Thursday, April 30, 2009

Latino bilingual website for teachers to debut

Albany, NY---Officials of the New York State Archives Partnership Trust and Centro de Estudios Puertorriqueños/Center for Puerto Rican Studies (Centro) at Hunter College (in Manhattan) will debut a first-of- its-kind bilingual website designed to showcase Hispanic contributions to New York State history Tuesday, May 5 at 11 a.m. at Hunter College’s Centro.

Known as La Escuela Electrónica (the Electronic Schoolhouse), the new web resource will be available in English and Spanish.

La Escuela Electrónica examines the Latino experience in New York through photographs, letters, broadsides, flyers, and more dating from 1861 to the present. Bilingual introductory videos explain how teachers can use such primary sources in
their classrooms and the kinds of institutions that care for these one-of-a-kind materials.

Within the website, documents are organized by topics selected to correlate to New York’s learning standards: immigration, labor unions, biography, civil rights, culture, urbanization, etc. Many items include historical background information, focus questions, the appropriate learning standards and key ideas, a historical challenge, interdisciplinary activities, and a list of additional resources. Some documents include multiple pages; these carry a link to a printable

An additional feature for teachers, the "Build Your Own Worksheet" option, allows users to print a worksheet for each image.

The Electronic Schoolhouse combines historical records and technology to promote the development of critical thinking skills (analyzing and interpreting information), reading and writing skills, understanding historical content and context, and may be used for a range of purposes for foreign language, English as a second language and bilingual education proficiency.

The Electronic Schoolhouse was conceived by the New York State Archives, a part of the State Education Department, and its support arm, the Archives Partnership Trust. It was developed through the collaborative efforts of nine partner institutions, including the New York State Archives, the Centro de Estudios Puertorriqueños, the New York City Department of
Records and Information Services, Cornell University, Hofstra University (Long Island), Hostos Community College (the Bronx), the Dominican Studies Institute at City College (CUNY), the Onondaga Historical Association (Syracuse), and the Rochester Museum and Science Center/Latino Alliance partnership. This project was made possible by the New York State Archives Partnership Trust, through a grant by Time Warner.

source: press release from the NYS Education Department

Dramatizing Eugenio Maria de Hostos: 'El Juicio'

Things to do in the Bx

Dramatization of a Stage Reading...Eugenio Mario de Hostos
"El Juicio"
noon to 2 p.m. TODAY
Hostos Community College
500 Grand Concourse Avenue

Stage Reading of Eugenio Maria de Hostos at Hostos Community College

This performance is in Spanish.

A principios del Siglo XIX es juzgado Eugenio María de Hostos y Bonilla. ¿Cuál fue el veredicto final? Usted lo sabrá cuando asista este Jueves a las 12:30 p.m. a la Corte Especial preparada en la Sala 151 del Edificio C en el Colegio Comunitario de Hostos.

Participan: Yahaziel Acevedo, Dewin Andujar, Patricia Bonilla, Hugo Cáceres, Ricardo J. Salazar, Ediberto Saldaña, Maitreyi Villamán Matos.

Dirección de Miguel J. Concepción Blanco.

Free. Space is limited.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Behind The Roots: Yerbabuena

PRSUN Radio chats with Tato Torres of YERBABUENA at 9 p.m. tonight at

Here's a video by Barrio Media featuring interviews and the music of YERBABUENA, a group dedicated to the musical traditions of Puerto Rico and the Caribbean. This group was born in the South Bronx.

source: Barrio Media at You Tube

See related April 27 entry in this blog.

UPDATE: To listen to Tato Torres' interview with PRSUN Radio:

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Martin Espada to lead Acentos Writers Workshop

Community calendar

Acentos Writers Workshop welcomes Martin Espada to Eugenio María de Hostos Community College
Savoy Building, 120 East 149th Street, corner of Walton Ave, Multipurpose Room, Second Floor
7 p.m. Friday, May 8

Martin Espada is known as "the Latino poet of his generation" and "the Pablo Neruda of North American author." Born in Brooklyn, he has published 16 books as a poet, editor, essayist and translator, including two collections of poems last year: Crucifixion in the Plaza de Armas (Smokestack, 2008), released in England, and La Tumba de Buenaventura Roig (Terranova, 2008), a bilingual edition published in Puerto Rico. The Republic of Poetry, a collection of poems published by Norton in 2006, received the Paterson Award for Sustained Literary Achievement and was a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize. He has received numerous awards and fellowships. He has also published a collection of essays, edited two anthologies and released an audiobook of poetry. His work has been translated into 10 languages. A former tenant lawyer, Espada is now a professor in the Department of English at the University of Massachusetts-Amherst, where he teaches creative writing and the work of Pablo Neruda.

Espada will facilitate the two hour poetry workshop.

You must register to attend. E-mail

source: Acentos

NYCHA to impose only small dogs allowed rule


If you live in New York City Public Housing or know someone who does, please read and pass along this important (message) regarding upcoming changes to the housing administration's pet policy.

WHO: Residents of New York City Public Housing governed by the New York City Housing Authority (NYCHA) and their dogs.

WHAT: NYCHA has decided to allow only small dogs in public housing. The maximum allowable weight of pet dogs is being lowered from 40 to 25 pounds.

NYCHA also plans to ban certain breeds outright--NYCHA tenants will not be allowed to own or register purebred or mixed-breed Rottweilers, pit bulls or Doberman pinschers.

WHEN: The new policy is scheduled to go into effect this Friday, May 1, 2009.

EXEMPTIONS: Service animals are exempt from weight and breed restrictions.

FOR CURRENT DOG OWNERS: Dogs already living in NYCHA buildings who are 40 pounds or under can be grandfathered in under the existing pet policy--regardless of breed--as long as residents submit a dog registration form to their NYCHA housing office by this Thursday, April 30. Residents who submit this form will have an additional 90 days to license their dogs with the City (which may be done online) and submit the required veterinary certificate indicating that their dogs are licensed, spayed/neutered and vaccinated against rabies.

NYCHA residents who submit a dog registration form by Thursday will have an additional 90 days to license their dogs with the City (which may be done online) and submit the required veterinary certificate.

Visit for more information and to locate the forms needed to register pets with NYCHA.

The ASPCA is opposed to the revised NYCHA pet policy, and we are working to prevent it from going into effect. In the meantime, it is important that dogs who have already found good homes do not lose them.

Thank you for your support.

source: ASPCA letter

Editor's Note: Bronx Latino is a supporter of the work of the ASPCA.

Monday, April 27, 2009

PRSUN Radio chats with Tato Torres of YERBABUENA

Tato Torres chats with PRSUN Radio at 9 p.m. Wednesday at

He is spending his birthday with us. Happy birthday Tato!

Torres, who used to live in the Bronx and now lives in Puerto Rico, will be chatting with PRSUN Radio on boricua roots music, YERBABUENA, his newest project ChivoLoco and more.

To read Tato's bio, check out my blog at

(photo of Tato Torres performing at a Bronx festival by Clarisel Gonzalez)

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Featured Bronx Film: 'At Home in Utopia'

'AT HOME IN UTOPIA,' a chronicle of a radical cooperative housing experiment in the Bx to air Tuesday on Independent Lens

(San Francisco, CA) -- In the 1920’s, believing they could create a radical new American dream committed to equality, justice and beauty, a group of Jewish garment workers left behind the tenements to build cooperative apartment complexes in the green, spacious borough of the Bronx. Then the Great Depression challenged everything. A film by Michal Goldman with Ellen Brodsky, narrated by Linda Lavin, AT HOME IN UTOPIA will air nationally on the Emmy Award winning PBS series Independent Lens on Tuesday, April 28 at 10 p.m. (check local listings.)
AT HOME IN UTOPIA focuses on the United Workers Cooperative Colony – aka “the Coops” – the most grass-roots and member-driven of the labor housing cooperatives, where many of the residents were Communists or sympathetic to the communist movement. They became part of a mass movement that was strong enough to get twenty-four states to enact emergency legislation against mortgage foreclosures. In a time of economic ruin, they saw an opportunity to change America into a place they would want to call home.
In the 1930s they opted to bring their passion for racial justice home, by racially integrating their own cooperative house, with unexpected consequences. An epic tale of the struggle for equity and justice across two generations, the film tracks the rise and fall of the Coops from the 1920s into the 1950s, illuminating the passions that bound them together and those that tore them apart. Along the way, AT HOME IN UTOPIA bears witness to lives lived with courage across the barriers of race and ethnicity, foreshadowing the struggles and triumphs of the 1960s and today. As we once again face times of financial uncertainty and upheaval, AT HOME IN UTOPIA is a thought-provoking look at one group’s struggle to create an equitable community.

To learn more about the film, visit the AT HOME IN UTOPIA interactive companion website (, which features detailed information on the film, including an interview with the filmmakers and links and resources pertaining to the film’s subject matter. The site also features a Talkback section for viewers to share their ideas and opinions, preview clips of the film, and more.

source: press release/photo of the first Coop residents courtesy of AT HOME IN UTOPIA

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

The Call/La Llamada at Pregones

Things to do in the Bx

The Phone Call/La Llamada

A Call to Knowledge and Action!
8 p.m., Friday, April 24
Pregones Theater, 571-575 Walton Avenue


Written and directed by
Rosalba Rolón and Pregones Theater
based on first-hand accounts by real-life survivors.

An interactive forum theater play where you determine the outcome!

Learn about the options you have to overcome and help others triumph over domestic violence. Determine the best course of action under different circumstances in dialogue with peers and legal experts. Take action on behalf of safety and domestic justice.

Starring Varín Ayala, J.W. Cortés, Sol Crespo and Yaritza Pizarro.
Facilitators generously provided by Violence Intervention Program (VIP)
The play is performed in both English & Spanish.

For more information, go to

For a Better Bronx to honor one its own

Tribute to activist Vicente "Panama" Alba for his tireless work of four decades

For a Better Bronx, a community-based organization in the South Bronx dedicated to achieving environmental, social and food justice, will honor its board president this Friday. Among other things, Panama has been a voice in the struggle for independence for Puerto Rico, freedom of political prisoners, justice for workers and immigrants as well as the quality of life of the Bronx.

(Click on the image for larger text.)

'Viva La Raza!' Latino hip hop showcase

Community calendar

This special First Fridays! program, "Viva La Raza!" is a hip hop showcase featuring local Latino MCs. Hosted by RephStar and Patty Dukes, and featuring Division X, De la Ceiba, Mikki Flow, Eli Efi, and special guests.

6-10 p.m., Friday, May 1
The Bronx Museum of the Arts
North Building – 2nd Floor
1040 Grand Concourse @ 165th Street

First Fridays! are free and open to the public. For more information, please visit

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

The Grand Concourse celebrates its centennial

Featured story

The Grand Concourse may not be as iconic to the rest of the world as Broadway, Fifth Avenue or Park Avenue, but it is closely woven into the fabric of New York City. It is especially meaningful to the generations of immigrants who have called it home.

To read the full report, go to

Monday, April 20, 2009

Special election for our new BP is tomorrow


The special election for the new Bronx Borough President is tomorrow. Veteran Democratic assemblyman, Rubén Díaz Jr., faces only token opposition in the race to succeed Adolfo Carrión Jr. who left his post to work for the Obama administration.
Diaz has no Democratic challenger. His lone opponent is Anthony J. Ribustello, a Republican district leader who is best known as the actor who played Tony Soprano’s beefy driver on “The Sopranos.”
It is pretty clear that Diaz will be our next BP.
I'm disappointed that this is not really an election. There is no real competition. No real discussion of the issues. Lo que sea. Politics as usual in the Bronx.
I don't plan to go vote because I believe there should be competition in elections.
But to find out where to vote, go to the Board of Elections site.

For more, check out this related story,

Young Artist Exhibition at City Island


Calling All Young Artists Ages 18 and younger for Focal Point's 19th YOUNG ARTIST EXHIBITION

321 City Island Ave.

Focal Point Gallery will host its 19th Young Artist Exhibition, with an opening in May 2nd 2009. Any young artist 18 or younger can make one piece of art and have it exhibited at Focal Point Gallery. The artwork can be drawings, paintings, sculpture, or photography. Just bring in the work and Focal Point will mat, frame and hang the art in an exhibition.
Deadline has been extended to April 26. For further information, call 718 885-1403. All art can be dropped off before or on the 26th of April. Call before going to the gallery.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Bronx PR Parade is May 17

Community calendar

Bronx Puerto Rican Parade Inc.

1-4 p.m., Sunday, May 17
Grand Concourse from 176th street to 167th street

Theme: "The Islands of the Caribbean"
Dedicated to the Bronx American Legion Post
And the Press

Applications are being accepted for every country
and every island that wants to be a part of the parade.
For more information,

(Photo by Clarisel Gonzalez)

Friday, April 17, 2009


See related story below.

source: OrfanatoMusic on YouTube

Marcy Place is in the running for a Billboard’s Latin Music award

The Bronx’s own Marcy Place, an urban bachata group discovered by reggaeton star Don Omar, is competing for tropical airplay song of the year for a duo or group in the Billboard’s Latin Music Awards next week.
Marcy Place, the latest in a new crop of urban bachata artists, is made up of Juan Carlos Cabrera who is known as JC and brothers Billy Pabón and Joey Pabón. Marcy Place is nominated for its hit “Todo Lo Que Soy” featuring Don Omar, and the bacheteros are definitely planning to attend the ceremony in Coral Gables, Florida.
“I’m excited; I can't believe we are actually nominated,” says JC of the Bronx.
Marcy Place faces tough competition. They are running against “El Aquel Lugar” (Adolescent’s Orchestra), “El Perdedor” (Aventura) and “Ahora Es” (Wisin y Yandel).
JC says he is amazed to see his group running in the same category as the likes of bachata kings Aventura and reggaeton stars Wisin y Yandel.
JC says it's “weird to be fans of these people” and to be running in the same category as them.
JC, who was born in the Dominican Republic and moved to New York when he was a boy, says he's looking forward to the big night. So far, he says, the nomination is one of the group’s biggest accomplishments.
Billboard’s Latin Music award ceremony will be on Thursday, April 23, and the show will be aired on Telemundo. The Billboard’s honor the most popular albums, songs and performers in Latin music as determined by actual sales and radio airplay data that inform Billboard’s weekly charts during a one-year period from the issue dated Feb. 9, 2008 to Jan. 31, 2009.
JC describes Marcy Place as an urban bachata group with influences from other genres such as R&B, pop, merengue and hip hop.
“Bachata is like R&B but in Spanish,” he says. “We sing about heartbreak and many of the same subjects.”
Before joining Marcy Place, JC worked as a sound engineer in Lenny Santos' (the guitarist and musical producer/arranger of Grupo Aventura) studio at a street named Marcy Place in the Bronx. Billy and Joey are of Puerto Rican heritage and they live in Brooklyn. Before joining Marcy Place, they worked as supervisors in a factory and restaurant respectively.
Don Omar discovered the talented guys when he went to record songs at the studio where JC worked. JC collaborated in the arrangement and chorus in Don Omar’s hit “Canción de Amor,” a bachata.
Don Omar was impressed and signed them to his label Orfanato Music Group.
JC recalled that the three were actually not a group. JC and the Pabon brothers were pursuing their own bachata projects, but it was Don Omar’s idea that they should unite as one group and gave them the name Marcy Place.
JC who is a Don Omar fan says he is grateful for his hands on approach.
Don Omar, he says, has been supportive of the group since the beginning. JC who writes songs for Marcy Place says he has also learned about the way Don Omar writes. Don Omar gives them feedback on choosing songs.
Late last year, Marcy Place released its first album, B From Marcy Place, a 12-track featuring 10 original songs as well as collaborations by Don Omar, Wisin y Yandel, Jayko and Divino.
From the streets of the Bronx to the world, Marcy Place’s goal is to share the contagious rhythm of urban bachata.
JC describes Marcy Place as “new, refreshing, innovative and ready.”
He says the group is currently promoting its CD and touring the United States and Puerto Rico.
The group’s short-term goals are to continuing to promote their music in the United States and abroad.
“Our long-term goal is to continue to have success in this business,” he says.
JC gives this advice to a young person interested in music, “Follow your dreams and give more than 100 percent.”
To find out more about Marcy Place, go to their MySpace page at – Clarisel Gonzalez

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Bronx BP office commits $2.8 million in funding for Bronx Children's Museum

The Office of the Bronx Borough President has announced $2.8 Million in funding towards building a Bronx Children’s Museum. While the location of the Bronx Children’s Museum is still under discussion, one location currently under consideration is the Parks Department Building J site on Exterior & East 153rd Streets. The Bronx is New York City’s youngest borough, with thirty percent of its 1.4 million residents under the age of eighteen. Yet the Bronx is the only New York City borough without a children’s museum. In 2005, Borough President Adolfo Carrion made a commitment to build a Children’s Museum in the Bronx. Since then, the Board of Directors has been established, the pilot program has been executed throughout the Borough, and 501c3 status has been gained. The Borough President proposed an interactive museum that would educate youngsters about the history and diversity of The Bronx, while also engaging and sparking their imaginations and curiosity. The Bronx Children’s Museum will foster a love of learning and help children to develop language and literacy skills.

Hope Harley, Bronx Children's Museum Board President stated, “I want to thank former Borough President Adolfo Carrion for his vision and commitment to the creation of the museum and Acting Borough President Earl Brown for his continued support and involvement. We look forward to working with the next administration to make this project a reality for the children and parents of the Bronx. This much needed capital funding will help the Bronx Children's Museum address the educational, social and cognitive development needs of our borough's children.

Bill Aguado, Executive Director of the Bronx Council on the Arts and a Bronx Children’s Museum board member stated, "Children's museums are uniquely qualified to attend to young children’s needs by providing interactive learning experiences that promote literacy, the arts, media and communications science and early childhood education. More than anything else they help children acquire important life skills. The museum will target families and children at an age when the most critical and long term effects can be achieved. The children who will visit the Bronx Children's Museum are the future of our borough and the future of New York City."

Acting Borough President Earl Brown said “The Bronx Children’s Museum will be an extraordinary addition to the borough and this allocation of $2.8 million will bring the museum one step closer to finding a permanent home. This is a great investment in the Bronx and in children throughout the city, who will one day benefit from and enjoy a long overdue children’s museum in the Bronx.”

The Borough President’s office has also secured the pro bono services of BKSK Architects to develop a conceptual design for the Bronx Children’s Museum. BKSK served as architect for the Queens Botanical Garden and also designed the Children’s Museum of Manhattan, among many other notable projects.

Those who are interested in learning more about this exciting project can become a part of the museum's e-mail list at

source: Bronx BP office press release

Pinchos y Rolos and a little Cuban music in the Bx

Things to do in the Bx

The New York premiere of Tané Martinez’s "Tengo," a documentary about Cuban singer Xiomara Laugart and Freddy Vargas’ "Pinchos y Rolos," a musical about a beautician in Washington Heights, will be shown at The Bronx Museum of Arts at 6 p.m. April 17. Festivities in The Bronx’s will include a (First Friday’s) Cuban Party with live entertainment.

First Fridays! - "A Gozar!"

Preview of Havana Film Festival New York

6-10 p.m.

Bronx Museum - North Building - 2nd Floor

Join the Bronx Museum for a sampling of the best films in this year’s Havana Film Festival New York. And stay for the after-party. Featuring a screening of the films “Pinchos y Rolos” and “Tengo Lo Que Tenía Que Tener.”
Special live performances by the Cuban band Habana Tres and DJ Asho.

Admission is free and open to the public.

The Bronx festivities are part of the Havana Film Festival New York.
This is one of many events planned for the Havana Film Festival, which celebrates its 10th anniversary from April 16-23 in various locations throughout New York City. This year's selection appeals to different age groups, fostering an appreciation of Latin American culture.
For more information on the Havana Film Festival, go to

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

B as in Beauty

Trailer for "B as in Beauty," the new novel by Alberto Ferreras. Produced by CRAFTV and Latino Media Works.

Bronx Latino is participating in a book giveaway.

The first five Bronx Latino readers who send me an e-mail requesting the "B as in Beauty" book at bronxlatinoblog (at) will be entered for the giveaway.

What you need to do: Please send your name and complete mailing address and Hachette Books will mail you a copy.

First-come, first-served.

About the author:

Alberto Ferreras is a New York City based writer, filmmaker and performance artist.

About the book:

Everyone in the world, it seems, is either prettier or thinner (or both) than Beauty Marie Zavala. And the only thing "B" resents more than her name is the way others judge her for the extra 40 pounds she can't lose. At least she has her career. Or did, until she overhears her boss criticizing her weight and devising a scheme to keep her from being promoted. Enter B's new tax accountant, a modern-day matchmaker determined to boost B's flagging self-esteem by introducing her to rich, successful men who will accept her for who she is. As B's confidence blossoms, so do her fantasies of revenge. But will B find true happiness or true disaster when she unwittingly falls for the one guy she shouldn't?

More info at or

PRSUN continues its online drive for ASPCA

Both my Puerto Rico Sun and Bronx Latino blogs have gone orange in support of the ASPCA's Go Orange for Animals month or Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Month. Both the Puerto Rico Sun and Bronx Latino blogs are projects of Puerto Rico Sun Communications, a social entrepreneurship.

This is a friendly reminder to contribute to the PRSUN for the ASPCA drive at PRSUN's goal is to raise $500 for the ASPCA's general fund. Donations have been slow, but PRSUN hopes to reach its goal with your generous contribution for a good cause.

Thanks so much for your support - and please don't forget to forward this page to any friends you think might be interested.

Donate at

Here's the link:

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Bronx Green Drinks

Community calendar

Bronx Green Drinks
This Thursday April 16th from 6-9 p.m.

Every third Thursday the Bronx's green movers and shakers get together to hang out. No meetings. No agendas. Just a relaxed vibe.

This month they have free wine and cheese thanks to the Bronx Council on the Arts.

Longwood Art Gallery@ Hostos Community College
450 Grand Concourse at 149th St, Building C-190


Friday, April 10, 2009

Holy Thursday @ St. Jerome's Church

in the South Bronx

For more of my Holy Week in the Bronx photos, go to Click on the Holy Week '09 photo set.

Earlier today, I shot photos at the outdoor Good Friday processions at St. Pius V and St. Thomas Aquinas churches. I will post those photos to my flickr site soon.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Meet 'Confessions of a Rogue Teacher' at Bay Plaza

New novel highlights issues in inner-city schools

There have been many movies and T.V. shows that attempt to highlight, through drama or comedy, the issues that exist in America’s inner-city schools. But what is it like, really? "Confessions of a Rogue Teacher" (published by iUniverse) by novelist and retired teacher George Colon, employs plot as a vehicle to communicate the realities of life for an inner-city teacher.

"Confessions of a Rogue Teacher" opens with English teacher Manny Quesada hurrying back to his classroom from the restroom. He has just had what the reader finds out in Chapter 2, an altercation with one of his students, Wilson Contreras. In the course of this altercation, things turned physical and Manny hit Wilson in self defense. This fateful event will drive the entire plot of Confessions of a Rogue Teacher, not only for Manny but for the people around him as well.

As a result of Manny’s altercation, there is an inquiry. Manny is removed from the classroom pending a full review. This is a great blow to a man who had dedicated his life to teaching and at one time held to the ideal that he could help his fellow Puerto Ricans rise up from poverty through education. Now, after twenty years of teaching, Manny is felled by an altercation resulting in a momentary act of anger and impulse. Manny is instructed to report to the superintendent’s office. Unsure of where he stands or if he will even be allowed to return to the classroom, Manny is faced with a new reality: what comes next?

“I’ve been here three days now and don’t know why,” I complained. “I have union rights.” I’d called Peter Goldstein, who told me Joseph Arimet, roving troubleshooter, would contact me, but he hadn’t yet.
“You’ve been placed in this office,” he twiddled his moustache. “I didn’t send for you.” While he let these words sink in, his eyes bore down on me with the sneer of command. “Don’t know what you’ve done - don’t care.”
“I do.”
His eyes softened, though not his tone “When Minerva returns, she’ll talk to you. For now, man a desk, file papers, and handle the phone. Take messages and complaints. Give information. No opinions. Tell callers they’ll be contacted. Mario will break you in. He’s got a problem, too.”

George Colon is a native of Puerto Rico and grew up in the South Bronx. After earning a bachelor’s degree in English and a master’s on Secondary Education, Colon returned to the South Bronx. He was a teacher there for 30 years. Upon retiring, he began writing. This is his first published novel. Colon has a wife and daughter and still resides in the Bronx.

source: press release

Join George Colon at the Meet the Writers at Small Press Night
7 p.m. April 17
Barnes & Noble Booksellers
Bay Plaza
290 Baychester Ave., Coop City
For more information:
(718) 862-3945

Editor's Note: "Confessions of a Rogue Teacher is also available at the PRSUN aStore:

(photo of George Colon at a book event at Cemi Underground in East Harlem by Ismael Nunez)

Hispanics and the Criminal Justice System

Low Confidence, High Exposure

At a time when Latinos are interacting more than ever with police, courts and prisons, their confidence in the U.S. criminal justice system is closer to the low levels expressed by blacks than to the high levels expressed by whites, according to a pair of nationwide surveys by the Pew Research Center.

Six-in-ten (61%) Hispanics say they have a great deal or a fair amount of confidence that the police in their local communities will do a good job enforcing the law, compared with 78% of whites and 55% of blacks. Just under half (46%) of Hispanics say they have confidence that police officers will not use excessive force on suspects, compared with 73% of whites and 38% of blacks. Similarly, just under half of Hispanics say they are confident that police officers will treat Hispanics fairly (46%) and that courts will treat Hispanics fairly (49%). In comparison, 74% of whites and 37% of blacks say they have confidence that the police will treat blacks and whites equally.

The report also finds that more than half (56%) of Latinos say they or an immediate family member had contact with the criminal justice system in the previous five years. Contact includes reporting a crime to the police, serving on a jury, serving as a sworn witness in court, attending court on a criminal matter, being questioned by the police, being arrested, being on probation or parole, or serving time in jail or prison.

The report, "Hispanics and the Criminal Justice System: Low Confidence, High Exposure," authored by Mark Hugo Lopez, Associate Director, Pew Hispanic Center and Gretchen Livingston, Senior Researcher, Pew Hispanic Center, is available at the Pew Hispanic Center's website,

The Pew Hispanic Center, a project of the Pew Research Center, is a nonpartisan, non-advocacy research organization based in Washington, D.C. and is funded by The Pew Charitable Trusts.

source: Pew Hispanic Center press release

Monday, April 6, 2009

PRSUN Radio interviews la Mamarazzi

Elena Marrero is a Bronx-based photojournalist who regularly documents the boricua/Latino community life in New York City. She is known as "Mamarazzi" of the community, documenting the people and the events that many of the mainstream media outlets overlook.

After retiring from the NYC Board of Education in 2005, she has focused on her photography and is passionate about what she does. She says it's a passion she inherited from her mother Helen.

For Marrero's bio, visit my blog at

The show is 9 p.m. Wednesday, April 8,


(photo by Clarisel Gonzalez)

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Palm Sunday in the Bronx

I took this photo at the St. Roch's Church Palm Sunday celebration. I plan to document different Holy Week events this week.

For more photos of the Palm Sunday celebration, go to Click on the Holy Week '09 photo set.

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Bronx connections

Photo op

Bronx ties -- I met the guys from the urban bachata group Marcy Place and actress April Hernandez who played Eva in the movie "Freedom Writers" at an event in Queens earlier this week.

For more photos, visit my photo page at Click on the Queens photo set.

(photo by Clarisel Gonzalez)

Friday, April 3, 2009

Majority of Bronx Latino readers prefer salsa

Bronx Latino blog readers and visitors took part in an informal poll answering the question: "What is your favorite style of Latin music?"

The majority (75 percent) said they like salsa. Pues claro, we live in el condado de la salsa.

Thirteen percent said they like merengue and another 13 percent said they prefer hip hop.

Other options, which included reggaeton and Latin Jazz, were not chosen.

Again this is an informal poll for fun, but I guess most of Bronx Latino readers are salseros.

April is Earth Month at The New York Botanical Garden

Our environment

Celebrate Earth Month at The New York Botanical Garden throughout April as part of the global observance of environmental awareness. Earth Day is April 22 and Arbor Day is April 24, but the Garden offers rich programming throughout the month as part of the celebration, including tree plantings, garden openings, new exhibitions, picnics, and poetry. Visit the garden's Web site for more details at

Learn About Climate Change, Sustainability, Biodiversity, and Science
Saturday, April 4 (1-5:30 p.m.) marks the opening of the Ruth Rea Howell Family Garden with digging, planting, and growing for the whole family. The weekend also offers Climate Change and Sustainability at the Garden, an interpretive cell phone tour guiding visitors through the Garden grounds while educating them on how Garden research contributes to the study of climate change, the challenges being faced, and what actions can be taken to mitigate the effects.
From April 9–19 as many schools are closed for their spring holidays, students and families can take part in a number of programs scheduled as part of The New York Botanical Garden’s Break for Biodiversity. Children can become “Plant Hunters” and tour the Haupt Conservatory’s permanent exhibit A World of Plants. At a Biodiversity Discovery Station in the Everett Children’s Adventure Garden, Explainers teach the importance of rain forests around the world. A Garden Scavenger Hunt for Families, created by Watson Adventures, uncovers the diversity of the plant world through the Conservatory and Garden grounds. An Explorers Walk for Families offers the opportunity to learn the history of the Garden’s 50-acre Forest with highlights of some of its notable trees. An Herbarium Specimen Making Workshop in the Arthur and Janet Ross Gallery enables children to press their own plants as the Garden’s scientists do in the field.
On April 18 and 19 (2-3:30 p.m.) and Earth Day, April 22 (12-1:30 p.m.), Café Scientifique provides visitors with the opportunity to meet a Garden scientist and talk informally about work in the field, common interests in science, and exciting discoveries made. Enjoy refreshments as you engage in behind-the-scenes discussions with our world-traveled scientists.

Tree Plantings, Spring Picnics, and Poetry During Earth Month
Pre-scheduled volunteers can participate in a Forest Tree Planting on April 18 and 19, and again on Arbor Day, April 24, and on April 25, all from 9 a.m.–12 p.m. The trees will be planted in the northern portion of the Botanical Garden’s Forest, along both the Main Trail and the Oak Trail. Contact the Volunteer Services department at 718.817.8564 to register.
On Saturday, April 25, and Sunday, April 26, enjoy Picnic on the Planet. Purchase a bag lunch at the Garden Cafe or Visitor Center Cafe, from 11 a.m.–2 p.m., take it out to Daffodil Hill and enjoy the spring blossoms. Don’t forget to pack a blanket to spread out on the grass.
April is also National Poetry Month. On April 30, celebrate National Poem in Your Pocket Day at The New York Botanical Garden. Read poems inspired by the plant world and enjoy the spring beauty of the Garden collections. Create your own nature inspired poem or pick up a poem to share with friends and family after you leave the Garden. From 3–5 p.m., enjoy an outdoor poetry reading experience in the Native Plant Garden. Listen to readings of favorite nature-inspired poetry and celebrate Mother Nature through poems from around the world.
From family activities in the Ruth Rea Howell Family Garden and Everett Children’s Adventure Garden to tours, home gardening demonstrations, and more, April kicks off the spring season at the Garden with a lot to see and do for visitors of all ages.

So Much Spring at the Garden
The New York Botanical Garden heralds the new season with So Much Spring, a variety of attractions at the Garden from April to June. Visitors to the Botanical Garden can partake in a rich, multi-sensory experience of floral delights, both outdoors and indoors, enjoying emerging flowers around the grounds as well as exhibitions, programs, and events. This year’s rich spring offerings include a multitude of flowering trees and plants throughout the Garden’s historic 250-acre landscape, The Glory of Dutch Bulbs: A Legacy of 400 Years, a new flower show in the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory, Georg Ehret: The Greatest Botanical Artist of the 1700s, an art exhibit in the LuEsther T. Mertz Library’s Gallery, a newly designed and planted Seasonal Walk, and a plethora of programming including tours, demonstrations, workshops, and much more.

For more information, visit

source: NYBG press release

Annual Spring Egg Festivities at the Bartow-Pell Mansion

Things to do in the Bx


Bartow-Pell Mansion Museum and Gardens
895 Shore Road, Pelham Bay Park

This is one day when it's okay to put all your eggs in one basket. Hunt for filled eggs in our beautiful formal garden. Enjoy light refreshments, tap your talents at the arts and crafts table, or have your photo taken with a Spring Bunny. Please bring your own basket.$15/child, free for adults and children over 13 years.

Time: 10:30 a.m. - 1 p.m.
Admission: Members: $10/child, free for adults. Appropriate for ages 2-12 years old.

Registration requested, (718) 885-1461.

(RAIN DATE: Sunday April 5)


Bronx Latino is going orange for animals

April is the ASPCA’s Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Month

One of the ASPCA's most important events is the celebration of Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Month. Each year, the ASPCA urges supporters across the country to “Go Orange for Animals” throughout the month of April—when the ASPCA’s charter was signed in 1866—to raise awareness for our cause. Going orange is a tribute to the work of the ASPCA and a celebration of compassion and kindness for all living things everywhere.
How Is the ASPCA “Going Orange” for Animals?
The ASPCA will kick off Prevention of Cruelty to Animals Month on April 7, when iconic buildings and landmarks across the country will light up orange.
Bronx Latino, a project of Puerto Rico Sun Communications, is going orange this month.
Please consider making a donation to the PRSUN for the ASPCA drive via too.

Donate at

For more information on things you could do in your community, go to

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Poetry con Salsa with Daniel Jose Custodio

Community calendar

Friday, April 3
featuring Daniel José Custodio's one-man show "Hooked"
& $150 Slam
9 - 11 p.m.
Salsa Caterers & Special Events
4006 Third Avenue

Poetry con Salsa is this Friday. For this month, it's buy one ticket @ $15 and get a second entry free.

Here's a taste of poet Daniel Jose Custodio in action:

Yankee-Fitted from Daniel José Custódio on Vimeo.

For more information,

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