Shopping for charity - Pre-holiday’s a good time to scope out the various charity shops for gifts. And this week it’s Fashion for Action time at Housing Works Chelsea Thrift Shop, 143 West 17th Street. Public Sales Days are Thurs-Sat, Nov 11 - 15, from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., where more than 100 brands are 50-80% off and fashions are straight from the closets of 11 fashion icons. Housing Works works to end AIDS and homelessness. So shop.
Reader readback - In response to last column reprising Barbara Chocky’s life and her role as the Conscience of the Community, community leaders and others commented. Here, slightly edited, are two. One is from former District Leader Pauline Dana Bashian - “Great column!! I was at the memorial service for Barbara. It was very moving, and everyone who spoke was very complimentary. A number of her friends’ children spoke about the perfect gifts she always gave them. She was included in holiday dinners and all kinds of family celebrations.” And Barbara’s fellow CB 8 Board Member Will Sanchez posted what he says was “Barbara Chocky’s only appearance on ‘Community Board 8 Speaks” - and he included a link to a 2010 segment with then CB 8 member David Rosenstein, who has also since passed. In an online exchange, I thanked Will Sanchez for the memory. Here’s the link: https://youtu.be/aKy6wQCUOFk
Parks and Recreation, UES style - NYC Parks Dept. Commissioner Gabrielle Fialkoff joined Manhattan BP Gale Brewer, Council Member Ben Kallos, CB 8 Parks and Recreation Committee Co-Chair Barry Schneider, and community members to break ground on improvements to the sitting area in John Jay Park. The park, situated on the East River, is named for jurist and statesman John Jay (1745-1829). Come Fall 2022, it’s expected that the renovation will be completed. So look for a transformed space with new pavements, benches and drainage, along with green space which will take the place of asphalt areas with plant beds. The John Jay Park pool opened between 1940 and 1942 as part of a Work Projects Administration (WPA) project. The park also features basketball, tennis and handball courts, a playground that was fully renovated in 2011 and two Douglas Abdell welded steel sculptures. Good things happen when there’s funding (thanks to $650,00 from Kallos) and participation of the community, including the East 79th Street Neighborhood Association and its founder Betty Cooper Wallerstein.