Happy Hamburger Week, UESiders!

It’s Sustainable Seafood Week, too! 

Better still, it’s also a week during which, in the year 1744, NYC passed its first sanitation code, the central feature of which was to forbid skinners, tanners and starch makers from pouring waste from their business activities onto city streets!

Even better, it’s a reasonably warm first week of May:

Saturday, May 3rd:  82nd Street Greenmarket

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

Compost & Clothes Collection – 9am – 1pm 

At their tables will be American Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard Honey, Samascott, Gajeski, Rising Sun Beef, Rabbits’ Run Farms and Garden of Spices Farms!

This Saturday at 10am, there’ll be a special treat for the young ones among us… Storytime with Natalie Cronin – area resident and founder of Tinker Tree Play/Care  –  plus an introduction to Natalie’s friendly and industrious composting worms! 

Last week’s recycling totals:  62 lbs batteries;  24 lbs filters, cords, CDs/DVDs, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 8 pair of eye glasses; 10 bins of compost; 42 bags of clothes.

One more time!  A record 10 compost bins and 42 bags of clothes!!

Holy crow!!

Saturday, May 3rd: The 19th Annual Big Swim

Asphalt Green Aqua Center, 1750 York Avenue at 91st Street, 10:45am

And we quote, “A swimsational day of free fun swim races for children ages 6-12 that also raises funds for AG’s Fit Kids Fit City Campaign!”  Olympic and other elite swimmers will also be on hand!  (Pledge2Protect will be there and active, too!)  For events, schedules, registration and more… 

Saturday, May 3rd & Sunday, May 4th: Jane’s Walk NYC and Birthday Party

All Around Town

Choose one of the 100-plus, unique, free guided tours, avail yourself of new, interesting perspectives on our city and its challenges, then wrap up the day at a birthday party…   All in honor of great urbanist Jane Jacobs.  For tour info and to RSVP for the party

Monday, May 5th:  Precinct 19 Shredding Event

19th Precinct Station House, 153 East 67th Street, 4-7pm

Of course, the NYPD’s concerned about identity theft and fantastic that our 19th Precinct is adding to the UES’s shredding opportunities!  Free.   (And consider attending the Precinct’s always interesting monthly meeting in the station house at 70m!)  

Tuesday, May 6th:  Why The World Needs An Urban Sustainable Development Goal Webinar

On Your Computer, 12-1pm

And don’t we all want and need a more livable and storm-resilient city! Organized by the Municipal Art Society Global and featuring a quartet of distinguished experts/speakers. Free. For more on the subject and to register

Tuesday, May 6th:  East River Esplanade Improvement Meeting

Regis High School, 60 East 85th Street, 6:30pm

Ideas needed…  And if you spent a minute on the delapidation which is our Esplanade recently, we’ll bet you’ve got plenty of them!  So come, share and let your imagination run free and green! 

Saturday, May 9th:  Butterfly Project NYC – Native Plant Share

East 153rd Street and Grand Concourse, The Bronx, 11am-1pm

Of course, we want to know more about native plants – especially milkweed – pretty to look at and a magnet for hungry butterflies.   This 2-hour session provides the basics and free plants – for use in public spaces like bike island gardens – as long as supplies last. Free like the plants.  To RSVP

Friday, May 9th: Impacts of Radon from Natural Gas on Indoor Air Quality Public Hearing

250 Broadway, 19th Floor, 10am

Among its many un-virtues gas from shale contains substantially more radon – the #2 cause of lung cancer – than conventionally- produced natural gas…  A risk that various NYS Assembly committees are now investigating.  For a full description of the hearing and its intent, including rules governing testimony… 

Saturday, May 17th – Sunday, September 7th: Groundbreakers – Great American Gardens and the Extraordinary Women Who Designed Them

The New York Botanical Garden, 2900 Southern Boulevard, The Bronx

Some of the names are familiar, others are not, but to-a-one they moved the landscaping art forward, often redefining what made for a beautiful garden. Adults, $20.  Children under 12, $10.  For details, hours and more…  


Sunday, May 11th:  NYC SAFE Disposal Event

Union Square, North Plaza (south side of 17th Street between Broadway and Park Avenue), 10am-4pm

The Sanitation Department’s (usually) once-a-year, free event that gives us all a chance to clear our homes of potentially dangerous household items…  Think nail polish…  Anti-freeze… Moth balls…  Old paint…  Pesticides… Stuff that no way should be flushed or poured down a kitchen sink or street drain or just tossed. Electronics, too!  For the complete list and more…  

Saturday, May 17th – Sunday, September 28th: Free Kayaking!

Pier 96 at West 55th Street & the West 72nd Street Dock

The all-volunteer Manhattan Community Boathouse will be offering free weekday and weekend kayaking on the Hudson to all comers.  Can’t be anything but great!  For the group’s calendar and more

Coming soon:

Sunday, May 18th:  It’s My Park Day – Part II 

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

Roses…  Russian sage…  Milkweed to lure Monarch butterflies… And who knows what else our landscape maestro Banford Weissman will have us planting!  Yes, of course, we’l be scraping and painting more railings, too!   Be there! 

Some of the IMPD-Part I Gang

Some of the IMPD-Part I Gang

As for miscellany this time out:

And why are we so fixated on milkweek these days?  Because it’s so directly tied to the drastic fall in monarch butterfly numbers.  And the link between the two is

What’s next in the skeevy goings-on around GMO labeling? Smucker’s trying to discourage the legislation, that’s what!  If you think the company – as Kraft, Dole and others have done – should cease and desist...

And if you believe that the EPA shouldn’t approve the use of a variant of Agent Orange on genetically engineered crops

How crazy is LG’s inclination to ruin the lovely, unspoiled, panoramic Palisades view with a mega-building that’d be way visible above the tree line?!  (If you think the company should reformulate their architectural plan…) 

And now for a bit of news that poses the question…  If you were a major corporation and your prospective interior contractor (new term to us, too) already had one big, fat felony conviction, why would you and a whole lot of other major corporations hire that firm? 

FYI, this past Wednesday was the 11th rainiest day ever recorded in NYC.

In ye olde grey area:

Interesting to see how it plays out…  “It” being the City Council’s new approach to discretionary spending… 

Same for the City’s just announced initiative to convert payphone kiosks into a citywide wifi network.  (Presumably all 3 grotty kiosks on our block won’t be required to accomplish the task!)

Yeah, the Landmarks Preservation Commission landmarked Park Avenue…  Mostly…  And with one significant qualification.

Getting on our genuinely smiley face: 

Happiness is the Supreme Court upholding EPA standards that’ll compel coal-fired power plants in 28 states to deal with emissions responsible for 34,000 deaths a year,  add some $280 billion to America’s medical bill and drift over the borders of neighboring states, wrecking their air as well.

More joy in news that Community Board 5’s focused on the shading of Central Park by existing and proposed super-skyscrapers (and they’d appreciate your help)!

Okay, so its population is only 10,000…  Still, herewith, the world’s first island powered entirely by renewable energy!

Here in the energy-profligate First World, nice that Boeing and Kaiser Aluminum are now partners in turning millions of tons of aluminum scrap into new airplanes!

Then there’s the soon-to-be tallest structure in the U.S…  A solar wind tower!! (Thanks to reader Kathleen Treat for the tip!)

Attention anglers:  The NYS Department of Environmental Conservation has expanded your opportunities to fish for summer flounder/fluke… 

Considering a camping trip somewhere in NYState?  Now you can comparison-shop potential campgrounds via the Department of Recreation and Historic Preservation’s new online virtual tours

For those unfamiliar with the Hell’s Kitchen Farm Project…  Get familiar!  It’s one of the most unique and lovely community endeavors in a city teaming with good works! 

Always a thrill when items of NYC’s distant past are unearthed… This time out, 150-year old beer bottles!

This while – on a grander scale – The Museum of Natural History’s just put online some 7,000 photographs from the 1897-1902 Jesup Expedition which sought to prove that the Americas’ first people migrated over a frozen Bering Strait!

And now for something completely different:

Since all we New Yorkers are experts on matters of design, here’s a test:  “Do You Know The 10  Most Famous Classic American Designers?”

 Bring on those animals:

One small but good thing you can do for the 96 elephants killed by poachers each day:  Encourage PBS’s “Antiques Roadshow” to no longer appraise items made of ivory… 

Bears live in the desert?!  Yes, indeed, and in the form of the Gobi bear!

It’s baaaacckkk…  Osprey Cam ( beautiful Mother Osprey keeps soon-to-hatch eggs warm in a Maine nest)!  (Watch her sleep at night!)

The critter hasn’t been around of a few hundred thousand years, but we say young Olivia McConnell is right…  The Colombian Mammoth should be South Carolina’s official state fossil!  (Think we need a fossil of our own, NYStaters!)

In case you missed the latest viral sensation (involving a squirrel)

Yours in perpetual greenness,



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