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Action to save the Charas/El Bohio Community Center at P.S. 64!

Click Here to visit and join the free Save Charas YAHOO! Club. Get the latest news and info, share thoughts and memories, and join in plans for the future!

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For a reverse history of updates since June 12, 2000 scroll down and read.

I first found out about Charas when the local chapter of the Society for Creatice Anachronism had fighter practices in one of their gyms. A few years later I was in their space rehearsing with Gorilla Rep, Faux Real theater Co., Two Texans Theater Co., and an independent film maker. I was hoping to have some stage combat workshops there this year. Now things are looking bleak.

Charas/El Bohio was started in 1979 when local activists ran the drug dealers etc. out of the abandonned public school building on East 9th Street between avenues B and C. they repaired and rebuilt the place and opened it up to community groups and artists for meetings, rehearsals, studio space, performances, movies, AA meetings, art shows, children's programs, and more. It is the most affordable space in Manhattan. They had a month-to month deal with the city whereby they would fix up the place and they could rent it from the city. This has meant that the neighboorhood and local artists have had a valuable, affordable community center for two decades. Something made out of nothing.

I am beginning to understand how it is the natural way of things to live and then die, for thing to change. However, in this instance, there is no pressing reason for this change to take place, and plenty of reason for it not to. In a nutshell, the Giuliani administration sold the building that houses Charas/El Bohio to a private developer. This developer eventually succeeded in evicting Charas/El Bohio. Charas/El Bohio did not want this. The people who live in the neighborhood did not want this. The people who use space in the building did not want this. The community board did not want this. The Borough President did not want this. The Manhattan delegation to the City Council did not want this. The City Council Speaker did not want this. The State Senator did not want this. The local Congressperson did not want his. It seems the only person who wanted Charas/El Bohio out is Greg Singer, and the person who wanted the building sold in the first place was the same person with the most power to stop it, the Mayor, Rudolph Giuliani.

Needless to say, this procedure has been fought every step of the way, even beyond the death of Charas/El Bohio's leader, Armando Perez.

Posted 10/15/06 In their June 14-20 issue The Village Voice ran a huge article by Sarah Ferguson about the history and potential fate of the P.S. 64 building. The article talks about the current stalemate in which Greg Singer is fighting for the opportunity to make money off of the property and various foprces in the city and the community are fighting to stop him and perhaps get the property back to Charas/El Bohio. You can find that article here. There is also a photo gallery of pictures of P.S. 64 with captions by the writer. The following issue printed two letters, one from Singer and another from someone who supported Singer.

Posted 8/27/05 From a message from Susan Howard:

Gregg Singer Hearing at Board of Standards and Appeals:
August 16, 2005 Gregg Singer, and his lawyer were completely overwhelmed at this hearing. Both the Commissioners of the BSA, and the Department of Buildings counsel completely squashed any hope that Gregg Singer could ever get approval for a building or demo permit, citing his lack of institutional support from any college or university. The Board then closed the hearing and will reconvene on October 18, 2005 with their decision.

Chabad of Gramercy Park:

Rabbi Naftali received many calls, (some pretty nasty he said). In a long discussion, he said that he felt for Gregg and that we should allow him to have his dorm. In return he could mediate for some community space in the building. I said sorry, the community is completely opposed to a dorm. He also said he did not want to do battle with the community, and that the Chabah had only been interested in programmatic space, not in a dormitory.

p.s. there is currently work being done inside the building, and day laborers can be seen going in, in the mornings. The 4th floors windows are completely covered. We do know that there are pigeons, asbestos and lead on the fourth floor and that Singer has approval for removal of interior non load bearing walls and plumbing fixtures.

Important!

Armando Perez Community Center BRIEF HISTORY & UPDATE

*1979
Armando Perez, Chino Garcia, Roberto Nazario, and others founded CHARAS / El Bohio in the abandoned P.S. 64 at 605 E. 9th Street.

* Once a notorious drug den, the Latino youth reclaimed the building and created CHARAS / El Bohio Cultural & Community Center

* For over 22 years, the cultural center was a mecca for the arts and community service, providing very low cost or free art, rehearsal, performance and community space, workshops, training's, and after school programs.

* 1998
Despite widespread community and political opposition, the Giuliani Administration sold the community center at public auction to condo developer Gregg Singer.

* 1999
Armando Perez, beloved Activist, District Leader, Community Board member, and Artistic Director of CHARAS / El Bohio was murdered in Queens.

* 2001
After a 3 year court battle, during which a jury found unanimously that Gregg Singer did not plan to use the building for community use, the cultural center was evicted.

* 2004
Gregg Singer filed plans for a 19 story dormitory, although no college or university is interested, and the New York State dormitory authority will not fund the project.

* Council member Margarita Lopez convenes a Town Hall and creates committees to come up with an alternative plan and proposal for the once vibrant center.

* The Armando Perez Structure Committee is formed and the Mission and Goals for the Armando Perez Community Center are written and voted in at a Town Hall Meeting. (see mission and goals below)

*2005
Founders of the East Village Community Coalition, (EVCC) resign from the APCC Structure Committee, stating a difference in their mission and goals for the building.

WHAT IS EVCC'S PLAN FOR THE FORMER CHARAS / El Bohio, P.S. 64?

* It appears that the founders of the East Village Community Coalition's plan for the building includes an Arts High School, and Wingspan Arts Center for children, whose entrance requirements and costs are out of the reach of the majority of residents on the Lower East Side.

* Why?
Arts High Schools, like LaGuradia School for the Performing Arts, are highly competitive, and require a portfolio and audition as part of the entrance examination. Wingspan Arts Center programs range from $1500 - $2400 a session, too expensive for low and moderate income students, without some form of scholarship.
Wingspan also rents theater space, when not being used by the school, at market rate, pricing out most emerging actors and theater companies.

WHAT IS THE ARMANDO PEREZ COMMUNITY CENTER STRUCTURE COMMITTEE'S PLAN?

* The APCC's plan for the building is to real create a Real Community Center, accessible to everyone in our community, honoring the mission and goals of the former CHARAS / El Bohio and in honor of co-founder and community leader Armando Perez. (see mission and goals below)

WHAT CAN YOU DO TO HELP?

Sign on to the APCC Structure Committee's mission and goals by emailing APCCstructure@yahoo.com

Join the Armando Perez Structure Committee and support our efforts to make the former CHARAS / El Bohio a real community center.

Call us at 212-741-7148 and leave your contact information.

SPREAD THE WORD!

MISSION AND GOALS OF THE ARMANDO PEREZ COMMUNITY CENTER

Armando Perez Community Center, (APCC) is dedicated to strengthening and empowering politically disenfranchised people who have been denied economic opportunity and excluded from having access to cultural and community services and who are:

.primarily Lower East Side residents

.from diverse cultural backgrounds

.of low and moderate income

.from diverse age groups, with emphasis on youth & seniors

.local artists and art groups

.community based not for profits

APCC is a strong advocate for improving education, housing, community development, social services, economic, and cultural diversity.

APCC will be a highly visible social gathering place and community cultural home on the Lower East Side which will be a resource for the community's artistic, economic, educational and spiritual growth.

APCC will honor, advocate for, empower, celebrate and encourage an appreciation of our diverse cultures

GOALS OF THE ORGANIZATION

1. To provide an ongoing artistic and cultural center for the people of the Lower East Side at affordable cost. The center will be available to individuals and not-for-profit groups, with a special emphasis on its use for those whose members are in the lower and moderate income brackets.

2. To provide space for a variety of community services and community based not for profit organizations for both long term as well as short-term usage.

3. To provide space in the Lower East Side (Loisaida), for the community and the greater N.Y. area, where a variety of artists, from variety of disciplines, can work at their art, rehearse, store their materials, and ultimately present their work at the center. With this understanding, artists who rent space at APCC agree to contribute some portion of their time, talent, services, or work for the benefit of community residents, primarily in the form of classes, workshops, presentations and exhibits.

4. To provide employment training and career development assistance for community members interested in pursuing the arts or art management skills, computer, and other areas available for training and future employment.

5. To establish and maintain a strong open relationship with the people of the Lower East Side Community.

6. To reflect in its actions and operations, a clear philosophical and economic perspective aligned with the values and struggles of the community.

7. To encourage and maintain a serious artistic thrust and a high level of professional artistry among tenant members, especially in the development of grassroots talent in the community.

8. To develop and maintain programs that will assure a high level of participation by people with disabilities, at risk youth and senior members of the community.

9. To develop and maintain a Armando Perez Community Center building, Capitol Program.

10. To promote a strong sense of fellowship, networking, and harmonious cooperation among tenants, clients, and the community which it serves.

11. To serve the children and teenagers of Loisaida on an ongoing basis, and to develop mechanisms that assure that this emphasis will be maintained.

12. APCC will strive in its programs and activities to fulfill the unmet needs of the community it serves.

Posted 12/9/04

We are just been informed from a very good source that the Landmarks Preservation Commission is not going to Landmark CHARAS/ El Bohio former P.S.64.!
Stay tuned for Next Steps

---- The press conference and rally was well attended. NY1, Daily News, WBAI, WNYC (those are the ones I am sure of) were there. There was a small blurb in Daily News 12/8 (Singer's unhappy birthday!)

The Deputy Mayor's office received many many phone calls...thanks to you, and I hope that our elected officials follow up with the Mayors Office.

We have a call in to legal but everyone should keep their eyes of the building.

----- (in light of the news, this may be postponed but will most probably turn into an another kind of meeting)

Please try and make it!

2nd Charas Townhall meeting scheduled for

When:December 15, 2004
6:30pm
Where:The NEW P.S. 64
600 E. 6th Street
(at Ave. B /6th st. entrance)

Council member Margarita Lopez letter announcing the meeting - notes that this meeting is being called to establish an Advisory Board that will provide recommendations about the future of P.S.64 The letter also states that People will "break off into working groups to design a clear and focused plan, so that we may achieve our goals"

Charas supporters could try their best to attend this meeting and find work within working groups to ensure that our community center doesnt turn into a co-op / lincoln center.

PLEASE come out to this meeting and join a working group.

Posted 12/6/04

Dear old friends & allies!

I need your help in posting and forwarding this message!
This is an extremely important event and I hope you can take the morning off and come out if at all possible. Gregg Singer is now trying desperately to get plans approved to demolish at least the back of CHARAS, to limit possible land marking and push his plans for a 19 story dorm. He could get approval as early as next week!

Though he cannot get dormitory authority bonds to finance the project, and has NO tenants, the push to Landmark the building seems to have backed him into a corner.

So we're holding a emergency press conference and rally this coming Tuesday and we need EVERYONE to Come out and ask Mayor Bloomberg to:

1. Give us back CHARAS for Xmas (The Giuliani Grinch will make an appearance too.)
2. Find Singer in DEFAULT of the conditions of sale, since he has not and cannot develop the building as a community facility.
3. Landmark it!

What: EMERGENCY PRESS CONFERENCE AND RALLY CITY HALL STEPS
When: Tuesday, December 7 10:30am
Where: City Hall Steps

With: Council member Margarita Lopez & more...

Needed: Snappy Xmas songs for Charas
12 days of Christmas? to sing along
Jiggle bells
SANTAS!
xsusan

You can see a couple of articles about recent plans and protests regarding Charas in The Villager.com (Volume 74, Number 20 | September 22 - 28 , 2004) and the Village Voice (June 1st, 2004)

Posted 10/8/04

It's been 3 years and 4 mortgages, since Gregg Singer finally got the keys to CHARAS. 3 years without tenants, without rent, without support, and without a plan for our community facility.
It's time we asked that CHARAS be returned!
xsusan

VIVA CHARAS!

TOWN HALL MEETING
hosted by Councilwoman Margarita López

Since the eviction of CHARAS / El Bohio Cultural & Community Center by developer Gregg Singer in December of 2001, the building that housed CHARAS, former P.S. 64 at 605 E. 9th Street has sat dark & empty. Join us in demanding that our Community Center be returned to us, along with the organizations, programs and artists that once thrived there.

What: Town Hall Meeting

When: Tuesday, October 12, 2004
6:30pm - 8:30pm

Where: Public School 34 - (12th St. & Ave. D)

Proposed Agenda by Council member Lopez
* History of CHARAS
* Status Report: Dept. of Buildings and Landmarking
* PUBLIC FORUM

Co-Sponsored by:
Congress Member Nydia Velázquez, State Senator Martin Connor, Assemblyman Steve Sanders, and District Leaders Rosie Mendez & Anthony Feliciano

Posted 5/2/04

Go to this link to see story with photo http://www.thevillager.com/villager_52/closureas2nd.html ------------------------------------------------------------------------The Villager, Volume 73, Number 52 | April 28 - May 4, 2004 Second suspect pleads guilty in Armando Perez killing

By Sarah Ferguson

"After five frustrating years of police investigations and legal proceedings, the murder case of Lower East Side community activist and Democratic district leader Armando Perez was finally brought to a close on Tuesday when the second of his accused killers pled guilty to savagely beating Perez to death outside Perez's wife's apartment complex in Long Island City, Queens.

"Shaguye Colbert, 29, of Newark, N.J., agreed to plead guilty to manslaughter in the first degree and to waive his right to trial in exchange for a 10-year sentence, two years of which he has already served.

"But Colbert, whose nickname is "Country," showed little remorse for the death of Perez, who was co-founder and creative director of CHARAS/El Bohio, the former Latino community arts center on E. Ninth St. Dressed in a gray sweatsuit with his hands cuffed behind his back, Colbert appeared emotionless before the court, barely turning to acknowledge Perez' wife, Marianne, and the half dozen supporters, including Lower East Side Councilmember Margarita Lopez, who turned out for the proceeding to ensure that justice was served...."

Posted 5/2/04: Meeting next week re: Greg's plans to demolish the building

Dear friends

The Save Charas Committee, a network of thousands of supporters, which has fought for over 6 years to Save Charas/El Bohio Cultural and Community Center from eviction and destruction, will meet next week to organize a response to Singer's new plans to demolish the building that housed Charas/El Bohio, former P.S. 64, to build a 23 story NYU dormitory/youth hostel.

Since the eviction of Charas/El Bohio in December of 2001, the Save Charas Committee has remained vigilant in efforts to get our community center back, and ensure that new owner Gregg Singer does not succeed in his plans to turn our public space into his private profit.

This will be our first meeting since the 7 activists arrested during the eviction of Charas were acquitted of all charges in June of 2003. This first meeting will be small, but we will plan a community meeting to follow.

WHAT YOU CAN DO TO HELP! - SPEAK OUT! - MAKE THAT CALL!
Organize & come to the next Community Board 3 Housing Committee Meeting
Thursday, May 13, 2004
6:30pm
333 Bowery (Kenton Hall- bet. 2nd-3rd Streets) Ground Floor

SINGER'S NEW PROJECT IS ON THE AGENDA - and though there is little chance that Community Board 3 would support this project, we need to let Singer, NYU and the National Development Council know: We don't need another dormitory, we need a community center for use by the community. My preference would be:
The Armando Perez Cultural & Community Center.

Call Off Gregg Singer's New Plans for CHARAS!

Contact: Dan Marsh
National Development Council
Tel: 212-682-1106
Fax: 212-573-6118
e-mail: NDCCVG@ndc-online.org

IF YOU HAVEN'T GOTTEN THROUGH,
keep trying...

In the coming weeks we plan to meet with elected officials, supporters and legal advisers to map out a plan. As always, we will keep you posted. xsusan

Background:

Gregg Singer, the developer who brought and evicted Charas/El Bohio Cultural & Community Center in December of 2001, is back with a new plan, a new Public Relations firm, Patricia Lynch Associates, and a new front group, the National Development Council, or NDC. Singer now wants to demolish the building that housed CHARAS/El Bohio, former P.S. 64 at 605 E. 9th Street, to build a 23 story dormitory. "University House - a consortium of universities". Billed as single & double room dorms, with 220 suites and 811 beds it smells more like his banana bungalow youth hostel caper circa 1999.

Let National Development Council know...
We Don't Need another NYU Dorm..
WE NEED A CULTURAL & COMMUNITY CENTER!

Everyone is encouraged to call and let them know how you feel about their plans.
Contact: Dan Marsh
National Development Council
Tel: 212-682-1106
Fax: 212-573-6118

e-mail: NDCCVG@ndc-online.org

-It may be just a coincidence, but the Chairman of the Board of Directors of NDC is Samuel S. Beard and Ronald P.and Marsha Y. Beard currently hold a 1.5 million dollar 2nd Mortgage on the property...

for more info/more contact go to:
www.University-house.org
www.nationaldevelopmentcouncl.org
www.thevillager.com
www.singerfinancialcorp.com/University/project_info.html

-Background - CHARAS/ El Bohio

CHARAS/El Bohio Cultural & Community Center was and is a beloved multi-cultural institution on Manhattan's Lower East Side. Created in 1965, CHARAS took its name from the initials of its six Latino founders, including Chino Garcia, Armando Perez and Roberto Nazario. In 1978, CHARAS and Adopt a Building rescued the abandoned former Public School 64 at 605 E. 9th Street and created CHARAS/El Bohio Cultural and Community Center.

For over 20 years, CHARAS offered free and affordable classes and after-school programs as well as rehearsal, studio, performance and meeting space for arts and community groups.

In 1998, despite overwhelming opposition, former mayor Giuliani sent the building that housed CHARAS to public auction along with several community gardens. During the auction 10,000 crickets were released in the auditorium of 1 Police Plaza and supporters, dressed as developers, bid generously on gardens and a community center they could not afford, but in the end, the community gardens were sold and CHARAS was bought by Gregg, "Greedy Gregg" Singer. Though the building was restricted for Community Use in 1982, Singer began a 3 year campaign to evict the arts and social organizations housed in CHARAS/ El Bohio, and in December of 2001, CHARAS was finally evicted. The building has stood vacant ever since.

The fight to SAVE CHARAS continues and will not stop until the facility is returned to the community for real community use.

Posted 4/18/04

Everyone's help is needed to Call Off Gregg Singer's New Plans for CHARAS!

CALL FOR MONDAY APRIL 19, 2004
Contact: Dan Marsh
National Development Council
Tel: 212-682-1106
Fax: 212-573-6118
e-mail: NDCCVG@ndc-online.org

Gregg Singer, the developer who brought and evicted Charas/El Bohio Cultural & Community Center in December of 2001, is back with a new plan, a new Public Relations firm, Patricia Lynch Associates, and a new front group, the National Development Council, or NDC. Singer now wants to demolish the building that housed CHARAS/El Bohio, former P.S. 64 at 605 E. 9th Street, to build a 23 story dormitory. "University House - a consortium of universities". Billed as single & double room dorms, with 220 suites and 811 beds it smells more like his banana bungalow youth hostel caper circa 1999.

Let National Development Council know...
We Don't Need another NYU Dorm..
WE NEED A CULTURAL & COMMUNITY CENTER!

Everyone is encouraged to start calling MONDAY, APRIL 19 and let them know how you feel about their plans.
Contact: Dan Marsh
National Development Council
Tel: 212-682-1106
Fax: 212-573-6118

e-mail: NDCCVG@ndc-online.org

-It may be just a coincidence, but the Chairman of the Board of Directors of NDC is Samuel S. Beard and Ronald P.and Marsha Y. Beard currently hold a 1.5 million dollar 2nd Mortgage on the property...

for more info/more contact go to:
www.University-house.org
www.nationaldevelopmentcouncl.org
www.thevillager.com
www.singerfinancialcorp.com/University/project_info.html

-Background - CHARAS/ El Bohio

CHARAS/El Bohio Cultural & Community Center was and is a beloved multi-cultural institution on Manhattan's Lower East Side. Created in 1965, CHARAS took its name from the initials of its six Latino founders, including Chino Garcia, Armando Perez and Roberto Nazario. In 1978, CHARAS and Adopt a Building rescued the abandoned former Public School 64 at 605 E. 9th Street and created CHARAS/El Bohio Cultural and Community Center.

For over 20 years, CHARAS offered free and affordable classes and after-school programs as well as rehearsal, studio, performance and meeting space for arts and community groups.

In 1998, despite overwhelming opposition, former mayor Giuliani sent the building that housed CHARAS to public auction along with several community gardens. During the auction 10,000 crickets were released in the auditorium of 1 Police Plaza and supporters, dressed as developers, bid generously on gardens and a community center they could not afford, but in the end, the community gardens were sold and CHARAS was bought by Gregg, "Greedy Gregg" Singer. Though the building was restricted for Community Use in 1982, Singer began a 3 year campaign to evict the arts and social organizations housed in CHARAS/ El Bohio, and in December of 2001, CHARAS was finally evicted. The building has stood vacant ever since.

The fight to SAVE CHARAS continues and will not stop until the facility is returned to the community for real community use.

At Last! More news 4/18/04

Dear friends of Armando Perez:

This Monday, April 19, 2004 maybe the last court date in the murder case of Armando Perez, beloved Artistic Director of CHARAS/El Bohio Cultural & Community Center Community Activist, District Leader and member of Community Board 3.

On Monday, the Judge is set to rule on a motion to reduce the top charge against Suguy Colbert, being held in Armando's murder. The charge may very well be reduced from Depraved Indifference to Manslaughter 1. If the charges are reduced, Colbert will probably take a plea. If not, trial preparations will begin.

Everyone is encouraged to come to the Queens County Court House
Monday, April 19, 2004 9:30 - sharp
3rd Floor - CAP -C Judge Hanophy

Directions: Some of us will leave from the F stop at
1st Ave.& Houston St.at 8:00am, and we'll take the train at 8:15am -
F train to Union Turnpike
walk 3 blocks north to the courthouse
get there by 9:00am to get through the metal detectors by 9:30

New Update 1/31/03: CALL FOR CHARAS 7 TRIAL SUPPORT
FEBRUARY 3, 1PM / - Monday Jan. 27th, 9am anti-war protest: Isaiah Wall 43rd & 1st Ave.

DEAR FRIENDS:

THE 7 ACTIVISTS ARRESTED DURING THE EVICTION OF CHARAS COMMUNITY CENTER ARE STILL IN COURT AND ARE NOW GOING TO TRIAL. THE CITY HAS ADDED NEW CHARGES AND IS DETERMINED TO PROSECUTE THEM FOR PROTESTING THE EVICTION.

WE NEED SUPPORT AT THE TRIAL - WHICH COULD BEGIN THE AFTERNOON OF MONDAY FEBRUARY 3 OR THE MORNING OF TUESDAY FEBRUARY 4. PLEASE COME DOWN IF YOU CAN AND SUPPORT THE CHARAS 7. VIVA!

DATE: Monday, February 3 and Tuesday, February 4
TIME: Februay 3, 1pm - .....February 4, 10am-
(court room will be posted)
PLACE: 100 Center Street, Criminal Court - main entrance
WHY: Gather for Trial Support for CHARAS 7

It's been a year since the eviction of CHARAS/El Bohio Community Center, and now the 7 activists arrested for trying to hold a public demonstration against the eviction, are going to trial.

Orginally charged with resisting arrest, obstruction of governmental administration and disorderly conduct, the City has now moved to add new charges of criminal tresspass and criminal tresspass in the 3rd degree. These new charges could set a dangerous precedent for tenant evictions. We are asking everyone to come to Criminal Court at 1pm on Februay 3, to support the trial and bring attention to the status of CHARAS/El Bohio. A treasured Community Resource, Now, 1 year later, still a dark and empty shell. The Developer, Gregg Singer, still has no plans and no tenants. He has continued to sit on the property in hopes the neighborhood will forget.......

Please come and stay for the trial, we will post any updates on February 3.

Update 3/18/02: Charas building for Lease!

The Singer Financial Corp has put the building up for lease, according to their website, saying it "is ideal for schools, universities, dormitories, medical offices, hospital and related facilities, non-profit institutions with or without sleeping accommodations." you can see the listing on the Singer Corp. website.

There is also an article about this on indymedia.org with an opportunity to post comments.

New update 2/28/02: Charas/El Bohio Evicted!

Yes, the heavillly armed, ready-for-anything NYC police carried out their orders and evicted the community center from the building it had rehabilitated and occupied since 1979.
Click here to go to the Charas/ElBohio website and read all about it!

This Update was Posted 12/16/01

EVICTION NOTICE SERVED!

Hi all, it seems the sheriff got to Charas this morning at 9am with a 72 hour notice of eviction. The lawyers assure me its a 6 day notice by law which would be December 24th. But the face of the notice says 72 hours and we have to count on the sheriff and the force showing up Monday morning. I am losing my computer in about 15 minutes as council member Lopez is picking it up (it was a loaner). We will try to find another ASAP. But as of right now we are calling a mass demo for Monday morning December 17th. 7am. at Charas. We do have a court date Tuesday morning 9:30am at 111 center street. Saralee Evans court room, but Singer is trying to evict us before we get there. the hotline will remain open 982-9446 and we are planning a meeting, so call in if you're interested. xs

This Update was Posted 12/10/01

Gregg Singer painters made another early morning visit to CHARAS 12/11. The latest beautiful murals have been whitewashed yet again. This is always a blow to me, experiencing his cruelty first hand. He's coming to CHARAS this morning, supposedly with engineers and contractors. Come by if you can. 10:30am call for an 11:00am visit. xs

This Update was Posted 12/10/01

Gregg Singer's coming to CHARAS tomorrow morning. Tuesday, 12/11. Please come if you can for an instant demo. Its a 10:30am call for an 11:00am visit. We have lots of drums and bells thanks to rts, so come join in the holiday spirit. (We dont think he will try anything illegal tomorrow, like another phony eviction, but you never know what he's capable of.) Stop by if you can. xs

This Update was Posted 12/9/01

Hi all, please come to the demo today. The rumors are flying: from massive demos to armed resistance, but we're still here, come out today and plan to stay... xs

-forwarded message-

Hey everyone.

The pertinent info is below. But first, a plea:

All of us use charas. Who among us hasn't attended a meeting or party there, made friends there, learnedsomething there? Who among us hasn't, in one way or another, big or small, MADE A DIFFERENCE IN THE WORLD AROUND US there?

Organizing, art-making, learning-- all of those things take time and effort-- and space. Charas has been that space. That space must continue.

Charas/El bohio needs us. 12/12 is the last day of the stay. After that, Singer can apply for Charas's eviction.

Come rock the house with us Sunday. Charas isn't going anywhere without a fight. On Sunday, that fight will be REALLY FUN.

love, kate

****

CARNIVAL FOR CHARAS SUNDAY, 12.9!

PERFORM! BRING STILTS! BRING INSTRUMENTS! COME MAKE NOISE, and COME MAKE A SPECTACLE!

Most importantly? COME DANCE!

2 p.m. Gathering at St. Mark’s Church on 2nd Avenue & 10th Street 3 p.m.
Carnival at CHARAS/El Bohio on East 9th Street between Avenues B & C

Backed by DJs and a heart-stopping sound system, a rag-tag group of activists, artists, anarchists, newcomers and old-time Lower East Siders will take to the streets, partying and protesting, to SAVE CHARAS!

A gathering at St. Mark’s Church on 2nd Avenue and 10th Street will precede the Carnival at 2 p.m. Following the Carnival at 7:30 p.m., Obie-award-winner Reverend Billy will perform a full show at Charas.

Firebreathers, strippers (both male and female), jugglers, stilt walkers, ravers and vagabonds bearing instruments and noisemakers plan to make a strong showing. Moreover, there are rumors that circus animals will attend and feats of great daring will be executed. One youthful stripper said enthusiastically, "We’ll take off our clothes until Charas is safe!"

This Update was Posted 12/1/01

Hi all, we had a small Charas meeting last night, so we need help in getting the word out for Monday's vigil/Dec. 9th demo. If you can help, posters can be picked up at Charas on the main table by front doors (come by at 7pm for the art opening in the gallery). If you can help phone bank Sat. or Sun. please reply or call 982-9446.xs

Candlelight Vigil
City Hall East Plaza (facing Bklyn Bridge)
Monday, December 3rd 5pm - 8pm
Rev. Julio Torres from St. Marks Church
& Rev. Billy will give blessings
bring candles or flashlights

This Update was Posted 11/27/01

Hi all: dont forget, dont delay!

Community Meeting Tonight: Thursday, November 29th 6:30pm at Charas
Candlelight Vigil: Monday, December 3, City Hall East Plaza (facing Bklyn bridge) 5-10pm
This is a somber vigil, so please just bring your candles, flashlights, and prayers.(Charas will bring hot cider and candles) xs

* if you havent had time to make a call to Singer's new leasing agent/consultant, please take a few minutes... ...
Robert M. Reich 718-796-4386
6005 Independence Ave. #2 Riverdale NY 10471

This Update was Posted 11/14/01

Attention all Charas Supporters:

Greedy Gregg came to tour CHARAS today with 12 contractors and his new leasing agent, Robert M. Reich (Although wishing to remain anonymous, Mr. Reich's identity was revealed through the crack detective work of Charas P.I.!?). Reich, who told protestors he marched with 'King' and 'Chavez' is now marching with Gregg Singer. I guess times are a changin for Reich. Charas supporters are encouraged to call Mr. Reich and tell him how important Charas is to our community and urge him to back out.

Robert M. Reich
Tel: 718-796-4386
6005 Independence Ave.
Riverdale, NY 10471
Business Names: Dover Consultants, Dover Facilities, TRS Consulting

This Update was Posted 11/14/01

Singer is back tomorrow! November 15th.
When: Thursday, - 10:00 am -(9:30am call)
Where: CHARAS Community Center
605 East 9th Street
Why:
Singer will be back again tomorrow for another tour. So please come by and let him know we are alive and well, - last visit he wondered where all the protestors were. Also mural alert tomorrow morning, if you're up at six, expect the paint crew to come by before singer does. xs

This Update was Posted 11/7/01

AGAIN! Singer is back at CHARAS today!

When: Thursday, - 12:00 noon -(11:30 call)
Where: CHARAS Community Center
605 East 9th Street
Why:
Just when I thought CHARAS would have Green's support Jan. 1st..Greedy Gregg Singer is probably all a glow because we now have the charitable billionaire mayor to contend with. Singer will be back again tomorrow for another tour. So please come by and let his clients know we are alive and well, - a community center, not a vacant building. xs

This Update was posted 10/25/01

AGAIN! Singer's back tomorrow afternoon
When: Tuesday, October 30th, - 2:00pm -(1:30 if you can)
Where: CHARAS Community Center
605 East 9th Street

Why:
Greedy Gregg Singer will be back tomorrow with more unsuspecting tenants. On his last visit he brought 4 businessmen and snuck out through the 10th street door. Please come if you can tomorrow. GG seems to be trying to come up with a list of interested parties and seems to have a new leasing agent. (last week the new agent told me he had marched with King and Chavez?) and now Singer! wow!. xs

-Great critical mass ride and benefit party Friday night. The place was packed and the vibe was great. Everyone seemed to really enjoy it and we made about $3000. for legal(mostly the cost of beer). Thx to all, especially the skeleton crew that worked the night away. maybe we could do it again the end of nov., a battle of the bands kind of thing for everyone that offered to play.xs

This Update was posted 10/25/01

AGAIN!, Singer's on a rampage and back again tomorrow morning
When: Thursday, October 25th, - 10:00am -(9:30 call if you're up)
Where: CHARAS Community Center
605 East 9th Street
Why:
Greedy Gregg Singer will be back tomorrow.
On his last visit Tuesday morning, he actually got physically violent with me (susan). After he left the building (no pun intended) we walked with him and 2 developers to the corner where we all stood as they waited for a cab. when the cab pulled up, i decided to take it and opened the passenger door to get in, Gregg went ballistic, pushing me against the door, forcing his way unto the seat and punching me in the back. Ouch. I filed a report with the 9th precinct and now he's back tomorrow. Do come down if you can. xs

TIMES UP! HALLOWEEN CRITICAL MASS &
CHARAS COMMUNITY CENTER BENEFIT BASH!

Friday, October 26th 7pm- 2am

Join CHARAS COMMUNITY CENTER & THE Halloween Critical Mass to fill the streets and fund the battle to Save CHARAS! Bring your bikes, skates or spooky costumes to:

7pm - meet at Union Square Park for Halloween
Critical Mass Ride (at 14th st.)

8:30pm - ride ends at:
CHARAS/El Bohio Halloween Bash
605 East 9th Street (bet aves B & C)
8:30pm - 2am ($5.00 admit)-all proceeds will go to CHARAS Legal
Defense..

Fright night movie lounge (9pm & midnight)
Political Haunted House (ghoulish hacks & creeps wanted)Dance with DJ Ron Groove with D.J. Dr. Dave Powell and company: cheap drinks &food W/ the Rev. Billy, recycle-a-bike auction, The Hungry March Band, The Radical Cheerleaders, fire breathing demons and more…..
For more info call 212.982.9446 or e-mail: charas@erols.com
212.802.8222 or e-mail: timesup@panix.com

Howl a festival of art & revolution
New York 26 & 27 October 2001

An annual event dedicated to organizing and reinforcing social movements and anti-capitalist mobilizations through the arts, will make its first U.S. appearance in New York.

Proceeds from the events will go to the Direct Action Network coalition that began meeting at Charas/El Bohio community center after the World Trade Center tragedy to discuss and implement anti-war strategies and tactics.

Howl 2001 will run in three cities in partnership with a variety of arts and activist groups from around North America. For the New York dates the organizers of Howl are working in conjunction with Soft Skull and the Direct Action Network.

The Howl Festival will run in two different locations around the Lower East Side

* * *
October 25th
Tonic
107 Norfolk b/t Delancey and Rivington
(F train to Delancey/Essex)

8pm
Admission $10.

Matthew Shipp is a jazz pianist who in the past decade has sculpted a body of work that includes his continuing and highly rewarding contributions to the David S. Ware Quartet, a stint with Roscoe Mitchell's Note Factory, and over thirty albums in an impressive variety of solo, duo, trio and quartet formats, with such collaborators as guitarist Joe Morris,saxophonists Roy Campbell and Rob Brown, trumpeter Roy Campbell, bassist William Parker, violinist Matt Maneri, and drummers Whit Dickey and Susie Ibarra.)

The Loudmouth Collective draw massive crowds in New York with their creative and aptly titled anti-readings.

Dave Deporis is a NYC singer and songwriter. His strong tenor voice mixes traditional folk melodies with modern folk experimentation. Since his arrival in New York his songs have recieved critical acclaim and popular support alike.

October 26th
ABC No Rio
156 Rivington Street (b/t Clinton and Suffolk)
(F train to Delancey/Essex)

7pm
Admission $7.

Seth Tobocman is a political artist whose appears regularly in World War III Illustrated. He is the author of You Don't Have to Fuck People Over to Survive and of a graphic novel entitled War in the Neighborhood published by Autonomedia.

Michael Zezima is the author of Saving Private Power.

Kaie Kellough is a spoken word performer and a native of Canada. His poetry and fiction have appeared in Filling Station, Free Fall, Ash, and Kola. His reviews have appeared in Matrix, articles in Broken Pencil, and NuBeing. Kaie is currently guest contributing editor of the African American Review.

Ian Ferrier is one of the core poet / performers in the North American spoken word and performance poetry scene. His current focus is performing his work--often with jazz accompaniment--and presenting the works of other poets, both English and French, on radio and CD. His most recent works appear on Exploding Head Man, the new CD from Planete Rebelle Press, and Wired on Words.

Ricanstruction have been described as part Bad Brains, part Rage Against the Machine. This Lower East Side band calls their music a funeral dirge for colonialism, imperialism, capitalism, racism, sexism, militarism, and fascism.

* * *

This update was posted 10/16/01

CRITICAL MASS RIDE & CHARAS BENEFIT HALLOWEEN PARTY

FRIDAY, OCTOBER 26th 7pm - 2am

Join the Critical Mass Halloween Ride and end up at Charas for a Halloween Bash Benefit Party

-CRITICAL MASS HALLOWEEN RIDE will meet at Union Square Park @ 7pm
(spooky costumes/fire breathers encouraged)

CHARAS HALLOWEEN PARTY 8:30 - 2am
$5.00 at the door (all proceeds will go to Charas legal defense fund)
Food, cheap drinks, D.J.'s, Bands, Fright Night Movie Lounge, Political Haunted House (ghouls, hacks & creeps wanted) w/Rev. Billy, Radical Cheerleaders, Fire Breathers.....

This update was posted 10/16/01

Please come to an instant demo for CHARAS - Tomorrow morning!
When: Tuesday, October 16th, - 10:00am -
Where: CHARAS Community Center
605 East 9th Street
Why:
Gregg Singer is coming to CHARAS for a site visit tomorrow morning, 10:30am (gather at 10am). The last 2 times he visited he sent the police with a phony warrant and then came to destroy our murals, so who knows what he's up to. Please come by if you can and let Singer know that we will not let him turn our community center into another corporate venture.

This update was posted 10/6/01

This morning - Friday Oct. 5th, evil doer, Gregg Singer, sent 'Upscale Design & Painting' over to whitewash the new murals on the front walls of CHARAS. This is the second time Singer has destroyed CHARAS murals.

In November of 99' he destroyed murals depicting the history of CHARAS and a memorial by Chico of slain Artistic Director and Community Leader Armando Perez. The new murals were a collaborative project organized by Seth Tobocman this past August.(Seth offered to continuously repaint them, remember?, so hopefully, we will hold another mural painting day soon)

Greedy Gregg has clearly violated a supreme court stipulation by coming on a Friday, without notice and destroying property.(he's only allowed in tues. wed. & thurs. 10am-4pm, with 24 hrs. notice) Since Gregg's hatred is only fueled by calls and faxes, and he will claim we are harassing him, everyone is encouraged to call 'Upscale Design and Painting' and let them know that they are being hired to come in the very early morning to destroy community art because of his obsession to destroy our 21 year old community center.. etc.

The President of Upscale Design and Painting is:
Vladimir Yuzhuk -718-646-0568
501 Brightwater Ct. atp. 104
Brooklyn NY 11235

CHARAS LEGAL UPDATE:

I think by now alot of you have heard that GS sent the Sheriff's Office, Manhattan South, Chief Hale, 9th precinct and the Detective Squad to CHARAS August 24th to issue a illegal 72 hour notice of eviction. Judge Saralee Evans vacated the warrant of eviction and told Singer's lawyers they were not to try to seek a warrant again, (until after December 12th that is). CHARAS has also learned that Gregg Singer's appeal of our stay has been denied. So we are here until at least December 12th, and are continuing to try and find evidence of Singer's real intentions for CHARAS. We're planning a legal strategy meeting soon and will call another community meeting sometime this month.

FUNDRAISER/HALLOWEEN PARTY:
Times Up/Critical Mass & CHARAS &... are working on a Big Halloween Party-CHARAS Fundraiser for Friday, October 27th. So far we have plans for a Political Haunted House, Fright Night Movie Lounge, Costume/Makeup room, Bike Auction by Recycle a Bike, Story Time with Rev. Billy?, D.j. Band and Bar, with a kids party early evening. if you want to help out, please let me or ludmilla know. xsusan

This update was posted 8/31/01

EVICTION VACATED, RENT PAID

Date: Wed, 29 Aug 2001
Judge Vacants Warrant / Warns Singers Lawyers

Wednesday, August 28, In a court hearing today on an order to show cause, Civil Court Judge Saralee Evans vacated the warrant of eviction issued against CHARAS and stated that the warrant clerk who issued a 72 hour notice on August 23rd had clearly made a mistake. She went on to stay that there was nothing dark or mysterious about the warrant, that is was not intentional on the clerks part. She then spoke to Singer's lawyers about the fact that they went to get a warrant in the first place, after she had issued a decision barring them from getting a warrant until December 12th.

Gregg Singers lawyers rewrote the decision when they tried to explain to Judge Evans her own order. They said they had waited ample time for payment and that the order stated that they could get a warrant unless CHARAS paid rent to them the day of the hearing, Aug. 10th. The Judge was noticeably angry but did not sanction them nor reprimand them. She said that they will not try this again, that her order was clear that no warrant would be issued until December 12th, and that there was no due date for payment of returned rent.

Singers lawyers were then given the certified payments in the court room, as they have refused them August 10th and have refused them since May.

The Marshall was again in the back of the courtroom, this time he was reading regulations concerning liability. . . probably because he is liable. We will meet with the Puerto Rican Legal Defense Fund to see if there is something we can do. -xs

Please post this notice to friends far and wide.

This update should have been posted 8/25/01

EVICTION NOTICE SERVED...AND BEATED!

Today, August 24, Chief Hail, Borough Supervisor from Manhattan South, (of Tompkins Square Park fame) the Manhattan South Task Force, the 9th percinct, the detective squad and the Sheriffs department all converged on Charas at about 11am today to serve us with a phony 72 hour notice of eviction. Its seems that Singer's lawyers got a clerk in civil court to sign a warrant for Judge Saralee Evans based on non-payment of rent.

The Sheriff's department then called the brass in order to post notices at Charas. Charas lawyers rushed to court to find that Judge Evans knew nothing about the warrant and we now have a court date (order to show cause)next week to straighten things out.

It seems Singer tried to pull a fast one, serving a phony 3 day notice on a Friday, calling the brass and trying to evict us on Monday if he could get away with it. Fortunately we were prepared and will ask for sanctions against his lawyers next week.

We've called, faxed, served and sent overnight deliveries to all the marshals and police departments to make sure they know we do not have a notice of eviction pending.

I was shocked to find the entire lower manhattan brass out just to put up notices. They were clearly looking for something more, they went to the fourth and fifth floors as well as the roof, and of course found nothing. The Times should have an article tomorrow. We should be clear that Singer has the police department ready and willing to evict us.

Judge Saralee Evans called the warrant a mistake. We do have a stay until December 12th and will continue to organize to save our community center. Singer must be desperate to try an illegal eviction. Stayed tuned. xsusan

This update was posted 8/22/01

Saturday's Mural Project, organized by Seth Tobocman is also nearly complete and replaces the murals destroyed by Gregg Singer is Nov. 99'. Please come by and see them, before Singer decides to destroy them again.

There was also a press conference on Monday that gave information on the temporary stay in civil court and asked candidates & political representatives to support the continued battle to save the community center. Council member Margarita Lopez' office helped coordinate the conference.

This update was posted 8/10/01

MORE TIME FOR CHARAS!

Today, August 10, Civil Court Judge Sara Lee Evans gave CHARAS more time, until December 12th! to find new digs etc. Thats lots more time we can use. Luckily, artists and tenants from charas were present to offer testimony of the hardship they would suffer if they had to leave tomorrow or next week. Judge Evans then spoke of how important CHARAS was and the need to beable to continue their work. Singer's lawyers appeared very angry and had a man who appeared to be a marshall of some kind waiting in the court room. Another small victory bringing us that much closer to the end of Giuliani's reign. Thanks all. Dont forget to come by tomorrow to 'community day' flea market, mural painting, food and workday. xs!

This update was posted 8/6/01

Date: Fri, 03 Aug 2001 17:35
Subject: CHARAS-next working meeting Monday/Flea Market/Mural Painting Sat. 11th

Hi all,
We're having a organizing meeting this coming Monday, August 6, at 6:30pm at CHARAS in room 114. this is a working meeting for everyone who wants to participate in upcoming plans. please come help out if you can.

We are also scheduling a mural painting/flea market kind of community day, work day at charas Sat. August 11, 11am-7pm. Please come to Monday's meeting to help and get more details. hurry hurry hurry.xs

This update was posted 8/3/01

Date: Thu, 02 Aug 2001
Subject: 10 day reprieve for CHARAS

Yesterday, August 1st, CHARAS recieved a 10 day stay, pending a court date scheduled for August 10th. On August 10th, we we'll go back to our trial judge in Civil Court, Sara Lee Evans and request more time (i.e. more time to look for new space / relocate).

We are also going back to the Appellate Division to try and seek a stay pending appeal of Sara Lee Evans decision to nullify or set aside the jury verdict. though no one holds out much hope of anything from the division at this point.

We have gotten a good deal of press and want to continue to mount public pressure on both Singer and Giuliani to stop the eviction of our community center. the rally was a great show of unity and support Thanks to everyone for turning out and organizing it. We need to build on Saturday's rally. There are a few affinity groups starting to make plans now.

We are also looking for new info for another case. ?

We need a meeting and a rally. Will post asap. -susan

This update was posted 8/1/01

Date: Tue, 31 Jul 2001 14:48:47
Subject: No Stay for CHARAS !

This morning, Tuesday, July 31, The Appellate Division denied CHARAS a stay pending appeal! Surprised?

We're thinking of a rally, at CHARAS soon, maybe tomorrow or thursday, approx. 6pm. We'll let you know asap, depending on the pols, press etc.

-Legally we will go back to court to request more time, we also have to appeal the trial court's decision at the appellate term and the appellate division.
-but as a community, we have to organize. xs
(what would yogi say?)

This update was posted 7/27/01

Date: Fri, 27 Jul 2001
Subject: Armando Perez/Press Conference Today!

What: Press Conference for Armando Perez
When: Friday July, 27th, 11:30 am
Where:City Hall Steps

Why:
There is breaking news in the unsolved murder of Artistic Director and Co-founder of CHARAS/El Bohio Armando Perez. Armando was murdered on April 3, 1999 outside of his apartment in the Ravenwoods Projects in L.I.C. 4 suspects were arrested last year but all charges were dismissed this past Wednesday, July 25th.

It was learned today that the Queens D.A. office has who they believe to be the people responsible for Armando's murder in custody. One has been charged with his murder and another has been implicated and is being questioned. Council member Margarita Lopez has called the conference. I know this is very short notice but please try and attend.

Viva Armando Perez!
xs

Here is an interview with Armando Perez From just after the auction. It was posted about a year ago.

Here is a tribute to Armando by Alfredo Texidor Irizarry.

Here is a tribute to Armando by the downtown weekly NY Hangover writer Jason Grote.

This update was posted 7/25/01

Date: Tue, 24 Jul 2001 13:27:53
Subject: Organizing Meeting tonight -7pm

Please dont forget -CHARAS last organizing meeting before the rally. TONIGHT. 7pm at Charas: 605 E. 9th Street bet Avenue B & C. Leslie is going to facilitate this one. we need help with logistics, outreach and performers/drum corps. Please come if you can.
-susan

Update:
We had a good press conference yesterday. C. Virginia Fields, Fernando Ferrer, Margarita Lopez, Steve DeBrienza all spoke well and had great coverage. 4, 5, 7, 9, NY1, 47, Times (Sunday city), Daily News (nothing today), El Diario, Hoy, El Noticas del Mundo, Villager. The two clips I saw (7, 47) were great, very sympathetic.
uhmm.xs

Previous updates:

This update was posted 7/23/01

Date: Sun, 22 Jul 2001 21:36:56 -0400
Subject: Come out for Charas Press Conference Mon. 11:30am City Hall

Please try and turn out for this one. (press release below)
web cast on wbai in exile at www.wbix.org

Stop Charas Eviction
Press Conference
Steps of City Hall
Monday, July 23, 11:30am

Confirmed Speakers include: Congress member Nydia Velazquez, Bronx Borough President Fernando Ferrer, Assembly member Deborah Glick, Council member Margarita Lopez, Council member Steve DiBrienza
(broadcast by WBAI in Exile at www.WBIX.org)

Political representatives, community residents, artists and activists will hold a press conference and rally on the steps of City Hall at 11:30 a.m., July 23 to resist and denounce the Giuliani Administration's sale and pending eviction of CHARAS Community Center, a 20 year old Latino Cultural Institution on Manhattan's lower east side.

Earlier this year, CHARAS celebrated a court victory, when a jury found that new owner Gregg Singer could not evict the center because he did not plan to use the building for Community Use. The victory was short lived: on June 15 the arts organization learned that trial Judge Sara Lee Evans had never entered the jury's verdict, and that an appeals court had overturned a previous decision that gave CHARAS the right to a trial--placing the center in jeopardy once again.

"This is an assault on our community and our rights," stated Chino Garcia, Executive Director and co-founder of CHARAS. "We had a trial and the jury found in our favor. How can the courts ignore the verdict once it's been rendered?"

Mayor Giuliani would rather attack art than support it. Three years ago, the Mayor ignored the community's needs and put CHARAS on the auction block. Last year, he made headlines by attempting to censor the Brooklyn Museum's exhibit "Sensation," which he deemed offensive. Now, as CHARAS' new owner is poised to evict and destroy one of the city's most vital arts centers, the Mayor does nothing. Supporters of Charas have also learned that the Giuliani Administration gave Singer $2 million dollars in a purchase mortgage to buy the property, while refusing numerous proposals by Charas to buy and renovate the cultural center.

If CHARAS is evicted, the community will lose studio, performance, and rehearsal space for hundreds of artists; recovery programs and art therapy classes; dance and martial arts classes; after school and youth programs, including Recycle-A-Bike; computer training workshops; a public art gallery; and meeting space for countless community organizations.

CHARAS is ardently pursuing a legal battle-lawyers will seek a stay pending appeal-but the courts are no substitute for community action. In addition to the July 23 press conference at City Hall, organizers for CHARAS will hold a mass rally Saturday July, 28 12 noon at Union Square Park.

This update was posted 7/19/01

From: CHARAS/El Bohio charas@erols.com
Date: Wed, 18 Jul 2001 15:41:27
Subject: STOP CHARAS EVICTION! Press Conference, Rally & Week of Action

(please post & post & forward & forward)

STOP THE EVICTION OF CHARAS COMMUNITY CENTER!

Press Conference, Rally and Week of Events July 23rd - July 29th

Press Conference:
Monday, July 23rd, at 11:30 am,
City Hall steps

Rally:
Sat. July, 28th - 12 noon
Union Square Park at 14th st.

Week of Events (see calendar below)
CHARAS/El Bohio
605 E. 9th St.

Flying in the face of a jury's decision that landlord and condo developer Gregg Singer could not evict them, a judge has slated CHARAS/El Bohio Cultural and Community Center for eviction this August. This is an assault on our community and our rights-but it doesn't have to happen.

If Singer succeeds, not only will we lose our Community Center, but plans to displace our community will take a giant leap forward. Since elected, Giuliani has rewarded fat cat developers at the expense of the people of New York, and in 1998-despite proposals by CHARAS to purchase and renovate the building, and over the protests of the community-he sold CHARAS.

From the Lower East Side to Harlem, Brooklyn, and beyond, rents are skyrocketing. Tenants are forced to cope with rent gouging, harassment, luxury development, and privatization, while small businesses, community gardens, and public space of all kinds are falling beneath the wheels of the Giuliani steamroller. Today, CHARAS; tomorrow, your apartment.

If CHARAS is evicted, our neighborhood will lose studio, performance, and rehearsal space for hundreds of artists; recovery programs and art therapy classes; dance and martial arts classes; afterschool and youth programs, including Recycle-A-Bike; computer training workshops; a public art gallery; and meeting space for countless community organizations. CHARAS is ardently pursuing a legal battle-lawyers will seek a stay pending appeal-but the courts are no substitute for community action.

We need your imagination, passion, and intelligence! We're asking concerned friends to put together their own autonomous actions. To help, visit the space, or call (212) 982-9446, and/or visit www.freespeech.org/charas.

CALENDAR OF EVENTS - For updates, please call the Hotline: 212.714.7148

Friday, July 20th, 6:30pm
Speakout at Tompkins Square Park
Corner of 7th St. & Ave A
(a lower east side tradition, anyone can come and speak, and usually does.)

Saturday and Sunday July 21 & 22 2-5 pm
Sign in and Banner/Puppet making - Charas/El Bohio 605 E. 9th St.

Monday, July 23rd
Press Conference at City Hall-11:30am
WBAI in Exile: 7pm
Live feed from CHARAS/El Bohio-605 E. 9th St.

Tuesday, July 24th
Hosts: Picture the Homeless
WBAI in Exile - 7pm Live Feed from Charas
Charas Organizing Meeting - 7pm

Wed. July 25th>
WOW Theater Company
Performance 7-8pm

Thurs. July 26th
DAN (Direct Action Network)
Police and Prisons Group
Childrens Dance Project
Community Gardens

Fri. July 27th
Speak out - Tompkins Square Park
Corner of 7th St. & Ave. A - 6:30pm
Free CUNY & Lower Manhatan Anti-Displacement Coalition
Aids Housing Network
at CHARAS/El Bohio - 605 E. 9th St.

Sat. July 28th
Rally at Union Square Park at 14th St.
12 Noon

Sun. July 29th
Rummage Sale 1-6pm
Charas/El Bohio - 605 E. 9th St.

What is CHARAS?

CHARAS/El Bohio is a 21-year-old Community and Cultural Arts Center on the Lower East Side on Manhattan. Starting in 1979, CHARAS, along with several other community arts organizations, including Adopt-a-Building, rescued the former Public School P.S. 64 at 605 E. 9th Street (bet. aves b&c). Since then, CHARAS has provided the community with thousands of programs, events, festivals and workshops and invested millions of dollars in sweat equity, Federal and City funding to renovate and repair the building. In 1996, the Giuliani Administration decided to auction the Center, despite proposals submitted by CHARAS to purchase and renovate their home of 20 years.

This update was posted 7/16/01

From: CHARAS/El Bohio charas@erols.com
To: "charas@erols.com" charas@erols.com
Date: Sat, 14 Jul 2001 14:21:40 -0400
Subject: Next CHARAS Organizing/Outreach meeting this Tuesday July 17th
Message-ID: 3B508DB4.E6EAA940@erols.com

The next CHARAS meeting is scheduled for this Tuesday, July 17th at Charas
6:30 - 7:30pm outreach mtg.
7:30- 8:30pm demo/events/logistics/legal update

605 e. 9th st. (bet B & C)

this may be the last big meeting before the demo, so please try and make it. Come pick up/drop off flyers, posters, palm size flyers, and help with logistics for the demo july 28th. We 1