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Susan Miele on the Bronxville Business Beat: Bronxville Is Not Just Any Town PDF Print Email

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By Susan Miele


Oct. 11, 2017:  In the five years I served as executive director of the Bronxville Chamber of Commerce, it was my genuine pleasure to showcase the many distinct businesses that make the Bronxville business district truly special. I left the chamber this past spring, and it's now my pleasure to launch this new monthly column, "The Bronxville Business Beat," covering the business district. Topics and format will vary.

Bronxville is not Anytown, USA. The majority of businesses are independently owned and not found in other towns and villages. The owners make different purchasing decisions and offer a different level of personal service.

Local businesses keep Bronxville's economy vital. The Village of Bronxville generates revenue from sales tax and parking fees, lessening the financial onus on homeowners while allowing municipal services to remain reliably strong.

With that as a backdrop, it's important for everyone to be conscious of how buying decisions affect the local economy, including personal property taxes and home value. Below are some great ways to stoke the business district this Halloween season—while snagging truly great buys and experiences!

Blue Moon Mexican Café is hosting its annual Halloween costume contest. All kids who dine at the restaurant on Tuesday, October 31, will be eligible to win any of three prizes: 1st prize – a $100 toy-store gift card; 2nd prize – a $50 toy-store gift card; 3rd prize – dinner for four at the Moon.

Candy Rox--The name may say it all, since Halloween is synonymous with candy, but Candy Rox also carries gift and décor items. Some standout items: ice-cube trays with gummy eyeballs (yes, this is real!), colorful marshmallow skulls evoking a Day of the Dead look, candy-corn shot glasses, caramel-apple Sugar Babies, and Zombie Bites. Are your kids in on the Squishy craze? Candy Rox has some creepy kinds, like squishable donuts with fake bugs crawling on them. Ick!

Value Drugs offers its annual large selection of holiday décor, candy, window clings, and more. Novelties of this year's stock include new lawn décor, Halloween hair ornaments, and more. The store's Halloween sale runs through October 22.

Womrath Bookshop is teeming with a vast selection of children's Halloween books. Adding to this collection are 100-piece Springbok candy-corn puzzles, hidden-picture books, Beanie Boos, Mad Libs, and other Halloween-themed merchandise.

Mano A Mano is carrying pumpkin chai candles, Mackenzie Childs-painted pumpkins, bejeweled fabric Indian corn, glitzy masquerade masks, and other seasonal dazzlers.

SilverSpoon has those perfect finishing touches to accessorize any costume—from black tutus to spider headbands. Poof, it's an outfit!

The Silk Road has an array of seasonal décor peppered throughout the shop. Ornamental pumpkins in assorted materials, festive dishes, and pumpkin and black-cat characters are ready to add charm to your home décor. My favorite: mini felted wool acorns—grab a bunch and fill up a pumpkin bowl!

Topps Bakery has not only autumnally decorated cookies, cupcakes, and petit fours; the "icing on the cake" is the must-have party goods unlike anything I've seen elsewhere--paper plates shaped like a skeleton's skull, mini spider-web plates, petite paper witch hats, and hexagonal paper plates bearing jack-o'-lanterns and other images that would charm any table.

Papyrus has a motley assortment of Halloween items, including a wall full of greeting cards, zippered pouches labeled "bag of tricks," a great selection of party paper goods, black-cat mugs and glassware, and (my favorite) bags of chocolate-covered cookie-dough bites called "bat poop."

Fabio's Hair Studio will host its 16th annual Halloween party; kids are encouraged to get their hair and makeup done to match the look of their costume. In the setting of the decorated salon, the Fabio's staff will dress up in costume and offer face painting, makeup, hair styling, and temporary hair color for only $5. The event will take place on Friday, October 27, from 3:00 to 6:00 pm.

The above is not at all a comprehensive list—just enough to get the party started! Take a walk or explore your favorite businesses on social media to get up-to-date offerings!

Where to find it:

Blue Moon Mexican Café
7-27 Pondfield Rd
914-337-4000
www.bluemoonmexicancafe.com

Candy Rox
66 Pondfield Rd
914-779-6750
www.candyrox.com 

Fabio's Hair Studio
137 Parkway Rd
914-337-1482
www.fabioshairstudios.com

Mano A Mano
81 Pondfield Rd
914-793-8329
www.facebook.com/MANO-A-MANO-150696944964443/ 

Papyrus
72 Pondfield Rd
914-337-7057
www.papyrusonline.com/stores/ny/bronxville 

SilverSpoon
81 Pondfield Rd
914-771-7645
www.silverspoongifts.com 

Topps Bakery
106 Pondfield Rd
914-337-4258
https://www.facebook.com/toppsbakery/ 

Value Drugs
80 Pondfield Rd
914-337-2520
http://valuedrugs.net/bronxville/ 

Womrath Bookshop
76 Pondfield Rd
914-337-0199
www.womrath.com  

Send me your feedback at CLOAKING .


 
New Shoe Store to Open at 65 Pondfield Road PDF Print Email

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By Erica Martin, Marketing Coordinator, Love MY Shoes


Sep. 27, 2017:  A new shoe store called Love MY Shoes is about to open at 65 Pondfield Road in the middle of the Bronxville business district. The owners say they are a small family company that has been in business since the '90s.

On November 6, 2016, the store, which was located in Larchmont at the time, was involved in a horrible fire that destroyed everything. The owners subsequently decided to move to Bronxville.

The new location has 2,000 square feet of space with shoes for the entire family. Featured are kids', men's, and women's shoe styles. There will also be a large selection of boots--the big trend right now.

Love MY Shoes's goal is to become the go-to place in Bronxville for family shoes. The shoes are fashion forward, simple, and comfortable.

Pictured here:  The location on Pondfield Road where the store Love MY Shoes will open.

Photo courtesy Erica Martin, Marketing Coordinator, Love MY Shoes

 
Downtown Business District Sees Positive Momentum toward Leasing Empty Storefronts PDF Print Email

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By Carol P. Bartold, Senior Reporter                    


Sep. 20, 2017: Despite an uptick in empty storefronts in Bronxville's downtown business district, Mayor Mary Marvin and Jonathan Gordon, president and CEO of Admiral Real Estate Services, are seeing good momentum toward attracting tenants to lease the spaces.

Gordon stated that approximately 6,800 square feet of commercial space is unoccupied in approximately five storefronts in the village.

Admiral Real Estate Services, according to Gordon, has recently signed three leases. One Love Foundation and Love Shoes, from Larchmont, have leased space on Pondfield Road. An herbal apothecary shop will move into the former Pure Mountain Olive Oil shop on Kraft Avenue. In addition, a juice bar is slated to open on Cedar Street in the space vacated by Stipo Optical.

A lease is in negotiation for the former North dress shop on Pondfield Road.

In courting tenants for village properties, Gordon has noticed that interest in commercial and storefront property in Bronxville comes from businesses that deal in “anything that can’t be bought on the Internet.” Marvin concurred, saying, “If people can buy something at midnight on the Internet, it’s very hard for village merchants to compete.”

Both Gordon and Marvin recognize that the village code was written during an era when soft goods retailers formed the backbone of the downtown business district, the very businesses that have been hit hardest with the rise of Internet commerce. “The village code was written in an effort to curtail parking and traffic issues,” Gordon said. “Soft goods stores tend to generate less vehicular traffic.”

Marvin emphasized that in revising the community plan, the village must change to allow for the new reality that service-oriented businesses must be included in the retail mix. “We can no longer ban service business on the first floor,” she said. “Those days are gone.” She added that the trustees are mindful of the need to allow service businesses to open without losing the authenticity and ambience of the downtown business district.

Gordon observed that allowing more service-oriented businesses to open primes the pump for soft goods stores. “It creates a snowball effect,” he said. “We need to get more people into the village to patronize businesses.”

The good news, Marvin said, is that a revitalized retail mix and marketing committee has generated interest in Bronxville. Made up of merchants, commercial property owners, residents, and others, the committee galvanized its attention toward the empty stores and locating viable tenants.

Marvin is grateful for the short-term success in generating positive energy about the village. At the same time, she recognizes that much work lies ahead in addressing such issues as traffic flow, traffic safety, and parking.

Pictured here:  A section of the Pondfield Road business district. 

Photo by A. Warner

 
Chamber Chatter for May 2017 PDF Print Email

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By Nicole Tuck, Executive Director, Bronxville Chamber of Commerce


May 10, 2017:  Welcome New Members 

The Armour Villa Neighborhood Association, located on the west side and 400 families strong, was founded in 1889, and promotes itself as a "traditional community with a contemporary attitude."

Bauman Law Group P.C. is located at 66 Palmer Avenue, Suite 49C. Tim and Carmen Bauman are seasoned litigators with a broad-based practice, including residential and commercial law. 914-337-1700.

The local branch of international HSBC Bank, 74 Pondfield Road, can meet your business and/or personal banking needs. We welcome Patricia Roberts, its new manager. The local branch phone number is 914-779-4400.

Anne Marie Costanzo, the owner of Little Black Dress, shares her passion for food and fitness. Since 2007, she has empowered women on a personal level to focus on taking care of themselves through fitness and wellness and nutrition programs. 212-731-9700.

Co-founders Matt Gorney and Ryan Hart of Maple & Rose share a commitment to cooking elegant food with rustic influences. They provide memorable meals for private events and families. 518-307-6842 or 917-647-1129.

Pondfield Café is a neighborhood tradition, serving homestyle breakfast and lunch. Ken Pugliese and his crew also make homemade dinner every Thursday night (BYOB). 3 Pondfield Road West. 914-337-5221.

Wild Vines & Liquors, 54 Palmer Avenue, has been serving the west side neighborhood for over five years. Ask Benjamin Ramirez about wines from South America and Europe. 914-337-0750.

Happening This Month

Mother's Day is May 14th! Check out some great gift ideas.

  • Visit Topps Bakery or Chantilly Patisserie for those "breakfast-in-bed" treats.  

  • If Mom is into fashion, visit Toney Toni & the GangYum Yum TreeJ.McLaughlin, or Weezie D for the latest trends.

  • Need the perfect gift for Mom? Go to Mano A Mano for a large selection of gift items that Mom will surely love.

  • Fun accessories are available at Kensington Paper or Breezeway. Both stores are located on Kraft Avenue.  

  • How about taking Mom out to a movie at the Bow Tie Cinema or The Picture House, followed by a treat at Haagan-Dazs or Candy Rox.  

  • Say "I love You, Mom, and Thanks for all you do!" with flowers from Mrs. Morgan's Flower Shop or The Flower Shop of Tryforos & Pernice.

  • Mom wants to read the newest bestsellerWomrath Bookshop has a great selection.

  • Jewelry lasts forever! Purchase that very special piece that Mom will love. Stop by La Gravinese or Bronxville Jewelers or see the latest trends from Citrine now showcasing within Silk Road.

  • Need that special gift to be personalized? Stop by Silverspoon and see the many items that can be monogrammed, such as towels, sun hats, nightshirts, and canvas totes. Or check out their fabulous mother-daughter dresses.

  • Want a pretty and protective dress for Mom? Silk Road has a selection of Cabana Life SPF 50 dresses that not only will look great on but will protect Mom's skin from damaging rays. 

  • Mother's Day brunch or dinner is always in good taste! Bronxville has restaurants that will satisfy your Mom's palate. Click here for the listings on the Chamber website.

  • Let Mom's face glow with a facial followed up with the finishing touch of having her brows and makeup done. Visit Maison Rouge.

  • Bronxville Wellness Sanctuary can offer Mom some peace and relaxation. Give Mom a gift certificate by clicking here.

  • How about outdoor yoga for Mom? Reserve Mom a spot at our 2nd Annual Outdoor Yoga Event on Wednesday, May 31. Click here for details. 

Save the Date... 

Bronxville Farmers' Market opening day is Saturday, May 13!

2nd Annual Outdoor Yoga Event--Wednesday, May 31; click here for details and to reserve your spot! 10% of the net proceeds go to the Junior League of Bronxville.

Sidewalk Sale, Friday, June 2, and Saturday, June 3. June 3 includes the spring street fair held on Park Place followed by our kick-off summer concert in the evening. Details coming soon...

 
Clothing Line Founded by Bronxville Native Lauren Thierry Now the Leading Off-Brand on Zappos.com/Adaptive PDF Print Email

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By Staff


May 3, 2017:  A tiny clothing company founded in a spare bedroom in Bronxville is now the leading off-brand on Zappos.com/Adaptive, a new e-commerce site recently launched by retail giant Zappos.

Zappos teamed up with Independence Day Clothing to create an "adaptive" category on Zappos's $1.2 billion shoe and apparel website.  

The partnership came from humble, Bronxville-based beginnings.

Four years ago, Bronxville native Lauren (Trownsell) Thierry was overseeing her son with autism, Liam, get dressed--a daily necessity, as Liam lacks the motor planning and manual dexterity to zip, button, or snap, let alone tie a shoelace. He barely had his underwear on one morning in 2013 when his little yellow school bus pulled into their driveway on Courseview Road.

"Utter panic," is how Lauren described what would be a momentary "timing snafu" in any other household. "If Liam can't get dressed by himself on time, that bus pulls away, I'm left standing next to a half-dressed kid and a late arrival to work."

So Lauren broke the "rules" of letting Liam practice dressing at his own pace. She tossed a shirt over his head, jammed his feet into shoes, and whisked him into the waiting bus.

Over a lunch break that day, Lauren sat down and wrote a 20-page business plan to stop that breathless, recurring scenario for some five million autism mothers, as well as 45 million moms who run similar obstacle courses with their kids with other disabilities, each morning. The plan called for a fashion line that fits front/back/reversible with no buttons, no zippers, no scratchy tags--a foolproof way to dress for those who otherwise cannot easily dress themselves.

What began as a novel idea and a homegrown website in 2013 caught the attention of mega-seller Zappos in early 2016.

Lauren knew she had a concept, but how to execute? "Simple," said Lauren. "You call all your Bronxville friends and say, 'Help.'"

Help was certainly needed. By her own admission, Lauren has "no fashion sense, no fashion knowledge. I just know what needs to work for this population."

Luckily, Bronxvillians Elizabeth Ackerman and Anja Cooney had fashion sense to spare--and share.

Elizabeth stressed good fabrics, like those from her own line, Elizabeth Ackerman New York. She became ID's guru of stretchable, easy-care fabrics, borrowing from her own classic designs and "adapting" them for the disabilities market with magnets, elastic, and breakaway Velcro. Anja added edgy components to keep the line from skewing "too preppy."

Jay Ackerman picked up his camera and shot the line, featuring some models with special needs and some Bronxville teens with already-impressive modeling and acting resumes--Arielle Rothman, Andrea Shepherd, Alexa Shepherd, Josh Geiling, and George Cooney. "They just had to be up for the shoot and to demonstrate what makes Independence Day Clothing unique," said Ackerman.  

Armed with samples and models, the ID Clothing project was marketed by another Bronxville couple--former BBDO ad executives Janet Lyons and Dennis Berger. "They came up with a plan that showed the line's potential to serve the disability market in a fun way--as well as the mainstream crossover potential. Jeff Cooney shot a big-budget video of the line, and--bam!--Zappos was sold on the idea," said Lauren.

"Zappos is our big shot to prove that the disabilities demographic is viable, marketable, and represents the inclusion and acceptance so many of us have fought so hard for," said Lauren. So hit Zappos.com/Adaptive and check out the merchandise. "Let's show the big boys Bronxville can play in their sandbox." 

Pictured here:  Lauren Thierry with son Liam.

Photo by Jeff Matsler

 
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