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Local Summit focuses on village development

New World Realty Advisors, LLC representatives Thomas Nappi, left, and Daniel Pfeffer describe the current development plan for Hampshire Country Club at the Local Summit’s breakfast program on Nov. 17.  Photo/John Gitlitz

New World Realty Advisors, LLC representatives Thomas Nappi, left, and Daniel Pfeffer describe the current development plan for Hampshire Country Club at the Local Summit’s breakfast program on Nov. 17.
Photo/John Gitlitz

By Linnet Tse
Addressing a packed room at the Local Summit’s breakfast program in Mamaroneck on Nov. 17 were representatives from the Village of Mamaroneck and from New World Realty Advisors, LLC, the organization responsible for managing the redevelopment of Hampshire Country Club. Village Manager Richard Slingerland, accompanied by Bob Galvin, village planner, and Greg Cutler, assistant village planner, provided an overview of the development projects currently underway in the Village of Mamaroneck, including Hampshire Country Club. Daniel Pfeffer and Thomas Nappi, from New World Realty Advisors, LLC, provided details on their current plan to redevelop Hampshire.

While the proposed redevelopment of Hampshire has received a lot of attention due in part to the opposition by certain community groups, few audience members were aware of the other potentially influential development projects currently underway in the Village of Mamaroneck.

First, Slingerland reviewed recently-implemented zoning amendments intended to encourage development consistent with the village’s comprehensive plan update adopted in February 2012. The main amendments include Transit-Oriented Development and Library Lane. The Transit-Oriented Development, TOD, change was passed in November 2014, and was created  to revitalize the area on Mamaroneck Avenue west of the train tracks. TODs aim to create mixed-use residential and commercial space near active train stations and promote reduced reliance on personal automobiles and are currently in effect in Bronxville, Mount Kisco, Pelham and Scarsdale.

Library Lane is a proposal to rezone the west side of Library Lane from C-1 (general commercial) to C-2 (downtown commercial), consistent with the east side of the road. Five properties on the west side of Library Lane would be affected, but the impact is expected to be minimal.

The current Hampshire proposal calls for eliminating the golf course, and adding 44 single-family homes and 61 townhouses scattered throughout the 116-acre property, most of which lies in the Village of Mamaroneck; however, Dan Pfeffer explained that New World Realty Advisors’, NWRA, plans for Hampshire began differently.

Hampshire closed its doors because of financial problems in December 2009, and was sold to NWRA in June 2010 for $12.1 million. Pfeffer was quoted in a Larchmont Gazette article published in  June 2010 saying there were no immediate plans to turn the club into a housing development; instead it was being used for Mamaroneck High School’s golf team and charitable events.

Pfeffer said that after purchasing the club, NWRA planned on creating a “Country Club Community” that preserved the golf course, turning the area where the current clubhouse is located into condominium housing and giving up their development rights to the remaining land by putting it in a land trust. However, this plan would have required a zoning change as the current clubhouse—the site of the proposed condominiums—is located in a protected marine zone that does not permit development. This controversial plan sparked opposition from neighbors concerned about any development in the environmentally-sensitive and flood-prone area. According to Pfeffer, when this original rezoning plan was submitted to the Village of Mamaroneck Board of Trustees in February 2014, it was immedi-
ately rejected.

Following the initial rejection, NWRA revised its plans based on community feedback, reducing the proposed condominium units by 25 percent to 96 units. However, the plan was rejected again with no discussion.summit2

Hampshire submitted the current plan to the Village of Mamaroneck in June 2015. The plan did not require any zoning changes, and instead proposed that single-family homes be scattered throughout the current golf course. Pfeffer noted that, in keeping with FEMA regulations, homes would be built above the predicted floodplain, and although the golf course would be destroyed, the clubhouse, swimming pool and tennis courts would be preserved.

Following the recent Local Summit meeting, the Village of Mamaroneck’s Planning Board approved the Scope for an Environmental Impact Statement, EIS, process for the Hampshire redevelopment project, requiring Hampshire to prepare a draft EIS to be circulated, reviewed, edited and supplemented into a final copy. Upon completion of SEQRA, the site plan will be adjusted and finalized, a process that Slingerland estimates to last from one to two years based on the average amount of time that SEQRA reviews usually take. A $55 million lawsuit by the club against the village over the process of rejecting their rezoning proposal remains in progress.

Forliano

Column: Eastchester beginnings and the first Noel

The 1835 One-Room School House, run by the Eastchester Historical Society, where the annual Victorian Christmas Party will be held on the afternoon of Dec. 12. Photo courtesy Richard Forliano

The 1835 One-Room School House, run by the Eastchester Historical Society, where the annual Victorian Christmas Party will be held on the afternoon of Dec. 12. Photo courtesy Richard Forliano

Centuries ago, deeply-religious Protestants started Eastchester. However, the celebration of Christmas did not take place in this town until many years later. This is the story of how Christmas came to Eastchester.

The Town of Eastchester began in 1664 when Phillip Pinckney and 10 Puritan farm families from Fairfield, Conn., bought Eastchester from Thomas Pell, a land merchant and the future lord of Pelham Manor. The Puritans both in Britain, and even more so in the New England colonies, practiced an austere religion without what they considered to be the corrupt and ostentatious practices of the Catholic and Episcopal churches. Strict rules and harsh punishment outlawed sinful practices. Singing and dancing were discouraged. The practice of celebrating Christmas was forbidden.

The 10 Puritan farm families were hard-working and high-minded individuals who set the foundation for the present Town of Eastchester. A very important document called the Eastchester Covenant was signed a year after the first families moved in. A covenant is an agreement between people made in the sight of God. The covenant stated what kind of community Eastchester would be and what type of government the town would have. It was clearly stated that the men of Eastchester would run their own affairs by holding town meetings every other week “for one hour to talk about good things.” Town board meetings continue to this day to run the affairs of Eastchester.

The founders of the town made old Eastchester appear like a New England town. The town government supported the minister, educated the children so that they could read the Bible, and, to use the exact words of the covenant, “keep and maintain Christian love and civil honesty.” Overseers were set up to help the poor, orphans, widows and people in need. The ministers made sure that men did not mistreat their wives. One-room schoolhouses dotted
the landscape.

The Eastchester Covenant in many ways is like the Mayflower Compact of Westchester County. However, as time passed, the Puritan character of Eastchester began to wane. Here, there was never any witchcraft hysteria similar to what swept over Salem, Mass., in 1692. The practice of public whippings for crimes committed was abolished in 1754 at the start of the French and Indian War.

Also at the beginning of the 18th century, the inhabitants of Eastchester began to celebrate Christmas. St. Paul’s Church, the site where Eastchester began in 1664, was made an Episcopal Church by an act of the Anglican king. The priest who was sent to take over the church did not ostracize the Puritans who founded the church, but instead shared the church with them. Christmas was an important holiday to Episcopal Anglicans outside of Britain. Thirty-eight years after the founding of the town, deeply-religious Christians of this town started to practice Christmas at their Sunday services.

The spirit of holidays lives on as the Eastchester Historical Society keeps the rich historic traditions of the town alive. The most important tradition comes from the Eastchester covenant that the citizens of Eastchester should “keep and maintain Christian love and civil honesty.” Put simply in 21st century language, the covenant states that this town will be dedicated to the principles of compassion, integrity, co-operation and generosity.

 

Please contact us at historian@eastchester-historicalsociety.org about
any comments or questions  
you might have about  his column.

 
LETTER

Letter: Vote Winter for fire district commissioner

 

 

To the Editor, 

Years of reform at the Eastchester Fire District, EFD, are on the line in the upcoming election. Please vote on Tuesday, Dec. 8 from 2 p.m. to 9 p.m. and encourage your friends and neighbors to vote for Dennis Winter for EFD commissioner.

Winter has been a tireless advocate for the public. He has worked to manage responsibly the $16.5 million EFD budget funded by a tax levy, making this is a critical election. In the past, Winter and Chief Grogan had discovered thousands of improperly-spent tax dollars. Following this discovery, the Eastchester fire board placed the former EFD treasurer on paid administrative leave, during which she collected a salary from the Greenburgh schools. The EFD has had to spend more than $15,000 in legal fees to defend successfully itself and its commissioners from four matters brought on by the former treasurer, who happens to be Winter’s opponent in this contested race.

While Winter’s opponent is justly proud that a family member is an EFD firefighter, that is not a qualifier for candidacy. The Eastchester fire board needs to be absent of any conflicts of interest, especially when negotiating union contracts with the paid firefighters.

For access to public documents regarding this election’s candidates, visit publicsearchpro.com and bronxville.org.

 

Mary Neagle Smith, 

Bronxville 

LETTER

Letter: Keep Winter on fire board

 

 

To the Editor,

On Dec. 8, Dennis Winter will be running for re-election to the Town of Eastchester Board of Fire Commissioners. Winter has served as the board’s chairman for the last three years and, under his leadership, the board has achieved many significant accomplishments, including:

Achieving accountability and transparency to the district taxpayers.

Creating an impartial Board of Fire District Commissioners with no alliances to current or former fire district employees.

The adoption of a 2016 budget with no increase to the current $16.5 million property tax levy.

The reduction of the fire district’s property tax levy in 2015.

Completing critical revitalizations of two aging district firehouses.

Increasing the district’s Insurance Service Office rating that places the fire district within the top 2 percent of fire departments nationwide. This rating can result in lower insurance premiums for homeowners within the Eastchester Fire District.

Restructuring of the district’s administrative office including an appointment of a new treasurer and auditor.

The fire district election is especially important this year. Winter’s opponent, Cara Piliero, is the same former district treasurer whom the board placed on administrative leave in 2013 after an internal audit uncovered accounting irregularities. The board’s investigation found that Piliero:

billed health insurance premiums to some but not all of the retired firefighters required to pay such premiums, costing the fire district an estimated $800,000 in uncollected premiums;

failed to bill two fire commissioners (who had previously been firefighters) for their percentage of health insurance costs; and

overpaid one retired firefighter $235,200 in disability payments over 13 years.

Also, computer accounting records were improperly maintained. The new treasurer took over the department general ledger with a $30 million deficit incorrectly recorded. As treasurer on administrative leave, the fire district was paying Piliero’s benefits and salary. The board subsequently found out she was also employed at the Greenburgh school district collecting a second paycheck, and did not inform the fire district or the Greenburgh school district that she was simultaneously collecting a full-time salary from both entities.

Despite this alarming history, Piliero now seeks election to the Eastchester Board of Fire Commissioners, the very district she has instituted several legal actions against which have been dismissed or withdrawn at the cost to taxpayers of $16,000 in legal fees.

Winter’s volunteerism to the district has been invaluable and greatly appreciated by his fellow commissioner and the citizens of the Town of Eastchester.

Your vote matters and is crucial to this year’s election, so please get out and vote for Dennis Winter on Dec. 8.

 

Jerry Napolitano,

Eastchester fire commissioner

WGO

What’s going on in Mamaroneck 12-4-2015

Mamaroneck Public Library

Holiday arts and crafts fair

Come support local artisans and crafters this holiday season at the annual holiday arts and crafts fair on Sunday, Dec. 5 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on the lower level. The sale is presented by the Village of Mamaroneck Arts Council and the Mamaroneck Public Library. To sign up for a free table, contact the Village of Mamaroneck Arts Council at vomartscouncil@gmail.com.

Information session: ‘Do You Need Health Insurance?’

Make an appointment with a one-on-one information session with a Westchester County Health Department Navigator, who will be in the library’s Tech Room on Wednesday, Dec. 9 from 3:30 p.m. to 7 p.m. Representatives will answer questions about health insurance-related topics, including Essential Plans, Medicaid, Child Health Plus and health coverage for business owners’ employees. Clients should be prepared with their Social Security numbers, documents for legal immigrants, birth dates, employer and income information and insurance policy numbers. For more information or to schedule an appointment, call 813-5192. Appointments are available in English and in Spanish.

De-stress and self-express

This activity, held on Monday, Dec. 14 from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. in the Community Room in the lower level, involves coloring for adults ages 18 and older. The library will provide music and calming adult coloring books with intricate designs. Refreshments will also be served.

Larchmont Public Library

The library will be closed for construction beginning Tuesday, Dec. 8. Existing shelves will be moved to the Village Center and the Burchell Children’s Room will remain open. The library will reopen during the summer of 2016. For more information about the library’s relocation, call the Reference Desk at 834-2281 ext. 3 or email larchmontlibrary@hotmail.com.

Drop-in craft: water bottle penguins

This drop-in program appropriate for children ages 3 and up, will take place on Saturday, Dec. 5. Children will be able to create penguins out of water bottles in no longer than 15 minutes. No registration is required for this program.

Author discussion

Join Jon Birger, author of “Date O-nomics: How Dating Became a Lopsided Numbers Game,” as he reads from his book on Sunday, Dec. 6 at 4 p.m. in the Village Center, with refreshments served at 3:30 p.m. Using a combination of demographics, game theory and number crunching, Birger, a financial and tech journalist, explains America’s current dating and marriage market. The reading is free and open to the public with no reservations required.

Gingerbread houses

Children will be able to decorate a gingerbread house on Monday, Dec. 7 from 6 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. in the Michael P. Coords Activity Room. This program is appropriate for children in grades six and up. Online registration is required at larchmontlibrary.org/sign-up-for-gingerbreadhouses/.

Full steam ahead: explosive science

This new program series highlights the basic principles behind science, technology, engineering, arts and math, and will hold its next series on Tuesday, Dec. 8 at 3:30 p.m. The program is appropriate for children ages 3 and 4 and will involve using chemistry to blow up a balloon and make spaghetti dance. A free ticket is required to attend this event. Tickets will be given out a half hour before the program begins on a first-come, first-served basis.

Stories and crafts: snow and snowmen

Warm up with snowy stories on Thursday, Dec. 10 from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. The program will be followed by a puffy-paint snowman craft activity. This event is appropriate for children ages 5 to 7. A free ticket is required to attend this event. Tickets will be given out a half hour before the program begins on a first-come, first-served basis.

Storytime: ‘Things That Go’

This program, which will take place on Saturday, Dec. 12 from 11 a.m. until noon, will feature stories and songs about different modes of
transportation, and will be followed by a period of free play with toy cars and trucks. This program is appropriate for children of all ages. A free ticket is required to attend this event. Tickets will be given out a half hour before the program begins on a first-come, first-served basis.

Woman’s Club of Larchmont

Book and author luncheon

The Woman’s Club of Larchmont will be holding their holiday book and author luncheon on Friday, Dec. 11 from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at Orienta Beach Club located at 1054 Walton Ave. in Mamaroneck. The luncheon will feature talks by three authors, Dr. Jacueline Horner Plumez, Elizabeth Bradley and Judith Summerfield. The luncheon is open to the public and is open to all. Books will be available for purchase and signing. Tickets to the event are $45 each and reservations must be made by Dec. 5. For more information or to make a reservation, call Dorothy Rainier at 834-0507.

Larchmont Temple

Vodka and latkes: the sequel

A night full of food, cocktails, music and friends will be held on Saturday, Dec. 5 at 7:30 p.m. in the Social Hall of the Larchmont Temple, located at 75 Larchmont Ave. in Larchmont. Tickets to the event are $60 per person and can be bought online at brownpapertickets.com/event/2462692.

Six13 in concert

This holiday concert will be held on Sunday, Dec. 6 at 4 p.m. in the Garden Room of the Larchmont Temple and will include crafts, treats and candle lighting. The concert is free and open the public. Participants are encouraged to bring canned goods to donate to the temple’s “Feeding Our Neighbor: An Interfaith Response” initiative.

 

Girl Scouts of Larchmont-Mamaroneck 

Holiday gift and craft fair

The Girl Scouts of Larchmont-Mamaroneck will be holding their annual holiday gift and craft fair on Sunday, Dec. 6 from noon to 4 p.m. at the Larchmont Girl Scout House, located at 90 Harmon Drive. Items sold by local vendors will include jewelry, hostess gifts and knitted wear. Additionally, Girl Scout troops will be selling handmade gifts and crafts. Refreshments and baked goods will be available for purchase as well as ingredients for s’mores. The fair is free and open to the public.

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.

 
WGO

What’s going on in Rye 12-4-2015

Visit ryelibrary.org for more information on events and programs, especially for young children.

Family storytime and craft

On Saturdays from 11 a.m. to noon. For ages 3 and a half and up. Children listen to age-appropriate stories and participate in fun games, rhymes and other activities to develop preliteracy skills and an interest in books and reading. Felt boards, puppets and other props are sometimes used to enhance stories and model future classroom experience. A fun craft project is designed around the story theme or a seasonal topic. Parents and caregivers are asked to assist younger children using scissors, glue and other art materials.

Musical Monday

On Monday, Dec. 7 from noon to 2 p.m. in the Meeting Room. “White Christmas” is a 1954 American musical romantic comedy film directed by Michael Curtiz and starring Bing Crosby, Danny Kaye, Rosemary Clooney and Vera-Ellen, loosely based on the 1942 film “Holiday Inn.” Filmed in Technicolor, it features the songs of Irving Berlin, including a new version of the title song, “White Christmas.” Running time: 120 minutes.

RAISE lecture and meeting

On Tuesday, Dec. 8 from 7 p.m. to 9 p.m. in the Meeting Room. Presented by Rye All Inclusive Special Education, a sub-group of the Rye PTO and a support group for parents who have children with an IEP or 504 and live in Rye. This meeting will feature a lecture about helpful techniques for finding a college for a child with a 504 or IEP.

Windows 10 basics

On Thursday, Dec. 10 from 10 a.m. to noon in the Raho Technology Center. Windows 10 is the new Microsoft operating system for all new computers. This new system has new functions that are different from previous versions. This seminar will cover how to use the new Start Menu along with the apps that are in the new system. Also covered will be the new look of Windows Explorer and handling files. This seminar will be helpful to those thinking of buying a new computer as well as some who have a new computer with Windows 10.

Attendees that have laptops with Windows 10 installed may bring them with a fully charged battery to the seminar. No advance sign-up. First come, first served. Classes are taught by Mike Negrelli who worked for IBM for 37 years.

Personal care products and safety

On Thursday, Dec. 10 from 7:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. in the Meeting Room. Make sure you really know what’s in your products before you buy them for the holidays. Who regulates the personal care products industry, and how are consumers protected? Which ingredients are safe and which are not? How can we help protect the broader community as well as our families? Jane Sanders’ educational presentation is based on her work with Beautycounter, a company on a mission to change how the beauty industry operates in the name of consumer health and safety.

Wainwright House

Dickens Weekend

On Saturday, Dec. 5 and Sunday, Dec. 6 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Come for a Dickens of a weekend with free arts and crafts for kids; free holiday snacks and refreshments; live music; hand bell choir; an Irish dance troop performance; a marionette show; a caricature artist; a holiday cooking demonstration; free souvenir photos; a raffle; and a tempting holiday marketplace offering handcrafted, unique gifts.

Rye Presbyterian Church

Happy Holidays Concert

Happy Holidays Concert, presented by the Westchester Choral Society led by conductor Frank Nemhauser, will be held on Sunday, Dec. 6 at 3 p.m. at Rye Presbyterian Church, 882 Boston Post Road in Rye. Program features Durante/Pergolesi’s “Magnificat,” Bonia Shur’s “Kol Haneshamah,” Craig Courtney’s “A Musicological Journey Through the Twelve Days of Christmas,” and other holiday favorites. Fee is $25 for general admission, $10 for students. For tickets and more information, visit westchesterchoralsociety.org.

Rye Recreation 

Resident registration for winter programs begins online on Monday, Dec. 7 at 10 a.m. Non-resident registration begins online on Monday, Dec. 14 after 10 a.m. To view the winter 2015-2016 brochure, visit ryeny.gov/recreation. For more information on programs and registration, you can also email registration@ryeny.gov or call 967-2535.

The Damiano Recreation Center is located at 281 Midland Ave. in Rye. Office hours are Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Register early. Most programs have minimum requirements and may be cancelled due to low enrollment. Nothing cancels programs more than waiting until the last minute to register. In addition, programs have maximum enrollments and may fill up quickly.

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.

 
WGO

What’s going on in Harrison 12-4-2015

Harrison Recreation

Swimming lessons

This seven-week-long program will begin on Saturday, Dec. 12 at LMK Middle School and is appropriate for children in kindergarten through fifth grades. Lessons for children in fourth and fifth grade will begin at 9 a.m., lessons for children in second and third grade will begin at 10 a.m. and lessons for children in kindergarten and first grade will begin at 11 a.m. Lessons will be taught by Red Cross certified instructor Dorothy Klein. The total cost of lessons is $100 per child. Checks may be made payable to the Town/Village of Harrison. Enrollment is limited and will be closed when all spaces have been filled. For more information or to enroll in this program, call 670-3035.

Floor hockey

This free, four-week-long activity will begin on Tuesday, Jan. 26 from 3:30 p.m. to 4:15 p.m. and is appropriate for children in first through fifth grades. Children in first and second grades will play on Tuesdays at the Sollazzo Center; children in second and third grades will play on Tuesdays at the Leo Mintzer Center; children in third, fourth and fifth grades will play on Wednesdays at the Sollazzo Center; and children in fourth and fifth grades will play on Wednesdays at the Leo Mintzer Center. New teams will be formed each week and children will learn general floor hockey skills and the rules of the game. Registration began on Tuesday, Dec. 1. For more information or to register, call 670-3035.

Write letters to Santa

Children of all ages who are residents of Harrison will have the opportunity to write letters to Santa from now until Friday, Dec. 18. All letters should include each child’s name and home address and should be addressed to the North Pole. Letters should be dropped off at the mailbox at the Sollazzo Center, located at 270 Harrison Ave., the Recreation Department at Town Hall, located at 1 Heineman Place, or the Leo Mintzer Center located at 251 Underhill Ave. in West Harrison.

Fordham University

‘Healthcare Policy and Regulatory Issues’ workshop

Fordham’s new workshop series, called “Healthcare Policy and Regulatory Issues,” will run on Tuesday, Dec. 8 from 7 p.m. to 9:45 p.m. This workshop will examine current political, legal, technological and economic healthcare policy developments and will make participants familiar with legal, ethical and policy issues in the changing landscape of healthcare. For more information or to register, email healthcarepcs@fordham.edu or call 367-3301.

‘Healthcare Marketing, Social Media
and Ethics’ workshop

Fordham’s one-time workshop called “Healthcare Marketing, Social Media and Ethics,” will run on Saturday, Dec. 5 from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. This workshop will provide an introduction to the methods and strategies associated with healthcare marketing and patient information sources, and the issue of the medicalization of society will also be examined. The workshop will concentrate in evaluating medical web content, ethical advertising, and practical skills needed to provide the public with precise and reliable health knowledge. Tuition for this workshop is $175. For more information or to register, email healthcarepcs@fordham.edu or call 367-3301.

‘Landlord-Tenant Law’ class

Fordham School of Professional and Continuing Studies in conjunction with the New York Real Estate Institute has announced it is offering a seven-and-a-half hour course on New York Landlord-Tenant Law on Sundays, Dec. 6 and Dec. 13 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The class will cover laws concerning residential and non-residential tendencies in New York, rights and obligations of owners and occupants, lease provisions or rent-regulated apartments and commercial properties and termination of the landlord-tenant relationship, including legal proceedings. The course will be taught by Salvador Rozenberg, a Connecticut and New York State-licensed real estate broker and an adjunct professor with numerous colleges and universities including the New York Real Estate Institute. Tuition for both classes is $100. For more information or to register, call 367-3301.

Manhattanville College

Fall concert

On Saturday, Dec. 5 at 4 p.m., the Manhattanville College Community Orchestra, under the direction of conductor Olivier Fluchaire, will present its fall concert in the O’Byrne Chapel on the college campus at 2900 Purchase St. in Purchase. Admission is free and open to the public.

The program will feature “Moldau” by Bedich Smetana, “1812 Overture” by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky and other selections with the Manhattanville College Chorus, John Cuk, director, and The Quintessentials under Mark Cherry, director. For more information, call the Manhattanville College Music Office at 323-5260.

 Scarsdale Medical Group

‘Healthy Holiday Eating’ seminar

A free seminar called “Healthy Holiday Eating” will be held on Monday, Dec. 14 from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. at the Harrison office located at 600 Mamaroneck Ave. in the second floor waiting room. The workshop will be presented by registered dietician Daria Ventura and will focus on tips to help participants navigate the holiday season while maintaining their waistline and will cover strategies to help participants avoid overeating during holiday parties. Space is limited and pre-registration is advised. Reservations must be received by Dec. 9. For more information or to make a reservation for the seminar, email seminars@scarsdalemedical.com.

Westchester Philharmonic 

Winter Pops

The Westchester Philharmonic presents “Winter Pops,” an annual holiday concert conducted by Ted Sperling, on Sunday, Dec. 20 at 3 p.m. in the Concert Hall at the Performing Arts Center at Purchase College. The concert will feature musical selections sung by Ashley Brown accompanied by an orchestra and pianist Joe Mohan. The program will include American songbook standards and holiday favorites. The event will be followed by a Pops After Party, which includes mingling with performers, hors d’oeuvres and a wine tasting. Tickets are $22 per person with a Pops ticket purchase. For more information or to purchase tickets, call the box office at 682- 3707 ext. 10 or visit westchesterphil.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.

 
WGO

What’s going on in New Rochelle 12-4-2015

New Rochelle Public Library

Friends Holiday Book Sale

The Friends of the Library will be holding a holiday book sale on Friday, Dec. 5 and Saturday, Dec. 6 from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the first floor lobby. The sale will include inexpensive good-condition books, DVDs, games and puzzles.

BID family make a gift fair

Children ages 5 and older are invited to the library on Saturday, Dec. 6 anytime from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. in the Meeting Room and lobby to make three holiday gifts to give to family, friends or teachers. The library will provide materials, help, wrapping paper and gift tags.

Young Artists Concert

Accomplished musicians in grades seven through 12 will perform in the 52nd annual Westchester Musicians Guild’s Young Artists Concert on Saturday, Dec. 6 from 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. in the Ossie Davis Theater. The concert is free and open to the public.

Family concert with Gabriele Trachina

Gabriele Trachina, jazz vocalist and music educator, will be performing on Sunday, Dec. 13 from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. Accompanied by Joe Vincent Tranchina on the piano, the concert will include holiday favorites such as “Christmas Song,” “Winter Wonderland,” “Let it Snow,” “Feliz Navidad” and “My Favorite Things.” The concert is free and open to the public.

New Rochelle Opera

‘Amahl and the Night Visitors’

New Rochelle Opera’s 30th anniversary season culminates with a production of Gian Carlo Menotti’s opera “Amahl and the Night Visitors” on Friday, Dec. 4 and Saturday, Dec. 5 at 7 p.m. at the Linda Kelly Theatre at New Rochelle High School, located at 265 Clove Road in New Rochelle. In keeping with the company’s mission of exposing opera to the next generation of opera lovers, New Rochelle Opera is collaborating with New Rochelle High School’s PAVE program for this holiday presentation. The production will be staged by company co-founder and artistic director Camille Coppola, with musical direction by Derrick James and choreography by Christine Coleman. Fully sung in English, the operetta will feature a two-piano accompaniment played by Renee Guerrero and David Jutt. The cast includes Lilyana Grantcharova as Amahl, Kristin Behrmann as the Mother, Joshua Benevento as King Kaspar, Steven Herring as King Melchior and Steven Fredericks as King Balthazar. The chorus and dancers are the members of New Rochelle High School’s PAVE program, which is supervised by Marc Schneider, and the set will be designed by the Art Honor Society of the high school advised by Alexi Brock.

Tickets are $10 for adults and $5 for students. To purchase advance tickets, visit nropera.org or send a check payable to New Rochelle Opera, Inc., to P.O. Box 55, New Rochelle, NY 10804. To receive tickets by mail, include a stamped, self-addressed envelope. For more information, call 576-1617.

Beth El Synagogue Center

Blood drive

A New York Blood Center blood drive will take on Sunday, Dec. 6 from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at Beth El Synagogue, located at 1324 North Ave. in New Rochelle. This drive is a joint effort sponsored by Beth El Men’s Club and Temple Israel of New Rochelle. Register for a time slot at bethelnr.org/blooddrive. For more information, contact the Beth El office at 235-2700 ext. 223 or email Mitch Kaphan at BENRblooddrive@gmail.com.

The College of New Rochelle

Exhibit: ‘Nativity Scenes from the Americas’

The College of New Rochelle’s Castle Gallery will be hosting a new exhibit “Nativity Scenes from the Americas,” featuring curated selections from the Kate Canty Crèche Collection. The exhibition opened on Tuesday, Dec. 1 and will be on display until Saturday, Jan. 10, 2016 with an opening reception scheduled for Sunday, Dec. 6 from noon to 2 p.m. and a family day scheduled for Saturday, Dec. 12 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. The opening reception, family day and exhibition are free and open to the public. For more information, call 654-5423 or visit castlegallery.cnr.edu.

Holiday Vendors Fair

The Student Service Holiday Vendors’ Fair will take place on Tuesday, Dec. 8 from noon to 3 p.m. in the Sweeny Student Center Dining Hall on the main campus. Unique items to be used as holiday gifts will be sold.

Iona College

Christmas Mass and Santa breakfast

Come celebrate the holiday season with Mass on Sunday, Dec. 6 at 10:30 a.m. in the Thomas J. Burke Lounge in Spellman Hall. Breakfast will follow immediately in Mulcahy Gymnasium in the Hynes Athletic Center. The event is $20 for adults and $12 for children ages 3 through 12, with free admission for children under 2. The fee includes a photo with Santa and a gift. In the spirit of the holiday season, attendees are encouraged to bring a new, unwrapped toy to support the Marine Toys for Tots Foundation to be collected during breakfast. For more information or to register for the event, visit iona.edu.

The Symphony of Westchester
at Iona College

All-Baroque program

The symphony’s season will continue on Sunday, Dec. 13 at 3 p.m. with an all-Baroque program featuring concertmaster and violinist Alex Abayev and violinist Ben Hellman. Abayev and Hellman will perform Bach’s “Double Violin Concerto” and more. Abayev performs as a soloist and chamber musician in the United States and abroad and participates in many international music festivals. Hellman’s appearances in the New York area, as well as in other parts of the country, have included solo recitals, concertos, chamber music and orchestral performances.

A snow date for this concert has been set for Saturday, Dec. 12 at 3 p.m. For more information or to purchase tickets, visit thesymphonyofwestchester.org or call 654-4926.

Humane Society of Westchester

Online auction

The Humane Society of Westchester’s Facebook online auction will conclude on Wednesday, Dec. 9 at 8 p.m. Holiday gifts will be auctioned off and all proceeds will go benefit the homeless animals at the shelter. For more information, contact Beverly Royal Press at 632-2925.

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.

 
WGO

What’s going on in Eastchester 12-4-2015

Eastchester Public Library

Visit eastchesterlibrary.org to register and for more information on events and programs, especially for young children.

Library teen group

On Monday, Dec. 7 from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. The library’s teen group is back for another year. The group has helped create a lot of new programs for teens and helped shape the library’s collection. This program is open to sixth graders and up. For more information, contact Elizabeth at 721-8102 or eportillo@wlsmail.org.

Middle grade book chat and advisory group

On Wednesday, Dec. 9 from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. For grades four and five. This program is drop-off. Online pre-registration is suggested.

This is a new program aimed at avid readers, and will be in a “book talk” format. The librarian will start out by highlighting a book that he has enjoyed, and participants will be asked to bring in their own titles—one or two each—to share. Participants will be reminded that the goal is to get their friends to want to read the book, so they shouldn’t give away the ending. Time will be set aside at the end of the program for “advisory,” meaning the participants can offer their feedback as to what type of books they would like the library to have more of. Refreshments will be served. For more information, contact Johnathan at 721-8105 or jheifetz@wlsmail.org.

Reading Buddies Book Club

On Wednesday, Dec. 16 from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. This program is aimed at avid readers in grades two and three. This program is drop-off. Online pre-registration is suggested.

The selection will be chosen and announced at least a month in advance. It will be a roundtable discussion, where participants will discuss why they liked or didn’t like the book and how it compares to other books they have read. There will be a trivia contest with prizes, and refreshments will be served. For more information, contact Johnathan at 721-8105 or jheifetz@wlsmail.org.

Bronxville Public Library

Visit bronxvillelibrary.org to register and for more information on events and programs, especially for young children.

Beading workshop

On Monday, Dec. 7 from 1:30 p.m. to 3 p.m. Let your creativity shine as you learn how to make a beaded necklace, just in time for the holidays to make a great gift for yourself or a loved one. All beads and materials will be supplied. Adults only please.

Advanced registration is required. Stop by the Reference Desk, call 337-7680 ext. 24 or email bronxvillelibrary@gmail.com.

Let’s Build!

On Tuesday, Dec. 8 from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. A Westchester Children’s Museum program: Individual and group projects engage students in this fabulous series that encourages creativity and thinking skills along with design and engineering concepts. A six-week series open to children ages 7 to 11.

The last session is called “Concepts: Nature.” Learn about trees, rocks, mountains, lakes and rivers. How are these organic creations different from everything we have built so far? An activity will be done where children will build organic creations of their choosing. Include child’s name and age when registering online.

A cappella concert

On Tuesday, Dec. 8 from 7:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. The Friends of Bronxville Public Library present Mass Transit, NYU’s original, all-male a cappella group. Established in 1997, Mass Transit brings a world of fun to contemporary a cappella. Always current and with a constantly updated set list, the group brings their own style and musicianship to create a fresh take on well-known songs. With a hint of holiday spirit thrown into the mix, come and be entertained by one of the country’s most elite performance groups. The concert is free and will be followed by a reception. Generously sponsored by the Friends of the Bronxville Public Library.

Teddy Bear Sleepover Storycraft

On Thursday, Dec. 10 from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. Bring a teddy bear or stuffed animal friend from home to this storytime and let them sleepover at the library. Who knows what mischief the toys will get into in the overnight hours? Return the following day to pick up your toy. All children will receive photos of their toy’s fun at the library. For ages 3 and up.

Community volunteers and donations

Snow angels needed

The Snow Angels program needs volunteers to aid the elderly and disabled with snow removal. All requests from volunteers are matched up with a request from someone who lives near them and who has requested help with snow/ice removal.

Volunteers will receive community service hours from the program coordinator. Many local seniors rely on this help during the winter and are very appreciative of any help that they get. It is a strictly volunteer program. If interested, please contact Sheila Marcotte at tuckahoesnowangels@yahoo.com. She will then contact the program coordinator directly. Parents can call her at 309-6947.

Community food drive

Eastchester Community Action Partnership, ECAP,  would like your help feeding the needy families in the community this holiday season. Please help by donating: canned tuna, salmon, ham, chicken and/or beef; rice; hot and cold cereal; complete pancake mix; dry or canned beans; macaroni and cheese; pasta and pasta sauce; canned fruits and vegetables; holiday specific donations; turkeys and oven stuffer chickens; cranberry sauce; canned milk; stuffing; mashed potatoes; candied yams; pie crust and filling; gravy; salt, pepper and seasoning packets; biscuits; and more. Monetary donations are also accepted and greatly appreciated. Thank you for your generosity.

ECAP, is located at 142-144 Main St. in Tuckahoe. For more information, please contact Don Brown at 337-7768.

Matthew’s Wish toy drive

When Matthew McKinnon was granted a wish from the Make-A-Wish Foundation, he sadly never got the chance to use it. His one wish was to fill an 18-wheeler truck with toys and deliver it to the hospital to surprise the children there during the holidays. Matthew was a patient at Cohen Children’s Medical Center for more than nine years. At the young age of 13, Matthew passed away, leaving his wish unfulfilled.

Matthew’s mother, AnneMarie, along with family and friends, created Matthew’s Wish, which works tirelessly each holiday season to make Matthew’s real wish come true by filling an 18-wheeler with toys and love and delivering them to these special children. Matthew’s Wish is a nonprofit organization that distributes toys during the holidays to children at Cohen Children’s Medical Center, Ronald McDonald House and other worthwhile organizations that care for sick and terminally ill children.

Please send in new, unwrapped, children’s toys and put them in the bins located in the main office at Anne Hutchinson School. We will be collecting these items until Friday, Dec, 11. If you have any questions, please contact Wendy Pregiato at wendyandlarry1@hotmail.com.

Eastchester Historical Society

Annual Victorian Christmas Party

Annmarie Flannery, president of the Eastchester Historical Society, invites everyone to its annual Victorian Christmas Party on Saturday, Dec. 12 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the Room School House at the intersection of California and New Rochelle roads.

The party is free and open to the public. No reservations are required. Refreshments will be provided and people of all ages are encouraged to attend. A Christmas tree decorated with candles and old fashioned decorations will be on display, with 19th-century toys and memorabilia around it. This annual event is a time when children can learn about one of the society’s oldest traditions and adults of all faiths can meet and learn about the exciting historical activities that are planned for 2016.

The Reformed Church

The Reformed Church is located at 180 Pondfield Road in Bronxville. For more information, call 337-6776.

Messiah Sing

On Saturday, Dec. 12 at 4 p.m., The Reformed Church will host its annual Messiah Sing accompanied by professional soloists and a string quartet conducted by Dr. Sándor Szabó. It promises to be an exciting community event. The church invites everyone to join in singing Handel’s great “Oratorio” and be a part of this wonderful family tradition of fellowship and music. Scores will be provided. A reception will follow.

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.

 
LETTER

Letter: Re-elect Dennis Winter for fire commissioner

 

 

To the Editor,

On Dec. 8, Dennis Winter will be running for re-election to the Town of Eastchester Board of Fire Commissioners. Dennis has served as the board’s chairman for the last three years and, under his leadership, the board has achieved many significant accomplishments. These have included:

• The adoption of a 2016 budget with no increase to the current $16.5 million dollar property tax levy.

• The reduction of the fire district property tax levy in 2015.

• Major restorations at two district firehouses.

• An increase in the district’s insurance service office rating, placing the fire district within the top 2 percentile of fire departments nationwide. This rating should result in lower insurance premiums for homeowners within the Eastchester Fire District.

• The restructure of the district’s administrative office and the appointment of a new treasurer and auditor.

I believe the fire district election is especially important this year and I encourage you to vote for Dennis on Tuesday, Dec. 8. His opponent is Cara Piliero, the former district treasurer, whom the board placed on administrative leave in 2013 after discovery of serious accounting irregularities. The board’s investigation of these irregularities found that as treasurer, Piliero billed health insurance premiums to some but not all of the retired firefighters required to pay such premiums, thus costing the fire district an estimated $800,000 in uncollected premiums, and that she failed to bill two fire commissioners who had previously been firefighters for their percentage of health insurance costs, as required. She also paid one retired firefighter an extra $235,200 in disability payments over a 13-year span, and it was found that the QuickBooks records were improperly maintained. Despite this history, Piliero now seeks election to the Eastchester Board of Fire Commissioners.

Dennis is committed to the safety of this community and the sustainability of the Eastchester Fire District. His leadership has been forward thinking, well informed, vigilant and transparent. He has worked hard to make the fire district accountable to Eastchester taxpayers.

Dennis’s value to the district has been recognized by many, and particularly by those who have had the opportunity to work closely with him. He has been endorsed by three of his fellow commissioners and the chief of department, Michael Grogan.

Your vote is critically important in this year’s election.

 

Peter Incledon,

Eastchester fire commissioner