Notes from the Neighborhood

Written by admin on . Posted in Breaking News, Lifestyle, News West Side Spirit, Notes From the Neighborhood west side spirit, West Side Spirit.

Compiled by Sean Creamer & Megan

Just about all of Shakespeare’s characters are iconic symbols of the human condition,
and the same can be said of the heroines within his tales. The experimental Shakespeare ensemble Dark Lady Players will be performing Shakespeare’s Annunciation parodies Sunday, March 25, at 5 p.m. at West-Park Presbyterian Church, 165 W. 86th St. The event is free to attend and will feature actors portraying Juliet, Desdemona, Olivia and Ophelia in part-comic religious allegories for the Virgin Mary.
The Wild Bird Fund’s wildlife rehabilitation and education facility, located on the Upper West Side, will be NYC’s first wildlife rehabilitation and education center. To raise money  for equipment and medical supplies, the fund will host “Wild Bird Fund Takes Flight,” Tuesday April 3, 6:30–9 p.m., at “Birdie” Vanderbilt’s mansion at 60 E. 93rd St. The group is hosting a multitude of events that evening, including a speech from acclaimed author Jonathan Franzen.

Other events will include a self-guided tour of the historic Vanderbilt residence and the Carlton Hobbs antiques gallery, a video tour of the new center, a performance by Dzul Dance, jazz renditions by Jennifer Dudley of the song “It’s for the Birds,” a showing of baby birds, squirrels, owls and hawks, a silent auction and hors d’oeuvres and wine. Tickets are $100 and can be purchased by contacting Beverly Mastropolo at 917-848-0044 or online at

On Thursday, March 29, Dr. Cornel West and the Rev. Osagyefo Sekou will host a discussion about Sekou’s new book, Gods, Gays, and Guns: Essays on
Religion and the Future of Democracy, at West-Park Presbyterian Church, 165 W. 86th St. West is one of the nation’s most prolific authors and a known critical activist who participated at Occupy Wall Street last year. Sekou is considered one of the most influential religious leaders of the current generation. His work as an on-the-ground activist has landed him in post-Katrina New Orleans and the World Culture Center in Berlin. There is no advance ticketing and doors open at 6:30 p.m. For more information, call the Rev. Bob Brashear at 646-541-3329.

Ken Biberaj, the latest candidate to declare for the soon-tobe-vacant Upper West Side City
Council seat, has hired veteran political consultant firm Sheinkopf Ltd. to work on his campaign. The hire signals a serious move from a largely unknown candidate; Hank Sheinkopf has worked on many high-profile political campaigns, like President Bill Clinton’s re-election and Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s last election.

“As an Upper West Sider myself, I’m thrilled to work with a candidate who has such a compelling vision for the neighborhood’s future,” said Sheinkopf in a statement.

“We’re working hard, speaking with voters and small business owners to convey my campaign’s message,” Biberaj said.

Biberaj previously told the West Side Spirit in an interview that one of his top priorities is to get out in the community and introduce himself. Biberaj, who serves as vice-president of the Russian Tea Room and works in commercial real estate, is up against three other candidates who have each served on Community Board 7 and
are arguably more familiar faces on the Upper West Side.


JAPANESE RHYTHM: Taiko drummers from Soh Daiko perform during Japan Fest at the American Museum of Natural History. Visit www. for more photos of the group in action. Photo Credit: Andrew Schwartz


Sitting down to go over the taxes is an event most would equate with torture. However, residents of the Upper West Side can rest easy with several free sessions that condense the processes behind filling out tax forms. The AARP will host a number of sessions at several libraries and community centers during tax season to educate the public about filing their taxes:

• The Bloomingdale Library, 150 W. 100th St., will host classes every Friday through April 13 from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Call 212-222-8030 for more information.

• The Morningside Heights Library, 2900 Broadway, will host a session every Monday and Saturday through April 16 from 10:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Call 212-666- 5099 for more information.

• The Riverside Library, 127 Amsterdam Ave., will hold classes every Thursday through April 12 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Call 212-870-1810 for more information.

• The Project FIND Hamilton Senior Center, 141 W. 73rd St., will hold classes every Tuesday through April 17 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Call 212-787-7710 for more

• The West Side Campaign Against Hunger, 263 W. 86th St., lower level will hold classes every Tuesday through April 17 from 10 a.m. to 12 noon and 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. Call 212-362-3662 for more information.

• Community Tax Aid at Goddard Riverside Community Center at 647 Columbus Ave. near 92 Street will cater to single adults with income of up to $25,000 or families with income of up to $45,000. Bring last year’s tax forms and other relevant documents. Class will be held every Tuesday through April 10 from 6–8 p.m.

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