's gone — it was relocated to a different spot. The steps are being relocated. It was much simpler to just open everything up and build everything at once." Economakis said all the building’s windows are boarded up on the inside, not because no work is going on, but to protect the windows while work is going on.

[EV Grieve file photo]

Previously on EV Grieve:
And Economakis gets the whole building for his dream mansion

The 47 E. 3rd St. protest in video

At the 47 E. 3rd St. protest

Conspiracies: Where are all the fliers?

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Here comes NYU's superblocks

Lincoln Anderson has an in-depth piece in this week's issue of The Villager on NYU's expansion plans. To the story we go!:

After New York University’s NYU 2031 expansion plan was recently leaked — by an unknown source — to two local newspapers, one of the newspapers’ articles, and most of the subsequent media reports, focused on the university’s relatively far-off hopes to develop up to 1 million square feet of facilities on Governors Island. The Governors Island angle was admittedly the “sexy” urban planning story.

However, missing in the hyped-up coverage was the fact that N.Y.U. plans to start immediately on its expansion plans for its two South Village superblocks, part of its strategy of adding 1.5 million to 2 million square feet of space in its Washington Square-area campus “core.”

Read the whole article here.

And about that leak!

Friday, April 2, 2010

Anti-NYU letter of the week

From the new issue of The Villager:

Party out of bounds

To The Editor:
And now N.Y.U. states that it plans to expand by 40 percent. Obviously, most of that will have to be in the East Village, since there’s not much space left for their grand ambitions in the Village.

Why does N.Y.U. have to be bigger? What’s the point? So we can choke on their destructiveness to the local population?

God forbid they should get any part of Governors Island; do we have to kick out Bloomberg immediately to make sure that doesn’t happen? The people, the residents that is, need Governors Island for recreation! Those students can go to the Rockies or Europe or wherever they like for their time off.

The view of the Judson Church tower has been ruined by the ugly military-style dorms atop a “law school” for which N.Y.U. tore down the Poe House and allowed Washington Square to be overshadowed. East Village, watch out for buildings around Tompkins Square — soon your sun too will be overshadowed by N.Y.U. high-rises!

It’s a party school and that’s a big part of what residents have against this planned expansion. We in the East Village have seen blood on the sidewalk and students screaming at cops that their fathers are big shots. They’re here to drink themselves numb.
Martin Delarue

Thursday, January 28, 2010

The “East Village version of ‘It’s a Wonderful Life’”

From Lincoln Anderson's cover story in this week's issue of The Villager:

In what some are calling the “East Village version of ‘It’s a Wonderful Life,’” customers and friends of Ray Alvarez — the two are really one and the same — have pitched in to help him start paying off his back rent, giving him and his store another lease on life.

Previously on EV Grieve:
More Details on Day of Ray

Friday, January 22, 2010

Send me an angel

Thanks to Scoopy for the mention this week in The Villager... and for passing this along...

Ray needs an angel:
A local blog reader, on EV Grieve, we believe (hey, that rhymes), might have come up with the best hope — well, maybe it’s more like a prayer — for saving Ray’s Candy Store, at Seventh St. and Avenue A, from eviction. Sure, a fundraiser to pay Ray Alvarez’s last two months rent would be great, but what about going forward? Goggla posted: “Maybe the mysterious donor who stepped in and saved St. Brigid’s will extend their generosity to another neighborhood landmark. If the $8K is raised to save Ray, what about the next month, and the one after that?” In May 2008, the Catholic Archdiocese announced it had accepted an anonymous $20 million donation to restore St. Brigid’s Church and save it from demolition. More recently, an anonymous donor gave the ABC No Rio arts collective $1 million. Could Ray be next?

Thursday, January 14, 2010

A Villager editorial: "Save our Ray's"

From an editorial in this week's issue of The Villager titled "Save our Ray's"...

There has been a lot of talk in the neighborhood in recent years about preserving local mom-and-pop businesses, and keeping out the big chain stores. Ray’s Candy Store is a perfect example of a local business that truly offers a unique, authentic experience, from its old-style soda fountain to Ray himself and the cast of quirky characters and locals who patronize his place.

Until his recent cash-flow problems, Ray has paid his rent faithfully for more than three decades — so one could say, he’s paid his dues. His place used to be one of the only businesses open on Avenue A at night, when taxis wouldn’t even dare come that far east. He slept in his store to protect it from burglars. He’s been slashed and slammed with everything from jagged fluorescent bulbs to metal sidewalk vault doors, and survived.

Also in The Villager this week: A Ray's recap from Chris Flash. Read it here.

Meanwhile, as noted Tuesday....

A PayPal account has been established to help Ray's Candy Store. Those who are interested in helping out may use this e-mail address:

And Bob Arihood has the latest update at Neither More Nor Less:

Ray claims that he met with his landlord and that the landlord was not very sympathetic . According to Ray the landlord has too many tenants not paying rent these days and that he expects Ray to pay his rent So it seems there will be no grace period for Ray and his candy store and thus the future is ever so uncertain .

Behind the landlord ultimatum at Ray's

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Happy ending for The Villager box

We recently noted that some drunken hooligans someone moved The Villager box from the west to east side of Avenue B at Eighth Street. Or perhaps it was that mighty wind from that weekend...?

Well, we went back over there to see what became of the box... turns out it was moved across Eighth to a new, perhaps, safer location...

Sunday, January 3, 2010

A mighty wind

Winds were gusting up to 50 mph over night, at least according to my friends at the Weather Channel.

Still, however gusty, that probably doesn't explain how this Villager box moved from the west to east side of Avenue B near Eighth Street during the night...

Friday, November 13, 2009

Saving what remains of the neighborhood

Community activist Susan Howard has a column in this week's issue of The Villager. It begins:

What is a neighborhood? A place where you feel a sense of belonging as you walk down the streets? Where you know your neighbors and local shopkeepers? Where your children go to school? Where you play, garden or just shoot the breeze? Where you can sit on the stoop, in the park or in a neighborhood hangout and listen to music, gossip and lore?

That’s the way I remember the Lower East Side, before all our vacant land was sold for the development of luxury housing in an 80/20 scheme. Before it was marketed to the white upwardly mobile as a cool place to live. Before the speculators arrived to scoop up the existing buildings to turn them into luxury rentals and condos, and before many of our squats and gardens were bulldozed for more of the same. Before the largest tract of land, once promised for artists, low-income housing and community facilities, was sold in another 80/20 scheme for the development of a luxury community, Avalon Christie, before the high-rises, hotels, high-end eateries and boutiques.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Lower East Side vs. the East Village

The Villager revisits the topic this week. So, if you live within the geographical boundaries of 14th Street to Houston, Fourth Avenue/Bowery to the East River, then is it the Lower East Side or the East Village? Opinions vary! Tempers flare!

Among the people weighing in on LES vs. EV is Andrew Berman, executive director of the Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation:

“I think the East Village does have a clear identity separate from the broader Lower East Side, but it clearly also has an identity as part of it, as well,” stated Berman. “It seems that of late there has been a revival of that thinking, and I find many people, especially neighborhood activists, are seeking to rejoin the East Village to the broader Lower East Side and re-identify with it. Interestingly, this may reflect the fact that today the East Village and the Lower East Side in many ways share more in common than they have since the 1960s when the ‘East Village’ identity was first created and the blocks north of Houston St. began to develop a distinct ‘bohemian’ character.”

Both areas are struggling equally with issues of overdevelopment, large-scale gentrification and the difficulty of longtime residents and businesses being able to afford to stay here.

“Not only are they once again very similar in character,” Berman said of the two areas, “but I think in many ways they are seeking to hearken back to the days before the big high-rises, frat bars and exorbitant rents swept over the neighborhood — and the name ‘Lower East Side,’ which is less associated with the gentrification process than ‘East Village,’ may be one way of doing that.”

Friday, October 9, 2009

About Angelina Jolie's 'semi-crusty phase' in Tompkins Square Park

As Scoopy writes in this week's issue of The Villager:

We were surprised to learn, recently, ... that none other than Angelina Jolie also went through her own semi-crusty phase, hanging out in the park and smoking pot ... During the L.E.S. Slacktivists/veterans' "adoptathon" outside Christodora House last month, Lara Mascara ... told us how she used to run with the young Jolie. "We were friends of the band Sick of It All," she said. "We called ourselves the Alleyway Crew." The members each had a Sick of It All dragon tattoo. "Angelina Jolie was skinny, no figure — just straight, she had no boobs — hair in her eyes," but did sport her trademark big lips even back then, Mascara recalled. "Her dad didn't pay child support. ... She was just not going to high school, like all of us. She was known as Angie."

[Top photo via; Bottom photo via]

Friday, October 2, 2009

Inside the Economakis dream mansion on East Third Street

In this week's issue of The Villager, Scoopy gets a tour of the renovations at 47 E. Third St., where the Economakis family is making their 11,600-square-foot dream home from the former 15-unit tenement.

To some excerpts!

Except for the areas that the family is still using, the place has been completely gutted in the past month — with just the floors, the stairs and the building’s brick shell remaining. The old roof is still on, but will be replaced soon. With peppy enthusiasm, Catherine Economakis led the tour, first showing us her “dream kitchen” she had installed on the second floor, complete with a fully stocked stainless steel refrigerator, adjacent to their combination living room/dining room. Moving into the freshly gutted areas — where nothing at all is left of the former apartments — Catherine showed where they will blast through a wall to create a new doorway so that she won’t have to make the “50-yard dash,” as she put it, between the kitchen and the new dining room proper — that is, once they build the dining room in the rear of the building where one of the tenant’s apartments used to be.


The Economakises also proudly note they have even restored the building’s cornice, which had been removed, and have cleaned and pointed the old tenement’s front brickwork. Catherine stated they intend to live there their whole lives. Alistair, saying one can never know what the future holds, assured they’ll stay there at least 10 years — if not 20 years, and yes, maybe even forever.

Previously on EV Grieve:
Report: Alistair Economakis is suing his cousin Evel for libel

And Economakis gets the whole building for his dream mansion

The 47 E. 3rd St. protest in video

At the 47 E. 3rd St. protest

Conspiracies: Where are all the fliers?

Friday, August 28, 2009

Not to kick a Bald Man when he's down, but...

Epic takedown in The Villager this week... Been awhile since we've read an article and yelled yes...YES...YES!!!

Here's some of what Dottie Wilson had to write:

Though I never once dined at the famous “Chocolate by the Bald Man” corporation, this place gave me indigestion, headaches even. While nearby mom-and-pop establishments struggled to stay afloat, Max Brenner was constantly packed, mostly with tourists. These people would come all the way to the East Village — just to eat at a chain restaurant. I didn’t get it.

And with childhood diabetes on the rise, as well as obesity, I thought “society” was supposed to be eating more sensibly. But not at this joint. Struggling with menus the size of a hefty coffee-table book, its carefree patrons were devotees of a restaurant defined by indulgence, i.e., dessert for breakfast, lunch and dinner and drinks. In this land of “sugar on fat, on top of sugar on fat” (read “The End of Overeating” by David Al Kessler), this was an altogether obscene environment.

The restaurant’s outdoor tables, usually loaded with out-of-towners, took up an unusually large portion of sidewalk, and this annoying protrusion provoked many a resident on his or her way to and from the Astor Place or Eighth St. subways. On Friday and Saturday nights, human gridlock was the norm.

Consequently, I guess, a crazy person from a nearby apartment building started to get sick and tired of the music from the place’s outdoor speakers. He hated getting woken up every morning and night by the loud, clanking metal chains and padlocks that were used to prevent the theft of their ugly tables and chairs. Employees from the restaurant who took their breaks at the entrance of his building — smoking and laughing it up till all hours, and accidentally buzzing his apartment by leaning on the intercom buttons — drove him nuts.


Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Looking at 11 Essex Street

The current issue of The Villager has a lengthy piece on 11 Essex Street, a tenement built in 1907.

Landlord didn’t make fixes at Essex St. building; Now displaced tenants are feeling the squeeze

By Julie Shapiro

At the center of an affordable housing battle in Chinatown is a crumbling five-story building that is tilting slowly but steadily into the street.

Across from Seward Park, 11 Essex St.’s top story leans out 9 inches over the ground floor. Inside, metal poles prop up caving-in ceilings. Out back, bricks have tumbled from the facade, leaving gaping holes behind.
It’s a time bomb,” said Richie Acca, a construction supervisor, as he walked through the silent, dusty building on a recent afternoon. “Would you live here?”

The city agreed. On May 27, the Department of Buildings issued a full-vacate order, giving the rent-protected tenants just a few hours to pack up their apartments before the front door was locked behind them.

In some ways, the vacate was the end of a years-long battle between the Chinese tenants and Sion Misrahi, the building’s owner. In other ways, the battle was just beginning.

The article inspired me to check out the building this past weekend.

An unclaimed UPS package awaits one of the tenants.

Here's more from the article:

When Misrahi bought 11 Essex St. in 2001, the 22 apartments were mostly occupied by low-income Chinese families who had lived there for decades. Until the vacate order, some still paid less than $300 per month for the rent-protected units, in a neighborhood where market rate is now more than five times that much.

One year after Misrahi bought the building, construction by another developer on new condos at 7 Essex St. destabilized 11 Essex’s foundation. Cracks formed and walls shifted. Even after workers from 7 Essex installed bracing at 11 Essex, the 100-year-old structure continued to deteriorate.

In 2004, Misrahi launched a campaign to get the city to vacate 11 Essex St. He wrote to the Department of Buildings, saying 11 Essex was in imminent danger of collapsing and that the city needed to remove the tenants so he could fix the building.

A city engineer told Misrahi that he could make the necessary repairs without tossing out the tenants, and ordered him to do so. Misrahi appealed first to then-Buildings Commissioner Patricia Lancaster, and then to the Board of Standards and Appeals. A panel of architects and engineers heard the case and agreed with D.O.B. that Misrahi could — and should — fix the building immediately.