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Coming Up: Who is on the New Rochelle Walk of Fame?


You think Hollywood has the only Walk of Fame?

Saturday, April 27, the City celebrates its richly talented past residents (see the list below) while inducting E.L. Doctorow, Jay Leno, Mighty Mouse, Carl Reiner and others!

Schedule for Saturday’s New Rochelle Notables Day:

11:00 am         “Authors of New Rochelle Biographies” will feature a lively panel discussion by individuals who have researched and written about the lives of some of the community’s late, great women, including dancer and cultural anthropologist Pearl Primus, dancer and trend-setter Irene Castle, and local businesswoman Bessie Dreizen. A book-signing to follow the discussion in the Library’s Ossie Davis Theater.


1:00 pm           Official Presentation of the 2013 Inductees into the New Rochelle Walk of Fame on the Library Green. Seven beautifully-illustrated interpretive signs will be unveiled, adding to the 25 honorees originally inducted in 2011. A reception will follow. (In the event of rain, the induction ceremony and reception will take place in the library’s Ossie Davis Theater and Meeting Room).


2:00 pm           New Rochelle Songs & Songwriters of the Past

Members of the Village Light Opera Guild will perform a program of famous popular songs written about New Rochelle – (just 45 Minutes from Broadway!) or written by New Rochelle residents. The program will include selections from “How to Succeed in Business”, “Ragtime”, “Strike Up the Band”, two popular Christmas tunes and a  medley that includes Woody Woodpecker’s theme song.


3:30 pm           New Rochelle Songs & Songwriters of Today

New Rochelle musicians Diane Guernsey, Liz Loglisci, Paul Gross, Brian Carter and Kevin Hill, will perform a program that includes classical, folk, popular and jazz.

“New Rochelle Songs and Songwriters of the Past and Today” is made possible by the Friends of NRPL. The two programs will take place in the Ossie Davis Theater. Donations accepted.

About The New Rochelle Walk of Fame – The New Rochelle Walk of Fame was dedicated in 2011, and is located on New Rochelle’s Library Green, at Huguenot Street between Memorial Highway and Lawton Street. It is comprised of attractive interpretive signboards relating the stories of  nationally notable individuals with distinct ties to New Rochelle, and their contributions to America.  Strategically located in the gardens lining the Library Green pathway, the signs were created and funded by former resident and historian Roderick Kennedy Jr., working in partnership with the New Rochelle Department of Parks and Recreation, the Downtown BID, the New Rochelle Public Library, and City Historian Barbara Davis. Mr. Kennedy was born in New Rochelle and developed a great affection for the city while spending his early childhood here. The Walk of Fame is a micro history of America as reflected in the lives of New Rochelle’s famous sons and daughters, representing the arts, business, politics, education, the media, entertainment and sports.




Jerry Boch, Composer and Joseph Stein, Writer                        

The award-winning musical, Fiddler on the Roof, was created by Jerry Bock (score), Joseph Stein (book), and Sheldon Harnick (score), while Bock and Stein were living in New Rochelle.

Nell Brinkley, Illustrator, Cartoonist

Nell Brinkley was one of the most famous American illustrators in the early decades of the twentieth century. She was the creator of the “Brinkley Girl,” a young liberated workingwoman who wore lacy dresses and her hair in curls, who became popular in songs, films and theater.

E. L. Doctorow, Novelist

An editor, professor and prolific writer, he is best-known for his works of historical fiction that include The Book of Daniel (1971), Ragtime (1975), World’s Fair (1985), Billy Bathgate (1989), The March (2005) and Homer and Langley (2009).

Jay Leno, television Personality and Comedian

Jay Leno grew up on Leland Avenue in New Rochelle, attending Trinity school until his family moved to Massachusetts, in 1959.

Frederick Douglass Patterson,

Frederick Douglas Patterson was an educator, humanitarian and doctor of veterinary medicine. He is best remembered for founding (UNCF). In 1935, He was president of Tuskegee Normal and Industrial Institute (now Tuskegee University), one of the foremost African American institutions of higher education in the country, founder of the United Negro College Fund, initiator of the black Army Air Corps (Tuskegee Airmen0 and recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom.

Carl Reiner, T.V. Writer, Director, and Rob Reiner, T.V. Personality, Actor, Writer, Director

In 1953, Carl and Estelle Reiner moved from the Bronx with their 6 year old son Rob to 48 Bonnie Meadow Road in New Rochelle. The home and community became the inspiration for hit TV series The Dick Van Dyke Show staring Dick Van Dyke and Mary Tyler Moore as the quintessential American suburban couple (1961 to 1966).

Mighty Mouse (Paul Terry, Animator)                                        

In 1934, Paul Terry settled his pioneering animation studio, Terrytoons, in the Pershing Square Building in New Rochelle, now known as the Kaufman or “K” Building.  In 1949, he moved his studio to the former Knights of Columbus Hall at 38 Centre Avenue. Over the next several decades, the studio would create some of America’s most beloved cartoons, including the famous mouse, Heckle and Jeckle, Gandy Goose and Deputy Dawg.

2011 New Rochelle Walk of Fame Inductees

Madame Beatrice Alexander – Premier doll maker of the 20th Century (1895-1990)

Theresa Brewer – Singer and entertainer (1932 – 2007)

Joseph Campbell – Professor and writer about mythology and comparative religions (1904 – 1987)

Irene Castle – Dancer and trend-setter, of Irene and Vernon Castle fame (1893-1969)

Carrie Chapman Catt – Leader of the women’s suffrage movement (1859 – 1947)

Ellabelle Davis – Opera singer (1907 – 1960)

Ossie Davis  – Actor, writer, activist (1917 – 2005)

Ruby Dee – Actress, writer, activist (b. 1924)

Eddie Foy – Vaudeville performer, of “Eddie Foy and the Seven Little Foys” fame (1856-1928)

Lou Gehrig – Yankee great and Hall of Famer (1903 – 1941)

Don Hewitt – Television producer; “60 Minutes” (1922 – 2009)

Adrian Iselin and family – Financier, philanthropist (1818 – 1905)

Elia Kazan – Director, playwright (1909 – 2003)

Walter Lantz – Animator, cartoonist; “Woody Woodpecker” (1899-1994)

Joseph Leyendecker – Artist, illustrator.

Robert Merrill – Opera singer (1917 – 2004)

Thomas Paine – The man who “sparked” the American Revolution, author of Common Sense

(1737 – 1809)

Jan Peerce – Opera singer (1904 – 1984)

Pearl Primus – Dancer and choreographer (1919 – 1994)

Alex Raymond – Comic Strip artist; “Flash Gordon” (1909 – 1956)

Frederic Remington – Artist of America’s West.

Norman Rockwell – Artist, illustrator (1894-1978)

Saint Elizabeth Seton – The first American-born woman to become a saint (1774-1821)

Buffalo Bob Smith – Radio and TV personality; “Howdy Doody” (1917 – 1998)

Whitney M. Young, Jr. – Educator, Civil Rights leader, founder of the Urban League (1921 – 1971)




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