New Settlement – a nonprofit organization that aims to break systemic barriers, advance justice, promote leadership and strengthen neighborhoods in the Bronx – announced on Tuesday that its Community Center will now be home to the New York Yankees’ famed ‘Bronxie the Turtle.’
Bronxie, a male red-eared slider turtle, was adopted by New York Yankees pitcher Nestor Cortes in late September of last year. Shortly after adopting Bronxie, the Yankees went on a seven-game winning streak, earning the turtle his title as the team’s lucky clubhouse teammate.
After bringing excitement to the Bronx’s home team, Bronxie’s next mission is to root for the local community from his new home at New Settlement’s Community Center – located just 12 blocks from Yankee Stadium – and serve as a champion for the organization’s mission to advance initiatives in education, employment, housing, wellness and creative expression, and help cultivate an equitable society.
“My teammates and I are so happy that Bronxie has found such a great home so close to Yankee Stadium, where he can be cared for by the staff and children at New Settlement,” Cortes said. “Bringing the little guy into our clubhouse last year brought our team together when we needed it most, and I know he’s going to have the same effect on the kids who get to see him and look after him every day. We are no doubt going to miss him but we know Bronxie is going to get a lot of love from his new family.”
Bronxie will live on the second floor of New Settlement’s Community Center near the organization’s reading nook, which provides a space for local youth to enjoy a selection of books. Gus Stavroulakis, director of Community Health Initiatives, and Melany Falcon, a Membership Services representative, will oversee care for Bronxie, alongside other New Settlement staff and young people from the organization’s after-school program.
“As an organization that is rooted in serving the Bronx community, we are thrilled that the New York Yankees chose New Settlement as Bronxie’s new home,” said Rigaud Noel, executive director of New Settlement. “We’re excited to welcome him to our Community Center, where he will cheer on community members and the youth we serve through our education initiatives. We also offer our appreciation to the Yankees for providing the resources for his new habitat.”
Red-eared sliders get their names from having red stripes where their ears would be and by having the ability to slide off rocks and logs into water quickly.