Happy World Fish Migration/Green Your Commute Day, UESiders!

Fish, of course, will be behaving themselves, as ever opting for quiet partying in their fresh and salt water habitats… 

Be nice if bike riders took a page from that book… Celebrated their genuinely green commute by keeping off sidewalks, going the right way in bike lanes and stopping  at red lights. Might really enjoy the feeling of righteousness conferred by adhering to the law!  Might even become a habit!!  (Might make life easier for their defenders like UGS!!!)

Meanwhile, it’s also Endangered Species Week…  And one in five are just that.

So we’ll all be that much greener from here on out:

Friday, May 20th:  NYSkies Astronomy Seminar

McBurney House, 125 West 14th Street between Sixth & Seventh, 6:30-8:30pm 

Starmaster John Pazmino weighs in on the (surmountable) challenges of spring/summer Milky Way viewing from NYC!  Free.

Saturday,  May 21st:   82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

82nd Street between First and York, 9am–2pm

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm 

At their tables be American Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey, Valley Shepherd Creamery, Rising Sun Beef, Alewife, Ole Mother Hubbert, Samascott, Gajeski and Sikking Farms!

Delighted to say, our Master Knife Sharpener will be us, too!

Market Manager Guramrit says:   “I’m featuring rhubarb this Saturday!  Stop by the info tent for a scrumptious and tangy taste and recipe !  :)”

Cherry Lane could be returning next week…

Last week’s recycling totals: 66 lbs. batteries; 22 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges;  10 compost bins;  61 bags of clothes.

OMG!!  Another week of TEN BINS!!  (Is that an eleventh bin looming on the horizon?)

Saturday, May 21st:  Randall’s Island Bird Bonanza

Meet at the South End of the Little Hell Gate Bridge, 10am-1pm

Who knew there are 152 bird species who call Randall Island home…  Or visit frequently!  See a bunch ot of them with a help New York Audubon volunteers! Audubon even provides binoculars and birding guides!  Free.  Best for 7 and older. For full details and directions

Fast approaching:    

Wednesday, June 1st to Sunday, June 5th:  2016 World Science Festival

Various Venues and Many Times 

Five days…  Fifty events!!  A science sail…  Stargazing in Brooklyn Bridge Park… Gravitational waves explained…  A tribute to  Oliver Sachs…  And forty-six more programs!!  (Many just great for kids)! For the full schedule and tickets

Thursday, June 2nd:  Quilt Making Workshop – Learn to Make an Amish Potholder

American Folk Art Museum, 2 Lincoln Square, 1-4pm

Take it from the compulsive crafters that we are, AFAM’s classes teach foundation skills and in the most enjoyable, low-stress way!   Your potholder will be hand-pieced (by your hands) and inspired by the beautiful, traditional Amish Roman Stripe design…  All with the guidance of artist Diane Rode Schenck!   Members, Seniors & Students, $30.  Non-members, $35.  To reserve a place…  

Commencing Friday, June 3rd:  Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney’s Greenwich Village Studio Tours

8 West 8th Street between Fifth & Sixth Avenues

The place where the notion of the Whitney Museum and so much that we treasure today was born… Made possible by a grant from the National Trust for Historic Preservation. Free but tour groups will be small.   For more on the Studio’s history…  And the lowdown on tour dates, times and tickets

Saturday, June 11th:  Shred-A-Thon Almost Summer Edition

82nd Street between First and York, 11am-2pm

Three weeks and counting down!!

But remember:

NO cardboard or handled shopping bags.

And please do remove paper clips and spiral bindings. 

NO HARDCOVER BOOKS.   (But we do accept paperbacks.)

Take your hardcovers over to Goodwill.

(Thank you, Council Members Garodnick and Kallos, for your support!)

Saturday, June 11th & Sunday, June 12th:  11th Annual Jazz Age Lawn Party

Governor’s Island 

A celebration of all things Twenties – 78’s played on gramophones, jazz orchestras, Charleston lessons and dance contest, autos of the era and more…  As if just being on the incredible Governor’s Island wasn’t enough!   Tickets commence at $55…  For complete details… 

Wednesday, June 15th:  NYBG Wikipedia Edit-A-Thon

LuEsther Mertz Library, New York Botanical Garden, 2900 Southern Boulevard, 1-6pm

We the public are invited to be “editors”, assisting the library to create and/or refine Wikipedia entries of noteworthy botanists!  Really, a remarkable volunteer opportunity!!  For more info and to sign up

Saturday, June 25th:  Queensboro Oval Park Rally

The Oval, 59th Street & York Avenue, 11am-1pm

Tired of the least-in-the-city-park space we UESiders “enjoy”?  Think the tennis bubble and $225-an-hour tennis games should be scrapped and the one-acre, once beautiful Queensboro Oval returned to year round public/community enjoyment?  Then this is the rally for you!!   Bring your opinions and signs…  And, yes, bring the kids!   (For more on the Oval past and present…)

On to miscellany:

Talk about one great summer job opportunity:  The fabulous Hell’s Kitchen Farm Project’s looking for NYC high school youth for its first Youth Farm Intern Program!  (The HKFP being the remarkable group that grows hundreds of pounds of produce in kid swimming pools atop the Metro Baptist Church and distribute it via their CSA and pantry for the needy.)  Interns will be learning rooftop farming basics, pantry management and food justice challenges NYC/America face.  There is stipend!  For more and to apply…   (There’s also a Youth Farm Program Educator’s position available!)

Hell's Kitchen Farm

In case we were wondering if all those things we sign have any effect:  The 90,000 of us who wrote in support of protections for West Coast forage fish had a hand in making the new NOAA ruling happen!!    

Three cheers that warrants have been issued for the jerks who’ve made a mini-career of endangering environmentally sensitive sites in Yellowstone and other national parks

Think our city should be allocating more money for our parks…?  (Scroll down…)

Or the way out of Puerto Rico’s financial morass is selling off a wildlife sanctuary

Do we really need genetically engineered trees?

Or if you’re of the opinion that as we Americans reduce our dependence on coal, we shouldn’t be exporting it to the rest of the world

Urvashi Rangan, the director of the Consumer Reports Food Safety & Sustainability Center, discusses food labels and how to make informed choices when shopping for food, on Farm to Table Talk and on the NPR show “Midday.”

Name This Mountain quiz

map of the world’s most superlative trees…  (California’s got a lot of them!)

The best sun screens

An all-time high in furry cuteness…  But, hey, it’s National Pet Month:

Right off the Cute-O-Meter chart: The baby raccoon saved by a kindly cab driver…   (Keep scrolling!)

What could be better than doing yoga with a sloth?

A kitten nursery!!

Baby octupuses being born!!  (Turn off the “music”.)

Not that we ever doubted that fish have feelings, too…  (Manta rays recognize their reflections as themselves!)

A tortoise sitter

A baby fox makes a miracle recovery

Dog paw protection on summer sidewalks

What would a week be without a snippet or two from the Hudson River Almanac:

5/4 – Manhattan, HRM 4-2: In the past week, Hudson River Park Trust staff caught a total of five lined seahorses from the Hudson River. The seahorses were found hanging onto the eel mops attached below our floating docks at Piers 40 and 84. Seahorses are weak swimmers due to their vertical orientation and small dorsal fin. For support against river currents, they use their curled tails to grasp onto a substrate. – Sally Feng

5/4 – Manhattan, HRM 1: We caught a tautog (blackfish) in our killifish trap at The River Project’s sampling station on the lighthouse tender Lilac at Pier 25 in Hudson River Park. In our crab pot we caught another lined seahorse (95 mm). The river’s salinity measured 15.0 ppt, dissolved oxygen was 5.8 parts-per-million, and the water temperature was 52 degrees F.  – Jacqueline Wu

lined seahorse

lined seahorse

Evergreenly,

UGS

 

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Happy 88th Birthday of the First TV Station Going On Air, UESiders!!

We’re talking 1928, people!!

And guess where that station was ?  Right here in the Empire State, in the then hometown of then pioneer of all things electric and T. Edison brainchild, General Electric.

Yup, as long ago as that and American engineers weren’t alone on the field…  German, Russian, French, you-name-’em brainiacs were all struggling to produce a durable, commercial model as far back at 1840’s but picking up steam in the early 1900’s!

Fast way forward and the thought that occurred earlier this week:  When was the last time you saw a TV – old-fashioned tube or flat screen – dumped/unrecycled out on UES streets?

A year or so for us…  Which speaks so brilliantly for the ever increasing greenness in our hood!

(Was also National Shrimp Day on the 10th…)

So what’s on this week: 

Saturday,  May 14th:   82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

82nd Street between First and York, 9am–2pm

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm 

With us will be American Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey, Valley Shepherd Creamery, Rising Sun Beef, Alewife, Ole Mother Hubbert, Samascott, Gajeski and Sikking Farms!

Yes, Ballard’s Honey will be back!

As will our Master Knife Sharpener!!

Uber Market Maestra says:    “Market Manager Guramrit has the week off, so we’ll be welcoming last year’s manager Andrei back for a one-Saturday guest appearance!  (He’s spent the winter in the Philippines so there’ll be plenty beyond fruit and vegs to ask him about!)  PLUS:  Rhubarb is the featured item this week. Great cooked with apple and a bit of honey and served over vanilla ice cream! It’ll be on both Samascott’s and Gajeski’s tables!”

Last week’s recycling totals: 81 lbs. batteries; 22 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 12 Pairs eye glasses;  10 compost bins;  55 bags of clothes.

TEN compost bins, people!!  Yet another composting record is set!!

Saturday, May 14th:  Wildflower Day at Solar One

Meet at the Solar One Educational Center, Stuyvesant Cove Park, East River Esplanade between 22nd and 23rd Streets, 11am-2pm 

Totally family-friendly, hands-on gardening…  Planting and watering seedlings… Learning about why we don’t like weeds and how to remove them complete with roots…  Basic and fun plant identification…  A great talk by naturalist Mark Brownlee describing how plants came to be plants… And everyone leaves with native oak acorns to plant!  Free, but please RSVP to  liza@solar1.org. 

Sunday, May 15thHistoric Candy Tasting

Mount Vernon Hotel Museum, 421 East 61st Street, 1:30pm

Join candy historian – nice job! – and author Susan Benjamin for an overview of candy’s evolution and a sampling of favored sweets over time!  Adults, $20. Members and children under 12, $15.  

Sunday, May 15th:  Green Park Gardeners Volunteer Day Plantathon

Andrew Haswell Green Park, East River Esplanade at 60th Street, 2-5pm

The mission:  Plant 350 Black-Eyed Susans donated by the Parks Department and Partnerships for Parks in the Green Park Gardeners’ gorgeous beds along our wonderful Esplanade!  To sign up to lend a hand, please email greenparkgardenersnyc@gmail.com.  (Heavy rain cancels.  Rain day, Saturday, May 22nd.)

Black eyed susans

Monday, May 16th:  3rd Annual Esplanade Friends Benefit!

Bar Felice, 1591 First Avenue at 83rd Street

Public art and flowers and music and dancers and unrelenting pressure for swift repairs and structural upgrades and the gorgeous improvements to come on the Rockefeller U and Hospital for Special Surgery segments…  Not to mention the resurrection of the 107th Pier!  We’ve all seen changes and how vibrancy’s returning to our wonderful Esplanade.  Save the date and be a part of keeping the great new energy flowing!!  (And then there’s Bar Felice’s great room, fine wine and hors d’oeuvres…  Not to mention Friends’ amazing raffle loot!)  For tickets and more

Thursday, May 19th, Tuesday, May 24th & Thursday, May 26th:  Learning to Listen with Lucie Vitkova 

The Czech Center, 321 East 73rd Street

Composer/accordionist/harmonicist/tap dancer Ms. Vitkova’s shares her belief in music inspired by life’s most ordinary sounds…  Most generously in a May 19th workshop that’s open to all ages and whether one plays an instrument or not! Filling out the week, are a doc on her work and the world premier of a new composition!   All free.  To request a place in the workshop: devilliers@czechcenter.com.   And for more on all 3 events

Approaching fast:

Friday, May 20th to Friday, May 27th:  Annual Park Avenue Tulip Dig

Park Avenue 54th to 86th Street (But don’t touch either side of 67th Street, please!)

Of course, you’ve loved Park Ave’s gorgeous spring tulip display…  Now, the icing on the cake:  The Fund for Park Avenue invites one and all to come and dig up those tulips for replanting around street trees, community gardens or your building’s garden plot!!

Advice from the Fund:  With proper care, Park Avenue tulips have been replanted and continue to bloom in personal and community gardens in and around New York City. To enjoy the tulips for years to come, please be sure to follow the instructions below and exercise extreme caution while on the Avenue malls:

When digging up the bulbs, do not take any soil and do not cut off the leaves. Bulbs should be stored in a dry place until the leaves have turned brittle.  They can be re-planted in October or November. Use a small amount of Bulbtone-type fertilizer and be sure to choose a location that gets full sunlight.

Friday, May 20th t0 Sunday, May 22nd:  NYBG Science Open House Days 

New York Botanical Garden, 2900 Southern Boulevard, The Bronx

A weekend that explores the length, breadth and fun of the Botanical Garden’s vitally important work understanding and preserving Planet Earth’s wonderful plant and fungal life!  Adults, $25;  Seniors & Students, $22;  Children, $12.  For the program menu

Sunday, May 22nd:  Second Annual Upper West Side Love Your Tree Day

Amsterdam Avenue at 84th Street, 12pm

Street tree bed care demonstrations by TreesNY and Goddard Greenkeepers, a worm bin composting demonstration by LES Ecology Center, coffee and snacks provided by Irving Coffee and Jacobs
Pickles and opportunities galore to meet fellow New Yorkers who also care about
urban trees and the environment!  Gardening goodies while they last!!  To sign up

Tuesday, May 31st:  NYS Clean Energy Standard Hearing

Location TBA, 6pm

Even with the location yet to be announced, the Sierra Club’s already firming up NYC dwellers wishing to speak their piece on our state’s green energy future!   Do we want to be climate protection leaders or what?!!  To get yourself on the Club’s contact list

Then in June:

Saturday, June 11th:  Shred-A-Thon Almost Summer Edition

82nd Street between First and York, 11am-2pm

Ready…  Set…  Start bundling up that avalanche of paper now!!

Just keep in mind:

NO cardboard or handled shopping bags.

And please do remove paper clips and spiral bindings. 

NO HARDCOVER BOOKS.   (But we do accept paperbacks.)

Take your hardcovers over to Goodwill.

(Our thanks to Council Members Kallos and Garodnick for making Shred-A-Thons possible!)

Saturday, June 25th:  Queensboro Oval Park Rally

The Oval, 59th Street & York Avenue, 11am-1pm

Tired of the least-in-the-city-park space we UESiders “enjoy”?  Think the tennis bubble and $225-an-hour tennis games should be scrapped and the one-acre, once beautiful Queensboro Oval returned to year round public/community enjoyment?  Then this is the rally for you!!   Bring your opinions and signs…  And, yes, bring the kids!   (For more on the Oval past and present…)

Yikes, July:

July 2016:  History Weeks at the Mount Vernon Hotel Museum & Garden Camp

421 East 61st Street

Session One – Ages 9 to 12 – Monday, July 11th to Friday, July 15th, 8:3am-3pm –  Young folks of today experience what it was like to be a kid in 19th Century NYC…  Complete with games, crafts, food and field trips to historic sites!  $275

Session Two – Ages 6 to 8 – Monday, July 18th to Friday, July 19th, 9am-12pm – The even younger set steps back into the 18oo’s and discover long-forgotten games and skills and treats from way back we still love (like ice cream)!  $200.   For more on both, call 212-838-6878 x26 or n.sokolova@mvhm.org.

Whew!  Miscellany:

Three cheers and more for the kindergarten and first grade National Chess Champions of UES PS77!!

Think we need to keep the pressure high on powers-that-be so NYS gets the 50% renewable energy the governor’s promised… 

Winner in the Criminally Dumb-As-A-Post category:  The Yorkshire on East 86th with its numerous illegal gas hook-ups!

Sorry to say there now seem to be problems with Newburgh’s water

Cramming 3 schools and a high rise development onto a single 96th Street block…?

But 7 more East Midtown buildings are up for landmarking!

What?!  Someone in NYC government engaged in future thinking/system back-up??!!   

Fabulous stats from last weekend’s Hudson River Sweep:  108 Projects – 2,200 Volunteers – 39 Tons of Trash Removed – 9 Tons Recyclables Removed & Recycled – 836 Trees & Shrubs Planted or Maintained!!  (Most common debris:  Plastic Bottles & Styrofoam)

HUdson RIver Swee;

Next to animal stories, we’re most moved by tales of those who come to and acquire education later…  Well, it’s never too late for learning, yes

Thirty of NYC’s best secret gardens!!

That and a long-closed portion of Central Park’s been re-opened!

Jersy tomatoes have always tasted great to us…  But they’ll be getting even more lip-smacking in coming years!

Incomplete (no Schurz Park, no Bryant Park) but the first list of NYC summer outdoor movies we’ve seen… 

Top  12 secrets ofbout the Gowanus Canal!  (Presumably even more revealed on an upcoming tour!)

Yes, the world needs vegan sneakers!

And sustainable beer drinking!

Hey, you animals:

The NYState Deer Management Program Update…   

Sunglasses for a lamb… 

Check out what these ibex are so casually climbing!

And the Bird of the Week is…  (And looks like it’s covered in sequins!)

Glittering Starfrontlet

 

A second mention – but oh-so worthy – for Duke Riley’s Fly By Night public art installation starring 1800 LED-equipped pigeons

Yours in ever greenness,

UGS

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Happy Cinco de Mayo, Happy 125th Birthday Carnegie Hall, (Wow!)  It’s Been 55 Years Since the First American  Arrived in Space and National Wildflower Week, UESiders!

Happy-Happy Intro 209-A, too, and world with no more of the below:

BUT…  And most of all…

The happiest and most loving Mother’s Day!!

And a wonderful week ahead for one and all:

Friday, February 19th:  NYSkies Astronomy Seminar

McBurney House, 125 West 14th Street between Sixth & Seventh, 6:30-8:30pm 

Prepare yourself for the Mercury in transit and Mars in opposition with assistance of Starmaster John Pazmino!  Both phenomena observable in NYC skies from start to finish (weather permitting)! Free.

Saturday,  May 7th:   82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

82nd Street between First and York, 9am–2pm

Compost & Clothes Collection – 9am–1pm 

With us will be American Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey, Valley Shepherd Creamery, Rising Sun Beef, Alewife, Ole Mother Hubbert, Samascott, Gajeski and Sikking Farms!

Yes, Ballard’s Honey will be back!

No, no Master Knife Sharpener…  Fingers crossed, she’ll return next week.

Returning to the all-important subject of Mother’s Day:  Just how fabulous will this Saturday’s Sikking Farms flowers be????

(You could treat Mom to some choice spring onions, garlic and greens, too!)  

Last week’s recycling totals: 75 lbs. batteries; 12 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 9 1/2 compost bins;  61 bags of clothes.

Yet another 9 1/2!!

Saturday, May 7th:  Holy Trinity’s May Fair 

Church of the Holy Trinity, 316 East 88th Street, 11am-6pm

The annual street fair complete with live music, tables of books, CDs and interesting bric-a-brac, a children’s corner with face painting, crafts and TWO bouncy castles!  Special activities for the dog lovers among us!  Food and drink from the Genesis Pub!  All proceeds go to church programs, of course.

Saturday, May 7th:  Spring Esplanade Exploration

Meet on the Esplanade at 86th Street, 1-4pm 

Who knew that just off our beautiful – in spite of decades of neglect – Esplanade are many a perilous eddy, whirlpool and rocky reef…  Along with the second fastest tidal current in the world! Yikes!  Hell Gate, indeed!  Just some of remarkable nature extending from Schurz Park to 103rd Street!  Famed birder, environmentalist, self-described “interpreter of human ecology” and Exploration leader Gabriel Willow will be making it all the more vivid!  (P.S.  Music and treats await at the 103rd Street end!!)  Free!!  Be there and enjoy, friends!    For more

Wednesday, May 11th:  “Reuse Because You Can’t Recycle the Planet” Screening, Panel and Fund Raiser

4 Times Square, 4th Floor, 6-8pm

The film:  Reuse Star Alex Eaves’ cross-country adventure/investigation as to how reuse is a win-win-win for people, planet and wallet.  The panel:  NY experts on the art of re-use.  The fund raiser:  For the Manhattan Solid Waste Advisory Board which underwrites such worthy endeavors as the Community-Scale Composting Grant Program!   Tickets:  Starting at $20

Wednesday, May 11th:  To Change Everything, We Need Everyone Event

Seafarers & International House, 123 East 15th Street, 7pm

The May installment in the ongoing Sierra Club Sustainability Series.  This time out, experts fill us in on ways each of us can advance the cause of energy efficiency, water consumption, food waste (UESiders know something about that one!) and the impact of (non-Greenmarket) agriculture.  Free but donations appreciated. 

And then: 

Saturday, May 14th:  Wildflower Day at Solar One

Meet at the Solar One Educational Center, Stuyvesant Cove Park, East River Esplanade between 22nd and 23rd Streets, 11am-2pm 

Totally family-friendly, hands-on gardening…  Planting and watering seedlings…  Learning about why we don’t like weeds and how to remove them complete with roots…  Basic and fun plant identification…  A great talk by naturalist Mark Brownlee describing how plants came to be plants… And everyone leaves with native oak acorns to plant!  Free, but please RSVP to  liza@solar1.org

Sunday, May 15th:  Green Park Gardeners Volunteer Day Plantathon

Andrew Haswell Green Park, East River Esplanade at 60th Street, 2-5pm

The mission:  Plant 350 Black-Eyed Susans donated by the Parks Department and Partnerships for Parks in the Green Park Gardeners’ gorgeous beds along our wonderful Esplanade!  To sign up to lend a hand, please email greenparkgardenersnyc@gmail.com.  (Heavy rain cancels.  Rain day, Saturday, May 22nd.)

Black eyed susans

Monday, May 16th:  3rd Annual Esplanade Friends Benefit!

Bar Felice, 1591 First Avenue at 83rd Street

Public art and flowers and music and dancers and unrelenting pressure for swift repairs and structural upgrades and the gorgeous improvements to come on the Rockefeller U and Hospital for Special Surgery segments…  Not to mention the resurrection of the 107th Pier!  We’ve all seen changes and how vibrancy’s returning to our wonderful Esplanade.  Save the date and be a part of keeping the great new energy flowing!!  (And then there’s Bar Felice’s great room, fine wine and hors d’oeuvres…)  For tickets and more

Tuesday, May 17th:  Hudson River Tunnel Scoping Meeting

Hotel Pennsylvania, 401 Seventh Avenue at 33rd Street, Gold Ballroom, 3rd Floor, Afternoon Session 3-5pm, Evening Session 6-8pm

The Federal Railroad Association and New Jersey Transit invite the public to a pair of meetings during which tunnel plans will be reviewed and citizens can informally speak with and query staff, and submit comments.  A most critical infrastructure project, so go and weigh in, people!  To prepare yourself and more 

Over the Memorial Day Weekend:

Sunday, May 29th:   3rd Annual Memorial Day Hamilton Walking Tour

Meeting Place Given With Ticket Purchase, 1pm

Author and Hamilton afficianado James Nevius will lead a lucky group through streets and to sites that were very much part of Hamilton’s world.  Tickets: $20 before May 18th and $25 thereafter.  For more and tickets...

 Suddenly, it’s June:

Saturday, June 11h:  Shred-A-Thon Almost Summer Edition

82nd Street between First and York, 11am-2pm

Ready…  Set…  Start bundling up that avalanche of paper now!!

Just keep in mind:

NO cardboard or handled shopping bags.

And please do remove paper clips and spiral bindings. 

NO HARDCOVER BOOKS.   (But we do accept paperbacks.)

Take your hardcovers over to Goodwill.

(As always, thank you, Council Members Kallos and Garodnick for making Shred-A-Thons possible!)

Monday, June 13th to Wednesday, June 15th:  Clean Energy Economy Conference

SUNY Polytechnic Campus, Utica, New York

From microgrids to solar PPAs to hydro to clean energy communities and back again!  So much to learn and in beautiful upper New York State!  Tickets from $50-$97.  For full details

Then there’s miscellany:

Think America should do something about the lead in its water???  (Legislation and money are languishing in Congressional committees.)

Humm…  What’s the EPA and Army Corps of Engineers up to…  Dumping dredged material – CT-dredged material, at that – in waters New York and Connecticut share?  And just what’s that material

Kudos to NYS Senator Liz Krueger for co-sponsoring the Fossil Fuel Divestment Act that, if passed, would require the State Comptroller to remove any fossil fuel holdings from the NYS Common Retirement Fund by 2020!

Great exemplar of citizens eloquently going to bat for the green:  Recent testimony on off-shore wind power at a Long Island Power Authority hearing

More kudos still to Scott’s Miracle Gro for eliminating bee-killing chemicals from its Ortho product!

All but impossible to believe but Fairway – never been in the 86th Street store when it was jammed with shoppers – has declared bankruptcy!  (But they say they’ll be out of it by June…)

Coming soon to York and 75th…  Yes with an affordable component, but the usual an-architect-maybe-walked-through-the-room design… 

For all those who’d prefer personal products not containing tricolsan…  

Tired of the increasing number of robo calls and like them to go away?

Whoa!  Don’t we all need the updated and free NYS “Atlas of Inland Fishes of New York” guide to all 181 of the finned and scaled inhabiting state lakes, ponds, rivers and streams!  

Then there’re these amazing stats on fish in the NYS portion of Lake Erie!  (Is the DEC ever busy!) 

Way, way off the reservation:

Remember your high school chemistry class?  Remember its classic whoosh bottle demonstration?

Eleven of the world’s most baffling theme parks…  (We don’t need more than 11!)

Nine famous rocks…  (We have ourselves pressed lips on the Blarney Stone!)

house and environs covered in coffee mugs?

How to make wool pom poms!

Animal Time:

After 25 years of extinction in the wild, the African oryx is reintroduced to the desert of Chad!  (And our Smithsonian played a role!)

Hummingbirds get their wealth of energy (up to 100 wing strokes a second) how?

Not that we aren’t all grateful for the improving – if not great – state of our UES parks, but wouldn’t be great to have a herd of goats nibbling away in one of them?

More people…  More highrises…  More chickens in the backyards of NYC!

Muskrats in our waterways, too

We’ll be dreaming of millions of plastic bags (still in shipping boxes, all unused),

UGS

 

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Happy International Noise Awareness Day, UESiders!!

The organizer’s motto being: “Control your noise and respect the sound environment”…

Like to deliver that message (better still, command) to truck drivers coursing up First Avenue who, over the last 4-5 months seem to be engaged in a contest to see who can be first to shatter windows with a single, ultra-long horn blast. 

Deep breath.

Better still we wish a happy 116th b’day to Walter Lantz, creator of Woody Woodpecker!

Oh what a week we have ahead: 

Saturday,  April 30th:   82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

82nd Street between First and York, 9am–2pm

Compost & Clothes Collection – 9am–1pm 

At their tables will be American Seafood, Bread Alone, Valley Shepherd Creamery, Rising Sun Beef, Alewife, Ole Mother Hubbert, Samascott, Gajeski and Sikking Farms…  And Master Knife Sharpener Barbara Hess!!

You read that right:  After a long, dark winter’s absence, Ms. Hess will  back in her corner spot, next to Valley Shepherd and will she ever be ready to hone!!

(Ballard’s Honey is on a one-week vacation.  Look for them next Saturday.)

Wow!  Alewife’s garlic mustard greens…  Sauteed them just like broccoli rabe!  Yum!!

Then there’s this from Uber Market Manager Margaret:  “Asparagus and ramps arrive in the market this Saturday!!  Both Gajeski and Samascott have asparagus and Samascott has ramps, too. And I’m hearing Cherry Lane will be returning and with strawberries at the end of May!  Yes, spring is finally here for real!”

News flash:  Last week for the #plasticcleanse sale and at an even deeper discount:  The new Greenmarket tote PLUS 4 reusable produce bags (in 2 sizes) for a total bargain basement $15!! Market Manager Guramrit has them at her table!

Last week’s recycling totals: 66 lbs. batteries; 8 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 6 pairs eyes glasses; 9 1/2 compost bins;  36 bags of clothes

Counted the bins set up down at Union Square on Saturday…  14.

Asked the compost manager how many, on average, they filled on high-traffic Saturday. Answer…12 to 14!!

Let’s do our best to not get overly full of how environmentally committed we are…

Saturday, April 30th:  National Drug Take Back Day 

Precinct 13, 230 East 21st Street & Precinct 200, 120 West 82nd Street, 10am-2pm

What better way to safely dispose of those prescription drugs gathering dust on the shelves of your medicine chest than to place them in the hands of Drug Enforcement Agency agents who’ll be doing the collection!  (You bet it’s strange neither Lenox Hill Hospital -now Northwell – or Precinct 19 is participating in this year’s effort!)

Saturday, April 30th: Yorkville – A Celebration of Home

Bohemian National Hall, 321 East 73rd Street, 10am-2pm

And we quote, “Join Friends of the Upper East Side Historic Districts and the Historic Districts Council as we celebrate Yorkville’s rich history as a melting pot of immigrant cultures.”  Speakers include historians, preservationsts and – of course – native Yorkvillians with choice tales of times passed!  Lunch provided by neighborhood classics Schaller & Webber, Doma na rohu and Glaser’s Bake Shop!  Organized by Friends of the Upper East Side Historic District and the Historic Districts Council.  Members of the HDC and FUESHD, $15. Non-members, $20.  To register
And then – holy crow – it’s May:

Saturday, May 7th:  Spring Esplanade Exploration

Meet on the Esplanade at 86th Street, 1-4pm 

Who knew that just off our beautiful – in spite of decades of neglect – Esplanade are many a perilous eddy, whirlpool and rocky reef…  Along with the second fastest tidal current in the world! Yikes!  Hell Gate, indeed!  Just some of the remarkable nature extending from Schurz Park to 103rd Street!  Famed birder, environmentalist, self-described “interpreter of human ecology” and Exploration leader Gabriel Willow will be making it all the more vivid!  (P.S.  Music and treats await at the 103rd Street end!!)  Free!!  Be there and enjoy, friends!    For more

Sunday, May 15th:  Green Park Gardeners Volunteer Day Plantathon

Andrew Haswell Green Park, East River Esplanade at 60th Street, 2-5pm

The mission:  Plant 350 Black-Eyed Susans donated by the Parks Department and Partnerships for Parks in the Green Park Gardeners’ gorgeous beds along our wonderful Esplanade!  To sign up to lend a hand, please email greenparkgardenersnyc@gmail.com.  (Heavy rain cancels.  Rain day, Saturday, May 22nd.)

Sunday, May 15th: Historic Candy Tasting

Mount Vernon Hotel Museum, 421 East 61st Street, 1:30pm

Join candy historian – nice job! – and author Susan Benjamin for an overview of candy’s evolution and a sampling of favored sweets over time!  Adults, $20.  Members and children under 12, $15.  

Monday, May 16th:  3rd Annual Esplanade Friends Benefit!

Bar Felice, 1591 First Avenue at 83rd Stree, 6:30-8:30pm

Public art and flowers and music and dancers and unrelenting pressure for swift repairs and structural upgrades and the gorgeous improvements to come on the Rockefeller U and Hospital for Special Surgery segments…  Not to mention the resurrection of the 107th Pier!  We’ve all seen changes and how vibrancy’s returning to our wonderful Esplanade.  Wine and hors ‘oeuvres served!  Fabulous raffle and silent auction prizes!  Save the date and be a part of keeping the great new energy flowing!!   For more

Monday, May 16th:  Physic Dogs Lecture

1094 Broadway, Brooklyn, 8pm

Jim the Wonder Dog that/who answered questions put to him in Morse Code is just for openers in this journey into the world of mystical dogs.  (Who but the Obscura Society comes up with this stuff?!  But worth the journey to Brooklyn, we say!)  Tickets, $18.  For more and to reserve a place… 

Tuesday, May 17th:  Portraits of the People – Miniatures, Silhouettes and Itinerant Artists in America Exhibit

Mount Vernon Hotel Museum & Garden, 421 East 61st Street

An 18th Century French import and brought to even the most rural American communities by largely self-trained, traveling artists, the end product was work of tremendous diversity, beauty, charm and historic importance.  Adults, $8.  Seniors & Students (with ID), $7. Members and children under 12, free.    (Museum summer garden concerts coming soon!)

And then, incredibly, it’s June:

Wednesday, June 1st to Sunday, June 5th:  2016 World Science Festival

Various Venues and Times 

Five days…  Fifty events!!  A science sail…  Stargazing in Brooklyn Bridge Park…  Gravitational waves explained…  A tribute to  Oliver Sachs…  And forty-six!  For the full schedule and tickets

Along the miscellany trail:

Amazing that Nestle has the chutzpah to fill plastic bottles with drought-stricken California water… More amazing still that the Forest Service is inclined to renew Nestle’s permit!   Should you disagree with that policy

Cringe…  Seems like southwestern states are wrecking a bit of havoc with solar power expansion

If you think Congress should permanently re-authorize the Land and Water Conservation Fund

Or that Trip Advisor shouldn’t be steering tourists to sites exploiting animals

Or – most of all – that Flint and all Americans should have clean, untainted water flowing from their taps

prairie flower rediscovered!

A vineyard on a Brooklyn Navy Yard roof!

Embarrassment sure works wonders, even producing a new, revised and speedier water tunnel plan… 

The Cornucopia Institute  – advocates for family farming – will be reporting live from next week’s 3-day meeting of the National Organic Standards Board on their site and on Twitter

You’re 100% right…  There were 300,000 more riders moving through the 96th Street & Lex subway station in 2015!  (And it’s only the 44th busiest station!) 

And which are New Yorkers’ favorite subway seats..?

Pretty much a must see:  Roz Chast:  Cartoon Memoirs at the Museum of the City of New York!

Maybe more:  A Shakespeare first folio at the New York Historical Society in June!

13 gardening hacks formulated by experts

Talk about heroic gardening and a heroic gardener

House plant bird houses

Huh…?  Mr. Margueritaville as business mogul…?

Can’t have enough animals:

Of course, cats hike

Image result for hiking cat

And canoe.

(You’ve just got to fit ’em out right.)

And understand their furry craziness!

The Great Squirrel War…  Occasioned by the invading/invasive, tough and blameless American grey squirrel!

How to avoid “conflict” with coyotes one might encounter…

But be lovely to meet up with a spotted salamander in Queens!

A sheepdog travels 240 solo miles home

The 2016 Audubon prize-winning bird pix!

Five facts about the Atlas butterfly (wingspan 11 inches!)…  

How to make hummingbird nectar

Thanks to the great New Yorkers saving seals and sea turtles!

And thanks to reader Katherine Winkleman for this bit of Schurz Park glory:

Dogwood Meet Sycamore

Dogwood Meet Sycamore

Never more green,

UGS

 

 

 


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Happy Earth Day, UESiders!!

For sure, the 165-plus countries signing the Paris climate agreement know how to Earth Day party!!

So how are you celebrating??  

Going car free for 24 hours?  (Same for the folks who work for you or let them tele-commute!)

Taking the Earth Day Walk and 5K Tour?

Heading up to the NY Botanical Garden and reveling in the beauty?

Volunteering to tidy up a NYC park?  (Booked up? There’s New York State’s I Love My Park Day on Saturday, May 7th and our own UES It’s My Park Day soon to be scheduled!)

Watching the Plant Your Farm” doc (subject:  urban farming) at the Hell Kitchen Farm Project’s rooftop farm?

(Don’t have to leave your chair to support the American Bison becoming the USA’s official mammal!)

Meanwhile, of course, friends…

The most Happy Passover!!

As for things green in the coming week:

Saturday,  April 16th:   82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

82nd Street between First and York, 9am–2pm

Compost & Clothes Collection – 9am–1pm 

At their tables will be American Seafood, Bread Alone, Valley Shepherd Creamery, Rising Sun Beef, Ballard Honey, Ole Mother Hubbert, Samascott, Gajeski and Sikking Farms!!

Have to arrive at the market early to get hands on Valley Shepherd Sheep Yogurt, Mother Hubbert’s chocolate milk and Sikking’s beautiful flowers!

For those of you haven’t equipped yourself with  new Greenmarket reusable produce bags (2 sizes) and tote, there’re still a few available at Manager Guramit’s table.

Last week’s recycling totals: 43 lbs. batteries; 14 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 12 pairs eyes glasses. 9 1/2 compost bins;  35 bags of clothes. 

AND just so you know…  Between 4/2012 and 4/2016, the 82nd Street Greenmarket’s composted 201,868 lbs!!  And from 6/2012 to 11/2015 the seasonal/half-year 92nd Street Greenmarket racked up 40,506 lbs!!

Just incredible!!

Saturday, April 23rd:  Hell’s Kitchen Farm Project Open House

Atop 410 West 40th Street, 10am-1pm

Think your building’s a non-candidate for rooftop farming?  Think again!  Just needs a creative approach as in HKFP’s utilizing of kiddie swimming pools and producing hundreds of pounds of beautiful produce distributed to the needy and via their fantastic CSA!    Check it out!  (Free but donations welcome…)

Monday, April 25th:  Animals, Authors and Art at the 67th Street Library

328 East 67th Street, 3:30pm

Join staff of the New Canaan Nature Center as they show young UESiders how literature, nature and artistic expression blend and create one beautiful whole.  Ages 5-12.  Free. 

Monday, April 25th to Friday, April 29th: Spring Break Crafts & Games at the Mount Vernon Hotel Museum & Garden 

At the Museum and in the Garden, 421 East 61st Street, 11am-4pm

Come one and all – be you kids, parents or caregivers – for the old-fangled fun of 19th century crafts and historic games!   Adults, $8.  Seniors & Students, $7.  Free to children under 12.

Tuesday, April 26th:  100 Years of the MBTA- Spring Migrants of Central Park Walk

Meet at the Loeb Boathouse, East Drive, Central Park, 7:30-9:30am

Kellye Rosenheim and John-Paul Cantusco lead this morning miratory bird-spotting walk in and about The Ramble in celebration the 100th anniversary of the Migratory Bird Treaty Act!  NY Audubon members, $20.  Non-members, $20.

Tuesday, April 26th:  CM Garodnick’s Fathers and Family Leave – Making It Work Forum

Museum of Modern Art Cullman Education Building, 4 West 54th Street, 8-10am

Council Member Dan Garodnick – father of 2 himself – brings together leading thinkers to discuss the cultural and business factors working against fathers taking leave and how its availability can be improved.  Free.  For further details and to RSVP…  

Tuesday, April 26th:  AARP ShredFest

Manhattan Plaza, 400 & 484 West 43rd Street, 11am-2pm

YES!!  Free shredding is spreading and throughout the city… Although, in this instance, AARP’s imposing a 3 bag limit and you need to sign up in advance.  For full details and to register… (Thanks to reader Claire Campbell for the tip!)

Wednesday, April 27th:  Urban Park Rangers Kids’ Program

North End, Big Park/Playground 103, 103td Street & the FDR, 2-3:30pm

No better way for the young-uns’ to enjoy their spring break:   Urban Park Rangers Kids Week and a primo nature discovery program for the 12 and under set!  Totally free!  (Flyer attached.)

And the week following:

Saturday, April 30th:  National Drug Take Back Day 

Precinct 13, 230 East 21st Street & Precinct 200, 120 West 82nd Street, 10am-2pm

Impossible to more safely dispose of those prescription drugs moldering on the shelves of your medicine chest than to place them in the hands of Drug Enforcement Agency agents who’ll be doing the collection!  (Yup.  Strange neither Lenox Hill Hospital (now Northwell) or Precinct 19 is participating in the effort!)

Saturday, April 30th: Yorkville – A Celebration of Home

Bohemian National Hall, 321 East 73rd Street, 10am-2pm

And we quote, “Join Friends of the Upper East Side Historic Districts and the Historic Districts Council as we celebrate Yorkville’s rich history as a melting pot of immigrant cultures.”  Speakers include historians, preservationsts and – of course – native Yorkvillians with choice tales of times passed!  Lunch provided by neighborhood classics Schaller & Webber, Doma na rohu and Glaser’s Bake Shop!  Organized by Friends of the Upper East Side Historic District and the Historic Districts Council.  Members of the HDC and FUESHD, $15. Non-members, $20.  To register
Moving on to May:

Saturday, May 7th:  Holy Trinity’s May Fair 

Church of the Holy Trinity, 316 East 88th Street, 11am-6pm

The annual street fair complete with live music, tables of books, CDs and interesting bric-a-brac, a children’s corner with face painting, crafts and TWO bouncy castles!  Special activities for the dog lovers among us!  Food and drink from the Genesis Pub!  All proceeds go to church programs, of course.

Wednesday, May 11th:  “Reuse Because You Can’t Recycle the Planet” Screening, Panel and Fund Raiser

4 Times Square, 4th Floor, 6-8pm

The film:  Reuse Star Alex Eaves’ cross-country adventure/investigation as to how reuse is a win-win-win for people, planet and wallet.  The panel:  NY experts in the art of re-use.  The fund raiser:  For the Manhattan Solid Waste Advisory Board which underwrites such worthy endeavors as the Community-Scale Composting Grant Program!   Tickets:  Starting at $20

Wednesday, May 18th:  Mapping Invasive Species Class

New York Botanical Garden, 2900 Southern Boulevard 

How cool would becoming part of New York’s invasive species early detection network be??! Free. To sign up for the training session

On to miscellany:

Really….!  Some in Congress think cutting monies for wind power is a good idea?!  (If you disagree…) 

Not quite at the finish line, but the FDA’s now proposed limits to arsenic allowed in infant rice cereal!  (We adults still get to fend for ourselves in the rice-product category…)

And the state of our remaining 120,000 acre redwood forest (once was 2 million) is…  (Great redwood rappelling video!)

Think coal companies under bankrupcy protection should still have to pay for cleaning up the environmental messes they’ve made… 

And think NYS should require sugary sodas to have a diabetes/obesity/tooth decay  warning label... 

Best Consumer Reports rated mosquito repellents are

Meanwhile, France’s moving towards banning glyphosate and additive tallowamine (think Roundup)… 

Seems like the MTA’s revisiting – yet again – their plan for the refashioning of the 68th/Lex station…  

Incredible but for once a NY entity has turned to a first rate inspiration – as opposed to NYC’s pitiful design department or none at all – for the new Tram elevators!  (Shame the station is…)  

The NY Botanical Garden’s offering a ton of Saturday container and terrace gardening classes and at their midtown campus!  (You can grow vegs, too!) 

The violets of New York State!

Yes, it’s about matzo, but uber chef Dan Barber’s piece in the Times reaches wide and deep on what we all want from the grain we consume  

We live daily with how the NYC DOT measures and manages our traffic congestion…  So what’s the approach proposed by US DOT

Weigh on the places you’ve been eating of late and get a free Zagat Guide!  (you’e got till May 5th…)

Indeed, spring history has its own cultural history

Eggs Benedict was invented by whom and where…??

And critters:

Petition after petition’s moved food industry giant from Nestle’s to General Mills to cage-free eggs!  Now the heat’s on Waffle House…  So if you’d like to pump  the temp up another degree

Yes, cougars – the animal variety – are great gardeners

Ducks that work for their keep

Then there’s the tear-inducing new use for a 3D printer 

On this 400th anniversary of his passing, we close with a Shakespeare quote:

One touch of nature makes the whole world kin. 

Yes, of course, Shakespeare was green, 

UGS

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Happy 198th Anniversary of the Printing of Webster’s Dictionary, UESiders!!

The dictionary’s online now, of course, and with a pretty darned good site, complete with trending words, a word quiz and a word of the day…  Today’s being “galvanized”!  

So, how about some galvanizing reading…  Truly galvanizing reading…  As we head towards Earth Day 2016?

The subject:  Fresh Kills, its past, present and future challenges and what places like it – so very many of them dotting the American landscape – and the truly moral questions they pose… Especially given that – and incredibly – the last two administrations’ and Sanitation Department’s plans for NYC waste disposal rely all but entirely on landfill.  

A serious intro, friends, but do not be deterred.  It’s beautifully written and incredibly thoughtful.

So…  READ and be grateful you did!

On to the upcoming 7 days:

Saturday,  April 16th:   82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

82nd Street between First and York, 9am–2pm

Compost & Clothes Collection – 9am–1pm 

With us – and stocked with just what’s needed to make Passover perfect – will be American Seafood, Bread Alone, Valley Shepherd Creamery, Rising Sun Beef, Ballard Honey, Ole Mother Hubbert, Samascott, Gajeski and Sikking Farms!!

In sync with Earth Day’s ultra greenness, Market Manager Guramit will be devoting her cooking magic to – you guessed it! – delicious things to be done with greens!

(In that regard, we have fingers crossed Gajeski shows up with more wild, scrumptious, baby arugula this week!)

Meanwhile, don’t forget Ole Mother Hubbert’s whole chickens and that Rising Sun has Argyle Farm Greek and regular yogurts!

Were Sikking’s flowers outstanding or what?! 

And those new Greenmarket reusable produce bags (2 sizes available) and tote?  In honor of Earth Day, you can score the tote plus 4 produce bags for a Crazy-Eddie-revisited price of $15!  Just head over to the Manager Guramit’s table.

AND don’t forget, you brilliant composters!!  Collect that nice, fat, free gift bag of the finished product and get it around plants – like your block’s street trees – you love!! 

Last week’s recycling totals:  54 lbs. batteries; 25 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 3 pairs eyes glasses. 9 1/2 compost bins;  25 bags of clothes. 

Back in that almost 10-bin groove!

Saturday, April 16th:  Forever Homes for Deserving Dogs Event 

Biscuits & Bath, 1064 First Avenue at 58th Street, 11am-3pm

What better vamp to Earth Day than by giving an unlucky fellow creature and soon-to-be best friend shelter and love!  Organized in cooperation with NYC Animal Care & Control.

Sunday, April 17th:  Rooftop Growing Guide Talk

The Lowline, 140 Essex Street, 12-1pm

Hear from veteran rooftop farmers Annie Novak, Anastasia Cole Plakias and Nicole Baum how they pioneered a new, stories up urban landscape and how to get your own rooftop garden growing!  Free but please RSVP…  

Thursday, April 21st: EARTH DAY KICKOFF!

Lenox Hill Neighborhood House, 331 East 70th Street, 6-9pm

Residential compost collection and electronic recycling!!  The oh-so convenient Fresh (local) Food Box Program!!  Improved bike safety!!  2016 First Avenue Bike Island Gardens!! A ton of free planet-friendly goodies!!  We’re talking green learning, living and fun!!  Organized by CM Kallos. You do want to be there!!  (Check out the attached flyer!)

Friday, April 22nd:  EARTH DAY!!

All Over the Globe and Our City

At the 67th Street Library, they’ll be marking the day with a quiet, earthbound class of Tai Chi for All!  5:45pm.  Free.

And elsewhere in NYC…  (Zoom in on the map.)

Over spring school holidays:

Monday, April 25th:  Animals, Authors and Art at the 67th Street Library

328 East 67th Street, 3:30pm

Join staff of the New Canaan Nature Center as they show young UESiders how literature, nature and artistic expression blend and create one beautiful whole.  Ages 5-12.  Free. 

Monday, April 25th to Friday, April 29th:  Spring Break Crafts & Games at the Mount Vernon Hotel Museum & Garden 

At the Museum and in the Garden, 421 East 61st Street, 11am-4pm

Come one and all – be you kids, parents or caregivers – for the old-fangled fun of 19th century crafts and historic games!   Adults, $8.  Seniors & Students, $7.  Free to children under 12.

Tuesday, April 26th:  CM Garodnick’s Fathers and Family Leave – Making It Work Forum

Museum of Modern Art Cullman Education Building, 4 West 54th Street, 8-10am

Council Member Dan Garodnick – father of 2 himself – brings together leading thinkers to discuss the cultural and business factors working against fathers taking leave and how its availability can be improved.  Free.  For further details and to RSVP…  

Tuesday, April 26th:  AARP ShredFest

Manhattan Plaza, 400 & 484 West 43rd Street, 11am-2pm

YES!!  Free shredding is spreading and throughout the city… Although, in this instance, AARP’s imposing a 3 bag limit and you need to sign up in advance.  For full details and to register… (Thanks to reader Claire Campbell for the tip!)

Wednesday, April 27th:  Urban Park Rangers Kids’ Program

North End, Big Park/Playground 103, 103td Street & the FDR, 2-3:30pm

No better way for the young-uns’ to enjoy their spring break:   Urban Park Rangers Kids Week and a primo nature discovery program for the 12 and under set!  Totally free!  (Flyer attached.)

Friday, April 29th & Saturday, April 30th:  Bike Expo New York 

Pier 36, Basketball City, 299 South Stree

A celebration of all things bicycle with a 100-plus exhibitors, an expected 100,000 visitors and even a class that’ll teach the uninitiated how to ride!  Free…  And offering a superb volunteer opportunity:  Helping attendees recycle properly and fill them in about what’s recyclable and where!  For more, contact GrowNYC’s Kathleen Crosby, 212-788-7900 ext. 29 or kcrosby@grownyc.org

Saturday, April 30th:  National Drug Take Back Day 

Precinct 13, 230 East 21st Street & Precinct 200, 120 West 82nd Street, 10am-2pm

Impossible to more safely dispose of those prescription drugs moldering on the shelves of your medicine chest than to place them in the hands of Drug Enforcement Agency agents who’ll be doing the collection!  (Yup.  Strange neither Lenox Hill Hospital (now Northwell) or Precinct 19 is participating in the effort!)

Just over the horizon: 

Monday, May 16th:  3rd Annual Esplanade Friends Benefit!

Bar Felice, 1591 First Avenue at 83rd Street

Public art and flowers and music and dancers and unrelenting pressure for swift repairs and structural upgrades and the gorgeous improvements to come on the Rockefeller U and Hospital for Special Surgery segments…  Not to mention the resurrection of the 107th Pier!  We’ve all seen changes and how vibrancy’s returning to our wonderful Esplanade.  Save the date and be a part of keeping the great new energy flowing!!  More soon…

esplanade pic

Then this edition’s abundunt miscellany:

Guess what?  Unlike 15 other NY counties, NYC has yet to ban disposal of fracking waste within our county’s borders!  If you think we need a Brooklyn/Bronx/Queens/Staten Island/Manhattan fracking waste ban… 

Seems like Albany still hasn’t driven a stake into the heart of the proposed Constitution Pipeline (think felling of  700,000 trees, destruction of more than 1,000 acres of forest and farmland and actively threatening 277 NYS waterways).  Should you think  the governor – who has the power – should terminate the project now and forever

Meanwhile…  Sanitation’s agreed to be more aggressive emptying – as in twice a day – of the epidemic of overflowing trash baskets on 86th Street!  (How about some solar compactors, merchants?!)

Check out the before and after skyline if a proposed high rise’s built in Inwood…

Existing conditions: Ft. Tryon Park.

Proposed 23-story tower from Ft. Tryon Park.

And if you support area residents/park supporters’ objections…  

Be one mighty fine Earth Day if – led by the U.S. and China – some 120 more countries sign the Paris Climate Agreement on April 22nd!

Seems like the City Council’s some closer to banning free plastic bags…  A blight that’s costing us some $10M a year to clear from streets, tree limbs, our waste water system and more. 

Wow!  Out in Park Slope, one neighbor’s sold and transferred solar panel-generated power to a another A NYC first!!!

As the Port Authority gets down to a new Bus Terminal design, they’re actually seeking We the People’s opinion!!  No assurance they’re really interested, but to weigh on their survey

Not just 10…  But the Top 10 Secrets of the UES’s own Park Avenue Armory

Don’t seem to have been a force in our hood, but the Wendels were once the most powerful landlords in all of NYC… 

Always something new and amazing to know about our great city…  i.e. Before Ellis Island was Ellis Island it was… 

From out in left field:

Yup, NASA’d really like to grow potatoes on Mars!

Animal time:

Much as we need the new Tappan Zee Bridge, no reason its construction should be killing off our great Hudson River Atlantic Sturgeon, right?  If think the National Marine Fisheries Service should be paying more attention to sturgeon morality...  

A bit on the strange-looking aide, but you shouldn’t have to be cute to be protected!  Case and point…  The pangolin:

Pangolin

Pangolin

 To give a hand to this week’s Endangered Critter #2

Welcome to the live Mother and Baby Condor Cam!  (And there’s a great backstory here…)

How about (simple) directions for a stylish knitted cowl for that furriness of yours?

bunny in cowl

Then there’s this from the great Hudson River Almanac:

4/6- Manhattan, HRM 1: We caught a lined seahorse (Hippocampus erectus) today (80 millimeters) hanging onto our crab pot at the River Project’s sampling site off Pier 26 in Hudson River Park. This was our second seahorse of the season. – Jacqueline Wu

Hippocampus-erectus

Hippocampus-erectus

[Seahorses – poor swimmers as fish go – maintain their place in the face of strong currents by wrapping their prehensile tail around stationary objects from vegetation to crab pots. – Tom Lake.]

Greenest people cast primary votes,

UGS

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Happy Honey Week at the Greenmarket, UESiders!

How best to party down honey-style??

Step #1:  Head to Market Manager Guramrit’s table for fun honey facts and her collection of stellar honey-inclusive recipes!!

Step #2:  Move directly to Ballard Honey’s table and address your newly discovered honey needs!!

Then contemplate the week ahead:

Thursday, April 7th to Saturday, April 9th: New York Antiquarian Book Fair

Park Avenue Armory, 643 Park Avenue between 66th & 67th Streets

Two hundred book dealers…  First editions of 56 Sherlock Holmes stories…  Twiggy paper dolls… Robert Frost’s walking stick…  Countless literary jewels…  A pleasure just to stroll, look and browse.  $25. Run-of-show, $40. For more

Friday, April 8th to Sunday, April 17th:  Second Annual WQXR Instrument Drive

Drop Off at Numerous Locations

Couldn’t be more true:  Put an instrument in a child’s hands and change that young person’s life! So, that old saxophone…  That flute you haven’t played for years…  Any and every gently used instrument… Let it bring joy to kids in New York and/or Newark! (But, unfortunately, no pianos.) To donate

Saturday,  April 9th:   82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

82nd Street between First and York, 9am–2pm

Compost & Clothes Collection – 9am–1pm 

At their tables will be American Seafood, Bread Alone, Rising Sun Beef, Ballard Honey, Ole Mother Hubbard, Samascott and Gajeski Farms!!

PLUS…

Valley Shepherd Creamery returns!  You remember Valley Shepherd with their insanely delicious sheep, goat and cow’s milk cheese, sheep yogurt and European style butter!

AND…

Market Manager Supremo Margaret says:  “Joining us for the first time this Saturday:  Sikking Farm and their gorgeous flowers.   This week think bouquets of iris and mixed tulips with more varieties to come as the season progresses!”

AND…

In addition to eggs, milk, chocolate milk and yogurt, Ole Mother Hubbert will once again have whole chickens! 

AND…

Rising Sun Farm will now be selling the Argyle Farm Greek and regular yogurts (formerly offered by Garden of Spices).

Some incredible line-up!!  

The only thing missing is Garden of Spices who, as many of you know, has sold their farm and moved to Alaska!  We’ll miss them, of course, but may their new home be all they dream!! 

Last but hardly least, Manager Margaret says:  “In the lead-up to Earth Day, think #PlasticCleanse, reusable produce bags (2 sizes available) and the fabulous Greenmarket tote!”  There’s even a deal on offer this week:  4 produce bags and a tote for a crazy $15!

Yes, yet another thing to check out at Manager Guramrit ‘s table! 

And a great way to take a bite out of the 10 billion plastic bags New Yorkers throw away every year!

Last week’s recycling totals:  75 lbs. batteries; 21 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 8 pairs eyes glasses. 9 compost bins;  22 bags of clothes. 

Love it when we rack up 9  bins…  Or more!!

Saturday, April 9th:  Off-Shore Wind Rally

Front of the Hilton Midtown Hotel, 1335 Sixth Avenue, 5:30pm

When media and the mayor arrive for the annual Inner Circle Show (during which they trade spoofs, this year parodying “Hamilton” with “Shamilton”), they’ll be greeted by wind power supporters in Hamilton costumes, holding faux wind turbines and singing the Dylan classic “Blowin’ in the Wind”!  Yes, Mr. Mayor, (along with a free plastic bag ban) green people are looking for an ambitious offshore wind commitment from the City on Earth Day!!  To participate

Thursday, April 14th:  City Chicken Institute – Post Easter Special – All About Eggs

Imani Community Garden, 91 Schenectady Avenue, Brooklyn, 6-7pm
And we quote, “Visit a live chicken coop and learn how to raise your own flock. Join a detailed discussion about how eggs are made, and oddities that can occur.”  For novice to poultry maven. Free.  For complete details…
chicken

Friday, Saturday & Sunday, April 15th, 16th & 17th;  5th Annual Green Festival Expo

The Javits Center, 655 West 34th Street at 11th Avenue

Tons of exhibits, new products galore and demonstrations!  All that in a building now equipped with a green roof!  Kids under 16, free.  Single day tickets, $12.  Weekend tickets, $22.  3-day tickets, $32. For more

Sunday, April 17th:  MicroRanger Competition

Museum of Natural History, Central Park West at 79th Street, 10am-5pm

The Museum’s got a new mobile game that shrinks its young participants down to micro size, then inserts these micro competitors into exhibits so they can defend biodiversity!   Prizes include games, toys and a Night at the Museum sleepover!   Wow, huh?  For the lowdown (no ticket prices listed yet)…

Then:

Thursday, April 21st:  EARTH DAY!

All Over the Globe and City

And locally:  Lenox Hill Neighborhood House, 331 East 70th Street, 6-9pm.

Organized by Council Member Kallos!  Your chance to sign up for Bicycle Island Gardening!  Stay tuned for more details!

And elsewhere in the city…  (Zoom in on the map.)

Friday, April 22nd & Saturday, April 23rd:  Fishackathon

Patagonia SoHo, 72 Greene Street, 5pm Friday and 9pm Saturday

We’re talking a gathering of coders in more than 40 cities who’re committed to ending over-fishing in the world’s oceans!  For more and to sign up

Tuesday, April 26th:  CM Garodnick’s Fathers and Family Leave – Making It Work Forum

Museum of Modern Art Cullman Education Building, 4 West 54th Street, 8-10am

Council Member Dan Garodnick – father of 2 himself – brings together leading thinkers to discuss the cultural and business factors working against fathers taking leave and how its availability can be improved.  Free.  For further details and to RSVP…  

Tuesday, April 26th:  AARP ShredFest

Manhattan Plaza, 400 & 484 West 43rd Street, 11am-2pm

YES!!  Free shredding is spreading and throughout the city… Although, in this instance, AARP’s imposing a 3 bag limit and you need to sign up in advance.  For full details and to register… (Thanks to reader Claire Campbell for the tip!)

Saturday, May 7th:  Identification Day at the Natural History Museum

Museum of Natural History, Central Park West at 79th Street, 12-4pm

That weird shell you found on the beach last summer…  That odd bug that wound up in your butterfly net…  The strange bone the dog dug up in your mother-in-law’s back yard…  Let the Museum’s scientists have a look and tell you what they really are!  Free.  

As summer approaches:

Saturday, June 18th:  NYS Tree Climbing Championship

Planting Fields Arboretum Historic Park, Oyster Bay, New York, check in at 8am

Yes, it’s for real:  Top NYS tree workers will be gathering to flaunt their skills in a series of competitive events!  The winner will be representing our state in the International Tree Climbing Championship!!  Organized by the New York State Arborists!!  For further details and to sign up… (And let us know if you do!)

Doesn’t get more miscellaneous:

Yikes!  Not in our New York but elsewhere as the article’s entitled, “Natural History, Endangered

Meanwhile:

Two more coal-fired power plants in the EU have closed!

But on American turf:

Okay, so you’re on I-40 in the middle of Arizona and there’s nothing but McD and Burger King to eat…  At least their awful fare could be antibiotic free!  (If you agree…)

Helping us to choose less chemically fraught cleaning products (or so we hope), the FDA’s launching new “Safer Choice” labeling… 

Much as we love all things Smithsonian, be nice (and appropriate) if the institution’s magazine was printed on recycled paper!  (If you think so, too…)

Moving to local focus:

Northwell Health (the newly named hospital conglomerate) is asking for us to vote on which of 3 innovative medical research projects should be funded to the tune of $100K!  For project descriptions and to cast your vote

Great that the second floor of the Frick – pending Landmarks Commission approval – will be opening its second floor!  In the meantime, we can take a virtual tour

Who knew Warhol’s first “factory” was on UES??!!  (And it’s selling price now is…??!!) 

How did Times Square get its name?

And the NYS Hike of the Month is… (scroll down, past the “Mentor a Young Turkey Hunter” piece to the article introduced by the adorable little fox below!)

mendon0416_original

Yet another potential Olympic swim champion – Kristal Lara – is training in our midst at Asphalt Green…  In the shadow of the garbage dump.

Bring on the animals:

NYC now has its second cat cafe…  #2 in Brooklyn…  #1 in Manhattan!!  

(And what is a cat cafe you ask?)

On the inexhaustible subject of cats:  Jasper the Skiing Cat has a new video!  (Then scroll down tos the “Science of Meow” video at the article’s end.)

Then move on to architect-designed cat “shelters”… 

If you think Alaskan caribou and polar bear birthing grounds should be off-limits to oil companies

When David (in miniscule dachshund form) takes on a pair of Goliaths (2 Bernese Mountain dogs)… Who’ll wind up with the pet toy?  (Thanks to animal video connoisseur Carol RInzler for the tip!) 

Could be 4 salmon-blocking dams will be gone from Oregon’s Klamath River by 2020!!

A fish that looks like a Picasso…?

Meanwhile, you can learn to fly fish for free right here in NYC!

Green even when it’s 32 degrees in April,

UGS

 

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