Halloween celebrated in Stuyvesant Town

Space Cadets w kids

The Space Cadets (Photos by Sabina Mollot)

By Sabina Mollot

On Tuesday afternoon, Stuyvesant Town held its annual Halloween festival for children, after the event was delayed due to a storm on Saturday.

Fortunately, the weather was dry and mild on Tuesday.

“I’m glad we invested all our money in bribing Mother Nature,” joked Robert Vazquez, Stuy Town’s director of lifestyle services. “She cost a lot but it was worth it.”

This year’s event was packed as usual with costumed revelers enjoying bounce houses, an arts & crafts table, a pumpkin patch fashioned out of balloons and a corn maze. Kids also got to dance to the music of the band Space Cadets and take pictures at a display of skeletons.

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Haunted subway in Union Square

Photos by Maria Rocha-Buschel

By Maria Rocha-Buschel

As if the subway weren’t scary enough on a daily basis, the NYPD created a family-friendly haunted house inside the Union Square subway station earlier this month. The enclosed structure was set up in the station’s underground hallway near the 15th Street exit.

Officers for Transit District 4, which is located within the Union Square station, dressed in costume to hand out cotton candy and other treats to kids. Despite the real-life nightmare of commuting, the haunted house proved popular, with crowds lined through the station on Thursday afternoon in the midst of the evening commute, waiting to get inside.

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Stuy Town Halloween events for residents

Halloween display in Stuyvesant Town (Photo by Maria Rocha-Buschel)

StuyTown property Services presents the following free Halloween events for residents. Guests are asked to bring their resident IDs.

Family Halloween Fun-Fest

On Tuesday, October 30 from 3:30 to 6 p.m. on the Oval, families are invited to come in costume to the annual fair, which this year will feature five bounce houses for various ages, carnival snacks, a craft area with rubbed art, buttons, crowns, puppets, murals, a balloon-filled pumpkin patch with mini pumpkins for decorating, live music and guest entertainers with magic and mayhem.

Editor’s note: This event has been rescheduled from October 27 due to a predicted nor’easter.

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Crowds come out for Halloween in Stuy Town

On Saturday afternoon, families from Stuyvesant Town and Peter Cooper Village packed the Oval for the complex’s annual kids’ event for Halloween.

At any given time around hundreds of costume-clad celebrants milled around, picking pumpkins to decorate, dancing to music by the Alex Alexander Band or getting their faces painted. There were also carnival games, two bouncy houses and a haunted house. Management estimated the total figure of guests coming through at over 3,000, even with wristband-only access for residents and their guests.

Photos by Sabina Mollot

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Bills take aim at predatory equity

Tenants hold signs at a rally at City Hall, followed by a City Council hearing on legislation aimed at curbing the practice of predatory equity. (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

Tenants hold signs at a rally at City Hall, followed by a City Council hearing on legislation aimed at curbing the practice of predatory equity. (Photos by Sabina Mollot)

By Sabina Mollot

On Halloween, dozens of tenants holding spooky signs rallied at City Hall to bash landlords as vampires if they engage in predatory equity. The event was held prior to a City Council hearing on a package of bills that were aimed at stopping the blood-sucking practice.

Predatory equity is generally defined as when a landlord purchases a property with a high level of debt that could only be expected to be paid if the owner aggressively tries to get rid of rent-regulated tenants and replace them with higher paying ones. Tactics that could be considered aggressive by landlords include harassment via frivolous lawsuits, a lack of basic maintenance, illegal fees, constant buyout offers or construction that’s unsafe or seems gratuitously disruptive.

One of the City Council members pushing legislation, Dan Garodnick, gave the example of Stuyvesant Town’s sale to Tishman Speyer a decade ago as a prime example of predatory equity.

“This is when landlords overpay for buildings with the speculation that they will be able to deregulate units and drive out tenants,” he said. “You’re not making them enough money so they will try anything to get you out of there. This is harassment.”

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Families celebrate Halloween in Stuy Town

Five-year-old Julianne, 5-year-old Nathan and 6-year-old Aiden as Ghostbusters (Photos by Maya Rader)

By Maya Rader

On Saturday, October 29, hundreds of residents of Stuyvesant Town celebrated Halloween at the annual party for kids on the Oval. Activities included a haunted house, two bounce houses, face-painting, a bean toss and an obstacle course. Kids could also pick out their own pumpkin to decorate from a pumpkin patch on the lawn, or participate in other arts and crafts. Live entertainment included a band and a musician. Near the end of the event, a costume contest was held.

Doreen Straka, a parent who has been going to the event for five years, said, “It gets bigger and bigger every year.” Straka said her favorite activity is the pumpkin patch, and her daughter’s is the bouncy house.

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Halloween events that are local, kid-friendly

Oct15 Dog Parade 2014

A canine in costume at the Tompkins Square dog parade in 2014

By Sabina Mollot

Fans of Halloween rejoice: The holiday can be celebrated locally at events for families that are happening on October 31 as well as earlier.

Read on for a roundup of parties, parades and more:

Tompkins Square Dog Parade
If you want Fido to be part of the festivities, the 26th annual Tompkins Square Halloween Dog Parade is scheduled for Saturday, October 22 from noon-3 p.m. Costumes will be judged by TV personality Giuliana Rancic. Along with a chance to enter your dog into the competition for prizes, there will also be some goodies from event sponsors PetSmart and Beggin’ and pet adoption opportunities from local Petfinder rescue groups.
All funds raised at the event will support the Friends of First Run, the organization responsible for maintenance and upkeep of the Tompkins Square Park Dog Run. This year’s event is at a new location, the park’s multipurpose courts at Avenue A and East 10th Street.

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Police Watch: Man arrested for ‘gun’ and ‘cocaine,’ Taxi driver robbed at knifepoint

Loaded . 22 caliber Derringer allegedly found in Mark Nickay’s pocket

Loaded . 22 caliber Derringer allegedly found in Mark Nickay’s pocket

Police arrested 51-year-old Florida resident Mark Nickay for allegedly carrying a gun while also carrying a huge stash of drugs that included cocaine, crack cocaine and pills in his minivan.
Police were patrolling in the vicinity of Second Avenue and East 38th Street on Saturday at 12:53 a.m. when they saw Nickay standing in the street near a minivan with 32-year-old Leonard Ndue. Nickay, they said, was holding an open bottle of Corona. The officers exited their patrol vehicle and began to approach the men when they said that they saw Nickay throw a bag underneath the rear of the vehicle as he began to walk towards Second Avenue.
One of the officers stopped Nickay while another confronted Ndue. Police said that when the officer started to speak to Nickay, he saw Nickay trying to reach his hand into his pants pocket.
The officer prevented him from reaching into his pocket and discovered an alleged .22 caliber Derringer that was loaded from the suspect’s pocket. The officer who arrested Nickay retrieved the bag that had been thrown under the van and found 21 small bags of alleged cocaine, 10 bags of alleged crack cocaine and dozens of alleged pharmaceutical pills.
While Nickay was being arrested, Ndue allegedly attempted to intervene and was also arrested, and was charged with obstruction of governmental administration and resisting arrest. Nickay was arrested for criminal possession of a loaded firearm, criminal possession of a controlled substance and open alcoholic beverage.

Police arrested 23-year-old Daniel Leli for robbery in front of Bellevue Hospital at 462 First Avenue last Monday at 11:02 a.m.
A taxi driver told police that he was robbed at knifepoint by a customer in his cab. When stopped at a red light at East 28th Street and First Avenue, Leli hailed the cab and asked to go to East 23rd Street and Third Avenue. The victim said that while stopped at a red light at East 29th Street and Second Avenue, Leli allegedly reached through the partition, held a knife to the driver’s neck and said, “Give me money or I’ll stab you in the neck.”
The victim pulled cash out of his pocket and Leli allegedly said, “Give me $40.” The driver handed over $40 and police said that Leli then fled on foot, north on Second Avenue.
While looking through footage around Bellevue Hospital, police saw Leli, who matched the victim’s description of the suspect, standing in front of the hospital. The victim positively identified Leli as the man who had robbed him and he was arrested. Leli was also charged with weapons possession and menacing.

One week after a couple was arrested for allegedly getting frisky on the sidewalk on Irving Place, police arrested another couple for public lewdness inside a stairwell at 344 East 28th Street last Wednesday at 9:46 p.m. Latisha Foster, 41, and Mamadu Diallo, 29, were also charged with criminal trespass and an unclassified violation. Police said that Foster had her pants at her ankles and was bent over, exposing her genitals to Diallo, who also allegedly had his pants around his ankles and was masturbating. Upon further investigation, police found that neither Foster nor Diallo lived in the building.
Diallo was also charged with resisting arrest and police said that he pulled his arms away from his body in an attempt to avoid being handcuffed and once he was handcuffed, he fell to the floor and allegedly began kicking in a violent manner.

Police arrested 26-year-old Brian Forkos for assault of a peace officer and harassment inside Bellevue Hospital at 462 First Avenue last Friday at 3:30 a.m. Forkos allegedly spat in the face of the officer who was assigned to guard him. Police said that the victim was exposed to an unspecified communicable disease and Forkos allegedly told the officer that he is HIV positive.

Police arrested 35-year-old Lennox Pierre for assault of a peace officer last Friday at 6 a.m. in front of 255 First Avenue. Pierre was attempting to pay his bill at IHOP inside 235 East 14th Street around 5:15 a.m. when his debit and credit cards were declined. Police were called and officers who responded to the scene agreed to escort him to an ATM so he could get cash. When Pierre’s card failed to work at the ATM, police said that he got combative and when they tried to place him under arrest, he allegedly punched one of the officers in the face. Police said that he also resisted arrest by flailing his arms and legs, prohibiting them from putting him in handcuffs. Pierre also allegedly reached for an officer’s firearm, attempting to remove it from its holster.

Police arrested 56-year-old Zackary Engel for a violation of alcoholic beverage control law and an unclassified violation at his dance studio, Zack’s Dance Loft, at 37 East 28th Street last Saturday at 2:09 a.m. Engel was allegedly acting as the manager of a party inside the studio location and was charging a fee for entrance. Engel called police when he lost control over a large group that was entering the establishment. Police said that Engel was allowing drinking and smoking inside the building, and had also allegedly failed to provide proper security, allowing weapons inside the premises.

Police arrested 45-year-old Eric Diaz for assault and criminal mischief at the corner of Third Avenue and East 29th Street on Halloween at 7:52 p.m. Diaz entered a nearby store and after being refused service, he allegedly knocked over a stand of peanuts. When an employee attempted to get Diaz to leave the store, the suspect allegedly hit the employee with a costume gun holster, causing a bruise to his left thumb. Police said that Diaz also intentionally broke five bottles of ginseng worth approximately $15 and four bottles of five hour energy worth about $14.

Police arrested 22-year-old Leslie Dempsey for possession of a controlled substance in front of 16 East 23rd Street last Sunday at 1:10 a.m. Dempsey was snorting alleged cocaine on a public street and when she was stopped, police said that she was in possession of additional alleged cocaine.

Police arrested 27-year-old Joshua Williams for assault and disorderly conduct at the corner of Sixth Avenue and West 19th Street last Saturday at 9:58 p.m. Williams was allegedly acting in a disorderly manner and was told to move because he was blocking pedestrian traffic. He then allegedly pushed the victim in the chest with two hands into a metal barrier. The victim fell through the barrier, causing a serious injury.

Police arrested 21-year-old Sharron Kermon for unauthorized use of vehicle in front of 245 East 25th Street last Thursday at 12:35 p.m. Police were responding at the location to a report of a stolen vehicle and found that a car parked nearby had been reported as stolen by Enterprise Car Rental Company. Police requested that the vehicle be towed and while waiting for the tow company, police said that Kermon was seen entering the vehicle without permission. Upon further investigation, the Enterprise Rental agreement showed that he was allegedly using the vehicle unlawfully and was not on the rental agreement.

Cauz for Pawz holds costume parade for pooches

On Sunday, Cauz for Pawz held a Halloween parade and costume contest for dogs at the thrift store’s new location on First Avenue opposite Stuyvesant Town.

Contestants’ owners showed plenty of creativity with their furry friends’ costumes, like with Jax, the pooch that won first place, dressed up as the “Breaking Bad” RV. Jax’s owners, Morgan and Jack, won brunch at Bluebell café on Third Avenue. The second place winner was Milan, who was dressed up as a U.S. Marine. Third place winner was Kurtis, who was wearing lederhosen. Other costumes included French maid and Mardi Gras participant.

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Halloween events for kids, adults and pets

Dog at last year’s parade at Tompkins Square Park

Dog at last year’s parade at Tompkins Square Park

The following local Halloween events start this weekend:

GREENWICH VILLAGE CHILDREN’S PARADE—NYU and Community Board 2 present the 25th annual Children’s Halloween Parade, the city’s largest free children’s event on Halloween Day, October 31. Parents and children aged 3-12 are invited to gather at the Washington Square Arch by 1 p.m. Children and families will march around Washington Square Park. After the parade, free trick-or-treat bags, games and rides await the children on LaGuardia Place. The event finishes at 4 p.m. The parade assembles along Washington Square North, near the Arch and ends at LaGuardia between Washington Square South and West 3rd Street.

FAIR FOR KIDS IN STUY TOWN—Stuyvesant Town will hold a “Halloween Spooktacular” event on the Oval on Saturday, October 24 at 2 p.m. There will be a haunted house, a pumpkin patch, live music, face painting, crafts, candy and more for residents and their guests.

CARNIVAL AT LITTLE MISSIONARY—Little Missionary’s Day Nursery pre-school will hold a haunted Halloween party on October 31 from noon-4 p.m. at St. Marks Church and the Bowery, at East 10th Street and Second Avenue. There will be a haunted house, puppet show, music, games, cotton candy, hot dogs, face painting, scavenger hunts, creepy stories with Thea Taube and food and drinks. No entry fee, but tickets need to be purchased for food and activities. The music, puppet show and story time will be free.

PARADE FOR PETS NEAR STUY TOWN—Cauz for Pawz thrift shop will be holding its first Halloween parade for pets on Sunday, October 25 from 1-3 p.m. The pets will walk a red carpet and be voted on. The venue is the store’s new location at 333 First Avenue between 19th and 20th Streets. For more information, call (212) 684-7299.

DOG PARADE AT TOMPKINS SQUARE PARK—On Saturday, October 24 from noon-3 p.m., the annual Halloween parade for dogs will take place at Tompkins Square Park. There will be tons of prizes for dogs in costumes at this event, which will be held in the dog run, East 9th Street between Avenues A and B. There will also be local rescue adoptions. Rain date is Sunday.

PARTY FOR KIDS AT WATERSIDE—All resident Waterside children are invited to attend the annual Halloween party on Sat., Oct. 31 from 5-7 p.m. at the Waterside Swim & Health Club, 35 Waterside Plaza and outside on the plaza, weather permitting. The event will feature face painting, a photo booth, a costume contest, a spooktacular number of games and activities and lots and lots of treats. Admission is free and open to resident children of Waterside Plaza. Children must be accompanied by an adult.

COSTUME BALL & PERFORMANCES FOR ADULTS—Theater for the New City, 155 First Ave. at E. 10th St., presents its 38th annual Village Halloween Costume Ball on Saturday, October 31. This unique festival continues as a grand coming-together for everyday New Yorkers and artists alike. A carefree fall tradition, it celebrates the creativity that comes with the season. The one-night fiesta takes over all four of TNC’s theater spaces, plus its lobby and the block of East Tenth Street between First and Second Avenues. Admission is $20; costume or formal wear is required. Once inside, everything is free except food and drink, which are graveyard dirt-cheap. Big-Band Dance orchestras take over the large Johnson Theater. These will include Hot Lavender Swing Band, an all-Gay and Lesbian 18-piece orchestra, and Maquina Mono (The Monkey Machine), a Latin Salsa Rock band. The Johnson Theater will also have aerial dance by Suspended Cirque. Outside, there are R&B and Dixieland bands, fire eaters, jugglers, storyweavers and stilt dancers, all free to the public. Inside, there is theater all evening. Doors open at 7:30 p.m. and indoor entertainment begins at 8 p.m. There will be two continuously-running cabarets. Outdoor entertainment will start at  3:30 p.m. Outdoor entertainment is capped by “The Red and Black Masque,” an annual Medieval ritual show written by Arthur Sainer, scored by David Tice and directed by Crystal Field which is performed by torchlight. Scattered through the event will be stilt dancers, jugglers, fire-eaters, Vaudeville playlets, Burlesque and Hellsouls. The annual costume judging begins at midnight with the “Monsters and Miracles Costume Parade,” as all revelers are invited to march past a panel of celebrity judges. Winners will receive one-year passes to TNC and a bottle of Moet and Chandon champagne. Reservations are strongly recommended. For tickets ($20, costume or formal wear required) or more information, call (212) 254-1109 or visit http://www.theaterforthenewcity.net.

Halloween event for kids in Stuyvesant Town

Nate and Robbi Marmur with their children Ellery and Gorel, dressed up as Peanuts characters. (Photo by Sabina Mollot)

Nate and Robbi Marmur with their children Ellery and Gorel, dressed up as Peanuts characters.

On Saturday afternoon, hundreds headed to the Oval for Stuyvesant Town’s annual Halloween fair for kids. Thanks to sunny skies and weather warm enough for kids to wear their costumes sans jackets, the crowd was even bigger than usual. This year, the free event also included live music, a pumpkin patch, crafts, bounce houses and a pop-up haunted house. There was plenty of creativity from families for costumes, including Peanuts characters (complete with Lucy’s psychiatric help stand), a homemade sanitation truck, a Day of the Dead character and some attendees also dressed up their dogs for a pooch costume contest.

The next big event scheduled to take place in Stuy Town will be the opening of the ice rink on Halloween. Kids who come in costume will get in free.

(Click through for more photos from the event. All photos by Sabina Mollot.)

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Local Halloween events for adults

(Pictured L-R) Elizabeth Barkan, Elena Shadrina and Charles Battersby as Eco-Witches in a skit for Theater for the New City’s Village Halloween Ball (Photo by Jonathan Slaff)

(Pictured L-R) Elizabeth Barkan, Elena Shadrina and Charles Battersby as Eco-Witches in a skit for Theater for the New City’s Village Halloween Ball (Photo by Jonathan Slaff)

Halloween is coming up, and while one could always head to a nightclub or the parade that evening there are other things for adults to do. Read on for details of a few local events.

Ghosts of Greenwich Village Tour—In the days leading up to Halloween (every evening at 7:30 p.m. until the 31st of October) Ghosts of New York presents “Edgar Allan Poe and His Ghostly Neighbors of Greenwich Village.” Participants will go in search of the spirits of Eleanor Roosevelt and her pet dog Fala, Aaron Burr, the ghosts of the New York University Library and of Washington Square Arch, and, of course, several Edgar Allan Poe sites.

Meeting place is 85 West Third Street, one block south of Washington Square Park between Thompson and Sullivan Streets, Greenwich Village in Manhattan opposite Fire Patrol Station no. 2. Tours are $20 for adults, $15 students and seniors. For more information or to book the tour, visit http://www.ghostsofny.com.

Ghosts of the East Village Tour—Ghosts of New York presents “Peter Stuyvesant and His Ghostly Friends of the East Village” tour on October 31 at 7:30 and 9:30 p.m. Participants will go in search of Peter Stuyvesant’s ghostly friends such as Edgar Allan Poe, August Belmont, Joe Papp, Washington Irving, Tredwell sisters of the Merchant House Museum, Samuel Clemens, Harry Houdini, and many others in the East Village.

This tour departs from the lion sculpture in Abe Lebewohl Park in front of St. Mark’s Church in-the-Bowery, northwest corner of Second Avenue and 135 East Tenth Street. Tours are wheel-chair accessible, 90 minutes in duration, and approximately a mile in length. The cost is $20 for adults, $15 students and seniors. For more information, visit http://www.ghostsofny.com or call (646) 493-7092.

Theater for the New City Costume Ball and performances—Theater for the New City presents its 38th annual Village Halloween Costume Ball on Friday, October 31 at TNC, 155 First Avenue at 10th Street. The event takes over all four of TNC’s theater spaces, plus its lobby and the block of East Tenth Street between First and Second Avenues.

Hot Lavendar Swing Band, an all-Gay and Lesbian 18-piece orchestra, and Maquina Mono (The Monkey Machine), a Latin Salsa Rock band, will perform at The Johnson Theater. The theater will also have aerial dance by Suspended Cirque. Holiday dishes are contributed by neighboring East Village restaurants. There will be performance artists, songwriters, poets and variety artists including Phoebe Legere, Penny Arcade, Evan Laurence, Arthur Abrams, Norman Savitt, Richard West, Ellen Steier, Dawoud Kringle (sitar) and Gary Heidt.

Outside, there are R&B and Dixieland bands, fire eaters, jugglers, storyweavers and stilt dancers, all free to the public and a gift from TNC to its neighborhood. Inside, there is theater all evening. The lobby will be divided into rooms featuring rooms for astrology/numerology readings. Phyllis Yampolsky will throw the I-Ching.

Doors open at 7:30 p.m. and indoor entertainment begins at 8 p.m. There will be two continuously-running cabarets. Outdoor entertainment, free to the public, will start at 4:30 p.m. Outdoor entertainment is capped by “The Red and Black Masque,” an annual Medieval ritual show written by Arthur Sainer, scored by David Tice and directed by Crystal Field which is performed by torchlight. Reservations are strongly recommended. The TNC box office number is (212) 254-1109. Admission is $20; costume or formal wear is required. Once inside, everything is free except food and drink. For tickets, call (212) 254-1109 or visit http://www.theaterforthenewcity.net.

Halloween in Stuy Town

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Hundreds headed out to the Oval on Sunday for Stuyvesant Town’s annual carnival for kids, which included games, pumpkin painting, a vaudeville act by performers from Parallel Exit and the opportunity for whole families to march in a costume parade. There was also plenty of candy for trick or treaters.
Though last year’s Halloween event was cut short due to warnings about the hurricane that came the next day, this time, the worst thing weather-wise was a bit of wind.
Popular choices for costumes were Star Wars characters and superheroes for boys, princesses and fairies for girls and animals for babies and toddlers. One tiny pumpkin was the son of comptroller hopeful and Manhattan Borough President Scott Stringer, who was there with his family.
For those going the DIY route with costumes, there was no short of creativity to be found with a few standout costumes including the L train, a slice of bacon and a robot.

Letters to the Editor, Jan. 10

Rent abatement waiver isn’t unfair

To the editor,

Public Advocate DeBlasio and the Tenants Association are seeking headlines by belittling CW Capital’s decision to grant a 15 percent rent reduction, in exchange for a promise not to be sued for losses related to the hurricane.

This is surprising, because tenants have nothing to lose by signing the waiver – and everything to gain.

The maximum damages any tenant could recover in a lawsuit would be the rent such tenant paid during the period in which their apartment did not have power.  Management could contest this argument, noting that most tenants had running water and flashlights.

Moreover, suing management would take three to five years, and legal fees could consume up to a third of any recovery.

With 11,000 tenants in ST/PCV, including hundreds of attorneys, there are bound to be a few lawyers who will try to trick tenants into believing they could recover more than they were due.  But let’s review the results of the Roberts litigation – which took five years and mainly enriched only the lawyers.

Moreover, if a class action were to be initiated against CW Capital, it would throw yet another wrench into the process leading to a non-eviction condo conversion of the property.  A large, outstanding litigation against the property could cause our partner Brookfield Management to have a change of heart, and could spook any financing partners Brookfield would bring to the table.

A more prudent and ethical course for our neighbors is to gracefully accept the rent abatement and to say “thank you.” It would be far more constructive to sign the waiver and acknowledge that CW in fact did heroic work in restoring power after the unprecedented violence of the storm.

Rather than advise a rent strike, the Tenants Association should recall that civility is never a sign of weakness.

Name withheld, ST

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