Officers and Directors for 2017.
Anthony Longo, Graciela Ramirez, Timothy Wong
On October 30, 2016 the membership voted in our new slate of Officers and Directors for Roosevelt Island Garden Club. "ARTICLE IV – OFFICERS AND DIRECTORS A. The elected Executive Board shall be comprised of President,Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer and three Directors." As per these same Revised October 2013 Bylaws, voting is by ballot and “If there is but one candidate for any office, she/he must receive a majority of votes cast.” Special thanks to Paul Lenner as Chair of the Election Committee and to the all the members who volunteer to carefully count the ballots.
We extend a warm welcome to the following
Officers and Directors for 2017.
Anthony Longo, Graciela Ramirez, Timothy Wong
Another amazing work day with high school students at the Roosevelt Island Garden Club on Saturday, November 5, 2016. 9th and 10th grade students as well as one college age neighbor joined current garden members to finish off our Accessible Pathways Project for this 2016 season. Three of our newest volunteers are Roosevelt Island residents.
This year we received a grant from CCNYC and are continuing to re-work all pathways in the garden in order to try to make the space completely accessible for manual wheelchairs and all others who benefit from walking support.
This is 3-4 year project involves hard work of removing old gravel, laying landscape cloth, and transporting and laying in new trail mix gravel. UNIS students who have now graduated were instrumental in helping with the very beginning year of this project and we are so happy to see new interest with a new group.
We have now renovated over 500 feet of pathways of about 4 feet in width equaling more than 2000 square feet. We have finished approximately two thirds of the total garden path area.
Pre-Labor Day Picnic pictures below show the beautiful results of a full season of neighborly collaboration and helping to create gardening experiences and spaces for all.
Anthony Longo, Jennifer Schuppert, Marcos Miller, Julia Ferguson, Christina Delfico and more gardeners helped regularly alongside RISA members with Barbara Parker taking the lead and new Carter Burden Center director Lisa Fernandez joining in.
The patio became a lush and relaxing haven with RIGC donated seeds, containers, plants, and compost and RISA donated plantings and "pot luck" additions from seniors. Two picnics pre-Memorial Day and pre-Labor Day bookended a really wonderful pilot project.
Couldn't make it to the Planning & Design Charrette Workshop
for Southpoint Open Space?
YOU CAN STILL PARTICIPATE!
Click here to visit the VIRTUAL Planning & Design Charrette Workshop!
From Erica Spencer-El at RIOC:
Thank you to all who attended the Planning and Design Workshop for Southpoint Open Space on Saturday, July 23rd! We all worked together to brainstorm ideas and came up with some exciting potential concepts to progress the development of this Community Plan.
If you couldn't attend in person or want to view the ideas we heard on Saturday, July 23rd, click here to visit the VIRTUAL Planning and Design Charrette Workshop. We've posted all the meeting material so you can review the information we shared, see what others think, and submit your own ideas.
We'll keep the meeting open to receive input through Wednesday, August 31st. But remember, time flies (especially in the summer) so don't wait -PARTICIPATE TODAY!
Visit the project website to learn more about how you can get involved:
Have a comment or suggestion? Email SouthpointOpenSpace@gmail.com
RIOC is looking forward to hearing from you!
Marc Atkins was a young adult, turning 18 on Roosevelt Island in 1992. Persons with disabilities were regularly part of his life. His pediatrician, Dr. Sudzin was learning to live after a stroke and another friend, Sam Brown, who was wheelchair bound, had often taken him fishing when he was younger. Marc noticed that hospitals like Goldwater were using gardening for rehabilitation.
As he approached his Eagle Scout project, Marc was working with Scoutmasters like John Dougherty and Geoff Kerr who are still garden members today. He was also learning blueprints and drafting in classes at Brooklyn Tech High School. And the Roosevelt Island Garden Club had just moved to a new location at Octagon Park.
After looking at the new space that was just flat earth lined by small trees, Marc came up with an idea to build raised planters. So he made a proposal to the RIGC Board for the creation of garden spaces for persons with disabilities, now known as H plots from the former term « handicapped. »
When Marc went to the Rusk Institute to do research, he was asked to spend an afternoon in a wheelchair to see first hand what it is like to have some movement restrictions. He realized that he would need varied heights for the beds for some tall folks and some shorter folks. He wanted to create spaces that could be approached like a desk and originally imagined two gardeners sharing each H plot bed.
The design was drawn up and approved. The space would need to be bulldozed and then leveled in order to create steps in increments and different heights. Construction took a month or more and Mark’s mom, Marilyn Atkins recalls a day or two when she had to call his school to excuse him as he waited for the contractor with the bulldozer and the contractor for the cement and drainage pipes. Marc remembers using cinder blocks to build the beds and teaching younger scouts to spread the cement mix over them.
« Then Dr. Sudzin was one of the first gardeners to take an H plot. » Marc recalled with satisfaction. Diversity of many sorts is one of the best parts of Roosevelt Island. Remembering this story reminds one of all the individual and group volunteer hours that have been and still are spent creating and maintaining our beautiful garden spaces.
Marc Atkins, LMT is still making people’s lives better today as he does massage therapy and energy work and can be contacted at email@example.com.
Our by-laws were re-written and approved in 2013. We have a website! We have re-instated composting. We are updating our pathways. We have worked on many of the wooden garden borders between and around the gardens.
And now in 2016 we have a clean and beautiful shed for our tools and lockers!
Neal Weissman has headed up this multi stage project and he writes:
Regarding the Shed. It was a multi-stage project.
Gardeners involved along with Neal this year were Jose, Philippe, Ron S, Kaz, and Florence Masoud's son. Last year, Karen labeled all the tool bins and we had a team who helped us get a refrigerator replacement. This year we have also had Arline who created our little library shelf! Thanks to all.
And don't forget to clean those tools before you put them back in our lovely shed space.
Thanks to so much support and so many hard hours of work from RIGC gardeners last year, we have a grant! We applied for a Citizens Committee Neighborhood Grant to help us along on our multi-year Accessible Garden Pathways Project. RIGC has just received a 2016 Neighborhood Grant for $2700. This grant will allow us to move ahead and make at least two years worth of progress in one year. Thanks to all who brought snacks, lifted wheelbarrows, shoveled gravel, weeded new paths, raked, watered, and cheered the workers along! We wrote about all your participation in so many ways and they listened. We also appreciate RIOC's cooperation and help as we have had to work with gravel in and gravel out to get this project under way.
We are working to make all of our pathways accessible for EVERYONE. Please come help or bring snacks. We will now be working again on Sunday, June 12th in a section B pathway. Check the website calendar for updates. If you see any of our teen helpers, be sure to thank them again for their willing heavy lifting!
When you are out at the gardens, look for our new grant sign from CCNYC alongside our old sign from 1988!
Saturday June 4th we laid one of the longest paths in the garden and then tried to tackle the prep of another path in the heat: Board Members, Associates, and Teen helpers at the end of a four hour work session.
Our newest path and one of our longest paths...thanks to the grant.
Volunteers of all ages.
Every Thursday from 12:30 - 2:00 p.m. with RISA on the Senior Center Terrace
Archives by date