REPUBLICAN RIVAL FOR KELLNER Michael Zumbluskas, an independent with ties to the Reform Party, is running on the Republican ticket for the newly redrawn 76th (currently the 65th) Assembly district on the Upper East Side. Zumbluskas previously challenged incumbent Assembly Member Micah Kellner in 2010 and is making another run at him this year. He has been active in politics for many years and currently works for the Department of Transportation as a wireless support specialist, according to his biography. Zumbluskas emphasizes a need for job creation, especially in upstate counties, alternative energy development and drastically reducing the state budget. Known to friends as "the Big Z," he's positioning himself as a much-needed newcomer who will not play by traditional Albany rules. "For effective government, we must change the way business is conducted in Albany," Zumbluskas said in his campaign's mission statement. "We can no longer have a few party leaders in a back room making all the decisions." MALONEY AND OTHERS HAIL CORNELL DEVELOPMENT Last week, U.S. Rep. Carolyn Maloney joined acting U.S. Secretary of Commerce Rebecca Blank, Cornell University President David Skorton, Council Member Jessica Lappin and NYC Economic Development Corporation President Seth Pinsky, among others, to herald a groundbreaking announcement about the Cornell-Technion tech campus planned for Roosevelt Island. The school announced the impending creation of a new United States Department of Commerce "Innovators' Resource Center," which will be located right on the future Roosevelt Island campus. The center will allow students and faculty to easily access information on existing patents and file new patent applications, a function that officials hope will be utilized often at the new innovation-focused school. It is the first partnership between the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office and a university. "This new center recognizes the fact that high-tech inventors and start-ups need a patent office for the 21st century, when ideas can move at the speed of Google," Maloney said. "Even though U.S. exports are now at record levels, the speed of change has itself changed: If we hope to remain competitive on the world stage, we should see to it that anyone with an innovative idea can obtain the protection of a patent without being tied up in red tape." The center is slated to move to its permanent location in 2017, but for now will be housed at Cornell/Technion's temporary incubation campus at the Google offices in Chelsea. WALK IN THE PARK EVENTS The Central Park Conservancy is teaming up with Madison Avenue footwear retailers to raise money for the park and encourage exercise-and shopping-in the neighborhood. On Saturday, Oct. 13, shoppers who make a purchase at any of the 15 participating stores on Madison Avenue will be entered to win one of 45 free pairs of shoes. The stores, all between East 57th and 86th streets, include Bally, Barneys New York, Calvin Klein, Charlotte Olympia, CH Carolina Herrera, Devi Kroell, DKNY, Fogal, Galo Shoes, Jimmy Choo, Longchamp, Max Mara, Porsche Design, Stuart Weitzman, and Stubbs & Wootton and will be marked with a special welcome mat. On Saturday, Oct. 20, at 11 a.m., walkers can sign up for a quarter-mile high-heeled "Walk in the Park," leaving 67th Street and Madison Avenue, with a $25 donation to the Conservancy. For more information and to register, visit www.centralparknyc.org/walkinthepark. Free Flu Shots New York Doctors at 205 Lexington (corner of 32nd Street) is currently giving FREE FLU SHOTS to the community. (While supplies last!) For more information, call 212-684-4700.
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