Monthly Archives: August 2018

Happy Farmers Market Weekend, UESiders!!

The final two days of Farmers Market Week 2018…

And the plan was to celebrate with Council Member Ben Kallos and his UES classic, Cooking with Kallos at 82nd Street…

Then came Saturday’s pelting rain forecast!!

Thus, look for NYC’s most culinary Council Member to be in apron/wielding spatula mode next Saturday, August 18th! 

Be there, folks, for eats by and chat with CM, 10am-12pm!!

As for the week ahead:

Friday, August 10th:  Summer Afternoon Music at Ruppert Park

Ruppert Park, 1741 Second Avenue at 92nd Street, 4-6pm

Join NYC Parks and the Muslim Volunteers for New York in a lovely late afternoon of music by The Blue Dahlia with their jazz/French chanson sound!!  Come ready to have a great time!!   Free.  (Yes, Ruppert Park’s coming alive!!)  

Friday, August 10th:  “Peter Rabbit” at 24 Sycamores Park

24 Sycamores Park, York Avenue at 60th Street, 8pm

Beatrix Potter’s classic tale of one naughty rabbit and his adventures!!   Animated film fun for the whole family!!   Limited chair seating, but blanket-lounging welcome.  Only plastic-bottled drinks.  Made possible by  NYC Parks and the  Mayor’s Office of Media and Entertainment.  Free!  For more

Saturdays, August 11th, 18th & 25th:  Summer Streets!

Park Avenue, 72nd to Chambers Streets

Get out and walk…  Bike…  Zipline…  Picnic…  Stroll…  Indulge in extreme sports…  Park Avenue is all our park!!   Rain or shine!!  For more

Saturday, August 11th:  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 Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey,  Sikking Flowers, Samascott,  Old Mother Hubbert,  Gajeski,  Ale Wife, Hawthorne, Walnut Hill Farm and Cherry Lane Farms!!

And, yes, as promised by Mega Market Manager Margaret, Sun Fed/Maple Avenue Farm with their amazing beef, pork and lamb will be joining our merry 82nd Street band this Saturday!! 

Margaret further enlightens us with:  “Sun Fed’s beef is from cattle raised 2 ways.  Half of the herd is purely grass fed and the other half is grass fed and grain finished, giving that meat a slightly higher fat content, making it more tender and easier to cook using traditional techniques.”

Good thing – given all the beef/pork/lamb we’ll be slicing –  that the Master Knife Sharpener will be on hand to get our cutlery in shape!! 

Meanwhile, there’ll be a new face tending to our compost/clothing/recyclables collection…  Genny Rodriguez’ll be stepping in to fill Moises Enriquez’s very green shoes!! 

Recycling totals 7/28:  59 lbs batteries;  24 lbs cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges;  1 pair of eyeglasses;  11 compost bins; 37 bags of clothes      8/4:  76 lbs batteries;  14 lbs cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges;  11 compost bins; 41 bags of clothes.

Bring on those makeup wands, ladies!!

Saturday, August 11th: 7th Annual Great Hudson River Estuary Fish Count

Randall’s Island Park, 1-4pm (and 18 other River locations)

Think waders, seine nets, minnow traps, rods and reels, 200 fish species, learning and a lot of fun…  All under the guidance of actual naturalists!!  And as NYS DEC Chief Basil Segos says, “Citizen science efforts like the Great Hudson River Estuary Fish Count provide our fishery managers with invaluable data and give people the opportunity to help DEC monitor New York’s natural resources!”  For complete details

Saturday, August 11th:  “In the Name of the Earth” Choral Event

Harlem Meer, Central Park at 110th Street, 3-5pm

Four choirs  – 800 professional and amateur singers – led by the great Simon Halsey –  transform the names of North American rivers, lakes, mountains, and deserts into a musical meditation on the Earth, the Water, and the Holy Wind.  Composed by Pulitzer Prize winner, John Luther Adams.   Free!  For more

Sunday, August 12th:  The 92nd Street Greenmarket

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

Compost Collection, 9 am-1pm

With us will be the fabulous American Pride Seafood,  Back to the Future Farm/Ole Mother Hubbert Milk, Central Bakery, Sikking Flowers, Consider Bardwell, Meredith’s Bakery, Norwich Meadows, Halal Pastures, Phillips, Sun Fed Beef/Maple Avenue Farms  and NS Wager’s Cider Mill!!

Happy to say the Master Knife Sharpener will be back and honing for yet another week, too!!

Ultima Manager Margaret reminds:  “Get that Frequent Shopper Card punched and win one of several great prizes!!   And then observes:  “Amazing how we can now get everything on our weekly grocery lists at the Greenmarket!”

Recycling totals  7/29:  21 lbs batteries;  17 lbs cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges;  4 1/4 compost bins      8/5:   16 lbs batteries; 8 lbs cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 4 1/2 compost bins

Closing in on 5 bins!!

Wednesday, August 15th:  NY Ferry 90th Street Stop Debut

East River Esplanade at 90th Street

And its 90th Street schedule is…   (There’re an amazing number of stops both north and south!!)  With a ticket just $2.75!!

Thursdays, August 16th, 23rd & 30th:  Rooftop Czech Center Cine-Concert Series

Czech Center NY, 321 East 73rd Street, 7pm

So fun…  Taking in a brilliant, classic silent film…  Accompanied by great, live Czech musicians…  High above the Upper East Side…  Icy cocktail in hand!!  $12.  For films, tickets and more

And then:

Friday, August 17th:  2018 National Thrift Store Day Crawl – Grammercy

Thrift Store Row, 157 EAST 23rd Street, 5-8pm

And in celebration of the day, Housing Works, the Salvation Army, Goodwill and Vintage Thrift  are partnering to benefit donateNYC!!  Add in refreshments, bargains galore and prizes!!  For the rundown

Saturday, August 25th:  13th Annual Jamaica Bay Shorebird Festival

Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge, 7:30am- 4:30pm

A propitious time as over the past 40 years, over 40 species of shorebirds (including rare and accidental vagrants) have been recorded at Jamaica Bay Wildlife Refuge’s East and West Ponds from mid-July through October, with the greatest diversity and abundance usually occurring in August!!  Activities include guided shorebird walks, family programming and talks by experts on shorebird conservation and identification and Jamaica Bay.   Free but a $20 donations is suggested!!  Free bus transportation from Manhattan for NYC Audubon members!!  (Call NYC Audubon at 212-691-7483 to reserve a seat.)  For more information, contact American Littoral Society at 718-474-0896 or Don Riepe at

And then:

Saturday, August 25th:  Pet Adoption at Biscuits & Bath

1064 First Avenue, 11am-3pm

Always a good time to give an adorable furry canine critter a forever home!! 

Looming on the horizon: 

Saturday & Sunday, September 8th & 9th:  The Carl Schurz Park Conservancy Gracie Square Art Show

East End Avenue from 84th to 88th Streets, 10am-5pm (rain or shine)

Marvelous art of every discipline and style…  Engaging art activities for the younger set…  Delicious edibles from Yura’s on East End…  An annual UES classic that  not only sustains the Park but enables the evolution of its beauty!!  

Tuesday, September 11th:  New York Cares 9/11 Day of Service

Manhattan Location, 5:30am-1pm

One of the many fine ways to mark this most solemn day in our city’s history…  Lending a hand with one of many tasks in assembling meals for 750,000 of those in need!!  For complete details and to sign up…  

Saturday, September 22nd:  Jamaica Bay Sunset Ecology Cruise

Pier 9, Sheepshead Bay/Emmons Avenue, Booklyn, 3:30pm

Jamaica Bay in all its glory…  Its history…  Its ecology…  Its amazing feathered wildlife…  Its management issues…  All imparted by expert Don Riepe and Mickey Cohen!!  Then there’s the complimentary wine, cheese, fruit and drinks!!  Adults, $55.  Under 16, $25.   Sponsored by  Gateway National Recreation Area, NYC Audubon and the American Littoral Society.   For full into and tickets

Sunday, September 23rd:  Marble Hill Walking Tour

Broadway & 225th Street, The Bronx, 12-2pm

Bryan Diffley, Project Manager of the High Bridge restoration, describes why and how the Harlem  River was re-engineered, bridged over and – along with Manhattan Island – changed forever!!  $30.  For tickets and more (including more great NYC H2O events)

Monday, September 24th:  Variety (as in fruits and vegs) Showcase New York

GrowNYC’s Project Farmhouse,  76 East 13th Street, Daytime Session – 12-3pm, Evening Session – 5-8pm

Think – and we quote – “…an interactive mixer designed to build community between plant breeders, organic farmers and eaters where attendees have the unique experience to taste new and in-development vegetable, fruit & grain cultivars with the breeders that created them, share opinions, talk about needs & preferences and learn about the importance of organic plant breeding!”  Amazing, yes?  $100.  For more and tickets…   (There’ll also be interactive tables at a free, public outdoor space 2 blocks away at the Union Square Greenmarket from 11:00 am – 6:00 pm!!) 

Tuesday, October 2nd:  Solar One Oktoberfest Celebration/Benefit

Under the tent at Solar One,  East River Esplanade at 23rd Street

Oktoberfest beer…  Delicious Bavarian snacks…  Oompah music…  Yes, all the trimmings of a traditional Munich Oktoberfest and every penny benefitting the great, green work of Solar One!!   $85 and up.  For more and tickets

Doesn’t get more miscellaneous than this week’s collection… i.e.:

First and foremost, given the incredible recyclers that we are, pretty fascinating  just what’s in our waste citywide!!   (Totally worthwhile getting on GrowNYC’s newsletter mailing list!!)

The rest of the world may think we live in a concrete jungle, but UESider Susan Hewitt  and participant in the NY Botanical Garden’s Eco Flora Project is constantly coming across the surprising nature in our midst…  

Meanwhile, no matter how modern we think we are in 2018, NYState’s offering a hunting and trapping course!!

Going more serious:

In the On-What-Planet-Do-They-Plan-On-Living Category, there’s the Interior Department’s move to allow pesticide use and GMO farming in wildlife areas… 

Still more UES construction afoot

And more still

Thank goodness this UWS structure will be saved!!

Into our activist mode:

Should you think asbestos regulations should not be relaxed

Give NoSpray’s brief summary of NYC insecticide spraying a look and you might want to contact the mayor to say, “The City lost the court cas in 2006… So stop spraying our city with insecticides.” 

(They’re using the stuff in our Manhattan parks, too!!)

Going brighter:

How about a Manhattan beach…?! !

UES recycling maven and poet laureate of reuse  Jacquelyn Ottman has a new book out…  A compilation of her reflections on waste!!

It’s summer, we’re out in nature and keeping NYS Forest Rangers busy

Same for our Environmental Conservation Officers

Among the world’s most amazing waterfalls are

No limit to human ingenuity, even the material’s plastic bottles…  (Why aren’t we building roads with the darned things?)

Elsewhere, here’s what folks are doing with a mixed plastic-melt cocktail…  (Thanks to reader Tori Gilbert for the tip!!)

In the animal world:

A construction worker repairing a piling below Pier 40 in New York Harbor discovered a ‘giant’ oyster and brought it to researchers at the nearby The River Project, a marine science field station in Hudson River Park. Workers weighed it there, and it clocked in at more than 610 grams (around 1.3 pounds) and measured 8.5 inches long. The wild oyster is not edible. 

giant oyster

That Giant Oyster

(Oysters are filter feeders; they feed on algae in the river and can help improve the ecosystem of estuary waters. They also provide structure and habitat for hundreds of species, including crabs and fishes. With cleaner water in the harbor, oysters are returning and settling in small numbers.)  

(The River Project offers hands-on education programs, live exhibits, and research internships.)

Staying aquatic, we ask:

What loves figs and belly-rubs and is almost 90 years old?   Answer  Methuselah—an Australian lungfish residing at the California Academy of Science’s Steinhart Aquarium!!

Among the furry, scaled and finned:

Choose your animal cam...!!

Designer cat furniture

squirrel of many hats

And from the Hudson River Almanac:

7/29 – Manhattan: Anglers at Hudson River Park’s Pier 84 caught young-of-year bluefish (125 mm) as well as male blue crabs (100 mm) today. At Pier 63, a camper caught a summer flounder (125 mm), a rare catch for us. Finally, at Pier 25 in Tribeca, anglers caught more bluefish (150 mm) as well as our first ever horseshoe crab (Limulus polyphemus). – Olivia Radick

horseshoe crab

A Horseshoe Crab

(The bluefish were young-of-year, likely born in April in the Lower Bay of New York Harbor outside The Narrows. They come into the estuary in spring to seek sanctuary – small silvery fishes are like candy to larger fishes – and take advantage of the incredible amount of forage – other, smaller young-of-year fishes like herring. – Tom Lake]

8/3 – Manhattan, HRM 1: With thoughts of oyster toadfish, we checked our research gear in Hudson River Park at The River Project’s sampling station on the lighthouse tender Lilac at Pier 25. We were not disappointed, as we found ten young–of-year oyster toadfish (25-30 mm) and a blue crab (105 mm). –  Emma Palmer, Justin Chen


An Oyster Toadfish

And with that…

See you in September, friends,





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Happy Water Quality, Sandwich and Goat Cheese Month, UESiders!!

A total win-win-win in this neck of the woods seeing as NYC’s H2O is first class, our eateries abound in great sandwiches and Valley Shephard’s goat cheese is 100% unbeatable!! 

And then, today’s National Watermelon Day…  With Sunday (August 5th) National Oyster Day!!  (Eat out at one of these restaurants to support NYC reef restoration!!)

(It’s also Harlem Week all August!!)

But most of all, market shopping friends,  August 5th to 12th is National Farmers Market Week!!    And how can you celebrate?  By snapping a brilliant, high resolution photo of  your favorite Greenmarket and entering it in the Farmers Market Week Photo Contest1!!  Just send that great  pic to  by August 30th!!  

But let’s talk the next 7 days: 

Saturdays, August 4th, 11th, 18th & 25th:  Summer Streets!

Park Avenue, 72nd to Chambers Streets

Get out and walk…  Bike…  Zipline…  Picnic…  Stroll…  Indulge in extreme sports…  Park Avenue is all our park!!   Rain or shine!!  For more

Saturday, August 4th:  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,  Sikking Flowers, Samascott,  Old Mother Hubbert,  Gajeski,  Ale Wife, Hawthorne, Walnut Hill Farm and Cherry Lane Farms!!

So where’s Rising Sun Beef, you ask?

NEWS FLASH #1:    To which uber Market Manager Margaret replices:  “Very sorry to say that due to logistics, Rising Sun had to drop out of all markets, including 82nd. Not to worry though.  We’re replacing them with a GREAT new livestock farm- Sun Fed/Maple Avenue Farm,  familiar to you 92nd st shoppers!!  Sun Fed’ll  be bringing beef, pork & lamb and – fingers crossed –  will be ready to start next Saturday, August 11th!!”  

(No kidding, Sun Fed’s just fabulous!!)  


Our own Master Knife Sharpener will be back and ready to hone up a storm!! 


Next Saturday, August 11th, 10am-12pm, Council Member Ben Kallos returns with another installment of his classic “Cooking with Kallos”!!

Recycling totals 7/21:  77 lbs batteries;  28 lbs cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges;  11 pairs eyeglasses;  11 compost bins; 33 bags of clothes      7/28:  TBA 

July 21st cork collection was a record 21 lbs!!

Sunday, July  22nd:  The 92nd Street Greenmarket

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

Compost Collection, 9 am-1pm

At their tables will be American Pride Seafood,  Back to the Future Farm/Ole Mother Hubbert Milk, Central Bakery, Sikking Flowers, Consider Bardwell, Meredith’s Bakery, Norwich Meadows, Halal Pastures, Phillips, Sun Fed Beef/Maple Avenue Farms  and NS Wager’s Cider Mill!!

Alta Manager Margaret advises:  “The Market’s Frequent Shopper Promotion continues!  Get your card at the Info Tent, get it punched each week when you shop and win a prize on punch #5!!  And you won’t want to miss what Manager G will be  cooking up!


Look for the Master KNife Sharpener to be at ther table here, too!!

Phillips peaches are pretty darned divine!!

Recycling totals  7/22:  17 lbs batteries;  22 lbs cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges;  4 compost bins      7/29:  TBA 

Yet another 4 bin week!!

Tuesday, August 7th:  35th Annual NYPD 19th Precinct Night Out 

Schurz Park, 86th Street & East End Avenue, 5:30-8pm

Food, live music, games and – best of all – a great opportunity to get acquainted with the men and women in blue who keep the UES safe!!  Utterly free and family friendly!!  

Coming up fast:

Saturday, August 11th:  Ridgewood Resevoir Community Tour 

Ridgewood Resevoir, Vermont Place, Glendale,  10-11:30am  –  Meeting at the Vermont Place parking lot

Once an actual  NYC water source, decomissioned in the 1980’s and now reclaimed by Mother Nature, think – and we quote –  “a lush and dense forest has grown in its two outside basins while a freshwater pond with waterfowl”…  Another of  the great NYC H2O’s  explorations of our city’s natural landscapes.  Free.  For more, directions and to reserve a place…   ((And consider a Sunday return for a  10am-12:30 volunteer session removing invasive plants!!)

Wednesday, August 15th:  Opening of the NYC Ferry Stop at 90th Street

The East River Esplanade at 90th Street

Connecting us (and the Stuyvesant Cove, opening the same day) to points north and south.  Stay tuned for the schedule to be published:

Wednesday, August 22nd  Archipelago New York Evening Cruise

Pier 93, Hudson River at 43rd Street, 6:30pm

From 2012 to 2016, photographer and filmmaker Thomas Halaczinsky retraced the 1614 route of Adriaen Block, the first European to sail and map the archipelago of New York, exploring the magical and mysterious island world that stretches from the harbor to the eastern tip of Long Island.  Now, courtesy of Open House, we can tour a choice bit of Mr. Halaczinsky’s journey and with man himself!!  $30-75.  For more and tickets… 

The week in miscellany, commencing with a citizen science opportunity:

For those among you with outdoor pools – be they in NYC or at your NYS weekend places – the DEC’s initiated an August survey/census of the horribly invasive long-horned beetle (when the bad bug at its most active)!!

Should  you oppose the Bayer-Monsanto merger with its adverse effect on pollinators

Or supporting  the rights of Nature on our own Mother Earth

Refocusing local:

Stunning that NYC dirt – once one’s dug down – is incredibly fertile and being put to good use… 

And our preference(s) for women to be immortalized with NYC statuary are

Yet another unlikely NYC woodland plant…  The Indian pipe!! 

Yet another UES block likely coming down

Where the great Tallulah Bankhead once lived among us

As always, animals:

And the bird of the week is:


  The Gray Catbird

And the Mother Bird of the Century

Latest from the Hudson River Almanac:

7/22 – Queens, New York City: We went seining today at Fort Totten-Little Bay Park in northeast Queens. The morning tide was fully high. Our catch featured young-of-year fishes, including striped bass (some as small as 25 mm), bluefish, winter flounder, northern kingfish, and spot, a small saltwater drum. The most common fish in the net was Atlantic Silverside (Menidia menidia), far too many to count, ranging in size from young-of-year (20 mm) to adult (120 mm). The salty water was 27.0 ppt and the water temperature was 70 degrees F. – Peter Park, Andrew Wu

 A Bluefish

7/24 – Yonkers, HRM 18: Students from the Westhab Community Group program (ages 6-15) went seining this afternoon at the Sarah Lawrence College Center for the Urban River at Beczak. Despite the tide being low and the inshore shallows being muddy, we managed to haul our seine with spectacular results! The highlight, in addition to American eels, Atlantic silverside, hogchokers, mummichogs, large white perch, and 109 moon jellyfish, was a lion’s mane jellyfish. – Gabrielle Carmine, Shreeda Segan, Michael Treus, Vanessa Vazquez, Tiny Crenshaw

       A Lion’s Mane                Jellyfish

[The lion’s mane jellyfish (Cyanea capillata), the largest known species of jellyfish in the world, is quite uncommon in the estuary. They use their stinging tentacles to capture prey such as fish and smaller jellyfish. The tentacles of larger lion’s mane jellyfish can reach 100-feet in length and they can attain a bell diameter of over six-feet, although most are far smaller. Exactly ten years ago (July 2008) swarms of lion’s mane jellyfish were reported in the Hudson River off Manhattan’s west side. Tom Lake]

7/26 – Manhattan, HRM 1: We returned to our research sampling gear in Hudson River Park at The River Project’s sampling station on the lighthouse tender Lilacat Pier 25 to see what had collected overnight. This was baby oyster toadfish season – we’ve been getting dozens in the traps – so, we were not surprised to find three young-of-year, all about 20 mm in length.  Alyssa De Falco, Michelle Wu, Siddhartha Hayes

       That Baby  Oyster Toadfish    

Green in our briefness,





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