Monthly Archives: April 2012

Happy Frederick Law Olmstead’s birthday, UESiders!

How does it feel to be just that much greener – you clothes recycling composter you – than you were last week?

Week #1 saw the accumulation of 6 of those huge duffel bags of clothes and 5/8’s of a massive compost bin filled!!

Truly impressive, folks.

So, now that even those of us who never thought they would are now telling themselves that, yes, they’d be saving up their food scraps too if only there was an attractive, odorless container to store the stuff for 7 days…  Well, guess what? There are several and –  thanks to a Cook’s Illustrated  article spotted by reader Sosi Ermarkaryan – here’re what they are!

Underscoring that desire is this article from The Times  encouraging the use of compost (processed compost not the raw stuff) in our gardening efforts…  This rather than  releasing CO2 in peat moss.  

Do pat yourself on the back.

Then beam with pride that America’s just retaken the lead in clean energy investment!!

Long may we retain a steely grip on that first place.

For sure, we’ve got an intensely green week ahead:

Friday, April 27th:  “Permaculture – The Growing Edge” Film Screening

The Gallery Room, John Haynes Holmes House, 28 East 35th Street btween Madison and Park, 7pm

What’s permaculture, you ask?  Well, it’s a philosophy that combines ecological design with sustainable living and agriculture.   This doc presents some of the movement’s leading lights and their innovations from sheet mulching to cleaning up oil spills with mushrooms.  Suggested $5 donation.  

Saturday, April 28th:   82nd Street Greenmarket

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

With us will be American Seafood, Bread Alone, Silver Thread Vineyard, Raghoo, Gajeski, Samascott, Rising Sun Beef and Rabbits’ Run Farms.

Ballard Honey should be back.

AND, yes, our Master Knife Sharpener Barbara Hess will be on hand, too…  Honing blades and also taking recycling in hand while I’m on duty down with Recycle-O-Rama down at St. Catherine’s Park. 

AND, of course, Coordinator Shayla will present as well, guiding our composting and clothes collecting efforts.

Even so, let’s refresh all our memories as to the rules: 

YES:

  • Fruit and vegetable scraps
  • YES Non-greasy foood scraps (rice, pasta, bread, cereal, etc.)
  • Coffee grounds & filters and tea bags
  • Eggs and nut shells, fruit and vegetable pits
  • Cut and dried flowers, houseplants and potting soil

 NO-NO-NO:

  • NO Meat
  • NO Fish
  • NO Bones
  • NO Greasy food scraps
  • NO Fat or oil
  • NO Dog or cat waste
  • NO Kitty litter, coal or charcoal
  • NO Coconuts
  • NO Diseased or insect-infested houseplants
  • NO Soil
  • NO Compostable plastics

CLOTHES (in any condition):

  •  Hats
  •  Belts
  •  Linens
  •  Fabrics of all kinds
  •  Shoes

Last week’s recycling totals:  46 lbs batteries; 16 lbs #5,  Britta filters, cords, corks, CD/DVDs, jewel cases, cellphones and cartridges; 6 bags of clothes; 5/8 compost bin.

YTD (from 1/7/12) totals:  544 lbs batteries; 248 lbs #5, Britta filters, corks, cords, CDs/DVDs, jewel cases, cellphones, cartridges; 18 pairs of glasses; 6 bags of clothes; 5/8 compost bin. 

(Truly awesome.)

Saturday, April 28th:  Recycle-O-Rama – Aprez Tax Edition

St. Catherine’s Park, First Avenue between 67th and 68th, 10am – 3pm

Electronics recycling …  Paper shredding…  Clothes collection…  See you there!!

One last time…  Electronics Accepted:

•    Computers (laptops & desktops, servers, mainframes)
•    Monitors
•    Printers, scanners, fax-machines, copiers
•    Network devices (routers, hubs, modems, etc.)
•    Peripherals (keyboards, mice, cables, etc.)
•    Components (hard drives, CD-ROMs, circuit boards, power supplies, etc.)
•    TVs, VCRs, & DVD Players
•    Video-games and audio visual equipment
•    Cell phones, pagers, PDAs
•    Telecommunication (phones, answering machines, etc.)

Remember:  NO APPLIANCES.

Paper:

Please remove paper clips and spiral bindings.

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

Clothes:

Including hats, belts, fabric of all kinds and shoes…  All in any condition.

Eye glasses, too!

Thanks again, Council Member Lappin!

Saturday, April 28th: National Drug Take-Back Initiative Day 

Lenox Hill Hospital Lobby, 100 East 77th Street, 10am – 2pm

Recycling is us this Saturday.  A quick pass by East 77th and those old pill bottles will be history!  

Farther out:

Thursday, May 10th:  Art and Capitalism Lecture

Brecht Forum, 451 West Street, 7:30pm

UESider Paul Werner , noted author of “Museum, Inc.” (and 82nd Street Greenmarket shopper),  presents his most recent work ,”The Red Museum”,  and discusses the Metropolitan Museum of Art, a prime example of capitalism at work in the art world.  Tickets priced on a sliding scale of $6, $10 and $15, but free for Brecht Forum subscribers.  For more… 

Saturday, May 12 through Sunday, May 13th:  Family Sleep Over at the Bronx Zoo

2300 Southern Boulevard, The Bronx

And we quote, “Pitch your tent on historic Astor Court just steps away from the Sea Lion pool, then make your way to a delicious barbecue dinner, complete with musical entertainment…”  And that’s just for openers!  (Love the marshmallow roast!)  $200 per person all-inclusive.  For tickets and more details

Saturday, May 19th and Sunday, May 20th:  Hudson River Festival

The Hudson River from Albany to NYC

Year 3 and there are already 150 events on the festival’s rich and diverse schedule of events.  For the full rundown… 

Sunday, May 20th:  Bronx River Bike Tour

Meet at the Williamsburg Oval, 10 am

Another great outing from NYC H2O’s Matt Malina – this time co-guiding Samelys Lopez.  Explore the 18 mile length, the past and the present of our city’s only true fresh water river.  $20.  Benefitting VeloCity, the youth bicycle program.   For tickets and further details

Tuesday, May 29th – Thursday, May 31st:  Stonehenge Sunset Interval

Anywhere unobstructed on Manhattan Island and looking west…  But you know you shouldn’t ever be gazing directly at the sun, yes? 

As for this week’s miscellany:

On the eve of the eve of Recycle-O-Rama and your contemplation of that old computer you can’t bear to part with on the one in a zillion chance that your new one just might crash, Sharon Lowenstein – AKA the Organizing Goddess – has a solution for you!

Happy to say, our fairly newly-minted Assemblymember Dan Quart’s getting down on the annoying profusion of illegal signage on the UES.  Read all about his initiative to tame visual pollution...  Then send him a photo of an example extant in your hood:  danquart.nyc@gmail.com.

Feet firmly on the soap box now:

If you think the days of polar bear fur rugs should be over and done with, you can express that opinion here

Or that Dow Chemical has some nerve reviving a modified form of Agent Orange

Or that it’s pretty pathetic that Discovery Channel would run a doc on global warming without ever mentioning climate change

Okay, time to calm down:

With some the earth’s most untouched spots

And the Botany Photo of the Day

If you missed Episode 1 of PBS’s “America Revealed: Electric Nation” debut last night, you can watch it (and catch up with the series which will be airing Wednesdays and Thursdays at 10pm) online…  

Got a great fishing-related photo in your album?  Then enter it in Trout Unlimited’s Best Angler Photo Contest!

Meanwhile, the great people at TreesNY have entered themselves in Odwalla’s fruit tree competition (fruit trees to be planted in NYC), so cast your vote if you’d like them to win

Strange that we’d never noticed the sea of black roofs visible north, south and west from the Roosevelt Island Tram…  Good thing that our city’s got its Cool Roofs Program up and running again this year…  Let’s get that free white paint on those suckers!  

Totally off the beaten path is this video of the young Brooklyn native who’s reviving the art of pizza dough throwing

Oh, those animals:

Yes, folks, cats can definitely beat their auto feeders into submission…! 

It was covered in snow from that Nor’easter earlier this week but the soon-to-be hawk parents hung tough on their nest…  Hatching imminent and it’ll be captured by Cornell’s live redtailed hawk stream!

They’ve got a camera on a blue heron nest as well!  (You’ll hear crickets and frogs if you check in after dark…)

Yup, we’re talking bats again…  Pretty darned amazing thermal images of little, furry bats at rest in deep, dark cave

Strange to tell, there are at least 10 famous whales… 

Just when you thought you’d finished voting for things this week…  Hippity-hop to the Bronx Zoo’s site and vote in the Adora-Poll for the cutest zoo baby!

We close with another excerpt from the Hudson River Almanac:

4/17 – Manhattan, HRM 3.5: Things began slowly on this morning’s New York City Audubon Bryant Park Bird Walk. We had the resident gray catbird, a hermit thrush, but not much else.  Then, just after 8am, sparrows started popping out of shrubs and dropping from the trees to hop on the lawn and glean for insects. First two swamp sparrows, then white-throated sparrows, song sparrows, a field sparrow, chipping sparrows, a savannah sparrow, and an eastern towhee. We also had at least two brown thrashers flying back and forth high in the London plane trees, as well as a couple of ruby-crowned kinglets and a yellow-bellied sapsucker.    –     Gabriel Willow

Incredible there’s such an abundance of wildlife at 42nd and Sixth!

In spite of everything, the world just will be green,

UGS 

 

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Happy, Happy Earth Week, UESiders!

Happy weekly compost collection!!  Happy weekly clothing collection!!  Happy return of our Master Knife Sharpener!! 

Happy Spring SAFE Disposal Event!!

Happy next weekend’s Recycle-O-Rama!!  

Happy new UES Landmarked Structure  #127

  Barbizon Hotel for Women
140 East 63rd Street
Built: 1927-28
Architect: Murgatroyd & Ogden

Thanks to all who wrote the Landmarks Commission!

(To read more about this distinguished building.)

Then bask in the green glow of the next 7 days:

Saturday, April 21st:   82nd Street Greenmarket

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

With us will be American Seafood, Bread Alone, Raghoo, Gajeski, Samascott, Rising Sun Beef and Rabbits’ Run Farms.  (Ballard Honey is taking the week off.)

And, as they promised, Silver Thread Vineyard will be back at their table.

AND, as we’ve said, Master Knife Sharpener Barbara Hess will also be returning. 

AND, you bet, our great coupon event continues:

PRINT OUT THOSE COUPONS. FOLKS!!!

**82nd STREET APRIL COUPONS**

AND  the waiting has now come to an end:

COMPOST & CLOTHES COLLECTION BEGINS!!

Joining the great Saturday market crew, riding herd on our collection and insuring its excellence will be Compost Coordinator Shayla. 

Here’re the “organic matter” you can bring:

YES:

  • Fruit and vegetable scraps
  • YES Non-greasy foood scraps (rice, pasta, bread, cereal, etc.)
  • Coffee grounds & filters and tea bags
  • Eggs and nut shells, fruit and vegetable pits
  • Cut and dried flowers, houseplants and potting soil

 NO-NO-NO:

  • NO Meat
  • NO Fish
  • NO Bones
  • NO Greasy food scraps
  • NO Fat or oil
  • NO Dog or cat waste
  • NO Kitty litter, coal or charcoal
  • NO Coconuts
  • NO Diseased or insect-infested houseplants
  • NO Soil
  • NO Compostable plastics

(Store in fridge or freezer to reduce/eliminate odors.)

As for clothes: 

  •  Hats
  •  Belts
  •  Linens
  •  Fabrics of all kinds
  •  Shoes

  ALL IN ANY CONDITION.

Last week’s recycling totals:  43 lbs batteries and 14 lbs #5,  Britta filters, cords, corks, CD/DVDs, jewel cases, cellphones and cartridges and 2 pairs of glasses.

YTD (from 1/7/12) totals:  598 lbs batteries; 232 lbs #5, Britta filters, corks, cords, CDs/DVDs, jewel cases, cellphones, cartridges and 18 pairs of glasses. 

(Another  great Earth Week gift to our Mother Earth!)  

Saturday, April 21st, 10am – 7pm and Sunday, April 22nd, 11am – 6pm:  2012 Green Festival

Javitts Center North, Eleventh Avenue between 39th & 40 Streets

Organic food, live music and, more to the point, a Green Marketplace featuring products and services, DIY green workshops, lectures from environmental notables and much more.  For tickets – from $10 – $49 – and further details

SUNDAY, APRIL 22nd:  EARTH DAY!

Sunday, April 22nd:   NYC SAFE Disposal Event

Union Square, 10sm – 4pm

What better day than to clear out aging, unused and potentially harmful items from paint to pesticides to antifreeze, motor oil, thermometers, glue and electronics?  For the full – and it is impressively long – list

This is truly fabulous, folks!  (And see if your super’s got some of this stuff mouldering in basement!)

Sunday, April 22nd:  The Making of Planet Earth

BBC America, Time Warner Channel 106

More fabulous BBC nature programming and narrated by Dan Stevens (“Downtown Abbey’s” Matthew.  For those of you who haven’t seen Jimmy Fallon’s great send-up of the series).

Mondays, April 23rd through May 21st:  Monday Evening Audubon Spring Central Park Migration Walks

Meet at 72nd Street and Central Park West, 5:30 – 7pm

Witness the beauty and spectacle of spring migration as songbirds follow the great Atlantic Flyway north with the great Gabriel Willow as your guide.  Limited to 15.  $95 for the series of 5 walks.  To register… 

Next week’s just as action-packed:

Saturday, April 28th:  Recycle-O-Rama – Aprez Tax Edition

St. Catherine’s Park, First Avenue between 67th and 68th, 10am – 3pm

Electronics recycling …  Paper shredding…  Clothes collection…  It’s still Earth Day here on the UES!

Please print out those posters/flyers and get up in your buildings and into friends’ hands!

Electronics Accepted:

•    Computers (laptops & desktops, servers, mainframes)
•    Monitors
•    Printers, scanners, fax-machines, copiers
•    Network devices (routers, hubs, modems, etc.)
•    Peripherals (keyboards, mice, cables, etc.)
•    Components (hard drives, CD-ROMs, circuit boards, power supplies, etc.)
•    TVs, VCRs, & DVD Players
•    Video-games and audio visual equipment
•    Cell phones, pagers, PDAs
•    Telecommunication (phones, answering machines, etc.)

Remember:  NO APPLIANCES.

Paper:

Please remove paper clips and spiral bindings.

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

Clothes:

Including hats, belts, fabric of all kinds and shoes…  All in any condition.

Eye glasses, too!

Thanks, Council Member Lappin!

Saturday, April 28th: National Drug Take-Back Initiative Day 

Lenox Hill Hospital Lobby, 100 East 77th Street, 10am – 2pm

No question, a whole lot of recycling going on…  But how great to be able to get rid of those ancient prescriptions you’re far too environmentally evolved to flush away or rinse down a drain!  

Saturday, April 28th:  New York Rooftop Camping Event

A Rooftop in Brooklyn, 4pm – 8pm Camping Workshop, Camping Overnight

Yet another unique celebration of Obscura Day…  A night spent under the sky, five floors up, in the heart of Brooklyn.  Organized by Bivouac New York.  $50 with dinner included.  For more and tickets…  

Saturday, May 5th:  Bike Share Open House

Grand Central Library, 135 East 46th Street, between Lexington & Third

It’s coming…  It’s almost here…  So here’s your chance to visit with Department of Transportation staff and check out the Bike Share Bikes coming to a Bike Share Station near you.  There’ll be a bicycle giveaway, too!  For more on the program

Saturday, May 19th:  Birding by Canoe in Constitution Marsh

Constitution Marsh Audubon Center & Sanctuary, Cold Spring, New York, 9am – 4:30pm

Paddle through this spectacular 271-acre tidal marsh with naturalists  Gabriel Willow and Marsh’s Eric Lind.  Observe marsh birds up close with possible sightings that include Virginia rails, spotted sandpipers, and Louisiana water thrushes, warblers and bald eagles!  Limited to 12.  $90 with travel by van included.  To sign up

Way out there:

Wednesday, June 6th:  Reimagining the Waterfront – Design Ideas Competition Exhibition

Museum of the City of New York,  1220 Fifth Avenue at 101st Street, 7 days a week, 10am – 6pm 

Reimagining our Upper East Side waterfront, that is…  Our Upper East Side Esplanade.  Very different visions by the were 90 some entrants from all over the world with the winner’s laurel bestowed on Joseph Wood of New Jersey!  Adults: $10; Seniors and students: $6; Families: $20; Members and children 12 and under:  Free)  For details…  

On to some righteous miscellany:

Think selling McDonald’s in hospitals isn’t such a great idea?

Or after this past non-winter the American Meteorological Society should update its official statement on climate change

Or that the threatened Menhaden – an essential link in the ocean food chain – should be given some breathing room?

In that regard, check out this gorgeous photo of glacial run-off in Iceland:

Facebook people:  Vote for the best Green Roof…  One of the contenders being in NYC! 

Be nice if this mertensia virginica were growing on that roof:

 

Three cheers for the government of Quebec that’s decided there’ll be no fracking while a thorough study is done… A study that’ll include visits to heavily fracked areas of Ohio, Pennsylvania and New York State.

Meanwhile, up there in the north of our state a Canadian company’s proposing to frack with propane!

Believe it or not but as gasoline prices climb, there are people out there in America stealing used restaurant oil…  Yes, grease rustling is on the rise!

This while Singapore’s fabricating what they’re calling “The Forest of the Future“…

And our mayor’s adding to his helicopter collection

Meanwhile: Attention, boat owners!  Going Coastal’s now offering free pump-out services at several locations along NY shores.   Pretty great.

And check out NYState’s download-able 2012 Camping Guide! 

So, how about some animals:

Two tense days at the UES’s Engine 22 Ladder 13 Firehouse until Carlow, their mascot kitten, was found

The world’s been needing an accurate emperor penguin survey and now it’s got one…  Make that 600,000!

And we’ve got many times that more eels in area waters this year!

Yes, ducks play catch

Ummm…  A baby snow leopard… 

Only right that we close with another excerpt from the Hudson River Almanac:

4/7 – Manhattan, HRM 11: Further evidence of the renewed ecology and cleanliness of the Hudson River in New York City – a muskrat I saw last week swimming and landing on the city shoreline near the Little Red Lighthouse underneath the George Washington Bridge. The muskrat (Ondatra zibethicus) is a medium-sized semi-aquatic native rodent and was a source of both food and fur to the native Algonquian people who lived here before the Europeans arrived 400 years ago. The meat is said to be tender and similar in taste to duck. In the early twentieth century, coats made of muskrat fur were labeled as “Hudson seal fur.” Growing up to two feet in length, they are smaller than beavers that can also be found in this region.     – Mark Gluck

And, of course, those of us of a certain age will recall “Muskrat Love”…

This Earth Week, may we be intensely green,

UGS

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Happiness reigns, UESiders!!

Yes, compost collection!  Doesn’t get any better in our eco world!  Congratulations to us!

Congrats, too, to the deserving winner of New Yorkers for Parks’ 2012  Daffodil Photo Contest, Megan Kimmins for the lovely display at the Snug Harbor Cultural Center and Botanic Garden she captured:

A great way to head into the coming week:

Saturday, April 14th:   82nd Street Greenmarket

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

With us will be American Seafood, Bread Alone, Raghoo, Gajeski, Samascott, Rising Sun Beef and Rabbits’ Run Farms. 

And, yes, Ballard Honey is back!!

With spring coming on, we’re encouraging all our vendors to let us know what new they’ll have on offer…  This Saturday,  Rabbits’ Run lists:  “pork chops, boneless cutlets, smaller loin end roasts, tomato basil sausage, green onion sausage, spare ribs, country ribs, salad greens and fresh herbs.”

In case you’re curious as to the origin of their eggs:

BETTER NOT FORGET OUR MONTH-LONG SPECIAL EVENT!!!!!!

PRINT OUT YOUR COUPONS. FOLKS!!!

**82nd STREET APRIL COUPONS**

Last week’s recycling totals:  41 lbs batteries and 15 lbs #5,  Britta filters, cords, corks, CD/DVDs, jewel cases, cellphones and cartridges.

YTD (from 1/7/12) totals:  555 lbs batteries; 218 lbs #5, Britta filters, corks, cords, CDs/DVDs, jewel cases, cellphones, cartridges and 16 pairs of glasses. 

(Amazing.)

Sunday, April 15th:  Walking Tour of Combined Sewage Overflows (CSO) along the East River Blueway

 East River Esplanade below the Brooklyn Bridge, on the water near South and Dover Streets, 1 – 3pm

Yes, you read the title of this outing right…  Led by Lower East Side Ecology’s Dan Tainow, you’ll emerge from the jaunt in full command of the gruesomeness that ensues when NYC gets more than a half-inch of rain.  Free.  To register

Now till fall, Tuesdays,  3- 6pm, First Saturdays of the Month, 10am – 12pm:  Visit the Hell’s Kitchen Farm Project Visit and Work Days

Metro Baptist Church Rooftop, 410 West 40th Street 

Truly, where there’s will and ingenuity there’s a way…  Witness the second year of a garden that’s fed hundreds and planted in small, blue kids’ wading pools.  Needless to say, great for the whole family.  For more

Then it’s Earth Weekend 2012:

Check out four of the fun events in Manhattan… 

Saturday, April 21st:  82nd Street Greenmarket

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

At their tables be American Seafood, Bread Alone, ballard Honey, Raghoo, Gajeski, Samascott, Rising Sun Beef and Rabbits’ Run Farms. 

AND YOU GUESSED IT…

COMPOST COLLECTION BEGINS!!

Here are the rules for what you can bring:

YES:

  • Fruit and vegetable scraps
  • YES Non-greasy foood scraps (rice, pasta, bread, cereal, etc.)
  • Coffee grounds & filters and tea bags
  • Eggs and nut shells, fruit and vegetable pits
  • Cut and dried flowers, houseplants and potting soil

 NO WAY:

  • NO Meat
  • NO Fish
  • NO Bones
  • NO Greasy food scraps
  • NO Fat or oil
  • NO Dog or cat waste
  • NO Kitty litter, coal or charcoal
  • NO Coconuts
  • NO Diseased or insect-infested houseplants
  • NO Soil
  • NO Compostable plastics

Store in fridge or freezer to reduce/eliminate odors.

Or check out charcoal filter-equiped counter top or floor bins like the ECO… 

Really, folks, we struggled to get this widely, deeply desired service for our market and ONLY by following the rules above will we keep it!

Saturday, April 21st, 10am – 7pm and Sunday, April 22nd, 11am – 6pm:  2012 Green Festival

Javitts Center North, Eleventh Avenue between 39th & 40 Streets

Organic food, live music and, more to the point, a Green Marketplace featuring products and services, DIY green workshops, lectures from environmental notables and much more.  For tickets – from $10 – $49 – and further details

SUNDAY, APRIL 22nd:  EARTH DAY!

One more time, check out four of the fun Earth Day events happening in Manhattan…   Celebrate our planet!!  Get yourself outside and revel in it!!

And then:

Saturday, April 28th:  Recycle-O-Rama – Aprez Tax Edition

St. Catherine’s Park, First Avenue between 67th and 68th, 10am – 3pm

Electronics recycling …  Paper shredding…  Clothes collection…  Our own slightly delayed UES Earth Day Celebration!

Get those posters/flyers up in your buildings and into friends’ hands!

Electronics Accepted:

•    Computers (laptops & desktops, servers, mainframes)
•    Monitors
•    Printers, scanners, fax-machines, copiers
•    Network devices (routers, hubs, modems, etc.)
•    Peripherals (keyboards, mice, cables, etc.)
•    Components (hard drives, CD-ROMs, circuit boards, power supplies, etc.)
•    TVs, VCRs, & DVD Players
•    Video-games and audio visual equipment
•    Cell phones, pagers, PDAs
•    Telecommunication (phones, answering machines, etc.)

Remember:  NO APPLIANCES.

Paper:

Please remove paper clips and spiral bindings.

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

Clothes:

Including hats, belts, fabric of all kinds and shoes…  All in any condition.

Eye glasses, too!

And we thank Council Member Lappin for making it all possible!

Saturday, April 28th: National Drug Take-Back Initiative Day 

Lenox Hill Hospital Lobby, 100 East 77th Street, 10am – 2pm

En route to Recycle-O-Rama or on the way home, get rid of those ancient prescriptions you’d never, ever flush away or rinse down a drain!  

Saturday, April 28th and Sunday, April 29th:  New Amsterdam Bike Show

275 Hudson Street, Manhattan, 10am – 7pm

And we quote, “The best of roadbikes, dutch bikes, sweetbikes”…  Yes, feed your bike lust.  $15 for a ticket good for both days and enters you to win 2 tickets to Amsterdam, Holland.  For more and to buy those tickets

On the horizon:

Saturday, June 2nd:  Riverkeeper Hudson River Sweep

Length of the Hudson River

Since 1978, volunteers power at this annual event have removed some 400 tons of debris from our great Hudson’s banks from Albany to NYC…  And that’s just one of the many projects included in this wonderful event.  For further details

Whew.  Now for some miscellany:

As residents of the city that’s given the world the High Line, who’d know better than we what enjoyment the Tappan Zee Bridge could/should provide once its replacement is built, so submit those big ideas!

On the action score, if you think BP shouldn’t be able to deduct their oil spill expenditures from their taxes

Or that pesticides shouldn’t be excluded from clean water legislation

Or that our city’s Department of Environmental Protection should follow through on its promise to build a pedestrian bridge linking the two parts of the Croton Aqueduct Trail presently bisected by the Major Deegan!

As if we didn’t already know that New Jersey Governor Christie’s cancellation of a new Hudson River tunnel wasn’t a retrogressive move, now it also seems to have been considerably motivated by a desire/political need to feed the state’s near bankrupt transportation fund and keep its gas tax low (it’s second lowest in the U.S.A.).  Hummmmm…. 

Meanwhile, energy’s building out there for a revival of the Fulton Street Fish Market

But let’s talk a fantastic development in the present… i.e. A huge, 100,000 square foot roof top farm abuilding at the Brooklyn Navy Yard…  Joining the 6 commerical roof top farms already in existence throughout the city…  With more to come!

Totally exciting, too, is the move to rooftop gardens on residential buildings…  One of the pioneers being Upper East Side resident and East 93rd Street Association principal, Tara Reddi!!  

In honor of Earth Day, Place Matters’ choice for their “Place of the Month” is Inwood Park which among its many attributes contains remnants of the original forest that covered Manhattan!  For more of Inwood’s history and fabulous features… 

One more reason to want to travel to France…  The Domaine de Chaumont-sur Loire, the first art center devoted to the relationship between artistic creation and nature

more warm and fuzzy than striking Botany Picture of the Day…  With some pretty unbotanical (but funny) commentary below.

We know quinoa tastes good and is good for us and here’s just how good

Totally off the beaten track, but for those with kids entertaining a medical career, the NYC Health & Hospitals Corporation has a new, interesting scholarship plan

Even further afield, a cinema serving beer is opening on the Upper West Side

Yes, folks we know the world’s moving in a green direction when Williams-Sonoma starts featuring chicken coops – and very nice chicken coops they are – in their catalogue! 

On to the subject animals proper:

Happily none near us, but the interactive map from Zero Extinction  helps pinpoint where animals need defending…

Like – down Texas way – the imperiled feline, the Gulf Coast Jaguarundi.  (We say it’s cute, too!)

But here on the UES, sad to note that rat poison is felling some of our fabulous red-tailed hawks

Courtesy of Cornell’s great Bird Cam, Mother and Father Blue Heron land and preen on their nest… 

And the amazing video of the week:  “The Beauty of Pollination”…    (The companion TED lecture is excellent as well.)

Getting to be a bit of habit including observations from the Hudson River Almanac…  But some habits are really good:

3/29 – Manhattan, HRN- 7-5.   This will have to be among the more interesting winters for which to try and sort out what and how many birds that normally don’t successfully winter in our region did this time or at least made it into February.         – Tom Fiore

Could be the tiniest kitten ever

But, this week, returning to things French, we close with Henri Deux, existential cat, star of Paw de Deux… 

Our UES trees are greener every day,

UGS

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Yes, happy Easter and Passover!

Let’s celebrate with one wonderful video courtesy of reader Nell Semel…  Moving and clever and pretty much the ultimate in recycling!

So, how does NYC  – for all its greatness – measure up to, say, the recycling part of that trifecta?

Well, since Mayor Bloomberg took office and all-but ended our recycling program on the basis of – as he saw it – cost-ineffectiveness…  Then reinstated it once our landfill expenses began an ever-more precipitious climb…  Our rate has actually declined from 20% of all that’s possible to recycle to just 15% today.

Sigh.

Slovenia recycles at a 37% rate.

Still and even though we’re not the best in Manhattan, the UES is in the mid-20th percentile.  Check us and the competition out…  

Then recall the totals on this week’s email…  Big numbers we Upper Green Siders have recycled in just 3 months!

A moment of well-deserved pride…

Now on to the mighty fine holiday/spring break week ahead:

Saturday, April 7th:   82nd Street Greenmarket

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

At their tables will be American Seafood, Bread Alone, Raghoo, Gajeski, Samascott, Rising Sun Beef and Rabbits’ Run Farms. 

Don’t worry!   Silver Thread Vineyard says they’ll be returning later this month.

DON’T FORGET OUR MONTH-LONG SPECIAL EVENT:

PRINT OUT YOUR COUPONS. FOLKS!!!

**82nd STREET APRIL COUPONS**

(Personal recommendations for coupon use:  Rabbits’ Run’s breakfast radishes, salad greens and lavender hand cream, Rising Sun’s steaks and ground beef, Raghoo’s whole chickens,  Bread Alone’s bagettes and oatmeal cookies, any of Samascott’s apples and cider donuts, all of Gajeski’s vegs and anything American Seafood’s caught!) 

And on GrowNYC’s Greenmarket shopping list:

Apples
Baby spinach
Brisket
Ham
Horseradish root
Lamb
Paprika (for deviled eggs)
Parsley
Ramps
Scallions
Short ribs

Last week’s recycling totals:  45 lbs batteries and 7 lbs #5,  Britta filters, cords, corks, CD/DVDs, jewel cases, cellphones and cartridges and 6 pairs of glasses .

YTD (from 1/7/12) totals:  514 lbs batteries; 203 lbs #5, Britta filters, corks, cords, CDs/DVDs, jewel cases, cellphones and cartridges and 10 pairs of glasses. 

(Could hardly move the bag of batteries!!)

Saturday, April 7th:  Hell’s Kitchen Farm Project Spring Kick-Off

Metro Baptist Church, 410 West 40th Street, 2-4pm

You may recall that last year – Year One of the Project – we participated in bucket-brigading several tons of earth up on Metro Baptist’s roof.  Well, it’s light volunteer work of planting and seeding the HK gardeners are in need of this year.  (Of course, everything they grow goes to local pantries!)  For more

Tuesday, April 10th:  Olmstead and America’s Urban Parks

Horticultural Society of New York, 148 West 37th Street, 6:30 – 8:30pm

A one-hour documentary covering  Olmsted and his work, followed by a panel including biographer Justin Martin, Sara Cedar Miller, official historian and photographer for the Central Park Conservancy, and Charles McKinney, principal urban designer at the New York City’s Department of Parks & Recreation.  Free.  For more and to register

So much coming up soon:

Monday, April 16th – Saturday, April 22nd: EARTH WEEK

Events and celebrations throughout NYC, among them..

Thursday, April 19th:  2012 Wild & Scenic Film Festival

Peter J. Sharp Theater at Symphony Space, 2537 Broadway at 95th Street, 7 – 9pm

Viewed by many as the largest cinema festival of its kind, this year’s event benefits Riverkeeper, that wonderful guardian of our Hudson’s ecological health, and includes live action and animation looks at the natural world.  Tickets in advance:  Adults $10, Children $5.  Day of festival:  $15.  For more and ticket purchase… 

Saturday, April 21st:  Earth Day Recycling

P.S. 87, 77th Street between Columbus & Amsterdam, 12 – 5pm

Another chance for those needing to purge electronics and fabric/clothes before our own Recycle-O-Rama.  And please put your West Side friends in the know.  For more information contact Council Member Gale A. Brewer: 212-873-0282 or jtwine@synerjy.org at Upper West Side Recycling.

Electronics collected:

Computers (laptops & desktops, servers, mainframes)
•    Monitors
•    Printers, scanners, fax-machines, copiers
•    Network devices (routers, hubs, modems, etc.)
•    Peripherals (keyboards, mice, cables, etc.)
•    Components (hard drives, CD-ROMs, circuit boards, power supplies, etc.)
•    TVs, VCRs, & DVD Players
•    Video-games and audio visual equipment
•    Cell phones, pagers, PDAs
•    Telecommunication (phones, answering machines, etc.)

Household batteries –  ONLY WITH TAPED ENDS.

NO WALLPHONES.  NO APPLIANCES.

Clothes/Fabrics:  Clothing (wearable. unwearable), shoes, blankets, sheets, towels.  NO CARPETING.

Monday, April 23rd:  Space Shuttle Enterprise Flies Into JFK

And there she’ll remain while her pavillion on the Intrepid is being built, completion slated for the fall 2012.  Follow progress at NYSkies  and at the Intrepid ‘s site

Saturday, April 28th:  Recycle-O-Rama – Aprez Tax Edition

St. Catherine’s Park, First Avenue between 67th and 68th, 10am – 3pm

Electronics recycling …  Paper shredding…  Clothes collection…  And right on your UES doorstep!

Electronics Accepted:

•    Computers (laptops & desktops, servers, mainframes)
•    Monitors
•    Printers, scanners, fax-machines, copiers
•    Network devices (routers, hubs, modems, etc.)
•    Peripherals (keyboards, mice, cables, etc.)
•    Components (hard drives, CD-ROMs, circuit boards, power supplies, etc.)
•    TVs, VCRs, & DVD Players
•    Video-games and audio visual equipment
•    Cell phones, pagers, PDAs
•    Telecommunication (phones, answering machines, etc.)

Remember:  NO APPLIANCES.

Paper:

Please remove paper clips and spiral bindings.

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

Clothes:

Including hats, belts, fabric of all kinds and shoes…  All in any condition.

Thanks for making our Recycle-O-Ramas possible, Council Member Lappin!

Saturday, April 28th: National Drug Take-Back Initiative Day 

Lenox Hill Hospital Lobby, 100 East 77th Street, 10am – 2pm

Know you’ve been yearning to clear out those ancient prescriptions you’re way too environmentally hip to ever flush away or rinse down a drain!  

Saturday, April 28th:  Old Croton Aqueduct Bike Tour

Beginning at the 42nd Street Library, 1pm

Can’t get too much of a good thing so as on this past April 1st, bike  a manageable portion of the erstwhile route of the Croton Aquaduct – the aquaduct that once supplied Manhattan’s water – from the 42nd Street Library to Highbridge, under the leadership of NYC/H2O’s Matt Malina and Hannah Riseley-White.  $20.  For more and tickets

Saturday, April 28th:  Camera Obsura Day

All over NYC

What is Camera Obscura Day?  The answer and we quote:  “Camera Obscura Day is an international celebration of unusual places, full of expeditions, back room tours and explorations of the hidden wonders in your own hometown.”  We’re favoring the scavenger hunt at the Met.  For events and details… 

Way, way out there, but so great:

Opening Friday May 25th:  Beer Here – Brewing New York’s History

New York Historical Society, 170 Central Park West at 77th Street

Once Yorkville and beer were synonymous…  Now, one would have to be of a certain age to connect the name Ruppert with that once fabled brewery.  Nothing like an exhibition that’s all about the UES!  For museum days, hours and ticket prices…  

Miscellany…  And let’s get the icky stuff out of the way:

Two excellent opportunities to weigh in on the MTS:

1.  A request for comment on Vision 2020: NYC Comprehensive Waterfront Plan.  (Tell me again why it’s a good idea putting garbage facilities on that same waterfront?)

#2. The Army Corps of Engineers granted Congresswoman Maloney’s request for an extended MTS comment period.  Obviously, if you haven’t already written, PLEASE do so now.   Council Member Lappin’s newsletter gives where and what to write…

Hate (loathe/despise/excoriate/regard with contempt) the astonishingly filthy newracks defacing so many of our city’s streets?  Then help CIVITAS – long-time activists on this score – turn the spotlight on this blight

Think Mark Zuckerberg should have at least one woman on Facebook’s board? 

Or that budget cuts shouldn’t have the USDA firing 1,000 people inspecting the chicken we eat?

Or that Borough President Stringer and the City Council should reign in NYU’s expansion plans

You did hear about the explosion at a  natural gas compressor station – compressing gas produced by fracking – in Pennsylvania?

On the upswing now:

In case you missed this last Sunday’s Times’ article on the participatory budgeting experiment in 4 of NYC’s  Council Districts…  Really interesting.

Then scroll to the bottom right of Page 2 of Odwalla’s Plant a Tree contest and vote for our very own FruiTrees/Trees New York! 

So our markets are moving into their 6th year now…  The blink of an eye when one considers, say, the Turin Market…  Going strong since the Middle Ages!

Two amazing Flowers of the Day from this past week…  A Hawaiian hibiscus…  And California native, Triteleia Lilacina.

Add to that a pretty gorgeous Green Roof of the Week

Meanwhile, in whose universe are waste-to-energy plants “controversial“?  And if the process found favor with our mayor, why is he so insistent on building this MTS?

So much for the renewable energy nay-sayers…  Snow-bound Minnesota is moving toward providing 100% of their energy needs with wind and solar!

Meanwhile, on a not so grand scale, a combo solar/wind/tidal demonstration project will be built on Randall’s Island.

From Yogi Berra to artisans…  There’s some great new reading on, about and by New Yorkers

Bring on the critters:

Yes, we know…  We know…  We do have a thing about bats.  And, yes, you’re busy, but you do have time to ask for research monies needed to end the deadly White-Nose Syndome that’s killing so many of these useful creatures.

Why does it make perfect sense that Norway’s just knighted a penguin?

A genius kitten

Eat your hearts out, folks, but yours truly has held a baby pygmy hippo just like this one in her very own arms! 

We close with another entry from the Hudson River Almanac:

3/24 – Manhattan, HRM 3-1: Walking south in the Hudson River Park I once again spotted brant geese. The first group of nearly 20 was enjoying eating the algae growing on the old pilings just south of Pier 57. Another 10 were happily eating algae from the rocks of the rip-rap on the south side of Pier 52. I saw three more eating algae from the pilings by the air shaft for the Holland Tunnel…   – Caleb Davison

Better have been green algae,

UGS

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