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Beyond Borders

A blog about immigration in the New York region

Archive for the 'New Rochelle' Category

‘Day of the Dead’ is nigh in NY


The Day of the Dead, that macabre-but-also-festive tradition from Mexico, will be observed locally with displays and workshops at the the Pelham Art Center, New Rochelle Library and Hudson River Museum in Yonkers.

The Pelham center is holding an art workshop Saturday, and the Yonkers museum has a day of events scheduled Sunday. The library‘s Dia de Los Muertos display runs Sunday through Nov. 4.

Mexican families pay respects to their ancestors with home altars decorated with marigolds, favorite foods, and fruits. Zafiro Acevedo, who is organizing the Yonkers and Pelham events with her mother, Aurelia Fernandez, described the tradition to me two years ago.

Here’s more on the celebration and its roots. If you’re looking to create your own celebration at home, here’s what to eat.

(Photo courtesy of New Rochelle Public Library)

Posted by Leah Rae on Friday, October 29th, 2010 at 1:44 pm |

Cool treat for a hot day: Paletas in New Rochelle


This was the kind of place to be today during the heat: Paleteria La Flor de Michoacan in New Rochelle. I took photos there for an upcoming story about summer party fare. This place has 70 flavors of popsicles, from guava to coconut to “gazpacho.”

That’s Juana and Gerardo Rodriguez in their big store at 574 North Ave. They plan to sell bread there someday, and tamales too. Gerardo’s entire family seems to be in the paleta business, from his father’s place in Mexico to his siblings’ stores in Mount Vernon and Yonkers.

Posted by Leah Rae on Thursday, June 24th, 2010 at 3:49 pm |

Ellis Island to widen its scope as immigration museum


The Ellis Island Iglobal.jpgmmigration Museum is broadening its scope beyond the years when the site was an immigrant gateway, from 1892 to 1954. Immigration before and after those years will be part of the “Peopling of America Center.” The $20 million center is slated to open in 2011.

It will touch on the modern illegal immigration issue but won’t dwell too closely on it, according to the New York Times. New exhibits will allow you to view the successive waves of immigrants in individual American towns, and see the movements of people around the globe over time.

An announcement of the expansion was celebrated last week during a naturalization ceremony. Among those who took the oath of citizenship was U.S. Army Specialist Franck Dorval, a New Rochelle resident originally from Haiti. ellis.jpg

(Photo: Statue of Liberty-Ellis Island Foundation)

Posted by Leah Rae on Monday, September 29th, 2008 at 2:18 pm |
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ICE conducts raid in Yonkers, New Rochelle; 7 arrested


Will David has this report from Yonkers, where ICE and local police raided six locations this morning:

YONKERS – Yonkers police and federal agents arrested five members of three Mexican gangs in raids for illegal immigrants who are wanted for crimes, police said today

Two other people were arrested in New Rochelle.

Law enforcement agents arrested members of the Mexican gangs, Cholos 18, Vatos Locos and Aztek Pride during the raids yesterday morning, said Yonkers police Lt. Diane Hessler, a department spokeswoman.

Teams of Yonkers Narcotics and Gang Unit and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officers raided six locations in Yonkers starting at 6 a.m.

The sweep was part of the federal government’s “ICE Surge 2008” to gather people with criminal records who are in the country illegally.

Arrested from the Cholos 18 gang were Albarto Gonzalez, 18, of 114 Beech St. and Raymondo Lopez, 22 of 25 Palisade Ave.

Edgar Juarez, 18, of 26 Purser Place and Carlos Mejia, 19, of 77 Waring Place, two Vatos Locos members, were arrested, police said.

One Aztek Pride member, Victor Onofre, 24, of 33 Oak St., was arrested.

New Rochelle police, Immigration and Customs Enforcement and Westchester County Probation officers also arrested two people: Juan Valdovinos, 18, and Sereriano Valdovino, 19, both of 55 May St. in New Rochelle. Police did not say if they are related.

Posted by Leah Rae on Friday, July 25th, 2008 at 11:07 am |

Movies on the immigrant experience


Have you seen any movies that reflect the “old world vs. new world” conflicts in immigrant families, particularly between teenagers and their parents?

George Morris is looking for recommendations. A longtime ESL teacher who is semi-retired from the Yonkers schools, he is also involved in Catholic religious education in New Rochelle. Morris wanted to find movies that could help inspire discussion among a group of teen-agers who have had their confirmation and continue to meet to talk about issues in teen-age life. All are from immigrant families in New Rochelle, mostly Spanish-speaking.

curves.jpgHere are the recommendations he’s received so far after sending an email query out to ESL teachers across New York. The top response was “Real Women Have Curves.” Another popular one was “Quinceañera” (Morris notes that this one is rated R and has very strong sexual content and themes; some of these might not be suitable for the classroom).

The rest are:

  • “Bend It Like Beckham”
  • “West Side Story”
  • “Romeo and Juliet (with Leonardo DiCaprio)
  • “My Big Fat Greek Wedding”
  • “Mississippi Masala”
  • “Namesake”
  • “Double Happiness”
  • “The Joy Luck Club”
  • “Head-On” (German film)

Got any others?

Posted by Leah Rae on Thursday, March 6th, 2008 at 6:01 pm |
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Another day labor program may fizzle


Day laborers in New Rochelle may lose their official hiring site, a church parking lot where a part-time coordinator monitors hiring from March through November. The program began in June of 2005 with help from a city councilman. With that councilman voted out, the site’s organizers say they’re not willing to keep donating their time and energy. And they note, unhappily, that many of the laborers were commuting up from the Bronx. My story is posted here.

Update: City Manager Charles Strome III says the city supports the day labor site and hopes to bring members of the community together to keep the program running. New Rochelle has contributed $3,000 to $5,000 a year in funding and would consider an increase, he said. The site is a huge benefit to the city, he said, in addressing complaints about the haphazard hiring system that used to take place on Union Avenue.

Posted by Leah Rae on Thursday, December 6th, 2007 at 8:59 am |
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Reporters from The Journal News track the latest developments in immigration. Beyond Borders explores the news, the cultures and controversies.
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