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The cast of Godspell performs “We Beseech Thee.” Photos/John Vecchiolla

The word of God with an edge

The cast of Godspell performs “We Beseech Thee.” Photos/John Vecchiolla

The cast of Godspell performs “We Beseech Thee.” Photos/John Vecchiolla

By Michelle Jacoby
“Godspell” has been spreading the word of God through rock music set to lyrics from hymns and psalms for more than 30 years. 

John Fanelli has returned to the Westchester Broadway Theatre and has previously directed “Peter Pan,” “Big River,” “Seussical” and “Ragtime” with Standing Ovation Studios. Fanelli, along with associate director Jonathan Stahl produce this high-energy show with a talented 10-person cast.

The story focuses on the last days of Jesus, played superbly by Gilbert D. Sanchez. Sanchez exhibits a natural calmness and goodness that you would expect if you were to meet our Savior. His attire of a Superman tank top, suspenders and red Converse make him relatable to believers and the audience.

Xander Chauncey as John the Baptist and Judas provided the controversial scenes with Sanchez. The basis of the show is teaching the Bible through parables with the actors dressing and behaving like clowns. The important messages of kindness, tolerance and love are expressed through humor and vaudeville-type antics.

The fun isn’t just for the actors. The variety of music is upbeat and catchy, and the audience joins in by clapping and singing to some of the favorites: “Prepare Ye the Way of the Lord,” “Day by Day,” “All for the Best,” “All Good Gifts” and “By My Side.” Stephen Schwartz, composer and alumnus of Carnegie Mellon’s theater department, was hired by producers to write a new song score for the off-Broadway version of “Godspell.” Schwartz incorporated a variety of musical styles, from pop to folk rock, gospel and vaudeville.

The success of the musical numbers is based on the talented actors’ ability to pull it all together; this cast does just that. Each member sings a passionate solo while keeping a light, fun atmosphere that expresses a true camaraderie. Members of the ensemble are Josh Kenney, Kareema Castro Khouri, Greta Kleckner, Nicholas Park, Devon Perry, Nathan Andrew Riley, Corinne Scott, Sarah Smithton and Karley Willocks.

The cast performs “Prepare Ye.”

The cast performs “Prepare Ye.”

To keep the show current, the stage is set in a city with a working subway system that arrives on time. Politically correct jokes and a mention or two about the upcoming presidential election keep the audience on their toes. Bible verses, great music, singing and dancing—“Godspell” provides it all.

Musical direction by William Stanley; Steven Loftus, scenic designer; Matthew He-mesath, costume designer; Vic-
tor Lukas, production stage manager; and Andrew Gmoser provided the dramatic finale with his lighting design.

This Bill Stutler and Bob Funking production of “Godspell” is playing now through Thursday, Aug. 9 at the Westchester Broadway Theatre. For more information call 592-2222 or visit broadwaytheatre.com.

Havana Jeans fill the street in downtown Rye on July 23. Photos/Bobby Begun

Sunny skies for a sidewalk sale

The weather always is a factor in any sidewalk sale. And on July 23, 24 and 25, the weather more than cooperated in Rye for the annual Sidewalk Sale on Purchase Street.

Vendors lined the sidewalks displaying items for sale and showcasing their merchandise to eager patrons. The event was sponsored by the Rye Chamber of Commerce and included items up to 75 percent off.

-Rye City Review staff

Bass guitarist Caesar Monitto from the Just Nuts Band.

Nardone kicks off Harrison street concerts

Dennis “Dion” Nardone bro-ught the Harrison crowd out
for the town’s first of three street concerts.

As part of the Harrison Summer Concert Series, three events were scheduled to take place in the streets of Harrison. The first one kicked off on Wednesday, July 22 in front of large crowd camped out downtown on Harrison and Halstead avenues. Alongside Nardone was the Just Nuts Band, who played a mix of doo-wop and disco for the evening crowd. The next street concert is scheduled to take place on July 29 when Jackie Dimaggio and Christopher Macchio on First Street and Halstead Avenue.

-Harrison Review staff

Bucci-1

Column: Why Rye needs to rein in future costs

I am a big fan of our city’s employees. During my time on the council, I have witnessed firsthand the dedication, expertise and effort that the staff in every department brings to their jobs, helping to make our city run. However, there is one benefit City of Rye employees receive that is likely to eventually imperil the city’s finances if it is not brought under control.

Historically, the city has paid 100 percent of the premiums associated with healthcare benefits upon retirement for qualified employees. It’s a contracted benefit and it varies by group. For the police and fire departments, a minimum of 20 years of service is required, with no minimum retirement age. For other groups, individuals must be 55 upon retirement, with five years vested in the New York state retirement system, and required years of service to the city varies by department—DPW and clerical is 10 years while the Administrative Pay Group is zero years.

In its first step to address this growing issue, the city’s most recent contracts with the Administrative Pay Group and the clerical unit call for new employees to contribute a portion of their retirement healthcare premium. I think it is important to continue to make similar changes for future employees of the city. Here’s why:

In 2014, the City of Rye paid $1.7 million in retirement healthcare costs. This represents 5 percent of our 2014 operating revenue, excluding the enterprise funds (golf club and boat basin). Forecasting what these costs will be in future years is difficult because it involves numerous assumptions, including rates of increase in healthcare costs, employee retirement ages and life expectancy. Given rising healthcare costs and increased longevity, I think it is reasonable to assume that without changes, the city cost of retirement healthcare premiums will far outpace our tax cap. Assuming a 5 percent annual increase in retirement healthcare costs, and a 1 percent increase in revenue over the next 10 years, the annual cost of retirement healthcare will eat up an ever-greater share of the city’s revenues.

Approximately one-third of the city’s revenue comes from sources other than property taxes (discretionary revenue). Much of it is interest rate dependent and, therefore, variable. Mortgage tax, building permit and sales tax revenue are all likely to decline as interest rates rise.

Essentially, the city’s future finances are likely to involve a rising cost structure, flat to slightly increasing property tax levy and declining “discretionary” revenue.

In 2014, the city recorded a retirement healthcare liability of $78 million, up 18 percent from $66 million in 2013. This increase was driven largely by an increase in expected longevity. This liability represents the current value of the estimated future payments for retiree healthcare.  This is an unfunded liability, which means that the city has reserved no money to pay for expected future expenses. We pay each year’s retirement healthcare benefits out of operating revenue, and we are not alone—most municipalities carry similar unfunded liabilities. Since 2008, the earliest year for which numbers are available, our unfunded liability has grown an average of 7 percent annually.

To put the $78 million in perspective, Rye collects roughly $22 million in property taxes each year. If we were to shut down City Hall and all of its services—no trash collection, road repair, etc.—and somehow continue to collect property taxes, it would take us 3.5 years to fully fund this liability.

I’m not advocating for setting aside current revenues to fund this future liability, but I am suggesting that we begin to think about reducing the city’s commitment to financing 100 percent of retirement healthcare costs for future employees.

Even if imposed starting today, the impact of this change wouldn’t be felt for roughly two decades. Continuation of the status quo will allow retirement healthcare to consume an ever-increasing portion of our operating budget, and there may come a point when our options will become even less palatable: large property tax increases above the tax cap, reductions in services and/or utilizing contractors rather than employees. This is an issue that requires long-term advance planning to head off significant future problems.

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What’s going on in Mamaroneck

Mamaroneck Public Library

Book sale

In the book sale room, lower level. On Saturday, Aug. 1, all day from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Everything is 50 percent off. To volunteer at the book sale, contact John Hofstetter at 698-4789.

All Ages Hour

Come in every Saturday at 11 a.m. for stories that will appeal to kids of all ages and their caregivers. Stay or come at 11:30 a.m. to do a craft simple enough for the little kids and creative enough for the big kids. No registration required for both events, and both activities meet in the Children’s Room on the second floor.

Advance Readers’ Copies Raffle

Read books before they are released. Come in and enter to win the entire basket of advance readers’ copies. Enter to win by providing us with your email address. Participants will be signed up to receive information on library programs, events and new books and movies. The drawing will be held on Monday, Aug. 10 to celebrate Book Lover’s Day. Call 698-1250 for more information.

Smash some CDs

Open to middle and high school teens. Create art using broken CDs. Part of the “Unmask!” program. Registration required as space and materials are limited. Contact the Mamaroneck Teen Library at 630-5875 for more information. On Wednesday, Aug. 5 at 4 p.m. for one hour in the Program Room on the lower level.

English conversation group

For adults. Every Wednesday from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. Meets in the Historical Society Room on the first floor. Make friends while you practice your English. Registration is suggested but not necessary. Contact the Adult Reference Desk or call 630-5887 for more information. 

Super Summer Kids Movies

“Big Hero 6” will be screened on Thursday, Aug. 6 at 3:30 p.m. in the Community Room on the lower level. Rated PG. Running time: 102 minutes.

Larchmont Public Library

Heroes Movie Matinee

“Bolt” will be screened on Wednesday, Aug. 5 at 3:30 p.m. in the Michael P. Coords Activity Room. For ages 5 and up. No registration required. Rated PG. Running time: 96 minutes.

Stranger than Fiction book group

Join us as we read and discuss the New York Times bestseller “Cod: A Biography of the Fish that Changed the World” by Mark Kurlansky. Books are available in the library beginning four weeks before the group meets. Meets on Thursday, Aug. 6 at 7 p.m.

Saturday Morning Yoga

Start your day with yoga and learn about its history, philosophy and practice. Instructor Damien Germino guides participants to understanding the poses and breathing techniques that will bring peace and beauty to relieve stress while you stretch. Appreciate how to incorporate the exercises and meditations into your daily life to make this year one of contemplation and concentration on centering yourself while finding gratitude and empathy for others. Yoga can have profound positive effects physically when it is practiced regularly and can provide a foundation for relaxation and spirituality. Saturdays, Aug. 1, 8 and 15, 9:30 a.m to 10:30 a.m. in the Village Center. No registration required, but please note you will need to bring your own yoga mat or blanket to use on the floor.

Managing chronic health conditions

Learn how to manage chronic health conditions on Thursday, Aug. 6 from 2 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the Village Center. Do you have a chronic condition or care for someone who does? Registering for these classes will empower you to better manage chronic health conditions such as high blood pressure and you’ll learn how to communicate more effectively with health care professionals. You’ll also learn health care cost savings techniques by avoiding trips to doctors and hospitals and learn to enjoy an enhanced quality of life. Classes are open to residents of Westchester County who are 55 and up. Registration is required. For information and to register, contact Rebecca Bent at 813-6263 or email rqbe@westchestergov.com.

LMCTV

Internship program

LMCTV is offering an internship program for interested and qualified students from neighboring area schools. The program includes training in field and studio television production, development of documentary video and news projects. The program provides training in Final Cut Pro, and creates promotional clips for series shows, station promos and public service announcements. Interns can learn hands-on production techniques by assisting with the production of existing shows.

‘The Local Live!’

Tune in to LMCTV’s hyper local, interactive news show Thursday nights at 7:30 p.m. on Cablevision Channel 75, Verizon Channel 36. During the show, join the discussion. Call 381-0150, email thelocallive@lmctv.org or tweet @thelocallive.

At Home on the Sound

Gentle Chair Yoga

With instructor Arlene. This one-hour gentle chair yoga class is designed specifically for the members of At Home on the Sound. No prior experience is necessary for this popular class. Come by and give it a try, then feel refreshed and renewed for the rest of the day. Fee is $10, payable to instructor. Every Monday in August at 11 a.m. Meets at United Methodist Church, 546 E. Boston Post Road, Mamaroneck.

Senior citizen programs

The Town of Mamaroneck Senior Center operates under the auspices of the Town of Mamaroneck Community Services Office. The center, located at the VFW Lodge Post 1156, 1288 Boston Post Road, is completely accessible with handicapped restroom facilities and ample parking. The center provides a wide variety of recreational, social and educational activities year round, open to seniors 55 and over.

Most activities are free or have a nominal charge. Some classes have a fee for participants. A monthly calendar of events and programs is available at the center and at townofmamaroneck.org/senior-center. The present membership fee is $35. Non-resident members may pay a higher fee for events or trips held outside the center. Identification and proof of residency is required. For membership information and a calendar of events, call activities coordinator Maria Gallagher at 834-8840.

Deadline for our What’s Going On section is every Thursday at noon. Though space is not guaranteed, we will do our best to accommodate your listing. Please send all items to news@hometwn.com.

 
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What’s going on in Eastchester

Eastchester Public Library 

Summer Reading Games

Registration is now open for Children’s Summer Reading Games. This year’s theme is “Every Hero Has a Story.” Participants are eligible to win prizes based on how many books they read this summer.

Registration for Summer Reading Games is open to all, regardless of residency or library card status. You may register in-person or online. Please note that for your child’s reading totals to count toward our end-of-summer raffles, they must visit the library and fill out their raffle tickets in person.

The library will also offer a number of activities for children participating in the reading games, including concerts, animal demonstrations and craft activities. Online pre-registration is required for these activities through the website, and begins one week before the activity at 9 a.m. Most activities are open to all; a select few are limited to Eastchester and Tuckahoe cardholders. Visit eastchesterlibrary.org for more information.

Teen Summer Reading Game

For those entering grades six and up. The theme is “UNMASK!” Registration is now open and will continue through the end of the game on Wednesday, Aug. 12. Each book you read this summer will earn you one raffle ticket for prizes, including brand new books, at the end of the summer. You will also be able to earn up to one prize a day by answering our daily trivia question at the Reference Desk. For a complete list of our teen reading events, visit eastchesterlibrary.org and click on the “Events” tab, or stop by the Reference Desk to pick up a brochure. Registration for all events is online.

Free technology lessons

If you need help accessing the library’s digital collections, call the Reference Desk at 721-8103 to make an appointment for a free one-on-one technology lesson.

Summer Mystery Club

On Wednesday, Aug. 5, the EPL Mystery Club will discuss Jim Kelly’s “Nightrise: A Philip Dryden Mystery.” Copies are now available at the Circulation Desk. The Mystery Club is open to all and new members are always welcome. Meetings begin at 2:30 p.m. For more information, call the library at 793-5055.

Tuckahoe Public Library

For the kids

Registration is required for all programs.

LEGOS in the Library: Come to the library and create a masterpiece to display. Open to ages 5 to 10. Friday, July 31 at 4 p.m.

Superhero Crafts: Make your own superhero costume this summer during the rest of this three-part craft program. Open to ages 5 to10. Tuesday, Aug. 4 at 4 p.m. Registration is required. Call 961-2121 or visit tuckahoelibrary.org.

Bronxville Women’s Club

Happy Holiday Hour

On Friday, Aug. 7 at 7 p.m., the Bronxville Women’s Club will host a preview showing of the new musical, “Happy Holiday Hour” at The Bronxville Women’s Club. The musical welcomes audience participation and is being prepared for the Norwegian Cruise Lines’ winter production. The audience will party like wacky elves as they enjoy six delicious cocktails and an uproarious holiday extravaganza.

The show features 20 beloved holiday favorites with a twist—such as “We Need A Little Cocktail” and “The 12 Drinks of Christmas.” “Holiday Happy Hour” will have guests jingling their bells and making their way under the mistletoe in this rollicking new interactive show starring an amazing cast of Broadway favorites, including Dominic Sheahan-Stahl from “Xanadu,” Matt Ban from “Rock Of Ages,” Kate Morgan Chadwick from “Grease” and Sarah Nathan from “Bring It On,” and directed by Holly-Anne Palmer of “Jersey Boys” and “700 Sundays.”

Advance reservations are strongly encouraged as seating is limited. Light fare will accompany the musical. Reservations are $10 for BWC members; $20 for non-members. Reservations may be made by calling the BWC at 337-3252 and/or mailing checks made out to the Bronxville Women’s Club, 135 Midland Ave., Bronxville, N.Y. 10708.

Blood donation opportunities

Eligible donors are encouraged to choose their day to make a difference. Donors of all blood types—especially types O negative, A negative, and B negative—are needed.

Date to donate blood:

Thursday, Aug. 13, 1 p.m. to 6 p.m., American Legion Hall, 40 Bell Road in Scarsdale.

How to donate blood:

Download the American Red Cross Blood Donor app, visit redcrossblood.org, or call 1-800-RED CROSS (733-2767) to make an appointment or for more information. All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card, driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17, 16 with parental consent in some states, weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements. For more information, visit redcross.org or on Twitter at @RedCross.

Buy a brick to help Pet Rescue

A walkway of personalized, engraved red bricks will soon lead to the front door of Pet Rescue’s new home in Harrison.

Purchase a brick and add the inscription of your choice to honor, remember or celebrate a special pet or person or to express support for Pet Rescue. Your words will create a lasting memorial that will greet visitors to Pet Rescue for years to come.

This path will be a reminder of the generosity and love for Pet Rescue’s rescues. The path will also fund upcoming renovations to Pet Rescue’s home and further their mission to save helpless animals and find them safe, loving homes.

The size and cost of bricks are:

4″x8″ brick can be inscribed with up to 3 lines/18 characters per line at $150.

8″x8″ brick can be inscribed with up to 6 lines/18 characters per line at $300.

Array of four 8″x8″ bricks can be inscribed with up to 12 lines/36 characters per line at $1,000.

Payment can be by PayPal, or you can mail a check to Pet Rescue, P.O. Box 393, Larchmont, N.Y. 10538.

Pet Rescue is a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization. Your donation is tax deductible as allowed by law. Proceeds will go to Pet Rescue’s Building Fund.

For more information on how to place an order, send an email to petrescuebricks@gmail.com or visit ny-petrescue.org.

Deadline for our What’s Going On section is every Thursday at noon. Though space is not guaranteed, we will do our best to accommodate your listing. Please send all items to news@hometwn.com.

 
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What’s going on in Harrison

The Harrison Public Library will be closed for renovations and is scheduled to reopen on Saturday, Sept. 12, 2015. Visit harrisonpl.org for updates and more information.

English conversation group

Non-native English speakers can practice their English and make new friends in an informal, volunteer-led setting and learn about the Harrison library, too. No registration necessary. Group meets Mondays from 11 a.m. to noon at Uncle Henry’s Bar and Grill, 309 Halstead Ave.

Wiggle and Giggle

With Dawny Dew. Tuesdays, two 30-minute sessions from 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Songs, puppets, music, laughs and more, for ages 6 months to 5. Sponsored by the Friends of the Harrison Public Library. Meets at the Harrison Jewish Community Center, 130 Union Ave.

Laptime for Babies

Songs and fingerplays with Miss Claudia. This 20-minute program is specifically designed for non-walkers. Caregiver participation is required. Meets Wednesdays at 11 a.m. at the Harrison Senior Center, 216 Halstead Ave.

Movers and Shakers

Meets Wednesdays at 10 a.m. for 30 minutes of songs, rhymes, finger plays, dancing and fun. For ages 1 to 3. At the Harrison Senior Center, 216 Halstead Ave.

West Harrison library events

Story Time

Great stories, music and fun for ages 1 to 5. No registration necessary, bring your friends. Mondays at 10:30 a.m. for 30 minutes.

Open Play Time

Come into the library and meet other parents, grandparents, caregivers and children. Open for children ages 1 to 5. Make new friends, play, read and have fun with some special toys. Meets Wednesdays from 10 a.m. to noon.

Mother Goose Time

Songs, dancing and fun for the little ones ages 3 and under. Thursdays from 10:30 a.m. to 11 a.m.

Teens Reading Club

Running every Thursday until Aug. 6 at 2:30 p.m. for one hour. Contact the library at 948-2092 for more information.

Summer Concert Series

Harrison’s day campers get their turn on Wednesday, Aug. 5 at Ma Riis Park, and again on Thursday, Aug. 6 at the West Harrison Village Green. The second time around, Marty Carpenito & Syline and Frank Trapani will follow at 7:30 p.m.

Call the Harrison recreation hotline at 670-3039 for more information. All concerts start at 7 p.m. unless stated otherwise.

Harrison Recreation

Download brochu-res and applications for all recreation programs, unless stated otherwise, at harrison-ny.gov. For more information, questions, suggestions and/or comments, email recreation@harrison-ny.gov.

Soccer camp

Learn the basics skills of soccer and play games while enjoying a quick dip in the pool.

At Bernie Guagnini Park on Webster and Adelphi avenues. For boys and girls, grades one through seven. Meeting Monday to Friday, Aug. 10 to 14, 9 a.m. to noon. Cost: $100, payable to Town/Village of Harrison.

Boys’ lacrosse camp

Learn the fundamentals of lacrosse. This camp is great for beginners or players interested in improving their skills. Participants will be instructed by Harrison varsity lacrosse coaches and players. At West Harrison Park. For boys in first to 10th grade. Will meet Monday to Thursday, Aug. 10 to 14. For grades one to four, time will be 9 a.m. to noon, for $150. For grades five to 10, time will be 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., for $250. For more league information, to pay and/or register, visit harrisonyouthlacrosse.com.

Event rentals

Available at both the West Harrison Senior Annex and the Veteran’s Memorial Building in downtown Harrison, the building rental fee for events is $450 for 5 hours with a $300 security deposit. Add on additional space at either center for $100 plus an additional $100 security deposit. For questions and available dates call 670-3035. To rent the facility, you must have a 2015 Harrison resident identification card.

Swim camp

Come and enjoy a fun-filled week of aquatics at Ron Belmont Pool Complex from Aug. 10 through Aug. 14 from 9 a.m. to noon. Open to kids entering first through third grade. Instructions will include stroke development and water safety skills, water games, aquatic related art projects and free swimming. Classes cost $150, checks can be made payable to the Town/Village of Harrison.

Volunteer opportunities

The Harrison Recreation Department has many opportunities for high school students through senior citizens to volunteer with youth programs and senior programs. For more information, call 670-3035.

Harrison Senior Center

Harrison has two very active senior citizen clubs sponsored by the Recreation Department.

The West Harrison Group meets on Thursdays from noon to 3 p.m. at the Leo Mintzer Senior Annex Building, located at 251 Underhill Ave., to discuss items of interest, play bingo and discuss activities coming up in the near future.

The Downtown Group meets every Friday from noon to 3 p.m. at the Veterans Memorial Building, located at 210 Halstead Ave.

The membership fee for both groups is $24 per year and refreshments are served at gatherings.

There is also a drop-in center at the Harrison Community Center, at 216 Halstead Ave., Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. where you may enjoy television, cards and socializing.  Come by the Tuesday exercise
classes from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. at the community center.

For more information on recreation and social activities, call the Senior Citizen Center at 670-3000 ext. 3172.

Deadline for our What’s Going On section is every Thursday at noon. Though space is not guaranteed, we will do our best to accommodate your listing. Please send all items to news@hometwn.com.

 
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What’s going on in Rye

 

Estate planning for seniors

Pat Micek, Esq. of McMillan, Constabile, Maker & Perone, LLP, will address estate planning for seniors at the Rye Free Reading Room on Saturday, Aug. 1 from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.  The talk will include protecting your assets for your family, rather than losing them to a nursing home, and a Q&A period in plain language with no legalese.

For more information, visit ryelibrary.org
or call 231-3161.

Photography exhibit

World traveler Barbara Paul will display photographs of masked dancing she has witnessed in Africa and Asia at the Rye Free Reading Room from Aug. 5 to 29.  The unique exhibit highlights the animal-masked dancers at Festima in Burkina Faso and includes photographs of fascinating rituals and ceremonies in many other African and Asian countries. For more information, go to ryelibrary.org or call 231-3161.

Storytelling Guild

The Rye Storytellers’ Guild meets at the Rye Free Reading Room one Tuesday evening a month at 6 p.m. to share traditional and personal tales and trade tips on storytelling techniques. On Aug. 4, the group will tell humorous stories to celebrate the birth of Rye native, Ogden Nash, on Aug. 19, 1902. Listeners, as well as tellers, are always welcome to join the Guild members at their meetings. To learn more, contact Angela at Booksamc@aol.com.

Bilingual Storytime

Bilingual Birdies, a foreign language and live music program, will be back at the library to present a blast of culture, music and stories in Spanish. All family members will enjoy learning songs and rhymes en Español on Saturday, Aug. 1 at 11 a.m. for 30 minutes.

Teen Animation Workshop

The Rye Free Reading Room invites teens to register for a three-part Teen Animation Workshop taught by Westchester artist Susan Darwin from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. on Thursdays, Aug. 6, 13 and 20. The sessions will include an overview of animation and instruction in the medium of cut-up magazines and images to create “Monty Python-esque” films.

Participants may bring their own images—photos, magazines, posters and newspapers—ready to cut up or select from a supply of images brought by the instructor. Everything else will be provided, but teens should bring a smartphone or digital camera to test out their animations. To get the most out of the workshop, it is necessary to attend all three sessions. Space is limited. Please pre-register via the event description at ryelibrary.org. This series is sponsored by the Auxiliary Board of the Rye Free Reading Room.

Science Fun Club at the Rye library

Science teacher Johnda Ferrari is conducting a Summer Science Fun Club for children entering third through fifth grade at the Rye Free Reading Room. On Fridays, Aug. 7, 14, 21 and 28, the Westchester Children’s Museum will be at the library to conduct its own series of science programs. All the sessions begin at 4 p.m. and last approximately an hour. Some of the topics planned include bird and insect life, magnetism, a look inside the Earth, sharks, DNA and robotic bugs. All combine to present learning in a fun way and feature hands-on activities like experiments, games and crafts. Visit ryelibrary.org for specific information about each session and to sign up. Pre-registration is required and opens a week in advance of the program.

Playland Park

Milt Gerver Big Band Orchestra

See The Milt Gerver Orchestra and vocalists perform on Friday, Aug. 7 from 7:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. on the boardwalk. Come out to listen, dance and swing. Enter via the poolside parking entrance.

International Friendship Day

On Sunday, Aug. 2, celebrate Friendship Day with a $15 admission fee all day. Get a free friendship bracelet while supplies last. This admission price cannot be combined with other offers and coupons are not valid.

Parking fees apply. For more information, visit ryeplayland.org or call 813-7010.

Wainwright House

The Yoga Training Academy offers two summer certifications:

– July 31 to Aug. 2 from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.: Yin Yoga

Led by Corina Benner. Students will learn which tissues are being targeted, the physiological benefits of yoga and the subtle effects that contribute to the all-over good feeling the practice creates. Students will deeply investigate more than 25 Yin poses, as well as energy channels and emotional balancing. Upon completion, students will be able to field questions with confidence and true clarity. Fee: $450 for members; $500 for non-members.

— Aug. 13 to Aug. 16: Prenatal Yoga Teacher Training

Led by Sue Elkind. Also open to certified yoga teachers. Students will learn how to support women during their journey into motherhood both physically and emotionally. The training will provide essential techniques such as structuring and sequencing, asana modifications by trimester, key restorative postures, as well as alignment and anatomy. Fee: $600 for members; $650 for non-members.

For more information, call Carol Craig at 967-6080 or visit and register at wainwright.org.

Blood donation opportunities

Eligible donors are encouraged to choose their day to make a difference. Donors of all blood types—especially types O negative, A negative, and B negative—are needed.

Dates to donate blood:

Saturday, Aug. 1 from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., YMCA, 21 Locust Ave., in Rye.

How to donate blood:

Download the American Red Cross Blood Donor app, visit redcrossblood.org, or call 1-800-RED CROSS (733-2767) to make an appointment or for more information. All blood types are needed to ensure a reliable supply for patients. A blood donor card, driver’s license or two other forms of identification are required at check-in. Individuals who are 17,16 with parental consent in some states, weigh at least 110 pounds and are in generally good health may be eligible to donate blood. High school students and other donors 18 and younger also have to meet certain height and weight requirements. For more information, visit redcross.org or on Twitter at @RedCross.

Deadline for our What’s Going On section is every Thursday at noon. Though space is not guaranteed, we will do our best to accommodate your listing. Please send all items to news@hometwn.com.

 
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Former mayoral candidate faces ethics review

Former Village of Mamaroneck Trustee Andres Bermudez-Hallstrom, a Democrat, has filed an ethics complaint against Clark Neuringer, a member of the village’s Harbor and Coastal Zone Management Commission, for his involvement with a property at 115 Hoyt Ave., pictured. Photo/Jackson Chen

Former Village of Mamaroneck Trustee Andres Bermudez-Hallstrom, a Democrat, has filed an ethics complaint against Clark Neuringer, a member of the village’s Harbor and Coastal Zone Management Commission, for his involvement with a property at 115 Hoyt Ave., pictured. Photo/Jackson Chen

By JACKSON CHEN
An ethics complaint regarding a potential conflict of interest was filed against one of the Village of Mamaroneck’s harbor coastal commissioners on July 15. 

According to the ethics complaint, Clark Neuringer of the village’s Harbor and Coastal Zone Management Commission, HCZMC, may have violated the village’s code of ethics on several accounts. The complaint, which was submitted by Andres Bermudez-Hallstrom, a former Democratic trustee and attorney, seeks to remove Neuringer from his position as a HCZMC commissioner and charge the maximum amount of allowable fines.

Neuringer, who has served on the village’s various land use boards for more than three decades and was a Democratic mayoral candidate in 2013, said Bermudez-Hallstrom’s claims were farfetched and egregiously incorrect.

The complaint details that Neuringer, as a commissioner and resident of the village, was heavily involved in discussions regarding the impactful transit-oriented development legislation, TOD. The TOD law that was passed in November of last year aimed to rehabilitate the neglected areas near the Metro-North train station with the hopes of redeveloping much of the area. During village board discussions, the TOD legislation was referred to the HCZMC for its analysis on the impact of the legislation on all matters coastal in
the village.

Although Neuringer’s duties as a commissioner involved discussing TOD matters, the complaint said that Neuringer had a client with property located at 115 Hoyt Ave., which was deemed in-zone of the areas affected by the TOD law.

However, Neuringer said that his client, Bullseye Glass, was simply a tenant at the 115 Hoyt Ave. location and had no connection in terms of a personal financial benefit.

In an attempt to connect the dots between the tenant and the 115 Hoyt Ave. property, Bermudez-Hallstrom claims that Neuringer never disclosed in his Annual Disclosures—where all of the village’s board and commission members must disclose any conflicts or potential conflicts of interest regarding their professional work—that Bullseye Glass was a client of his. Instead, Neuringer listed 115 Hoyt LLC, the limited-liability company of the property, and Anthony Catanese, the property’s managing agent, as clients in his required yearly disclosure submissions to the village’s Ethics Board.

Bermudez-Hallstrom’s complaint states that Neuringer was working for both the 115 Hoyt Ave. property and the property owner under the guise of doing work for Bullseye Glass. After labeling 115 Hoyt as one of Neuringer’s clients, the complaint states that he should have recused himself from anything TOD related because one of his clients and their property would be affected by the TOD law.

However, Neuringer said that he completed a 7,800-square-foot renovation of a vacant warehouse space for Bullseye in mid-2013, before the TOD discussions came before the HCZMC. Those commission discussions took place in 2014. He also added that he completed a storefront for 115 Hoyt LLC in early 2013 as a one-time job where he had no personal relationship after the work was finished.

Neuringer stressed that since both projects with Bullseye Glass and 115 Hoyt LLC occurred prior to the HCZMC’s discussions of TOD, there was no feasible connection that would suggest financial gain for either of his clients or himself.

Still, Bermudez-Hallstrom said Neuringer’s actions were a violation of the village’s code of ethics, specifically where it states that board members are “prohibited from using his position or taking any discretionary action which he knows or has reason to know may result in a personal financial benefit to a customer, client or board member in question.”

In response, Neuringer, who had yet to receive the ethics notification, said, “I’ll get whatever paperwork and we will deal with it vigorously. In my estimation, we will expose Mr. Hallstrom for the fraud he is.”

Neuringer added that he will be represented by his lawyer in dealing with the ethics complaint.

While Bermudez-Hallstrom’s complaint has been filed with the village, the Board of Ethics has yet to set a meeting date to discuss this case.

Charles Mitchell, chairman of the Board of Ethics, could not be reached for comment as of press time.

CONTACT: jackson@hometwn.com

 
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Tuckahoe residents sign petition, call for fast food ban

Starbucks, pictured, and Carvel are the only franchises currently in Tuckahoe. Yet, in light of Subway forthcoming entrance in to the village’s marketplace, local residents signed a petition urging the Board of Trustees to amend the zoning code to ban future fast food restaurants.  File photo

Starbucks, pictured, and Carvel are the only franchises currently in Tuckahoe. Yet, in light of Subway forthcoming entrance in to the village’s marketplace, local residents signed a petition urging the Board of Trustees to amend the zoning code to ban future fast food restaurants. File photo

By CHRIS EBERHART
In reaction to Subway’s impending entrance into Tuckahoe, village residents circulated petitions urging the village’s Board of Trustees to amend its zoning code to ban similar fast food shops and chain restaurants from joining the sub shop in the village.

The Subway project is currently at the tail end of the planning process. Developers were able to find two more parking spots, giving them four in total, which brings the sub shop up to code and does away with the need for a variance. And with only the architectural design approval from the Planning Board pending, Subway is all but certain to join Tuckahoe’s Main Street landscape.

So while it’s too late to stop Subway from becoming part of the village, residents are turning their attention to future fast food shops and chain restaurants that may want to open their doors in the community.

During the July 13 village board meeting, Tuckahoe resident Albert Stern, who has been against Subway since its inception in late March, handed the village trustees petitions with more than 200 signatures urging the board to amend the zoning code to ban Subway-like restaurants in Tuckahoe.

The neighboring communities of Eastchester and Bronxville already have a ban in place, with Eastchester recently amending its zoning code in March 2013 to include what it defines as fast food and chain restaurants.

Margaret Uhle, head of Eastchester’s Building Department, said the town eliminated the definitions that were “believed to be imprecise and outdated,” such as cafeterias, full-service, carry-out, fast food restaurants and retail cafés, and developed new definitions that better describe the types of restaurants that the town wanted to prohibit.

According to the town’s zoning code, the prohibited food establishments were labeled “formula fast food and formula quick casual restaurants” and “formula fast casual/quick casual restaurants” and “share a common name, trademark, or logo with seven or more other restaurants in the area, region or country,” such as a Burger King or  McDonald’s.

While McDonald’s and Burger King-type food establishments were prohibited by the Town of Eastchester, a full-service chain or franchise restaurant like an Applebee’s or a Buffalo Wild Wings, where customers sit down, are served by wait staff and order from a menu, are permitted.

Petitioners in Tuckahoe want to see a similar ban happen in the village.

Stern said there are concerns that areas in Tuckahoe, specifically mentioning a proposed restaurant that would accompany a Marbledale Road Marriott hotel currently in front of the Planning Board, will turn into a “fast food alley.”

“A lot of these corporations can go buy this land and buy these buildings because this is a very suitable place for fast food-type restaurants,” Stern said. “So there’s more than just what meets the eye here.”

Tuckahoe Mayor Steve Ecklond, a Republican, said he isn’t concerned about a “fast food alley” because there aren’t a lot of open spaces left in the village.

“It’s not happening,” Ecklond said. “If we had empty land, I’d be more concerned. But the hotel would occupy the last open land on Marbledale [Road], and everything else in the village is built on.”

But the mayor and Board of Trustees aren’t dismissing the petitions and the call to amend the zoning code.

“We’re already working on it,” Ecklond said. “But banning fast food restaurants is too generic of a request. What is a fast food restaurant? We need to change the definitions in our zoning code. The ones that are already in existence are so bland and generic because [the zoning code] was adopted 50 years ago or more.”

He said Tuckahoe will follow in Eastchester’s footsteps to establish a ban on fast foods by first deciding which food establishments exist and then deciding which should stay and which should go. Then there needs to be a public hearing before being adopted as a local law. In total, the process of amending the zoning code took Eastchester a year.

As a way to tackle this and other pending issues in the village, Ecklond said the village trustees will meet with Tuckahoe Village Administrator David Burke once a month in a public forum to discuss one topic per month. This will be one of the topics discussed in the coming months.

CONTACT: christopher@hometwn.com