The Bronx Green Machine Goes 'Above and Beyond'

The sweet smell of basil drifted down the hallways of Discovery High School in late May. Parents, teachers, and neighbors anxiously chased the scent down to classroom 279, where Steven Ritz and his science classes hosted a Farmers Market and Edible Plant Sale. At the event, guests were not only able to purchase a selection of fresh veggies, plants, and flowers, but also learn about the unique science curriculum Ritz has created. “This is my portable science lab,” Ritz explained. “Unlike software that gets outdated and textbooks which are expensive; this room is a constant learning resource.” Ritz says he started bringing plants into the classroom in order to give his students a hands on lesson.

West Farms Residents Get Free Home Makeovers

Editor’s Note: This article was first published in the June edition of the Tremont Tribune, out now.Volunteers from Rebuilding Together NYC repair homes on Bronx Park Avenue and East 178th Street, part of the nonprofit’s “Neighborhood Rebuilding Day.” (Photo by F.G. Pinto)By FAUSTO GIOVANNY PINTOThey came in the early morning in droves brandishing tool belts, saws and a dumpster. Before most people were up they were busy hammering, painting, and repairing in an all-day extreme remodeling session.The volunteer handymen and women came to be part of Rebuilding Together NYC’s annual Neighborhood Rebuilding day, in which local homeowners received repairs at no cost. This was the first time the event was held in the Bronx.“We weren’t sure what we were getting into, but it’s exciting, it’s so much fun,” said Cristin McComell, 28, a service manager at Wells Fargo, as she painted a fresh coat of white paint on an old wall. Originally from California, McComell heard about the program through a community service leader at Wells Fargo.The event was held on East178th Street between Morris Park Avenue and Bronx Park Avenue. Rebuilding Together NYC sponsored the event in conjunction with Shawmut Design and Construction, Wells Fargo, and State Farm.

Bronx News Roundup, June 16

Weather: Warm and sunny today, in the high 70s/low 80s. Chance of rain late tonight and into tomorrow morning.Story of the Day: Mount Hope Dad Gets a New KidneyWe’ll start off today’s roundup with a feel-good piece in honor of Father’s Day this weekend. New York Daily News’ Patrice O’Shaughnessy brings us the story of Bronx dad Jameak Lee, who after a decade of illness, dialysis and disappointment, successfully underwent a kidney transplant this winter. This will be the first Father’s Day in his 12-year-old son Justin’s life that Lee will feel well enough to celebrate.Speaking of transplants: Bronx’s own St. Barnabas Hospital will be honored by the New York Organ Donor Network next week for being the top organ donor hospital in the greater New York metropolitan area.