Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Pot Luck a Big Success!

Over 90 people ate, sang, schmoozed, and had a good time at our annual Pot Luck Party.

We listened to candidate Brian Benjamin (nominated by the Democratic Party to replace Bill Perkins who left the State Senate to become a City Council member) and to our own City Council Member Mark Levine.  Then we ate some more!

The primary credit goes to our Pot Luck Planners; Maxine Soares, Lydia Pitsirilos, Joan Browne, and Debbie Gonzalez. 

And THANKS to the many people who contributed their work and food and time:

Lydia Pitsirilos, Maxine Soares, Debbie Gonzalez, Letty Orellano, Claude Saucier, and Vernon Smith, did the set-up and decorations, with a lovely motif of hanging spirals of paper (shiny and not).  

Joan Browne,Helen Merber, and Maria Acevedo greeted guests all evening and wrote down the dish those who signed in brought.    The dishes were put out by Tish Howard with help from Melanie Eversley.

WHAT PEOPLE BROUGHT  (If you didn't sign in, your dish isn't here - so let me know!)

Maria Acevedo: Bruschetta
Stephanie and John Arenas: Cookies
Laurie Barton:  Vegetable and fruit platter, cake
Chariss Boisseau & Carlos: Mac& cheese, seltzer, and music!
deAndrade:  Empanadas
Dixon, Norma: Yellow rice with peas and eggs; yellow rice with mixed vegetables
Gabrielle Everett: Coleslaw with hot dogs
Melanie Eversley: Chicken pasta salad
Paul Fisher:  Cake
Sheila Friedling: Tossed salad
Debbie Gonzalez - Roasted vegetables
Linda Greenman: Rugelach
Aaron Heisler & Alexandra Martin: Cookies,rugelach
Jill  Hodge: Cookies
Tish Howard: Roasted chicken with garlic and peppers
Florence Jackson & Jerry Pirog: Korean chicken legs; black bean & corn salad
Pat Jordan: Haricots verts
Laura Koulish: Spinach lasagna
Mona and Jean Joseph Leon: Pasta with garden vegetables
Collean Mallon: Greek pasta salad
Ena Malone: Chocolate cherry tiara cake
Kathie Murray: Turkey chili
Adelaida Navarro: Arroz con gandules
Brenda Marshall: Red Velvet Cake
Marlene Melton: Summer punch (and one other punch recipe!)
Roie and Prudence Oppreman: Cakes
Letty Orellano: Garlic stringbeans
Mildred Palermo: Juice
Lydia Pitsirilos - Roast chicken, potato salad
Namita Prasad:  Samosas
Sekhar Ramakrishnan:  Spicy broccoli
Bones Rodriguez: Coconut, walnut, oatmeal raisin cookies
Virginia Santiago: Cookies and punch
Maxine Soares: Jerk chicken
Janie Stewart: Collard greens
Cary Webb: Home-made parker rolls, garlic knots
Beatriz Zapata: Fresh cheese with peppers appetizer

Steve Koulish, Laura Koulish, Lydia Pitsirilos, Claude Saucier, Vernon Smith, Maxine Soares

Special thanks to Chariss Boisseau for providing the music, to building staff Mike Medina, Lenny Moreno, and Modesto ("Ito") Santiago for their pre-party clean-up and to Barbara Geller for arranging the flowers outside.   Thanks to Vernon Smith who found, cleaned, and prepared the table and chairs outside and to Claude Saucier and Vernon Smith prepared the children's rug and chairs.  

Friday, May 19, 2017

Tonight's the night for our Pot Luck Party!

Annual Pot-Luck Party TONIGHT
Sat., May 20th, 2017 
6-9 PM
in the Community Room and Backyard

 Inline image 1

Bring a dish for 8-10 people or help out    . .  . 


Just come share in the fun & food for a small contribution: 
$10 per person or
$15 per household.
Non-tenant guests are $10 each.

- even a little kids table.


HAVE FUN - and take the opportunity to sign a card to 
our long-time handyman 
Jose Rosado
who will be retiring on May 27, 2017.
(Some tenants are having an informal party for him in the lobby that Saturday at 11 AM.  Stop by!)

Click on "read more" for the MENU so far.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Come to our Pot Luck on May 20th!

Annual Pot-Luck Party
Sat., May 20th, 2017 
6-9 PM
in the Community Room and Backyard

 Inline image 1

Bring a dish for 8-10 people or help out    . .  . 


Just come share in the fun & food for a small contribution: 
$10 per person or
$15 per household.
Non-tenant guests are $10 each.

- even a little kids table.

HAVE FUN - and take the opportunity to sign a card to 
our long-time handyman 
Jose Rosado
who will be retiring on May 26, 2017.

Saturday, April 1, 2017

Coming up . . .

April 6, 2017:  Forum with NYC Comptroller Scott Stringer at Goddard Riverside, 593 Columbus Ave. (at 88th St.)  6:30 PM

April  13, 2017: Town Hall with Congressman Jerrold Nadler, 6-8 PM at Goddard Riverside, 593 Columbus Ave. 

April 25, 2017:  Rent Guidelines Board's Preliminary Vote on any rent adjustments for leases renewed any time from Oct. 1, 2017 through Sept. 30, 2018.  7 PM at Cooper Union's Auditorium, 7 E. 7th Street (3rd Ave.)

Friday, March 31, 2017

Summary of General Tenants Meeting of March 21, 2017

Peace to RUTH ELLIN. We began with a tribute to Ruth, a founder and former president of our tenant association.  With great foresight, Ruth ensured that we were a part of NYC’s larger tenant movement and connected to local political clubs.  She also ensured that we had a solid financial base so when legal fights became necessary, we were prepared.  When Ruth became frail, Lenore Richter (on left in photo), arranged for and supervised Ruth’s 24-hour care.  Ruth died at 94, having been a TV, film, and stage actor, and active in the Yiddish Theater.  Ruth was an immigrant from Canada who loved both her countries. Our condolences to  Ruth’s sister Lola Mendelson, Lola’s son Simon, and their extended family.

COURT UPHELD RENT FREEZE. When the  landlords' "Rent Stabilization Association" tried to undo the Rent Guidelines Board’s rent freeze for those renewing their lease for 1 year, the State court ruled that the RGB had appropriately considered tenants’ ability to pay – and upheld the rent freeze. Yay!

RENT GUIDELINES BOARD'S Preliminary Vote: April 25.  Join the Rent Justice Coalition at the preliminary vote to demand a rent rollback:  Rents are still too high.  7 PM at Cooper Union's auditorium, 7 East 7th St., at 3rd Ave.


Leilani Straw, president of Bloomingdale Aging in Place, and Caitlin Hawke, BAiP’s
activities co-chair, explained that BAiP is a very local organization of volunteers.  The volunteers lead ongoing activity groups they are interested in, and others sign up.  There are groups ranging from book discussion and tennis to eating at a particular local restaurant once a month, to dog run meetups, Broadway-play readings and more.  It’s all free for members (except for paying your own way at the restaurant or theater, for example). BAiP also refers members to resources recommended by other members such as professionals – from doctors to plumbers.   The organization often holds informational panels – such as the one on chronic pain at the library a couple of weeks back.  Finally, where BAiP has a building rep (want to volunteer to be ours?), that person can help create a volunteer system, as Lenore did for Ruth, to accompany neighbors to the doctor or arrange for in-home services.  BAiP will also train neighbor-to-neighbor volunteers who want to spend time with the homebound.  Become a member.   BAiP has an easy website to use ( and flyers in our mailroom.  Unfortunately, BAiP’s activities are mainly in English, but those who want to start a different language group are welcome.  To contact BAiP, email

Yajaira Mejia, the manager of the Bloomingdale branch of the NY Public Library on 100th Street, has worked for the library for 24 years – and first got her library card at our very own branch.  She spoke about activities for people from infancy to the elderly – including some
talks and movement activities run by BAiP – day and evening at the library.  There’s even free tax preparation by AARP professionals who’ve been doing it for years.  But come by 9 AM on the day they’re there to sign up (first come, first served).  High school students can get help on April 6 with college planning and financial aid, and others can study English as a second language. Expectant parents can take classes with La Leche League, and seniors can “Move it to Music.” If you love Hollywood, come to lectures by a renowned film professor.  There’s lots more: check it out at the library itself or on line.

Other resources in our neighborhood: Goddard Riverside Community Center with programs and services for all ages  They have 2 local branches:  647 Columbus Ave. (for kids and cultural activities), and 593 Columbus with social workers, activities for seniors, and many political and educational forums.
Self Help also offers volunteer activities for seniors helping each other, and services for seniors including home care and activity centers and legal assistance.

There are lots more. Contact the Columbus Amsterdam BID (Business Improvement District), and see its monthly calendar on our website.   Also check out the weekly West Side Rag calendar.

GARAGE: The NYC Department of Consumer Affairs has found the garage to be in violation of the number of cars parked there.  Let’s keep working to ensure that they stop overcrowding.

We’ll be having some parties in May, so stay tuned (and volunteer!). 

 Our dues are $10/apartment yearly, and the legal fund contribution is $100/apartment yearly, payable as you can.   Give your contribution to our treasurer Joan Browne in 12F.

Let us know!

The Executive Committee
-          Sue Susman,  sue [at] janak (dot) org
-          Na’ava Ades, naavaa (at) g mail [D o t] com
-          Joan Browne, joanbrownefaison -a t- gmail dOt cOm
-          Denis Hayward, denis[dot] hayward aT GMail -d o t-com
-          Rich Jordan, rich214 /at/ a OL |dot| com
-          Steve Koulish, eskoolman |at\ ya hoo - d o t- com
-          Ray von Dohren, v o n d o h re n [at] com  cAst [dO t] net

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Sad News: Ruth Ellin has passed away

The Central Park Gardens Tenants’ Association
mourns the loss of one of our founders and long-time president


A retired actor and administrator in the Yiddish theater as well as TV and movies, Ruth was - always with sharp wit - a wonderful neighbor. As a one-person head of the tenant association, she was available to tenants day and night for decades.  She set our association on a sound footing financially and as part of a larger community. Our successes come from the base that she created.  After Ruth became frail, our indefatigable neighbor Lenore Richter managed Ruth’s care with the warm help of Amina Bah and other caretakers.  

Our condolences go to Ruth’s sister Lola Mendelson, Lola’s son Simon and his wife Sharon, and their extended family.  

You can listen to the funeral by clicking here.  Thanks to Glenn Richter for creating the file.