Column: Looking for a villain

Next week, Major League Baseball begins its second season. Sports Editor Mike Smith can’t wait for some playoff action. Photo courtesy

Next week, Major League Baseball begins its second season. Sports Editor Mike Smith can’t wait for some playoff action. Photo courtesy

Postseason baseball—especially when one’s team is out of contention—can acquaint a man with strange bedfellows. Maybe that can account for why I spent my Tuesday night watching the Yankees’ Wild Card game in a Red Sox bar with a bunch of Phillies fans.

But I have to admit, watching the Bombers end their season on a three-hit performance with a room full of rabid anti-fans didn’t give me the sort of rush I was looking for. In fact, I kind of found myself feeling bad for the Yankees.

Well, almost.

As you may have gleaned from previous columns, I hate the Yankees. But watching Tuesday’s game, seeing the few Yankees fans in attendance cringe and groan each time A-Rod chased a ball out of the zone, I couldn’t help but feel at least a twinge of sympathy.

Part of it stems from the fact that this 2015 team wasn’t your typical Yankees squad. Big money and free agents? Jacoby Ellsbury and his $150 million were on the bench for much of the night.

Instead, the lineup was filled with promising newcomers like Rob Refsnyder and Greg Bird. But as well as these new players—especially Bird—acquitted themselves during the season, seeing them flailing at sharp offerings from Dallas Keuchel all night was a definite letdown, especially for fans like me who hoped to see a little more firepower from a club that has lived and died by the longball this season.

Now don’t get me wrong.

These Astros, especially when Keuchel is on the mound, are an intriguing bunch. With guys like Carlos Correa, Jose Altuve and “El Oso Blanco” Evan Gattis out there, they’ve got enough personality—and lumber—to hold anyone’s interest for a long postseason run. But in the days leading up to the game, my father, a Mets fan who loathes the Yankees, brought up a good point. He was hoping for a Yankee win on Tuesday for one reason: the longer the Yankees stuck around in the playoffs, the longer he’d have a team to root against.

A quick look at the teams left standing doesn’t offer much in the way of pure villains. Sure, the Cardinals are essentially the Yankees of the National League, but the Pirates? The Cubs? The Rangers? It’s tough to find a reason to root against these squads.

That is, unless they’re playing the Mets.

Then I’m sure I’ll find a reason.


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Letter: Keep Molly Spillane’s restrictions in place



To the Editor, 

The following is an open letter that was submitted to the Village of Mamaroneck Zoning Board of Appeals on Sept. 1.

We are writing to the Mamaroneck Zoning Board of Appeals as residents of Mamaroneck who have been directly affected by the noise issues generated by Molly Spillane’s since 2009.

As people who live in or near a mixed-use commercial and residential area of Mamaroneck, it is understandable that there will be some noise. The C-2 zone on Mamaroneck Avenue has historically been a mixed-use zone combining commercial, retail and residential in close proximity. Every other business, except for Molly Spillane’s, seems to not have a problem complying with what the village noise code requires to maintain a harmonious balance between the rights of businesses and the rights of private citizens to have a quality of life, quiet and rest.

In his letter to the ZBA published on June 4, 2015, owner Mike Hynes asked repeatedly why Molly Spillane’s is being singled out for noise-reducing restrictions and having to apply yearly for a special permit. The answer is simple: Molly Spillane’s has had more noise, fights and complaints with repeated police calls and police hours required to respond to these calls than any other business in the village, yet Mr. Hynes had the audacity to demand the restrictions that the neighborhood has worked for years to put in place be lifted. We cannot summarily turn a blind eye to the hundreds of complaints and go back in time to 2008.

Since the noise restrictions passed last year, the problem has improved a great deal for village residents and their families. It is difficult to understand why Mr. Hynes would want to go back to having no restrictions whatsoever when last year at the permit meeting, he heard such a large number of area residents voicing their concerns. A petition signed by 183 adults with 144 children living in the neighborhood was submitted to the ZBA asking the board to finally do something about the ongoing noise and disturbance caused by Molly Spillane’s. Thankfully, more restrictions were put in place that have helped alleviate but not completely solve the problem, as evident by the list of complaints from the past 12 months attached to the special permit application.

We as a group would also like to point out that we have very strong relationships with the other businesses in the area such as Bar’lees, Little Kitchen, The Red Plum and the luncheonette. These local establishments have earned our patronage through their mutual respect and understanding that local residents are the backbone of any business’ success. Perhaps Molly’s may want to look at its ongoing disregard and lack of cooperation with its neighbors as the reason for them losing business, instead of demanding a handful of people—most of whom do not live here—to be allowed to disturb the peace on a patio on a Wednesday at 2 a.m..

We also understand that Molly’s pays local taxes. We as residents also pay local taxes.  Many of us have worked extremely hard and continue to do so to be able to afford to live in an area like Mamaroneck. People continue to move here because of the quality of life in the village. If Molly’s is allowed to continue to create disturbances whether inside or out at any hour, carte blanche, the subsequent media coverage and ongoing public outcry will hardly endear Mamaroneck to someone who is considering a move to our village.

The residents of the neighborhood should not have to fight the same fight again that has taken so much time, energy and effort since 2009. We are emphatically asking that the ZBA do the right thing and renew Molly Spillane’s special permit with the noise reduction restrictions left in place that we all worked so hard to implement for the sake of our legal right to peace, quiet and a healthy quality of life in our homes.


59 neighboring residents of Molly Spillane’s, 








Schools lauded by White House for achievement

hispanicBy James Pero
Just in time for national Hispanic Heritage Month, Mamaroneck schools have taken the spotlight after being lauded by the White House as one of 230 educational institutions who are helping advance Hispanic education and opportunities. 

According to the U.S. Department of Education, Mamaroneck is one of only three locations in Westchester County that has been recognized for its concerted effort to strengthen Hispanic education.

“We’re proud of the work we have accomplished in providing opportunities for all of our students and in helping to close the achievement gap,” Mamaroneck School Superintendent Dr. Robert Shaps said in a released statement. “We’re thrilled to be selected as a ‘Bright Spot.’”

The White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanics, which recently celebrated its 25th anniversary, recognized the 230 schools by declaring them “Bright Spots” among public education which have helped improve educational outcomes for Hispanic people nationwide.

Specifically, Mamaroneck has excelled in improving graduation rates—numbers which, according to New York Department of Education data, have increased substantially over the past five years—especially on the high school level. Data shows that between 2010 and 2014 Mamaroneck High School’s graduation rates for Hispanic students rose from 70 percent in 2010 to 91 percent in 2014.

Behind such a dramatic increase in graduation rates and performance amongst Mamaroneck’s Hispanic students are several initiatives, not the least impactful of which are Mamaroneck’s PALMS and PATHS programs.

PALMS, Post-secondary Access for Latino Middle-grade Students, was implemented by the Mamaroneck Free Union School District in an effort to strengthen Hispanic communities’ academic skills and provide learning opportunities to set goals.

PATHS, Program Alignment Team for Hispanic Students, similarly has aimed to integrate the Hispanic communities into the educational system by translating all school information into Spanish and organizing school meetings for Spanish-speaking parents.

According to Milan Bhatt, executive director of Mamaroneck’s Community Resource Center, formerly the Hispanic Resource Center, programs like PATHS and PALMS are especially important in the Mamaroneck community where the Hispanic population totals 24 percent, according to the latest national census data.

“We’ve been really pleased with the response we’ve gotten,” Bhatt said. “Our goal is to integrate the immigrant community…We do everything to make sure the Hispanic community is not left behind.”

Though there are a number of programs which Waldina Pineda, a ninth grade English teacher at Mamaroneck High School, said may be responsible for the marked improvement in Hispanic achievement, the Mamaroneck Scholars program, which she spearheads, is similarly doing its part.

The two-year-old program is designed to support disadvantaged Hispanic students “socially, emotionally, and academically” by providing after-school assistance, and according to Pineda, she has already seen students grow tremendously.

She said students who would have never considered college are now becoming the first in their family to pursue higher education, and the students who would never have pursued advanced classes in high school are now joining those programs as well.


The Mamaroneck school district has been highlighted by the White House as one of 230 educational institutions that are helping the Hispanic community attain higher levels of education. Mamaroneck High School’s Hispanic graduation rate has climbed dramatically over the past five years, jumping from 70 percent in 2010 to 91 percent in 2014. File photo

“These are students who we know are capable of taking these higher level classes but who might not take them on their own,” Pineda said. “It’s awesome to see how far they’ve grown.”

Andrea Zanzea, a Mamaroneck High School senior who has been involved in the program throughout the past two years, can attest to just how important Mamaroneck Scholars has been to her education.

“We help each other out,” said Zanzea, noting that the program has helped her tremendously, especially in terms of Advanced Placement courses. “[Pineda] is an amazing teacher…She gives us the confidence and the support we need.”

But for Pineda, programs like Mamaroneck Scholars are much more than just improved test scores and higher college enrollment. She said the students are a reason to get up in the morning.

“They remind me every single day why I became a teacher,”
she said.



A simple reminder of how and why we matter

By HOWARD Sturman
Several weeks ago, I accompanied one of our salespeople to the office of the advertising director of a giant retailer. In and of itself, getting the appointment was a big deal; if we could convince him to advertise with us, it would be an even bigger deal. 

Although I firmly believe in the values and benefits of our five weekly newspapers, I must have been a little intimidated by the size and importance of this retailer because the first question I asked was, “What do you think of local newspapers, especially as an advertising vehicle?”

To my delight, the advertising director demonstrated a true sense of excitement.

“I love them,” he said. “While I live in New York City during the week, reading my local paper is the first thing I do when I return to my weekend home in the suburbs. Like everyone else, I’m keenly interested in what’s going on around town, so let’s talk about how advertising in your papers can help us.”

And we did.

Not so surprisingly, the meeting had the kind of happy ending we had dreamed about.

I think this little story dramatically illustrates the importance of local papers to their communities—both to readers and businesses, which depend on them to build customer traffic.

What’s more, and for good reasons, I believe the newspapers that comprise our Home Town Media Group warrant your support, especially from an advertising standpoint; after all, no one offers what we do: a captive audience who appreciates hard news about their community, and prefers shopping locally whenever possible.

I like to characterize us as a scrapbook of the local scene, with each and every week representing a new entry in an ongoing, exciting saga.

We appreciate those of you who already support us and we yearn to move even more of you over to our side. And to show you our appreciation, every issue, beginning in October, will contain a highly-visible box noting your support.

It serves as just another way of celebrating your importance to us.



Rally calls attention to maternity care

One of the signs  highlighting one disparity of maternal health- care between African-American and Caucasian women in the U.S.  Contributed photo

One of
the signs
highlighting one
disparity of
maternal health-
care between
and Caucasian
women in the U.S.
Contributed photo

By Sibylla Chipaziwa
If you happened to drive near Harbor Island Park this past Labor Day, you may have noticed a small group holding up signs like “Honk if you have a mother” or “Evidence-based care.” 

This had nothing to do with abortion, as some passersby may have thought. Instead, this was one of many rallies held across the United States to call attention to the current state of maternity care. In its fourth year, the Rally to Improve Birth strives to raise awareness about the limited birth options and care available in the country, and advocates for evidence-based care and humanity during childbirth.

According to, a project of the George Washington University that provides information via research, there are 49 countries ahead of the U.S. in women surviving childbirth, with the maternal mortality rate in America doubling in the past 25 years. Twenty-eight women died per 100,000 live births in 2013, according to World Health Organization—a statistic that has only increased. America’s rising maternity mortality rate is largely due to a lack of access to proper healthcare and education about pre-natal care.

With one in every three childbirths being performed via Cesarean section—a risky and often unnecessary procedure—and nine out of 10 women getting care that increases the risk of harm to them and their babies, Improving Birth, the nonprofit organization behind the rallies, hopes that raising awareness helps brings research and change to the maternity healthcare system in the United States.

“There’s something wrong, and it needs to be studied and it needs to be fixed,” said Christina Carino-Forrest, one of the coordinators of Mamaroneck’s rally.

Carino-Forrest, a mother of two from New Rochelle, added that women today are twice as likely to die during childbirth as their mothers were, despite advances in technology.

“African-American women are three times as likely to die [during childbirth] in this country, regardless of class,” she added.

Participants at the Harbor Island Park entrance during Mamaroneck’s Rally to Improve Birth, which took place on Labor Day. The annual rally runs simultaneously in cities across America. Photo/Bobby Begun

Participants at the Harbor Island Park entrance during Mamaroneck’s Rally to Improve Birth, which took place on Labor Day. The annual rally runs simultaneously in cities across America. Photo/Bobby Begun

Carino-Forrest’s passion for women’s health comes from her experiences as a birth doula, a physical and emotional source of comfort for women, especially new parents, during birth.

“[The current healthcare system is] not supporting women; we’re not doing what’s best for mother and baby. We’re not doing what the evidence said we should be doing,” she added.  “We’re harboring old practices that make money for insurance companies.”

Co-coordinator of the Mamaroneck birth care rally, Faith McFall-Smith, a mother of two from Yonkers, is African-American and feels that raising awareness about the disparities between Caucasian women and women of color would also help improve birth options.

“It’s unfortunate, and a lot of it is lack of education and lack of opportunity,” McFall-Smith said. “It goes back to a broader conversation around race in this country. A lot of it for me is very personal.”

Having had a C-section with her firstborn, which she later found out was unnecessary, McFall-Smith took control of her second child’s birth by having a home delivery after educating herself on the available birthing options.

Her husband Gary Smith said he was initially scared of opting to have a home birth, but after doing his own research, supported his wife’s decision.

“I wanted my wife to be as comfortable as possible, especially with what we went through with our first birth,” he said. He added that he found out that C-sections can reduce a woman’s fertility.

Joyce Havinga-Droop, a birth doula from Larchmont, is the president of the Hudson Valley Birth Network, an organization that provides listings of birth workers and resources for childbirth assistance.

Havinga-Droop suggested that Westchester County’s high C-section rate of 39.2 percent, according to 2012 data from the New York State Department of Health, may have to do with distrust in natural birth.

“We should trust that birth can do what it needs to do,” she said, adding that pregnant women should trust their bodies and the natural birthing process.

Originally from the Netherlands—which ranks No. 6 to America’s No. 33 in the 2015 State of the World’s Mothers report, which compares motherhood worldwide, from the charity Save the Children—Havinga-Droop said she was able to choose her birthing method, which was natural, in the Netherlands, and she hopes her three daughters will be given the right to choose their birthing methods here in the United States.

“Had I not been educated and given some opportunities, I probably would have been cut twice for no reason,” McFall-Smith said. “I was able to help myself, [and] made the choice to have a home birth—one of the best days of my life, easy.”



There’s more to life in the ‘burbs

It’s peaceful here in the ‘burbs. Our nights are filled with the sounds of crickets, not the sounds of traffic horns. We’ve got two or three neighbors, not two or three hundred. We’ve got fresh air, trees and lawns, parking spots for our minivans, a bit of elbow room.

Still, our counterparts living in the big city wonder about our quiet life, thinking it is perhaps a tad provincial, assuming we are missing out on something. “What of art?” they may ask us. “What of culture?”

Clearly they haven’t taken a look at the fall schedule at The Performing Arts Center. We here at The Center take great pride in the fact that the artists you can see and hear on our stages are not only of the same caliber as those you can catch on a night out in Manhattan, they are, in fact, the very same artists.

For example, on Sunday, Oct. 11, we’ll be presenting the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra. Orpheus was founded in New York City in 1972 by a group of musicians who aspired to apply the chamber music principles of individual participation and personal responsibility to an orchestral setting. Central to these principles was the musicians’ commitment to rehearse and perform without a conductor, which they do to this day at their home base in Carnegie Hall.

The conductor-less orchestra concept is interesting enough by itself, but on Oct. 11, our audiences are in for an even bigger treat—the chance to experience the world premiere of contemporary master Wolfgang Rihm’s new “Duo Concerto,” written especially for Orpheus and the award-winning husband and wife team of cellist Jan Vogler and violinist Mira Wang. It won’t be until a few days later that the piece will be heard at Carnegie Hall in New York City; the European premiere isn’t until the 24th.

The concert, a celebration of German Romanticism, includes works by Mendelssohn and Schumann in addition the Rihm premiere. It will begin at 3 p.m. on Sunday, Oct. 11; tickets are $80, $65 and $50.

Also in October: classical piano quintet The 5 Browns, Oct. 3; and the hilarious and very talented Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain, Oct. 4. On Oct. 10, Vertigo Dance Company brings us contemporary dance from Israel that explores the connections among society, art and movement. Back by popular demand, the world-renowned Chamber Music Society of Lincoln Center kicks off their four-concert series on Oct. 17. And as the weather gets cooler, the Performing Arts Center turns up the heat on Oct. 24 with Ana Gasteyer’s “I’m Hip,” a show that evokes the swagger of an era when a lady ruled a nightclub and an audience knew they were in for a good time.

So there you have it. You don’t have to schlepp into the city to be on the cutting edge of the performing arts scene; life right here in the ‘burbs has got plenty to offer.

Mara Rupners is the director of marketing at
The Performing Arts Center. The Performing Arts Center,
Purchase College, 735 Anderson Hill Road,
Purchase, N.Y. 10577

Box Office: 251-6200
Hours: Tuesday-Friday, noon
to 6 p.m. and on weekends
before performances

Huskies top Panthers

Sofia Noejovich chases down a loose ball. Photos/Mike Smith

Sofia Noejovich chases down a loose ball. Photos/Mike Smith

Sometimes, playing with confidence can make all the difference in the world. On Sept. 28, a supremely-confident Harrison team traveled to Rye Neck and exploded offensively, topping the Panthers 5-0 to improve to 6-3 on the season. 

For the Panthers, the game was another learning experience against a highly-skilled opponent.

Karina Barchlow led the way for Harrison, scoring twice and dishing out three assists while Emma Hochman and Erin Nelson each added a goal and an assist during a game that saw Harrison manage 20 shots on goal. Gia Mancini also found the net for the Huskies.

According to Harrison coach Jon-Erik Zappala, Harrison’s outburst was an indication that the team is starting to gel around the midway point of the season.

“We’re nine games in and I think we’re starting to feel a little more comfortable,” the coach said. “[Against Rye Neck] you could see it in our passing…and in our communication.”

Harrison’s defense also came up big when the Panthers pushed the attack and keeper Kate Ryan had a tremendous save midway through the first half after redirecting a Panther shot over the crossbar.

On the Rye Neck side, there were some positives to take from the game.

Serina Guillanti battles a Rye Neck player for control of the ball during Harrison’s win. The Huskies are currently 6-3 on the year.

Serina Guillanti battles a Rye Neck player for control of the ball during Harrison’s win. The Huskies are currently 6-3 on the year.

“When we were able to keep possession, we were able to utilize the speed that Sophia Wice has on the outside,” said Rye Neck coach Susan Hannon. “When we connected our passes, we were able to create some opportunities.”

And Panther goalie Julia Kelly did her best against Harrison’s torrid attack, racking up 15 saves to help keep Rye Neck in the game.

For the 1-7 Panthers—who have battled injuries and illness to key players all season long—losses to teams like Harrison should only serve to prepare the team for its postseason endeavors.

“Putting teams like Harrison and Nanuet on the schedule, those are stronger schools,” Hannon said. “In the past, when we’ve made sectionals, we hadn’t been tested in the regular season, so this is good experience for us.”

The Panthers will travel to Dobbs Ferry on Sept. 30, after press time, to take on the Eagles, who are coming off a shutout loss of their own, a 4-0 defeat at the hands of a solid Ardsley team.

Samantha Zinman blasts a shot against Rye Neck. After two big wins, Harrison is gearing up for a showdown with rival Rye.

Samantha Zinman blasts a shot against Rye Neck. After two big wins, Harrison is gearing up for a showdown with rival Rye.

“We’re about halfway through the season, and we’ve got some of our players coming back, which is a positive,” Hannon said. “We have a lot of younger girls, but they’ve shown great versatility. We’re just not there yet.”









Rye Neck goalie Julia Kelly stops a shot against Harrison. Kelly had 15 saves on the day.

Rye Neck goalie Julia Kelly stops a shot against Harrison. Kelly had 15 saves on the day.


Column: There’s only one October

Next week, Major League Baseball begins its second season. Sports Editor Mike Smith can’t wait for some playoff action. Photo courtesy

Next week, Major League Baseball begins its second season. Sports Editor Mike Smith can’t wait for some playoff action. Photo courtesy

If you’re not absolutely tingling with anticipation for next week to arrive, I’m going to have to ask that you renounce your baseball fandom immediately.

Yes, we’re finally here. After slogging through a 162-game season, it’s playoff time once again, and I’d be hard-pressed to remember a time when there was as much baseball buzz in the area heading into October.

On one hand, you’ve got the Mets, the brash upstarts with a fearsome rotation who just clinched the NL East title for the first time in almost a decade. On the other hand, you’ve got a Yankees team that is still attempting to nail down that final win and has far surpassed expectations this year—though you wouldn’t know it judging by the grumblings of the fanbase on the airwaves of WFAN.

The Mets are preparing for a first-round showdown with the one team in the postseason that can seemingly match them ace-for-ace, as Grienke, Kershaw, and the Los Angeles Dodgers come to town, while the Yanks’ postseason fate is still technically uncertain. But even before the Bombers (likely) take the field on Tuesday night for the one-game playoff, there are so many questions that will no doubt be captivating the tri-state area.

Will Tanaka be healthy enough to pitch?

How will rookies like Luis Severino and Greg Bird fare during their first-ever postseason?

Should current Yankees rub the head of Derek Jeter for good luck in the postseason?

The Mets, too, have their own uncertainty as they head toward their first postseason since 2006. Over the last month or so, Terry Collins has employed seemingly endless permutations of lineups and defensive alignments, but will need to determine which players have earned starting spots in the NLDS. His deep pitching staff also gives him flexibility—and decisions to make.

But even if you’re not a fan of New York teams, there is so much that makes this one of the most intriguing postseason landscapes in recent years. Three teams from the NL Central will be in the mix, vying for the pennant: the long-suffering Cubs, the steady Cardinals and a Pirates team that is hoping to channel 1979 for this year’s run.

Toronto, perhaps the best team in the American League, could potentially be without its all-world shortstop.

The last AL wild card spot? That’s still up in the air with the Angels, Astros and Twins all hoping to extend their season and earn a shot at the Yankees.

For the next five weeks, each baseball game is appointment viewing. You don’t know what you’re going to see, which players are going to raise their games or who will crumble under the pressure. Even for fans like me, those without a rooting interest, there’s more than enough drama to keep me invested.

I just hope the rest of you feel the same way.


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Op-ed: Elected officials ill-equiped for deer discussion


By Taffy Williams
I attended the meeting for deer (and coyote) management in the Village of Mamaroneck on Friday, Sept. 25, which in many ways, except for trying to halt—or make sense of—the madness of a deer cull was a complete waste of taxpayers’ and my time.

The wildlife biologist, Kevin Clarke, pounded the concept that deer are “overpopulated” in Mamaroneck and that bow and arrow hunting is the preferred cull method, but failed to consider that deer are transient, wide-ranging foragers, and travel a specific habitual route around their home range during the night and, however infrequently, during the day. Clark failed to consider or discuss that this could be and is most likely a small population of no more than 20 to 30 deer roaming through Mamaroneck and Rye on a quest for food and survival, and because the deer are constantly being recounted, the numbers keep inflating.

One person may see a handful of deer in the Rye Marshlands, and believe there are a dozen deer there. During the day, the same group of deer may move to the Read Sanctuary, where someone may see them again and claim there are a dozen more deer. The same deer may move to another wooded area and may be counted as more deer, and so on.

There is no solid proof that there are more than 20 to 30 deer in Mamaroneck.

Without an accurate population assessment, this debate, and a discussion about the “final solution” to the deer problem, are moot. Either way, there is no “final solution” to solving the deer problem. If this small herd is eradicated, others outside will reproduce and move in. Since the same small herd is being recounted over and over again, facilitating a cull is unjustified. Killing these deer will only benefit the hunters who find sport in harming animals and offending the villagers who love wildlife, want to see them protected and object to any management plan that involves killing.

Westchester County’s “deer management specialist” John Baker, is a non-credible member of the pro-hunting faction, and has shown that such a group can not be trusted to give an accurate assessment of any deer population. The numbers presented by Baker in February 2015 are grossly exaggerated to justify kill permits: 74 deer per quarter-square mile, or roughly 300 deer per square mile in Mamaroneck. This would be like deer rush hour at Grand Central Station, with 1,800 deer roaming the little 6-square-mile village. This quota is absurd and hard to believe. Even Wildlife Biologist Clarke agreed.

After the hunting-skewed inflated numbers had been publicly ridiculed, the county admitted the counting method was invalid. Westchester County and John Baker’s team should have been banned from any counting of wildlife due to its pro-hunting bias and record of inaccuracies. Regardless of their motives for miscounting the wildlife population, Westchester County should not be allowed this responsibility anymore.

As a New York State Department of Environmental Conser-vation wildlife rehabilitator, I request to participate in the “deer count” process. Each deer should have an unmistakable photographic identification, which is a simple and easy process that will help accurately assess the small herd in Mamaroneck. If I am prevented from participating, my colleagues and I will conduct our own population identity assessment and will publish this information.

No cull should be approved until an accurate population assessment is provided, including carrying capacity analysis, which should not be completed by Westchester County, the county bow hunters association or any firearm or bow-hunting-associated organization, and not without complete oversight by a team of licensed wildlife rehabilitators.

Another deer-related myth I would like to clarify has to do with the term “deer tick,” which describes the black-legged tick, or Ixodes scapularis, that may carry Lyme disease. Many victims of Lyme disease blame deer for carrying these ticks, but the black-legged tick is also found on mice, squirrels, birds, raptors, foxes, raccoons, possums and potentially any warm-blooded land-based species. Many factors determine the deer carrying capacity of Mamaroneck’s suburban landscape, including the presence of suitable vegetation for food and relative safety, and busy, vehicle-congested Mamaroneck provides little of either.

During last Friday’s meeting, Mayor Norman Rosenblum said that people have complained about deer all throughout Mamaroneck. I am demanding full disclosure of complaints, including how many, contact information for verification and the location of each complaint.

We believe that the meeting’s outcome went as so because of the amount of  bow hunters and lack of wildlife biologists or women on the panel. We also contest Clarke’s saying that bow and arrows kill deer within 30 seconds, calling it “the most humane method of controlling deer.”

As he spoke, I held up an enlarged poster/photo showing a deer with a long-time festering wound from an arrow that had gone through its head. The deer is surviving with this arrow still embedded in its head, and is at ground level feeding. The use of bow and arrow hunting is neither accurate, quick, nor humane, yet this completely inaccurate information is blared out to the public with absolute authority. We also object to the fact that deer-management options that did not involve killing were only explored briefly and were quickly dismissed. Proposing the hunting of deer in densely-populated Mamaroneck is both inconsiderate of the consequences with respect to public health and safety and dismissive of the people who take pleasure and comfort in seeing the deer population.

The proof that deer are still surviving here helps people believe that humans haven’t destroyed everything after all,
despite whether or not that is true.


Taffy Williams is a Class One wildlife rehabilitator in the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation Special Licenses Unit. The views expressed are hers.


What’s going on in Mamaroneck

Mamaroneck Public Library

For information on regular programs and other events, visit

Seminar for Special Needs Trusts

A special needs trust can be established by families who are the primary caregivers of a child with disabilities. The goal of a special needs trust is to improve the quality of the child’s life and provide a sense of confidence for the future. This can be achieved because this type of trust helps to manage resources while maintaining a disabled person’s eligibility for government programs. Therefore, they can possibly receive existing government benefits and assets set aside in the trust for additional expenses. Presented by Calderone Financial Services. Wednesday, Oct. 7 from 6:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m. in the Community Room.

Larchmont Public Library

For information on regular programs and other events, visit

Stand Tall and Live a Long, Healthy Life

Thursday, Oct. 8 at 7 p.m. in the Village Center. No registration required. This seminar, led by Dr. Hiro Izumi, will discuss how poor posture causes pains and stiffness, the effects of wrong posture versus strong posture, how posture impacts aging, and how “structure dictates function.” Exercises you can do at home to improve your posture will also be discussed. Dr. Izumi is passionate about teaching people how to prevent disease and how to restore normal function back to the body naturally. He strongly believes that education plays an important role in attaining knowledge about a person’s health. Once a person learns how their health problems are created, they will be empowered to know how to correct the problem. He has extensive knowledge in enzyme nutrition and functional digestive nutritional testing. For more than 10 years, he has worked with an extensive array of digestive issues and many other challenging health conditions with tremendous success. Made possible by the Larchmont Lion’s Club.

Graphic Novel Book Group

For ages 8 to 11. Friday, Oct. 9 at 3:30 p.m. Online registration required at Do you love graphic novels? Then this is for you. Come to the first meeting of the graphic novel book group and take a look at some Advanced Reader Copies, ARCs, of some up-and-comers, and we’ll talk about our favorites. Then, we’ll decide what we’ll all read for the next meeting.

Woman’s Club of Mamaroneck

The next monthly meeting of the Woman’s Club of Mamaroneck will be held on Tuesday, Oct. 6 at 7:30 p.m. The meeting will be held at the club’s headquarters located at 504 Cortlandt Ave. in Mamaroneck. The guest speaker will be Village of Mamaroneck Mayor Norman Rosenblum. If you are interested in joining the club, please call 698-9749.


Internship program

LMCTV is offering an internship program for interested and qualified students from neighboring area schools. The program includes training in field and studio television production, development of documentary video and news projects. The program provides training in Final Cut Pro, and creates promotional clips for series shows, station promos and public service announcements. Interns can learn hands-on production techniques by assisting with the production of existing shows. Interested applicants should contact studio production manager Dena Schumacher at

‘The Local Live!’

Tune in to LMCTV’s hyper local, interactive news show Thursday nights at 7:30 p.m. on Cablevision Channel 75, Verizon Channel 36. During the show, join the discussion. Call 381-0150, email or tweet @thelocallive.

Spooktacular volunteers needed

Spooktacular returns on Sunday, Oct. 25. The Village of Mamaroneck Chamber of Commerce is very excited that the Spooktacular has become one of the most anticipated events in our community. We can’t do it without the help of many volunteers and donations that are generously given.

If, in the past you have contributed we are asking, can you again this year? We need music, performances, printing, pumpkins, gifts and candy for the goodie bags, and of course financial donations to defray the costs. The most important component of a successful Spooktacular—volunteers. You can send an email to Pam Moran at, call her at 698-4400, or mail your donations to the Mamaroneck Chamber Office, 430 Center Ave.

Please don’t let the children of Mamaroneck down; sign on to help make this Spooktacular the best ever.


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