Monthly Archives: December 2017

Happy Dawn of Regenerative Agriculture, UESiders!!

That’s the new term for a possible agricultural revolution focused on restoration of soil health (without chemicals) and, as that renewed soil health is achieved,  increased productivity and carbon sequestration!!   

Pretty much under the radar, then BOOM!  Within a week, The Times covers it in the last Sunday’s Review and a new organization –  Re(Store) It – pops up!

Stay tuned in 2018!!

But first, the wonderful December ahead: 

Friday, December 8th:  Eric Sanderson New York Streams Lecture

Hunter College, 68th Street & Lexington, 7pm

What does the man who gave us the brilliant and fun  “Mannahatta” have to say about our city’s mostly buried and forgotten streams?  Organized by the all-things-water group, NYC H2O.  Free!!

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

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

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm

With us will be American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey, Consider Bardwell,  Samascott, Hudson Valley Duck, Rising Sun Beef, Old Mother Hubbert, Alewife, Gajeski and Hawthorne Farms!! 

So great that Nalesco Farms is back at 82nd, too!!

PLUS, our Master Knife Sharpener will be on hand and honing as well!!

Last week’s recycling totals:  76 lbs. batteries; 24 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 21 pairs of eye glasses; TBA compost bins; TBA bags of clothes; 10,300 lbs of paper!!

Ah…  Breaking records is so very sweet!!

Saturday, December 9th:  The First New York Cat Film Festival 

SVA Theater, 333 West 23rd Street, 3pm & 4:30pm

You read it right!  And have to say, the 2-part program each composed of several cat-themed films sounds really good!  $15 for each program.  For film programs/summaries and tickets

Sunday, December 10th:  Third New York Dog Film Festival

SVA Theater, 333 West 23rd Street, 2:45pm & 4:45pm

Yes, there’s a Dog Film Festival!!  And what better way to keep our animal film life in perfect balance!!  Same 2-part program.  $15 for each program.  For the films and tickets…   

Tuesday, December 12th: First Avenue Estates Oral Arguments

Appellate Division of the Supreme Court of the State of New York, 2pm

From what we understand, this is the infamous Stahl Corporation’s last stand…  After decades of crying poverty, neglect and desecration of the landmarked First Avenue Estates York Avenue buildings (they’d purchased with intent to demolish), they have this one final appeal remaining.   With kudos to the many organizations – especially Friends of the Upper East Side Historic Districts – we can’t wait to hear the pitiful pleadings of guys in thousand dollar suits!!  (For a history of these sad goings-on…)

Tuesday, December 12th:  Historic Cooking Workshop – Sugar Plums and Wassail

Mount Vernon Hotel Museum, 421 East  61st Street, 6:30pm

Guess what?  There’re no plums in sugar plums!!  And there’re plenty more 19th Century holiday treat-making twists and turns to explore!!  Members and students, $20.  Non-members, $25.   For reservations (required) or 212-838-6878!

Wednesday, December 13th:  NYC Wastewater Hearing

Council Chambers, City Hall, 10am

So, guess what?  Our city has the highest level of sewage polllution in all the U.S.A.  What’s more, 7 of the 11 long-range plans/solutions required by the Clean Water Act – many involving untested metholdology and chemical cocktails – have been approved without one bit of public input.   Time for sunshine!!  Time for spending city bucks bringing our waste water system out of the Dark Ages (as opposed to building garbage transfer stations).  Time for swimable/fishable NYC water!!   For more

Wednesday, December 13th:  Plastics – Killing Oceans, Killing Us

Seafarers & International House, 123 East 15th Street, 6:30pm

Plastic Free Water Partnership members Dr. JudyWeis and Sarah Edward-Eunomia spell out the more than looming threat and how its challenges could be met.   Fourth in the Sierra Club New York City’s 2017-2018 Sustainability Series.  Free.

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

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

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm

At their holiday tables will be American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey, Consider Bardwell,  Samascott, Hudson Valley Duck, Rising Sun Beef, Old Mother Hubbert, Alewife, Gajeski, Hawthorne and NalescoFarms!! 

Adding to the market’s holiday spirit will be visits by the amazing Breuckelen Distilling and GrowNYC’s fabulous Regional Grains Project!!)  

Suddenly, it’s 2018:

Saturday, January 6th & Sunday, January 7th:  MULCHFEST!!

Carl Schurz Park, 86th Street & East End Avenue, 10am-2pm

Join the NYC Parks, the New York Department of Sanitation and GreeNYC and turn that once gorgeous Christmas tree into wood chips/mulch that’ll be nourishing our wonderful street trees throughout 2018!!  You’ll even be given a bag to take home!!  And keep this in mind:   More than 26,000 trees were recycled in 2017!!  We totally want to leave that number in the dust!!

Wednesday, January 10th:  Issues From Transportation Hell

Seafarers & International House, 123 East 15th Stret, 6:30pm

Willliam Henderson (Executive Director of the Riders Council to MTA), Nick Sifuentes (Executive Director of the Tri-State Transportation Campaign) and NYC Public Advocate Letitia James fill us on steps underway and envisioned to arrest NYC’s great subway meltdown.  Free.

Just a couple of activist items in our December miscellany file:

If you think our  designated National Monuments should remain intact…   (Then scroll down and check out the many fabulous tbirds, insects (and plants) near at hand on Long Island 

Should you believe The Clean Power Plan should stay in place

That net neutrality should be retained

And wolves continue to be protected

Casting a wider net:

For those who treated themselves to the moving segment on the subject of peaceful intra-family political disagreement, StoryCorps new project builds on how others have found common ground and their stories…  Could be even yours!!  For details… 

Some really good tips on making our holidays considerably that much greener!!

Seems like pesticides are on minds all over NYState…  Witness this message from NYS DEC that includes  instructions of how we must identify, track and totally understand the proper usage of all pesticides in our homes…  Here in the NYC, that would include items like Raid. 

And winners of NYS Department of Environmental Conservation 2017 Awards are… 

Green Mountain Power – those folks urging us to shed Con Ed and go green at both markets was featured on  the PBS News Hours this past Wednesday night… 

Connecticut’s standardized its recycling regs statewide (great!)… Wherever recycling’s available (huh?!!)…

In the We Should Be So Organized category, tip of hat to publisher Veolia for its book detailing, in multiple languages European, recycled paper grades!

Meanwhile, Boston’s on the verge of banning single-use plastic bags, offering shoppers the choice of reusable bags, recyclable paper bags or compostable plastic bags for a charge of 5-cents instead!!  (A compostable bag option!!)

There’s a new master plan for the 42nd Street Library and we the public are invited to attend its (second) public presentation

All praise to glasses company Warby Parker which’s already provided eye exams/vision screenings and 20,000 pairs of free glasses for kids in 130 NYC schools and is now expanding that program to include all 227 community schools!!  They’ve even designed an array of stylish frames for those one in five kids (!) needing glasses to choose from!  Wow, yes!!

Wandering off the reservation:

If not the world’s most dangerous plant, it’s right up there…  The Giant Hogweed!!

Time for some critters:

Remember how New Yorkers should care for baby birds fallen from nests?  Here’s more about  the great place the little ones should taken (if they can’t be returned to nest):  The Wild Bird Fund on Columbus and 87th!! 

Dogs opening Christmas presents…  Or not!

Best squirrel and chipmunk videos

Why cats are afraid of cucumbers

Wishing you the most wonderful holiday season,

UGS

 

 

 

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Happy Mason Jar Day, UESiders!!

Also National Fritter and Bartender Appreciation Day!!

No reason why we can’t choose to designate a Happiness Is Being Upper East Sider Day, right?

Let’s get on it in 2018, people!!

But, first things first…  i.e. The active week ahead:  

Friday, December 1st:  NYSkies Astronomy Seminar

McBurney House, 125 West 14th Street between Sixth & Seventh, 6:30-9:30pm 

Star master John Pasmino’s subject this Friday:  Preparing to view Northern Lights!!  Yes, we have to get lucky, but it’s possible even given NYC’s own bright lights!!    As ever, free and amazing!

Friday & Saturday,  December 1st & Second:  Holiday Candlelight Tours of the Mount Vernon Hotel Museum

421 East 61st Street, 6:15pm & 7:30pm

You’re right…  A ton going on at the MV Museum and no more charming way to commence the holiday season than a visit and step back into pre-Christmas 1830…  Complete with traditional confections and live period music!!  Couldn’t be more family friendly.  Members, $10.  Non-members, $20.  Children, $5.  Reservations required or 212-838-6878!  

Saturday, December 2nd:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

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

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm

Some of the gang vacayed last week, but the full winter crew’s back this Saturday!!  Yup, American Pride Seafood (of course!), Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey, Consider Bardwell,  Samascott, Hudson Valley Duck, Rising Sun Beef, Old Mother Hubbert, Alewife, Gajeski and Hawthorne Farms!!

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

Last week’s recycling totals:  81 lbs. batteries; 22 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 12 1/4 compost bins; 35 bags of clothes.

Yes, now that the seasonal 57th Street Market is closed, DSNY is finally able to give 82nd Street its rightful increase in bins…  Well, they gave us 12, so make that “rightful increase in bin”…  And we filled it and then some!!

Saturday, December 2nd:  Shred-A-Thon – Pre-Santa Edition 

82nd Street/St. Stephen Greenmarket, 82nd Street between First & York, 10am-2pm

Last of the year, people!!

Just keep in mind…

NO cardboard or plastic-handled shopping bags.

REMOVE paper clips and spiral bindings. 

NO HARDCOVER BOOKS.   (But paperbacks are fine.)

(Take your hardcovers to Goodwill or Housing Works.)

Thanks to Council Members Kallos and Garodnick and Assembly Member Seawright for their so generous shredding grants!!

Sunday, December 3rd:  Carl Schurz Park Tree Lighting

86th Street and East End Avenue, 5pm

Can’t say it better than this, “Gather ’round the tree at 86th Street for caroling, hot chocolate, candy canes, and Insomnia cookies (while supplies last)!”   What’s more, your voices’ll be joining those of the the great choral group Cantori New York and accompanied by Orbital Brass!!

Tuesday, December 5th:  Meet the Author – “The Living Forest”

TreesNY, 100 Gold Street, 3rd Floor, 6-8pm

And we quote, “From the leaves and branches of the canopy to the roots and soil of the understory, the forest is a complex, interconnected ecosystem filled with plants, birds, mannals, insects and fungi.  Some of it is easily discovered, but many parts remain difficult or impossible for the human eye to see.  Until now…”    Secret beauty now made visible by the writer/photographer team of Joan Maloof and Robert Llewellyn.   Organized by the fabulous people of TreesNY.  Free.  For more and to RSVP 

Tuesday, December 5th:  Greening the Grid – New York’s Energy Future Forum

Museum of the City of New York, 1220 Fifth Avenue, 6:30pm

Leading  thinkers (check ’em out) propose ways New York can adopt and even thrive as a coastal city in an age of rising waters!  Members, $15.  Non-members, $25.  Seniors, students and educators, $20.  For more and tickets…  

Then:

Monday, December 11th, Friday, December 15th & Friday, December 29th:  Kids Holiday Workshop at the Swedish Marionette Theater

Swedish Marionette Theater, Central Park, West 79th Street & West Drive  

After they take in the Theater’s great “Three Bears Holiday Bash” show, young ones’ll have the additional treat of decorating a dreidel (12/11), making an elf stick puppet (12/15) or a Kwanzaa stick puppet (12/29)!!   Kids, $8.  Adults, $12.   For more and tickets

Tuesday, December 12th:  Historic Cooking Workshop – Sugar Plums and Wassail

Mount Vernon Hotel Museum, 421 East  61st Street, 6:30pm

Guess what?  There’re no plums in sugar plums!!  And there’re plenty more 19th Century holiday treat-making twists and turns to explore!!  Members and students, $20.  Non-members, $25.   For reservations (required) or 212-838-6878!

Suddenly, it’s 2018:

Saturday, January 6th & Sunday, January 7th:  MULCHFEST!!

Carl Schurz Park, 86th Street & East End Avenue, 10am-2pm

Join the NYC Parks, the New York Department of Sanitation and GreeNYC and turn that once gorgeous Christmas tree into nourishing wood chips/mulch that’ll be nourishing our wonderful street trees throughout 2018!!  You’ll even be given a bag to take home!!  And keep this in mind:   More than 26,000 trees were recycled in 2017!!  We totally want to leave that number in the dust!!

Miscellany, commencing with the usual activist items:

If you think harmful chemicals should be removed from our household goods

And/or you believe that NYS needs an infinitely greener single-use plastic bag policy… 

If you believe the Clean Air Act should remain in place

In the general mode:

Winter storm safety tips

Further on the safety subject:  Four vaccines that are – depending on age – pretty much a must

Moving onto items NYC:

Going to take outrageously inspired/innovative solutions to master our housing crisis and here’s one

As our weird fall weather continues, still time to get in final touches to that garden of yours!

Truly NYC has almost every landscape, even the exurban.  Case and point, the wilds of Staten Islands and two derelict building complexes (happily, soon to be rehabbed!)…

We’ve got important Revolutionary War sites, too!!

Plus we have wild black walnuts!!

And light shows – in Madison Park and the Seaport District – all over town!!

But, so far, no  wooden (semi) skyscrapers

From The Times travel section,:  36 Hours in Latino New York!

That and how to choose the best – if not perfect – Christmas tree!!

NYC’s pre-Thanksgiving Day parades

(And the real story of Plymouth Rock…)

Last but hardly least:

On the abiding problem of email inbox clutter, the Organzing Goddess has really solid advice

Animal time:

Okay…  Reintroducing beavers via parachute in the 1950’s??!!  (And how Idaho’s going about it today!)

The Ultimate Wild Turkey Guide

Here’re some of those turkeys – along with a whole lot of other critters – in New Jersey woodlands

fish that thrives at 26,000 feet under

Question answered:  Where’s that bird going with that seed/nut in its bill?

We say it’s the greenest time of the year,

UGS

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