Tapped In

Written by Marissa Maier on . Posted in Notes From the Neighborhood west side spirit, West Side Spirit.


Compiled by Nora Bosworth, Megan Bungeroth and Alicia Bynum

 

GREEN GROCER

Matthew Solomon and Susan Oyama pack produce for the West Side Senior Supported Food Bag program at Goddard Riverside Center.

BIG BROTHERS BIG SISTERS RACE IN RIVERSIDE PARK
On Saturday, Sept. 29, the eighth annual Big Brothers Big Sisters RBC Race for the Kids will take place in Riverside Park at 72nd Street. This event is part of Nickelodeon’s Worldwide Day of Play. The goal of the 4K run/walk is to bring awareness to the importance of mentoring that the Big Brothers Big Sisters of New York City does for the youth in the community. After the race is over, the day continues with a picnic and other activities to promote healthy lifestyles for both children and adults.

Big Brothers Big Sisters of NYC is hoping to raise $1 million from the RBC Race for the Kids. The money raised will go toward providing one-to-one mentoring relationships for the youths of the five boroughs. The average cost of one Big-Little match is $2,000 a year. Since the beginning of the race, it has raised over $4 million for the organization.

The New York City chapter of Big Brothers Big Sisters is one of the largest youth service organizations in the city, and helps more than 3,500 youths.

If you are interested in taking part in the race, registration is open for individuals and teams. The race starts at 10 a.m., rain or shine. Get more information about registration at RaceForTheKids.org.

DOT LOOKS TO PREVENT ‘DOORING’ CRASHES
The bike-heavy Upper West Side is home to safety features like protected bike lanes, but cyclists are still in constant danger of slamming into a suddenly opened car door. According to Department of Transportation statistics, seven bike riders have been killed this way in the last five years, and now the agency is making prevention of these incidents a priority.

The DOT and the Taxi and Limousine Commission announced this week a joint campaign called “LOOK! for Cyclists,” aimed at educating car passengers. The program places 26,000 orange and white stickers in the city’s yellow-taxi fleet. An ad aired on all the Taxi TV videos will also implore taxi riders to look before they leap out of the car. Hopefully the brightly colored messages will register.

OBAMA CAMPAIGN OFFICE OPENS ON UWS
Last Sunday, local Democrats and elected officials celebrated the grand opening of the Obama 2012 campaign headquarters on the Upper West Side, at 410 Columbus Ave. U.S. Rep. Jerry Nadler, Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer and Assembly Member Linda Rosenthal were on hand to cut the ribbon and kick off the event. The headquarters will serve as a volunteer hub for workers who will focus not only on getting the president re-elected but also on turning crucial Senate and House races—such as Mark Murphy’s campaign against incumbent Republican Rep. Michael Grimm in Brooklyn and Staten Island—to Democratic wins in order to win back a majority.

The campaign office is a joint effort of the Community Free Democrats and the Ansonia Independent Democrats. The groups are hoping to triple the number of volunteers they garnered in 2008.

“Re-electing President Obama is even more important than it was in 2008, because the stakes are even higher,” said CFD president Timothy Foley. “The key location of our campaign headquarters will be a great asset in this effort.”

For more information on volunteering, visit cfdnyc.org. The Community Free Democrats are hosting a presidential debate watch party Oct. 3 at Blondies, at 212 W. 79th St., at 8:30 p.m. RSVP to David at 646-303-4406.

SERIAL BURGLAR SLAPPED WITH LONG SENTENCE
Residents throughout Manhattan can rest a little easier knowing that Shawn McAleese has been sentenced to at least 28 years in state prison. Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance announced that the serial burglar would be serving 28 to 56 years for his crimes.

McAleese pleaded guilty Aug. 27 to eight counts of burglary in the third degree, for tunneling through the walls of residential apartments to steal money, computers and food from neighboring businesses.

Between May 3 and June 30 of this year, McAleese broke into eight residential buildings located throughout Manhattan, including the Upper East Side, the Flatiron District, Hell’s Kitchen, Murray Hill and Central Harlem. He entered apartments to gain access to nearby businesses, digging through walls and entering through alleys not easily seen from the street. He repeatedly stole money from registers, and took food and liquor when cash wasn’t available.

“[McAleese] not only violated the sanctity of private homes by breaking into residences, but also used those apartments as launch pads to steal from nearby businesses,” said Vance in a statement. “Theft from a business doesn’t end at emptying the cash register—it jeopardizes the job security of those who work there because it affects the bottom line.”

NYPD PUSHES PUBLIC TO I.D. ELECTRONICS
The NYPD offers a free program, called “Operation ID,” to engrave unique serial numbers onto portable electronics and register the owner’s information with the Police Department. The service is intended to deter thefts of items like laptops, MP3 players, tablets and smartphones by making the identification clear to would-be thieves. Items with these police-issued numbers can be more difficult to sell in illegal markets, making them less desirable targets. It could also potentially reunite a victim with stolen property if it’s ever recovered. If you’d like to participate in the program, call the 20th or 24th precinct’s crime prevention officer or contact the NYPD Community Affairs Bureau directly at 646-610-5323.

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