The Social Cost of Public Housing

By George Capsis In the 1980’s one of the familiar New York news photos was of swaths of gutted tenements in the Bronx and Brooklyn abandoned by landlords who would not or could not pay for heat, maintenance and taxes that exceeded the income from rent controlled apartments—they just walked away. The city did something […]

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A Final Pitch for Bernie—Vote April 19th

By Arthur Z. Schwartz For six months I have been writing for the WestView News that “presumed” Democratic nominee, Hillary Clinton, was anything but a shoo-in. I have kvetched about the media’s refusal to cover the Bernie Sanders phenomenon, except for a week after the New Hampshire Primary. I dare say that the Sanders campaign […]

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Open Chumley’s – Another Opinion

To the Editors, In a full-page advertisement that ran in the March issue of WestView, the faceless group calling itself “BarFree Bedford” claimed there is no “local support” for the reopening of Chumley’s Speakeasy at 86 Bedford. As a 27-year resident of 55 Barrow Street, I have been a primary and public neighborhood advocate for […]

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Chumley’s: The Legend Continues

Since I have a work space at 93 Bedford, directly across from and overlooking 86 Bedford, on April 5, 2007 I was at my computer (finishing a novel about a Greenwich Village woman) when I glanced out my street window and witnessed half a dozen young workmen, yelling in terrified Spanish, come pouring out the […]

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Meet Mia

WestView’s Mascot Playful, exuberant Mia still acts like a puppy at the age of thirteen. She probably has more Poodle in her than anything else but when her owner surrendered this charming girl to Maltese Rescue, Mia immediately became an honorary Maltese. Mia is truly WestView’s mascot, attending all the monthly Contributor & Production Meetings. […]

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The Peril of Open Cellar Doors

Dear George, Over the last few weeks, I have seen more and more cellar doors left wide open for extended periods of time. Usually, they have an orange rubber cone in front of them as the only protection to prevent someone from falling into the cellar from the street. And sometimes (an ever increasing number […]

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William B. Dunham, Storied Greenwich Village Band Leader, Dead at 88

William B. Dunham, founder and leader of the Grove Street Stompers, arguably the world’s longest continuously running jazz gig—same band, same club, same night, for over 50 years—died on January 11, 2016. Led by pianist Dunham, the Stompers, considered one of New York’s top traditional jazz bands, played every Monday night from 1962 at Arthur’s Tavern, 57 […]

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A Toast to Bill O’Donnell

Surprisingly for a bar owner, Bill O’Donnell, who, sadly, died last month, was truly ‘the quiet man’. Though a vital contributor to our West Village world, unlike other local personality publicans of the 50s-60s era, with bars bearing their own names—Louie’s, Stefan’s, Bradley’s, etc.—Bill didn’t play the front of the house. When I first hung […]

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VID

On Thursday March 10th, the Village Independent Democrats met at St. John’s Church on Christopher Street. Keen Berger reported on national and local election issues and club President Nadine Hoffman reported on club activities and state proposals to bring early voting to New York State. Tony Hoffman reported on plans for petitioning, which is needed […]

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Save Our Graffiti

By George Capsis I like to get calls—it gives me an excuse to break off from the tedious keying and talk to a human—any human. I got a call shortly after the March issue came out where I documented my frustration at not being able to talk to a responsible person in the U.S. Post […]

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INHERITED CONTEMPT

INHERITED CONTEMPT: Jake Croman, the son of Steve Croman—who is perhaps the worst landlord in New York—was caught in a tirade against an Uber driver. The video exploded on social media. The elder Croman has attempted to oust Nelly Godfrey from Lima’s Taste, her restaurant on Christopher Street. (Editor’s Note: Warning, video contains extremely offensive […]

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The April 19 Presidential Primary Ballot—Lots of Choices!

By Arthur Schwartz New Yorkers finally get to jump into the Presidential Primary process on Tuesday April 19. Polling places are open from 6 am to 9 pm. If you are not sure where you vote call 1-866-votenyc (866-868-3692) or type pollsitelocator.nyc into your computer or smartphone. Most people in the West Village vote at […]

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Maggie B’s Photo of the Month

A FRIENDLY REMINDER: Don’t forget to vote for the candidate of your choice in the April 19th Primary. Too bad this young lass can’t participate this time around! Photo by Maggie Berkvist.

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Greetings to the WestView Readers

By Bernie Sanders Greetings to the readers of WestView and to your wonderful publisher George Capsis. As you know I grew up in Brooklyn, attended NYC Public Schools and started college at Brooklyn College. I was the child of parents who spent their formative years surviving the Great Depression, and who taught me the value […]

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Memory: Six Degrees of Seventh Avenue South

By Allyn Freeman Fifty years ago this month, I moved into a top floor studio in an elevator building at 51 Seventh Avenue South near Bleecker Street. At that time, the “West Village” did not exist, just the term “Greenwich Village”—a historic, cultural, and romantic designation that invoked la vie bohème. The fifth floor apartment […]

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Single Payer Myths

By Alec Pruchnicki, MD Having been involved in the single payer movement for over 25 years, I have often had to answer mistakes, myths, and outright lies about it. After a while it gets tedious, but it looks like I’ll have to do it again. 1. “It is politically unfeasible.” —but not impossible. Even right-wing […]

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Stress! Tools to Help

By Ron Elve Some of us are anxious and unhappy when confronted with fairly trivial situations such as road rage, but others are quite calm even when facing truly serious circumstances such as terminal cancer. Focusing on your reaction to a stressful situation is one tool that can help you keep your calm. No matter […]

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West Village Original: Jack Dowling

By Michael D. Minichiello This month’s West Village Original is painter and writer John (Jack) Dowling, born in Woodbridge, New Jersey in 1931. After attending Cooper Union and teaching in Italy for a few years, he settled in New York to be a painter before eventually turning to writing. His stories have been published in […]

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Two for Jane

By Barry Benepe Major changes are coming to the five blocks of Jane Street. On February 12, building applications were filed to rebuild two existing commercial buildings at 11 and 85 Jane Street. Both are large sites occupied by low two-story buildings occupying 100% of their lot area and are themselves replacements of different uses […]

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Buying the Farm for Your City Table

By David Porat Morten Sohlberg and Min Ye are entrepreneurs who own several diversified food businesses. The newest addition to their collection is Blenheim Restaurant. The restaurant is in the same location as the Smorgas Chef restaurant which still exists in other locations and is part of their family. The inspiration for the central west […]

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A Grand Champion in the West Village

By Leslie Adatto Shelley Barclay and Mona Stiles are owners of 4-year-old Homer, a PBGV (Petit Basset Griffon Vendéen). They live on Bethune Street. On February 15, Homer competed at the Westminster Kennel Club dog show for the third time in his short life. He has been in the top 20 PBGVs in the country […]

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A Time to Listen

D’Agostino Head Answers Senior Income Crisis By Bob James These are trying times. No, more than ever before, they are frightening times. They are times when fear emanates from shadows we only dreamt existed before. It is a global, local, and personal fear that is amplified by political rhetoric and charged with singular agendas. And […]

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St. Vincent’s Park

WHAT’S IN A NAME: There is an ongoing discussion about what to name the “Triangle” park on Greenwich Avenue between 11th and 12th Streets. When the future of the old St. Vincent’s Hospital campus, including the triangle, was being negotiated half a dozen years ago, a commitment was given to the Sisters of Charity that […]

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NASA Memories

By Retired US Navy Medical Corps Commander, Jay Phelan February 1, 2003 9AM EST: It’s a beautiful morning at the Kennedy Space Center, and I’m standing next to an Air Force HH-60G Pave Hawk rescue helicopter listening for the sonic booms associated with the landing of Space Shuttle Columbia. Seconds pass, then a full minute, but no […]

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“Dancing with Monsters”: A Backstory

By Catherine Revland Berta Caceres was a prominent human rights and environmental activist, a co-founder of the Council of Popular and Indigenous Organizations of Honduras (COPINH), and the 2015 winner of the prestigious Goldman Environmental Prize. In the early hours of March 2, 2016, unknown assailants broke into her home and murdered her in her […]

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Uncharted Concert Series

By Joe Salas Following a triumphant 2015 concert series, Greenwich House Music School’s Uncharted concert series has returned to the chandelier-lit Renee Weiler Concert Hall at the Barrow Street school. Uncharted is a community concert series featuring high-profile local artists debuting performances of new work or new collaborations. The series covers a broad selection of […]

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Science from Away: Recently Read Science

By Mark M. Green (sciencefromaway.com) I have two children who are millennials, born between 1980 and 2000. One is a vegetarian and the other a vegan, attitudes toward eating that I considered strange until I read that the food-consulting-firm Mintel informs us that 13% of millennials ascribe to these eating categories and are getting their […]

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The Waverly Place Row Houses of Washington Square Park

By Justin Matthews The 1833 row of red brick townhouses on the north end of Washington Square Park, known as “Waverly Place,” belongs to the later phase of the Federal style, spanning the late-18th to early-19th century in the newly independent former American colonies. The houses built of red brick with Doric and Ionic stone […]

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Madly for Adlai

By Barbara Riddle In 1956, the most coveted political campaign pin was a bit of sterling silver shaped like the sole of a shoe. In the center was an etched whorl—a hole worn in the sole. It was a kind of large private joke: A news photographer had captured a picture of Adlai Stevenson working […]

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April’s Fool

By Keith Michael This is the day upon which we are reminded of what we are on the other three hundred and sixty-four. ~Mark Twain, Pudd’nhead Wilson It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s SUPERMAN! April Fool! It’s a bird: A Northern Mockingbird to be exact. A sleek gray super-songster with a white chest, lemon-yellow […]

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Gansevoort Street: A Missed Opportunity?

By Martica Sawin Just as I was about to start writing a commentary on the plans submitted by Aurora/Gottlieb for the south side of Gansevoort Street, an article,“The Craving for Public Squares”, by Michael Kimmelman, NY Times architecture critic, turned up at my door. Pointing out the ever-increasing percentage of Earth-dwellers now dwelling in cities, […]

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IN AND OUT

This month, the biggest “Out” news is the possible closing of the Associated Supermarket at West 14th. Due to a steep rent hike, the store may close by May. A recent rally, organized by Corey Johnson and other local elected officials, brought out dozens of residents worried about where they would find affordable groceries if […]

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Freelancers Unite!

Wage Theft a Growing Problem in the New Economy By Stephanie Phelan “We want to be paid, and paid on time!” This outcry comes from millions of freelancers and independent workers throughout the country. Our economy has changed a lot in the past several years, and because of that, the United States now has nearly […]

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What is Loft Living? Understanding the unique features of a NYC Loft Residence

By Brian J. Pape, AIA, LEED-AP, LRES New York loft living is a unique experience and it’s important to know a little history to appreciate what makes it special. Over 50 years ago, the industrial urbanscape of New York was going through disruptive, dramatic changes, as the many small businesses that had set up factories […]

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Books: Tradition! How That Fiddler Got On the Roof

By Ellis Nassour Tradition!: The Highly Improbable, Ultimately Triumphant Broadway-to-Hollywood Story of Fiddler on the Roof, the World’s Most Beloved Musical (St. Martin/Griffin; Trade paper; 240 pages; SRP $16) by Barbara Isenberg. L’Chaim! To life! And what a life Fiddler on the Roof has had. Since its 1964 Broadway debut, more than a half-century of […]

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Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP)

By Council Member Corey Johnson The fight to save the Associated Supermarket on West 14th Street has spurred conversations about food access and the difficulty that many West Siders face in obtaining affordable groceries. We must fight to keep stores like Associated in our neighborhood. But it is important to note that even with access […]

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Revisiting My Times Letter

By Maggie Berkvist When The New York Times ran my Letter to the Editor on March 4th, WestView News publisher George Capsis suggested that, since it concerned a subject under much discussion these days, (In fact, it elicited 395 responses in the Times’ online edition!) it should be reprinted in this month’s issue. In his […]

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