Monday, January 24, 2011

New Beginning - Gregory's first post

Dear Boogiedowner Community;

Firstly, I thank you Erin and Lou for founding the “Boogie downer” and bestowing me with the honor to carry on the tradition. All their hard work maintaining it these last few years is appreciated. I hope to continue and expand on the foundation they built. I also must make clear that this is a new beginning. May God bless this new venture. May it be positive, informative, honest and entertaining. May it make The Bronx stronger.

There are many reasons for my excitement in my new role as Custodian / Editor in Chief / Owner of the “Boogiedowner”. My primary goals for the site to become an enjoyable empowerment tool for myself and the community as well as it being a creative outlet for myself and others. With the invention of new social networking technology, the communication of news and ideas is a self help tool for the “people”, if we choose to take advantage of it. I hope over time the readership sees it’s self as a community and uses its cumulative power to promote positive change for the Bronx, our neighborhoods, our families and ourselves.

With so much of today’s media owned by a few major corporations I want to clear or help explain who I am. To do so I choose a few family photos that you might also find entertaining. They should help me explain who I am, and what credentials I have that make me believe I am fit to write and disseminating information about, and to the Bronx public. Please understand I am putting not only myself, but also my beloved family out there in order to provide confidence that someone stands behind this blog site and the words written on it. This blog site is run by a real person with a real name; not a ghost writer.

Who is Gregory Tsougranis? As Lou and Erin also mentioned above I am a NYS Licensed Associate Real Estate Broker specializing in Bronx Real Estate. Before that I was an accountant in both the public and private field, a NYC special education teacher and I had my own retail furniture store specializing in the furniture I imported predominantly from the Eastern Europe. I am sure these experiences will present themselves in my blog. Enough chatter; here are the photos!!! (If there is any delay in posting the photos it's only because I am new to the system)

The first photo shows me back in my second grade class in 1975 along with my first love, Ms. Markowitz. I went to PS 97 in the Pelham Parkway section of the Bronx, where I live presently. I must have done every homework assignment that year. Kudos to anyone that thinks they can identify me. Kudos to all the teachers out there moldings tomorrows minds.

Photo #2 goes back a little bit further. It shows me riding my donkey cart in my first home on Sherman Ave off the Grand Concourse in the early 70’s. To date I have been involved in over 60 real estate transactions many of which were large oversized co-ops along the Grand Concourse much like my first home shown above. No, I do not still ride my donkey cart but every know and then I rent a trolley from the BOEDC and have real estate tours in the Bronx.

The third is were it all started with the first Gregory Tsougranis to set foot on the American soil. He was my grand-father who imigrated from Greece to America via Ellis Island in the early 1900's. Within a few years he opened Olympia Flower Shop in the Bronx. It is presently called Olympia Hearns Flower Shop. It's located at 249 E 149th St. and about to celebrate it's 104th contineous year in business in the Boogiedown. You can reach my god-father Nicholas Chugranis @ (718) 585-3060 for top quality flower arrangements and exceptional service. It might be the oldest continious family owned businesses in the Bronx. If anyone knows of other centenarian family owned small businesses please do let me know. I would love to write about and on the boogiedowner.

Gregory Tsougranis


Guywithacause said...

Gregory welcome...I read your posting but would like to know how long you have been in the Bronx, where you have lived during that time, whether you own or rent (and what you own or rent), and why you have stayed (or returned).

I understand you are a Licensed RE person, and although I have had more negative experiences than I care to admit with salespeople and brokers in NYC, especially the Bronx, I am hoping you will rise above the nonsense and provide a compelling, balanced, and intelligent blog.

If you need assistance with the blog I would be happy help in any way that I can.

GraceAnne LadyHawk said...

Welcome! And we feel welcome, too.

Boogiedowner said...

Dear Guy with a cause:

Thank you for your response. I was born and raised in the Bx. Born in Union Hospital off Fordham. Lived my infant life on Sherman Ave and most of the rest when I was not in college or overseas on Pelham Parkway. Went to PS 97, IS 144 and Columbus before going to Binghamton for College. Trying to upload the photo of me as an infant on Sherman Ave off the Grand Concourse and the photo of my grandfather who started Olympia Hearns Flower Shop in the Bx over 100 years ago.

I am curious why you care if I am a renter or owner? Also curious to what your cause is? I hope we can communicate more and I look forward to your input. As per your negative experiences with realtors your welcome to express yourself. Let me know how you feel you can help.


Boogiedowner said...

Dear GraceAnne LadyHawk:

Thank you for the warm welcome. I am looking forward to your input as well.


Anonymous said...

Welcome! Please keep the posts informative, honest, objective, civil, respectful - a big request, but one which will make the Bronx a better place.

Anonymous said...

This is great. I am looking forward to hear from someone with such deep roots in the borough. Please update frequently.

I am glad to hear about the flower shop being in business for so long. We should celebrate more of these Bronx Old Timers and promote their patronage. It brings to mind from the news recently Shipman Stationery on the Concourse which unfortunately closed, and Loeser's which just celebrated 50 years on 231st. Cheers!

Ryan said...

Thanks for carrying the BoogieDowner torch; I always look forward to its posts- evidence that others value the Bronx and see what's great about it. Now I look forward to your perspective- Welcome!

Guywithacause said...


Thanks for the response. My question regarding rent vs own is knowing whether a licensed salesperson involved in over 60 transactions in the Bronx also chooses to buy/invest, or whether they rent. The rent vs own reasons are far more complex, but it is just a curiousity.

As for my cause, it varies but always to spread the truth, usually about the reality of life in the Bronx, as there is too much false information and purposeful deceit from our Borough President down to people who have never even step foot in the borough.

A little about myself: I am a local Bronx dude, and live in the same building that my grandparents purchased when they came to NYC in 1956. The same place my mother and family was raised, and the same place I was raised.

I am active locally, but maintain my presence in the Southern Bronx (south of 163rd that is), as that is not only my neighborhood but the most in need and changing the most/least, depending on your view. I am wrapping up a substantial renovation of my building and focusing more on neighborhood development like tree plantings, beautification, and amenities.

I look forward to your postings, and would be happy to meet in person. By the way your grandfather's Flower Shop is the only place we ever went for flowers, because it was the only one around...same goes for Venice Restaurant on 149th.

The Mayor of Melrose said...

Correction to Guywithacause. Olympia Hearns is not the only flower shop in the area. There are in fact, 3 shops. Lily's flower shop on Morris and 152nd has been there for over 60 years and there's Peter's Flower's on Melrose for over 40 years. All three florists are within 3 blocks of each other.
Ed Garcia Conde
The "Mayor" of Melrose

100 PERCENT said...

It is funny that BD would be leaving the Bronx for Queens, as I left Queens over thirty years ago to live in the Bronx.
In an interview of former Queens Borough President years ago I asked her about the downward trend of Queens County that I saw as a past resident of the borough, giving many examples. Then BP Claire Schulman apologized to me, agreed with me, and said that she was trying to keep the borough of Queens stable.
I sure hope you well, and look forward to Greg's articles.

Anonymous said...

Is there an email address where we can reach Greg with suggestions for posts, etc.?

Anonymous said...

I also hope you won't be afraid to expose the ugly politics that keep our Borough from improving. This blog did a great job exposing Espada's hypocrisy. Hoping to see your version of politicians parked in front of hydrants, so to speak.
Also, please keep current. Good Luck.

Anonymous said...

Greg, a "centurian" is a soldier. I think you mean "centenarian."