Creative Kids Publishes The Franconian

Introducing The Franconian, produced by HarlemLIVE

Where did we get the name? Franconia, a place in Germany, is etched in stone over the doorway. It is currently hidden by scaffolding.  We made it a noun by adding an ’n’. However, we’re open to a name change based on feedback.  Many of the area’s pre-war buildings have names. Take a look. 

Creative Kids of HarlemLIVEbegan with the help of a former school teacher and youth living in our building, 19 – 25  St Nicholas 

This is a trial run of our newsletter. We’re welcoming anyone  to contribute to this occasional publication produced by the building’s youth.

Feel free to suggest or offer any stories. recipes, poems, artwork, adventures, for future issues

Suggestions can be directed to Djeneba Ballo of the 5th Floor or Abdoulaye and Muhammed Diop of the 3rd floor.

Creative Kids

Editor: Djeneba Ballo

Contributors: Abdoulaye and Muhammed Diop and Mamady, Mawa, and Aboulaye Ballo.

What’s Up with the Cat Downstairs?

In spring 2013, an outgoing tenant abandoned a female kitten to the basement. For many weeks, it hid in the shadows. Then she timidly befriended the super and other tenants.  Not long after that, a large grey alley cat made friends with her, too, and by summer’s end, she was a very young mother.

After successfully nursing three females and one male for two months with the help of the super and tenants, the mother was taken to get her shots and spayed.  

Attention was given to make sure the kittens were people friendly. The super’s daughter and a former tenant each adopted one of the females, while the other two found homes with the help of a posting on the website, Craigslist.   

 The proud mother cat now patrols her territory, greeting those doing laundry and doing her part in keeping mice away. The occurrence of mice dropped dramatically once she took up residence downstairs 2 ½ years ago. 

Feel free to say hi. She’s very friendly. She was never given a name. Try “Here Kitty, Kitty.” 

Scaffolding, Fresh Paint, New Store Front

2015 – A change in the building’s management over a year ago brought about several developments. Scaffolding was put up last fall. Many apartments changed hands. The halls went from white and green to shades of brown and beige around Labor Day. What looks like a fancy coffee shop in the corner store front, is actually a real estate broker. The hair salon is gone.

Ballo Family’s West African Summer

 
by Djeneba and Mamady Ballo


 This summer, we went with our mother and older sister, Mawa, to the west African country, Cote D’Ivoire. Our parents were born and raised there. 

On our way to Cote D‘Ivoire , we were so nervous. I, Djeneba hadn’t been there for 13 years. I kept asking myself if my relatives would remember me and if they would like me. 


Once we got there it was a total shock, We were expecting there to be no supermarkets, that we’d be staying in an apartment, and to only have outdoor showers. Instead we stayed in a beautiful house that had a shower, supermarkets, and much more.  


What really shocked us was the cultural differences and how, wherever we went, people treated us like we always lived there. Even if they did not know you, they were willing to help you.

We learned a lot about the government and the school systems.  

This trip was fun. We got to know more about our family, and met some we never knew. The Ivory Coast is a very special place to us. The stereotype that all the people are poor is not true. 

Overall we had an amazing time learning and understanding the world better.

Taking Wax to the Max

by Tiffany Santiago Photos by Johnny Holmes

On December 7, 1996, Angel Colon, Johnny Holmes and I visited the first and only African American Wax Museum of Harlem. The founder and owner is Mr. Raven Chanticleer. Mr. Chanticleer lives next door to the museum with his wife. 

Raven Chanticleer was born to a prominent family. His mother was born in Barbados, and his father in Haiti. He has one sister and one brother, his brother was born in Haiti. His father was a principal. 

Some of the wax figures he has made includes David Dinkins and Martin Luther King. It takes Mr. Chanticleer about one month to finish a figure. He uses paper mache and plaster from the feet up. 

Dr Martin Luther King, Jr and Honorable David Dinkins, former NYC mayor

Raven Chanticleer made a lamp out of popsicle sticks and it took him about a month to make it. Besides running the museum, he writes for a newspaper. He used to teach at a college but found it more interesting to teach younger kids. He is now writing a book called “Taking Wax To The Max”. 

Raven Chanticleer

Mr. Chanticleer’s dream is to make his museum bigger and to install a computer room. Right now he is working on a figure of Bob Marley. He says that making wax figures and art objects is what he always wanted to do, that this was his calling.

Celebrities Go To School

by Keisean Marshall

How would you feel if you walked in to your classroom and saw a famous celebrity; like Madonna, Snoop Dog, Cameron Diaz or even Bill Gates? This is the case for some colleges around the nation. 

Courtesy of MTVu; a network dedicated to all aspects of college life both on and off campus. 

“Stand Up” [the program] brings the class to life in a way that few would ever imagine,” said Stephen Friedman, MTVu’s general manager. 

The network had envisioned a series where colleges would compete to hear a celebrity speak. But that proved too time-consuming to organize and when its second speaker, Marilyn Manson, nailed his appearance at Temple University, MTVu knew it had a better format. 

The goal of this program is to make the classroom fun, entertaining and make the class more interacting. 

Colleges and the network try to keep the program under-wraps- they manage to keep this serious secret by telling fibs to students who may wonder about the cameras when they show up to class. 

Hunter College in New York City participated in the program last week, a film class was told it was screening Madonna’s new documentary, “I’m Going to Tell You a Secret,” and discussing it with the film’s director. With an endless stream of adults- including big colossal bodyguards walking in and out of the room during the movie, smart students figured out what was happening. 

Student, Pinar Noorata, a junior film major said, “Since there were security guards all lined up I figured she was coming,” “That was kind of a dead giveaway. But I think everybody was still surprised. It was kind of surreal.” 

MTV and Viacom is considering giving “Stand In” some exposure on the main network, Friedman said, and is also mulling making extended versions of the appearances available on the Internet.