Greetings, UESiders!

Another week, another tasting…  This time,  olive oil.

Who knew that when quality olive oil’s swirled in a small glass and warmed by the heat of one’s hand, it gives off the subtle scent of grass after a summer rain?

That when you take a tiny sip of that warm oil, the back of your throat experiences a mild but distinct burning sensation…  Happily caused by the abundant, healthy anti-oxidents contained in the oil?

That all oils – from Olive to Wesson to Crisco –  contain the same calorie count?  (While, of course, what’s in those oils is vastly different and, in many, non-olive cases, is vastly bad!)

That “lite” oil is actually fat from various cringeable sources – with maybe a touch of olive oil –  that’s been heated, treated, laced with chemicals and has the very same calorie count as non-lite oils?!

That there’re a ton of situations in which olive oil can be substituted for butter?  (Had both a cake and mashed potatoes made with olive oil last night and they were great!)

That the different coloration of kalamata olives is caused by their position on the olive tree relative to the sun?

That the world champion, most gold-medal-winning olive oils are Greek and pressed by Gaea…  The olive oil our Greenmarket managers use in their cooking  demos! 

Only the best for our shoppers!

May the week ahead be even better for all Americans:

Friday, October 4th:  NYSkies Astronomy Seminar

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

Star Master John Pazmino’s topic on this 56th anniversary of the launch of Sputnik:   “Russia in Space – The Past Experience, the Future Explored”!  Guest speaker will be Anatoly Zak, Russian journalist and expert on the Soviet space program.  Free.

Saturday, October 6th:  The 9th Annual Gypsyfest!

DromNYC, 85 Avenue A, 7pm

The last night of a two-week festival of gypsy music (from  India, Macedonia, France, the Netherlands and U.S.) featuring the Rhythm of Rajasthan…  Rajasthan being the birthplace of the genre.   For more and tickets

Saturday, October 5th:   82nd Street Greenmarket 

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

Compost & Clothing Collection – 9am – 1pm 

On hand will be American Seafood, Bread Alone,  Samascott, Gajeski, Cherry Lane, Feather Ridge, Rising Sun Beef and Rabbits’ Run Farms.

AND…  Happy to say, you’ll find our  Master Knife Sharpener at her table and ready to get your cutlery up to speed!

Last Week’s Recycling Totals:  45 lbs batteries;  22 lbs Britta fillters, cords, corks, CD/DVDs/jewel cases/cellphones and ink cartridges; 1 pair glasses;  25 bags of clothes;   8 compost bins.

YTD (from 1/5/13):  1,551 lbs batteries; 931 lbs #5, Britta filters, corks, cords/CDs/DVDs/jewel cases/cellphones and ink cartridges; 137 pairs of eye glasses; 584 bags of clothes; 209 compost bins.

ANOTHER 8 compost bin week!

Saturday, October 5th & Sunday, October 6th:  41st Annual Gracie Square Art Show

East End Avenue between 84th to 88th Street , 10am-5pm

More than 100 artists will be featured in the city’s premier open air art show..  Also includes marvelous activities for kids.   Proceeds make possible maintenance, improvements and Schurz Park’s wonderful events.  Free.  For full details

Saturday, October 5th:  15th Annual Czech Street Festival

Bohemian National Hall, 321 East 73rd Street, 12pm – whenever

Live music, Czech food, children’s performances, workshops, souvenirs and plenty more!  For info

Sunday, October 6th:  92nd Street Greenmarket

92nd Street and First Avenue, 9am-3pm

Compost Collection 9am-1pm

At their tables will be Atlantic Seafood, Gonzales, Stannart, Norwich Meadows and Phillips Farms, Bread Alone, Meredith’s Bakery and the great Stellar Cooks (back and fully recovered from last week’s illnesses)!

Lucky us that the Wager Cider Mill will be on hand the next few Sundays.  Really good apples, cider and peaches.  But the concord grapes?  Spectacular!! 

Last week’s recycling totals:  30 lbs batteries; 3 lbs  Britta filters, cords, corks, CD/DVDs/jewel cases/cellphones and ink cartridges; 2 1/2 compost bins.

Weeks 8/18, 8/25 & 9/1 Compost Totals:  TBA

YTD (from 6/23/13):  162 lbs batteries;  94 lbs Britta fillters, cords, corks, CD/DVDs/jewel cases/cellphones and ink cartridges;  7 pairs eye glasses; 28 1/2 compost bins; 16,530 lbs  shredded paper.

WAY AHEAD OF LAST YEAR!

Monday, October 7th:  Daryl Hawk Lecture

Explorer’s Club 46 East 70th Street, 7pm

The noted documentarian reflects  on his solo, 3,000 mile expedition to the  remote South American Altoplano where Argentina and Chile meet…  A land of  18,000 foot Andean peaks.   Cherry-on-Top:  A good, long gander at the stunning Explorer Club interior.  Members free.  Non-members, $15.  Students with valid ID, $5.

Commencing Monday, October 7th:  Bluegrass Workshop

92nd Street Y,  Room S250, Second Floor, South Building,  Lexington Avenue at 92nd Street,  8-9pm

Always wanted to play that great American roots music in the  mode of Bill Monroe, Earl Scruggs and/or The Foggy Mountain Boys?  No problem if you can already read music and play basic guitar chords (G clef).  Workshop runs  13 sessions for $410.  For more…  Or call 212-415-5580.

Tuesday, October 8th:   NY State of Health – What You Need to Know About Health Care Reform

Lighthouse International, 111 East 59th Street, 6pm

Organized by a host of area electeds, community boards and non-profits, it’s a perfect opportunity to determine your eligibillity, learn about plans and financial assistance.  You’ll need to RSVP or call 212-490-9535.

Coming soon:

Commencing Sunday, October 13th:  Central Park Zoo Education for Kids 

Fifth Avenue & 64th Street

A score and more of family friendly events kicking off with “All About Bats” (for youngsters 4 to 8), including “Little Hatchlings” (12 to 23 months) and autism friendly offerings.  For the full schedule and tickets

Sunday, October 20th:  It’s My Park Day – Fall Edition

East River Esplanade and 96th Street, 10am-3pm

Looking forward to a beautiful spring:  Daffodil planting along the Esplanade wall…  Railing scraping and painting…  Bringing the planter back from near death with tulip, crocus and, of course, daffodil bulbs…  Be there!

Thursday, October 24th:   The Big Apple Crunch!

Brooklyn Borough Hall Greenmarket, 12pm

Join GrowNYC, Food Day, countless schools, businesses, nonprofits, Greenmarket shoppers and New Yorkers from every corner of our city as they and YOU break the world record for the number of apple bites!  No way this won’t be incredible fun.   For more and to sign up

Saturday, October 26th:  Shred-A-Thon – Ghost & Goblin/Halloween Edition

Curbside at the 82nd Street Greenmarket between First & York, 10am-2pm

What we’ll be shredding:

Paper of any and every kind!  Bring it on!!

But, please, NO cardboard or handled shopping bags.

Please do remove paper clips and spiral bindings. 

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

Hardcovers are welcome at Goodwill.

Monday, November 11th & Wednesday, November 20th:  Artisinal Baking Workshop

Horticultural Society of New York,  148 West 37th Street, 13th Floor, 6:30-8:30pm

A two-part workshop concentrating on the miraculous sourdough… From creating  and sustaining your own sourdough starter..  To preparing the best of sourdough breads.  Instructor:   Sarah Owens, master baker and owner of BK17 Bakery.  Members:  $60.  Non-members:  $75.  For more

Time for some miscellaneous mini-calling-to-accounts:

Let’s hope there won’t be any oil spills, fracking misadventures or nuclear plant venting during the latest government shutdown…  Not with 94% of the EPA on furlough.

Very happy for the folks down in Murray Hill who’ll be getting a lovely, storm-resistant park at 36th and First, constructed by real estate developer JDS in exchange for being allowed to build 2 new towers taller… 

Of course, we got plenty of similar spaces (known as POPS or privately-owned public  spaces) throughout the UES…  More than 70 at last count…  Most of them unidentified and with few if any amenities.

You may recall our noting that our Community Board did a study of these spaces last year.

They’re making noises about developers including POPS in projects yet to be built, but we’re still waiting to see what action they’ll be taking on those that have existed for decades.

This while Memorial Sloan Kettering and CUNY’re being allowed to build big and high on 74th Street in exchange for unspecified improvements to passive park space a mile away from the affected residential community.

Humm.

And then: 

Likely you noticed the new green and terracotta-colored lanes north of 72nd Street.  Here’s hoping it isn’t the off-the-shelf paint (DOT’s admitted it) used in the blocks below that looked so beat up and dirty you’d think it’d been applied eons ago rather than a few days earlier…  And in the case of the bus lane, immediately began to wear away.  

Moving to the middle ground:

Bicycle advocates Transportation Alternatives have just released a survey that indicates more than 60% of New Yorkers favor better pedestrian and bike infrastructure

This past Monday and at long, long last, the EPA finalized the $506 million cleanup plan for the Gowanus Canal Superfund site.  Unfortunately, as per Regional Administer Judith A. Enck, while the cleanup will make the canal safe for boating, it will end up neither fishable or swimmable. 

On to the fully upbeat:

Like The New York Restoration Project concurrently unveiling the new Gowanus Garden!   Designed to “address the immediate hydrological needs” of the Gowanus neighborhood, the garden includes a rain garden, bioswale, flood tolerant plants and is expected to manage 150,000 gallons of stormwater each year. 

Or the fantastically successful summer that just ended out on Governor’s Island…  With more to come in 2014!

Or that fellow Manhattanites of Hell’s Kitchen finally secured major improvements to one heck of dangerous intersection!  (We’re inspired!)

Gentlemen, take note!  A new British survey reveals that women are more attracted to men driving green – and we’re not talking color – cars!

NYC was a pioneer on the “parklet” score and no reason we shouldn’t be fashioning more, especially now that other cities are so creatively following our lead!

IKEA’s about to launch sales of solar panels at its U.K. stores!  (Gotta be coming here soon!) 

Witness to what one individual can achieve:  The East Village’s Creative Little Gardena quiet, contemplative space and National Wildlife Federation Habitat created by the late Françoise Cachelin,  community activist and WWII French resistance member.

Now that it’s gone green, the Empire State Building has not one…  not two…  but THREE greenroofs!

We’re pretty meh about the other 9 examples but love Green Man, one amazing botanical sculpture!

As promised, OpenHouse’s just  released its offerings – and great they are – for OHNY Weekend 2013

Yes, there’re animals:

Wow!  There’re hero songbirds out there helping scientists study the presence of mercury in the environment and air pollution!  

The Staten Island Zoo’s just launched a $20,000 online fundraiser that’ll enable them to acquire a pair of moody but beautiful cassowaries, the world’s second largest bird!  (Ostriches are bigger.)   If you’d like to lend a hand

Meanwhile, the grandson of Jacques Cousteau and team will soon be residing in an 81-ton habitat 63 feet underwater.  Reality TV, of course, complete with live feeds on Facebook, Twitter and Skype.  Fingers crossed given serious sponsors –  there’ll be a bit of science, too!  Young Cousteau promises we’ll be seeing a lot of fish action… 

Looking forward to new doc “Running Wild” on the life and work of  conservationist Dayton Hyde and, in particular, the Black Hills Wild Horse Sanctuary he founded.   (Playing this week at the Village East Cinema.

Wishing you serene greenness,

UGS

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