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Photos: Sandy Hits the East Village

We posted a few cell phone shots of Sandy’s aftermath yesterday. Here now are some proper photographs of the storm and its wake, by photographer and C-Squat resident Konstantin Sergeyev. Stay tuned for this morning’s update.

Avenue C is a riverKonstantin Sergeyev Avenue C becomes a river.

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Cooling Centers to Open Tomorrow

With temperatures soaring to the mid-90’s today and tomorrow, the National Weather Service has issued a heat advisory for New York City. Residents can avoid the extreme heat in one of the city’s cooling centers, which will be open tomorrow, an Office of Emergency Management spokesman said. After the official announcement, the list of center locations will be available here or by calling 311. — Laura E. Lee

Locals Bracing for a Boiler of a Day

weather_1JPGChelsia Rose Marcius Jorge Ortiz, 65, of the East Village, wipes his forehead with a washcloth to keep cool. Temperatures are expected to reach 95 today, which would match the hottest June 8 in the city’s history.

As we mentioned earlier, today is supposed to be a scorcher, and East Villagers are heading to the shade for what could be the hottest June 8 ever in New York City. Accuweather predicts a high 95 degrees, which would match a city record set in 1933.

Not surprisingly, perhaps, locals seem to be taking it all in stride.

“Not much you can do about it,” said Ivory Brown, 22, who keeps a mesh covering over the stroller of her 8-month-old daughter as they walk along Avenue A. She packs a towel and frozen bottles of water to keep cool, asking passerby to direct her to the nearest pool.

For those who can’t take an afternoon dip, cooling centers citywide will be open for the first day this season.  Here is a list of the centers in the East Village.

Ella Konarska, a caseworker at John Paul II Friendship Center at 103 East Seventh Street between First Avenue and Avenue A, one of the East Village cooling centers, said she expects a few more people to stop by for water or a cold glass of juice.

“It’s hard to tell how many, but we’ve had as many as 10 to 20 people in previous years,” she said, noting that the center serves about 70 older East Villagers daily.

weather_3Chelsia Rose Marcius Pigeons wet their feet in a Tompkins Square Park puddle – one of the few that has not evaporated in the heat.

Yet some locals are leaving the East Village altogether.

Maximo Pantoja, 69, ventures out to Coney Island when his favorite bench in Tompkins Square Park gets too hot.

“Not even my hat can help me now,” he said, pointing to his fedora. He’s just hoping that there’s a cool breeze by the waterfront.

So, what are you doing to beat the heat?

As Snow Approaches, A Sense Of Dread

supermarket 3Chelsia Rose Marcius Shoppers at Fine Fare Super Market, on the corner of Fourth Street and Avenue C in the East Village, stock up before inclement weather. Snowstorms have delayed deliveries, meaning bursts of long lines in an overall slow business season.
supermarket 1

When you visit a local supermarket right before a blizzard, it can sometimes feel as if Armageddon is just ahead, not a snowstorm. Some shoppers roam the aisle in an apparent frenzy, seemingly ready to grab everything they can get their hands on as checkout lines snake through aisles. Patience can be thin and the urge to stockpile food can trump the inclination toward civility.

And that frantic edge can remain even after a heavy snowfall as shoppers rush to replenish depleted pantries with the threat of additional snow looming. At least that was how it seemed at the Fine Fare Supermarket on Avenue C and East Fourth Street on Wednesday.

Customers may not have had an easy time crossing slushy streets, tip-toeing on icy sidewalks and climbing over marble-colored snow mounds to get to the market. When they did make it inside, though, they appeared ready to make up for lost time, quickly buying out the stock of staples.

“We had no bread, no milk, no eggs, no nothing,” said one cashier, Yesenia Urgiles.
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Icy Sidewalks Alert

Icy sidewalksColin Moynihan

The perils of the snowy season can take several different forms. There are the tall, thick drifts that entomb cars and end up forming ramparts that line the sidewalks. There is the gray slush that forms as those drifts melt, coalescing into pools and puddles – some of them deceptively deep – at intersections. And then there is perhaps the most subtle and hazardous result of the sorts of heavy snowfalls the East Village has been experiencing lately: slippery sidewalks coated with a thin sheet of ice.

This phenomenon typically occurs when sidewalks have not been shoveled completely clean. As temperatures drop, the remaining bits of snow harden into a slick surface that can send pedestrians sprawling. What’s worse, it is sometimes difficult to see when an icy stretch of sidewalk lies ahead. There are occasions when that realization comes accompanied almost simultaneously by a sudden loss of balance.

New York City law requires that landlords and businesses clear sidewalks, but anybody who has walked along the streets of New York City knows that some take that responsibility more seriously than others.

Temperatures tonight are expected to be below 30 degrees. Freezing rain is also forecast. As you walk – or slide – to work or to school tomorrow please take note of areas that seem particularly difficult or dangerous to navigate. Take a picture if you can, and remember the address. Then send the information in to us. We’ll do our best to look into whatever we hear about.

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