Meet Your Local Farmers: Acevedo Farm at ST Greenmarket

Alexis Acevedo mans the booth for the Goshen-based farm. (Photo by Maya Rader)

Alexis Acevedo mans the booth for the Goshen-based farm. (Photo by Maya Rader)

By Maya Rader

Acevedo Farm is the definition of a family farm. The entire operation is run by 16-year-old Alexis Acevedo, his brother, his sister, and their parents in Goshen, NY. Although the ten-acre produce farm is not organic, it doesn’t use pesticides (except on their corn). They opted not to become certified organic, like many other farmers at the Stuyvesant Town Greenmarket, because of the complex and bureaucratic process to get certification. “It takes up to ten years,” said Acevedo. Acevedo Farm sells many types of produce including peppers, tomatoes, zucchini, and chard.

Before Acevedo was a farmer in Goshen, he lived in the nearby city of Middletown. When he was ten years old, he moved to Goshen, where his family started the farm.

Acevedo said one of his favorite parts of working on the farm is driving a tractor, which he has done since he was eleven.

“That’s the most fun thing to do on the farm,” said Acevedo.

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PSLL wins 3 championship titles

The 12-year-old majors division team members celebrate their championship. (Photo by Jeff Ourvan)

The 12-year-old majors division team members celebrate their championship. (Photos by Jeff Ourvan)

In an unprecedented streak of Little League World Series tournament victories, the local Peter Stuyvesant Little League (PSLL) recently brought home three Manhattan and New York City championship banners. The wins included, for the first time in PSLL’s history, a New York City championship, simultaneous Manhattan championships for the 11 and 12-year-old and 9 and 10-year-old baseball squads, and the second consecutive year in which the PSLL 9 and 10-year-old tournament team secured the Manhattan championship.

“Thanks to some very talented and dedicated players, these players’ parents, and improved coaching opportunities in PSLL, we’ve started to produce winning teams over the past three to four years,” said Jeff Ourvan, the PSLL president.

Ourvan added that winter clinics the players got to participate in the Courts at Stuy Town were “a particularly huge boost,” as was Con Edison’s support of the league’s field requests through the spring and summer.

“It really takes a large community effort to support so many kids in this way,” Ourvan said, “and we’re so grateful we can respond to that support with what’s now becoming a winning tradition.”

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Republican Club president running against Kavanagh

Stuyvesant Town resident Frank Scala, also the president of the Albano Republican Club, at  the barber shop he owns, La Scala Photo by Sabina Mollot)

Stuyvesant Town resident Frank Scala, also the president of the Albano Republican Club, at the barber shop he owns, La Scala (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

By Sabina Mollot

For Stuyvesant Town resident Frank Scala, this is not his first time running for office in a race as a longshot candidate. In fact, it was just two years ago when Scala, who’s also the president of the Albano Republican Club, entered a race without even trying to win. He was completely inactive, merely giving Republican voters a chance to enter the name of someone from their own party.

This time, he’s running as a candidate for the New York State Assembly, 74th District, against Brian Kavanagh. In the last state election cycle in 2014, Scala ran against State Senator Brad Hoylman.

“Most of the time, people don’t vote for the person, they vote for the party,” said Scala, a native of Sicily, who, after over half a century living in the United States, still has the accent of his homeland intact.

For the past 40 years he’s been a barber at La Scala, a shop he owns, in an office building on Fifth Avenue. Ryant Serhant, a realtor featured on Bravo’s “Million Dollar Listing New York,” is a weekly client as are a number of others in show business, Scala said, along with more corporate types.

Overwhelming positive Yelp reviews commend his haircutting style and his providing of a “man’s man” environment, complete with racecar art on the walls and a stash of Playboys to peruse through.

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Leaked emails haven’t killed Clinton buzz at convention, Maloney says

Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney, pictured in Stuyvesant Town in June Photo by Sabina Mollot)

Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney, pictured in Stuyvesant Town in June (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

By Sabina Mollot

On the chaos that erupted over the weekend prior to the Democratic National Convention over hacked emails that showed Hillary Clinton had been the party’s favored candidate, infuriating supporters of Bernie Sanders, a local delegate attempted to dismiss all that on Tuesday to T&V as “yesterday’s news.”

That delegate was Congress Member Carolyn Maloney, a staunch Clinton supporter who’s served as a surrogate during the campaign, and who, on Tuesday, had hoped the media would pay more attention to a food fight she’d organized at the DNC. It pinned Philly cheese steaks vs. New York cheese cakes as well as a few other delicacies claimed by each city as its own.

However, naturally, voters have been more focused on the ouster of the DNC’s chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz as a result of the hacked emails that were made public and the potential results of yet another e-mail-gate on Clinton’s attempt to become president.

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Letters to the editor, July 28

Cartoon by Jim Meadows

Cartoon by Jim Meadows

Stuy Town is filled with squirrel haters

Dear Sabina Mollot,

This is in response to your malicious article of July 14 about the little squirrels in Stuyvesant Town. You wrote the article based on “hear-say” without any fundamental proof by some malicious people who show the perpetual hatred for dogs, cats, squirrels, sparrows in Stuy-Town and Peter Cooper.

This must be the same people who many years ago started the diabolical rumor “that some Spanish speaking tenants were breaking into apartments.”

With so much going on in this country as the killing of innocent police officers, corruption at local, state and federal levels, terrorist attacks and killings of American citizens in US soil, you have the time to propagate lies against innocent animals.

I personally have suffered hateful remarks while feeding squirrels by some old timers such as: “You don’t belong here. Move.” And for those people, I want to let them know that I’m going to continue living in Stuyvesant Town as long as I wish because a) the law allows me, and b) I can afford to pay the full rent without any subsidy.

During my professional life, I worked for an international organization and traveled to many countries and never felt the amount of hatefulness in one place inflicted to decent people by some few.

And finally, you should be encouraging people to stop complaining about any little thing in the community. This is a big community and you are going to hear noise. Let the children be children, children are going to play, children are going to make noise, children are going to laugh, dogs are going to bark and young adults are going to play basketball.

Stop whining about the maintenance workers in the entire complex, they are doing an excellent job in keeping all of us in a very desirable environment.


Al Salame, ST

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Woman attacked, another robbed in separate incidents near Stuy Town

July28 Robbery suspectBy Sabina Mollot

Cops are hunting two thugs who preyed on women in separate incidents, one an assault, the other a robbery, in the East Village near Stuyvesant Town.

In the most recent incident, on Wednesday, July 27, at half past midnight, at East 13th Street and Avenue B, a man followed a 33-year-old woman into her apartment building. He then told her he had a gun and demanded her property. The victim complied and gave the mugger her cell phone, debit card, jewelry and $35 in cash. The man then ordered her to lie face down and he tied the victim’s hands behind her back before fleeing the building in an unknown direction.

The suspect is described as Hispanic, 30 to 40 years old, 5’10”, 200 to 225 lbs.; and was last seen wearing a yellow shirt, black jeans, a black baseball cap and he had on a black backpack.

July28 Assault suspectThe first incident, which took place on Saturday, July 23 at around 1:45 a.m. in front of 208 First Avenue between East 12th and 13th Streets, started when a man grabbed a 37-year-old woman’s butt.

When she confronted him, he punched her in the face numerous times. Then he ran north on First Avenue.The suspect is described as white, 20 to 25 years old, 5’8″, 140 lbs.; and was wearing a dark colored shirt and blue jeans.

Anyone with information in regards to these incidents is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). The public can also submit tips online or by texting their tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then enter TIP577. All calls are strictly confidential.

Police Watch: Man arrested for snatching phone, Groceries stolen from Kips Bay senior

Police arrested 33-year-old Eulofio Cardona after he allegedly threw a woman to the ground and snatched her phone. The victim told police that she was standing on East 21st Street last Wednesday at 9 a.m. when Cardona ripped her phone out of her hand and then fled east on his bike.
The victim said she suffered cuts on her hands and knees as a result of being knocked to the ground.
Police arrested Cardona in front of 201 East 21st Street, charging him with robbery, grand larceny and possession of stolen property.

Police arrested 54-year-old Leslie Vereen for petit larceny inside 14 East 28th Street last Friday at 1:30 a.m. Vereen allegedly entered the victim’s apartment and left with several bags of groceries without permission. Police said that the victim is a 74-year-old man who suffers from dementia. Vereen could allegedly be seen on a security camera leaving the victim’s apartment with the groceries.

Police arrested 30-year-old Mamoun Khalil-Mohsen for assault last Monday at 5:51 a.m. at the corner of Second Avenue and East 27th Street. Police said that Khalil-Mohsen hit the victim with a belt, causing a cut and a welt on his upper back.

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Stuy Town man arrested for dealing meth from apartment

Stuyvesant Town (photo by Sabina Mollot)

Stuyvesant Town (photo by Sabina Mollot)

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

Police arrested an alleged meth dealer living in Stuyvesant Town last week after using the social networking app Grindr to track him down. Harold Gondrez, 65, was arrested in his apartment at 9 Stuyvesant Oval last Thursday at 6:15 a.m. Police had gotten a warrant to a search his apartment  after an undercover officer allegedly bought meth from him multiple times.

The officer who was investigating the case with Narcotics Borough Manhattan South made initial contact with Gondrez through the smartphone app, which is geared towards gay and bisexual men.

Police routinely conduct investigations in which they visit internet sites where drugs are known to be advertised for sale, according to law enforcement sources, and methamphetamine use is prevalent in the gay community. Drugs are typically advertised in coded language that police have come to recognize.

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Opinion: The apologetic Justice Ginsburg

By former Assemblyman Steven Sanders

A week ago Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg waded into Presidential politics. She should not have. Sure she had a constitutional right to do so. After all, the First Amendment does not restrict judges from speaking their minds on matters of importance that are not subject to litigation before them.

However, her comments about the Republican Presidential candidate were ill advised and she was right to issue an apology. Whether her assessment of Donald Trump as a “faker” and impulsive was correct, or condemning his refusal to release his tax returns as all candidates for President have done now for 40 years was justified or not, as a jurist on the nation’s highest court she should have kept her opinions to herself.

Donald Trump’s response to her criticism was predictable. He said that “her mind is shot” and as such should resign from the court!

What I find fascinating about this latest tempest is that Ginsburg ultimately understood that her spontaneous remarks were inappropriate for a person in her position. She reflected on that and said that she regretted having made such comments. Contrast that with Mr. Trump. Do you recall him apologizing for anything that he has said along the campaign trail? Has he ever demonstrated any remorse for the nasty and intemperate things that he has said about opponents or just people he does not like? Is he capable of admitting to any mistakes or being introspective or reflective? Do we care if a President is devoid of these qualities? These are all important questions.

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Police looking for East 14th Street apartment burglar

Burglary suspect

Burglary suspect

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

A burglar stole a home security system from an apartment on East 14th Street and Avenue A last Friday, but not before the system snapped a surveillance photo of him committing the crime, police said.

Cops are still searching for the suspect, who got into the apartment by picking the lock last Friday around 1:37 p.m.

In addition to the Canary security system, police said that the suspect got away with a white iPad 4, and other electronics, valued at $964. The 29-year-old resident of the apartment was not home at the time of the burglary.

The suspect is an unidentified Hispanic man who was wearing a blue baseball cap, a striped polo shirt, grey cargo shorts and black sneakers.

Anyone with information in regards to this incident is asked to call the NYPD’s Crime Stoppers Hotline at 1-800-577-TIPS (8477) or for Spanish, 1-888-57-PISTA (74782). The public can also submit their tips by logging onto the Crime Stoppers website or by texting their tips to 274637 (CRIMES) then enter TIP577. All calls are strictly confidential.

Opinion: On the matter of black lives

By Rev. Dr. Jacqui Lewis
Senior Minister, Middle Collegiate Church

A man’s body is slammed against a car, he is wrestled to the ground, face smashed into pavement. My head hurts, watching, feeling the rub of the asphalt. I have been here before. The familiar sense of suffocation. Hard to breathe with your face in the concrete. Subdued, they are sitting on him, on me. He is tased. I am tased. I am shot. In the chest. I can’t breathe. I’m shot in the back, it is on fire. I am lying there, I use my hand to reach up to touch the bleeding space. I am dying. I am dead.

He is dead. We are dead. Reciting from our graves the names of the all-too-many killed at the hands of the state or by those who know the state will exonerate them.

A little girl sits in the back seat, her mother is praying over and over again, “Please Jesus, don’t let them have killed my boyfriend.” He is bleeding, slumped over, a pulpy mess where his arm should be. She watches, she listens, and we see what she sees, hear what she hears. There is a policeman holding a gun in the window, pointing at him, who is moaning. Mommy is talking into the phone, making a video. She has to get Mommy’s purse. Now we are in the police car. Mommy is crying, she is losing it. I am afraid, but I think she is more. I tell Mommy, “I am right here with you.”

The man is dead, they killed her childhood.

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L train will close for 18 months in Manhattan in 2019, MTA says

Straphangers waiting for the L at First Ave. (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

Straphangers waiting for the L at First Ave.

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

The MTA announced this morning that the L train will be completely shut down between Brooklyn and Manhattan for 18 months beginning in January, 2019.

According to social media, email surveys and testimony from public meetings, 77 percent of respondents were in favor of the 18-month full shutdown, the MTA said.

The 11 community boards in the affected areas along the L, which hosted meetings about the two options prior to the decision, were also more in favor of a full closure than of a partial shutdown. In the joint meeting hosted by Community Boards 3 and 6 at the end of last month, Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney expressed her strong support of the full closure, basing her decision on a number of meetings with the community that she had attended previously.

“During this process, it quickly became clear to many in affected communities that a shorter, full closure will be less painful than a longer period with minimal service, as long as there are broad and varied alternative ways to get to work while the line is closed,” Maloney said following the announcement. “I’ve argued that most people will accept full closure, as long as it takes them no more than 20 extra minutes to reach their destinations, and I look forward to working with the MTA to make sure this happens.”

The New York Times first reported the news on Monday morning, noting that officials hope to finish the repairs, made necessary because of damage from Hurricane Sandy, as quickly as possible to limit the impact on riders.

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Another Council candidate enters race, raising $170G

Marti Speranza, City Council candidate and co-president of the Gramercy Stuyvesant Independent Democrats Club, pictured at Madison Square Park Photo by Sabina Mollot)

Marti Speranza, City Council candidate and co-president of the Gramercy Stuyvesant Independent Democrats Club, pictured at Madison Square Park (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

By Sabina Mollot

The most recent person to enter the City Council race for the seat currently occupied by Dan Garodnick is Marti Speranza, a former city employee and the co-president of the Gramercy Stuyvesant Independent Democrats Club.

Speranza, a 40-year-old NoMad neighborhood resident, is so far the only woman Democrat in the race. Another female candidate, Peter Cooper Village’s Diane Grayson, is running as an Independent.

Other candidates are Democrats Keith Powers and Jeff Mailman. As T&V first reported, former candidate Joshua Thompson dropped out of the Council race in May and is now running for mayor.

For Speranza, fundraising for the Council campaign has been in the works since April and just last week, she stepped down from her job as director at Women Entrepreneurs (WE) NYC, a new city initiative, to focus on the race.

So far things seem to be going well for Speranza, who announced that she raised $169,706 by the filing date last week, a fundraising record for the first filing of a Council race. She now has over $170,000. The record was previously held by Council Member Corey Johnson, who’d raised $166,000. Speranza also said this was the first time a woman candidate got $100,000 in contributions in the first filing. Of that campaign cash, 52 percent of those donating it are women and 72 percent gave $250 or less, she said. None were real estate developers or lobbyists.

On being the only female Democrat in the race, Speranza pointed out that at this time, because of term limits faced by members of the City Council, the number of female representatives out of over 50 could potentially drop to just nine.

“I do feel that more women need to step up to the plate and run for these seats,” she said.

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Greenmarket Spotlight Migliorelli Farm at Stuy Town

Tenzin Khechok at the Migiorelli Farms stand (Photo by Maya Rader)

Tenzin Khechok at the Migiorelli Farms stand (Photo by Maya Rader)

By Maya Rader

Tenzin Khechok has never been to the farm he works for. However, that doesn’t limit his passion for the vegetables and fruits he sells at markets all over the city for Migliorelli Farm. “I enjoy it every day,” Khechok said.

Migliorelli Farm is located in Dutchess County in Upstate New York. The farm sells a wide range of produce, from apples to corn, at many markets across the city, including Stuyvesant Town’s own greenmarket. The farm is not certified organic, though it does limit the use of pesticides and is GMO-free.

Khechok started working for Migliorelli Farm two years ago as a salesman and cashier at farmer’s markets. He said he “learns almost every day” by selling food at the markets. He explained that customers tell him what they know about different foods he sells, and then he imparts that knowledge to other customers. “You learn from each other,” commented Khechok.

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