The Daily Plant : Monday, April 9, 2001
COLUMBIA STUDENTS TAKE ACTION IN NEIGHBORHOOD PARKS
"When they are directed toward a single park, volunteer efforts can provoke real change in a neighborhood. A park that is clean, green, and safe becomes a magnet not only for neighborhood recreation, but for the kind of social activity that builds strong communities." So spoke Commissioner Henry J. (StarQuest) Stern to the hundreds of Columbia University students who devoted Sunday, April 1, 2001 to six parks in Northern Manhattan. Highbridge, Inwood, Marcus Garvey, Morningside, Riverside, and St. Nicholas Parks benefited from the added energy and manpower of the Columbia students. Their work helped gardeners and park managers begin to realize their master vision for the season.
Sunday exposed some students to parks they'd never seen before. Eileen (Funny Girl) Remor, Partnerships Outreach Coordinator, reports that at Highbridge Park, students were amazed by the expanse of nature available in New York City. They were filled with questions about the park, and eager to return. The prospect of canoeing from the nature center may entice several students back to Inwood Hill Park.
Parkies from districts 9, 12, 11, and 14 and the leaders of several Friends of Parks organizations volunteered with the students. As the groups got to know one another, there was a growing appreciation of how they can be helpful to each other. Four eight-year-old basketball players, curious about the sudden appearance of college students, joined the clean-up, and made a few new friends. Thanks to the Parkies and volunteers who mulched, raked, and cleaned up the parks in time for spring. Their work furthered our ongoing efforts to foster strong relationships between Parkies and park users.
CUNNINGHAM PARK GETS CLEAN
In the cold and the damp of April Fool's Day, 200 Greeks from St. John's University in Queens arrived at Cunningham Park prepared to do battle with dead leaves and trash. Over the course of their two hours, a burst of volunteerism during Greek Week, they raked leaves, removed dead logs, and packed out pounds of garbage. The students worked alongside Jim (Hurricane) Cafaro; Park Manager; Thomas (Tomcat) Panzone, Partnerships Outreach Coordinator, and several Parks supervisors. The Parkies report that the students' help made an important dent in the work they have ahead of them. Equally important, Sunday's clean-up was a chance for the students who enjoy Cunningham Park as their school's own backyard, to take action on behalf of the park's future. They conducted the volunteer version of a 5x5, and learned that Cunningham Park is available to them not only as a place to play and relax, but a place for public service.
THIRTEEN YEARS AGO IN THE PLANT
(Monday, April 18, 1988)
GREAT HORNED OWL IS RESCUED AND REUNITED WITH ITS FAMILY AFTER FALL AT VAN CORTLANDT
A newborn Great Horned owl, rescued earlier this month after it fell from its nest in Van Cortlandt Park's 600-acre forest, has been reunited with its family in its natural habitat.
A Bronx Zoo employee spotted the owl on the ground while walking through the park woods, and placed the young bird in a nearby tree. The next day the rescuer found the owl back on the ground so she took it to the Bronx Zoo hospital for observation. Deemed healthy, the young creature was taken to wildlife rehabilitators in Greenwich, Connecticut to be reared and eventually released back into the wild.
QUOTATION FOR THE DAY
Each day I live in a glass room
Unless I break it with the thrusting
Of my senses and pass through
The splintered walls to the great landscape."
Mervyn Peake (1911-1968)