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Activists Fume at Excessive July 4th Partying on Mosholu Parkway

Activists Fume Excessive July 4th Partying on Mosholu Parkway
TRASH FROM THE July 4th celebrations on Mosholu Parkway. The hours long partying irked many residents.
Photo by Devin Dae Tucker

Activists are demanding answers over how the local 52nd Precinct could allow illegal barbecues to go on for hours along Mosholu Parkway over the July 4th weekend, despite the presence of “No Barbecuing” signs throughout parkway. They’ve now reached out to local elected officials and are in the stages of planning a meeting to get answers.

Many residents vented frustration on Facebook, posting photos of other residents setting up tents, lounge chairs and speakers across the leafy mall. The day after July 4th, mounds of trash can be spotted around Mosholu Parkway.

Activists Fume Over Hours Long Partying on Mosholu Parkway
LEFTOVER TRASH FROM the day-and-night partying on Mosholu Parkway.
Facebook

Leftover trash and burnt out ashes the day after July 4th remain a recurring sight on Mosholu Parkway. For years, residents have battled outsiders crashing Mosholu Parkway and pitching their tents for the day. Loud music, accompanied with heavy drinking is the norm, according to many residents there. Barbecuing is illegal on the parkway as there are no barbecue pits to safely cook food.

The partying was just isolated to Mosholu Parkway. At Williamsbridge Oval Park, just a quarter mile from Mosholu Parkway, there were several barbecues reported at the park. Remnants of fireworks were also spotted a day after the big celebration.

Fernando Tirado, the former district manager of Community Board 7 and a local resident, immediately sent an email to the 52nd Precinct, Community Board 7 and Councilman Andrew Cohen, who’s district covers the parkway, chronicling what he saw throughout July 4th.

“It has been a disaster along both sides of the parkway, including a block away from the precinct,” Tirado wrote. “Bedford Park and Norwood are under siege by the declining quality of life, which the Five-Two routinely failed to address properly.”


 

Michael Medina, another resident, responded to Tirado’s email he sent out saying the lower quality of life has caused Norwood and Bedford Park to revert “back to the mid 70s and 80s when New York was at it worst.”

By nightfall on Independence Day, the inhabitants at Mosholu Parkway continued partying, with at least one fist fight reported. Sandra Pabon, a Bedford Park resident and NYPD chaplain, took to Facebook Live to record two pit fires. “They’re lighting up garbage cans, look at this,” Pabon, narrating, said. “That’s Mosholu Parkway on fire.”

Elizabeth Quaranta, president of Friends of Mosholu Parkland, described the scene as chaos with firecrackers going off and loud music that could be heard at least one terrain over. Though she sympathized with partygoers, Quaranta said rules should be enforced. But one month alerting partygoers isn’t enough, Quaranta said. She hoped the “No Barbecue” signs that are sporadically posted across the parkland should read what the fine should be.

Anthony Rivieccio, a community activist on Bedford Park, is now planning a quality of life meeting slated for next month. Jason Laidley, chief of staff for state Senator Jamaal Bailey, who represents Norwood/Bedford Park, said the office is willing to attend the meeting to hear from residents. Christina Polizzi, a spokesperson for Councilman Andrew Cohen, who also represents the neighborhoods, said his office is also willing to attend.

Polizzi said the office has worked the phones to ask the 52nd Precinct to enforce the no barbecue mandate, while also calling on the Parks Department to cleanup the parkway. Last year, Cohen had earmarked monies for a so-called “gator” smart car to help the Parks Department get around the parkway  faster. Cohen also funded monies for cleanup crews from the Fedcap program. They were called in today to help clean up the parkway, Polizzi said.

It took hours before police would arrive to clear the parkway. Parks Department crews were there to clear the area. The commanding officer of the 52nd Precinct, Deputy Inspector Peter Fiorillo, was unavailable for comment.

Quaranta, meantime, is ready to talk to Emily Walker, a representative for New Yorkers for Parks. The group has been successful in convincing the de Blasio Administration to increase the New York City Parks Department’s budget.

“I think we have to go big here. We can’t put a band aid on this,” Quaranta said. “This is more than that. We have to get the different agencies at the table, not just the 52nd Precinct.”

At the Bedford Mosholu Community Association meeting in May, officers said the precinct will be taking a different approach to enforcement, issuing warnings while using discretion over who would be ticketed and who would be ordered to break up any party.

 

 

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6 thoughts on “Activists Fume at Excessive July 4th Partying on Mosholu Parkway

  1. rosaly ruiz

    if the community has an issue than the community should unite and take action. the economy, in every part of the country, is under extreme duress. we cannot realistically believe that the police can keep up former mayor giuliani’s “quality of life campaign”. especially when we have very conflicting ideology in place within our local government. we have social media and elected officials condemning officers every day, we have real life interactions with officers that dictate a real need for their presence. it’s extremely confusing right now, especially for someone working as a public or civil servant. so instead of throwing tantrums and wasting tax payer money, how about you organize! that is our constitutional right as well. to collectively gather and defend your family, land, etc. help the officers out and defend your community otherwise stop complaining and move out. The Bronx is for the strong and willing!

  2. Patricia Shannon Constantinides

    Well I grew up on Mosholu Parkway and in the Oval and I don’t agree that it was at its worst in the 70’s & 80’s as stated in the article above. Although we did not BBQ in these areas, we did hang out. Everyone knew each other and watched out for each other. It was as safe to walk the streets at 3AM as it was at 3PM. Families went to the Oval for the pool or the sprinklers and had picnics. Kids rode their bikes and played game like King/Queen, kick ball & wiffle ball. Parents weren’t afraid for their children when they were gone for the day with their friends. I had the best childhood!!!

    I have been back to the neighborhood (what we called it back then) and it has changed horribly. I would not walk there alone at any time of the day!

    1. Ralph

      Area was great and safe in the 70s early 80s because we had pride in ourselves and our neighborhood despite the debacle of liberal policies….today the area is disgusting in so many ways…PD has their hands full with all the crime that QOL issues take a back seat…..good luck…..when things get worst over time ,when they should get better….take a hard look at whats changed

  3. MARY

    WE WERE DOING THIS IN THE 70’S 80’S & 90’S IT’S NOT GOING CHANGE NOW! THE ONLY THING WE NEVER LEFT GARBAGE BEHIND, WE CLEANED UP. THEY WERE THE GOOD OLD DAYS BACK THEN, WE EVEN GRILLED ON FIRE ESCAPE & DOWN IN FRENCH CHARLIE’S BALCONY & PARK. THE COPS NEVER BOTHERED US.

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