Seaport Report

BY JANEL BLADOW  |  Summer’s over. School’s back. Leaves are dropping. Fall’s nipping. There’s a crisp breeze in the air. And the party continues…

 Cop out… Saturday gazillions of N.Y.P.D. officers surrounded Chase Bank down in the Financial District. Internet rumors abounded of a major rally against bankers. Nada happened, but believe me, the sea of blue would have prevented even Hurricane Irene; should’ve thought of that a few weeks ago.

 

Changes… Samsara is to open on Oct. 3 with a tapas-style menu. The space, which has been under construction for almost a year, looks stylish with a long bar and banquette under a wall sculpture of living plants. Lei closed last month but is expected to reopen soon as a comfort food, homey-type place.

 

Full alert… Seems as if the area has become host to an unsavory element. Last week, Downtown Express Police Blotter reported four crimes committed in our ‘hood, a purse snatching on Dover Street, a wallet snatching at the No. 2 William and Fulton Street subway, a face bashing at Maguire’s Bar on Cliff Street, and a car theft of a 2011 Hundai in broad daylight (between 10 and 11am no less) on Peck Slip. The question is: who needs a new Hundai on a Thursday morning?

In addition, Water Street neighbors report seeing and hearing a cat burglar at a neighbor’s window by the Dover Street. garden. The culprit was scared off. Be on your toes kids.

 

Rat patrol part 4… Business owners and residents alike in the Seaport area have remarked that the horrid, black boxes seem to be working with fewer sightings of the gray vermin except late, late at night. So the second question is: do you look down when walking along Dover Street in the evening to avoid stepping on a rat, or should your peripheral vision be on the lookout for a purse-snatcher?

 

Bad dog park… Apparently the fabulous new dog run on the East River Parkway at Wall Street has become a breeding ground for a canine version of “Contagion.” Reports surfaced of at least three dogs becoming seriously ill, suffering diarrhea and vomiting. Dog owners claim that there is no hose to clean up the messes, that some owners don’t pick up, mostly because they don’t see where pooches are peeing and pooping because the run is so big and has so many nooks and crannies, and the N.Y.C. Economic Development Corp., which is responsible for keeping the run it built clean, has dropped the ball.

On Saturday, owners were fuming. The run was locked all day. A notice said it was closed for cleaning for two hours at two different times of the day, both Saturday and Sunday. However, even the guard assigned to open the park was given orders not to, and was upset that residents were going to call him the “bad guy.” He told SR that he was there all day and no one came to clean even though it was midday. A couple of guys jumped the fence, hoisted their dogs and kids over, and played inside. One told SR, “I heard dogs got sick. But it’s Saturday. The run should be open. Climb over the fence.”

 

Goodbye to a dear friend… On Wednesday, Sept. 7, I along with a few other Seaport and Southbridge residents and other friends and family gathered at Trinity Church on Broadway to say goodbye to a wonderful, charming man. Beresford Ethelbert Sealy, born March 1, 1927, passed away on August 29, at Downtown Hospital. He had only been ill the last several months and the toll it took on him saddened everyone around him. Many knew him as Barry: his Seaport family, his companion of more than 25 years, Dorothy Wadsley who passed away nearly two years ago, her daughter Patricia and her family Tony and Anna Louise Dalo, as well as his many co-workers and business friends.

But to his Brooklyn family and his nephew Keith Oliver, he was always “Uncle Fred.” In Keith’s heartfelt eulogy he talked about the last walk he took with his uncle around Southbridge, sitting on a bench discussing science then heading to the courts where his uncle saw many an old friend one last time.

I knew him as Barry. He was always the consummate gentleman and stylishly dressed, charming and a delight to have a drink with at two of his favorite neighborhood places, The Bridge Cafe and TJ Byrne’s.

His parents came to Brooklyn from Barbados and Barry studied science at City College. He became a city health inspector and then an independent health consultant to some of the city’s finest restaurants. He and Dottie loved to travel and visited many, many countries and continents. Together they lived a full and charmed life.

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