September 2016 Newsletter

Now Open on Columbus Avenue

Two shops have opened their doors since our last newsletter. Here's a little about the latest openings on Columbus Avenue.

Astro West

Astro West carries fossils, meteorites, crystals, and other natural history objects in a gallery-like atmosphere. This location, an offshoot of their Midtown space, is well-placed, being mere steps (just across the street) from the American Museum of Natural History. In addition to specimens for the established collector and enthusiast, they also carry items for children like crystal growing kits, starter gem collections, and geodes.

Astro West
102 W.79th Street (Just west of Columbus Ave.)

Scotch & Soda

Scotch & Soda offers hip clothing for men and women that blends classic looks and modern streetwear. The Columbus Avenue location, their only shop north of Union Square, is the retailer's third New York City shop.

Scotch & Soda
416 Columbus Avenue (Corner of W.80)

New Tree Guards Installed

We recently installed twelve new tree guards and expanded several tree pits as part of our work to beautify the Columbus Avenue streetscape. The new guards will protect the trees and ensure that they continue to grow strong and maintain the tree-lined look that makes a stroll on Columbus Avenue such a delight. This fall, 3500 daffodil bulbs will be planted and the tree beds mulched. Come next summer, these areas will be fully planted with summer annuals.

Literary Events at Book Culture

Book Culture's events calendar continues to be jam packed, with their Columbus Avenue location hosting several author events and readings this October. The events listed below are free and open to the public - see their full event calendar here.

Tuesday, October 4 – 6:00 pm
Author Chris Grabenstein will launch his latest, Home Sweet Motel, from his middle reader series, Welcome to Wonderland.

Wednesday, October 5 – 7:00 pm
Political analyst John B. Judis will be on hand for a reading and discussion of his new book, The Populist Explosion.

Thursday, October 6 – 7:00 pm
Author Rebecca Solnit will read from and sign copies of her work, Nonstop Metropolis: A New York City Atlas, before being joined in discussion by fellow author Paul LaFarge.

Thursday, October 13 – 7:00 pm
Join Queens College professor of political science and mathematics Andrew Hacker for a reading and discussion of The Math Myth: And Other STEM Delusions.

Friday, October 14 – 7:00 pm
Children's author Anne Nesbet will read from her new middle reader book, Cloud and Wallfish.

Tuesday, October 18 – 7:00 pm
Griffin Poetry Prize winner Sylvia Legris will read from her new collection of poetry, The Hideous Hidden, and be joined in conversation by essayist Eliot Weinberger.

Wednesday, October 19 – 7:00 pm
Daniel Menaker will be in store for the launch of his latest, The African Svelte: Ingenious Misspellings That Make Surprising Sense, a work inspired by his tenure as editor at The New Yorker.

Monday, October 24 – 7:00 pm
Bestselling young adult author Gayle Forman will read from and discuss her new book, Leave Me, with fellow author Melina Marchetta.

Tuesday, October 25 – 7:00 pm
Sonya Chung will be in store for the launch of her new novel, The Loved Ones.

Satruday, October 29 – 11:00 am
Award-winning playwright, screenwriter, and theater director Caroline Nastro will read from The Bear Who Couldn't Sleep, her first picture book.

Book Culture
450 Columbus Avenue

@Macaulay Author Series

The @Macaulay Author Series returns to Macaulay Honors College this fall. Events are free and open to the public. Click here for more information and to RSVP.

On October 19th, sisters Regina Calcaterra and Rosie Maloney will share their memoir, Girl Unbroken: A Sister's Harrowing Story of Survival from the Streets of Long Island to the Farms of Idaho. Following a brief reading, they will be interviewed by fellow author Christina Baker Kline and take questions from the audience.

On November 10th, best-selling fiction writer Francine Prose will present her new novel, Mister Monkey. The novel follows the exploits and intrigue of a constellation of characters affiliated with an off-off-off Broadway children's music, weaving a darkly humorous and brilliantly observant story

Participatory Budgeting with Council Member Helen Rosenthal

For a third consecutive budget cycle, Council Member Rosenthal will take part in Participatory Budgeting. Participatory Budgeting lets residents and those who attend high school in Council District 6 vote on how to spend $1 million to improve their neighborhood. Past winners have included technology upgrades for LaGuardia High School, picnic tables for Riverside Park, and a mobile food pantry for the West Side Campaign Against Hunger. For more information, including a calendar of informational events and a form to submit project ideas, see Council Member Rosenthal's participatory budgeting website here.

Council Member Helen Rosenthal
563 Columbus Avenue

Graffiti-Free NYC

Did you know that New York City has a free graffiti removal program? Graffiti-Free NYC is a program of the NYC Economic Development Corporation that provides no-cost graffiti removal for commercial, residential, and industrial properties throughout New York City. You can learn more about the program here, and request the graffiti removal service by calling 311 or using this online claim form.

Department of Finance Amnesty Program re: Fines

The NYC Department of Finance (DOF) has opened a 90-day amnesty period to forgive penalties and interest for violations issued to individuals and businesses by the Department of Sanitation, the Department of Buildings, and other City agencies. The DOF amnesty program will come to a close on December 12 of this year, so don't delay. Get more information and search for open violations here.

Department of Consumer Affairs Commissioner Visits Columbus Avenue

Department of Consumer Affairs (DCA) Commissioner Lorelei Salas visited Columbus Avenue as part of the agency's Business Education Day outreach program. We joined the Commissioner and Council Member Helen Rosenthal as they made several stops to speak with business owners to listen to their concerns. DCA staff also visited many Columbus Avenue shops and restaurants to distribute helpful materials, offer advice about the City's consumer protection laws, and perform a fine-free spot check for compliance with City law. Among issues that were raised concerned the air-conditioning laws (pro and con) and the high rents merchants must pay.

Greg Hunt at his Café Tallulah with Council Member Helen Rosenthal, and Commissioner of the Dept. of Consumer Affairs, Lorelei Salas.

Commissioner Salas speaking with Chris Doeblin, at his Book Culture.

Commissioner Salas speaking with Randy from Really Great Things, while our council member ogles the beautiful clothing.

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