Meet Us at Bedford + Bowery

Over the course of two a half years, the word “change” has come up in many of The Local’s 4,200-plus posts about the East Village. Now it’s time for some change of our own.

Next month the Arthur L. Carter Journalism Institute will launch an exciting new site with New York magazine. Bedford + Bowery will continue to cover breaking news, big issues, and cultural events in the East Village and Lower East Side while also exploring three kindred neighborhoods directly across the river: Williamsburg, Greenpoint, and Bushwick.

The new site will launch June 17. As The Local publishes its final post today, please bookmark and follow @bedbow on Twitter. You can also sign up for B + B’s newsletter to get top stories delivered to your inbox.

We hope you’ve enjoyed this collaborative experiment in community journalism as much as we have. The Local’s robust archives will remain right here at – because we know how important preservation is to East Villagers. Thanks so much for reading!

Thank You, East Village

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A while back, The Local was featured on one of Jim Power’s iconic lampposts. Now that the site is coming to a close, we thought we’d return the honor by featuring the Mosaic Man in some tile work of our own: a collage of just some of the people who make the East Village what it is, for better or worse (mostly for better, we’re happy to say). Hover above the thumbnails to see each person’s name, and click through to read or watch our past stories about them.

We’re grateful that our subjects allowed us into their lives, to varying degrees. And we’re also grateful to everyone who has lent their talents to The Local over these two and a half years. Below are the names of those people, along with links to their writing and photography.

Contributors to The Local
Abe Peck * Adam Lehrer * Adrian Fussell * Al Kavadlo * Alan Abramson * Alex Gross * Alexa Mae Asperin * Alexa Tsoulis-Reay * Alexandra DiPalma * Alexandra Reali * Alexis Lamster * Allegra Kogan * Allison Hertzberg * Amalie R. Rothschild * Amanda Plasencia * Amanda Schupak * Amanda Van Allen * Amir Shoucri * Ana Maria Benedetti * Andre Tartar * Andrea Huspeni * Andrew Berman * Andy Newman * Angela Cravens * Angela L. Tu * Angela Tu * Angelo Fabara * Anjali Mullany * Anna Andrianova * Anna Louie Sussman * Anna Sanders * Anna Silman * Annie Cofone * Annie Fairman * Annie Rose Ramos * Anthony Pappalardo * Bayla Gottesman * Beth Stebner * Bhuma Shrivastava * Bill Di Paola * Bill Millard * Blair Hickman * Bob Rosenthal * Bob Simmons * Brendan Bernhard * Brian Berkovitz * Brian Rose * Britton Baine * Brooke Kroeger * C. Ceres Merry * C.C. Glenn * Carly Okyle * Carol Vinzant * Carolyn Stanley * Carolyn Sun * Cary Abrams * Cassia M. Reynolds * Charlie Frick * Chaz Kangas * Chelsea Stark * Chelsia Rose Marcius * Chris O. Cook * Chris Palmer * Christine Jenkins * Christopher Gellert * Christopher Matthews * Claire Glass * Claire Ward * Clarissa Wei * Clark Carr * Claudia Dreifus * Clint McMahon * Clint Rainey * Coca Crystal * Colin Jones * Colin Moynihan * Connie Szeto * Crystal Bell * Damon Beres * Dan Glass * Dan Kedmey * Dan Nguyen * Dan Rattiner * Dana Sherne * Dana Varinksy * Danny Gold * Darla Murray * David Amram * David Holmes * David Mulkins * David Schmidlapp * David Sierra * Dawn Lim * Dayna Clark * Devyn Rafols-Nunez * Din Clarke * Dominique Zonyee Scott * Dyan Neary * Ed Sanders * Edna Ishayik * Elisa Lagos * Elizabeth Hewitt * Elizabeth Vulaj * Ella Zhang * Ellen Moynihan * Emily Armstrong * Emily Canal * Emily Pitter * Emmanuel Touhey * Eric Gabriel * Erica Lee * Erica Martin * Erin Lebar * Evan Bleier * Fatima Malik * Francisco Valera * Frank Mastropolo * Gabbi Lewin * Gabriella Bass * Gianluca Randazzo * Gina Herold * Gita Reddy * Gloria Chung * Godlis * Grace Maalouf * Greg Howard * Guney Cuceloglu * Hadas Goshen * Hannah Rubenstein * Hannah Thonet * Harvey Wiesnenberg * Heather Dubin * Heather Holland * Helen Zhang * Heyang Zhang * Ian Duncan * Ido Nissani * Inae Oh * Iryna Neskoromna * Isabel Gottlieb * Ishmael Reed * Jacob Berenson * Jacob Sugarman * James C. McKinley Jr. * James Matthews * James Traub * Jamie Larson * Jamie Newman * Jane Bernstein * Jared Malsin * Jasmine Brown * Jason Katzman * jdx * Jenn Pelly * Jennifer Puleio * Jesse FishJessica Bell * Jessica Lee * Jessica McHugh * Jessica Pilot * Jim Kiernan * Joann Jovinelly * Joann Pan * Joanna Marshall * Joe Kane * Joe Pan * Joe Puglisi * Joel Zimmer * Johannes Neukamm * John Galayda * John Jonas Gruen * John Spingola * John Wilcock * Johnny Pérez * Jonathan Krohn * Joseph Bensimon * Joseph Neighbor * Josh Ozersky * Joshua Davis * Joshua D. Fischer * Kandy Wong * Karin Badt * Karina Kirnos * Karl Baker * Kate McGee Reyes * Katherine Diaz * Kathryn Doyle * Kathryn Kattalia * Katie Olson * Katie Wang * Kavitha Surana * Kelly Ernst * Kelly Knaub * Kelsey Kudak * Kenan Christiansen * Kenneth Lim * Kevin Farley * Khristopher J. Brooks * Khwezi Magwaza * Kim Bhasin * Kim Davis * Kim Deitch * Komal Patel * Konstantin Sergeyev * Kristian Gerhard Stromsland Jebsen * Kristin Buettner * Kwanwoo Jun * Larry Sloman * Laura E. Lee * Laura Edwins * Laura Entis * Laura Gurfein * Laura Kuhn * Laura Lee * Lauren Carol Smith * Lauren Foreman * Lauriane David * Laurie Gwen Shapiro * Laurie Kamens * Leonardo Mendez * Leslie Koch * Lila Selim * Lindsay Wengler * Liv Buli * Liz Wagner * Louie Lazar * Lynda Crawford * M.J. Gonzalez * Maggie Craig * Mallory A. Russell * Mara Levi * Marcia Krause Bilyk * Margot Wood * Mari Fagel * Mario Ra * Mario Ramirez * Marit Molin * Mariya Abedi * Mark Riffee * Marlis Momber * Martin Johnson * Mary Reinholz * Matt Heidelberger * Matthew Kraus * Matthew Pugliese * Maya Millett * Meagan Kirkpatrick * Meghan Keneally * Mel Bailey * Melanie Hicken * Melissa Cronin * Melissa Hernandez * Melodie Bouchaud * Melvin Felix * Meredith Bennett-Smith * Meredith Hoffman * Michael Clemens * Michael Herman * Michael Natale * Michael Pearce * Michael Sean Edwards * Michael Simmons * Michelle Altman * Michelle Regalado * Michelle Rick * Molly O’Toole * Molly Socha  * Nadja Popovich * Nasry Esmat * Natalie Montas * Natalie Rinn * Natan Edelsburg * Nathaniel Page * Nick DeSantis * Nick Young * Nicole Guzzardi * Nicole Pasulka * Pat Ivers * Patrice Peck * Patrick Rosenkranz * Paul-Benjamin Dousset * Peter Leggieri * Philip Ross * Phillip Kalantzis Cope * Phillip Pantuso * Phoenix Eisenberg * Porochista Khakpour * Rachel Arons Rachel Citron * Rachel Goldman * Rachel Morgan * Rachel Ohm * Rachel Slaff * Rachel Trobman * Rachel Wise * Ralph Feldman * Raquel Marvez * Ray LeMoine * Ray Schultz * Rebecca Hamilton * Rebecca Prusinowski * Regina Hing * Remika Rajkitkul * Rex Weiner * Rhea Mahbubani * Ria Chung * Richard Moses * Robyn Baitcher * Roey Ahram * Roni Jacobson * Ross Bennett Lewis * Ruth Spencer * Sally Davies * Sally Lauckner * Sally Mairs * Sam Levy * Samantha Balaban * Samantha Ku * Sandy Berger * Sanna Chu * Sara Sjolin * Sarah Darville * Sarah Shanfield * Sarah Tung * Sasha Von Oldershausen * Scott Kenemore * Scott Lynch * Sebastian Piras * Shawn Hoke * Shira Levine * Silva Shih * Simon McCormack * Simon McDonnell * Sophie Hoeller * Spencer Magloff * Stephanie Buck * Stephanie Butnick * Stephen Rex Brown * Stephen Robinson * Steve Kraus * Steven Burke * Steven Heller * Steven Hirsch * Sue Palchak-Essenpreis * Suemedha Sood * Susan Keyloun * Suzanne Hodges * Suzanne Rozdeba * Svetlana Kitto * Tamas Vilaghy * Tando Ntunja * Tania Barnes * Tatyana Kildisheva * Thomas Dooley * Thornton McErney * Tim Milk * Tim Schreier * Timothy J. Stenovec * Timothy Krause * Toby Nathan * Todd Olmstead * Tracy Levy * Trevor Leb * Trina Robbins * Tung Ngo * Urmila Ramakrishnan * Vanessa Yurkevich * Vivian Giang * Vivienne Gucwa * Yijun He * Yoo Eun Lee * Yoo Lee * Yossarian * Yuyu Chen * Zanne Hall

Arrests During May Day March From Tompkins Square Park [Updated]

UntitledDaniel Maurer Police loaded a man into this van.

Multiple people were apprehended by police during a May Day Anti-Capitalism March that started at Tompkins Square Park this afternoon.

At East 14th Street and Second Avenue, The Local arrived on the scene to see officers loading a young man wearing a black hood into a van.

A friend of the individual who at first identified himself as Etan and then asked to be called Gristle said, “They grabbed somebody from the sidewalk and pulled him down and arrested him,” adding that the man, who he declined to identify by name, was standing up against a wall doing nothing when he was taken into custody.

Gristle said he and an indeterminate number of people were protesting capitalism and oppression during a march to Union Square when the apprehension occurred. “They don’t want anyone who’s protesting to even exist,” he said of the many police officers stationed in the middle of the intersection, bringing crosstown traffic to a halt.
Read more…

The Day | Stabilized Rents Likely to Rise

Own itJoann Jovinelly

Good morning, East Village.

“In an annual ritual, the Rent Guidelines Board took only a half-hour last night to recommend preliminary increases that would range between 3.25 and 6.25 percent for one-year lease renewals and 5 to 9.5 percent for two years.” The final numbers will be determined in June. [NY Post]

“A 14-year-old boy allegedly bit a teacher at a Lower East Side school on Tuesday, police said.” [DNA Info]

Philip Nobel asks, “What names wouldn’t be on the alumni rolls if Cooper had not been free? What future talents will be thwarted by a lack of funds? We’re about to find out, and we’ll never know.” [Architect]
Read more…

As Workers Blow Whistles, Bikers and Pedestrians Point Fingers

IMG_9973Kelsey Kudak

Today, Department of Transportation employees were once again out in full force, scolding cycling scofflaws.

Last week, as bike-share stations were installed, we noticed the swarm of yellow-jackets handing out bike-law pamphlets and chatting up cyclists as they waited at red lights. Were these bike-lane babysitters actually a deterrent to “Premium Rush” types? Well, one cyclist peddling the wrong way dismounted his bike and walked it across the intersection, and another turned off the avenue after a DOT worker blew her whistle at him.

Brothers Jessie and Robert Nelson both received pamphlets. The avid cyclists dismissed the idea, floated by the Post, that the workers might be a poor use of tax dollars. “I don’t think it’s a waste of money at all,” said Robert, 31. “Pedestrian safety as well as driver safety is pertinent and a very appropriate way to spend taxpayer money.”

In fact, Robert thought the pamphlets should be more widely available. “I’ve lived here since 2004 and have never seen this,” he said after receiving one. Read more…

In ‘Sans Merci,’ a Republican Mom Seeks Answers in a ‘Lesbian Apartment’

imag1ePhoto courtesy Flux Theatre Ensemble Kelly (Rachael Hip-Flores) and Tracy (Alisha

The latest from the Flux Theatre Ensemble is a sensitively written play about dealing with loss and guilt. During their spring break from college, lovers Kelly and Tracy (Alisha Spielmann) travel to Colombia to help the U’wa Indians organize against an American oil company. There, a horrific tragedy befalls the young women.

“Sans Merci,” written by Johnna Adams and masterfully directed by Heather Cohn, begins years later when Tracy’s mom, Elizabeth, seeks out Kelly to find out what happened to her daughter. All the action takes place in Kelly’s apartment in Los Angeles as Elizabeth arrives unannounced from Chicago one rainy evening. Mother and lover skirt the hard questions about what happened in Colombia, until Kelly finally reveals all, with the help of flashbacks. Read more…

They Can Be Happy Underground: East Villager Proposes On F Train

A couple of weeks ago Amman Badlani, an East Village resident and reader of The Local, let us in on a secret. He was planning to propose to his girlfriend of over three and a half years, and he was planning to do it on the F train. We’ll let the young romantic explain why exactly he busted out a Victorian ring from 1900 (“just as old as the building we live in, coincidentally,” he told us) while deep in the bowels of the earth Sunday. When you’re done reading, have a look at our video of the big moment.

Monique and I met on August 14, 2009 – I know the exact date because I had gone to see Animal Collective play at the Prospect Park bandshell that evening. She was at the Tribeca Grand and somehow we both ended up on the F train afterwards. I had been in NYC for about eight months up to that point and hadn’t taken the F train too many times.

So I was heading back into the city, and I missed my stop at Second Avenue. Realizing that right as the doors were closing, I looked to the left to ask the person next to me a few feet away what stop we were coming up to next — and that person happened to be Monique. She told me West Fourth was the next stop, and I stood up to look at the subway map and figured I could just get out at 14th and Sixth off of the F and take the L over to my place (my apartment was off of First Avenue). Read more…

The Day | $10K-a-Month Apartments at Jupiter 21

EAST VILLAGE floristGloria Chung

Good morning, East Village.

Rents at Jupiter 21 will range from $3,000 to $10,000 a month. A resident of the building it replaced, which held Mars Bar, says that during the 1980s she could look out her window and see the glow of “60 crack pipes.” [Wall Street Journal]

In an opinion piece that’s getting a good deal of pick-up, Felix Salmon slams Cooper Union for pursuing an overly ambitious growth strategy in the face of debt. [Reuters]

The rooftop of a five story building on East Seventh near Avenue C is caught on film Sunday afternoon, serving a cautionary tale for summer barbecues. [City Room]
Read more…

Street Scenes | Ghost of a Gas Station

Gas Station Ghost SignFrank Mastropolo

Short, Strange Trip: Former Conservative Wunderkind Heads to Kurdistan

Screen Shot 2013-04-29 at 2.49.11 PMJonathan Krohn Smoking a hookah in Kurdistan

It’s hard to know what opinions a well-spoken, slightly ridiculous thirteen-year old Jonathan Krohn had on the War in Iraq and Middle Eastern politics when he gave his now infamous speech about the “four pillars of conservatism” at the Conservative Political Action Conference in 2009. Mr. Krohn insists that it didn’t matter then, and doesn’t now.

“We went to war in Iraq in 2003 — I was eight years old!” he told The Local last week. For the past several months, Mr. Krohn, now 18, has been living in the East Village (and occasionally contributing to The Local) as an N.Y.U. freshman. But now it’s upward and onward: last week, after being interviewed for a profile in The Times’s Style section, he left the country for a four-month stay in Iraqi Kurdistan, where he will report full-time for Rudaw, a Kurdish newspaper with an English-language Website.

Mr. Krohn is now on sabbatical at N.Y.U., and he doesn’t believe that he will be returning. “At this point, here’s my philosophy,” he said. “I’m doing the same jobs that I was planning on doing when I graduated, and I’m going to be in less debt.”

It’s hard to argue with him: the Times profile has already sparked interest from high-profile agent David Kuhn, according to Ray LeMoine, who threw a going-away party for Mr. Krohn at Heathers last week. After the sendoff, the two friends slipped into Chelsea hotspot Electric Room to party with Nur Khan and fellow Style subject Domingo Zapata.

Not surprisingly, the Times profile also prompted some Internet snark, thanks to a line about Mr. Krohn’s personal life: “In the midst of all the upheaval in his life,” wrote Susan Chumsky, “the one thing that has remained constant (‘unfortunately,’ he said) is his virginity.” Today, Mr. Krohn told The Local he is not in fact a virgin; he decided not to ask for a correction because he didn’t want the matter to overshadow the rest of the piece.
Read more…

Stream Iggy Pop’s New Album and Watch Him Live

Screen Shot 2013-04-29 at 5.02.06 AM

Iggy Pop — the man, the legend, the former East Villager — is suddenly everywhere: in a new Chrysler ad filmed with John Varvatos on the Bowery, in a new Criterion Collection video in which he recounts his involvement in “Repo Man,” and in a funny ad for his new album, “Ready to Die.” (Oh, and being played by Taylor Hawkins of the Foo Fighters in a new poster for the CBGBs movie.)

Not only is the new album streaming on, but yesterday NPR Music put on a concert at Le Poisson Rouge that’s posted online as well. Watch as The Stooges play songs off the new album and then invite everyone onto the stage for “Fun House.” And when you’re done with that, have another look at Iggy doing Sinatra.

Tile Bar: Mosaic Man Hopes to Raise $80K

“Mosaic Man” Jim Power, last seen selling belt buckles and creating colorful mosaics for The Bean, Porchetta and other local businesses is turning his attention back to the light poles for which he’s best known. The local legend just launched an Indie GoGo campaign in hopes of raising $80,000, so he can restore poles that have been damaged over the years. Contribute $100 and you get your likeness on one of them; chip in $2,500 and you get your own pole.

Check out the promotional video, featuring Clayton Patterson’s early photos of Mr. Power; look closely and you’ll even see The Local’s light pole.

The Day | Fire On East Seventh Street

Two Biker DudesSteven Matthews

Good morning, East Village.

A fire broke out at 230 East 7th Street, near Avenue C, yesterday afternoon. Michael Natale posted photos at Gog in NYC and in The Local’s Flickr pool.

“Anthony Davis, 24, was arrested around 10:55 p.m. Saturday after carrying a toolbox into the Waterfront Spa on First Avenue near Second Street and trying to push in several doors inside the business, sources said. He was charged with third-degree burglary.” [NY Post]

“15 artists have been commissioned to paint murals on storefront shutters along the Bowery. And the results are inspiring.” [ArtInfo]
Read more…

A Last Look Inside Meseritz Synagogue Before Its Conversion to Condos

Roni Jacobson

Workers started moving furniture out of Anshei Meseritz Synagogue this week, after the Landmarks Preservation Commission approved a plan to add a penthouse to the historic building on East Sixth Street. The Local recently got what may well be a last look at the synagogue before its conversion into apartments.

After years of trying to find a developer, Meseritz’s board leased the building to East River Partners LLC in a deal worth about $1,225,000, as reported in DNAinfo. The building’s facade is protected as part of the East Village/Lower East Side Historic District, but the deal allows the developers to convert the inside of the synagogue into luxury condos provided they invest $180,000 to accommodate the congregation in the basement.

“The issue for us is how do we preserve the synagogue as a vibrant, growing part of the neighborhood?” said Charles Knapp, a lawyer for the synagogue. Read more…

Mary Help of Christians Demolition OK’d, Preservationists Plan Rally

Mary Help of ChristiansChelsia Rose Marcius

A plan to demolish Mary Help of Christians has been approved despite preservationists’ efforts to keep the century-old church standing.

“It’s really a terrible loss for the East Village,” said Richard Moses, president of the Lower East Side Preservation Initiative. Mr. Moses said his preservation group and others requested a meeting with Douglas Steiner, the developer who bought the church property for $41 million last November, but never heard back. Now the groups are planning a rally for next month.

The application for full demolition was approved by the Department of Buildings yesterday, documents show. Mr. Steiner’s plans call for an 80/20-percent mix of market-rate and affordable housing. Read more…

Now There’s a Wine Shop Called Wineshop

wine shopFatima Malik

The East Village, home to a wine bar called Winebar, just got a wine shop named wineshop.

Aaron Thorp, an East Village resident and the wine director at The Standard in the meatpacking district, quietly opened the store a couple of weeks ago on East Ninth Street. It focuses on “smaller production wines” and “stuff that isn’t readily available in retail,” operations manager Michael Sullivan told The Local. “We have one local wine, out of Red Hook. We’ll be getting more as our inventory grows.”

Prices range from $11 a bottle to about $150. “We didn’t want to be the expensive wine shop,” said Mr. Sullivan, whose current favorites include a pair of $27 reds: Agnes and Rene Mosse Anjou 2011 is an unfiltered natural red wine; La Clarine Farm Piedi Grandi 2011 is also a natural wine.

The storefront near Avenue A, which briefly housed a Turkish fast food joint, has been renovated to feature exposed brick walls and furniture from The Upper Rust across the street.

wineshop, 438 East Ninth Street (between 1st Avenue and Avenue A); (646) 249-3290.

Cancer Spurs More Support For Release of Lynne Stewart

UntitledPaul O. Boisvert for The New York Times

Dick Gregory and Ed Asner have joined thousands of online petitioners in calling for the release of Lynne F. Stewart now that her family has announced that she is suffering from stage-4 breast cancer.

Ralph Poynter, the husband of the onetime Lower East side lawyer, said he learned that his wife has two to three years to live from a warden at the Carswell, Texas prison where she is serving a ten-year sentence for aiding terrorism.

Mr. Poynter said their daughter, Dr. Zenobia Brown, diagnosed her with Stage 4 breast cancer. He added that his wife, who is 73, has undergone chemotherapy at a Fort Worth hospital while “shackled” to a bed and that she has already written a letter to her warden requesting a compassionate release. He told The Local today that her application is being considered by prison authorities in Texas. Read more…

NYPD: Watch Your iPhones, Party Animals

UntitledDaniel Maurer

Looks like the police department is taking that plague of thefts at local hotspots seriously: we spotted a new sign on the window of Solas, which is no stranger to such incidents.

Definitely more sobering than what was previously in the window, below.

photo-41Daniel Maurer

The Day | Ray’s In Trouble Again?

LongbowScott Lynch

Good morning, East Village.

It’s official: Lower East Side institution Max Fish will move to Williamsburg, next to Nitehawk Cinema. “It remains to be seen whether the bar’s success can be replicated in Williamsburg, a neighborhood in the grips of the same rampant development that is chasing Ms. Rimkus now. The new site’s listing price earlier this year was $14,000 a month.” [NY Times]

And another institution is in danger: “Ray of Ray’s Candy Store, at Avenue A and Seventh St., who just turned 80, tells us his lease is up for renewal July 15, and that it’s likely his rent — now $4,100 — will double. But he can’t afford to pay that without doubling his prices, and is now wondering if, after 40 years, he’ll have to ‘give up the business.'” [East Villager]

More about the dorm that’s going into the former P.S. 64 building: “The basement — formerly home to a 400-seat auditorium where F.D.R. once riled the masses, and where the Fringe Festival was staged — would now house a bike room, fitness center, TV lounge and game rooms outfitted with pool, ping-pong and foosball tables, along with Xbox and PlayStation consoles.” [East Villager]
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Longtime Lower East Siders Aim to Unify Local Latinos

IMAG0950Samantha Balaban Left to right: Johnny Marines, Jose Rodriguez, Enrique Cruz

At age 11, Enrique Cruz worked at his father’s grocery store on East Houston Street. Jose Rodriguez grew up on the same block of Suffolk Street as Mr. Cruz, and now owns a deli on Cherry Street. Johnny Marines, a retired police sergeant, grew up in the Jacob Riis Houses on Avenue D. The trio recently created the Association of Latino Business Owners and Residents, an advocacy group for the neighborhood’s declining Latino population that already counts 50 business owners as members.

“We’ve all come across situations where we feel like we had limited resources,” explained Mr. Marines. “And basically that’s why we formed the association, because we want to give everybody a fair chance.”

Last week, The Local sat down with the association’s founders to talk bodegas, 7-Elevens, and opportunity. Read more…