City Employees Give Blood at City Hall

WPCNR MAIN STREET PHOTO JOURNAL. October 15, 2002: City employees dropped by Common Council chambers today to give blood to the Hudson Valley Division of the New York Blood Center. As of 2:30 PM, 23 pints of blood had been collected with more city workers lining up to give of themselves.

WATER DEPARTMENT TURNS OUT TO GIVE BLOOD: Ricardo Azabache of the Hudson Valley Divsion of the New York Blood Center, right, prepares to draw blood from Jim Covert, of the White Plains Water Department this afternoon. Covert says he gives blood two to three times a year. Approximately 15 to 18 members of the Water Department showed up to donate their blood in the drive.
Photo by WPCNR News

RIGHT BEHIND HIM was Jeff Fazzinga, another member of the Water Department, whose blood is a rare type that Delore Robinson of the New York Blood Center, was particular helpful as a way to save babies needing his rare blood type. Ms. Robinson was checking Jeff’s blood pressure and heart rate to make sure he fit the physical guidelines for blood donators. All persons donating are given a physical check up, including blood pressure and heart rate. Last year the city drive netted 28 pints of blood, so donators were coming in ahead of last year’s pace.
Photo by WPCNR News

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Knights Goal Line Stands Hold off Tigers, 24-22.

WPCNR PRESS BOX. By John F. Bailey. October 12, 2002 UPDATED 11:00 PM: White Plains was 2 yards away from the go-ahead “6,” and it was 4th down with 3 minutes, 49 seconds to go. The Tiger faithful were roaring. The Knights followers were screaming for “Defense.” One big play was coming up.

TURNED ASIDE ON 4TH AND GOAL: After three handoffs to Spencer Ridenhour had gotten the ball to the 2, the call went to Darrell Mack. Churning valiantly into the pile in the pelting late afternoon rain, the Knights held him off. When the referees untangled the pile,Mack was on his back the ball on his chest, six inches from paymud. Mount Vernon had held, and the Tigers were done. The 24-22 loss was the Tigers’ best effort of the season with only one turnover on a rainswept Saturday afternoon.
Photo by WPCNR Sports

Mount Vernon took over and was forced to punt from their goal line, but Mount Vernon’s Coach, Ric Wright, made the absolute right call, he instructed his punter to take a safety, rather than punt, necessitating a free kick from the 20.

Outstanding clock management

Wright also showed judicious use of the clock calling time out before the White Plains 4th and goal, which might have watered down Tiger adrenaline just enough. Wright also milked the clock beautifully on the count down to the safety play.

On the ensuing kick, White Plains fumbled, the only fumble of the day, and Mount Vernon ran down the clock until 20 seconds were left. Mike Devere threw one pass to Mack at the 15 which was tipped away and was intercepted on his last ditch throw to the far sideline, and Mount Vernon remained undefeated.

It was a remarkably error free game considering the slanting rain that fell during the first and fourth quarters.

80 yard kickoff return stands up for Mount Vernon

Mount Vernon’s winning touchdown came on an 80 yard kick off return with one minute to go in the third quarter, right after White Plains had taken the lead, 20-16. Deshawn Washington ran through the entire White Plains team slipping through tacklers and breaking out of the scrum at his own 40 and lighting out for the near sideline, and down the alley. 80 yards, six points.

Tackling was difficult all day as runners were ahead of the tacklers, thanks to the rainsoaked uniforms, wet hands and the treacherous footing slowing down defender cuts and pursuits.

Touchdown Save, too.

Washington had also saved a touchdown by bringing down Darrell Mack on the sideline at the 30 yard line of Mount Vernon on the last play of the first half. Darrell had just made a beautiful interception and was returning his pickoff of Knight pass about 50 yards to the vicinity of the 30. Washington caught up to Darrell and saved 6 points with a looming tackle, using his height advantage to overpower Mack’s desparate straight arm and bring him down.

Ridenhour Scores three touchdowns

The Tigers started fast, taking the opening kickoff and after an encroachment penalty gave them a first down on the 50, Spencer Ridenhour rambled 40 yards to the Knight five. He punched in from 3 yards out for a 7-0 lead with the point after just two minutes of the First Quarter. He was to score two more touchdowns.

White Plains moved the ball very well against Mount Vernon, showing their most consistent offensive display of the season pushing them off the ball afternoon, except once.

Mount Vernon strikes back.

The Knights speed immediately got the lead back when DeShawn Washington dashed 36 yards to tie the score, and a run for 2-points put Vernon ahead 8-7, with 30 seconds. Only 6 minutes had gone by in the game.

KNIGHTS STOP IN EARLY 2ND QUARTER pushed the Tigers back from the Knight 5 to the 10, and on 4th down, Tony Ciaramella attempted a 25 yard field goal which fell just wide right.
Photo by WPCNR Sports

After the exchange, the Knights Qb appeared about to be sacked at his own 45, when he hit a receiver across the middle who eluded two Tigers and raced to the White Plains 10. Washington took it in for the score moments later, and again added a 2-point conversion and it was 16-7.

Photo by WPCNR Sports

The Tiger comeback in the second quarter was sparked by a brilliant 3rd and 5 pass play at mid-field from Mike Devere to Terrell Smith. Smith slipped behind the Knight secondary wide open turned to face Mike and Devere hit him with a strike. Terrell lit out for the far side of the field and reached the Knights’ 10.

Three plays later, on 4th Down, Spencer Ridenhour powered in for the touchdown that with the point, closed the gap to 16-14 at intermission. On the last play of the half Darrell Mack was caught after 60 yard pass interception return that almost gave White Plains the lead.

Second Half Drama

At the beginning of the second half, the Tigers stopped Mount Vernon on the Knights first series, could not move, then Terrell Smith intercepted a Knight pass, returning it to the White Plains 28. From there the Tigers started a drive.

The drive moved doggedly, with the Tigers alternating runs between Darrell Mack and Spencer Ridenhour until they were stalled on 3rd and 5 at the Knights 47. Once again Devere dropped back. Incredibly, Terrell Smith, good old number 19, had slipped behind the Knights backpedaling secondary again.

Devere landed it right there and the chase was on. Smith rambled 42 yards to the Knights 5 before being surrounded and mug-tackled at the 5 stripe because he refused to go down.

TOUCHDOWN! TOUCHDOWN! Spencer Ridenhour gives the Tigers the lead with a minute to go in the third quarter with a power surge from the 2 into the promised land.
Photo by WPCNR Sports

On the ensuing kickoff, DeShawn Washington, ran back the ball 80 yards for the winning touchdown which was preserved by the goalline stand with 3:49 to go in the game.

After punt exchanges in the fourth quarter, the Tigers took over at their own 45 because of a Mount Vernon mistake. Eschewing a punt on 4th and 3, Mount Vernon attempted a hand-off, messing up the snap. The Tigers recovered at their own 48. With a third and 5 on the Knight 48, it happened again.

Again, Terrell Smith gave the Knights secondary the slip, getting behind them, turning, catching a strike from QB Mike (Devere). “Tito” was caught from behind at the 10. This set up the final 4 plays of the drive ending with the Tigers unable to punch it in from the 2 for the lead.

DEFINING MOMENT: With both Tiger fans and Knights fans screaming, the tension mounted as the final play of the Tiger drive for the go-aheader approached.
Photo by WPCNR Sports

The Tiger offense had its best day ever, unofficially gaining over 300 yards. They pushed the Knights defense around most of the afternoon. They came away twice inside the 5 yard line without scoring, though, as the Knight defense spread the field well and bunched the middle just enough to make two last stands.

Some day, the Tigers will win one of these humdingers. The Tigers are 3-3.

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Sayegh, Tuckahoe grad, Debates Paulin at His Old Stomping Grounds

WPCNR SATURDAY REVIEW. From the Sayegh Media Center. (EDITED) October 12, 2002:Tony Sayegh, candidate for the New York State Assembly in the 88th District, conducted a lively debate with his opponent, Amy Paulin, at his old high school in Tuckahoe. The debate was effectively coordinated by the school administrators and offered a firsthand view of the political process in action. Sayegh and his opponent, Amy Paulin for the 88th Assembly District appears at the White Plains Public Library Tuesday at the League of Women Voters Candidates Forum beginning at 7:00 PM, 100 Martine Avenue, 2nd floor.

Sayegh began by stating that, “I am extremely proud to be back at my alma mater, speaking in front of so many of the dedicated and influential educators who kindled my desire to pursue public service.”

The students in attendance had spent the week preparing questions for both candidates and their efforts definitely paid off. The debate was filled with thoughtful and intelligent questions from start to finish.

“Having an alum like Tony come back to his old high school was very exciting to see. He is just such an energizing and dynamic person and he sets a great example for kids our age to get involved,” said Tuckahoe high school student Stephanie Martino.

Sayegh engaged each question with honesty and enthusiasm, particularly when noting his disappointment over the Democrats in the Assembly playing politics as usual by blocking common sense legislation regarding terrorism and child safety.

“I have known Tony since his days in our Tuckahoe schools and was very impressed watching him grow up in this community. I always knew that he would follow his heart and enter public service on behalf of the town he grew up in and am proud to say that, I will be voting for him in November,” remarked Judith Almonte.

Sayegh closed by saying, “Whatever you take from this debate today, I hope that you ultimately recognize the very important role you will have to play in your community.”

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Mayor Honors City Employees with 25 Years Service at Common Council

WPCNR WHITE PLAINS NEWS PHOTO OF THE WEEK. From City Hall News Bureau. October 12, 2002: The City of White Plains held a recognition ceremony for employees who have served the city for twenty-five years or more Monday evening. Here they are, with Mayor Joseph Delfino posed in the famous City Hall Rotunda to commemorate the occasion.

25 YEARS OR MORE TAKING CARE OF THE PEOPLE’S BUSINESS: The Employees, L to R, are: Richard Lyman, Public Safety-Fire Department, Deveria Searcy, Youth Bureau, Arthur Bitting, DPW-Sanitation, Barbara Wenglin, Library, Mayor Joseph Delfino, Yvonne Charles, Library, and Paulette Minieri-Siino, Building Dept-Zoning Board. The elite six were honored for their more than quarter century of service to the city at the October 7 Common Council meeting.
City Hall Photo

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Fort Hill Players Premier Tony Touted Art at 8 Tonite.

WPCNR WHITE PLAINS VARIETY. October 11, 2002:The curtain went up on the Fort Hill Players first 02-03 production, the Tony Award Winning comedy, “Art” Friday evening at Rochambeau School, 228 Fischer Avenue. Saturday there are two performances, a matinee at 2 PM, and the evening curtain at 8 PM. Tickets are $14 at the door, Seniors and students, $12, $6 Children under 12. For Ticket Availability or order by phone, contact 421-0008.

THREE GUYS AND A PAINTING: Scene from the dress rehearsal of “Art” premiering Friday night at Rochambeau School, Fisher Avenue. Observe the adult, hysterical breakdown of friendships as differing tastes and opinons clash with hysterical results! D. Scott Faubel as Marc, R. J. D’Amato as Serge, and Larry Reina as Yvan are shown in a recent dress rehearsal.
Photo by Fort Hill Players

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Bradley Team Moves Up in County Democratic Committee

WPCNR AFTERNOON TRIB & POST. From County Democratic Committee Media Center. (EDITED) October 11, 2002:At the recent Westchester County Democratic Convention, White Plains
residents Jonathan Appel and Tim James were elected to posts as
Treasurer and Vice Chair, respectively, of the County Democratic

These positions give White Plains three powerful voices on
the County Dems Executive Committee – the third member being current
White Plains Democratic Chair Adam Bradley, soon to be presumably elected to a seat in the NY State Assembly.

Appel, an accountant, and James, a lawyer, were unanimously elected by the delegates representing Democrats in the 6 cities and 19 towns of Westchester.

George Latimer, newly elected Chairman of the County Party praised the re-election of Appel, and the election of James:

“Jonathan and Tim are two bright stars among our team members. They bring specific expertise – and energy – to their responsibilties. Certainly, White Plains will be well-represented by them in party circles”.

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Scarsdale PB Takes Up Realm Senior Project Oct 23. Police: Fire Was Arson

WPCNR EVENING CITY STAR REPORTER. By John F. Bailey. October 11, 2002:The Realm Senior Citizen Assisted Living Project planned for the rocky wooded tract of forest next to the Ethical Culture Society of Westchester off Saxon Woods Road will be before the Scarsdale Planning Board again Wednesday, October 23, the Scarsdale Village Planner told WPCNR Thursday. Elizabeth Marrinan also told WPCNR that the Scarsdale Police Department is investigating last week’s fire on the site as having been deliberately set.
Ms. Marrinan brought WPCNR up-to-date on where the project is in the Scarsdale Planning Board review process. She said the 117-unit, 3-story project will come back to the Board on October 23 to report on hydrological issues involving the Mamaroneck River which runs through the property, and the design of the bridge crossing the river. Asked if the Planning Board was leaning towards approving the project based on satisfactory answers, she said she could not tell at this time.

WPCNR asked if last week’s fire that has been determined to be definitely set at vacant house on the property, causing a jam-up of traffic on two-lane Saxon Woods Road had any affect on the Planning Board’s consideration of the project. Marrinan said the Planning Board had made it clear to Realm, that if the project were to be approved, the developer would have to have Saxon Wood Road be widened and the bridge over the Mamaroneck River to be widened to accommodate the increased traffic.

Realm Must go to City for Road Improvements.

She said that it was up to Realm, the developer, to obtain approval for widening of the road from the City of White Plains. This is one of 14 approvals Realm must receive from the City of White Plains to execute the project. The city is opposed to the project in principle.

Fire at vacant house said not to be an accident.

Lieutenant Bryant Clark, spokesman for the Scarsdale Police Department told WPCNR that the arson investigator for the Scarsdale Fire Department had told the police that the fire that took place on the property last week, which left only walls of the home standing, was not an accident, and the police are investigating the matter as a definite arson.

Clark said there was indication that the vacant house had been used for impromtu parties in the past, but the fire appeared to be “intentionally set,” and not an accident, “based on the physical evidence.” Chemical analysis of evidence taken from the scene is still being analyzed by the Westchester County Forensics Lab as of Thursday afternoon, he reported, and said he would keep WPCNR informed.

Lieutenant Clark said at this time his department is working on the investigation on its own, and is not involving the White Plains Public Safety Department. He said that should investigation lead police to White Plains residents, the Scarsdale Police would have the right to make an arrest of the suspect(s).

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“Billion Dollar Joe” Delfino Joins County Big 5 Mayors at 1st Biz Summit

WPCNR MAIN STREET JOURNAL. By John F. Bailey with E. Hezi of The Yonkers Tribune. UPDATED 11:00 A.M. October 10, 2002: White Plains Mayor Joseph Delfino, the Mayor responsible for attracting over $1 Billion of development to White Plains in the last two years will participate in gathering of eagles and angels Wednesday at the first Westchester Mayors Business Summit.

The conference to be held in Yonkers will bring together five of Westchester’s key Mayors with the finance community of Westchester County to discuss how more development can be stimulated in Westchester’s cities.

“It is our mission,” according to Anthony Fardella, President of Westchester Venture Group, major sponsor of the conference, “to create a forum whereby entities who seek financing and the financing community can meet.”

Dee Del Bello, President of the Westchester County Business Journal, another even sponsor, added, “It is the hope of all the participants that the Westchester Mayors Business Summit becomes an annual event.”

Aims at Developing Westchester’s Cities: Spencer

Mayor John Spencer of Yonkers said, “This is an amazing opportunity for the mayors of this county to come together and work toward the goal we all hold very much in common. That is, bringing more and more community-friendly, professional and intelligent economic development to our cities and involving highly trained, skilled men and women in the process.”

Westchester’s Big Five

The Summit will be hosted by Mayor John Spencer and the City of Yonkers and will be sponsored by Morgan Stanley. Participating in the panel of distinguished executives will be Mayor Delfino, New Rochelle Mayor Timothy Idoni, Mount Vernon Mayor Ernest Davis, and Rye Mayor Steven Otis.

The program is scheduled to begin with an informal “Networking Breakfast” beginning at 7:30 A.M., according to Vincent Bocchimuzzo, a spokesman for the Westchester Venture Group.

Mayors Seeking Investment Meet the Investors

Bocchimuzzo reports that the format of the Mayors Business Summit will consist of panel discussion between Mayor Delfino, Mayor Iodoni, Mayor Spencer, Mayor Otis and Mayor Davis and a second panel of executives from venture capital firms.

Venturer firms appearing on the investor side of the panel are Green Hills Ventures LLC, Morgan Stanley, New York Community Investment Corporation, Enhanced Capital Partners, Signature Bank and Venture Partners. The panels will be moderated by Joseph DePaolo, President and Chief Executive Officer of Signature Bank.

Show and Tell.

At the beginning of the event, Bocchimuzzo said, each Mayor will speak about his city and then the panel of venture capitalist representatives will respond. They will make comments and “engage the mayors,” followed by a question and answer period from the floor.

Westchester’s Money Market.

Bocchimuzzo says the event has over 100 persons scheduled to attend at this point, and his hope is that entrepreneurs with business plans, and an audience of what he describes as “a cross-section of the Westchester business community” will, in turn engage the Mayors and venturists in discussion to mutual benefit.

“The organizers see this,” Bocchimuzzo said, “as a way to bring a new source of finance to the people of the cities, to entrepreneurs with new business initiatives.”

Asked if representatives from Westchester County government would be on the panel, Bocchimuzzo, said “No,” that the plan for this meeting was to provide a forum for just the Mayors and 30 venture capitalist groups. He said, the organizers of the event, Westchester Venture Group, the Westchester County Association, and the Westchester County Business Journal, the organizations which “conceptualized this” hoped to organize a similar event involving the county next year.

The Money is Out There.

Asked if the discussion was going to address the apparent weak economy in the county, Bocchimuzzo told WPCNR that “this was a perception that venture capitalists were not ready to invest, and not the reality, because we are not seeing enough of venture capitalist firms.”
He said the purpose of the Summit was “to give them (venture capitalists) visibility, that their doors are open for business.”

He said this was going to become an annual event, and at the end of the morning, the Mayors would draw out of a hat to see which city would host the Summit next year.

The Summit, slated to begin at 8:30 A.M, Wednesday, October 16 at Ridge Hill Plaza, 1 Ridge Hill Drive, in Yonkers, New York, just off Exit 6A North of the New York State Thruway. You exit onto Stew Leonard Drive, and make a right at the Guard Booth.

For information on how you can register contact 914-699-2020, Extension 118.

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Middle School Harriering Girls Win third straight meet.

WPCNR PRESS BOX. By John F. Bailey. October 9, 2002:

THREE IN THE TOP FIVE: Jill Gordon and Kaylin Gilmartin-Donohue at the finish of Monday afternoon’s cross country event in Larchmont, in which they finished 2nd and 3rd among 35 girls in the 7th and 8th grade cross country meet. The girls took command at the midmark in the 1.1 mile course. It was the third straight White Plains Girls Cross Country win in the Middle School season.
Photo by WPCNR Sports

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City Announces English Courses at Library for Non-English Speaking Citizens.

WPCNR AFTERNOON TRIB & POST. By John F. Bailey. October 9, 2002: Mayor Joseph Delfino announced today a new program in conjunction with Westchester Community College, the Westchester Library System, the White Plains Public Library providing 12-week courses in English for non-English speaking adult residents over 18, who speak little or no English, to be given mornings, afternoons and evenings all year round at the White Plains Public Library.

ESL FOR DAILY LIVING ANNOUNCED: The architects of the new ESL for Daily Living program just launched at the White Plains Public Library at their news conference Wednesday morning: L to R, Walter Anderson, of the National Center for Family Literacy, Isabel Villar of Centro Hispano, Sandra Miranda of the White Plains Public Library, MayorJoseph Delfino, Dr. Maurice Freedman, Director of the Westchester Library System, and Dr. Joseph Hankin, President of Westchester Community College. There is still room in the first series of courses and adults over 18 must register in person at the library Thursday at 3:30 PM.
Photo by WPCNR News

Registration for the current session in the mornings and afternoons is scheduled for Thursday afternoon 3:30 PM at the Library. The cost per student is $40 for books and course materials, with instructors of the course being provided by Westchester Community College.

Mayor’s Initiative.

The program was conceived by Mayor Delfino and suggested to the Library and Westchester Community College that worked together to design the program.

Sandra Miranda, Director of the White Plains Public Library, said that the current course underway has received an “overwhelming response,” and that there is still room for students in the morning and afternoon courses. She said that 85% of the persons currently enrolled are from White Plains.

Limited Room in present course. New course begins in Janurary.

Beginning in January a new course will start up. The instruction will be primarily for Spanish-speaking persons wishing to learn English, but all persons who speak a different language than English who want to learn English, technological English, and English skills for employment and daily living are eligible and will be accepted into the program, space permitting.

Currently the program is designed to handle 100 to 125 students per 12 week course. The present course is filled in the evenings, however there are some slots open in the mornings and afternoons and those will be filled on a first-come first served basis beginning at 3:30 today at the White Plains Public Library. For more information, call the White Plains Public Library at 422-1400, or Westchester Community College.

Program funded by Westchester Community College.

The cost of the program was not available at the news conference, but it is being underwritten by Westchester Community College, and they are reimbursed by grant money from New York State.
Mayor Inspired to Create the Program by his father.

Mayor Joseph Delfino, introducing the course, said “the diversity in our city is important to us, and this program will bring us together.”

The Mayor pondered on the questions residents who speak no English raised in his head: “How do you communicate? How do you relate to your children and with homework? How do you motivate them?”

The Mayor said the new courses are designed to help make them a bigger part of this community. He cited the example of his own father:

“There’s the example of my own Dad. He was talking to me, he said “how tough it was when I came here. I couldn’t do anything.”

The Mayor said his father got a job at New York Hospital in a custodial position where he had to do a certain task each day. He said he told his father “It wasn’t that you couldn’t do anything. It’s just that you couldn’t read, and he said to me, what do you know?”

“In my heart,” the Mayor said, “I know that had he had the ability to learn and speak English he would have done more.”

Walter Anderson – a living example.

Walter Anderson, CEO of Parade Magazine, a White Plains High School student and White Plains resident, and a member of the Board of Advisors of the National Center for Family Literacy spoke next in support of the program.
Mr. Anderson said that he grew up in Mount Vernon, the son of an alcoholic father who beat him when he caught him reading. On the other hand his mother encourgaged him to read. He said there was an “island” in the midst of the turbulence and anger and violence, and it was the Mount Vernon Library, which had “wonderful librarians.”

“I would do anything I could, and I was able to imagine myself out of a slum (through reading),” he said.

He praised a teacher of his, a Ms. Williams, who encouraged him: “Every child needs somebody to be crazy about them.”

It was her encouragement guiding him to parocial school, Windward School in White Plains, and White Plains High School, and eventually the Marine Corps and then a degree from Westchester Community College which lead to his success today.

“I read myself out of poverity long before I worked myself out of poverity,” Anderson said. “Destiny is not something you wait for. Destiny is a choice.”

“We are going to make a Difference.

Mayor Delfino in closing the official side of the news conference, and thanking the organizations who created the program, looked Heavenward and said, emotionally, “Dad, I found a way. I tried. I found some people to help. We are going to make a difference.”

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