Category Archives: Uncategorized

LETTER

Letter: A walk in the park

 

 

To the Editor, 

Rye Town Park is located in the City of Rye and serves neighboring communities. It is a beautiful park and beach with eateries. It is a nice place to swim, sunbath, picnic or relax. In order to increase revenue, eligible communities should require people to obtain a permit at a nominal fee and charge those a fee while entering the park in addition to parking fees and beach fees. Occupants in vehicles with valid permits could pay when entering the parking gate. The parking lot could be paved right through to Forest Avenue not exceeding the width of the current paved area.

A security booth at both Dearborn and Rye Beach avenues is an effective way to collect entry fees.

Lastly a shuttle bus should run continuously from Harrison and Port Chester train stations to the Dearborn Avenue entrance. Additionally, an enclosed walkway from the entrance would allow people to line up for the bus and provide safety from the weather.

 

Kent Iarocci, 
Rye

 

Rye-City-Hall-8

Breaking News: Rye hires new city manager

By CHRISTIAN FALCONE

The Rye City Council has hired Marcus Serrano as its new city manager.

His contract was expected to be agreed to by the city’s governing body at its June 10 meeting, after press time.

Serrano currently serves as the village administrator of Dobbs Ferry, a position he has held for the past six years, according to Rye City Mayor Joe Sack, a Republican. Once Serrano’s employment contract with Rye is approved, he has a 60-day notice provision in his current contract with Dobbs Ferry that will delay his start date in Rye to approximately Aug. 11. Once Serrano takes over the city manager position, Eleanor Militana, the interim city manager, will transition back into her role as assistant city manager, the mayor said.

Rye will pay Serrano $195,000 annually to manage the city’s day-to-day operations; former City Manager Frank Culross, who retired at the end of April, was being paid $198,500 a year. As part of Serrano’s contract, Sack also said the new city manager will contribute to his healthcare as both an employee of the city and in retirement. His retirement contribution will be 25 percent.

“We’re very happy with bringing Marcus to Rye,” Sack told the Review today. “I think he will help Rye remain on the right track.”

What made Serrano stand out during the city’s interview process to find a new city manager, according to Sack, was the amount of references he provided to the City Council. Sack said Serrano offered 30 references in total. “We called them all,” the mayor said. “They were from all walks of life. Everyone said he was great.”

Sack said Serrano was born in the Bronx and has spent 30 years in Westchester working in various administrative locations including Peekskill and Ossining prior to his tenure in Dobbs Ferry. While employed in Peekskill, Serrano rose from deputy city manager to acting city manager during a 10-year run with that city.

“I think [Marcus] is an open and honest person and that’s what Rye needs right now,” Sack said.

The city manager position has plagued Rye for some time.

In April 2014, then City Manager Scott Pickup resigned from his position after accepting a separation agreement with the city. Pickup had been associated with several high profile scandals since taking over the position in 2010.

Sack said some of the candidates this time around were aware of the recent history regarding the position and subsequent controversies in Rye but none expressed concern about it impeding their ability to potentially do the job.

“Those situations were individual situations,” Sack said. “They weren’t systemic. Rye remains a prestigious community.”

Serrano currently lives in Peekskill and the belief is that he will continue to reside there. His contract with Rye does not include any provision requiring him to relocate to Rye.

CONTACT: chris@hometwn.com

 

A Rye player speeds towards the net on May 14. Photos/Mike Smith

Rye Playoff Roundup

Rye and Byram Hills players battle for a groundball on May 16. Rye came back to defeat the Bobcats with a strong second half performance. Photo/Bobby Begun

Rye and Byram Hills players battle for a groundball on May 16. Rye came back to defeat the Bobcats with a strong second half performance. Photo/Bobby Begun

Girls Lacrosse
5/19 Somers d.
Rye 10-7

Despite a furious second half comeback and a milestone goal for Charlotte Tucci, Rye’s bid for a berth in the section finals came to an end on Tuesday when it fell to a solid Tuskers’ team 10-7.

Rye trailed 8-3 at the half but mounted strong resistance in the latter portion of the game, nearly evening the score with the No. 2 seed Somers. Among Rye’s highlights of the game was Tucci’s 200th career goal.

Somers will play for the Class B title on May 21, after press time, at Torne Valley Field in Suffern, N.Y.

 

A Rye player speeds towards the net on May 14. Photos/Mike Smith

A Rye player speeds towards the net on May 14. Photos/Mike Smith

5/16 Rye d.
Byram Hills14-10

Rye staved off a potential upset against the Bobcats in Saturday’s quarterfinal round matchup, thanks to a tremendous performance from Molly DeCaro who tallied five goals on the afternoon.

Rye trailed 7-5 in the second half, but capitalized on some costly Byram Hills penalties to take the lead. In addition to DeCaro, Rye also got fine efforts from Tucci, who had two goals, and Caroline Neave who scored three. Garnet goalie Micheline DiNardo did her part, notching eight saves in the win.

Boys Lacrosse

5/16 Somers d.
Rye 8-7

No. 11 seed Somers scored a big upset over the third-seeded Garnets on Saturday, with Tuskers’ standout Andrew Gross netting the game-winner with just 1:40 left to play. Noah Spaeth led the Garnets with three goals, but it was Somers who moved on to the Class B semifinals, where they fell to John Jay on May 19.

A Rye player controls the ball against Byram Hills on May 16. Rye fell to Somers in the quarterfinals. Photo/Bobby Begun

A Rye player controls the ball against Byram Hills on May 16. Rye fell to Somers in the quarterfinals. Photo/Bobby Begun

 

5/14 Rye d.
Pearl River 15-6

In the Class B first round, Rye’s hot start was enough to push them past the Pirates as they cruised to a nine-point win. Rye’s offensive balance was the key to this one, as the Garnets got three goals from Seamus Carroll, and two goals from Mike Dugan, Chris Kovacs, Billy and Peter Chabot.

 

Boys Baseball

Rye’s road to defending their 2014 Class A championship starts with the top overall seed in the postseason. The Garnets didn’t suffer their first loss of the season until May 12, when they fell to Byram Hills—who beat the Garnets again two days later—but they have still done enough to make themselves postseason favorites.

Rye will kick off their sectional campaign with a May 21 first round game against the winner of the Pearl River-Tappan Zee outbracket game.

A Rye lacrosse player battles with a Pearl River defender on May 14. Rye won its first round game 15-6, but fell in the Class B quarterfinals two days later.

A Rye lacrosse player battles with a Pearl River defender on May 14. Rye won its first round game 15-6, but fell in the Class B quarterfinals two days later.

WGO

What’s going on in New Rochelle 5-22-2015

New Rochelle Public Library

 

Meet a Yankee great

On Thursday, May 28 at 6 p.m., Mariano Rivera, New York Yankee great and 13-time all-star, will visit the New Rochelle Public Library. Tickets are on sale now. There are two options available; a chance to meet Mariano and receive a signed copy of his biography “The Closer,” or hear a presentation by Mariano, enjoy a V.I.P. reception and also receive a signed copy of the book. The proceeds from all ticket sales will directly benefit the Friends of the New Rochelle Public Library. This event is part of a fundraising effort to help the Friends build a bookstore in the Library’s lobby.

Homework help

Homework help is available at the library for elementary and middle school students. Children in grades kindergarten through grade 5 can drop-in to the Children’s Room on the first floor and students in grades 6 through 8 can visit the Young Adult area on the second floor for help on the following days:

Mondays, Tuesdays and Thursdays: 3 p.m. and 7:40 p.m.

Wednesdays: 3 p.m. and 5:40 p.m.

This is a collaboration among the New Rochelle Public Library, New Rochelle Youth Bureau and Monroe College.

Free Medicare counseling

Whether you’re about to enroll in Medicare or are a current Medicare recipient, you can get help with your benefits and coverage questions at the Senior Benefits Information Center at The New Rochelle Public Library, Fridays at 10 a.m., except holidays. No appointment necessary.

Meet with trained counselors to get more information about:

• Medicare Part A (in-patient) and Part B (out-patient) coverage

• Part D prescription drug coverage

• Medicare Advantage plans, with or without drug coverage

• Medicare Savings plans, extra help and EPIC for seniors with more limited incomes.

Some assistance is also available for those who are looking for other financial benefit programs, such as HEAP, Home Energy Assistance Program, and food stamps. If you can’t visit the library in person, you can leave a message on the SBIC helpline at 231-3260 with your name, number, and whether your interest is in Medicare services or other benefits, and a counselor will return your call within two business days. You can ask your question online by emailing SBIC@wlsmail.org

For a listing of all 10 SBIC centers, please visit westchesterlibraries.org/senior-benefits-information-centers, which includes information for clients in Spanish.

New Rochelle schools

“On stage at Carnegie Hall”

On Wednesday, June 3 at 7 p.m., New Rochelle’s outstanding student musicians from New Rochelle High School will be performing “On stage at Carnegie Hall.” This is an event that you do not want to miss.

Our students, who have been practicing for months, will be welcomed on stage by Master of Ceremonies Michael Kaiser (Class of 1971), the former president of the Kennedy Center. If you are a parent, grandparent, community member or business owner, please participate in this event by attending and/or purchasing an ad in our commemorative journal. The concert is a wonderful way to introduce young people to the joy of music at one of the world’s iconic venues.

The journal/memory book is also a perfect way to show your public support of this concert. The concert is sponsored by the New Rochelle Fund for Educational Excellence, a nonprofit organization that provides educational enrichment programs throughout the school district. “On Stage at Carnegie Hall” promises to be a thrilling night for our community. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit nrhs.nred.org.

New Rochelle Recreation Department

Memorial Day parade

On Sunday, May 24, there will be a Memorial Day service and flag replacement on graves at Beechwood Cemetery at 9 a.m. Those who wish to attend should meet at the main entrance.

On Monday, May 25, there will be a Memorial Day service and wreath laying at 10 a.m. at Memorial Plaza, at the corner of Memorial Highway and Main Street. There will be a water service at Glen Island Park followed by a veterans appreciation event, barbecue, all day concert and food from noon to 5 p.m. Bring blankets and chairs.

Canteen

Designed for those 16 years old and older on Friday nights emphasizing socialization with a dual emphasis on independence and cooperation through involvement in the community. The program includes special events, games, life skill development with participant input encouraging the direction of the program. Door-to-door transportation is available. Program meets at the Hugh A. Doyle Senior Center. For more information, contact Nina Shawn Gainor at 654-2116.

Full-day summer camp

This is a full-day camp program featuring sessions in arts and crafts, group games, sports instruction, music, performing arts and character building. Campwide special events and themed days are scheduled throughout the season. Lunch and snacks will be provided through the Youth Nutrition Program. Early drop-off for a limited number of campers is available on a first-come, first-served basis for an additional cost of $165. Camp runs Monday, July 6 through Friday, Aug. 14 from 9:30 a.m. through 3:30 p.m. at two locations: William B. Ward Elementary School and Jefferson Elementary School. Different options are available at each camp. Fees range from $580 to $600 if you register before May 22. For more information, contact Nina Shawn Gainor at 654-2116.

Youth swimming classes

This program is an excellent introduction to swimming. It is designed to be intense and improve swimming skills fast and effectively over two-day sessions. Children ages 6 through 12 are welcome. The student to instructor ratio is 1:5 for beginners or 1:7 for higher levels. These classes are 45 minutes long and designed to allow children to progress at their own rate. Program is open to New Rochelle residents only for a fee of $100 per person per session. For more information, visit newrochelleny.com.

 

Date: Saturdays and Sundays,

July 12 through Aug. 3

Session I: 10 a.m to 10:45 a.m.

Session II: 11 a.m to 11:45 a.m.

Location: Lincoln Pool

New Rochelle Senior Center

World Elder Abuse Awareness Day

On June 15, from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. join us for a screening of “An Age for Justice: Confronting Elder Abuse in America” at the Hugh A. Doyle Senior Center, located at 94 Davis Ave., in New Rochelle. The film screening will be followed by a discussion led by Gary Brown, assistant attorney general and chairman of the Wetschester Elder Abuse Coalition. For more information, contact 235-2363.

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

 
An Eastchester player attempts to turn a double play in the team’s 6-4 win. Photos/Bobby Begun

Eagles topple New Ro

An Eastchester player attempts to turn a double play in the team’s 6-4 win. Photos/Bobby Begun

An Eastchester player attempts to turn a double play in the team’s 6-4 win. Photos/Bobby Begun

By MIKE SMITH
On May 4, the Eastchester Eagles picked up their ninth victory of the season with a come-from-behind 6-4 win against a solid New Rochelle team. As the Eagles gear up for the home stretch, head coach Chris Walpole believes that Monday’s game could serve as a confidence-booster for the 9-4 ball club.

Trailing 3-1 in the bottom of the fourth inning, the Eagles got a boost from the bat of Victoria Biancavilla, who blasted a solo shot to lead off the frame. The Eagles would go on to score five runs in the inning, which was more than enough to put them on top for good. This season, Biancavilla is hitting at a team-leading .417 clip and also leads the Eagles with 15 RBIs.

“Victoria hit that home run and that really started it for us,” Walpole said. “We’ve been struggling to score runs this year so that was good to see.”

Walpole said that although strikeouts have been the team’s main problem offensively this year, the Eagles simply had a better approach to their at bats against the Huguenots.  Daniela Chiodi led the team with two hits on the day, while Alyssa Cermele’s two-run single in the fourth inning also provided a spark for the team.

“We just put the ball in play and didn’t strike out,” Walpole said. “They made a couple of key errors and that made the difference.”

An Eastchester batter takes a cut against New Rochelle. Eastchester topped the Huguenots 6-4.

An Eastchester batter takes a cut against New Rochelle. Eastchester topped the Huguenots 6-4.

Eagles’ hurler Kristen Farrell proved effective on the mound as well, surrendering only one earned run in seven innings of work on Monday. Farrell allowed 11 hits, but was able to avoid a big New Rochelle inning to hold on for the win.

This year, Farrell has picked up four wins while posting an ERA of just 1.02. Farrell and teammate Jess Bechetti have anchored the Eagles’ pitching staff, combining for 75 strikeouts in 88 innings, while holding opponents’ batting averages to under .300.

“Kristen has really been throwing great for us this year,” Walpole said. “She hasn’t walked a lot of batters, which has been a strength.”

The Eagles will take on Byram Hills, Port Chester and Rye this week, all after press time, and will also have to contend with a powerful North Rockland club when they visit the Red Raiders on May 11. Last week, North Rockland, led by ace Kayla McDermott, topped the Huguenots 4-1.

“I think North Rockland is the top-ranked team in the section,” Walpole said. “So I hope we’re ready for that test.”

Contact: sports@hometwn.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A tribute to Andrew Gurgitano is set up at the pitchers mound at Silver Lake Park on May 2. Gurgitano, a junior and Harrison pitcher, died unexpectedly on Nov. 8 of last year.

Gurgitano remembered

A tribute to Andrew Gurgitano is set up at the pitchers mound at Silver Lake Park on May 2. Gurgitano, a junior and Harrison pitcher, died unexpectedly on Nov. 8 of last year.

A tribute to Andrew Gurgitano is set up at the pitchers mound at Silver Lake Park on May 2. Gurgitano, a junior and Harrison pitcher, died unexpectedly on Nov. 8 of last year.

By MIKE SMITH
On May 2, the communities of Harrison and Rye banded together to celebrate the life of a young man taken too soon, as they participated in the first-ever Andrew Gurgitano Memorial Baseball Game, in honor of the Harrison junior who died unexpectedly on Nov. 8, 2014. 

Hundreds of Gurgitano’s friends, family members, team-mates and neighbors flocked to Silver Lake Park in West Harrison to take in the game between the two foes that also served as a fitting tribute to Gurgitano’s life.

Harrison’s Mike Pizzutello and Rye’s Sam Lubeck accept the Andrew Gurgitano Memorial Scholarship Award. The award was presented on May 2 to two seniors who best exemplify Andrew Gurgitano’s passion for life and baseball. Photos/Mike Smith

Harrison’s Mike Pizzutello and Rye’s Sam Lubeck accept the Andrew Gurgitano Memorial Scholarship Award. The award was presented on May 2 to two seniors who best exemplify Andrew Gurgitano’s passion for life and baseball. Photos/Mike Smith

“I think the turnout was a testament to how well liked Andrew was, not only by his friends and classmates, but by the community at-large,” said Harrison head coach Marco DiRuocco, whom Gurgitano played for last year. ”There [were] a lot of people from around Westchester that came out to the game to honor this great young man who loved the game of baseball.”

Prior to the first pitch, Rye and Harrison’s teams lined the base paths for a brief ceremony that underscored the importance of the day. The Garnets and Huskies were joined on the field by two of Gurgitano’s travel teams, as well as the modified, freshman and JV baseball teams from Harrison High School.

Harrison’s Mike Pizzutello and Rye’s Sam Lubeck were selected as the recipients of the inaugural Andrew Gurgitano Scholarship awards, which were presented to two senior baseball players that best embodied Gurgitano’s passion for life and baseball.

“It was just such an honor to get that award because there are a lot of great guys in the program it could have gone to,” Pizzutello said. “It felt amazing to be able to go out there and represent Andrew and his family.”

Harrison coach Marco DiRuocco and Rye coach Mike Bruno embrace before the two teams compete in the first-ever Andrew Gurgitano Memorial Game.

Harrison coach Marco DiRuocco and Rye coach Mike Bruno embrace before the two teams compete in the first-ever Andrew Gurgitano Memorial Game.

For the two communities, this newly created award is yet another example of the two rivals coming together during times of strife. Rye’s football, basketball and baseball booster clubs donated $1500 to the Gurgitano scholarship fund, and one player from each community will be honored with the fund every year.

“When I spoke to Marco [DiRuocco] over the winter, we both agreed that we wanted this to be like the Chris Mello Award [which is given out annually before the Rye-Harrison football game in remembrance of the former Garnet standout who died during the attacks on 9/11],” Rye coach Mike Bruno said. “I think it’s a great rivalry across all the sports, but you get caught up in the rivalry and when something like this happens, you realize it’s just a game after all.”

DiRuocco echoed Bruno’s sentiments.

“It’s pretty special when you see these two towns come together,” he said.

At the end of the day, however, there was still a baseball game to be played, just like Gurgitano would have wanted, DiRuocco added.

Harrison’s varsity team lines up on the first base line during a pregame ceremony on May 2. The players all donned Gurgitano’s number in honor of their late teammate.

Harrison’s varsity team lines up on the first base line during a pregame ceremony on May 2. The players all donned Gurgitano’s number in honor of their late teammate.

The Huskies battled gamely against the undefeated Garnets, falling 3-2 despite a brilliant one-hit performance from Harrison hurler Steven Pesce.

“We could tell our guys were amped up, they went out and played with all their hearts,” DiRuocco said. “It was a special evening, a great way to honor to Andrew, and that’s all we could have asked for.”

Contact: sports@hometwn.com

 
WGO

What’s Going on in Harrison 4-10-2015

English conversation group

Let’s speak English, non-native speakers. Practice your English and make new friends in an informal, volunteer-led setting and learn about the Harrison library too. There is no need to register or sign up. Group meets on Mondays from 11 a.m. to noon at Uncle Henry’s Bar and Grill, 309 Halstead Ave.

West Harrison Library events

Jeffrey Friedberg

On Thursday, April 16 from 10:30 a.m. to 11 a.m. Jeffrey Friedberg will perform a fun and funky musical experience for children young and old. Friedberg is a certified music therapist who entertains with guitar and banjo. Kids laugh and sing and dance along. For more
information, visit harrisonpl.org.

Story Time

Great stories, music and fun for ages 1 to 5. No registration necessary, bring your friends. Mondays from 10:30 a.m. to 11 a.m.

Train Time

Choo-Choo! Come and play with Thomas and friends. We have sets of toy trains for everyone to enjoy. Tuesdays from 10 a.m. to noon.

Computer orientation

One hour class for the computerized library catalog and internet. Tuesdays from
10 a.m. to 11 a.m.

Homework help

Homework help is available. Accomplished high school student volunteers help students in grades 1 to 5 with their homework. Tuesdays 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Mahjong class

Join the Mahjong class at Leo Mintzer Center, across street from the West Harrison
Library, every Wednesday afternoon at 1:30 pm. For beginners and people who need to
refresh their skills.

Mother Goose Time

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

Crochet and knitting club

Come anytime between 10 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. on Saturdays to knit and/or crochet, meet new friends, share your skills and knowledge, and have a good time. No registration needed. Bring hooks, needles and yarn or practice with ours. Walk-ins are welcome. Saturdays 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.

Story Time and craft

Listen to stories and create a fun craft with Manhattanville volunteers. Program for ages 3 to 5 on Saturdays from 10:30 a.m. to noon.

Harrison Recreation

Archery

Basic beginning instruction in target archery, including safety, shooting techniques, scoring, tackles care and maintenance. Ten, one-hour sessions starting Tuesday, April 14 from 4:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. or Sunday, April 12 from 9 a.m. to 10 a.m., at
Veteran’s Park. Registration fee is $85. Please make check payable to Town/Village of Harrison.

Summer camp

Four-day camps offering numerous sports, arts and crafts, swimming, music and weekly special events. Grades 1 through 8 are eligible to apply. Registration fee is $475, $250 for a second child and $175 for third and subsequent children. Please make check payable to Town/Village of Harrison. Deadline for the program is May 7, at which time campers will be placed on a wait list with no guarantee of a spot. Late fee is $50 per child after May 7 and $100 after June 18. Camp starts on June 29 and runs through Aug. 7.

Baseball opening day parade

On Friday, April 24, the Harrison Recreation Department will host an Opening Day parade. The parade line up begins at 6 p.m., at Veterans Park on Crystal Street and ends at Harrison Avenue School. There will be opening ceremonies and a barbeque to follow.

Children’s tennis

Jeffrey Greene, a longtime Westchester resident, successful college coach and a highly-ranked USTA-Eastern Section Senior Men’s tournament veteran competitor heads up the Harrison Recreation Department tennis program for children starting the week of April 6. Classes are for grades 3 through 9 and located at the Harrison Avenue School tennis courts. Classes meet twice a week for eight weeks. Class size is limited. Register at the Solazzo Center Recreation office at 270 Harrison Ave. For additional details, call 670-3179.

Adult tennis lessons

Two sessions will be held at the Harrison High School tennis courts. Session 1 is on Saturday and Sunday mornings beginning April 11 and April 12. Session 2 is on Saturday and Sunday mornings beginning May 16 and May 17. Beginner classes meet for one hour, from 9:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m., with a fee of $150 for the five-week session. Advanced classes meet for one-and-a-half hours from 10:30 a.m. to noon, with a fee of $225 for the five-week session. Beginner classes will concentrate on grips, swings, strokes, footwork, and other techniques and mechanics. Advanced classes have a pre-requisite of beginner knowledge and will focus on drills, games and match-play. Checks should be made payable to Jeff Greene and can be delivered to the Solazzo Center Recreation office at 270 Harrison Ave. For additional details, call 670-3179.

Harrison Senior Citizen clubs

The West Harrison group meets on Thursday, from noon through 3 p.m. at the Leo Mintzer Community Center at 251 Underhill Ave., to discuss items of interest, play bingo and plan activities coming up in the near future. Dues are $24 per year. Refreshments are served.

The downtown group meets every Friday from noon through 3 p.m. at the Veterans Memorial Building, 210 Halstead Ave. Dues are $24 per year. Refreshments are served.

We also have a drop-in center at the Harrison Community Center, 216 Halstead Ave., available Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., where you may enjoy television, cards and socializing. Tuesday exercise classes from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. at the Harrison Community Center. Both groups participate in many activities including luncheons, day trips, overnight trips, special movie dates, exercise and line dancing classes, just to name a few. All seniors are welcomed to join the nearest center and to participate in all its activities. For further information on recreation and social activities, call the senior center at 670-3000, extension 3172.

Marshlands Conservancy

Poetry exhibit

If nature and beautiful landscapes inspire you to write poetry, County Executive Rob Astorino is encouraging you to showcase your work and share it with others during the Marshlands Conservancy poetry exhibit this spring. Dates for submission are Saturday and Sunday, April 10 and 11, from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., at the conservancy in Rye. There is a limit of three works per person.

The exhibit will open with a reception for the participating poets and the public on Sunday, April 19, beginning at 2 p.m. Poetry readings will be available on request. The exhibit will be on view weekends only, from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., through Sunday, June 7.

The exhibit is co-sponsored by the Friends of Marshlands Conservancy. The Marshlands
Conservancy is located on the Boston Post  Road in Rye.

For more information, call Marshlands at 835-4466 or visit westchestergov.com/parks.

Deadline for our What’s Going On section is every Thursday at 3 p.m. Though space
is not guaranteed, we will do our best to accommodate your listing. Please send
all items to news@hometwn.com.

 
NOT TO BAD

Column: A descent into madness

Well, it happened again. My bracket is an absolute mess.

It didn’t take long for me to realize that this wasn’t going to be my year. By the end of day two of the tournament, I’d lost eight teams in my field of 32. Two days later, my entire West Region was in shambles.

Given the number of shocking upsets, though, I remained cautiously optimistic. Not so much in my own ability to pick the games, but in the fact that everyone else’s bracket was surely busted as well. Alas, there were few brackets as bad off as mine was.

Heading into this week’s Final Four round, it would seem virtually impossible for me to escape with a tournament win. But despite my continued lack of success here, it’s been a pretty fun ride.

The tournament, as always, has had its share of great moments.

From Georgia State’s first round upset against Baylor—complete with injured Panthers’ coach Ron Hunter falling out of his chair after his son hit the deciding shot, to Notre Dame’s near upset of Kentucky last Saturday, there has been no shortage of excitement this year.

In some ways, having such a rough time with my bracket has been a blessing. Instead of hanging on each game worried that a late-run might bury my chances of winning, I have been able to simply watch the games as a basketball fan—with no rooting interest. Had I still been in the hunt for an illusive title, I would’ve been rooting for Kentucky—home of the one-and-done and just about everything that is wrong with college basketball—to win. After all, I, and many others, have them going all the way.

But freeing myself from that sort of bottom-line thinking allowed me to root for an upset win for the Irish and senior guard Jerian Grant, a fifth-year player who has undoubtedly helped his NBA chances by sticking around in the college ranks for a while.

Of course, maybe this is just a defense mechanism; my way of dealing with the tragedy that befalls my picks each year. I’m used to it by now. But win or lose, brackets intact or not, March Madness is one of the best times of the year for a sports fan.

At least I’ll keep telling myself that. One of these days, I’m going to win this thing.

I deserve my one shining moment.

 

Follow Mike on Twitter @LiveMike_Sports

Once again, Mike Smith will not be winning any March Madness bracket pools. Even so, he’s been enjoying this year’s tournament immensely.

Once again, Mike Smith will not be winning any March Madness bracket pools. Even so, he’s been enjoying this year’s tournament immensely.

 

 
Avery LaBarbera looks for an open teammate against Rye on Feb. 1. LaBarbera and the Huskies nabbed the fifth-seed in Class A.

Basketball eyes playoffs

Harrison’s girls and boys basketball teams are both preparing for their sectional openers this week, as they both were rewarded for their stellar regular seasons with first-round home games on Feb. 12. Though neither team would know their first-round opponent as of press time, big things are expected from both squads this year.

Avery LaBarbera looks for an open teammate against Rye on Feb. 1. LaBarbera and the Huskies nabbed the fifth-seed in Class A.

Avery LaBarbera looks for an open teammate against Rye on Feb. 1. LaBarbera and the Huskies nabbed the fifth-seed in Class A.

At 12-6 on the year, the girls’ squad earned a fifth-seed and will take on the winner of the Lakeland-Panas outbracket game, while the boys, who finished 13-5, held onto the fourth seed in Class A with a win in their regular season finale against Fox Lane.

“We had been following the brackets online,” boys’ coach Gary Chiarella said. “So we knew heading into that last game that we were going to either be the four or five seed.”

Both the boys’ and girls’ teams were tested in the final days of the regular season campaign, with the girls tangling with teams like Tappan Zee, Rye and Fox Lane, while the boys took down the fourth-seeded Class AA team on Feb. 7. According to Chiarella, the 65-59 win over the Foxes has his team riding high into the first-round game, where they will either see John Jay or rival Rye.

“I’m very happy with how we’ve played,” he said. “I think that the game against Fox Lane was the best we’ve played all year.”

Zach Evans sets up the Harrison offense during an early-season game against Croton-Harmon. The Huskies enter this week’s sectional playoffs as the No. 4 seed in Class A. Photos/Mike Smith

Zach Evans sets up the Harrison offense during an early-season game against Croton-Harmon. The Huskies enter this week’s sectional playoffs as the No. 4 seed in Class A. Photos/Mike Smith

The girls will play at 4:30 p.m. on Thursday, after press time, while the boys’ game will follow as the nightcap. After a Monday, which saw both teams off due to weather, the two squads were back in the gym on Tuesday getting ready for the playoff push.

“We’ve just been working on conditioning and making sure we’re prepared for late-game situations,” Chiarella said. “You get into those
situations, things happen fast, so we want to make
sure we know what we’re going to do.”

-Reporting by Mike Smith

Purchase College will use a $765,000 state grant to install infrastructure to deal with rainwater which cannot be absorbed into the ground. File photo

College grant to fix stormwater runoff

Purchase College will use a $765,000 state grant to install infrastructure to deal with rainwater which cannot be absorbed into the ground. File photo

Purchase College will use a $765,000 state grant to install infrastructure to deal with rainwater which cannot be absorbed into the ground. File photo

By Alina Suriel
Purchase College’s effort to encourage on-campus environmental sustainability is paying off in a big way, as the college just received $765,000 in a state grant to further increase its green infrastructure.

The grant comes from the Regional Economic Development Council created by Gov. Andrew Cuomo, a Democrat, in 2011 to stimulate job creation and community development. The money was received by Purchase on Jan. 6 and will go toward building bio-retention swales and installing porous path pavers to manage stormwater runoff in areas where water collects after heavy rainfall.

Purchase receives an average of 49.35 inches of rainfall per year, according to Tom Kelly, the school’s senior energy manager. Although Kelly could not explain the reasons behind the higher number, this is much more than the average 40 inches reported in New York State by a recent study conducted by Cornell University.

“Sustainability is one of the pillars of the college’s strategic plan,” Kelly said. “This affirms the college’s commitment to the environment by proactively addressing local stormwater issues.”

The bio-retention swales, which are landforms dug out and filled with rocks, soil and vegetation to capture rainwater and filter out impurities, will be placed near the parking lots on the south side of campus near the performing arts center to divert water away from impervious ground.

The college will also be installing large stones with sand in between porous pavement, or constructed walkway that allows water to seep below the surface, on the path in between the on-site Starbucks coffee shop and one of the main student dormitories.

According to Kelly, a feasibility study and consultant for the project put the overall construction budget at around $550,000, but he said he won’t have an exact figure until all contracting bids for the project have been turned in. Whatever grant money is leftover will go toward design and overhead costs and scientific equipment for students to use when they collect data on the water affected by the installation. Kelly estimates that the college will begin circulating a request for proposals in mid-April, but before that can happen officials must complete and submit a substantial bit of paperwork to the state.

The new additions to its green infrastructure will effectively serve as a living laboratory for Purchase students, according to Chris Gavlik, director of facilities and capital planning. Faculty members of the college’s Environmental Studies Program will be studying water quality within the project area and compare it to water from other sources. Senior interns in that program will collect field samples and conduct analyses which will be used in studies used for the school’s Stormwater Master Plan.

Elizabeth Dumont, a former biology major who received her degree in May 2014, told the Review that learning outside the classroom in similar real world situations was a great asset to her education. She said her former professors are experienced scientists themselves and this allows them to help students gain first-hand knowledge of real world research techniques.

“We take all these different steps to becoming scientists, and these people can do it, and they have done it, and you get to work with them,” Dumont said.

Besides its newest plan to increase green infrastructure, the administration at Purchase College encourages environmental consciousness in a number of other coordinated efforts. A composting machine which can handle up to 460 gallons of food waste was installed in one of the main dining halls in the winter of 2013, and the college uses biodegradable napkins, utensils and coffee cups. The school also encourages students to recycle usable electronics and supplies at the end of the semester by donating to a storage system call FreeNew, in which goods are kept in secure outdoor pods to be donated to incoming students of the next semester.

Brittany Bollenbach, a former Purchase student who was originally responsible for implementing the FreeNew program, said that while Purchase was taking big steps toward sustainability, she personally could think of many ways in which the school could improve even further. She cited the school’s use of inefficient light fixtures and the school administration’s practice of leaving the lights on overnight in student buildings as examples of energy waste.

“They’re doing as good as an institution of that size can do currently, but they’re other things they can do,” she said. “I think they have made some good strides, but we can all do better.”

CONTACT: alina@hometwn.com