Irvington’s “River Chick” Organize for Charity

A very imaginative and innovative group of Irvington businesswomen have organized their five businesses to develop projects that will benefit various charity events in Westchester.

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L to R: Theoni Katsihtis, Heidi Sonn, Darci DeMatteo, and Patricia Connor

Currently, the “River Chicks” group now includes “Buttermilk Blue Jeans” and “Say Cheese and Thank You” at 76 Main St., with owner Darci DeMatteo featuring the latest fashions in jeans. “Say Cheese” includes a fine array of stationery and invitations for every occasion. In the same building at 76 Main St., is “The Perfect Pair” with owner Patricia Connor who merchandises unique hand bags and shoes. Connor is also currently president of the Irvington Chamber of Commerce. Further down the street at 46 Main St., is “Tra La La,” owned by Theoni Katsihtis, featuring toys, baby gifts and children’s furniture. Next, “River Spa,” at 50 S. Buckhout, owned by Heidi Sonn, provides a full service spa with hair, massage and facial services.

“River Chicks” was the idea of DeMatteo and was founded in 2006. The group has generated a number of civic-minded new ideas for the surrounding community including monthly shopping nights on the Third Thursday of each month. They started with their first charity, “River Town Heroes” which features outstanding mothers and children in the Village; they support the “Make a Wish Foundation;” and they are now involved with six other local charities.

On Thursday, the 20th of September, the five participating stores will be donating 15% of their Thursday sales to the Pace Women’s Justice Center located at 78 North Broadway in White Plains, NY. Each store will serve wine and cheese at 5 p.m. and the stores will stay open until 9 p.m. River Spa will provide free chair massages and will also be donating gift certificates.

The Women’s Justice Center was started in 1991 and is affiliated with the Pace University School of Law. It was founded as the first academic legal center in the country devoted to training attorneys and others in the community on domestic violence issues. The Center has grown to be a highly respected, multifaceted legal service center serving over 2500 victims and survivors of domestic violence each year. Their outreach and training programs are conducted throughout both urban and rural NY State.

The Center actively sponsors and conducts lectures, seminars, training, free legal walk-in clinics on various issues, including domestic violence, sexual assault, trafficking, divorce custody, child support, immigration, dating violence, elder law and other issues. Finally, they make legal information and resources readily available to the general public through their Westchester Division Helpline (HELPLINE 914- 287- 0739).

The “River Chicks” plan to continue bringing funding and information on various community charities throughout the year. They initially began the group with an eye toward helping each other promote their businesses rather than compete directly. They meet monthly for marketing ideas and hold storewide sale events twice a year for pre-Spring and pre-Fall merchandise. For information on their future plans, contact Darci DeMatteo at “Buttermilk Blue Jeans” at (914) 591-6277.

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About the Author: Arnold Thiesfeldt