New Rochelle’s ambitious downtown development plan will bring thousands of new residents to our city, all of whom are potential customers for current businesses and magnets for future businesses. In fact, improving the local business climate is one the chief goals of our downtown plan, and it’s the idea behind the City’s new Discount Card, which all new downtown residents will receive as they move in. The Card offers an immediate introduction to the outstanding businesses and restaurants in our community. It’s a great way to capture the buying power of new population to support local entrepreneurs, enhance our tax base, and ensure all of us benefit from downtown growth. There’s more in this press release.
A hat tip to long-time New Rochelle resident Dr. Jason Silverman for suggesting this concept and to the City’s Business Ambassador, Lisa Davis, for rolling out the program.
Thank you to State Senators Andrea Stewart-Cousins and Shelley Mayer, County Executive George Latimer, and Dr. DaMia Harris-Madden, the Executive Director of the County Youth Bureau, for delivering a $225,000 grant to Westchester’s cities to bolster youth services. We all have a stake in helping young people make good choices and achieve physical, social, and emotional health.
This was the kind of weekend that made me grateful to live in New Rochelle, with terrific events that brought me to every corner of town and that showcase our city’s diversity:
• A backpack giveaway at the Mascaro Boys and Girls Club in the West End. Hundreds of kids and their families, dozens of volunteers, and even a visit from the New Rochelle High School varsity soccer team, whose members were treated like celebrities by the younger children. Feeney Park was filled with life.
• The New Rochelle downtown Farmers Market on Library Green, the entire park lined with festive stalls doing a brisk business in tasty treats. Pickles and soppressata for me.
• The annual Onam celebration at Albert Leonard Middle School, sponsored by the Westchester Malayalee Association. Onam is a harvest festival with roots in the Indian State of Kerala, from which many New Rochelle residents trace their ancestry. It’s an honor to participate each year in the ceremonial procession and observance.
• The New Rochelle Street Fair by City Hall, a rousing success that brought out thousands from just about every neighborhood of the city to enjoy fun, games, drink, and an international assortment of foods. I heard lots of positive feedback on the new location.
I am glad to live in a community that gives each of us a chance to experience the richness of the world’s traditions close to home. New Rochelle is a great city.
Catie, the kids and I had some wonderful time together as a family during the holidays, and we hope that you and yours also enjoyed the season.
After November’s election, I took a little break from sending mass emails and posting to social media. Now with a new year upon us, I’d like to start sharing information again about civic and political issues here in New Rochelle and elsewhere. (But don’t worry — I won’t send notes as frequently as we did during the campaign.)
Catie and I want to express our thanks for your support and encouragement during the course of the campaign. It was a privilege to work with so many people whom we admire, and we could not be more grateful.
If our 2013 photo is a little more formal than usual, that’s because it was taken at a fundraiser, which ended up being just about our only time together as a family! We’re hoping to see each other a bit more often in 2014, and hope that for you and yours the coming year will be filled with health and happiness.
With sincere appreciation and every good wish for the season,