Stuy Town teen will attempt swim around Manhattan

Simona Dwass, pictured preparing for an NYCSwim event last year (Photo courtesy of Simona Dwass)

Simona Dwass, pictured preparing for an NYCSwim event last year (Photo courtesy of Simona Dwass)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

A Stuy Town resident is preparing for a marathon this weekend, but she isn’t going to need her shoes.

Recent high school graduate Simona Dwass, who Town & Village readers might remember as the intrepid swimmer who freestyled the 17 miles from the East River near East 26th Street to Coney Island last summer in a record-breaking four hours and 24 minutes, will be attempting to swim around the entire island of Manhattan this Saturday in the Manhattan Island Marathon Swim. The feat is more than ten miles longer than the swim to Coney Island at 28.5 miles but Dwass is confident in her stamina to finish the race. She said that the only challenge she’s anticipating is the water temperature.

“If the water is too cold I might not be able to make it,” she said. “Even if it’s 73 degrees, it would be hard to swim for seven hours. The currents are supposed to be strong the entire swim so it would just be an issue of the temperature.”

Eighteen-year-old Dwass was the youngest person to complete the trip to Coney Island, known as the Rose Pitonof Swim, and she is pushing boundaries again, being one year younger than the usual age requirement of 19 for the marathon swim. The teen said she was excited to learn last year that the competition’s namesake was 17 at the time of the race, just like she was at her attempt.

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Dollar-and-up store takes over former Beehives & Buzzcuts space

 J’s 99 Cents & Up has opened up in a First Avenue Space where the owners of Tal Bagels had previously hoped to put a smoked fish shop. (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

J’s 99 Cents & Up has opened up in a First Avenue Space where the owners of Tal Bagels had previously hoped to put a smoked fish shop. (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

By Sabina Mollot

Though the summer is typically a slow period for business, a dollar (and up) store has opened on First Avenue, in the location that was last occupied by kiddie hair salon Beehives & Buzzcuts. Last week, the store, J’s 99 Cents and Up, featuring houseware items and other tsotchkes, opened.

Stanley Huang, whose family owns the store, said this is the fourth store of this type the family’s opened in Manhattan. At least half of the merchandise will actually cost a dollar a piece, he added, with the store mainly offering kids’ toys and balloons, houseware like kitchen items and hardware. Huang said the shop has a 15-year lease.

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