Category Archives: Uncategorized

Happy Earth Hour, UESiders!!

Yes, it’s that day (Saturday, March 25th) and time (8:30-9:30PM) again when we Green People not only abstain from driving even electric or hybrid cars, but also switch off everything in our homes that’s powered by fossil fuels – thus contributing to global warming – for a mere but meaningful 60 minutes!!  

We can do it, people!!

(The weather’ll be cooperating, too!)

Just set the DVR to record whatever’ll be happening with March Madness…  Take yourself, friends and family to a nearby park or your building’s roof with binoculars and study stars you’d normally not be able to see so clearly or at all…   And savor the feeling of being the fabulous, earth-conscious person that you are!!

Ah!  This just in from reader Gary Thalheimer:  The duck couple’s returned to the pond between 72nd/73rd on York!!

What a way to launch into the week ahead:   

Saturday, March 25th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

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

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm

Great (fingers crossed and don’t we deserve it)  Saturday weather for the long-awaited treat:

GrowNYC’s Regional Grain Project’s visit to the 82nd Street Greenmarket!!

Amazing, all the great edibles now made with/from grains once again grown in New York State!!   Once again grown and available to us, thanks to GrowNYC’s efforts!!

Come!!  Learn!!  EAT!!

Then load yourself up with all the wonderful stuff grown/caught by our market’s fabulous farmers/fishermen/beekeepers: American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey, Hudson Valley Duck, Rising Sun Beef, Comfort Bardwell Cheese, Ole Mother Hubbert, Hawthorne Valley, Samascott and Gajeski Farms!!

Last week’s recycling totals:  48 lbs. batteries; 18 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 11 compost bins; 24 bags of clothes.

ANOTHER 11 BINS!!

Saturday, March 25th to Sunday, April 2nd:  Participatory Budgeting Vote

Up and Down the Upper East Side

And right at the 82nd Street/St. Stephen Greenmarket on Saturday, March 25th! So important for us all to choose the UES projects that deserve Council Member Kallos’ incredibly generous $1M the most!  For the full schedule/locations/hours

It’s an April of sprucing up and enjoying our UES and beyond:

Saturday, April 8th:  Randall’s Island Spring Waterway Cleanup

Meet at the South Entrance of Icahn Stadium, 10 Central Road, Randall’s Island, 10am-12pm

Sponsored by outdoor brands United by Blue and REI (responsible for 177 cleanups and 995,291 pounds of trash removed in 2016), we’re counting this as the season’s first UES volunteer opportunity!  Totally family friendly!! All cleanup supplies provided!  Participants automatically entered to win United By Blue prizes!!  For a look at last year’s event

On to Earth Day:

Saturday, April 22nd:  EARTH DAY First Avenue Street Tree Mulch-A-Rama

Meet on the SE corner of 60th and First Avenue, 9am-1pm

First came February’s great laying of mulch around First Avenue street trees, 72nd to 79th Streets by the fabulous Christine, Ralph and friends!  Now, the target’s First Ave 60th to 72nd!  Amazing what a little soil cultivation and mulch does for not just our trees but the whole look of an avenue/street!!  Tools, refreshments, good company and the great feeling you’ll have… The start of a perfect Earth Day!!

Then head directly north for some relaxation:

Saturday, April 22nd:  EARTH DAY with the Pier 90 Project!

Pier 90, East River Esplanade at 90th Street, 12pm

A particularly special place to celebrate Mother Earth…  Among fellow UESiders, on our own East River and enjoying the lovely pier that only months ago community will revived and reclaimed as public space!  Oh, yes, there’ll also be live music and ice cream!!  Then, long about 3pm, environmental educator/ecologist/urban naturalist Gabriel Willow arrives to lead a green riverside tour!  Doesn’t get any better folks!   Yes, and it’s free!!

Thereafter, proceed south:

Saturday, April 22nd:  EARTH DAY on Union Square

Union Square, 12-7pm 

Seventy-plus environmental non-profits and businesses with the latest and greenest…  A  myriad of kids’ eco activities…  Live performances…  Even more free pleasure, folks!  

Sleep soundly and then arise: 

Sunday, April 23rd:  It’s My Park Spring Cleaning Day

Stanley Isaacs Park, 96th Street and First Avenue, 11am-3pm

Last fall, Harlem teens and families from Shiray Tefila cultivated, raked and planted who knows how many daffodil, tulip and grape hyacinth bulbs.  Come late April, it’ll be time to plant and tidy for park goers’ summer enjoyment!  Tools, plants and excellent refreshments provided…  Even knee-pads for you volunteers to keep!! See you there!!

Decompress, then:

Saturday, April 29th: People’s Climate March

All Across the Nation and NYC

As has always been the case but all the more so in 2017, it’s we the people who’ll be defending Mother Earth! Many NYC plans afoot…  Stay tuned!

Ah, May:

Sunday, May 7th:  It’s My Park Day – Esplanade Edition

East River Esplanade at 96th Street, 11am-3pm

Year 3 of the Scrape/Paint Esplanade Railings Project.  Remember when every inch of classic railings north and south of 96th was peeling and/or rusting out?  No more and we’ll be spiffing up another block’s worth in ’17… Especially as we’ll now be equipped with revolutionary (at least to us!) new painting mitts (in lieu of brushes and fantastic for doing railings)!!  As always, best painting gear, refreshments and company is provided!

Sunday, May 21st:  Green Park GardenersNYC Volunteer Day

East River Esplanade at 62nd Street, Time TBA

A chance to wield your trowel (and learn plenty) from the UES’s pioneer native plant gardeners!  Details soon, but mark that calendar!!

Miscellany commencing with a trio of mini-rants:

Really, how can business – especially corner businesses –  look out their windows at snow-covered  sidewalks, small mountains of snow blocking street crossings, obstructing bike lanes and bicycle island crosswalks…  And not do something??  Like picking up a shovel and getting to work!!  (If you think NYC is long overdue for a comprehensive and enforced snow clearing plan…) 

More change coming to 86th Street… 

See any resemblance between this proposed Brooklyn library and Second Avenue Subway ventilation towers? (Would city “designers/architects” be employable elsewhere?)

Feeling better:

Some lovely summer internship opportunities for high schoolers and those who’ve just graduated and they’re local:  i.e. The Mount Vernon Hotel Museum’s seeking teens with an interest in history, art, museums and/or a collaborative experience!!  For complete information and the application… 

And for the more mature…  GrowNYC’s  in search of seasonal Greenmarket managers!!  (Info sheet attached to this week’s email!)  

Looking briefly far afield:

Looks like archeologists have discovered the place where Pocahontas may or may not have saved John Smith’s life!

Back on NYC turf:

Of course, UESider/Greenmarket shopper/music historian Alan Light would be asked to share wisdom on the great Chuck Berry

And then:

NYS Department of Conservation-organized and guided fishing trip to Lake Ontario strictly for women… 

And why were UES Persian restaurants jam-packed last Monday, the first day of spring?

This ridiculous weather keeps up and deploying of Hungarian Scare Winter tactics may be necessary!

For those yearning to master waste water treatment

Whether we realize it or not, we’re all students of phenology!

The “I Voted” sticker design contest...

NYC’s own Fountain Pen Hospital!!

Why’s the Houston in Houston Street pronounced the way it is in NYC?

Thanks to Starman John Pazmino for how to see Venus twice in 24 hours, March 23rd-27th:

Yes, you can see Venus as BOTH evening and morning star in the next few days!  Step 1: Equip yourself with a pair of binoculars.  Step 2:  Locate a view open to the horizon at both sunrise and sunset. Step 3:  For evening sighting, wait till the sun sets, sinking just below the horizon.  Then scan the sky above 8 degrees to the right of above sunset point…  To Venus gentle twinkle!  Step 4:  For sunrise sighting, position yourself at least 10 minutes before rising time, then scan the sky above the horizon 8 degrees to the left of the sun’s first faintest rays. VOILA!  (And it wasn’t even on your bucket list!) 
Light on animals this time out, but they’re choice:
Happiness is greenness,
UGS

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Erin Go Bragh, UESiders!!

And thank you, gods ‘o weather for warming up just enough to not have ice cycles hanging from our shamrocks and shillelaghs! 

(They’re saving more frosty weather for our Saturday market…  Not that we care!!)

Oh!  It’s National Sleep Day, too!  (Good luck with that!)

As for the week (with more snow predicted) ahead:

All Spring & Summer:  Classes at the New York Botanical Garden

2900 Southern Boulevard, The Bronx, Midtown Education Center, 20 West 44th Street & Bard College

Landscape Design…  The Art & Science of Successful Native Planting…  Floral Design…  Study to become an Urban Naturalist (and steward)…  Botanical Drawing…  Mushroom Papermaking…  Horticultural Therapy… And scores more fascinating courses…  (We’re contemplating printing with plants!).  For the total rundown 

Friday, March 17th:  NYSkies Astronomy Seminar

McBurney House, 125 West 14th Street between Sixth & Seventh, 6:30-8:30pm 

Star master John Pasmino explores globular clusters!  And what is a globular cluster, you ask?  Recognized and named by astronomer Herschel in the 1780s and shaped like a ball, a single globular cluster can contain as many as several hundred thousand stars with some visible even with binoculars!!  Free and, as always, fascinating!

Saturday, March 18th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

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

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm

You scores who shrugged off sub-freezing weather and turned out for shopping and shredding will be viewing this Saturday’s weather prediction as small potatoes!

Same for our great farmers/fishermen – American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey, Hudson Valley Duck, Rising Sun Beef, Comfort Bardwell Cheese, Ole Mother Hubbert, Hawthorne Valley, Samascott and Gajeski Farms – who’ll all be at their tables!

ONE LAST REMINDER:  Next Saturday and our market will be hosting GrowNYC’s Regional Grain Project with an amazing array of edibles, all made with NYS’s home-grown grain!!  Be sure to stop by Market Manager G’s table for the info pamphlet!  As ever, thanks to the great GrowNYC and Manhattan Market Manager Margaret for broadening our eating world!

Last week’s recycling totals:  71 lbs. batteries; 16 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 7 pairs of glasses; 11 compost bins; 21 bags of clothes.

11 bins on a frigid Saturday!!  WOW!!

Saturday, March 25th to Sunday, April 2nd:  Participatory Budgeting Vote

Up and Down the Upper East Side

And right at the 82nd Street/St. Stephen Greenmarket on Saturday, March 25th!  So important for us all to choose the UES projects that deserve Council Member Kallos’ incredibly generous $1M the most!  For the full schedule/locations/hours

Saturday/Sunday, March 25th & 26th: 22nd Annual Maple Weekend

Around New York State

Twirl a brace drill!  Pound a spile!  Inspect sap flow in the sugarbush!  Savor the aroma of sap boiling down and take the maple taste test at one of 15 NYS syrup producers!  Eat a pancake and syrup breakfast!!  Couldn’t be more family friendly. Organized in cooperation with NYS Department of Agriculture.  Free.  To plan your weekend… 

Let the volunteer opportunities begin:

Saturday, April 8th:  Randall’s Island Spring Waterway Cleanup

10am-12pm

Sponsored by outdoor brands United by Blue and REI (their efforts resulted  in 177 cleanups and removal of 995,291 pounds of trash in 2016), here’s yet another brilliant volunteer opportunity as we prepare our UES for spring/summer enjoyment!!  All cleanup supplies provided!  Volunteers eligible to win United By Blue prizes! More details to follow…

Saturday, April 22nd:  EARTH DAY with the Pier 90 Project!

Pier 90, East River Esplanade at 90th Street, 12pm

A particularly special place to celebrate Mother Earth…  Among fellow UESiders, on our own East River and enjoying the lovely pier that only months ago community will revived and reclaimed as public space!  Oh, yes, there’ll also be live music and ice cream!!  Then, long about 3pm, environmental educator/ecologist/urban naturalist Gabriel Willow arrives to lead a green riverside tour!  Doesn’t get any better folks!   Yes, and it’s free!!

Thereafter, head south:

Saturday, April 22nd:  EARTH DAY on Union Square

Union Square, 12-7pm 

Seventy-plus environmental non-profits and businesses with the latest and greenest…  A  myriad of kids’ eco activities…  Live performances…  Even more free pleasure, folks!  

Sunday, April 23rd:  It’s My Park Spring Cleaning Day

Stanley Isaacs Park, 96th Street and First Avenue, 11am-3pm

Last fall, Harlem teens and families from Shiray Tefila cultivated, raked and planted who knows how many daffodil, tulip and grape hyacinth bulbs.  Come late April, it’ll be time to plant and tidy for park goers’ summer enjoyment!  Tools, plants and excellent refreshments provided…  Even knee-pads for you volunteers to keep!! See you there!!

Saturday, April 29th: People’s Climate March

All Across the Nation and NYC

As has always been the case but even more so in 2017, it falls to us plain old Americans to stand tall for the integrity of our land, air, water and the people living on this Earth.  Stay tuned…

Time out for some fun that doesn’t involve a trowel: 

Friday, Saturday & Sunday, May 5th, 6th & 7th:  Jane’s Walks 2017

In 200-Plus American Cities and All Over NYC

Celebrating the life and work of the great Jane Jacobs, it’s a weekend of free walking tours led by fellow/sister New Yorkers who know and love their neighborhoods.  You could even conceive and lead a tour yourself! Hosted by the Municipal Art Society. For full details

Pick up that trowel again:

Sunday, May 7th:  It’s My Park Day – Esplanade Edition

East River Esplanade at 96th Street, 11am-3pm

Year 3 of the Scrape/Paint Esplanade Railings Project.  Remember when every inch of classic railings north and south of 96th was peeling and/or rusting out??  No more and we’ll be spiffing up another block’s worth in ’17… Especially as we’ll now be equipped with revolutionary (at least to us!) new painting mitts (in lieu of brushes and fantastic for doing railings)!!  As always, best painting gear, refreshments and company is provided!

Sunday, May 21st:  Green Park GardenersNYC Volunteer Day

East River Esplanade at 62nd Street, Time TBA

A chance to wield your trowel (and learn plenty) from the group that’s pioneered native plant gardening on the UES!!  Details to follow, but mark that calendar!!

No shortage of miscellaneous:

As per Consumer Reports: 3 carbon monoxide alarms you absolutely SHOULD NOT buy!

Seems like California may well be compelling Roundup to include a cancer warning on its label!  

Think we better be prepared for a lot of petition signing, this week commencing with:

Has to a conflicting time for the Alaskan Sportsmen’s Alliance (think fishing gear and lots of guns), but they’re now asking for help protecting the Tongass and Bristol Bay

Support for an EPA ban of IQ-lowering pesticide chlorpyrifos

And if you’d prefer that our food inspection regulations – such as they presently are – not to be dismantled

If you think the endangered vaquita porpoise (only 30 left) should be saved

Back on the sunny side:

In case you haven’t seen this beautifully done map of worldwide waves of immigration…  (Thanks to reader Carol Rinzler for the tip!)

If you think the New York Botanical Garden is the best in the U.S.A, it’d like your vote…  (It’s currently in #3 place!) 

Uh, there’re 4 state budget proposals rolling about up in Albany…

The world’s first rooftop vineyard?  In Brooklyn!!

Where was NYC’s first city hall…?

Be nice when we have some spring to go along with the Central Park Conservancy Spring Guide!

Not that we aren’t up to our ears on the UES, BUT the Hell’s Kitchen Farm Project is something special, complete with teen volunteer opportunities! 

Thank you, DNAInfo, for informing us how to deal with salt on our shoes and boots!!

locally growing, edible weed?  On offer at the Union Square Market?

And this week’s most unfortunate-looking proposed NYC building is

Meanwhile, from the folks who’re bringing us that 100,000 square foot totally ungreen metal eyesore going up at 91st…  A salt shed that’s a candidate for best NYC building of the year…  (Scroll down to the map and you’ll see but 2 past winners are located on the UES…)

lifeline for those owning landmarked homes… 

Twenty NYC questions we all should be able to answer

The great Michigan pizza funeral

GMO defined

And now for the feathered and furry:

Cornell’s Ornithology Lab’s offering an online Warbler Identification Class

Those adorable but rascally Staten Island ponies

Even more adorable puppy/kitty BFFs

Unusual for us, but there’s a more than average touching GoFundMe appeal going for a cat needing surgery

We’re leprechaun green all 365/366 days a year,

UGS

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Happy Shred-a-Thon, UESiders!!

The countdown has begun…

Snow, rain, shine and/or frigid temperatures…

The shredding truck, shredding maestro Scott and UGS foot soldiers will be awaiting your bulging bags, boxes, wagons, carts and jam-packed-with-paper car/taxi trunks!!

(Samascott’s fabulous hot cider will be only a few steps away!!)

It’s going to be really fine next 7 days: 

Saturday, March 11th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

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

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm

Cold?   Wind?  Snow-covered asphalt?  Ha!  Our farmers/fishermen are impervious and at their tables will be American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey, Hudson Valley Duck, Rising Sun Beef, Comfort Bardwell Cheese, Ole Mother Hubbert, Hawthorne Valley, Samascott and Gajeski Farms!

But sorry to say, no Nolasco Farm.

DO KEEP IN MIND:  Only two Saturdays to go, it’s March 25th and our market hosts GrowNYC’s Regional Grain Project and it’s mouth-watering selection of food, all made with NYS’s home-grown grain!!  Yet another special event we can thank the great GrowNYC and Manhattan Market Manager Margaret for!!

Last week’s recycling totals:  77 lbs. batteries; 14 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 12 compost bins; 18 bags of clothes.

You read it right, people!!

12 BINS!!

Saturday, March 11th:  Shred-A-Thon –  Ides of March Edition

82nd Street/St. Stephen Greenmarket, 82nd Street between First &  York, 10am-2pm (rain or shine) 

Almost upon us!!

Just make sure:

NO cardboard or plastic-handled shopping bags.

REMOVE paper clips and spiral bindings. 

NO HARDCOVER BOOKS.   (But paperbacks are fine.)

(Donate those hardcovers at Goodwill or Housing Works.)

As always, thanks to Council Members Kallos and Garodnick for their multiple years of generous Shred-A-Thon support and Assembly Member Seawright for sponsoring the event!

Saturday, March 11th: Welcoming Royalty to Our Parks & Backyards Lecture

Garden Room, 67th Street Library, 328 East 67th Street, 2-4pm

The “royalty” being their majesties, monarch butterflies!!  And the event?  It’s in celebration of the Green Park Garden’s (East River Esplanade and 63rd) certification as an official Monarch Conservation Area!!  The event’s all the more special given that naturalist and butterfly expert Don Riepe will be sharing his wisdom not just about monarchs – their life cycles, their amazing migrations, the threats to their continuing existence – but how we can make all NYC gardens more inviting  to all butterflies/pollinators!  Presented by GreenParkGardenersNYC via a Partnership4Parks grant. Free and with a fabulous door prize:  A gift certificate to the Natural History Museum’s Live Butterfly exhibit!!

Sunday, March 12th & Monday, March 13th:  Just Food Conference

Various locations and time

On the remote chance Just Food’s not been on your radar…  The pioneer urban farming group’s been engaged in bringing fresh, locally grown food to under-served New Yorkers (now more than 250,000) for a decade and more.  This year’s conference theme:  A Call to Collaboration.  Tickets from $40.  For further details… 

Then:

Thursday, March 16th:  Cracking the Code – Fostering Public Participation in Zoning

Museum of the City of New York, 1220 Fifth Avenue at 103rd Street, 6:30

Can we stand idly by as our City sprouts endless spindly towers?  Or should we, at least, be mastering the basics of how what gets built and where!  Quote Jane Jacobs:  ” “Cities have the capability of providing something for everybody only because, and only when, they are created by everybody.”  Yes.  Presented in cooperation with the Municipal Art Society.  Members, $10.  Non-members, $20.  Seniors, educators and students, $15.  For tickets and more... 

Saturday/Sunday, March 18th & 19th and Saturday/Sunday, March 25th & 26th: 22nd Annual Maple Weekend

Around New York State

Twirl a brace drill!  Pound a spile!  Inspect sap flow in the sugarbush!  Savor the aroma of sap boiling down and take the maple taste test at one of 15 NYS syrup producers!  Eat a pancake and syrup breakfast!!  Couldn’t be more family friendly. Organized in cooperation with NYS Department of Agriculture.  Free.  To plan your weekend… 

Sunday, March 26th:  Getting to Zero – Treasure in the Trash at the M11 Garage Tour

343 East 99th Street between First & Second, 11am & 1pm

Sanitation worker Nelson Molina’s spent 20 years extracting/curating items from glorious to strange from the things we’ve thrown out.  Now the accumulation/collection‘s on display on the second floor of the 99th Sanitation garage AND subject of an Open House tour!   (Can’t make this stuff up!)  Open House members, $10.  Non-members, $20.  For more and tickets

And we thought spring 2016 was busy:

Saturday, April 8th:  Randall’s Island Spring Waterway Cleanup

10am-12pm

Sponsored by outdoor brands United by Blue and REI (their efforts resulted  in 177 cleanups and removal of 995,291 pounds of trash in 2016), here’s yet another brilliant volunteer opportunity as we prepare our UES for spring/summer enjoyment!!  All cleanup supplies provided!  Volunteers eligible to win United By Blue prizes! More details to follow…

Saturday, April 22nd:  EARTH DAY with the Pier 90 Project!

Pier 90, East River Esplanade at 90th Street, 12pm

A particularly special place to celebrate Mother Earth…  Among fellow UESiders, on our own East River and enjoying the lovely pier that only months ago community will revived and reclaimed as public space!  Oh, yes, there’ll also be live music and ice cream!!  Then, long about 3pm, environmental educator/ecologist/urban naturalist Gabriel Willow arrives to lead a green riverside tour!  Doesn’t get any better folks!   Yes, and it’s free!!

Thereafter, head south:

Saturday, April 22nd:  EARTH DAY on Union Square

Union Square, 12-7pm 

Seventy-plus environmental non-profits and businesses with the latest and greenest…  A  myriad of kids’ eco activities…  Live performances…  Even more free pleasure, folks!  

Sunday, April 23rd:  It’s My Park Spring Cleaning Day

Stanley Isaacs Park, 96th Street and First Avenue, 11am-3pm

Last fall, Harlem teens and families from Shiray Tefila cultivated, raked and planted who knows how many daffodil, tulip and grape hyacinth bulbs.  Come late April it’ll be time to plant and tidy for park goers’ summer enjoyment!  Tools, plants and excellent refreshments provided…  Even knee-pads for you volunteers to keep!! See you there!!

Saturday, April 29th: People’s Climate March

All Across the Nation and NYC

As has always been the case, it falls to plain old Americans to stand tall for the integrity of our land, air, water and the people living on this Earth.  Stay tuned…

Suddenly, it’s May: 

Friday, Saturday & Sunday, May 5th, 6th & 7th:  Jane’s Walks 2017

In 200-Plus American Cities and All Over NYC

Celebrating the life and work of the great Jane Jacobs, it’s a weekend of free walking tours led by fellow/sister New Yorkers who know and love their neighborhoods.  You could even conceive and lead a tour yourself! Hosted by the Municipal Art Society. For full details…

Sunday, May 7th:  It’s My Park Day – Esplanade Edition

East River Esplanade at 96th Street, 11am-3pm

Year 3 of the Scrape/Paint Esplanade Railings Project.  Remember when every inch of classic railings north and south of 96th was peeling and/or rusting out??  No more and we’ll be spiffing up another block’s worth in ’17… Especially as we’ll now be equipped with revolutionary (at least to us!) new painting mitts (in lieu of brushes and fantastic for doing railings)!!  As always, best painting gear, refreshments and company is provided!!    

All over the landscape miscellany commencing with:

Somehow eye donation  slipped through our net…  

If you’d like the new NYState budget to provide for water quality statewide

Should you think it’d be a good if Olive Gardens and the 1,500 other Darden Group eating spots were more sustainable and green...

How about this for a fabulous high school internship program…  Interning at the NYC District Attorney Cyrus Vance’s office!!  Available to sophmore, juniors and seniors and comes with $150 a week stipend.  Applications must be in by March 15th…   

Whew!!  Waldorf interiors are landmarked!!

But Our Lady of Peace (on 62nd Street) may well be lost to it’s exceptionally devoted congregation

58th Street antique shop was caught dealing in totally illegal mastodon ivory!!

Of course, the UES received the most parking tickets in 2016!  (Less than in 2015 but still the most!)

Yeah!  How come still no M86 bus stop at Second Ave?

Geo-position of the Shred-A-Thon is 40° 46′ 28.056″ N, 73° 57′ 4.8564″ W! 

The Museum of the City of NY is red hot with innovation these days!  Proof:  Its freshly minted Gilded Age Ap!

Add DelanceyPlace.com to the list of day-enhancing sites…  (Thanks to reader Kathleen Treat for the tip!)

Kudos to Kansas City for how they’re tackling homelessness

Same to the NYC Parks who’re giving aid to less well-heeled public spaces!

Trust Atlas Obscura to have searched the world for the best of odd-ball mini dioramas!

Orchids grow wild in NYC?!

Meanwhile, just as the NY Historical Society’s great Hudson River show opens, restorers are at work removing 180 years of paint, dirt and living from the walls of Hudson River master Thomas Cole’s home… Revealing the informal but lovely decorative detail painted by Cole

Oh, animals:

Proud that NYC has a pet crime investigator!!

NYState’s got new freshwater fishing regulations

Are sled dogs beautiful or what…?

pet raccoon

Turn off your cute-o-meters, folks…  This one’s off the charts:  Canine friar (in robe and cowel)!

A magazine devoted to bats

Then there’re moths vs. bats

host of pet adoption events, many on the UES!

And from the Hudson River Almanac:

2/19 – Rockland County, HRM 38: I first spotted a leucistic gray squirrel in my yard in Garnerville in early January. I had not seen it since until today and was concerned that maybe it hadn’t survived the hawks and owls. Happily, it was back today and was cleaning up seeds under the bird feeder and chasing away all the other squirrels. – Caroline McDonald

Everlastingly green,

UGS

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Happy Read Across America  and Banana Cream Pie Days, UESiders!

Don’t know if by accident or design, but lovely that Read Across America coincides with Dr. Suess’s birthday! (He’d be 113 today!)

seemannia sylvarica

seemannia sylvarica

Now, fasten your seat belts firmly for at least the four weeks ahead:

Friday, March 3rd:  NYSkies Astronomy Seminar

McBurney House, 125 West 14th Street between Sixth & Seventh, 6:30-8:30pm 

Starmaster John Pasmino explores the new bright planet in our night sky… Replacing Venus which shone over us all winter and now is rapidly sinking into western twilight is Jupiter, soon-to-be dominant feature of our evening sky. Free!

Saturday, March 4th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

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

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm

Even if it’s below 32, with us will be American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey, Hudson Valley Duck, Rising Sun Beef, Comfort Bardwell Cheese, Ole Mother Hubbert, Hawthorne Valley, Samascott and Gajeski Farms!

Same ify-ness re Nolasco Farm this Saturday…  Their winter stores are running low.

REMINDER:  Coming up March 25th:  Our market hosts GrowNYC’s Regional Grain Project and it’s mouth-watering selection of food and drink, all made with NYS’s home-grown grain!!  Yet another special event we can thank the great GrowNYC and Manhattan Market Manager Margaret for!!

Last week’s recycling totals:  64 lbs. batteries; 28 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 1 pair eye glasses; 11 compost bins; 25 bags of clothes.

YES!!  Back in the 11-bin groove!!

Wednesday, March 8th: Bomb Trains, Oil Barge Anchorages & Trumpish Happenings F0rum

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

The Sierra Club in the persons of Roger Downs (of the Albany chapter) and author Rachel Makleff weigh in on all the above.  Moderated by NYC’s Bonnie Weber. A 28-minute clip from “The Hudson River at Risk” – detailing the the bomb train and oil barge threats – will be screened for attendees.  Free.

Thursday, March 9th:  Free Mammogram Screening

Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright’s Office, 1365 First Avenue between 73rd & 74th, commencing at 9am

All insurances accepted.  Fees and co-payments all waived.  Free for uninsured women over 40 who’ve not had a mammogram in more than a year.  All anyone needs is an appointment (and it’s a must):  800-564-6868!  

Thursday, March 9th:  Spa Day in the 19th Century – Making Up For a Night on the Town

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

So how did great-great-great-great-grandmother come by flawless complexion and soft-as-can-be hands?   With an array of all-natural cream and make-up concoctions we make ourselves with the help of the UES experts on all things 19th Century!!  (Then take in the Museum newest exhibit:  “Dressing for 19th Century New York City!) Members and students, $15.  Non-members, $20. Reservations advised:  212-838-6278. 

The waiting will be over:

Saturday, March 11th:  Shred-A-Thon –  Ides of March Edition

82nd Street/St. Stephen Greenmarket, 82nd Street between First &  York, 10am-2pm (rain or shine) 

A week and a day and counting…

But do remember:

NO cardboard or plastic-handled shopping bags.

REMOVE paper clips and spiral bindings. 

NO HARDCOVER BOOKS.   (But paperbacks are fine.)

(Donate those hardcovers at Goodwill or Housing Works.)

Our thanks to Council Members Garodnick and Kallos for their many years of generous Shred-A-Thon support and Assembly Member Seawright for sponsoring the event!

Saturday, March 11th: Welcoming Royalty to Our Parks & Backyards Lecture

Garden Room, 67th Street Library, 328 East 67th Street, 2-4pm

The “royalty” being their majesties, monarch butterflies!!  Eminent natural and butterfly expert Don Riepe shares his wisdom not just about monarchs – their life cycles, their amazing migrations, the threats to their continuing existence – but how we can lend helping hands to all butterflies once common to NYC.  Presented by GreenParkGardenersNYC via a Partnership4Parks grant. Free and with a fabulous door prize:  A gift certificate to the Natural History Museum’s Live Butterfly exhibit!!

Coming up soon:

Friday, March 24th:  A Hudson River School Legacy Exhibition

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

Whether or not you’re familiar with what’s considered the first American school of art, you’ll be wowed by the amazing assemblage of paintings that’ll be on the Society’s gallery walls…  Our Hudson River Valley seen and rendered by brilliant 19th Century eyes and hands.  Members free.  Non-members, $20.  Seniors,$15. Students, $12.  Children, $6. For more…   

More and more active:

Saturday, April 8th:  Randall’s Island Spring Waterway Cleanup

10am-12pm

Sponsored by outdoor brands United by Blue and REI (their efforts resulted  in 177 cleanups and removal of 995,291 pounds of trash in 2016), here’s yet another brilliant volunteer opportunity as we prepare our UES for spring/summer enjoyment!!  All cleanup supplies provided!  Volunteers eligible to win United By Blue prizes! More details to follow…

Saturday, April 22nd:  EARTH DAY with the Pier 90 Project!

Pier 90, East River Esplanade at 90th Street, 12pm

A particularly special place to celebrate Mother Earth…  Among fellow UESiders, on our own East River and enjoying the lovely pier that only months ago community will revived and reclaimed as public space!  Oh, yes, there’ll also be live music and ice cream!!  Then, long about 3pm, environmental educator/ecologist/urban naturalist Gabriel Willow arrives to lead a green riverside tour!  Doesn’t get any better folks!   Yes, and it’s free!!

Thereafter, head south:

Saturday, April 22nd:  EARTH DAY on Union Square

Union Square, 12-7pm 

Seventy-plus environmental non-profits and businesses with the latest and greenest…  A  myriad of kids’ eco activities…  Live performances…  Even more free pleasure, folks!  

Sunday, April 23rd:  It’s My Park Spring Cleaning Day

Stanley Isaacs Park, 96th Street and First Avenue, 11am-3pm

Last fall, Harlem teens and families from Shiray Tefila cultivated, raked and planted who knows how many daffodil, tulip and grape hyacinth bulbs.  Come late April it’ll be time to plant and tidy for park goers’ summer enjoyment!  Tools, plants and excellent refreshments provided…  Even knee-pads for you volunteers to keep!!  See you there!!

Saturday, April 29th: People’s Climate March

All Across the Nation and NYC

As has always been the case, it falls to plain old Americans to stand tall for the integrity of our land, air, water and the people living on this Earth.  Stay tuned…

May already:

Sunday, May 7th:  It’s My Park Day – Esplanade Edition

East River Esplanade at 96th Street, 11am-3pm

Year 3 of the Scrape/Paint Esplanade Railings Project.  Remember when every inch of classic railings north and south of 96th was peeling and/or rusting out??  No more and we’ll be spiffing up another block’s worth in ’17… Especially as we’ll now be equipped with revolutionary (at least to us!) new painting mitts (in lieu of brushes and fantastic for doing railings)!!  As always, best painting gear, refreshment and company is provided!!    

acer palmatum

acer palmatum

 As ever, worrying miscellany up first:

What can one say except that American companies are deeply involved:  “Deforestation Roars Back”…   

Pretty outrageous NYC sold the magnificent Immigrant Savings Bank building (once home to GrowNYC, OROE, TreesNY and many more city/green non-profits)…  But at least the structure and ground floor entrance will survive, albeit as features of luxury housing

Way over to the bright side: 

At last!  The City’ll be bearing down on buildings without numbers!!

Much wisdom UESider Jacquelyn Ottman’s take on NYC recycling in NYC…  (Especially love The Library of Things approach!)  

Yes, indeed, deodorized recycled plastic exists and it’s really good!

That P.C. Richard on East 14th?  Not long for this world

Who was the man with so buildings and institutions carrying the Lehman name?

Interesting Pratt’s done a report on the importance of auto repair shops!

Robots take a quantum leap…  (Happily, they’re American-made!) 

turraea nilotica

turraea nilotica

Hey, animals:

Really? There’re presently but a handful of grizzly bears in the uber wilderness North Cascade Mountains… Grizzlies that are an integral part of the clean water/abundant wildlife equation!!  (If you support the Park Service’s effort to increase the Cascade’s grizzly population…)

New species?  Not that it excuses the many – known and unknown – disappearing from Planet Earth, but to paraphrase “Smithsonian Magazine”, in the present we’re identifying new-to-us-humans-life at an astonishing rate!!

New species alert!!  As in the candy-striped hermit crab

How weird and wonderful is this:  Some magic component of Komodo dragon blood could well end our antibiotic crisis!! 

How about this for an arcane NYS activity to pursue with one’s dog…  Horn hunting!!

Russia has not 1 but 2 cat museums and we have none….??!!!  (Yes, we missed March 1st being World Cat Day…)

All hail the New Yorkers who assisted a raccoon marooned for hours atop a pole!

What would a week be without some Hudson River Almanac wisdom:

2/14 – Croton Point, HRM 35: While beachcombing today, I found some large bivalves (clams) along the tide line. I had never seen them this large or abundant. – Gareth Hougham

Wedge Rangia

Wedge Rangia

[Wedge rangia (Rangia cuneata) are a bivalve mollusk native to more southerly coastal and inshore brackish waters such as Delaware Bay and Chesapeake Bay. It is believed that they were inadvertently introduced to the lower Hudson River 25 years ago through the ballast water of commercial vessels. They are now found as far upriver as Newburgh. – Dave Strayer.]

We dream in green,

UGS

 


 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Happy WWII Flag Raising on Iwo Jima, UESiders…

Moments in history don’t get more symbolic, pivotal or worthy of remembrance…  

Or dwarfing of the date’s other designation:  Love Your Pet Day.

(You bet you’re loved, Fido/Fluffy/Tweetie Bird/Mr. Gerbil!!)

On to the week ahead: 

Saturday, February 25th:  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, Hudson Valley Duck, Rising Sun Beef, Comfort Bardwell Cheese, Ole Mother Hubbert, Hawthorne Valley, Samascott and Gajeski Farms!

Fingers crossed but ify on the Nolasco Farm front…  Their winter stores are running thin.

REMINDER:  Coming up March 25th at our Market:  We’ll be hosting GrowNYC’s Regional Grain Project and it’s amazing array of food and drink all made with NYState-grown grain!!  Yet another special event brought to us by the fabulous GrowNYC and Manhattan Market Manager Margaret!!

Last week’s recycling totals:  77 lbs. batteries; 32 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 2 pairs eye glasses; 10 1/2 compost bins; 28 bags of clothes.

Yes!!  We like 10-plus bin weeks!!

By February 28th:  Vote for the One Book All New Yorkers Should Read!!

Head immediately to http://www1.nyc.gov/site/mome/initiatives/1book1ny.page!!! (Winner will be announced in March!)

Thursday, March 9th:  Free Mammogram Screening

Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright’s Office, 1365 First Avenue between 73rd & 74th, commencing at 9am

All insurances accepted.  Fees and co-payments all waived.  Free for uninsured women over 40 who’ve not had a mammogram in more than a year.  All anyone needs is an appointment (and it’s a must):  800-564-6868!  

Saturday, March 11th:  Shred-A-Thon –  Ides of March Edition

82nd Street/St. Stephen Greenmarket, 82nd Street between First &  York, 10am-2pm (rain or shine) 

Closer and closer… 

Just keep in mind:

NO cardboard or plastic-handled shopping bags.

REMOVE paper clips and spiral bindings. 

NO HARDCOVER BOOKS.   (But paperbacks are fine.)

(Donate those hardcovers at Goodwill or Housing Works.)

As ever, a giant thank you to Council Members Kallos and Garodnick for their many years of generous Shred-A-Thon grants and Assembly Member Seawright for sponsoring the event!

Sunday, March 12th:  New York Theater Ballet’s “Cinderella”

Schimmel Center, 3 Spruce Street, 3pm

The Dancing Clock…  Those not-so-nice stepsisters…  Everyone’s favorite princess-to-be…  And–  Well, you know the story.  Made all the better when dancing’s added!  With choreography by Donald Mahler, costumes by Metropolitan Opera’s  Sylvia Taalsohn Nolan and sets by Gillian Bradshaw Smith.  Perfect for kids of all ages! (Come at 2pm for fun like prince/princess crown decorating, Cinderella’s magic pumpkin game and a royal photo booth!)   Adults, $20.  Children, $10.  For more and tickets... 

By Monday, March 13th:  Nominate  Your Favorite Library Branch!!

Go immediately to http://www.nyclibraryawards.org

Five NYC Library Grand Prize Award winners score a fat $20,000!!  Five finalists win $10,000!!  The 67th Street Branch…  The 96th Street Branch…  The Webster Branch…  The Roosevelt Island Branch…   The Yorkville Library…  Lots of libraries to love on the UES!!

Miscellany…  Miscellaneous wrong-footedness first:

Say what?  Governor Cuomo’s budget includes a 4% cut in library funding?  (Should you disagree…)

Must read:  The Times’ “The Bee Mogul”!!   (Made the international edition, too!)  

Or that the Nuclear Regulatory Agency considering approval of a new dump for radioactive material in West Texas, with shipping through major population centers to a poor, largely Hispanic hamlet? (Just the facts, people.)

Like what more Appalachian streams’ll be looking like now that coal slag and tailings can be dumped in them again:

coal_stream_pollution_fb-375x211 

Not that NYState doesn’t have water problems of its own…  Immediately coming to mind:  Newburgh (lots of residents still haven’t had their blood tested) and Lake Erie...    

Into sunlight:

LOVE this idea:  The Empire State Trail…  750-miles long…  Multi-use…  Extending from the New York harbor through the Adirondacks and as far north as the state extends to Lake Erie (!) and Buffalo!!  Set to be finished in 2020!!

Beginning with this from Justmeans:  The good news in the European Commission’s “Second Report on the State of the Energy Union” has almost been lost amid the angst over the future of the European Union. The report finds that “renewable energy is now cost-competitive and sometimes cheaper than fossil fuels, employs over one million people in Europe, attracts more investments than many other sectors, and has reduced our fossil fuels imports bill by €16 billion.” These facts support the report’s assertion that Europe is on track to meet its ambitious 2020 energy and climate targets. And its larger perspective conclusion is truly eye opening: during 1990 to 2015, the EU’s combined GDP grew by 50% while total emissions fell by 22%. Now that’s a bottom line that adds up to both literal profits and air-clearing benefits.

Abundant cheers for Cedar Rapids, Iowa, the Monarch Research Project  and the 1,000 of bee-friendly acres they’ll be creating!!   (The first 199 acres will be seeded this spring!!) (There’ll be bee and butterfly plant havens in the Green Park Garden and Bicycle Island Gardens, too!!) 

We’re used to see Lewis B. & Dorothy Cullman’s names at the beginning of countless hours of PBS programming, but who knew they were plant people too?  So, here’s the lowdown on Cullman-funded plant research at the Botanical Garden!

Trust the Greenwich Village Historical Society to get the job done…  i.e. prevent tampering with one of NYC’s 3 remaining Seamen’s hotels and barring the way for another deed restriction lift!  

Unsatisfied with your internet speed?  NYS Attorney General Schneiderman would like to know!!  Read…  Then measure that speed and send to the AG

Live in a building with 10 or more units?  Yeah, there’s a (free) training course involved, BUT you and fellow residents are eligible for free electronics pick-up or even – for 100-plus units – a free E-recycling bin!  10-plus unit buildings can have their own clothes recycling bin, too!! 

Think the EPA should move ahead with banning two toxic chemicals – methylene chloride and N-methylpyrrolidone (NMP) – found in common paint removers/strippers…?

Toronto’s sure taking an interesting approach to dealing with apartment quality/repair and problem landlords

For those wondering why St. John the Divine was landmarked just last week..

If only this guy (and his machine) would come to First Avenue…

Wine and your health?  The latest from “Consumer Reports”

Holy crow!  Competitive eating has a pre-Coney Island history

Ready for animals: 

Guess what?  Just as references to climate change have magically disappeared from federal government sites, so have docs and records relevant to animal cruelty..  Puppy mills, horse soring (gait improvement via injected irritants, roadside zoos and more would now seem to be AOK.  (Should you object…)  

Meanwhile in Africa…  A hero’s providing water to drought-stricken animals!   

The reputedly oldest rug in the world ‘s woven in the shape of a – what else? – cat!

Year round New Yorker, the Northern Cardinal

An agricultural fair in Paris?  Paris, France??  Salon International de l’Agriculture, no less!!  (Black cow “Fine” is the official mascot and current media star!) 

Rescue dogs as ball boys at the Brazil Tennis Open...?!  (They’ll be returning for Year 2 duty on February 27th!) 

What better way to close than a Hudson River Almanac excerpt:

2/4 – Manhattan: On a recent bicycle ride in downtown Manhattan, I spotted a lone bufflehead on the Hudson River across from Battery Park. In Battery Park there were dozens of brant and Canada geese eating grass. Continuing up along the East Rover I came upon two double-crested cormorants. Although I see fewer of them in winter, these two were actively fishing. I also saw a single pair of common mergansers; the female’s head feathers make her look like a little maestro!   

Female Common Merganser

Female Common                         Merganser

[The hen common merganser is quite gorgeous. With her fly-away red-feathered head, she always reminds me of Elsa Lanchester’s “Bride of Frankenstein.” – Tom Lake.]

2/8 – Manhattan: In early afternoon we went to check our collection gear at the River Project’s sampling station on the lighthouse tender Lilac at Pier 25 in Hudson River Park. It was low tide and unseasonably warm. Our crab pots were empty but one of our killifish traps had caught a young-of-the-year striped bass (85 millimeters). We also caught far more tiny mud crabs (about the size of a lima bean) than we had been lately. –  Melissa Rex, Jacqueline Wu

[In the early 1980s, there was an environmental battle to stop a project called Westway that would have substantially altered the inshore ecology of the Hudson River along the west side of Manhattan by destroying piers and filling in the areas between the water’s edge and the pier-head lines. One of the arguments that helped stop the project as proposed was the theory that young-of-year [YOY] and yearling striped bass (Morone saxatilis), such as the one captured today by the River Project, wintered in the inter-pier areas. Researchers tagged and released many YOY and yearling striped bass from the piers in the fall and then recaptured them in late winter in the same locations, indicating that they were wintering there. Other scientists demonstrated that a substantial portion of the total Hudson River population of these juvenile fish was present along Manhattan’s west side during winter months. After the project was halted, the west side of Manhattan was developed into an ecologically-sound park, and the adjacent water areas were designated an estuarine sanctuary. –  Dennis Suszkowski.]

We live to be green,

UGS

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

/

Happy President’s Day, UESiders!!

Another 3-day weekend!  

And mighty fine days thereafter:

Friday, February 17th:  NYSkies Astronomy Seminar

McBurney House, 125 West 14th Street between Sixth & Seventh, 6:30-8:30pm 

Starmaster John Pasmino illuminates the astronomy in the saying “March comes in like a lion and leaves like a lamb” and identifies the bright stars of spring!  Free and always fabulous.

Saturday, February 11th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

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

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm

Back at their tables will be American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey, Hudson Valley Duck, Rising Sun Beef, Comfort Bardwell Cheese, Nolasco, Ole Mother Hubbert, Hawthorne Valley, Samascott and Gajeski Farms!

NEWS FLASH and coming up March 25th:  With us will be GrowNYC’s Regional Grain project!!

Hard to believe that not so long ago, near to no grains were grown in our state.  Then GrowNYC stepped in and – come 3/25 –  we’ll be treated to the fruit of the NYS grain-growing renaissance they’ve created…  From pasta to beer to crackers to spirits and more!  (And, of course, the fabulous Greenmarket baked goods we enjoy every week are all made with the NYS grain!)  Yet another special event devised by uber Market Manager Margaret who’s always making our markets that much better!

Last week’s recycling totals:  73 lbs. batteries; 22 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 10 compost bins; 27 bags of clothes.

Excellent for a miserably cold day!!  

Saturday, February 18th & Sunday, February 19th:  NYS Free Fishing Weekend

Statewide

Been longing to get your–  Let’s say…  Hands wet and experience the joys of angling?  Here’s your chance – especially if your focus is ice fishing – and it’s totally free!!  For more, including info/advice for beginners…   

Saturday, February 18th & Sunday, February 26th:  “Saving Jamaica Bay” Documentary

Saturday – Channel 13, 1pm & Sunday – WLIW Channel 21, 9pm

How one relentless NY community is overcoming the one-two-three punch of years of pollution, Hurricane Sandy and enduring government inertia!  You go, Jamaica Bay people!!  (To see the trailer…)

Coming up fast:

Tuesday, February 28th:  “In Search of Every Bird on the Brooklyn Waterfront” Talk

Reidy Hall, Unitarian Church of All Souls,1175 Lexington Avenue between 79th & 80th, 7pm

When avid birder Heather Wolf moved from Florida to NYC, she wondered how many feather friends she might find in nearby Brooklyn Bridge.  And the answer was…?  A lot!!  So many she wrote a book about her experience and the enjoyment she’s had.   Free. 

Friday, March 10th:  Preserving the Mighty Oak Forum

Ross Lecture Hall, New York Botanical Garden, 2900 Southern Boulevard, The Bronx, 8:30am-1:30pm

Four reigning experts weigh on how to meet the challenge of the increasing number of invasive pests and diseases now threatening a tree that’s central to our northeast landscape/environment and national iconography.  NYBG members, $30. Non-members, $35.  For more and tickets… 

Saturday, March 11th:  Shred-A-Thon –  Ides of March Edition

82nd Street/St. Stephen Greenmarket, 82nd Street between First &  York, 10am-2pm (rain or shine) 

Better start sorting!!

Just keep in mind:

NO cardboard or plastic-handled shopping bags.

REMOVE paper clips and spiral bindings. 

NO HARDCOVER BOOKS.   (But paperbacks are fine.)

(Donate those hardcovers at Goodwill or Housing Works.)

As ever, we thank Council Members Kallos and Garodnick for their many years of generous Shred-A-Thon grants and Assembly Member Seawright for sponsoring the event!

Sundays through March 13th:  Winter Seals & Water Birds Eco Cruises

Pier 16, South Street Seaport, 12-2pm

Amazing the wildlife that calls our city home during the snowy months…  Common and red-throated loons, horned grebes, bufflehead and red-breasted mergansers, greater scaup. cormorants , long-tailed ducks and harbor seals to name but a few!  Hot chocolate included!!  Adults, $35.  Children, $25.  (NYC Audubon members get a $5 discount!)  For more and tickets

Out there:

Wednesdays, April 5th, 12th, 19th & 26th:  Historic Districts Council’s Spring Preservation School

Neighborhood Preservation Center, 232 East 11th Street, 6pm

Think  Preservation 101…  From land use to architectural styles to reading architectural renderings to waging a preservation campaign and beyond!  Choose 1 session or all 4!!   $15 per class or $50 for all 4.  For more and to sign up… 

On to the miscellaneous, bad foot first:

In the Are-They-Kidding/What’s-Wrong-With-Us Department:  Bad enough that Frederick Law Olmsted’s Staten Island home is crumbling, BUT the original Erasmus Hall – construction largely funded by Alexander Hamilton – is also falling apart!!  

Neutral ground:

giant cement plant’s coming to Queens

And here’s what going up catty-corner from Bloomingdale’s on Third

Smiling now:

NYS DEC’s just updated the design of their Trail Supporter Patch:

patchblue200

Recognition for those who donate $5 to the fund devoted to maintaining, enhancing and expanding our hiking, biking and horseback trails.  And what trails might there be in NYC, you ask?  Some of the state’s most highly recommended!  As in Staten Island’s Clay Pit Ponds State Park and Saint Francis Woodland, New York Botanical Gardens and Central Park!   

Circa 1850 Brooklyn cheese aging caves

A giant tunnel borer buried under Park Avenue

Critter time:

Have to say some pre-2016 “predator control”/trophy hunting practices once allowed in Alaskan wildlife refuges were pretty grotesque… Like shooting pups and cubs while they’re still so young they’re in their birthing dens. Should you think new, more humane regulations should be maintained

Meanwhile and no surprise, the new administration’s postponed endangered designation for bees…  

This beautiful barred owl was spotted in Harlem last week:

Barred Owl

Barred Owl

An airport animal control manager that’s a…  Dog!!

A kitty with titanium implants

Don’t miss PBS’s great “Spy in the Wild”!! 

Okay, mea culpa that February 9th was Alligators in Sewers Day and we missed it…  A goodly number of our sister/fellow New Yorkers not only did not, but competed in a AISD/NYC trivia contest, received their own rubber alliga–  Well, you read!!    

We close with a bit of youthful poetry from the Hudson River Almanac:

2/1 – Putnam County, HRM 52:

– On a Mountain Top
On a mountain top the flowers are sleeping and the snow is falling.
The snowflakes are coming and this means winter is coming to us.
The winds are calm and the cocoa is ready in the cabin.
The deer are going home; the squirrels are sleeping.
And we are waking on a mountain top.
     – Thea Nazario, 3rd Grade, Lakeview Elementary, Mahopac

Our best,

UGS

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized

Happy Valentine’s Day and International Day of Women & Girls in Science, UESiders!!

Love and science…  What a combo!!

Let there only be more!!

As for the busy week ahead:

Saturday, February 11th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

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

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm

At their tables will the amazingly frost-resistant  American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey, Hudson Valley Duck, Rising Sun Beef, Comfort Bardwell Cheese, Nolasco, Ole Mother Hubbert, Hawthorne Valley, Samascott and Gajeski Farms!

Last week’s recycling totals:  67 lbs. batteries; 16 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 9 compost bins; 28 bags of clothes.

Just shows how far we’ve come…  9 bins now feels kind of puny and sad.  

As we resume our 11 bin groove…!  

Saturday, February 11th:  6th Annual Central Park Ice Festival!

Naumburg Bandshell, mid-Park from 66th to 72nd Streets, 3-7pm

11-inches of snow?  Consider ourselves prepared to relish an afternoon of ice-sculpting with chain saws, molding your own miniature version of a CP classic sculpture, CP trivia, the festival’s signature Silent Disco and food truck treats from Wafels & Dinges, Crepe Crave, Uncle Gussy Greek and the Don Cafe!  Free!!  For more and to RSVP...

Sunday, February 12th:  Second Avenue Winter DayLife 

LowLine Lab, 140 Esssex Street between Rivington & Stanton Streets, 11am-4pm

Pickle dogs?  Pizza balls?  Portobello subs?  All that and more from food meccas of the great Essex Street Market and served up in the miraculous LowLine Lab underground garden!   Free!  For more

Mondays, February 13th to April 17th at the Webster Library Branch (11am-3pm) & Fridays, February 10th to April 14th at the 67th Street Library Branch (10am-2pm):   FREE AARP Tax Preparation!

Webster Branch, 1465 York Avenue at 78th Street / 67th Street Branch, 328 East 67th Street

AARP volunteers – certified by the IRS –  prepare all returns at zero cost to you for preparation or electronic filing! Do make sure you bring all necessary docs (W-2s, 1099s, support for expenses and deductions).  First come, first served.  And, yes, that right…  100% free!

Thursday, February 16th: How Do We Keep Ourselves from Freezing and Keep the Planet from Burning Forum

Patagonia Soho,  72 Greene Street, 6-8:30pm

Arjun Makhijani, Project Scientist at the Institute for Energy and Environmental Research, fills us in how we can make “Residential Heating and Cooling Climate-Friendly in New York State.”  Couldn’t be more timely as Governor Cuomo just announced a proposed $15M rebate program for renewable heating and cooling.  Organized by Alliance for a Green Economy.  Free!

Sunday, February 19th:  Washington’s Birthday Ball

Mount Vernon Hotel Museum & Garden, 421 East 61st Street, 

Yes, you can celebrate the birthday of our Nation’s First President as New Yorkers did in the 19th Century! Costumed dancers perform and teach traditional country dances.  Festivities include toasts to the great Washington and historic refreshments, including Washington Cake!  Museum tour and family-friendly scavenger hunt are also included.  Members and kids under 12, $10.  Non-members, $15 Adults.  Reservations required  or call the Museum:  212-838-6878.
Then:

Saturday, February 25th:  Practice ACT, SAT & SHSAT Tests

67th Street Library, 328 East 67th Street 

Think test run…  After which you learn your teen’s strengths and weaknesses so they can be addressed for max performance on the real thing!   Free.  For more and/or to register:  info@praxistutors.com.

Thursday, March 2nd to Wednesday, March 8th:  10th Annual NY ReelAbilities Film Festival

Numerous Venues and Various Times

And we quote:  “The ReelAbilities Film Festival is the largest festival in the country dedicated to promoting awareness and appreciation of the lives, stories and artistic expressions of people with different abilities.”  Just right after Oscar Season. Check out the great line-up!  

Yes, you’ve been waiting:

Saturday, March 12th:  Shred-A-Thon –  Ides of March Edition

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

RAIN OR SHINE!!

Will we or will we not fill the shredding truck to the brim again?  (The Shredding Force seems to be with us!) 

Will we average more than a Shredee every 30 seconds?  (Smart money’s says we will!!)

Just remember:

NO cardboard or plastic-handled shopping bags.

REMOVE paper clips and spiral bindings. 

NO HARDCOVER BOOKS.   (But paperbacks are fine.)

(Donate your hardcovers at Goodwill or Housing Works.)

As always our thanks to Council Members Kallos and Garodnick for their many years of generous Shred-A-Thon grants and Assembly Member Seawright for sponsoring the event!

Mark those calendars:

Saturday, April 8th:  Randall’s Island Spring Waterway Cleanup

10am-12pm

Sponsored by outdoor brands United by Blue and REI (their efforts resulted  in 177 cleanups and removal of 995,291 pounds of trash in 2016), here’s yet another brilliant volunteer opportunity as we prepare our UES for spring/summer enjoyment!!  All cleanup supplies provided!  Volunteers eligible to win United By Blue prizes! More details to follow…

Saturday, April 29th: People’s Climate March

All Across the Nation and NYC

As has always been the case, it falls to Americans to stand tall for the integrity of our land, air, water and the people living on Mother Earth.  Stay tuned…

Pinus Ponderosa

Pinus Ponderosa

Miscellany, a contentious item first:

As in the debate concerning the statue of Dr. J. Marion Sims located at Fifth and 103rd

Happier now:

Tip of the hat to IKEA for its reusable flat-pack refugee housing

Good on Target, too, for phasing out personal care products containing poisons like formaldehyde, parabens, phthalates and more.    (If you think personal care product giant Unilever should do the same…)   (And time to start reading labels, if you aren’t already!) 

More like a mini-nod to Starbucks for pledging to serve up poultry free of “routinely used antibiotics” by 2020… 

Need updated posters/info materials for your recycling area

Check out this 248-year old NYBG daisy plant… 

Sigh…  Oak wilt’s spreading in our city and it’s amazing/shocking how it spreads

Oh, yeah, it’s hardy, but ivy around trees

A kelp forest off the British Columbia coast

A kelp forest off the British Columbia coast

Yes, animals:

Indeed, squids do have their own language… 

The latest great American zoo rivalry?  Which can tweet the cutest animal pix!  (NYC’s doing well!)

kitten and bubble gum

And from the Hudson River Almanac:

1/20 – Atlantic Ocean: A year ago today we received our final satellite transmission indicating the whereabouts of the gray seal rescued from the Hudson River in Saratoga County, 175 miles from the sea, by the Riverhead Foundation on December 4, 2015. This was possibly only the second gray seal ever recorded for the Hudson. The seal had become marooned above the federal dam in Troy, trapped at Lock One of the Hudson-Champlain Canal in Half Moon. Named “Charlie” by the Riverhead Foundation, it was rehabilitated, fitted with a tag (150975) and satellite transmitter, and released on December 10 at Ponquogue Beach, Hampton Bays, Long Island.

Over the next 41 days Charlie, monitored by satellite, traveled northeast past Block Island, then north into Narragansett Bay, past Newport, Rhode Island, through the Cape Cod Canal into Cape Cod Bay where he spent three weeks. He then left Cape Cod Bay and moved south past Martha’s Vineyard, Nantucket Island, and into the open sea. Our final transmission occurred on January 20, 2016, indicating that Charlie was moving toward Little Gull Island in Block Island Sound, a place where gray seals are known to congregate in winter. At that point, it was thought that the battery on his transmitter had failed.

This was another wonderful example of the connectivity between the Hudson River and the greater western Atlantic Ocean. – Tom Lake.

1/25 – Brooklyn: I spotted six tundra swans flying northeast to southwest over Brooklyn today. Keep your eyes open for them. –  Shane Blodgett

[Tundra swans are often called “America’s native swan.” Their common name refers to their summer nesting range north of Hudson Bay in the Arctic tundra. They can usually be heard calling long before they are seen, which leads to another frequently used colloquial name, “whistling swan.” David Sibley remarks that distant flocks sound like “baying hounds.” Tundra swans are occasional visitors to the Hudson Valley during spring and fall migrations. Tom Lake.]

A warm and fuzzy adieu on a snowy afternoon… 

Yours in greenness,

UGS

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Uncategorized