Thursday, January 30, 2014

Highbridge News: 50,027 Watch Rangers Edge Islanders 2-1, at Yankee...

Highbridge News: 50,027 Watch Rangers Edge Islanders 2-1, at Yankee...: 50,027 Watch Rangers Edge Islanders 2-1, at Yankee Stadium Photo by Joe McDonald By Howard Goldin BRONX, NEW YORK, JANUARY...

50,027 Watch Rangers Edge Islanders 2-1, at Yankee Stadium

50,027 Watch Rangers Edge Islanders 2-1, at Yankee Stadium
Photo by Joe McDonald
By Howard Goldin
BRONX, NEW YORK, JANUARY 30- The second 2014 Coors Light NHL Stadium Series contest at Yankee Stadium on Wednesday night was a sell-out just as the game played at the historic venue three days earlier. A crowd of 50,027 filled the seats to watch the two locals, New York Rangers and New York Islanders, play the first of two games this week, under the lights. 
After the exciting and hard fought game concluded, an elated NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman told reporters, “It’s been a memorable month of special events, three outdoor games in five days with more than 150,000 fans. This is a season we’ll all remember.” Not surprised by more than 50,000 attending a night game outdoors with temperatures in the 20’s, the commissioner commented, “Nobody braves the elements like hockey fans.”
The teams played with caution early in the contest. Unlike the high scoring game on Sunday afternoon, the first goal on Wednesday night was not scored until Islanders center Brock Nelson netted the puck with assists from Matt Donovan and Cal Clutterbuck at 18:33 of the 20 minute second period. 
A goal by Benoit Pouliot on assists by Derick Brassard and Mats Zuccarllo tied the score 30 seconds after the first goal was scored. 
The game winning goal was not scored until 4:36 of the third period. Daniel Carcillo netted the puck, his second as a Ranger, on assists from Dominic Moore and Brian Boyle. Carcillo did not become a Ranger until earlier in the month when he was traded by the L.A. Kings. His first game with the Rangers was on January 8. 
Ranger coach Alain Vigneault gave credit to the newcomer and other unsung contributors in a post-game press conference, “He [Carcillo] brings energy. You need contributions from your whole lineup. In an 82-game schedule, different guys have to step up.”
Both goalies, Henrik Lundquist of the Rangers and Evgeni Nabokov of the Islanders, played outstandingly, but the hero’s mantle went to the winner, Lundquist. The Ranger goalie stopped 30 shots, and only let one get in the net.
He believed playing one game outdoors earlier in the week benefitted him, “I felt a lot more calm. I felt more relaxed. For me, it was just about doing my job.”
The Swedish Olympian expressed his joyous reaction to the occasion, “It was another amazing night. It’s a great stadium, but you need the fans to show up to make it special. [It was] everything I hoped for, two wins, two sold out crowds, the atmosphere. It was two days I’ll remember for the rest of my life.”
Islander coach Jack Capuano, despite his team’s fourth straight loss, spoke positively about his team’s current play, “I think we play well, we’re just not getting the results. We’re playing well enough to win; we just have to find a way to win.”
Vigneault praised his team, which has won 8 of its last 11 games, “We’re in a one game at a time mentality. We’re defending better. It took a lot of courage to do those things [block shots] on this kind of day. Our speed is a big weapon and I think we’re using that element better.”
The Rangers and the Islanders face off again in their next game on Friday night, January 31. Each them plays only three more games before the Olympic break.

Highbridge News: Yankee Stadium Turned into Winter Wonderland as Ra...

Highbridge News: Yankee Stadium Turned into Winter Wonderland as Ra...: Yankee Stadium Turned into Winter Wonderland as Rangers Beat Islanders Photo by Joe McDonald By Rich Mancuso BRONX, NEW YOR...

Yankee Stadium Turned into Winter Wonderland as Rangers Beat Islanders

Yankee Stadium Turned into Winter Wonderland as Rangers Beat Islanders
Photo by Joe McDonald
By Rich Mancuso
BRONX, NEW YORK, JANUARY 30- They got off the 4 train at 161st Street stop these fans of two New York hockey teams, the Rangers and Islanders, and on their mission to spend the evening at a frigid Yankee Stadium. Yes, this was similar to a hockey version of the Yankees playing the Mets in mid-May or sometime in June.
Except the vendors inside Yankee Stadium were not selling cold drinks. Hot chocolate and coffee was the big seller. There were blankets covering the fans, gloves, scarfs, and their faces were covered from the frigid temperatures that dropped below 20.
Yes, for a night in the Bronx, in late January, Yankee Stadium was a winter wonderland. The puck dropped on the ice and it was nice to say that in about 65 days the stadium would once again hear the sounds of “Play Ball” when the Yankees open the 2014 baseball season in the Bronx with high expectations.  
The National Hockey League concept of “The Stadium Series” drew over 100,000 rabid fans of the Rangers, Islanders and New Jersey Devils for two games in the Bronx. They say this successful venture, one that has high marketability for the NHL will continue, though next year there is reportedly a plan to do this again at another venue.
Met Life Stadium, site of the Super Bowl this Sunday, reportedly will get to play host of the “Stadium Series” in the New York area next January. Why not? It is evident now that fans will come and root no matter what the weather conditions are in the height of winter.
“To our fans who were here both Sunday and tonight, simply,” incredible commented NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman who was all smiles. And he should be smiling. The NHL gained some revenue and more exposure. The Yankees were thrilled to keep their stadium busy in the off-season.
Wednesday night in the “House That George Built” it was frigid. However, the fans were loud, more of a Rangers presence as their team completed the two-game sweep over the Devils and Islanders. And at times, with the exception of the colors and an infield as a hockey rink, the ballpark resembled an October baseball playoff game in the Bronx.
About playing outdoors, where most professional hockey players got their start, Islanders goalie Evgeni Nabokov said, “You never really know until you’re out there and see that great atmosphere. I loved every second of it.”
And that was the overall consensus of the players, coaches, and the fans, the cold did not seem to be a factor. However, the one difference with playing an NHL game outdoors is the conspicuous absence of the hockey fight or brawl on the ice. As the experts explained, the game does not change.
But taking a punch in the cold elements is not a good idea for a hockey player, or for that matter any one else. The sting hurts a little more to the body outdoors in frigid conditions. So, there were no fights on the ice, rather a good and competitive hockey game with the two New York rivals.
“We’re playing well enough to win, but we’ve got to find a way to win,” said Islanders coach Jack Capuano after 2-1 loss to their Blueshirt rival Rangers. His team is 0-3-1 in the past four games. And like the game of baseball, where the Yankees are accustomed to winning in the Bronx, not getting a win in four games means a lot in the standings.
Because in the game of hockey, a stretch of not winning games in a competitive division where the Islanders, Rangers and Devils are situated, can be crucial. In this case, the Islanders did not prevail in what was their home game, away from the Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale.
The Islanders got the shots, but Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist stopped a good many of them. The Rangers and their fans are content getting the road win. Their team has won five consecutive games away from Madison Square Garden and prevailed in 13 of their last 19 on the ice.
“They’re a ton of fun,” said the Rangers defenseman Marc Staal who got a feel of outdoor hockey before huge crowds the past few days in the Bronx. He said he could play in 50 or, 40 of these games during the course of a season. 
The National Hockey League scheduled more of the outdoor games in stadiums this season including the “Winter Classic.” They are all popular and now New York got caught up in the atmosphere in a week busy with the premiere game in town, the Super Bowl.
You get the feeling the outdoor game will return to the Bronx soon. The overall consensus is, hockey fans in New York are all for it.
Comment Rich Mancuso: Mancuso

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Highbridge News: Chipolte, Cheesecake Factory could be coming to Ba...

Highbridge News: Chipolte, Cheesecake Factory could be coming to Ba...: Chipolte, Cheesecake Factory could be coming to Bay Plaza? By Michael Horowitz BRONX, NEW YORK, JANUARY 29- A spokesman for th...

Chipolte, Cheesecake Factory could be coming to Bay Plaza?

Chipolte, Cheesecake Factory could be coming to Bay Plaza?
By Michael Horowitz
BRONX, NEW YORK, JANUARY 29- A spokesman for the developer of the Bay Plaza shopping center said, this week, that plans for the new mall that is reportedly coming to Co-op City by mid-August, call for a food court with up to 10 small eateries and two full-scale restaurants to be among the 80 to 90 stores at the new mall.
Michael Stone, a vice president of Prestige Properties, said that the food court that is planned would be an upscale version of the food courts that are found in other parts of the Bronx.
Current eateries in the Bay Plaza shopping center include outlets of Red Lobster and Panera Bread, two of the best restaurants in the Co-op City area.
Sit-down eateries that the developers of Bay Plaza have approached for leases have included the Cheesecake Factory, Maggiano's Little Italy, Brio Tuscan Grille, and Texas de Brazil, the New York Times has reported.
Fast-food restaurants that have considered leasing space at the Bay Plaza food court that is envisioned include Bobby's Burger Place and the Chipotle Mexican Grill.
Macy 's and JC Penney will be the anchors of the combined Bay Plaza mall, which will span more than two million square feet and be totally enclosed when it is completed. JC Penney is the anchor store of the current Bay Plaza shopping center.
The plans for the new mall call for JC Penney to be at its northern end and Macy's to be at its southern end.
Developer says new mall will be something very special
By Michael Horowitz
BRONX, NEW YORK, JANUARY 29- A spokesman for the Bay Plaza shopping center said, this week, that he expected the long-awaited new wing of the sprawling shopping area to open by the middle of August.
Michael Stone, a vice president of Prestige Properties LLC, said, this week, that the 780,000-square-foot extension of Bay Plaza is “about two-thirds completed.”
Stone added, “The new Macy's, which will be an anchor store for Bay Plaza's new, enclosed mall and comprise 160,000 square feet on its own, is under construction as we now speak.”
The 780,000-square foot extension of Bay Plaza will mean that the shopping center, which is on the outskirts of Co-op City, will
comprise close to two million square feet.
The price tag for the extension of the Bay Plaza mall is expected to approach $300 million. The enclosed portion of the mall will be home to 80 to 90 stores, Stone said.
The new mall is expected to create 1,700 permanent jobs. And to have parking for up 2,300 cars.
The extension of Bay Plaza's new wing will be connected to the
existing JC Penney store at Bay Plaza.
In recent months, those living in Co-op City and those driving by the community have seen the new wing of the shopping center rising on its southern end of the Bay Plaza shopping center.
The shopping center's developers and elected officials have stressed that the impending of Bay Plaza's new wing is an exciting development for the Bronx and Westchester.
Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr., among others, have touted the development of Bay Plaza's new wing as a sign of progress in the Bronx and in the city as a whole.
Bay Plaza, which first opened in the mid-1980s and spans 1,300 square feet, is already the largest mall in the Bronx.
When the new mall is completed, it will be attached to the current shopping center. The entire mall will be enclosed, making it the first mall of this kind in the Bronx.
“We are talking to all the major chains about coming to Bay Plaza,” Sam Shalem, CEO of Prestige Properties has stressed. “This is just the kind of suburban mall this area needs.”
Shalem said that he is confident that the enlarged mall will have
major appeal to the more than four million people who live in close proximity to Co-op City.
Shalem added that he expected the new shopping center to attract those living in Westchester and southern Connecticut, as well as those living in neighborhoods through the Bronx.

Highbridge News: Islanders Gear Up for Showdown with Rangers in the...

Highbridge News: Islanders Gear Up for Showdown with Rangers in the...: Islanders Gear Up for Showdown with Rangers in the Bx. By Howard Goldin BRONX, NEW YORK, JANUARY 29-  The New York Islanders made ...

Islanders Gear Up for Showdown with Rangers in the Bx.

Islanders Gear Up for Showdown with Rangers in the Bx.

By Howard Goldin

BRONX, NEW YORK, JANUARY 29- The New York Islanders made their first visit to Yankee Stadium on Tuesday afternoon for a practice session on the ice and to experience the aura of Yankee Stadium. 

The words of the players were similar both towards the seriousness of the Wednesday night contest against the Rangers, the opportunity to play outdoors as they did as youngsters and of the awe-inspiring atmosphere of Yankee Stadium. This article will document only the views of captain John Tavares and assistants Kyle Osposo and Andrew McDonald as they are representative of the others on the team.
All here reminisced of playing outdoors when they were children. Kyle Osposo had the opportunity in his hometown of St. Paul, Minnesota. He recalled, “I played outdoors a couple of blocks from my house.” Used to cold weather, he said, “I will wear a turtleneck, nothing else [extra].”

The two Canadians expressed similar memories. John Tavares remembered, “In Ontario, I played a lot outside. Growing up playing outside was a lot of fun.” He felt the memories come back 100 percent while on the Yankee Stadium rink, “Feeling the air and hearing the sound of the puck.”

Andrew McDonald only felt the cold affect his ears and his toes. Of his childhood hockey experience, he stated, “This is where it all started. [We had] random ice patches, not a real rink.”

Being in a historic venue that houses an organization that considers great success a normal expectation every season had meaning to all. The American [Oksposo] seemed most familiar with Yankee attitude, “I have a ton of respect for the Yankees. To have an attitude of winning at all costs is a terrific way to run a business, an organization. When you come out there and it’s Yankee Stadium, it’s pretty cool. It’s awesome.”

McDonald described his feelings coming out on the field and anticipated how special Wednesday night’s game will be for the players, “You can feel the history of the Yankees team when you walk out of the dugout and see the Stadium. The Yankees are the most recognizable team in the world. I’m really looking forward to it [the game on Wednesday], being in the elements surrounded by 50,000 people. The ice will seem a little small compared to [the size of] the Stadium. It’s a very special experience. The fans will really enjoy it. The players will really enjoy it.” 

Tavares, a fan of the Toronto Blue Jays, was nonetheless impressed by the facilities in the Stadium, “They did a great job here. It’s unique. It’s going to be fun.” The team captain had a great experience at Tuesday’s practice, “It was really a great day. My family was here with me.” The players skated on the ice with family and friends after the practice concluded.

The importance of the result of every game to the islanders is huge. They are in last place in the Metropolitan Division, nine points behind the second place Rangers. A victory in each forthcoming contest is a necessity for them to qualify for the playoffs. Every player, the coach and all of their fans recognize this truth.

McDonald commented, “These are important two points. We’re going to be prepared,”

Tavares optimistically remarked, “There’s still a lot of hockey to be played. We know we have to play a lot better.”

Osposo spoke of the uniqueness of each contest, “Once the puck drops, it’s another game.”

The second highly anticipated and final outdoor game in New York City will be played before a sold out crowd of 50,000 fans on Wednesday night. It will be another great day in NHL and New York sports history.

Monday, January 27, 2014

Highbridge News: Rangers Defeat Devils, 7-3, at Yankee Stadium

Highbridge News: Rangers Defeat Devils, 7-3, at Yankee Stadium: Rangers Defeat Devils, 7-3, at Yankee Stadium By Howard Goldin BRONX, NEW YORK, JANUARY 27-  A below freezing temperature of 24.9 ...

Rangers Defeat Devils, 7-3, at Yankee Stadium

Rangers Defeat Devils, 7-3, at Yankee Stadium

By Howard Goldin

BRONX, NEW YORK, JANUARY 27- A below freezing temperature of 24.9 degrees did not dissuade a sell-out crowd of 50,105 from purchasing tickets to the first outdoor hockey game in New York City. 

Neither the cold nor the snow showers that fell on Yankee Stadium later in the game interfered with the contest or lessened the excitement of the fans in the stands. Strangely the game was delayed for more than one hour by weather conditions, the glare of the sun. 

The winning goaltender Henrik Lundquist of the Rangers told reporters after the game, “I was out there when the sun was still out and it was kind of hard.”

After an enthusiastic and entertaining version of a half-dozen of the hit recordings of Frankie Valli and the Four Seasons performed by cast members of the Tony winning musical Jersey Boys, the dramatic introduction of the New York Rangers and New Jersey Devils began. Members of both teams walked to the ice to the musical accompaniment of the NYPD and FDNY Pipes and Drums. 

The first goal was scored by Patrik Elias of the Devils at 5:36 of the first period. The score was tied on a goal by Dominic Moore 3.5 minutes later. The goals kept coming. New Jersey scored the next two goals, a second by Elias and one by Travis Zajac, to take a 3-1 advantage. Jaromir Jagr assisted on both of the latter goals. His two assists raised his career total to 1,035, which passed the total of Mario Lemiux and his career points to 1,732, seventh in NHL history. The 41-year-old, future member of the Hockey Hall of Fame is the leading scorer of the Devils this year with 44 points.

The happy moments of the contest for the Devils passed quickly as the Rangers scored the final six goals of the game. After a late first period goal by Marc Staal, the game was knotted at 2:48 of period 2 on the first of two consecutive goals by Mats Zuccarello. A fifth Ranger goal was scored by Carl Hagelin. 

Rick Nash scored his 18th goal of the season 29 seconds prior to the end of the second period. Nash extended his goal scoring streak to five games. He has scored in his last 11 games. The left winger is only two goals short of reaching a streak of 10 straight seasons of scoring at least 20 goals. 

Ranger coach Alain Vigneault commented upon Nash’s recent success, “He’s going to the net a little more. He’s an elite player and we need him to play like that now.”

The only goal of the third period was by Derek Stepan of the Rangers on a penalty shot, the first such score in an outdoor NHL game.

Devils coach DeBoer attributed the change in his team’s fortune in the second period to a mistake in plan, “We had a good first period. We started to open it up in the second and that’s not our game.” 

Lundquist was disappointed in his and the team’s start, “It was not a good start. My first thought was am I going to finish this game.” As the game progressed the goalie saw he and his team adapt, “I recovered and as a team we recovered after that start. The way we responded was just great to see. We took advantage of some mistakes they made. It felt like we had so many guys step up.”

Three Stars were awarded to: 1. Mats Zuccarello (2 goals), 2. Patrik Elias (2 goals) and 3. Anton Stralman (2 assists).

For the losing coach to make the following statement exhibits how great this rare hockey event was, “Other than the outcome, it was one of the best hockey experiences we’ve had.”

On Wednesday night, January 29, Yankee Stadium will host a game between the Rangers and the New York Islanders. 

Highbridge News: Future Hockey Hall of Fame Legends Brodeur and Jag...

Highbridge News: Future Hockey Hall of Fame Legends Brodeur and Jag...: Future Hockey Hall of Fame Legends Brodeur and Jagr Speak in the Bronx (Facebook Photo) By Howard Goldin BRONX, NEW YORK, JANU...

Future Hockey Hall of Fame Legends Brodeur and Jagr Speak in the Bronx

Future Hockey Hall of Fame Legends Brodeur and Jagr Speak in the Bronx
(Facebook Photo)

By Howard Goldin

BRONX, NEW YORK, JANUARY 27- The players of the New York Rangers and the New Jersey Devils had their practice sessions on the recently constructed ice rink on the field of Yankee Stadium on Saturday afternoon. Although the result of the regular season game on Sunday is important to both teams in the tightly contested Metropolitan Division of the NHL, the seriousness of the practice was tempered by the pleasure of the presence of so many family members on the ice with the players of each team.

After the Devils’ practice concluded, two special players, Jaromir Jagr and Martin Brodeur, were invited to the Interview room in the Yankee Stadium basement for a mass press interview. Although each was born in a different part of the world, Jagr in Kladno, Czechoslovakia, then a part of the Communist world, and Brodeur in Montreal Canada, they have much in common. 

Each was born in 1972, Broduer less than three months later; each is a left-hander; each was drafted in the first round of the NHL Entry Draft of 1990, Jagr the 5th overall selection and Brodeur the 20th ; each has earned an Olympic Gold Medal with his native country’s team; each has been an integral member of a Stanley Cup champion and each will be elected to the Hockey Hall of Fame shortly after his legendary NHL career concludes.

The two greats were good humored, patient and open to all questions from the journalists in the room. Jagr humorously spoke of the huge size of the locker room, “There’s a lot of great dressing rooms, but I’ve never seen nothing like that, so big you can’t hold a team meeting; if you make a mistake, the coach can’t find you in 15 minutes. “When he first entered the Yankee clubhouse, he jokingly asked for a GPS.

The 41 year-old was asked if he believed the frigid weather would affect him. He had mixed feelings contrasting New York’s weather to Moscow, where he played in Red Square and in Los Angeles, where the Kings and Ducks were competing that night, “This is like summer compared to Moscow. If I had to choose to play here or L.A., I would choose L.A. [he laughed]. It would probably be a lot better for my body to play in different conditions.”

He was asked to express his feelings regarding playing in Yankee Stadium, “When Czechoslovakia was Communist I didn’t even know about the NHL. Since I came here [24 years ago], I follow baseball, basketball and American football. It’s very special just to play here. I took pictures, Babe Ruth.”

The experienced professional was very concerned about how the result affect the goal of reaching the playoffs, “Any points and any victory can make a big difference. We have to play better than we did yesterday. We have to make sure we get some points tomorrow.”

Brodeur shortly followed Jagr to the Interview Room. After the Devils’ practice, Devils coach Peter DeBoer announced Brodeur would start in goal on Sunday. The veteran goalie reacted, “I’m happy to play a game; it’s been more than a week.” [Brodeur last played on January 18]. The veteran said, “They felt it meant a lot to me. For me, it’s the last one [rivalry game outdoors].”

The Canadian understands the importance of the Yankees and Yankee Stadium, “After 21 years in the New York area, I know what the Yankees mean here and to the world of sport. It’s a good feeling to be in this building. To be in the first game here is very exciting. It’s an unbelievable setting.”

Brodeur recalled childhood experiences when speaking of playing hockey outdoors, “When I grew up in Montreal, for us, we took it for granted. I did it every day; it’s great memories.” He felt he was overdressed even for the cold, ‘I had too much, gloves, ski mask two tee shirts; it wasn’t bad.”

Like his teammate, Jagr, he also spoke of the importance of the game, “It’s a big event, but at the end of the day, it’s just hockey. The points are important.” 

Of the idea of this series and the game in California, he opined, “It’s a great idea to have these rivalry games outdoors.”

Hopefully, those in attendance will realize they are watching two of the legends in NHL history, Jagr and Brodeur.

Tags: NHL, Jaromir Jagr, Martin Brodeur, Yankee Stadium

Friday, January 24, 2014

Highbridge News: Fans Slap Happy that Hockey Comes to Yankee Stadiu...

Highbridge News: Fans Slap Happy that Hockey Comes to Yankee Stadiu...: Fans Slap Happy that Hockey Comes to Yankee Stadium By Howard Goldin BRONX, NEW YORK, JANUARY 24- Preparations are currently unde...

Fans Slap Happy that Hockey Comes to Yankee Stadium

Fans Slap Happy that Hockey Comes to Yankee Stadium

By Howard Goldin

BRONX, NEW YORK, JANUARY 24- Preparations are currently underway for the construction of a hockey rink on the field of Yankee Stadium that will serve as the “playing field” for all three local NHL franchises, New York Rangers, New York islanders and New Jersey Devils. 
Each of the three rivals will have an opportunity to play an outdoor NHL game at the legendary baseball stadium. A Saturday matinee beginning at 12:30 pm on January 26 will feature the Rangers and Devils in a regular season contest. Three days later at 7:30 p.m., the Rangers will return to the ice to face the Islanders. Both games will be hard fought contests as they will count in the regular season standings, and thus, have a direct effect of the teams qualifying for the playoffs.

The intricate and time consuming work of setting up a hockey rink on the Yankee stadium grass is being supervised by Michael Craig, the NHL’s senior manager of facilities, who remarked with awe of his surroundings, “Yankee Stadium is a bit of a fairy tale. I’m from a small town in Western Canada, so to be standing here in New York at Yankee Stadium is pretty special.”

Craig was not the only NHL employee thrilled to be at Yankee Stadium. Matt Moulson of the Islanders, who was at the August 8 Yankee Stadium press conference during which the games were publicly announced, expressed his excitement, “I grew up in Toronto but I go to a lot of games at Yankee Stadium. When the Yankees aren’t playing the [Toronto] Blue Jays, I cheer for the Yankees. Every time you come here it’s exciting. We’ll be a little part of the history of Yankee Stadium.”

A veteran of the Devils since the 2006-7 season, Travis Sajac, spoke of his joy in making his first visit to Yankee Stadium, “I’ve been with the Devils for eight years and never been to Yankee Stadium. I’m kind of excited about that. You hear all about it and I love following the Yankees, but I’ve never been to a game.”

There will probably be several thousand hockey fans attending the games that have never been inside the showplace on 161st Street before and will also feel the thrill of bring inside the world renowned sports venue. 

To add to the excitement of the debut of NHL hockey at Yankee Stadium, the 161st Business Improvement District (BID) has scheduled Winterfest, an exciting day of related activities, from 10 a.m.- 4 p.m., on 161st Street. Placards posted in the neighborhood announce an ice statute of Yankee hero Mariano Rivera, free autographs, games and food. 

The statue was commissioned by the BID, in the words of its executive director, Dr. Cary Goodman, “to honor the pitcher, celebrate the renaming of River Ave. in his name and enhance the beauty of the district.” 
The other fun and interactive events were scheduled because, according to Goodman, “We want the neighborhood to be part of this historic event.”

Those attendees who never viewed hockey in person previously will be seeing it played at a very high level and outdoors, the manner in which youngsters in Canada first experience learning the game. 

The Coors Light NHL Stadium Series, in the Bronx, televised nationally one week before the starts of the Winter Olympic Games, will also enhance the interest of people in the borough and the entire country in the sport that will be played in February in Sochi.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

Highbridge News: You Call This Freezing?

Highbridge News: You Call This Freezing?: You Call This Freezing?   Photo by: Julie Larsen Maher © Wildlife Conservation Society BRONX, NEW YORK, JANUARY 23- Brown Bears...

You Call This Freezing?

You Call This Freezing?
Photo by: Julie Larsen Maher © Wildlife Conservation Society
BRONX, NEW YORK, JANUARY 23- Brown Bears at the Wildlife Conservation Society’s Bronx Zoo “bear-ly” notice the 8-degree temperatures and feel right at home in 11 inches of fresh snow.
To plan your trip, visit or call 718-367-1010.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Highbridge News: Joel Osteen Returns to Yankee Stadium

Highbridge News: Joel Osteen Returns to Yankee Stadium: BRONX, NEW YORK, JANUARY 22- On Saturday, June 7, 2014, Joel and Victoria Osteen will hold their 6 th annual “America’s Night of Ho...

Joel Osteen Returns to Yankee Stadium

BRONX, NEW YORK, JANUARY 22- On Saturday, June 7, 2014, Joel and Victoria Osteen will hold their 6th annual “America’s Night of Hope” at Yankee Stadium; an evening of hope and inspiration expected to draw over 55,000 people from across the country.   
This is the second America’s Night of Hope at Yankee Stadium.  The first was on April 25, 2009 — nine days after the new ballpark opened — and was the first non-baseball event held at the venue. These annual stadium-sized events have also been held at Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles (2010), U.S. Cellular Field in Chicago (2011), Nationals Park in Washington D.C. (2012) and Marlins Park in Miami (2013).
“Victoria and I love the people of New York,” said Pastor Joel Osteen. “We’re excited to be at Yankee Stadium again, and we believe people will be uplifted and filled with an expectation that their best days are still to come.” 
As a part of the activities surrounding “America’s Night of Hope,” Joel Osteen Ministries will reach into New York City’s local communities with hundreds of volunteers – many from Houston – in order to bring hope through acts of kindness and compassion. Known as The Generation Hope Project® this effort is a major part of the America’s Night of Hope event and, since 2012, has already provided thousands of volunteer hours of service through work projects at schools, parks, and community centers in Washington D.C. and Miami, Florida.  This year’s Generation Hope Project® will focus on mentoring — developing one-to-one relationships in which one person fosters the personal and professional growth of someone else.  Volunteers will have an opportunity to work with young people who need strong adult role models.  
To volunteer, sign up at
Tickets are $15.00 and are available January 25 at or Ticketmaster outlets.
*Not including facility and ticketing fees.

Highbridge News: Snow Days

Highbridge News: Snow Days: Snow Days The Do's and Don'ts in Snow Removal COMMUNITY BOARD NEWS N’ VIEWS by Father Richard F. Gorman Chai...

Highbridge News: Snow Days

Highbridge News: Snow Days: Snow Days The Do's and Don'ts in Snow Removal COMMUNITY BOARD NEWS N’ VIEWS by Father Richard F. Gorman Chai...

Snow Days

Snow Days

The Do's and Don'ts in Snow Removal

Father Richard F. Gorman
Community Board #12 (The Bronx)
“I will follow a set of deep tracks;
other people all stay hidden
as the cars rest under snow drifts.”
BRONX, NEW YORK, JANUARY 22- MATT POND PA is a New York-based band formed in Philadelphia by singer-songwriter Matt Pond. They have released a goodly number of
songs, some of which became “hits” and several of which have been used
in both films and television commercials, since 1998. Pond has been
the only consistent member of the group, although Chris Hansen is
considered to be the core member of the group. In the studio, they
often collaborate with other musicians, including former members, in
order to achieve their diverse instrumentation and expansive sound. In
recent years, Pond and Hansen have produced their recordings from a
cabin in Bearsville, New York. In November of 2010, their song quoted
above entitled "SNOW DAY" was featured in a commercial for STARBUCKS
for the java giant’s "BUY ONE HOLIDAY DRINK, GET ONE FREE" promotion
and seasonal beverage advertisements.
Although we have kept company with “Ole Man Winter” for approximately
a month’s time, we no doubt have severely felt his lash on a number of
occasions with some real Arctic-type weather conditions that he has
foisted upon us. In my last column, I addressed the bitterly cold
temperatures and offered some suggestions as to how we can remain safe
when the thermometer plummets. This time around, I should like to
remind all about some “do’s” and “don’ts” with regard to snow safety
and snow removal.
The most important “do” or responsibility when it comes to snow
removal is the obligation of a person in charge of any building or lot
--  be that individual the owner, occupant, or tenant  --  to clear
the sidewalk of snow and/or ice. Please note that there are specific
times designated for the fulfillment of this legal obligation. One
must clean the sidewalk no later than four hours after the snow has
stopped falling or by eleven o’clock in the morning if the snow/ice
was still coming down after nine o’clock (9:00 P.M.) the prior
Of course, one might legitimately and sensibly inquire if the
aforesaid duty remains in effect even if the snow or ice becomes so
frozen that it is literally impossible to remove.  The answer is that,
in such an instance, the responsible individual may spread sand, salt,
sawdust, cat litter that is clean and unused, or any other suitable
substance on sidewalk instead. However, it must be noted that the
aforementioned time limits still apply and remain in effect. It must
be further borne in mind that, as soon as the weather and other
conditions reasonably permit, the responsible party MUST have the
sidewalk thoroughly cleaned.
These prerequisites of law would appear, prima facie, to be both fair
and prudent.  Indeed, they are. They merely remind a conscientious
citizen of his/her obligations as a good neighbor. However, might it
be the case that one seeking to live up to this mandate might not be
able to justifiably undertake and realistically accomplish it?
Obviously, the response is YES! Does this excuse one, though, from
performance of one’s snow removal duty? The reply in this case is
conversely: “CERTAINLY NOT!” If one is ill, infirm, incapacitated or
elderly, the responsibility to clear the sidewalk remains in effect.
Such a person must then engage someone else to take care of matters
for him/her. Is this expectation perhaps too harsh or out of all
proportion? Such does not have to be the case. I shall return to this
point a tad further on.
Other stipulations relative to snow removal come under the “don’t”
category. These, to my mind, are a matter of simple self-interest and
basic prudence even more so than a matter of law. Regrettably, far too
many of our area residents  --  and I am particularly embarrassed to
report that there were many of my very own neighbors in Community
Board #12 (The Bronx) who are guilty in this regard  --  who
apparently are gravely lacking in knowledge, courtesy, compassion,
self-respect, respect for others, or a proper sense of civic pride and
duty because they DID  --  either in ignorance of information or
ignorance that indicates indifference and callousness  --  these
“DON’T’S,”  --  viz.”: covered and/or left snow-bound nearby fire
hydrants; threw snow back onto streets cleaned by our “STRONGEST,” the
men and the women of our New York City Department of Sanitation
(N.Y.C.D.O.S.); parked motor vehicles at an angle so as to encroach on
the roadway and consequently impede the safe flow of traffic.
To these folks, I merely inquire if they have ever considered the real
possibility of what happens in case of an emergency, such as a fire or
the need of a neighbor for emergency medical assistance. Will fire
fighters be able to connect fire hoses to a hydrant without expending
precious time and wasted efforts? Will an emergency vehicle be able to
get down a street obstructed by an improperly  --  and I might add
illegally  --  parked motor vehicle? Will I endanger others, including
drivers, pedestrians, and next-door neighbors, and/or their personal
property  --  e.g., motor vehicles, fences, homes, and front yards  --
by causing streets already cleared by N.Y.C.D.O.S. to be encumbered
once again by mounds of snow or to be imperiled by snow that has
melted and subsequently frozen?  Seriously, what is the major mental
malfunction in this regard?
Let’s not waste any more space or energy commiserating the
carelessness hard-headedness and hard-heartedness of the few. Permit
me to speak proactively and constructively to the many by respectfully
suggesting the following: check on elderly, homebound, or handicapped
neighbors in the event of a snow storm in order to insure that they
have adequate heat, food, water, and other necessary supplies;
(picking up from where I left off above with respect to those who
cannot clean their own sidewalks of snow and/or ice) lend a helping
hand to those who cannot clear their sidewalks on their own accord;
throw shoveled snow and/or ice along the edge of the sidewalk or in
one’s front yard and NEVER into a plowed street; be a good neighbor
and a smart person by clearing nearby fire hydrants and sewer openings
of any obstructions; if in doubt or in question, call your Community
Board, dial “3-1-1,” or consult the municipal website,
For those who do not willingly step up to the plate and unfortunately
only react to punitive incentives, please know that failure to perform
one’s snow removal responsibilities sufficiently and satisfactorily is
punishable by law with fines ranging from $100 to $350. Throwing snow
into the street is AGAINST THE LAW and will cost money to the
Sanitation Department (who must waste our precious tax dollars
repeating a task already done once) and also to the sinner, who, if
discovered, is subject to the abovementioned fines. Parking a motor
vehicle in a manner that jeopardizes traffic safety may lead to the
issuance of a traffic summons.  Impeding the work of our first
responders  --  N.Y.P.D., F.D.N.Y., and E.M.T.’s  --  can result in
both criminal penalties along with possible civil liability.
In closing, I address this final word to our young people. You are
good. You are thoughtful and considerate. You care about others. You
recognize injustice. You dream of a world that can and should be
kinder, gentler, and better. You have the capacity and the
determination to undertake this quest and to get it underway. We, your
elders, have failed you in many ways. We do not always give you good
example. We do not always practice what we preach. We have not always
counseled you wisely and imparted wholesome and virtuous values. We
have not made our schools the best that they can and should be for
you. We have not provided you with needed jobs, opportunities for
recreation and socialization, and productive outlets for your energies
and magnificent to God-given gifts.
Nevertheless, this does not mean that you, young friends, have nothing
to offer both to yourself and to others. You are not off--the-hook.
You have no right to waste your time.  You have no justification for
bad behavior. You have no excuse to break the law. You have every
obligation to “do unto others as you would have them do unto you.” You
have the capacity to so love and to be so mature. Ergo, I make of you
this simple request: will you be a good neighbor as God has asked all
of us to be? Will you be your neighbor’s keeper? Will you be that Good
Samaritan who comes to the rescue of those in need on the road of
life? Would you kindly consider doing some snow and ice removal in the
event of more inclement weather? Will you do it for your own family?
Better still, will you do it for an elderly, sick, or incapacitated
next-door neighbor? Will you make a grocery run for the homebound?
Will you start to be the good person and productive citizen that we
all know you can be? Please, just think about it.
In the meantime, I urge all to practice the sagacious advice of our
new Mayor, The Honorable Bill de Blasio, for his fellow
Stay warm and dry!

Thursday, January 16, 2014

Highbridge News: Boulevard of Death?

Highbridge News: Boulevard of Death?: By David Greene BRONX, NEW YORK, JANUARY 16- Two Bronxites getting ready to celebrate the holidays were rundown in separate inci...

Boulevard of Death?

By David Greene

BRONX, NEW YORK, JANUARY 16- Two Bronxites getting ready to celebrate the holidays were rundown in separate incidents, just two-blocks away from each other on the Grand Concourse-- during a 25-hour period leading up to Christmas Eve. The horror highlights the traffic problem on the Concourse which some activists are calling the new “Boulevard of Death.”
The still-unidentified 26-year-old male victim remains hospitalized at St. Barnabas Hospital after being struck by a 1999 BMW SUV at the corner of the Grand Concourse and E. 198 Street, at just before 7 p.m. on December 23.
At the time, the victim was said to be in critical condition and was not expected to live. The victim has since been upgraded to critical, but stable.
Police would later charge the driver Freddie Rodriguez, 49, of Cold Spring, NY with DWI.
According to the Bronx District Attorney's office, Rodriguez was arraigned on December 24 and released on his own recognizance. He returns to court later this month.
According to the criminal complaint, Rodriguez was unsteady on his feet and slurring his words when he admitted to a witness that he'd just returned from a Christmas party, when he offered, "I only had a couple of drinks. I can't believe this happened."
The complaint also states that Rodriguez would later tell a police officer, "I never hit anybody before. I had a couple of Chivas Regals."
Less information is available on the second victim, a woman who was struck by an SUV on the corner of E. 196 Street and the Grand Concourse at just before 8 p.m. on December 24.
According to witnesses at the scene, including two family members of the victim-- the victim was collateral damage after a 2-vehicle,  chain-reaction crash that pushed the first vehicle into the crosswalk.
This victim was transported to St. Barnabas Hospital and was expected to make a complete recovery.
A section of the Grand Concourse between E. 161 Street and E. 167 Street underwent an $18 million redevelopment project that was completed in 2008. The project included widened medians and improved lighting.
After completion of the project there had been talk to redevelop the section between E. 167 Street and E. 171 Street, but that plan has apparently stalled.
Longtime Bedford Park resident Karen Mendez, a mother of four children, lives on the Grand Concourse between the two intersections where the victims were hit. She says it has been, "many years" since any work has been done on the 10-lane thoroughfare.
Asked if she felt safe crossing the Grand Concourse, Mendez replied, "Only sometimes, because the cars often pass the red light. I'm concerned for my kids. They need to try something new like the cameras... because they (the drivers) don't care."
Other recent incidents along the Concourse include a May 19, 2013 crash in which Zuleimi Torres, 16, was killed and two others were seriously injured by an out-of-control SUV at E. 172 Street and the Grand Concourse. The unidentified driver suffered an undisclosed medical condition and faced no criminal charges.
On August 31, 2012, Melanie Sasser, a 29-year old deaf mother,  was struck and killed by a livery driver as she texted and crossed the Concourse and E. 198 Street. That crash was also deemed an accident and no charges were filed.
On July 13, 2012 Juan Rivera-Quintana, 42, was killed and a 34-year old man was seriously injured when an out-of-control SUV ran them down on the Concourse at E. Mount Eden Avenue. The vehicle only came to a stop when it slammed into a responding ambulance a block away.
Richard Haberman, 37, the alleged driver was charged with vehicular homicide, vehicular assault, DWI, leaving the scene of an accident and reckless driving.
On March 2, 2012, a 61-year-old man was run-over along the Concourse and Field Place in Fordham Heights. Police had no description of the vehicle that fled the scene.
Evyette Diaz, 28, was struck and killed as she crossed the Concourse at E. 165 Street outside of the Bronx Museum of Art. The driver of the SUV fled the scene and remains at large.
The Grand Boulevard and Concourse as it was originally called was opened to traffic in November, 1909.   

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Highbridge News: Baby, it’s COLD outside!

Highbridge News: Baby, it’s COLD outside!: Community Board News N’ Views By Father Richard F. Gorman Chairman Community Board #12 (The Bronx) “So very nice ...

Highbridge News: Baby, it’s COLD outside!

Highbridge News: Baby, it’s COLD outside!: Community Board News N’ Views By Father Richard F. Gorman Chairman Community Board #12 (The Bronx) “So very nice ...

Baby, it’s COLD outside!

Community Board
News N’ Views
By Father Richard F. Gorman
Community Board #12 (The Bronx)
“So very nice
 I’ll hold your hands; they’re just like ice.
Baby, it’s cold outside!”
BRONX, NEW YORK, JANUARY 8- Whether sung by Bing Crosby, Dean Martin, Vanessa Williams, or Lady Antebellum, these lyrics from the song “BABY, IT’S COLD OUTSIDE!” ring all so true as I pen this initial column for the New Year of Our Lord 2014. The weather has been extreme, to say the least, more characteristic of a polar ice cap region at either the top or the bottom of the Earth rather than the City of New York. Hopefully, the current climatic conditions are merely the appetizer, and not the main course, of what Old Man Winter is serving up for us this season!
Frigid temperatures, snow and ice storms, and slippery streets aside, there are many “warm” circumstances that have bestowed more temperate moments upon us in the first two weeks of our New Year. We have a new Municipal Administration in place at City Hall headed by the City of New York’s 109TH Mayor, The Honorable Bill de Blasio, the first Democrat to hold this office in two decades. He is accompanied at the helm of Municipal Government by our new Comptroller, The Honorable Scott M. Stringer, whose roots are in our very own Borough of The Bronx, and by the first African-American woman ever to be elected to citywide office, Public Advocate for the City of New York Letitia A. “Tish” James. While one of our City Council representatives, The Honorable Andy Cohen, was able to have his public inauguration at Lehman College on Sunday afternoon, 5 January 2014, our other Council Member, The Honorable Andy L. King, had to give way to our opening snow blast of 2014 and postpone his formal taking of the oath of office until Sunday, 12 January 2014. We shall be keeping our fingers crossed that only welcome guests, and not Old Man Winter or Mister Snowman, show up for Council Member King’s happy occasion. By the time that you read this column, the swearing-in of The Honorable Ruben Diaz, Jr. as the Borough President of The Bronx will take place as scheduled and, please God, in slightly warmer environs on Thursday, 9 January 2014.
The sort of extreme weather that has been thrust upon us always
presents challenges, not the least of which is to be faithful to God’s commandment that we be our neighbor’s keeper. There are any number of safety steps that a responsible neighbor should keep in mind and practice, not only in self-interest, but in that of those with whom we share this planet and that portion of it that we know and love so well --  i.e., the Borough of The Bronx. Among them are the following:
GUARD AGAINST FROSTBITE: With wind chills thrusting us into sub-zero degree air temperatures, exposed skin can get frostbitten in minutes and hypothermia is a major threat. Wear mittens instead of gloves, particularly those made of leather; dress in layers of warm clothing; and anyone who becomes wet should retreat indoors immediately. Unless absolutely essential, stay home and, for those venturing into the frigid outdoors, be certain that all body parts are well covered and protected.
CHECK THE CAR BATTERY: Batteries three years of age or older may not be able to get one’s motor vehicle started or to be “jumped” after being exposed to temperatures below zero degrees Fahrenheit (0ºF) for an extended period of time.
TURN DOWN THE THERMOSTAT: Keeping one’s residential thermostat relatively low at sixty-eight degrees Fahrenheit (68ºF) saves money on one’s heating bills as well as helps to prevent a power shortage and/or blackout.
BE CAUTIOUS IN UTILIZING SUPPLEMENTAL HEATING DEVICES: Space heaters, stoves, ovens, and kerosene or propane heaters that should only be employed outdoors are an all-too-common cause of carbon monoxide poising or even death and are the origin of approximately 50,000 residential fires and some 150 fatalities per annum.
PROTECT WATER PIPES: Freezing water that expands in pipes causes the pipes to burst so pay heed to any pipes that are exposed to low temperatures (such as those in basements, attics, garages, or crawl spaces) and lines for outdoor sprinklers and swimming pools.
CHECK ON ELDERLY, INFIRM, AND CHALLENGED NEIGHBORS: Do not neglect to make certain that these most dependent of God’s Children are warm, safe, nourished, and in adequate supply of food and water.
Space and the attention span of you, dear readers and friends, prevent me from sharing some thoughts about handling snowfall and the regrettable and somewhat selfish habits and practices of too many of our neighborhood residents with respect thereto. So that they are not lost, especially on those guilty of making use of them, I shall turn attention to them the next time we meet. Suffice it to say in the meanwhile, though, that my good Friend, Commissioner of Sanitation John J. Doherty, and his team did their usual bang-up job of getting our streets salted and cleared of snow last week. Commissioner Doherty has been asked to remain for the time being at the helm of the New York City Department of Sanitation (N.Y.C.D.O.S.) and, if he is willing and Mayor De Blasio so determines, it would be a blessing to see this life-long public servant in N.Y.C.D.O.S. remain behind his desk at 125 Worth Street in Manhattan.
May God bless us all with a Healthy and Peaceful 2014!
Until next time, that is it for this time!