July 4, 2014

Siete Ocho Siete restaurant celebrates its grand opening in Throggs Neck

On July 3rd, a new restaurant at a familiar location made its debut in the Throggs Neck section of the Bronx. "Siete Ocho Siete" or 787, which until recently was located in New Rochelle, held its grand opening at 3363 East tremont with an all-white dress party. Named after the area code in Puerto Rico, the restaurant styles a contemporary and festive caribbean island decor, with a menu of Latin-Caribbean dishes inspired from the island. 

Blending tradition with modern approach in a tropical and vibrant atmosphere, “Siete Ocho Siete” was founded and created by restaurateur Lucas Lucido, who partnered with Jackie & John Villanueva, former restaurateurs of Thirty3 Sixty3 Steakhouse.

The official launch of the restaurant drew a standing room only crowd, with nearly 100 people packed into every corner of the bar and restaurant. The vast majority of the participants did show up in white, with many of the men appearing in traditional Puerto Rican dress shirts with elaborate stitching known as guayaberas, and women in white flowing dresses. In addition to the delicious menu and Salsa music, the owners reached out to and set up a cigar vendor to provide fine quality cigars to patrons outside of the restaurant.
Newly minted boxing champ Edgar Santana, a junior welterweight for the North American Boxing Association, also made his appearance at the restaurant, showing off his belt to the cheering crowd.

With a touch of the caribbean food, nuyorican flair, and a sense of nostalgia for the golden age of Salsa and Latin Jazz, Siete Ocho Siete is sure to be a hit for the summer and beyond. 

For more information about hours, menus, and events, visit the Siete Ocho Siete Facebook page. To see additional photos from the grand opening all-white party, visit the Bronx On The Go Facebook photo album.

June 16, 2014

KBMA's drums up support for the "Unity In the Community Festival" during press conference.

Photo: Miriam Quin Photography
The Kingsbridge Road Merchants' Association (KBMA) held a press conference today at Montezuma's Restaurant, located on West Kingsbridge Road, to promote their third annual "Unity in the Community" festival this coming Saturday. The purpose of the press conference was to drum up support among English and Spanish language media for this event.

Photo: Miriam Quin Photography
"We need to make this event 'bigger and better' then last year," said KBMA's president Nancy Fernandez. "We're glad to see that there is more planning to promote this year's event." 

This year, at the direction of KBMA, the festival incorporated two promotion companies, MAS, Inc., and Promecin, and increased the number of performers and activities planned for Saturday. Additionally, both companies are taking advantage of newer media outlets and strategies to increase participation for the event. One such strategy is an opportunity to network with and meet the performers live the night before at Trio Lounge in University Heights (2347 Jerome Ave.).

Photo: Miriam Quin Photography
While everyone is expecting a great turnout and cooperation with the weather, one of the expressed concerns by some of the organizers is the withdraw of financial support by the Kingsbridge National Ice Center group. A recent spat between its members has led to a freeze of financial support for the event and potentially setting back the association thousands of dollars. As one of the panelist during the press conference, I took the time to urge the members of KNIC to set aside their differences and "do the right thing by the community and honor your agreement with the community and the merchants."

Photo: Miriam Quin Photography
Other members of the panel took the time to explain how important it was to promote this community event and that funds raised during the festival go on to support other initiatives throughout the year. "We use these funds to help provide other services for the merchants, such as advertising, reimbursing costs, and providing holiday lights on Kingsbridge Road," said vice-president Christian Ramos. Christian concluded by saying he, "...wants people to see how we are growing and doing more for the community and the residents in the area."

The Unity in the Community festival takes place on Saturday in front of the Kingsbridge Armory from 12 to 6 PM. For more information, visit the KBMA Facebook Page. For additional pictures from today's press conference, visit the Miriam Quin Photography Facebook page.

June 12, 2014

“Teens on Community Boards” Resolution, Co-Sponsored by Councilmember Ritchie Torres, Passes Through City Council Committee

New York, New York – City Council Resolution 115 to support allowing 16- and 17-year-olds to serve on their local community boards passed through the City Council committee on Governmental Relations on Tuesday, June 9th. The successful vote for resolution, co-sponsored by Council Members Kallos, Torres, Levine and Vacca, and introduced at the request of Manhattan Borough President Brewer, signals New York City’s support of Senate bill S04142, sponsored by Senator Andrew Lanza and Assembly bill A02448 sponsored by Assembly Member Nily Rozic which would amend the Public Officers Law and City Charter to allow youth to serve. 

“We need to do more to provide meaningful opportunities for young people to participate in the civic life of our city.” Said Council Member Ritchie Torres, the youngest member of the New York City Council. “Sixteen and seventeen year olds can hold jobs and pay taxes, we need to recognize them as legitimate stakeholders and give them a voice in decision making processes that directly affect them.” 

“Sixteen- and seventeen-year-olds bring much-needed perspective, energy and commitment to their local Community Boards. I've been deeply impressed by the dynamism of the teenagers who have expressed interest in public service through Community Boards, and they should be empowered to assist their neighbors instead of prevented from participating in public life,” said Council Member Kallos.

“Community boards represent an opportunity for citizens to serve their communities and engage in civic discourse,” said Senator Andrew Lanza, sponsor of the legislation in the Senate. “There are many sixteen and seventeen-year-olds who are ready, willing and able to participate as full community board members and who can offer a fresh perspective on the issues and direction of our community.”

June 9, 2014

Demands vs. Detours: Standing up for your company's image starts with you

As I go about preparing to start my own business again, I've noticed that I am coming across some of the same problems I faced previously. Not with the things that may typically knock a business off track, such as getting in over your head in debt or not marketing your company properly. No, for me, and I'm sure for many other startup businesses, the issue is others trying to define your business's vision for you. There are so many people out there "giving advice" as to how you should run your business, that sometimes you end up taking a detour when you should have been plowing forward.

The truth is, your business is developed through your own sweat equity, and while it is helpful to listen to the advice of those that have come before you, your business cannot be their vision. The minute it stops being your vision, the more likely you will allow this detour to derail your dreams, and you will become more and more frustrated at your business. This is completely different than listening to the demands of your customers, because otherwise, how would your business survive. But even with them, as well-meaning as they may be, are not in your shoes. So how do you separate the "wheat from the chaff" when it comes to listening to business advice from others? Here are three ways to check:

Gut-check: You know deep down inside if the person who is talking makes some sense, or is completely off the mark. Don't compromise your brand, image, and ultimately your business, because of a supposed authority figure or so-called experts. Too many business aspirations never make it off the ground because someone else has convinced the would be entrepreneur to go a different direction, even halting their aspirations. Don't let someone else define your vision.

Fact-check: Even with credible voices providing you "expert knowledge", don't settle for just knowing what they know, find out why they know. How come one business model took off while another failed? Why did one company's ideas flop, while another's flew? The problem with living in an instant gratification society is that we have become all too accepting of a reason without actually going through the thinking process, and then are unprepared for the consequences to our business. Don't let others define your vision.

Checkmate: You are not in business to lose, so run a race you can win. Let everyone that is providing you with advice (whether solicited or unsolicited) know that you have listened to them, but be conscious about every move you are about to make. Did the person who you were about to write-off finally make sense to you? Or was the person you trusted really clueless about your issue? You and you alone have to deal with the consequences of your actions, so be mindful before putting risking too much or too little in your business. Remember, don't let others define your vision.

So now that I told you what to do, go out and do what's best for you and your business. 

May 28, 2014

The Bronx Puerto Rican Day Parade, Inc. “La Borinquena” Will be hosting A Press Conference At Affinity Health Plan.

On Thursday May 29, 2014 at 10am The Bronx Puerto Rican Day Parade, Inc. “La Borinquena” Will be hosting A Press Conference At Affinity Health Plan.
Located at:

2500 Halsey St #2, Bronx, NY 10461
Your participation will be welcomed

On Sunday June 1st, 2014, the 27th Annual Bronx Puerto Rican Day Parade presented by LaSorsa Auto Group will run along the Grand Concourse from 192nd Street to Van Courtlandt Ave East. Opening Ceremonies at 192nd Street at 11:00AM, with a VIP reception in Poe Park at 10:00AM. Parade begins at 1:00PM

This is the largest Multi Cultural Event held in the Bronx that is celebrating the diversity of the Puerto Rican Culture and People. Joining us, there will be over 100 organizations from New York, from throughout the United States and internationally.

This year we are honoring La Fiesta Folklorica Puertorriquena, Ms. Aurea Mangual, President and Special Recognition to Oscar Lopez Rivera. This Press Conference will take place May 28, 2013 at Affinity Health Plan at  2500 Halsey St #2, Bronx, NY 10461. We will also be presenting our Queens and Princesses, along with our Kings and Princes. The god father of this year’s parade is George Hulse of Healthfirst. Also participating with us are many elected officials representing the City, State, and Federal Government, and our Grand Marshall, LaSorsa Auto Group!

Our Founder Mr. Angel Luis Rosado incorporated the Parade in 1987.  It was his vision which saw the need for the Bronx to host its very own parade, honoring those which our forefathers whom came to this country looking for meaningful employment and a brighter future for their families and children.

The Bronx then and now is the location with the largest population of Puerto Rican outside to the beloved Island, over 350,000 strong. We began with 10-15 organizations and now number well over 100 local, national and international groups.  We are proud of our diversity, cultural heritage, music, foods and dance coming together in celebration.

We invite everyone to bring their families and flags and join us in our celebration.

What: 27th Annual Bronx Puerto Rican Day Parade
When: Sunday, June 1, 2014
Where: Grand Concourse from 192nd Street
Event Contact: Jacqueline Acevedo T: 917-640-1003/