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Happy New York State Path Through History Weekend, UESiders!!

Statewide, of course, with many choice sites in NYC!!

Meanwhile…

Only mid-June and we’ve already amassed 5 air alert days…  Ugh!!

More reason still to nurture our trees (like giving them big drinks of water on torrid days yet to come)…

On to the week ahead:

Friday, June 16th:  NYSkies Astronomy Seminar

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

Star master John Pasmino’s subject this time out:  The summer Milky Way and surrounding stars!!  Free and, as always, so fun!

Saturday, June 10th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

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

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm

Market Manager Margaret scoop on this week, “Lots of sugar snap peas, strawberries, heads of lettuce and greenhouse tomatoes!!    Samascott’s got strawberries and they are incredible!! Get there early because they are sure to go quickly!  Same for Sikking flowers…  Last Saturday, they sold out by noon!!  Oh, yes!!  Green Meadows Farms and their fabulous shitake mushrooms are back with us, too!!” 

And,also at their tables  will  be American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey, Hudson Valley Duck, Valley Shepher, Rising Sun Beef, Alewife,  Hawthorne Valley, and Gajeski  Farms!!  

Lucky us, the Master Knife Sharpener will be at her table, too!!

What a fabulous group!

Last 2 week’s recycling totals –   6/1:  42 lbs. batteries; 17 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges;  9 compost bins (Sanitation only gave us 9 and poor Moises did a lot of heavy tamping down!) and 42 bags of clothes.  6/9 –  66 lbs. batteries; 14 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 24 pairs of eyeglasses; 11 compost bins and 22 bags of clothes.

(DOS gave us only 9 bins??!!  Hey, DOS!!  We are so much better than that!!)

Thursday, June 22nd:  Oak Wilt Workshop

Grand Conference Room, Trees New York, 100 Gold Street, 6:30pm

Slowly but surely oak wilt’s making inroads among NYC trees…  Identified just last fall in Brooklyn’s Greenwood Cemetery!!  An essential defense: knowledgeable New Yorkers able to identify the symptoms and report an afflicted tree!!  Be one of those knowledgeable New Yorkers!!   Free.  For more and to reserve a place…  

Saturday, June 24th:  Great Backyard Camp Out Day

Anywhere You Can Set Up a Grill, 12:00am-11:59pm

A park…  A campground…  Your backyard…  Your apartment terrace…  The idea’s for Americans to get themselves outdoors  and revel in it!!  Organized by the National Wildlife Federation and they’re hoping for at least 100,000 participants (sleeping out not required)!!    For more (there’re even prizes!)…  And New York State campgrounds… 

SUNDAY, JUNE 25th:  92nd STREET GREENMARKET RE-OPENS!! 

92nd Street at First Avenue, 9am-4pm

Fruit!  Vegs!  Baked goods!  Seafood!!  Honey!  Compost collection!!  Old 92nd Street friends and new ones (Consider Bardwell from 82nd with their – goat cheese, pork and maple syrup!  Central Bakery’s and their fantastic breads and foccaccia!) Just 2 more weeks till 92nd Street returns!!

Coming up soon:

Tuesday, June 27th:  How Are Parks Built?  The NYC Parks Capital Process

Southbridge Towers Community Room, 90 Beekman Street, Manhattan, 6:30pm

Ever wondered how the playground, dog run or ball field in your park got there?   Here’s our chance to learn basics on how NYC Parks funds, designs and constructs our green spaces…  And how we citizens might make them even better!!  Organized by the City Parks Foundation.  Free but you’ll need to register...

Then it’s July:

Thursday, July 6th:  Green Your Event Seminar

GrowNYC Project Farmhouse, 76 East 13th St,  6:30pm

Master the fine art of reducing waste and maximizing recycling at festivals, block parties, athletic events…  You name it…  From the folks who really know how!!  Free but reservations a must!

Saturday, July 15th & Sunday, July 16th:  Formula E Grand ePrix New York

Red Hook, The Brooklyn Waterfront

Electric car racing arrives in NYC!!  And who owns one of the eTeams?  None other than Michael Andretti, son of designated Race Driver (of non- electric Formula 1 cars in the 20th) Century Mario!!  $42-$150.   For more and tickets

Miscellany, stretching activist muscles first:

If you think NYState’s solar farms should be pollinator friendly

And if you also believe that NYState – like Minnesota – should protect those same pollinators from death by pesticide… 

And if you’re also of the opinion that our National Monuments should remain  National Monuments

Then, on the excellent news front:

Assembly Member Seawright was the force behind passage of A.7214, legislation requiring the New York State Department of Health to conduct a study on the high incidence of asthma in Manhattan and to prepare a remediation plan…  Legislation especially pertinent to UES and the area adjacent to the 91st Street MTS!!   (The Senate’s also passed the bill and it’s now en route to the Governor.)

Then there’s this from  the most excellent 1000+ Friends (of Parks):  “When was the last time you saw a press release headline like this: “VETERANS GROVE REOPENS WITH NEW PLAY EQUIPMENT, MONTHS AHEAD OF SCHEDULE”   It happened in Queens last week when NYC Parks Queens Borough Commissioner Dorothy Lewandowski today joined Queens Borough President Melinda Katz, Council Member Daniel Dromm, students from St. Bartholomew Academy, and local community members in Elmhurst, Queens, to celebrate the reopening of Veterans Grove after a $2.3 million reconstruction project. The scope of work included a full makeover of the park and surrounding sidewalk, and was completed months ahead of the expected timeline. ”  Double wow, huh?  (Read the rest of the story…)

Prince was an anonymous donor fostering solar energy entrepreneurship!! 

shout-out for Rochester, just named NYState’s 11th Certified Climate Smart Community!!

Okay, so it is the day after Flag Day…  Still fascinating to learn the ins and outs of our 5 boroughs’ separate, distinct and totally individual flags!!

tip of the hat to how Akron’s adapting to its population decline:  Converting a Robert Moses-style belt highway into smaller streets, parks and an urban forest!

Might we have had enough of clever neighborhood renames?  (But fines?)

Poking a toe off the reservation: 

Ever hear of The City Reliquary?  Us neither, but it’s just put out a request for proposals for its upcoming exhibition, “NYC Trash:  Past, Present & Future”!  You don’t have to be a waste management expert, collector of NYC Department of Sanitation ephemera or even an enthusiast of reuse/recycling…  You can just be an ordinary mortal with an interest the past, present, or future of trash in New York City!!  So, let your mind creatively wander and then contact Sarah Celentano, nfo@cityreliquary.org, 718-782-4842!  (Thanks to reader Nick Knoll for the tip!)

Just a tiny taste of the animal kingdom:

ALERT:  There’s a LOST COCKATIEL on the UES…  “Muey” went missing today (Thursday) near Rockefeller University at 64th and York.  Muey’s yellow and grey with orange cheeks.   Call Tara: 347-205-3332.

For those of you crazy enough to have a cable package so vast it includes Epix channels, don’t miss “Eagle Huntress” now being offered On Demand!!

Green from the ground up,

UGS

 

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Happy  World Oceans Day, UESiders!!

And the theme of the 2017 celebration?

Plastic pollution…  Both in the water and on beaches!! 

(Why are we not surprised?!)

Shall we all double down on  our recycling efforts??   

On to the week ahead:

Saturday, June 10th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

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

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm

Uber Market Manager Margaret speaks, “Samascott has Strawberries and they are incredible!! Get there early because they are sure to go quickly.  Not only is Cherry Lane back but Lew’s got greenhouse tomatoes, some lettuce, squash and more this week.  Old Mother Hubbert now has maple syrup and Rose is making cheese! She has several different flavors, all delicious and all made by hand with milk from her own cows!! 

And, of course, also with us will  be American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey, Hudson Valley Duck, Rising Sun Beef,  Alewife,   Hawthorne Valley,  Sikking Flowers and Gajeski  Farms!!

Lucky us, the Master Knife Sharpener will be at her table, too!!

Last week’s recycling totals –  TBA

As the bin count tension builds… 

Wednesday, June 14th:  Young Leaders for a Green Future Forum

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

Could there be anything more cheerful than the presentation of a host of green initiatives by an inspired  great bunch of students?!   The latest in the NY Sierra Club’s Sustainability Series.  Suggested donations:  Adults, $6.  Students, $3.  

Coming up soon:

Thursday, June 15th:  Theodore Roosevelt Park Environmental Impact Hearing

Museum of Natural History, Central Park West at 79th (enter on Columbus Avenue), 6pm

Looks like the Natural History Museum’s about to take that 1/4 acre bite out of Theordore Roosevelt Park…  But citizens have a last chance to weigh in on both sides.    To review the opposing arguments and register to speak…   

Thursday, June 22nd:  Oak Wit Workshop

Grand Conference Room, Trees New York, 100 Gold Street, 6:30pm

Slowly but surely oak wilt’s making inroads among NYC trees…  Identified just last fall in Brooklyn’s Greenwood Cemetery!!  An essential defense: knowledgeable New Yorkers able to identify the symptoms and report an afflicted tree!!  Be one of those knowledgeable New Yorkers!!   Free.  For more and to reserve a place...  

Thursday, Friday & Saturday, July 13th, 14th & 15th:  25th Annual NYS ReLeaf Conference

St. John’s University, Queens

Calling all Tree People!!   We’re talking 3 days of workshops, tours, illustrious tree-centric speakers, a screening of the 9/11 Memorial film “The Trees” and a picnic!  Tickets, $0 – $120.   For full details and to register

Miscellany…  The good and the grouchy:

Maryland’s now joined California as the two states to prohibit routine antibiotic use on farm animals!  (Come on, NYS!!)

Great that NYC passed reforms to the Board of Standard and Appeals…  Meaning we the people’ll have at least a little more say in how big/tall/massive future buildings can be!!

If only he’d seen the light before setting the 91st Street MTS in motion, but good on  former Mayor Bloomberg for his stance on the Paris Climate Agreement and offer to cover America’s $14M share of the accord’s budget.

Meanwhile, Comptroller Stringer’s just announced that the NYC pension fund will be divesting itself of investments in private prisons. 

Happy as we are to have more affordable housing on the UES, check out the latest addition to that short list:   321 East 60th Street…  Midblock on 60th (albeit self-categorizing as “Sutton”), next door to the Sapphire Gentleman’s Club, 3-4 stories  wrapped in a Queensboro Bridge ramp with ramp traffic speeding by on both of the buiding’s street level exposures, its principal tenant amenity (the other being for-charge parking) being a laundry room and views either of the side of the ramp or a pair of giant billboards  some 30 feet away.  (Do the multiplication for the units reserved for mobility/hearing/vision impaired!) nviting, huh?  

Be prepared for the mosquito season

The Times instructs on how to approach our ecological travels

In the who knew department:  Free e-books on the NYC subway and timed to fit our rides!! (Been available since August of 2016!!)

Apple Music first series on its new video platform…  “Planet of the Apps”! 

Macy’s 4th of July fireworks return to the East River in 2017!!

Animals:

And the Bird of the Week is…  The Northern Bobwhite!!

 

No kidding!  There’re 5 and 6-foot sturgeon swimming around in a Lake Cayuga tributary!!  (How big might they get in the lake proper?!!)

Indiana cat foils burgler…! 

On to this week’s entries from the Hudson River Almanac, up first rampaging teen beavers:

5/27 – New Hamburg, HRM 67.5: Our home, Rabbit Island (1.3 square acres), was under siege from beavers. They were thriving. Last week one came ashore and in less than 45 minutes cut down three trees and carted them off the island to parts unknown, all in broad daylight. They have stripped branches off several of our weeping Alaskan cedars and sampled the bark of hemlocks, a gold-thread cypress, and various arbor vitae around the periphery of the island. The biggest loss was a prize 30 year-old lace-leaf weeping Japanese red maple which they dispatched in a few minutes but then couldn’t get past the wire fence we had installed to keep beavers off the island. Our friend, “Trapper Steve” (a licensed trapping instructor) thinks these are adolescent beavers booted out of a local lodge. It is difficult to mount a defense when they could be coming ashore anywhere around the entire circumference of our island. – David Cullen

[Suggestions from Almanac readers would be helpful and most appreciated. Encircling the entire property with chicken wire is not an aesthetically appealing option. We have already put chicken wire around many of the most valuable trees but the island is beginning to look like a giant poultry barn. We currently have two radios with classical music playing at high volume 24/7 hoping to deter further incursions. Trapper Steve believes that short of catching them in a box trap, the best deterrent would be an electric fence. Dave Cullen]

And results of the Great Fish Count in NYC:

6/3 – Hudson River Estuary: During today’s third annual World Science Festival Great Fish Count, we sampled at 17 sites in the lower estuary and around New York City. Our totals were 1,009 fish of 26 species – the highest species total over three years, exceeding the 25 species (2,607 fish) at 15 sites last year. Our 2016 total individuals count – our highest over the three years – was swelled by the 2,000 bay anchovies taken in one seine haul at Lemon Creek Park on Staten Island. Five new species were added to our count list: conger eel (Valentino Pier, Brooklyn); common carp (in 4.0 ppt salinity at Englewood Boat Basin, New Jersey); oyster toadfish (Piers 25 and 84 in Hudson River Park, Manhattan); scup (Kaiser Park, Brooklyn); and cunner (Gantry Plaza State Park, Queens). That brought the total number of species caught over three years to 33.
The bay anchovy was again the most commonly caught fish, although we did not encounter any huge schools this year. The most widely distributed species were winter flounder, bay anchovy, and northern pipefish – each caught at seven sites. Atlantic silversides seemed low this year – only 41 at six sites compared to 270 at nine sites in 2016 and 202 at six sites in 2015.   – Steve Stanne

6/3 – Manhattan, HRM 13-11: As part of the Great Fish Count, we seined two locations in northern Manhattan. Our first stop was Inwood Park near Spuyten Duyvil where the salinity was 8.0 ppt (last year the salinity was 13.5 ppt). Our seine caught a colorful mix of young-of-the-year Atlantic menhaden, Atlantic silversides, bay anchovies, and mummichogs; some of the latter showed splendid male breeding colors. In the back of the net we also found eight quarter-sized winter flounder.

Our next stop was Fort Washington Park, just south of the George Washington Bridge. The heavy rain of the last week had lowered the salinity to 5.0 ppt, well below the 16.0 we found last year. We had hoped for a repeat of last year’s lined seahorse but settled for three (closely related) northern pipefish. There were also Atlantic menhaden, several winter and summer flounder, an impressive hogchoker (140 mm), white perch, and a handful of bay anchovies. We were puzzled by three beautifully marked spotted hake, each nearly six inches long, barely alive, that were floating in the water. We wondered what could have caused their condition.  – Margie Turrin, Brent Turrin, Allison Philpott

[Spotted hake (Urophycis regia) is one of eight members of the cod family (Gadidae) documented for the Hudson River estuary. For a checklist of all 226 species, e-mail trlake7@aol.com. Tom Lake.]

6/3 – Staten Island, New York City: Thirty-five participants helped us sample Lemon Creek on Staten Island for the Great Fish Count. The salinity on the beach was 21.0 ppt as we seined up a silver “confetti” of young-of-the-year bay anchovies and Atlantic menhaden. Additional treasures included striped killifish northern pipefish, winter flounder, windowpane flounder, and several types of Crustacea. In the tidal pond we caught blue crabs, mummichogs, four-spine sticklebacks, an American eel (elver), and a dramatic horseshoe crab. Sea water enters the tidal pond only at high tide, and the salinity was 23.0 ppt. –  Chris Bowser

In greenitude,

UGS

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Happy Tenth Annual World Science Festival Weekend, UESiders!!

Couldn’t be more apropos at this particular moment, yes?! 

And aren’t we lucky it’s happening in NYC?!!

So, count fish…  Study the heavens…  Attend one of multitudinous, fascinating talks, videos, workshops and events and more..  Check the full program out!!

OR…

You could have a pretty darned perfect Saturday right here on the UES!!  Think music, treats, a stellar river view and fun at the Pier 90 Project and with Esplanade Friends!!

Let the weekend and new week begin:

Saturday, June 3rd:  World Science Fair Great Fish Count

17 Waterway Sites in All 5 Boroughs,  Westchester & New Jersey, 9am-4pm

And we quote:  “From Lemon Creek in Staten Island to the shores of the Bronx River, New York’s waterways are teeming with life — and it’s up to you to find it! Led by top marine scientists and biologists in 17 sites, the Great Fish Count gives attendees of all ages the chance to strap on a pair of waders, cast a net, and discover the underwater world in their own backyard!”  Gotta be great!!  Free.  For more and to sign up

Saturday, June 3rd:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

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

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm

It’s Cooking with Kallos Saturday, people!!  And what will  our Council Member/chef be preparing from fresh, locally-grown/caught Greenmarket ingredients??  Find out and enjoy 11am-1pm!! 

Meanwhile, at their tables will be American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey, Hudson Valley Duck, Rising Sun Beef, Ole Mother Hubbert, Alewife, Samascott,  Hawthorne Valley,  Sikking Flowers and Gajeski  Farms!!

YES and the Master Knife Sharpener will be with us, too!!

Last week’s recycling totals –  56 lbs. batteries; 11 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 1 pair of eyeglasses; 12 compost bins and 40 bags of clothes

Just brilliant!! 

Saturday, June 3rd:  Pier 90 Project – Summer 2017!!

Pier 90, East River Esplanade at 90th Street, 12-3pm  

Another great day for New Yorkers of all ages by our wonderful river…  Enjoying the music  of the great John Putnam Trio…  Getting your young face painted (even if you’re over 21, don’t hold back!)…    Snacking on goodies from the great COFFEED…  And every bit of it free!!    (Rain date:   Sunday, June 4th)

Saturday, June 3rd:  Saturday Night Lights – Stargazing in Brooklyn Bridge Park

Brooklyn Bridge Park Pier 1, 2 Furman Street,  Brooklyn, 7-11pm

And we quote:  “Brooklyn Bridge Park lights up the night’s sky with high-tech interactive and stargazing activities! Step up to a telescope for an up-close look at the moon, Jupiter, and beyond. Back on Earth, join the one-and-only Bill Nye the Science Guy for a Q&A session and book signing. Then, take part in UP! Umbrella Project, a participatory experience created by Pilobolus in collaboration with MIT Distributed Robotics.   Armed with an LED-lighted umbrella, create your own exploding stars and a total eclipse, along with physicists and astronomers in a larger-than-life celebration of our universe. Astronauts Yvonne Cagle and Leland Melvin will also be on hand for space exploration and autograph signing. ”  Free.   And pretty darned awesome.   For more (scroll down)

Saturday, June 3rd:  Movies Under the Stars – “Mission Impossible:  Rogue Nation”

John Jay Park, 77th Street & Cherokee Place, 7:30pm

Unfold that sand chair or stretch out on a blanket  and watch Tom Cruise and team take on their most impossible mission yet:  Eradicating the Syndicate…  The Syndicate being an international rogue organization committed to destroying the IMF!   Free, of course!  Sponsored by Council Member Kallos, of course!!  To sign up… 

Every Wednesday Commencing June 8th:  Compost on the Go!! 

SE corner of Lexington & 96th Street, 7:15-10:00am

YES!!  UES compost collection expands yet again!!  This time making it easy to drop off your compost a stone’s throw from the Lex subway entrance whether you’re on your way to work, heading out to knock off morning errands or just wanting to empty your collection container/freezer more often!!   GrowNYC and DSNY, we thank you big time!!  We UESiders will fill those bins!!

Thursday, June 8th:  Climate Smart Communities Webinar

On Whatever Device Is Handy, 10:30am-12pm

Calling all New Yorkers concerned about future storms/flooding…  The NYS Department of Environmental Conservation has a webinar for us…  A webinar packed with preventative info and possible available funds!!   For the lowdown

Friday, June 9th:  Roller Skate Night at Isaacs Park!

Stanley Isaacs Playground Rink, 6-8pm

Free roller skate rental (or bring your own)!!  A live DJ!!   Open to all ages!!  Sponsored by Council Member Ben Kallos.  Did we mention it’s totally free??!!  For more….  To RSVP  (you need to)…

On the horizon:

Tuesday, June 13th:  Growing Food, Growing Healthy Community

Deepak HomeBase, ABC Home on the Mezzanine, 888 Broadway, 7-8:30pm

Discover how such food leaders Stephen Ritz, Tony Hillery, Robert Graham, and Diane Hatz are transforming eating in the Bronx, Harlem and beyond in NYC.  $25.  For more and tickets

Saturday, June 24th:  Care Captain Street Tree Stewardship

Meet at Frederick Douglas Circle, 110th Street and Central Park West, 10am-2pm

Calling all Tree People!!  Make a quantum leap in your tree wisdom in just 4 jam-packed hours strolling the edge of Central Park!!  Learn how to ID trees, assess their health issues and to properly care for them!  Then there’s a tree’s inner life…  How life changes for trees when they leave the forest and enter the urban streetscape!   Please bring water and shoes comfortable for walking. Attendees will receive a street tree care kit, so make sure you register!  

Saturday, June 24th:  Great Backyard Campout Day

Anywhere You Can Set Up a Grill, 12:00am-11:59pm

A park…  A campground…  Your backyard…  Your apartment terrace…  The idea’s for Americans to get themselves outdoors  and revel in it!!  Organized by the National Wildlife Federation and they’re hoping for at least 100,000 participants (sleeping out not required)!!    For more (there’re even prizes!)…  And New York State campgrounds… 

Sunday, June 25th:  92nd Street Greenmarket Re-Opens!! 

92nd Street at First Avenue, 9am-4pm

Fruit!  Vegs!  Baked goods!  Seafood!!  Honey!  Compost collection!!  Just 3 more weeks till 92nd Street returns!!

Miscellany:

Cheers for the NYC DEC for rejecting the (new and unimproved)  EPA’s decision the Hudson has been sufficiently cleansed of PCBs!!

And it’s soon commence replanting trees felled to contained the Asian Longhorned Beetle

Seems childhood allergies are significantly higher in the U.S. than Europe…  

But if you think quality PE is a good thing for NYC kids

Can clean water really not be a right in New York State…?

Incredible the energy and effectiveness of the GVHPS (Greenwich Village Historic Preservation Society) now taking on chain/big box stores now threatening to strip the East Village of its character…   

New great guides for exploring NYC

The right tool for the right job

America’s most misspelled words

Time for some animals:

Wonderful that 60 Liberian chimps used in NY Blood Center experiments are going to retire… 

The laughing gull

Top 15 cutest baby animals…  (Yup, baby skunks and raccoons got mixed up!)

And this week’s installment from the Hudson River Almanac:

5/22 – Manhattan, HRM 1: We checked our collection gear on a rainy morning in Hudson River Park at The River Project’s sampling station on the lighthouse tender Lilac at Pier 25. One of our crab pots held an oyster toadfish 230 millimeters {mm} long. The killifish traps contained several shore shrimp, mud crabs, amphipods, and mud dog whelk snails. – Melissa Rex, Toland Kister

An Oyster Toadfish

[Oyster toadfish, known colloquially as “oyster crackers,” are common along the Atlantic Coast and in New York Harbor. They set up shop on the bottom of the river and, with strong, sharp teeth, they crush and feed on shellfish such as crabs, oysters, and other bivalves. While they are most often found in salt or brackish water, they can tolerate low salinity and even freshwater for a short time. Tom Lake.] 

5/24 – Manhattan, HRM 1: We checked our collection gear this morning in Hudson River Park at The River Project’s sampling station on the lighthouse tender Lilac at Pier 25. On one of the killifish traps we found two lined seahorses (85 mm, 100 mm); one was hanging on to the outside of the trap, the other was clinging to the rope. We have also begun to see mud dog whelk snail eggs along the traps and caught our first comb jellies of the season.
– Elisa Caref, Melissa Rex, Megan Moroney

A Comb Jelly Fish

[Comb jellies (Ctenophora) look like jellyfish but do not sting. Like true jellyfish, they are translucent, gelatinous, fragile, and essentially planktonic, drifting at the whim of the wind and current. Peanut to walnut-sized, they often occur in swarms, and are common in warm, brackish estuarine shallows. Gently scoop one with a wet, cupped hand and place it in a small clear container to see the “combs” – eight rows of cilia which beat synchronously to propel the animal lazily through the water. There are two common species in the Hudson – Leidy’s comb jelly or sea walnut (Mnemiopsis leidyi) and Beroe’s comb jelly or pink slipper comb jelly (Beroe cucumis); the former bioluminesces. Tom Lake, Steve Stanne.]

5/26 – Manhattan, HRM 1: We checked our collection gear in mid-morning in Hudson River Park at The River Project’s sampling station on the lighthouse tender Lilac at Pier 25. On the rope of a killifish trap we found a lined seahorse (60 mm). The other traps had shore shrimp, amphipods, mud crabs, mud dog whelk snails, and oyster drill snails. – Megan Moroney, Melissa Rex

Mud Dog Whelk Snail

[The Atlantic oyster drill (Urosalpinx cinerea) is a small sea snail, a marine gastropod. The oyster drill preys on oysters by drilling though their shell to get at the animal inside. – Tom Lake]

An Oyster Drill Snail

An Oyster Drill Snail Plays Peek-A-Boo

We will be ultra green,

UGS

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Happy Birthday, New York Public Library and Ralph Waldo Emerson, UESiders!!

And happy, happy Memorial Day!!

Whether near or far…  Whatever the weather…  Wallow joyously in the long weekend!!

Then there’s the week ahead:

Saturday, May 27th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

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

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm

Whatever else we’re up to over the holiday, that the Greenmarket Great Regional Grains Project will be back at 82nd will make it just that much better!!   You are listening, aren’t you,  you bakers, brewers and pasta makers??  (And, really, do check out this particularly wonderful GrowNYC endeavor!) 

With us, too, will be American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey, Hudson Valley Duck, Rising Sun Beef, Ole Mother Hubbert, Alewife, Samascott,  Sikking Flowers and, Gajeski  Farms!!

Only two less than high notes:  (1) At the last moment, the Master Knife Sharpener was called away and…   (2) Given our crazy weather, Cherry Lane’s  tomatoes are just not ready for Prime Time at 82nd and likely needing another couple of weeks to move toward ripening…

In the meantime,  happily, Hawthorne Valley will still be with us!!  

(You have noted next Saturday, June 3rd, as Cooking with Kallos Day, yes?)

Last week’s recycling totals –  43 lbs. batteries; 14 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 3 pair of eyeglasses; 12 compost bins; 30 bags of clothes; 6870 lbs. paper!!

Yes!!  So good to be back in the 12 bin zone!! 

And then:

Thursday, June 1st:  Free Mammography Screening

78th Street between First & York, commencing at 9am

All insurances accepted with co-pays and deductibles waived.   Totally free for all uninsured women over 40 who haven’t had a mammogram in a year or more.  Appointments a must, so call 800-564-6868.  Funded by Cancer Program Services ofManhattan and Judges and Lawyers Breast Cancer Alert.  Hosted by Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright.  For questions and further details, contact AM Seawright’s office:  212-288-4607 or SeawrightR@nyassembly.gov.

Saturday, June 3rd:  World Science Fair Great Fish Count

17 Waterway Sites in All 5 Boroughs,  Westchester & New Jersey, 9am-4pm

And we quote:  “From Lemon Creek in Staten Island to the shores of the Bronx River, New York’s waterways are teeming with life — and it’s up to you to find it! Led by top marine scientists and biologists in 17 sites, the Great Fish Count gives attendees of all ages the chance to strap on a pair of waders, cast a net, and discover the underwater world in their own backyard!”  Gotta be great!!  Free.  For more and to sign up

Saturday, June 3rd:  Pier 90 Project – Summer 2017!!

Pier 90, East River Esplanade at 90th Street, 12-3pm  

Another great day for New Yorkers of all ages by our wonderful river…  Enjoying the music  of the great John Putnam Trio…  Getting your young face painted (even if you’re over 21, don’t hold back!)…    Snacking on goodies from the great COFFEED…  And every bit of it free!!    (Rain date:   Sunday, June 4th)

Sunday, June 11th:  Open Tree Data for All Workshop!

St, Mary’s Recreation Center, 450 St. Ann’s Avenue, The Bronx, 9am-3:30pm

Whether you were a Tree Counter or not, master the NYC Open Data Portal and learn how to mine the info collected by 2015’s Tree Census!  No question, this’s a unique opportunity that’ll will allow gardeners/tree people to explore, interact with and  better understand the trees and overall greenness of our city (so we can improve both)!!  For more and reserve a place (required)

Sunday, June 25th:  92nd Street Greenmarket Re-Opens!! 

92nd Street at First Avenue, 9am-4pm

Fruit!  Vegs!  Baked goods!  Seafood!!  Honey!  Compost collection!!  Less than a month now till 92nd Street returns!!

On to miscellany:

Eeek!  Norway’s Svalbard seed vault came close to flooding

Thank you,  NY Times for identifying the 4 best roller coasters accessible by public transport!

Of course, Atlas Obscura would compile a list of  The World’s Most Specific Museums

NYC Restaurant Grades explained…  (Really?  93% received an “A”?!!) 

Nope, NYC buildings weren’t always giant glass/brick pallet monuments to banality…  Witness the Anonymous Art Museum!!

Interesting research from  Netflix via Cynopsis:

Netflix doesn’t release a lot of viewership data, but when it does it can be pretty intriguing. According to a new analysis from the streaming giant, which took a look at customer viewing behavior in 22 countries over a period of six months, viewers’ content preferences vary depending on what time of day it is. For instance, viewers prefer comedy in the morning, dramas during midday, and thrillers during primetime. Late at night, it’s back to comedies. And documentary content has its window of popularity as well, seeing a 24% increase in viewing from midnight to 6 AM. To gather the data, Netflix measured data from about 77 million accounts.

And interesting Citibike insight, courtesy of Kayleigh Campbell and Candace Brakewood…

In the Action You Might Want To Take Department:

Like encouraging City Hall to better support our public libraries

As opposed to some members of our state legislation, should you think NYS would benefit from more rather than less wind power

Supporting a ban on child-brain-damaging insecticide chlorpyrifos… 

And in the Who Knew? Bailiwick (as related by “The Writer’s Almanac”):

When Clara Barton was only 10, her brother David fell off the roof of the family barn. At first, he seemed fine, but the next day he developed a headache and fever. The doctor diagnosed “too much blood” and prescribed the application of leeches to help draw out the extra blood. Clara took over as her brother’s nurse and spent two years at his bedside applying leeches (though David did not get any better until he tried an innovative “steam therapy” several years later).

As a girl, Clara was shy and had a stutter, and her worried mother asked a phrenologist (phrenologists, who were fairly common in the 1800s, examined the bumps on a person’s skull as a way to determine their personality traits) to help her. The phrenologist said that she was shy and retiring and that the solution to her problem was to become a schoolteacher. Barton did not want to teach but she began teaching in 1839 at the age of 18. She overcame her shyness, became a sought-after teacher, and believed in the value of her work. She once said, “I may sometimes be wiling to teach for nothing, but if paid at all, I shall never do a man’s work for less than a man’s pay.”

Several men proposed to Barton, but she remained single her whole life, at one point telling her nephew that on the whole she felt that she had been more useful to the world by being free from matrimonial ties.

In 1854, she gave up teaching and took a job in the United States Patent Office in Washington, D.C. She worked hard, got promoted, and within a year was making a salary equal to the men in the office (which angered the men). She left Washington for three years when the administration changed, but she returned in the early 1860s and resumed her job in the Patent Office. By 1861, war was breaking out, and when supporters of the Confederacy attacked Union soldiers in Washington, D.C., Clara helped nurse wounded soldiers in the same way she had nursed her brother.

During one of the first major engagements of the war, the Battle of Bull Run, the Union suffered a staggering defeat and as Clara read reports of the battle she realized that the Union Army had not seriously considered or provided for wounded soldiers. She began to ride along in ambulances, providing supplies and comfort to wounded soldiers on the frontlines.

After the war, she traveled to Geneva, Switzerland, where she learned about the International Red Cross and its mission to be a neutral organization that helped wounded soldiers. When Barton returned to the United States, she pressed for the creation of a national branch of the Red Cross. But many people thought there would never again be a war as monumental and devastating as the Civil War and didn’t see the need for the Red Cross. Barton finally convinced the Arthur administration that the Red Cross could be used in other crises.

The American Red Cross was officially incorporated on May 21st, 1881, with Barton as its president.

Clara Barton said, “I may be compelled to face danger, but never fear it, and while our soldiers can stand and fight, I can stand and feed and nurse them.”

And she said, “The door that nobody else will go in at, seems always to swing open widely for me.”

She also said, “Everybody’s business is nobody’s business, and nobody’s business is my business.”

Time for some animals:

As ever during May and June, be watchful for turtles crossing roads… 

May 27th marks the opening of  NYS’s  (Huh?  Say what?) muskelunge fishing season!

Surprise-surprise!!  Last week’s Sunday Times Magazine was all but entirely devoted to critters!!  Check out feline contributions to understanding the endocrine system!!

Then there’s The Great Virginia Cat Shaving Mystery

So-so NYC:  Birding by subway!!

Many and loud cheers for the 213 American cities that now require all animals for sale in pet stores be rescue animals!!  (Many, many in NJ; an embarrassing 5 in NYS.)

And from the Hudson River Almanac:

5/18 – Kowawese, HRM 59: The heat was intense on the beach (95 degrees Fahrenheit) so we had to limit each of the three groups of 20 third-grade students to a half-hour of seining in the sun. Our catch mirrored yesterday’s – American eel, tessellated darter, and spottail shiner – but there was a bonus: baby blue crabs 35-85 millimeters [mm] across. The students wanted to know why these small sandy-colored crabs were called “blue” crabs, so we explained the value of camouflage, and how these crabs, as they grew, periodically put on a new set of “clothes” (moulting). Our net also caught all manner of rocks and sticks, even an ancient piece of planking, probably part of an old wooden barge from the days when Kowawese was a commercial port. – Cristin Sauter, Tom Lake

Spottail Shiner

[Even though the spottail shiner (Notropis hudsonius) is found throughout the Great Lakes, it could be called the “Hudson River fish.” All known biological organisms on earth have a scientific name, usually Latin, Greek, or a combination of the two. Following the protocol for naming a fish, spottail shiners were described and named by De Witt Clinton in 1824, between his two terms as governor of New York State. Clinton provided a detailed physical description of the spottail shiner and delivered it to the forerunner of the International Committee for Zoological Nomenclature (founded in 1895). They determined that this was a new species and accepted his name Clupia hudsonius (trivial name hudsonius in honor of the Hudson River). After several iterations of the genus, New York State Ichthyologist J.R. Greeley settled on Notropis hudsonius (1935). Tom Lake.]

Green as can be on Memorial Day and beyond,

UGS

 

 

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Happy Fifth Earliest NYC Heat Wave on Record, UESiders!!

(And third 2017 Air Quality Alert Day!)

By luck, we spent 92 degree Thursday up at the NY Botanical Garden strolling along an allee of gorgeous peonies, another of 60-plus foot trees, a path bordering the pretty darned clean-looking Bronx River and it’s mini-waterfall  and taking in Dale Chihuly’s glass sculptures, unequaled wherever they’re sited, but in the context of an unequaled garden…

Get yourselves up to the Bronx, people!!

(We’ll be returning to view the Chihulys at night!! )

Meanwhile, prepare yourselves for the intense – in the best possible way – week ahead:

Friday, May 19th:  NYSkies Astronomy Seminar

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

Star master John Pasmino’s subject this time out:  Our Milky Way in the Sky and Space!!  Free and, as always, so illuminating!

Saturday, May 20th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

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

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm

For once, a Saturday without – knock-knock –  rain!!

And with us – as they were in spite of last week’s downpour – will be American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey, Hudson Valley Duck, Rising Sun Beef, Ole Mother Hubbert, Alewife, Samascott, Consider Bardwell, Sikking Flowers, Gajeski and Hawthorne Valley Farms!!

Same for our Master Knife Sharpener to be getting your cutlery  up to snuff…  For shredding like crazy…  And for bidding adieu to Consider Bardwell and Hawthorne Valley until they return to 82nd Street late fall…  (You’ll find Consider Bardwell at 92nd Street when it reopens on Sunday, June 25th!)

In the meantime at 82nd:

Saturday, May 27th we’ll be hosting  the Greenmarket Great Grains Project and, on June the 3rd, Cooking with Kallos !!

But to return to the soggy misery that was last Saturday.  In spite of drenching rain, you the wild and crazy folks who shop 82nd filled 10 – 10! – bins with compost!!

Last week’s recycling totals –     71 lbs. batteries; 17 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 1 pair of eyeglasses; 10 compost bins; 12 bags of clothes.  

Down right incredible!!

Saturday, May 20th:  Shred-A-Thon –  Pre-Memorial Day Edition

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

One night left to be sorting through all those decades-old tax forms at the back of your hall closet!!

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 those hardcovers to Goodwill or Housing Works.)

And we can’t say it enough…

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

Both the CM and AM will be us as we aim towards breaking another record for shredded poundage!!

Saturday, May 20th:  Citizen Tree Pruner Refresher Course!

Meet at 38th Street & 28th Avenue, Astoria, 10am-12pm

Calling all pruners!  And we quote, “Are you a longtime pruner who is feeling a bit rusty?  Maybe you are a newly certified pruner seeking some more hands-on practice in the field.  Perhaps you are just looking to meet your fellow Citizen Pruners.”  Whatever the reason, lucky you, there’s the Citizen Pruner Refresher Course, led by the great Sam Bishop, AKA Mr. NYC Trees!!  For more:   sam@treesny.org!    And to RSVP...

Sunday, May 21st:  It’s My Park Day Spring Plantathon Volunteer Day 

Meet at bottom of the East 60th Street ramp, 60th Street & York Avenue, 2-5pm  (If you run late, just proceed up and then down the ramp onto the Esplanade, proceed 50 feet north and past the dog run to the Green Park Garden…  No way, you’ll miss it!) 

They’ve got the milkweeds, cone flowers, native roses and grasses and more!  They’ll fit you out with gloves, trowel if you don’t have ’em, along with the gift of knowing you’ve had a hand in preparing the Green Park Gardeners’ beautiful, block-long native plant garden to give New Yorkers’ pleasure for months to come!! Just let them know you’re coming: greenparkgardenersnyc@gmail.com!   

Wednesday, May 24th:  Secret Lives Tour – Met Arms & Amory Tour

Metropolitan Museum, Fifth Avenue at 82nd Street, 2pm

Our Met boasts one of the most encyclopedic collections of arms and armor on the globe. Join the Historic Districts Council for a special behind-the-scenes look with Stephen Bluto, Department’s Collections Manager. Tour includes both the galleries and theConservation Lab, where Met Armorer Edward Hunter will explain the ins-and-outs of armor conservation. To quote the Historic Districts blurb:  “Don’t “shield” yourself from this unique opportunity!”  HDC friends and seniors:  $50.  General admission:  $75. For tickets

Wednesday, May 24th:  First Annual Upper East Side Garden Party

Mount Vernon Hotel Museum, 421 East 61st Street, 6-8pm

Calling all UES gardeners!!   Come meet folks who like you make our parks, Greenstreets, bicycle islands, Esplanade gardens and street tree beds bloom!! Yup, those who till UES earth and beautify it will be meeting, greeting and sharing all we’ve learned about making things grow in NYC!!   Sponsored by Assembly Member Seawright and Council Members Kallos and  Garodnick!  RSVP an absolute must and do include where you garden:  uppergreenside@gmail.com 

Breathe deeply, then:

Saturday, May 27th:  14th Annual Horseshoe Crab Festival

Meet at Jamaica Bay WIldlife Refuge, 9am

Then carpool  to nearby site to see the annual mating ritual of the ancient horseshoe crabs!! Other events during the day include children’s program and lectures on horseshoe crabs topics (bet there’re a lot of them!). For more info call (718) 474-0896; e-mail: don@littoralsociety.org.  Organized by NYC Audubon.  Free!

Thursday, June 1st:  Free Mammography Screening

78th Street between First & York, commencing at 9am

All insurances accepted with co-pays and deductibles waived.   Totally free for all uninsured women over 40 who haven’t had a mammogram in a year or more.  Appointments a must, so call 800-564-6868.  Funded by Cancer Program Services ofManhattan and Judges and Lawyers Breast Cancer Alert.  Hosted by Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright.  For questions and further details, contact AM Seawright’s office:  212-288-4607 or SeawrightR@nyassembly.gov.

Saturday, June 3rd:  World Science Fair Great Fish Count

17 Waterway Sites in All 5 Boroughs,  Westchester & New Jersey, 9am-4pm

And we quote:  “From Lemon Creek in Staten Island to the shores of the Bronx River, New York’s waterways are teeming with life — and it’s up to you to find it! Led by top marine scientists and biologists in 17 sites, the Great Fish Count gives attendees of all ages the chance to strap on a pair of waders, cast a net, and discover the underwater world in their own backyard!”  Gotta be great!!  Free.  For more and to sign up

Sunday, June 25th:  92nd Street Greenmarket Reopens!! 

92nd Street at First Avenue, 9am-4pm

Fruit! Vegs!  Baked goods!  Seafood!!  Honey!  Compost collection!!  Going to be great when 92nd Street returns!!

Hitting the miscellany trail:

Front  and center:  51 units of new, affordable senior housing are now available at 1918 First Avenue at 99th Street!!  (Thanks to reader Roger Hernandez for the tip!!) 

A third generation El Barrio resident, Roger (and others) then weigh in on our city’s on-going zoning debate… 

Meanwhile:

In the Why-Did-You-Bother/Hang-Your-Head-In-Mini-Shame Department:  Architects Hollwich Kushner “redesign”of classic NYC deco buildings

(This while The Times celebrates the enduring utility/livability/aestheics of the UES’s Cherokee Place…)

(Maxi-shame reserved for Stahl and its intention – defeated at every level of court to date – to demolish  the landmarked City & Suburban Homes/First Avenue Estates!)

Should you think we don’t need GMO trees

On the other hand:

Adirondack and Catskill campgrounds open today!!

NYS DEC’s  Becoming an Outdoors Woman  just announced a bunch of great new programs!! 

NYS’s also just launched it’s I-Bird initiative!!

smart (MIT-designed) garbage truck

One amazing new park a-building in central Moscow

The past, dismal present and future of shopping malls

Going way lighter:

Yes, back in his best days, Robert Redford once lived amongst us UESiders and his erswhile duplex is up for sale

New to us edible plant life:  Garlic mustard!

No way to improve on this title:  Driftwood Haiku on the Bronx Riviera

Bring on the animals:

It’s a week of winning titles:   “The Doctor Will See Your Iguana Now”

Amazing “Finding Your Furry Friends Online” took so long to evolve…  Great that it exists and works so well now!! 

And now for our Hudson River Almanac moment:

5/8 – Hyde Park, HRM 82: I spotted a songbird flying erratically around my house today before it gently crashed into a downspout. It seemed unhurt. I picked up the gorgeous magnolia warbler and it used my finger as a tree branch. It seemed to enjoy hanging with me for ten minutes before flying to my roof and then to the sky.   – Brenda Sramek

That Magnolia Warbler

[In the Hudson Valley, the magnolia warbler is seen mostly in migration. Being a bird of the northern forest, it can be found nesting in the Catskills, Taconics, and Adirondacks. For more information about this bird, visit the All About Birds website. Steve Stanne.]

5/8 – Manhattan, HRM 1: We checked our collection gear in late morning at The River Project’s sampling station on the lighthouse tender Lilac at Pier 25 in Hudson River Park. The killifish traps and crab pots held an American eel 400 millimeters [mm] long, four blackfish (185-285 mm), and a lined sea horse (90 mm).   – Melissa Rex, Elisa Caref, Toland Kister

a lined seahorse

5/11 – Manhattan: At midday in Inwood Hill Park, the air temperature was 60 degrees; spring seemed to be hesitating. Along the inlet of Spuyten Duyvil Creek, curly dock was fully grown and blooming and mugwort was also plentiful; the invasive species are quick and vigorous. In the woods, garlic mustard had now spread all the way down the Clove but pachysandra was showing new leaves and jewelweed was coming up. Up on the ridge, it looked more like spring. I saw a single flower of common cinquefoil and then several patches of wild geranium flowers. Here and there a single periwinkle flower remained among large numbers of cleavers and lots of porcelain berry. The smaller, non-native geranium called herb-robert, was also flowering and so was celandine. Flowers of yellow rocket (Barbarea vulgaris) were new to me here. False Solomon’s seal was budding and a little patch of Spanish bluebells was lovely. I was especially pleased to see several stems of lily-of-the-valley flowering; I had never seen that here before.  -Thomas Shoesmith

Mugwort!!

Every day, ever more green,

UGS

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Happy Mother’s Day, UESiders!!

It’ll Global Big Day (a collective effort aiming to break the number of birds seen worldwide in a single day for yet another year), too!!

And this is #Infrastructure Week!

(There’s a fish count day coming up in June…)

But now for the week ahead:

Saturday, May 13th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

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

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm

Can’t stop the big doins’ at the Greenmarket!!

You do recall that the great Greenmarket’s Grains Project’s returning to 82nd on Saturday, May 27th, yes?

Well, now add another round of Greenmarket Cooking with Kallos to your Saturday, June 3rd (11am-1pm ) calendar!!

 (Of course, the Council Member’ll be chopping and stirring at 92nd Street as well, likely early July!!)

And this week, at their tables will be American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey, Hudson Valley Duck, Rising Sun Beef, Ole Mother Hubbert, Alewife, Samascott, Consider Bardwell, Sikking Flowers, Gajeski and Hawthorne Valley Farms!!

Happy to say,  Master Knife Sharpener Barbara Hess to be with us and honing, too!!  

Manager G’s off this Saturday, but the great Andrei will be filling in! 

It’s the last 2 weeks for Consider Bardwell and Hawthorne Valley, so let’s have them leave us with their Greenmarket cupboards bare!  (Look for Consider Bardwell at the 92nd Street Greenmarket when it reopens on Sunday, June 24th!) 

BACK TO 82nd…

In just 3 more weeks, Cherry Lane back  returns!!

Last week’s recycling totals –     57 lbs. batteries; 23 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 2 pairs of eyeglasses; 12 compost bins; 32 bags of clothes.  

Great to be in the 12 bin zone!!

Sunday, May 14th:  The Pier 90 Project Returns (on its Rainday!!)

Pier 90, East River Esplanade at 90th Street, 12-3pm   

Predictions of still more rain moderate and improve as each day passes!!   So fingers crossed that, come Sunday, we’ll all be lolling about on the pier…  Soaking up sun and soothed by lapping water…  Enjoying the music  of the great Grupo Guataca)…  Snacking on goodies from the great COFFEED…  And every bit of it free!!   Stay tuned…

Tuesday, May 16th:  EsplanadeFriends Spring Benefit 2017

Bar Felice, 1591 First Avenue between 82nd & 83rd Streets, 6:30-8:30pm 

Can it really be Friends’ 4th Annual Benefit?  Indeed, it is and 2016 was one amazing year of achievement, front and center of which is the opening of Pier 90 for all New York’s enjoyment, even on those weekends when there’s no live music, free cookies and ice cream!!  Coming up:  More public art, more greenery, rebirth of the erstwhile Con Edison site and so much more!!  But first, the benefit with Bar Felice’s great eats and atmosphere, Friends’ wonderful supporters and the best darned roundup of raffle prizes ever!!  You do want to be an Esplanade Friend, too!!     

Saturday, May 20th Shred-A-Thon –  Pre-Memorial Day Edition

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

And, as ever, the drill:

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.)

Thanks to Council Members Kallos and Garodnick for their multiple years of generous Shred-A-Thon support and Assembly Member Seawright for sponsoring yet another shredding event!

Sunday, May 21st:  It’s My Park Day Spring Plantathon Volunteer Day 

Meet at bottom of the East 60th Street ramp, 60th Street & York Avenue, 2-5pm  (If you run late, just proceed up and then down the ramp, 50 feet north and past the dog run to the Green Park Garden…  No way, you’ll miss it!) 

Wield your trowel and hand rake alongside Green Park Gardeners, the people who’ve created the beautiful, block-long native plant garden in the East River Esplanade’s Andrew Haswell Green Park!  You bring your tools, gloves and gardening experience…  The Gardeners’ll supply the butterfly-friendly plants!   Just let them know you’re coming: greenparkgardenersnyc@gmail.com!   

Wednesday, May 24th:  First Annual Upper East Side Garden Party

Mount Vernon Hotel Museum, 421 East 61st Street, 6-8pm

Calling all UES gardeners!!   Come meet folks who like you make our parks, Greenstreets, bicycle islands, Esplanade gardens and street tree beds bloom!!  Yup, those who till UES earth and beautify it will be meeting, greeting and sharing all we’ve learned about making things grow in NYC!!   Sponsored by Assembly Member Seawright and Council Members Kallos and  Garodnick!  RSVP an absolute must and do include where you garden:  uppergreenside@gmail.com!  

Saturday, May 27th:  14th Annual Horseshoe Crab Festival

Meet at Jamaica Bay WIldlife Refuge, 9am

Then carpool  to nearby site to see the annual mating ritual of the ancient horseshoe crabs!! Other events during the day include children’s program and lectures on horseshoe crabs topics (bet there’re a lot of them!). For more info call (718) 474-0896; e-mail: don@littoralsociety.org.  Organized by NYC Audubon.  Free!

Suddenly, it’s June:

Thursday, June 1st:  Free Mammography Screening

78th Street between First & York, commencing at 9am

All insurances accepted with co-pays and deductibles waived.   Totally free for all uninsured women over 40 who haven’t had a mammogram in a year or more.  Appointments a must, so call 800-564-6868.  Funded by Cancer Program Services ofManhattan and Judges and Lawyers Breast Cancer Alert.  Hosted by Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright.  For questions and further details, contact AM Seawright’s office:  212-288-4607 or SeawrightR@nyassembly.gov.

Saturday, June 3rd:  World Science Fair Great Fish Count

17 Waterway Sites in All 5 Boroughs,  Westchester & New Jersey, 9am-4pm

And we quote:  “From Lemon Creek in Staten Island to the shores of the Bronx River, New York’s waterways are teeming with life — and it’s up to you to find it! Led by top marine scientists and biologists in 17 sites, the Great Fish Count gives attendees of all ages the chance to strap on a pair of waders, cast a net, and discover the underwater world in their own backyard!”  Gotta be great!!  Free.  For more and to sign up

Sunday, June 25th:  92nd Street Greenmarket Reopens!! 

92nd Street at First Avenue, 9am-4pm

Fruit! Vegs!  Baked goods!  Seafood!!  Honey!  Compost collection!!  Going to be great when 92nd Street returns!!

Let there be miscellany:

Say what?  Maryland’s set to become the U.S. leader in windpower?!

A promising new tool as powers-that-be look to fine-tune Vision Zero solutions… 

More new us:  The term “Pesticide Drift”

The good news:  U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California ruled that the EPA had unlawfully issued 59 pesticide regulations between 2007 and 2012 for a wide variety of agricultural, landscaping and ornamental uses.

And the bad and worse: Seeds coated with bee-killing neonicotinoid insecticides are now used on more than 150 million acres of U.S. corn, soybeans, cotton and other crops – totaling an area bigger than California and Florida combined.   Water contamination from ag run-off is virtually out of control.

Sorry to say the NYS Emerald Ash Borer quarantine area has been enlarged… 

On the upswing:

Wow!!  So, so much to enjoy in  the great NYState outdoors!!  (Including fishing for –  how did this name ever happen – crappie!)

No question, the yen to fish is on the rise in NYC!!  (Seen the anglers lining our Esplanade!!)

Attention, fishing enthusiasts:  There’re new recreational flounder fishing regs!

Trust the Master Knife Sharpener to bring a farmer appearing on “Shark Tank” to our attention!

And the winners of the “I Voted” sticker design contest are…  

Seen the new navy-blue M15 local bus?

The Waldorf Astoria past, present and in the not-so-distant future

In the activist mode:

Should you support net neutrality… 

Let there be feathers, pollinating and furriness:

NYState’s celebrating its tenth anniversary of juvenile eel monitoring!!

You – yes, YOU – can participate in Monarch (butterfly) Watch’s Citizen Science Project!!

Whoa!  Interested if there’ve been any rat inspections in your hood…? 

How to make your own protective paw wax for dog and kitty

A baby wombat grows up  

And from the Hudson River Almanac:

5/4 – Stuyvesant, HRM 127: I got a nice photo today of an adult bald eagle in flight. When I looked at the image, I noticed that the bird had a blue band on its left leg, likely a New York State DEC band.  –  Kaare Christian

Bald Eagle S72

[After viewing Kaare’s photograph, I concluded that the blue band had alpha-numeric S72. This was a female, fledged in 2007 from bald eagle nest NY106 in Allegheny County, about 280 miles west of Stuyvesant, in Columbia County. – Pete Nye.]

5/5 – Newcomb: Some spring wildflowers were in bloom: trout lily, sessile-leaved bellwort, red trillium, toothwort, and Viola spp. were in abundance. Witch-hobble (Viburnum lantanoides) and shadbush (Amelanchier spp.) were also in bloom. Newly arrived migrant songbirds, seen and heard in the woods, included yellow-rumped, black-throated green, and magnolia warblers, as well as American redstart and a bonus red-breasted grosbeak. Unfortunately, the black flies were also starting to send out their scouts. – Charlotte Demers

Living in green,

UGS

 

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Happy Cinco de Mayo,  International Tuba Day and (One Day After) Star Wars Day, UESiders!!

And Jimmy Fallon managed to marry the three

Speaking of three…  Three inches of rain in Central Park today!!

Shadbush in bloom

On to the week ahead:

Saturday, May 6th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

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

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm

It’s CHEESE DAY at 82nd Street!

To quote Uber Market Manager Margaret:  “Favorite cheese purveyors Valley Shepherd, Consider Bardwell and Hawthorne Valley will all be at market and all our favorite dairy animals will be represented:  Cow (Hawthorne)… Goat (Consider Bardwell)…   Sheep ( Valley Shepherd)!!”

Wow, yes?!

PLUS:

Margaret says, “Asparagus season is in full swing and there will probably still be some ramps!”

Meanwhile…

Also with us will be American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey, Hudson Valley Duck, Rising Sun Beef, Ole Mother Hubbert, Alewife, Samascott, Sikking and Gajeski Farms!!

YES, AND:

Look for Master Knife Sharpener Barbara Hess to be at her table, too!!  

AND REMEMBER:

Come Saturday, May 27th, the wonderful Greenmarket Grains Project will be paying our market another visit!!

Last two weeks’ recycling totals –   Week of April 22nd:  54 lbs. batteries; 15 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 11 compost bins; 25 bags of clothes.   Week of April 29th:  66 lbs. batteries; 17 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 2 pairs glasses; 12 compost bins; 35 bags of clothes.

Wow, again!!

Saturday, May 6th:  The Pier 90 Project Returns!

Pier 90, East River Esplanade at 90th Street, 12-3pm   (rain date:  Sunday, May 14th) 

More live music (this time out, Pier 90 fave Grupo Guataca)…  Food treats galore from the great COFFEED…   A marvelous river view…   The company of other wonderful UESiders!!  Doesn’t get any better and it’s entirely free, folks!!

Saturday, May 6th:  Identification Day!

Museum of Natural History, Theodore Roosevelt Memorial Hall, Central Park West at 77th Street, 12-4pm

Think “Antiques Roadshow” for that odd bone you found on the beach…    The rock that sure looks like a fossil… Those arrowheads your grandfather left you…  No dollar amounts involved, but the experts sure do weigh in, we wind up with knowledge and maybe natural treasures!!  Fun even if just checking out what others have brought!! Free.

Sunday, May 7th:  Spring Fling at East Side Elementary/PS 267!

East 63rd Street between Second and Third, 11am-3pm

Join PS 267 families, friends and neighbors for a Sunday full of fun for all ages!!  Fun as in carnival rides…  Games… Arts & crafts…  And good eats!!  All proceeds benefit the PS 267 PTA and the programs it supports.  Free admission. Games, rides and food start at just $1! 

Tuesday, May 9th & Every Tuesday till Fall:  East River Rowing with the East River Crew

96th Street at the East River Esplanade, 4:30pm to dusk (Rain cancels till the following Tuesday.)

Row, learn to row or just enjoy a fantastic late afternoon/evening on the water!  Learn about the natural life of our marvelous river/estuary!  Bring a hat, layers of clothing appropriate to the weather that day and sun screen!  No question, this is one of the UES’s Top Ten Loveliest Experiences!  Free!  For more and to print the waiver that’s a must...    

Saturday, May 20th:  Shred-A-Thon –  Pre-Memorial Day Edition

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

Coming up fast but 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, thanks to Council Members Kallos and Garodnick for their multiple years of generous Shred-A-Thon support and Assembly Member Seawright for sponsoring yet another shredding event!

Saturday, May 20th:  “Modern” Times – An Upper East Side Walking Tour

Meeting place info  provided with registration, 2pm

Architectural historian Matthew Postal enlightens on the premier UES examples of mid-century architecture, from buildings by Philip Johnson to Paul Rudolph to Edward Durrell Stone and more!  Organized by the Friends of the Upper East Side Historic Districts.  Members, $10.  Non-members, $20.  To register (scroll down)…

On the horizon:

Sunday, May 21st:  It’s My Park Day Spring Plantathon Volunteer Day 

Meet at bottom of the East 60th Street ramp, 60th Street & York Avenue, 2-5pm  (If you run late, just proceed up and then down the ramp, 50 feet north and past the dog run to the Green Park Garden…  No way, you’ll miss it!) 

Wield your trowel and hand rake alongside Green Park Gardeners, the people who’ve created the beautiful, block-long native plant garden in the East River Esplanade’s Andrew Haswell Green Park!  You bring your tools, gloves and gardening experience…  The Gardeners’ll supply the butterfly-friendly plants!   Just let them know you’re coming: greenparkgardenersnyc@gmail.com!   

Wednesday, May 24th:  First Annual Upper East Side Garden Party

Mount Vernon Hotel Museum, 421 East 61st Street, 6-8pm

Calling all UES gardeners!!   Come meet folks who like you make our parks, Greenstreets, bicycle islands, Esplanade gardens and street tree beds bloom!!  Yup, those who till UES earth and beautify it will be meeting, greeting and sharing all we’ve learned about making things grow in NYC!!   Sponsored by Assembly Member Seawright and Council Members Kallos and  Garodnick!  RSVP an absolute must and do include where you garden:  uppergreenside@gmail.com 

June already:

Thursday, June 1st:  Free Mammography Screening

78th Street between First & York, commencing at 9am

All insurances accepted with co-pays and deductibles waived.   Totally free for all uninsured women over 40 who haven’t had a mammogram in a year or more.  Appointments a must, so call 800-564-6868.  Funded by Cancer Program Services ofManhattan and Judges and Lawyers Breast Cancer Alert.  Hosted by Assembly Member Rebecca Seawright.  For questions and further details, contact AM Seawright’s office:  212-288-4607 or SeawrightR@nyassembly.gov.

Saturday, June 10:  Walk and Draw – An Artist’s Tour of Greenwich Village

Meeting site provided with reservation, 11am-1pm

Artist Nick Golebiewski leads the hunt for charming West Village details to sketch, providing along the way, sketching tips and tricks of the sketching trade!  Believe it or not, no artistic ability to thoroughly enjoy!  Pens and pocket sketchbooks provided!  And the Tour itself is free!!  For more and to register (scroll down)…

Miniscule miscellaneousness this week:

Hallelujah!  A Cornell scientist’s developed a polymer that’ll allow vastly more of the two most prevalent plastics (PE and PP) to be recycled together!!

Moneys for sustainable agriculture programs have, so far, survived the three continuing resolutions that’ve kept the 2017 Congressional budget from crash-and-burn…

However:

The NYC Landmarks Commission strikes again…  (Scroll down to the Case Study!) 

On the DL:

The NYS DEC’s temporarily closed down shellfish harvesting areas in Southampton and Southold, Long Island! 

Back on bright:

Meanwhile, the DEC and NYS Office of Parks have  just announced their First Time Camper Program…  Instructing individuals and families who’ve never camped how!! 

Learn the Art of Composting from a bunch of our UES neighbors who really know how:  The Green Park Gardeners NYC.  Just check out their gorgeous garden on the Esplanade at 62nd or online…  Then email  greenparkgardenersnyc@gmail.com!

In search of America’s surviving drive-in theaters

On the animal trail:

NYS has a new channel catfish record…  As in more than 39 pounds!!  (Congrats fisherman Eric Scordo!)

German police adopt…  A hamster!!

The Great Wild Hogs of Texas Debate

And from the Hudson River Diary:

4/22 – Tivoli North Bay: This was the March for Science weekend across the nation in concert with Earth Day. Our Bard College students decided to display their own variation on the theme by displaying banners from our canoes reading “Marsh for Science.”

We explored the tidemarsh at Tivoli North Bay, discussing topics from Phragmites function to sea level rise modeling. We used the high tide to explore some tight channels behind a beaver dam built within the marsh. The trails were a treasure trove of flowers, including trillium and trout lily.  – Chris Bowser, Jim Herrington, Bard College Environmental & Urban Studies students

4/26 – Manhattan: In late afternoon we checked our collection gear at The River Project’s sampling station on the lighthouse tender Lilac at Pier 25 and we found fish! One of our crab pots finally caught a lined sea horse 60 millimeters [mm] long that was hanging onto the edge of the wire pot with its prehensile tail. The killifish traps caught 100 shore shrimp, five isopods, 14 mud crabs, a surf clam, two isopods, and four mud dog whelk snails.
– Jacob Tuszynski, Hadassah Brenner, Jacqueline Wu 

4/28 – Manhattan, HRM 1: In late morning we checked our collection gear at The River Project’s sampling station on the lighthouse tender Lilac at Pier 25. More fish! A crab pot caught an adult white perch (230 mm). Our killifish traps caught a lined sea horse (120 mm) and a blackfish (65 mm).   – Jacob Tuszynski, Jessica Lambert, Jacqueline Wu

The Blackfish

[Blackfish is a colloquial common name for tautog (Tautoga onitis), a rather common, bottom-dwelling fish of New York Harbor. Their colloquial name, blackfish, refers to the adults as they attain a deep, coal black color, but juveniles like this one are often greenish. Among their favorite foods are shellfish that they find in abundance in near-shore rocky areas. In the spirit of “you are what you eat,” blackfish, perhaps owing to their shellfish diet, are one of the most sought after food fishes. –  Tom Lake.]

4/20 – Putnam County:

Spring
The sky is blue,
The bees are buzzing,
The wind is blowing,
And the trees are rattling.
The flowers are blooming,
Bunnies are hopping,
And the birds are chirping.
The kids are playing, 
The dogs are barking,
And spring is wonderful.
      – Briana Soto, 3rd Grade, Lakeview Elementary, Mahopac

Forever green,

UGS

 

 

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