Happy World Turtle Day, UESiders!!

Strange and wonderful critters deserving of our respect and caring…  Especially in spring when they’re doing crazy stuff – like crossing roads –  in search of other, eligible turtles and/or nest/lay eggs!!   ( Therefore, turtle crossings!!)  (And check out what NYC DEC’s doing – including tech – to help our threatened terrapins!!) 

This’s also National Tire Safety Week…  With summer driving that commences with Memorial Day…  UESiders with cars?  Get those tires checked!! 

Meanwhile…  How about this for a verge of summer thought:  A 12-month study of 2,600 children shows regular exposure to natural vegetation and the outdoors  improves a child’s cognitive development.  

We are not surprised, are we?

thymus-serpyllum

thymus-serpyllum

So much happening this holiday weekend and beyond:

Saturday, May 26th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

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

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm

At their tables will be American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey,  Sikking Flowers, Samascott, Rising Sun Beef, Old Mother Hubbert,  Gajeski,  Ale Wife, Hawthorne and Nolasco Farms!!

Happy to say, the Master Knife Sharpener will be there and honing like crazy, too!! 

Then there’s this from Market Manager G:  “It may be a long weekend and the last one in May, but don’t forget to pickup your favorite spring things from our great 82nd Street Market!!  Weather permitting, we will be grilling up something green and extra scrumptious…  (Let your imagination run as to just what the scrumptiousness might be!)  And come say farewell to Nolasco until the winter and get prepared for the long-awaited return of our favorite South Jersey farmer, Lou from Cherry Lane. He’ll be back next weekend!”

Recycling totals 5/19:   71 lbs batteries;  14 lbs cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges;  11 1/4 compost bins; 40 bags of clothes      

Way to go, people!!  And on a ridiculously soggy day!!

Sunday, May 27th:  Green Park GardenersNYC Spring Volunteer Day!!

Andrew Haswell Green Park, East River Esplanade at 60th Street, bottom of the ramp, 2-5pm

So much for the rain that never came and last week’s cancellation.  The GPG’s will be out and bringing beauty to our Esplanade.  So come along…  Dig holes, plant, braid daffodils, mark and mulch paths and plenty more, plus learning from those who know!!   BYO gloves and trowels…  Clippers and shovels, too, if you have ’em…  And let the GPG know you’re coming so they can plan:  greenparkgardenersnyc@gmail.com!

Sunday, May 27th:  Victorian Gardens Opening

Wollman Rink, Central Park

Eighteen rides, games and attractions, all totally family friendly!!   For attractions, ticket prices, hours, directions and more

Tuesday, May 29th to Monday, June 4th:  11th Annual World Science Festival 

Venues throughout NYC 

An amazing array of talks/lectures and hand-on experiences for folks of all ages and science proficiency ranging from robotics to a fish count in NYC’s waters!!  Really, not to be missed!!  For details (and are there plenty) and tickets…  (And then there’re the programs designed just for kids…)

Wednesday, May 30th:  Proving the Market for Energy Retrofits Live Stream

Under Your Own Roof, 7pm

So how’re we New Yorkers going to achieve our ambitious – but achievable- 80% energy reduction by 2050…?   Just click here next Wednesday at 7

Thursday, May 31st to Friday, June 22nd  Alfons Mucha – Shaping the Czech Identity Exhibition

Czech Center, 321 East 73rd Street

Even if the name’s not familiar, you ‘ll likely be familiar with the brilliant images created by this art nouveau greats.  But the Czech patriot also produced gorgeous banknotes, stamps, posters and a series of epic paintings celebrating the land of birth.    On physical display at Center or via slide show presentation.  Free  For more… 

Holy crow!  It’s June:

Saturday, June 2nd:  Celebrate at the Alice Aycock Pavilion

East River Esplanade at 60th Street, 1-4pm

Primo long weekend fun with great music (and totally dance-able music), kid activities, ice cream treats and the company of plenty of our great New York neighbors from the UES and beyond!!  Then there’s that wonderful, soothing river view…  Free!!  Organized by Esplanade Friends!!  Spread the word!!

Saturday, June 9th:  The Great Randall’s Island Treasure Hunt  

Location to be announced, 10am-2pm

Join Alliance guides for an adventure unlocking Island secrets, searching for treasure and exploring the Park!  Plus…  Learn how to use map and compass while navigating a fun course…  Check out the Alliance’s Gallery of Maps…  The larger-than-life musical puppet show…  The ton of prizes, too!!  Free.  Just right for ages 5 and above.  For more (and there’s plenty)

Tuesday, June 19th:  New York Solar & Storage Summit

Gerald W. Lynch Theater, John Jay College, 524 West 59th Street, 8am-6pm

Be a part of planting solar’s flag (and our ability to store that energy) ever further!!  There’ll be a host of energy, utility and government people there and they need our eyes on them and our prodding!!   $25-$50.   For more and to register

Saturday, June 23rd:  Paddle the Never Sink Reservoir

Meeting place and time provided with ticket purchase… 

And we quote, “Come paddle on the Neversink Reservoir with NYC H2O! The Neversink Reservoir is the highest in elevation in NYC’s water system with it’s spillway at 1,440 feet in elevation…!”  Organized by the great NYC H2O.   Van transportation from the Village.  Both kayaks and canoes available.   $25-$100. And you must register (it’s free) with the NYS DEP for watershed access  For tickets and more…

triantha-glutinosa-1

triantha-glutinosa

Bring on the miscellany:

For the first time in a decade, NYC’s not America’s fastest growing city…  What?!! But there’re still more of us in the 5 boroughs than anywhere in the US!!  (Check out the stats…) 

Last winter’s weather cost NYC what…??

That giant building planned for First and 79th?  Maybe it’ll be even bigger

A brief detour into the activist zone:

Eeek!!  No glory for McDonald’s shareholders who just voted down a plastic straw ban!!

Think Amazon should steer clear of selling GMO apples?

Or that the mayor should appoint an actual preservationist to head up Landmarks Preservation?   (Same for the Council!!)

Tech Proficients:  A solar bill working its way through the NY Assembly could use your help with a phone call and a tweet

If you think Kroger – America’s biggest supermarket chain – should stop selling food grown with bee-killing pesticides

BPA’s still coating so many of our receipts

The headline calls out Verizon for energy inefficiency, but none of the bigtime carriers is exactly stellar… 

On the upswing:

How about this for a lovely take on gardening, patience and buttterflies…  (Thanks to  reader Shwetha Shetty for the tip!)

Good on The Times for covering the Oakland, CA program that puts prison/post-prison people into gardens where very many heal…  A program pioneered by the great James Jiler (then of the Horticultural Society of New York) on Rikers Island…  Where some of the vegetable gardens are edged with extra Belgian blocks from UES tree beds !!  (Check out James’ TedX Talk…) 

Our city’s offering a ton of FREE summer sports programs for young ‘uns ages 6-17

Harry and Meghan’s  green, emissionless honeymoon car

Boat safety compliance inspections…  A record setting crappie catch…  Illegal turkey hunters…  Lots on NYState Conservation Officers’ hands of late…

NYS  likes its firewood (and firewood regulations) local, too… (aimed at keeping invasive tree-killers like long-horned beetles contained)…

Free tickets to NYC summer concerts… 

As for the feathered, finned, scaled and furry:

The kestrel nest cam

The osprey nest cam (recently visited by an owl!)…

Vocalizing fish

Our deer and moose are threatened by a chronic wasting disease

The virtues of bees

Five facts about wolves

Any number of great Nature docs on PBS this week, but “The World’s Most Wanted Animal” (i.e. the pangolin) is a total standout…

As ever, from the great Hudson River Alamanac:

5/7 – Staten Island: We took a quick walk on the beach this evening, overlooking the Lower Bay of New York Harbor, and came across a nesting killdeer. The female picked a tough spot for the nest right next to the trail that leads to the beach. She was so close to the trail that she immediately went into her “injured” display to distract us. Hopefully, her eggs will hatch soon and she and her brood will be on their way.   – Sean Gannon

Kildeer

A Killdeer

5/10 – Bronx, New York City: The lilacs at the Bronx Botanical Garden were starting to bloom. The Cherry Esplanade was glorious, as were the crabapples in the Osborne Garden.  In the Native Flora garden, some oaks and pitch pines were flowering. The moss pink (Phlox subulata) was stunning and the wild geranium and columbine were suddenly wonderful. In the woodlands, thanks to heart-leaved groundsel (Packera aurea), the beds were paved with gold.   – Thomas Shoesmith

groundselGroundsel

[Lilacs (Syringa sp.) are a part of Hudson River lore. When commercial shad fishermen plied their gill nets on the Hudson, they noticed that the shad migration upriver from the sea came in a measured progression. Beginning in early April, the ratio of male or buck shad, to female or roe shad, was 2:1. By late April into early May, the ratio shifted to 1:1. By mid-May, the lilacs were in bloom and it again changed to 2:1 roe shad. This would be the last of the run, the season was ending, and the big roe shad were dubbed “lilac shad.” – Tom Lake]

With every greenness,

UGS

 

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Happy Infrastructure Week, UESiders!!

We know…  We know…  But let’s look forward to the time we have some worthy of the name and our city…  And may it come soon…  And at that happy time, may the subway part of that great new infrastructre be as beautiful and CLEAN as (all but one of) these!!

Meanwhile, who knew that Dell’s manufacturing its tech with ocean-bound, recycled plastic?!  (“Ocean bound” defined as plastic collected from beaches, waterways and coastal areas!!)  (Other companies are getting onboard, too!!)

Wonderful, too, that rubble from the old Tappan Zee Bridge will be deployed to revive NYState’s Artificial Reef Program in the Long Island Sound, Great South Bay and  Atlantic Ocean!! 

Meanwhile, no question but we (as in UGS) gave International Compost Week short shrift…  Especially since reader Ellen Diamond  had sent along this lovely essay by her cousin Judy Eron on –  and don’t we know it! – the joys of compost/ composting!!  (Scroll down to page 24!) 

National Wildflower Week (the first full week in May) slipped by us, too… 

But today’s NYS Green Commute and Fishing Heritage Day!!

Then there’s the jam-packed week ahead:

Saturday, May 19th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

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

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm

With us will be American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey,  Sikking Flowers, Samascott, Rising Sun Beef, Old Mother Hubbert,  Gajeski,  Ale Wife, Hawthorne and Nolasco Farms!!

The Master Knife Sharpener will be at her table, too!! 

Recycling totals 5/5:   65 lbs batteries;  21 lbs cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 6 pairs of eye glasses; 12 compost bins; 35 bags of clothes       5/12:   77 lbs batteries; 17 lbs cords, corks cellphones and cartridges;  11 compost bins; 41 bags of clothes.

Brilliant, folks!!

Saturday, May 19th:  Plumb Beach Cleanup!

Plumb Beach, Gateway National Recreation Area, Brooklyn, 10am-2pm

The annual spring cleaning of this extraordinarily rich and unique marine environment.  Naturalists Clay and Seth Wollney’ll  also – once the cleanup’s done – lead volunteers in a seining experience!!  Bus transportation from Union Square and lunch provided!  Co-sponsored by the great NYC H2O, the National Park Service and the NY City Council!  For more and to rsvp… 

Saturday & Sunday, May 19th & 20th:  Annual Children’s Festival Celebrating imagiNations

National Museum of the American Indian, 1 Bowling Green, 11am-5pm

Learn how to kayak Eskimo-style…  Rope-weaving that made those incredible Inca bridges possible…   Pow-wow sweat dancing…  Mayan math…  Native North and South American culture at their most interesting and fun and for the young!!  Free.  

 

Saturday, May 19th:  Georgia O’Keeffe – Visions of Hawai’i Show Opens

New York Botanical Garden, 2900 Southern Boulevard, The Bronx

O’Keeffe’s gorgeous paintings…  The beautiful landscapes and plants that provided the her inspiration…  An opening weekend complete with hula, lei making, ukelele playing and plenty more!!   Adults, $15.  Seniors and students, $7.  Children 2-12, $4.  Members and children under 2, free!  For more and tickets… 

Sunday, May 20th:  DSNY Spring Safe Disposal Event

120th Street between Broadway & Amsterdam Avenues, 10am-4pm

Bring on those mouldering cans of transmission fluid and shellac, unwanted medicines and cosmetics, pesticides, electronics and more.  For the complete list, how recyclables should be safely packaged and how to get to the event

Sunday, May 20th:  High Bridge Walking Tour

Meet at the High Bridge, 2301 Amsterdam Avenue at 172nd Street, 12pm

Our city’s oldest bridge (think 1848) has been through plenty in its 180 years, including signature NYC neglect and vandalism.  But thanks to the 2012-2015 renovation, its once again a public pleasure, engineering marvel and NYC icon!!  Renovation project manager Bryan Diffley leads yet another great NYC H2O outing!!  $30.  For tickets and more

Sunday, May 20th:  Green Park GardenersNYC Spring Volunteer Day!

POSTPONED DUE TO RAIN!!  RESET FOR MAY 27th!!

Andrew Haswell Green Park, East River Esplanade at 60th Street, bottom of the ramp, 2-5pm

Dig holes, plant, braid daffodils, mark and mulch paths and plenty more, plus  learning from those who know!! Yes, come help prepare the UESide’s beautiful native plant garden for its summer glory!!   BYO gloves and trowels…  Clippers and shovels, too, if you have ’em…  And do let the GPG know you’re coming so they can plan:  greenparkgardenersnyc@gmail.com!

Tuesday, May 22nd;  Thursday, May 24th, Tuesday, May 29th, Thursday, May 31st:  Panorama Europe 2018 Film Festival

Rooftop, Czech Center New York, 321 East 73rd, 7pm 

With an exceedingly fine line-up of dramas and docs!!  And watching films way up high and under the stars, all the while sipping cocktails (yup, there’s a bar!) on balmy late spring evenings…  Yes!!   Films are free but you should RSVP

 

Tuesday, May 29th to Monday, June 4th:  11th Annual World Science Festival 

Venues throughout NYC 

An amazing array of talks/lectures and hand-on experiences for folks of all ages and science proficiency ranging from robotics to a fish count in NYC’s waters!!  Really, not to be missed!!  For details (and are there plenty) and tickets…  (And then there’re the programs designed just for kids…)

Another month begins:

Saturday, June 2nd:  Celebrate at the Alice Aycock Pavilion

The East River Esplanade at 60th Street 1-4pm 

A second fabulous afternoon under Alice Aycock’s marvelous sculpture, alongside our own East River!!  Live music, fun activities for the kids, delicious Meltbakery ice cream sandwiches and plenty more…  Yet another great Esplanade Friends event!!  (But rain cancels as it did last Saturday…) 

Sunday, June 3rd:  Grand Acquisitors – A Walking Tour

Meeting location provided with registration/ticket purchase, 10:30am

Walk the blocks and know the gorgeous UES buildings where many of America’s – and the world’s – foremost art collectors resided and enjoyed their masterpieces!!  Organized by Friends of the Upper East Side Historic Districts and led by architectural historian Matt Postal!  Members, $10.  Non-members, $20.    

Saturday, June 9th:  Big Apple Knitting Guild’s Share the Talent Meeting

NY Society for Ethical Culture, 2 West 64th, 1-4pm

Learn the techniques that distinguish the okay knitter from one who’s great from the amazingly skilled women – yes, women – of the BAKG!!  There’re a ton of workshops to choose from…   But you do need to sign up!  Free.

The week’s miscellany, with a life-saving opportunity up first:

As in the FDNY’ll be offering free CPR training the rest of 2018!! 

Then for a few issues of note:

As in, should you believe that clean water and air ought to be basic NYState resident rights… 

Or that you oppose offshore drilling along our East Coast

Or think America’s groundwater protections should remain strong

Or that regulations prohibiting use of lead bullets in National Wildlife Refuges should be reinstated

NYC’s far from alone in its housing shortage and expense and up-tick in homelessness…  We’ve got a host of likely (San Francisco) and unlikely (Boise, ID!) places for company…  (For The Times’ perspective on the subject…)

Seems that yet another – and far from “affordable” – highrise’ll be going up on the UES...  

(But NYC’s cheapest apartment was…)

The latest on Arctic ice

U. S. export of scrap (plastic, paper and more) to China continues down a rocky road… 

Lighter and brighter:

Meanwhile, Chinese scientists have devised a fire-detecting wallpaper that sets off alarms!!

Don’t we all love rich, nutrient-laden, chemical-free soil?  But how great that it might be on the front lines of reducing the world’s CO2 problem… 

(Meanwhile, of course, Elon Musk’ll be doing something great with dirt excavated from tunnels for his subterranean railroad…)

Three cheers for California’s legislating solar for all new homes by 2020!!  

Why are American barns red…?

What did NYS’s Conservation Officers deal with this week…?

How to pack for that camping trip sustainably!!

America’s best food trucks…  (Five of NYC’s made the cut!)

So why does the DEC want us walking through mud and water when we’re on Adirondack trails…?

Driving north in NYState?  Here’re Edible NY’s eaterie recommendations

Thirteen NYC sidewalk art (or art-ish) installations

An arrest for making moonshine in NYC…?

Let’s have some animals:

beautiful and once near-extinct Kirtland’s Warbler was spotted in Central Park last week!!

And there’re baby hawks in a nest in the West Village with a baby hawk cam

Still our state’s  two most endangered critters are

Meanwhile, the DEC’s asking  us to keep eyes peeled for the beautiful but invasive/destructive spotted lanternfly (they eat tree leaves) and report sightings

lantern fly

A Spotted Lanternfly

(Non-radioative) Chernobyl puppies are headed our way for adoption

So, what’s the speed of a peregrine falcon when it’s diving for prey?  (Click for your answer and plenty more fun critter lore…)

What would a week be without a few words from the great Hudson River Almanac:

4/28 – Manhattan: Eighteen enthusiastic high school students from across NYC’s five boroughs gathered at Randall’s Island for training for the World Science Festival’s 4th annual Great Fish Count on June 2. We sampled the Harlem River with our seine and had to make do with a meager but interesting catch, including two Atlantic silversides, a small striped bass, and several handfuls of shrimp. But the highlight was a dozen palm-sized and larger lion’s mane jellyfish (Cyanea capillata). We measured the Harlem River at 10.0 parts-per-thousand (ppt) salinity, a little less than 10% seawater. –  Margie Turrin, Laurel Zaima, Chris Bowser, Rebecca Houser, Chris Girgenti

lions mane jellyfish

A Lion’s Mane Jellyfish

Here’s to a happy and green royal wedding,

UGS

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Happy Conpost Awareness Week, UESiders!!

As the dwindling poundage of UES waste attests, are we ever aware!!

It’s Teachers Appreciation Week, as well!! 

And this is Art in the Garden Month!!

Diving right into a very dense May:

Saturday, May 5th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

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

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm

At their tables will be American Pride Seafood, Bread Alone, Ballard’s Honey,  Sikking Flowers, Samascott, Rising Sun Beef, Old Mother Hubbert,  Gajeski, Hawthorne and Nolasco Farms!!

But and so sorry to say, Hudson Valley Duck has departed  our market…  Hopefully not forever if Market Manager Supremo Margaret has her way…

The great good news is that, yes, our own Master Knife Sharpener and Ale Wife Farm will be returning to the 82nd Street fold!! 

And Market Manager G adds:  “Celebrate Cinco de Mayo in style with a farmers market fiesta!! We’ll be celebrating not just the return of our great knife sharpener, but  Ale Wife Farm , too!!  Come for the tacos, but stay for your weekly dose of delicious seasonal Food!!” 

Last week’s recycling totals:   77 lbs batteries;  16 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 3 pairs of eye glasses; 12 compost bins; 40 bags of clothes. 

And the shredding total was/is…  An all-time record-setting 10480 lbs!!!

Friday, May 4th to Sunday, May 6th:  Frieze Art Fair

Randall’s Island Park

The annual uber fair with some of the world’s most exciting new talents combined with iconic names in modern and contemporary art on view!!   Yes, it’s eat, drink, make take in world class art and right in our own backyard!!  Tickets, $18-$108.  Kids under 12, free.   For more

Monday, May 7th:  5th Annual Friends of the Esplanade Spring Benefit!!

Bar Felice, 1591 First Avenue, 6:30-8:30pm

Such a great community endeavor!!  Such great food!!  Such good company!!   The best raffle prizes ever!!   Be a part of our Esplanade’s rebirth!!  For details

Thursday, May 10th & Monday, May 14th:  Macbeth at the Beekman Theater

1271 Second Avenue, 7:30pm

Love that the Beekman’s taken to bringing such special stuff as this on UES screens:   London National Theater Live’s  production of Shakespeare’s “Macbeth”!!   $20.  For more and tickets

Saturday, May 12th:  Schurz Park’s 2018 Plant Sale!

East End Avenue at 86th Street, 9:30am-4:30pm

So many gorgeous, healthy plants just begging to beautify our streets, parks, gardens and homes…  Every penny benefiting that UES jewel… Carl Schurz Park!!  For full details… 

Saturday, May 19th: Fun with Fungi

Queens Botanical Garden, 43-50 Main Street, Flushing, 10:30am-12:30pm

Next step/further refinement to our superior compost collection…  Cultivating beneficial fungi (AKA mushrooms)!  $6.   For more and tickets

Sunday, May 20th:  High Bridge Walking Tour

Meet at the High Bridge, 2301 Amsterdam Avenue at 172nd Street, 12pm

Our city’s oldest bridge (think 1848) has been through plenty in its 180 years, including signature NYC neglect and vandalism.  But thanks to the 2012-2015 renovation, its once again a public pleasure, engineering marvel and NYC icon!!  Renovation project manager Bryan Diffley leads yet another great NYC H2O outing!!  $30.  For tickets and more

Tuesday, May 29th to Monday, June 4th:  11th Annual World Science Festival

Venues throughout NYC 

An amazing array of talks/lectures and hand-on experiences for folks of all ages and science proficiency ranging from robotics to a fish count in NYC’s waters!!  Really, not to be missed!!  For details (and are there plenty) and tickets…  (And then there’re the programs designed for kids…)

Hello, June:

Saturday, June 2nd:   New World of the Number 7 Train Walking Tour

Meeting place TBA with reservation, 10am-5:30am

NYC walking tour pioneer Dr. Jack Eichenbaum revives and updates one of his classics ranging over Number 7 terrain from Hudson Yards,  Long Island City, Woodside Queen and beyond!!  $49 with space limited to 25!  For more and reservations…   

Miscellany, commencing with some carping:

No surprise given past performance of NYC’s (so-called) Landmarks Preservation, that they’ve okayed construction of a 9-story hotel threatening the stability of  that NYC treasure, the 1832 Merchant’s House Museum at 24 East 4th.  The moderately good news is opposition being led by the great Greenwich Village Society for Historic Preservation.  To read up on the situation and send a letter of support…  

So, how come we get affordable/senior housing with the look of bunkers, located in the coils of a bridge ramps, when folks in Brooklyn get…   The work of world class architects…?

When the editor of “Waste Today”  (yup, we read it!) weighs in on the U.S.A.’s food waste problem, no qeustion, it’s ultra real…

An then the NYC Waste Characterization Study…  ((We’re doing great but can do better!!)

What’s involved when a scrap yard undertakes a renovation

Calculate your personal  plastic footprint

The Times” chronicle of the whirlwind of grant that took down many, including the chief of Precinct 19…!! 

The NYC connection to fabulous  Kentucky Derby headwear

Of course, you can have that violin repaired here in NYC

shelving system made from recycled fabric

Light on animals this time out, BUT these item pretty much take up the slack:

NYC’s first Cat Camp…!!

America’s only marsupial is…??

And our weekly treats from the Hudson River Almanac:

4/27 – Troy: We were on the Poestenkill today to remove a trial glass eel fyke net we had installed. After nine days, our total was five elvers and one glass eel (we were so excited to see that one glass eel!). While removing the net, we noticed glittery flashes of herring scales in the water. Bending down to look at them closer, I realized that the bottom of the stream wasn’t covered in granular sand, but in billions of herring eggs. There were herring eggs everywhere, from the damp rocks we were standing on, to the rip-rap up the bank where high tide has reached. Sinking our fingers into a quiet pool, we found several inches of eggs. The source of the eggs became apparent when the stream would break into a flurry of action, and the herring tails, probably alewives, would surface, flitting back and forth in the current. Two weeks ago, these herring were just arriving from the sea. Despite the drizzly spring day, we were reminded of how rich this estuary is, in terms of life and beauty.– Gracie Ballou, Aiden Mabey

Some of those herring                  eggs

4/21 – Manhattan: A scrubby slope, along Payson Avenue at Inwood Hill Park, was covered with leaves of Star-of-Bethlehem; it seemed to have spread tenfold in a couple of years, but no flowers yet. A Yoshino cherry was full of white blossoms, but the nearby crabapples, that have blossomed at about the same time in past years, were not yet budding. A red maple and a pink weeping cherry were full-blown and lovely.

On the path, up through the Clove, mats of lesser celandine had a few flowers, and little blossoms of spicebush were all through the woods. There were a few cotyledons of jewelweed and several big patches of Dutchman’s-breeches, with a few flowers beginning to open. I think this is the only place they grow on Manhattan. Up on the ridge, forsythia was blooming, and periwinkles were glowing in all the sunny places. The leaves of day-lily were now about a foot high; it had spread explosively since last year. Leaves of true celandine and herb-robert were plentiful. On my way down from the ridge, I passed a single budding hawthorne; the contrast between the pink buds and fierce thorns was striking. – Thomas Shoesmith

Star of Bethlehem

(Star-of-Bethlehem (Ornithogalum umbellatum) grows from little bulbs that look like cocktail onions. On this slope, winter rains have washed much of the soil away, especially near the bottom, leaving many bulbs exposed on the surface. Since it began putting out leaves a couple of weeks ago, contractile roots have pulled the bulbs into the soil, so now none are to be seen! – Thomas Shoesmith]

4/24 – Staten Island, New York City: While letting out my chickens for the day, I heard the call of a common loon. I looked up and there it was, flying overhead, standing out beautifully, against the clear blue sky. This was an adult in full breeding colors, calling all the way, as it headed southeast toward the Lower Bay of New York Harbor. I was immediately transferred back to my youth and vacations spent at lakes in the Adirondacks. – Sean Gannon

A Common Loon

[Sean heard the tremolo call of the common loon. The call sounds like a quavering laugh, and it is the only one of their four distinct calls that it gives while flying. – Tom Lake]

In ultra green happiness,

UGS

 

 

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It’s the International Day of Remembrance for All Victims of Chemical Warfare, UESiders…

So, given recent events, let’s keep that in mind…

And how about – if you haven’t already expressed your disatisfaction with the Parks Department using child and all-human-unfriendly pesticides in our NYC parks – send Commissioner Silver an email to that effect?!  (Sample message:  Please stop using all pesticides in NYC Parks!!)

Keeping with the protection of Parks’ spirit…  It’s National Parks Week, too!! 

Keeping with the over-riding subject LIFE,  it’s also National Donate Life Week…  (Incredible that a single donor can save 8 lives and heal so many others!)  To sign up to become a donor… 

Now fasten seatbelts for the upcoming seven days: 

Friday, April 27th:  Electronics Recycling Collection

Schurz Park, East End Avenue between 84th & 85th, 10am-4pm

If it’s tech, bring it on!!  But no appliances, fridges or microwaves, please!!  Free…  For the full list of what’ll be acccepted and not… 

Saturday, April 28th:  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,  Samascott, Hudson Valley Duck, Rising Sun Beef, Old Mother Hubbert,  Gajeski, Hawthorne and Nolasco Farms!!

Market Manager-in-Chief Margareet is most happy to announce:  “Sikking Flowers returns to 82nd Street this weekend!!  A true sign of spring!!”

Last week’s recycling totals:   51 lbs batteries;  23 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 39 pairs of eye glasses; 12 compost bins; 35 bags of clothes. 

We should have the shredding poundage next week!!

 

Saturday, April 28th:  National Prescription Drug Take Back Day

Lenox Hill Hospital, 100 East 77th Street, 10am-2pm

Whew!!  Been ages since the DEA’s designated a UES a drug drop-off site…  And not for want of Lenox Hill Hospital trying hard!!  So come shed those unwanted and/ or ridiculously out-of-date medicine bottles and contents!!

Saturday, April 28th:  Asphalt Green’s Big Swim, Big Kick

Asphalt Green, 1750 York at 91st Street, 11am-4:30pm

Swim…  Play soccer…  Or do both!!  Free!!  (But you can donate to promote fitness of our fellow New Yorkers through sports!!)  For more

Saturday, April 28th:  NYC Parks 11th Annual Street Games

Thomas Jefferson Park, First Avenue at 111th Street, 11am-3pm

Four solid hours of retro play!!  Think pogo sticks, hula hoops, yo-yo’s and plenty more (like wheelchair basketball)!!  Free!!  Prizes!!  For the total rundown

Saturday, April 28th:  What’s in NYC’s Trash Talk

67th Street Branch Library, 328 East 67th Street, 2:30-4:30pm

Uber recycling expert (and UESider) weighs in on what we’re tossing and how we – who’ve reduced our waste by that stunning 40% –  can whittle it down even further!!  Free!!

Sunday, April 29th:  Alice Aycock Pavilion Re-Opening Celebration

East River Esplanade at 60th Street, 1-4pm

Been many a year of restoration, but now this extraordinary Esplanade structure and space is ready for the enjoyment of all!!  Think art talk (the Pavilion being a work of art), music, ice cream treats and all kinds of other fun for kids!!   Free, of course!!

And then it’s May:

Monday, May 7th:  5th Annual Friends of the Esplanade Spring Benefit

Bar Felice, 1591 First Avenue, 6:30-8:30pm

Such a great community endeavor!!  Such great food!!  Such good company!!   The best raffle prizes ever!!   Be a part of our Esplanade’s rebirth!!  For details

Friday, May 11th:  The Sociology of Horseshoe Crabs Lecture

Hunter College, 695 Park Avenue, 7-9pm

How many ways have these weird-looking creatures been deployed for human betterment…  From fertilizer to medicine!  More than  time we learned something about them, too, and Professor Lisa Jean Moore is the person to fill in that missing info!   It’s another great NYC H2O lecture, folks!!   Free but a donation suggested.  For complete details

Sunday, May 20th:  High Bridge Walking Tour

Meet at the High Bridge, 2301 Amsterdam Avenue at 172nd Street, 12pm

Our city’s oldest bridge (think 1848) has been through plenty in its 180 years, including signature NYC neglect and vandalism.  But thanks to the 2012-2015 renovation, its once again a public pleasure, engineering marvel and NYC icon!!  Renovation project manager Bryan Diffley leads yet another great NYC H2O outing!!  $30.  For tickets and more

Tuesday, May 29th to Monday, June 4th:  11th Annual World Science Festival

Venues throughout NYC 

An amazing array of talks/lectures and hand-on experiences for folks of all ages and science proficiency ranging from robotics to a fish count in NYC’s waters!!  Really, not to be missed!!  For details (and are there plenty) and tickets

Coming up: 

Sunday, July 15th to Thursday, July 19th:  Watershed Institute for Teachers

Cold Spring, New York

How about this for a wonderful deal, you grown-ups:  Five days in a at “summer camp” exploring forests, waters, science, history, the NYC Watershed and its water supply system…  Going on field trips…  Getting the gist of some 20 hands-on activities like timber milling…  With nights spent in charming cabins??!!  Ending on Day 5 with your earning 24 credit hours if you’re a teacher or non-formal educator!!  And all 100% free!!  For more and to sign up (by May 15th)… 

7  Summer  2018 Weekends:  NYS First Time Camper Program

All Around NYState

And we quote, “First-time campers will be provided with a family tent, sleeping bags, sleeping pads, camp chairs, camp stove, lantern, and even firewood. A Camping Ambassador will meet families at the campsite and help them get camp set up with a Camping 101 lesson. To make the weekend getaway even more fun, campers will have an opportunity to learn from experts how to fish, hike, bird watch, paddle and more!!”  For more and to sign up

 

Earth Day 1970

Young Marchers, First Earth Day, April 22, 1970

In the miscellany file:

Plenty of great-sounding summer programs for kids grades 3-12  at the Center for Architecture…  (Get ’em designing green at a tender age!)

Very much enjoyed NYS DEC’s comment on a water quality application filed in connection with a proposed gas line project… 

Rooftop solar right next door in East Harlem now…  (When on our UES??!!)

Most annoying the UWSide’s getting a second Trader Joe’s while we have yet to have one…

Volunteer opportunties don’t get any more lovely and important than this one

Pause for some activism:

If you think constructing a technologically dated, highly polluting incinerator upstate New York is a poor idea…  (Check out “the proposal”)

Or that another attempt to open up pristine Bristol Bay to toxic metals’ mining should be allowed… 

Or that rules for disposal of toxic coal ash should be relaxed

Or that zoning for NYC building heights is already high enough

In a more zen mode:

Who knew Sanitation fielded their first micro-grant ($2,000)  competition with winners devising the most innovative organic waste management strategies?!!  And the winners and strategies are…  

brief history of state dinners

Hello, animals:

Inexplicable in the current environment, but  fish heading up 4 American rivers will soon be having an easier “passage”… 

The red-cockaded woodpecker rebounds

seal in the Gowanus…  (Guide the poor thing to cleaner waters!!)

And from the Hudson River Almanac:

4/13 – Rockland County:  The warm weather had wildlife out and moving.  I came upon a large snapping turtle waiting for a chance to cross the path into Congers Lake.  I gingerly measured the turtle’s carapace (18-inches long by 12-inches wide) – Chris Galligan

snapping turle

That Snapping Turtle

4/13 – Manhattan:  We checked our collection gear at The River Project’s sampling station on the lighthouse tender Lilac at Pier 25 four days this week.  While our traps and pots did not catch a si ngle fish, we did catch an incredible number of invertebrates that, collectively, support fishes as prey.  Included were no fewer than 100 shore shrimp (Palaemonetes   sp.), a dozen sand shrimp (Crangon septemspinosa), isopods and a few mud crabs (Panopeidae). –  Siddhartha Hayes

sand shrimp

A Sand Shrimp in the Sand

In everlasting greenness,

UGS

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Happy, Happy Earth Day, UESiders!!

And have you ever earned the joy of those 24 hours…  You who’ve so amped up your recycling that Sanitation’s reduced the projected number of trucks that’ll be heading to the the MTS by 40%!!

And we’re just getting started on the length, breadth and artfulness of our recycling, yes?? 

Yes!!

Meanwhile, happy Volunteer Week and Poetry Month, too!!  (Check out the Library of Congress’s celebratory selections from their recorded poetry collection…)

And lest we forget…  Today’s NYC Landmarks Day!!  April 21st is also World Fish Migration and World Record (as in vinyl) Day!!   April 28th is National Prescription Drug Take Back Day!!  (And the 18th was Bat Appreciation Day!!)

Fasten your seatbelts for the weekend and week ahead:

Saturday, April 21st:  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,  Samascott, Hudson Valley Duck, Rising Sun Beef, Old Mother Hubbert,  Gajeski, Hawthorne and Nolasco Farms!!

Market Manager G announces:  “We’ll be missing our friends Consider Bardwell, BUT Valley Shepherd returns this weekend!!   And stay tuned for a big mystery surprise next Saturday, April 28th!!”

(Look for Consider Bardwell when 92nd Street reopens late June!”)      

Recycling totals:  4/7/2018 – 62 lbs batteries;  10 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 12 compost bins; 26 bags of clothes;  4/14/2018 – 77 lbs batteries;  8 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 4 pairs of glasses;  12 compost bins; 30 bags of clothes 

Just great!!

Saturday, April 21st:  Shred-A-Thon – Earth Day Edition 

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

The day is finally at hand:

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.)

Thank you, AM Seawright and CMs Kallos and Powers for funding Shred-A-Thons!!

 

 

Saturday, April 21st:  NYC H2O Cleanup at Conference House Park

Conference House Park, Staten Island, 10am-2pm

Up to date with your shredding?  Well, here’s another Earth-friendly activity to celebrate the day…  Tending to the health of precious NYC wetlands!!  Transportation and lunch provided…   A hands-on seining adventure with naturalist Seth Wolney adds to the fun!!  In partnership with CM Borelli and Partnership for Parks!!  For full details and to sign up

 

Saturday, April 21st:  Roosevelt Island Cherry Blossom Festival

All over the Island, Roosevelt Island, 11am

Think music and dance performances (12:30-5pm, Four Freedoms Park)…  A place to picnic and explore the host of great foodcarts (11am, across from Cornell Tech)…  The Japanese tea ceremony (11am, Southpoint Park)…  The Japanese cultural fair (12-3pm, Gallery RIVA)…  No stopping the fabulous Earth Day events!!  For more 

Saturday, April 21st:  Historic Printing Making Workshop 

Mount Vernon Hotel Museum, 421 East 61st Street, 1-3pm

Create your own hand-inked views of New York City and learn the history of the mono-type  print-making process under the guidance of artist  Julio Valdez who also curated the Museum’s current exhibit, “Perspectives of Diverse City”!!  Free!  To make your (necessary) reservation… 

Monday, April 23rd:  Albany March/Rally for the Climate

Free bus travel from many locations around NYC & NYS

For all  the environmental progress we’ve made, NYS renewable power stands as a pretty pitiful 3%!! Then – albeit we’re not fracking ourselves – there’re the assorted pipelines transporting and dated power plants utilizing fracked gas!!  Not a bad thing for the governor to hear dissatisfied voices!!  For more and that free transportation

Tuesday, April 24th:  East River Crew’s Community Rowing Season Begins!

East River Esplanade at 96th Street, 4:30 pm

We’re more than ready to be out on our East River in one of the Crew’s wonderful boats savoring the most wonderful perspective on NYC and our the Esplanade!!  A true and great UES experience!!  Row or just enjoy!!  Free!! 

Friday, April 27th:  Electronics Recycling Collection

Schurz Park, East End Avenue between 84th & 85th, 10am-4pm

If it’s tech, bring it on!!  But no appliances, fridges or microwaves!!  Free…  For the full list of what’ll be acccepted and not… 

Saturday, April 28th:  National Prescription Drug Take Back Day

Lenox Hill Hospital, 100 East 77th Street, 10am-2pm

Whew!!  Been ages since the DEA’s designated a UES a drug drop-off site…  And not for want of Lenox Hill trying hard!!  So come shed those ridiculously out-of-date medicine bottles and contents!!

Saturday, April 28th:  What’s in NYC’s Trash Talk

67th Street Branch Library, 328 East 67th Street, 2:30-4:30pm

Uber recycling expert (and UESider) weighs in on what we’re tossing and how we – who’ve reduced our waste by that stunning 40% –  can whittle it down even further!!  Free!!

Sunday, April 29:  Alice Aycock Pavilion Re-Opening Celebration

East River Esplanade at 60th Street, 1-4pm

Been many a year of restoration, but now this extraordinary Esplanade structure and space is ready for the enjoyment of all!!  Think art talk (the Pavilion being a work of art), music, ice cream treats and fun for the kids!!   Free, of course!!

Already shaping up to be one intense May:

 

Thursday, May 3rd to Sunday, May 6th:  Frieze Art Fair

Randall’s Island Park

The annual uber fair with some of the world’s most exciting new talents combined with iconic names in modern and contemporary art on view!!   Yes, it’s eat, drink, make take in world class art and right in our own backyard!!  Tickets, $18-$108.  Kids under 12, free.   For more

Friday, May 4th to Sunday, May 6th:  Jane’s Walk NYC

The Length and Breadth of NYC!!

One of the best and most New York of any of our great city’s fabulous events!!  Think 200-plus different, intriguing walks (with ever more of them accessible) to choose from in 2018!!   And the offerings are

Monday, May 7th:  5th Annual Friends of the Esplanade Spring Benefit

Bar Felice, 1591 First Avenue, 6:30-8:30pm

Such a great community endeavor!!  Such great food!!  Such good company!!   The best raffle ever!!   Be a part of our Esplanade’s rebirth!!  For details

Sunday, May 20th:  DSNY Spring Safe Disposal Event

120th Street between Broadway & Amsterdam Avenues, 10am-4pm

Bring on those mouldering cans of transmission fluid and shellac, unwanted medicines and cosmetics (!), pesticides, electronics and more.  For the complete list, how recyclables should be safely packaged, how to get to the event and more

Leaping right into miscellaneous activism:

If you think our methane emission standards should be maintained

Believe we should have and Congress should pass tougher data security protections...

Or that individuals imprisoned in NYS should be allowed ample reading material

Or that (universally considered) cruel wildlife snare traps ought to be banned in NYS... 

Or that uranium mining should be barred from the Grand Canyon

And stuff it’s necessary to know, especially on Earth Day eve:

Check out this outstanding Independent Lens doc on the chemicals in our H2O… 

America’s most endangered rivers

The 20 nations who are worst handlers of their plastic waste…  (Of course, we’re one of them…)

Those railcars of reeking NYC sewer sludge?  They’ve finally been emptied…  Into Alabama landfill/AKA Mother Earth.

Going more local:

Yikes!!  Might New Jersey get the drop on NYS on renewable energy score…?? 

NYC’s worst chain grocery chain is…  (Like there’s any doubt!)

Glaser’s, the UES’s 116-year old bakery, will be closing on July 1st… 

Sympathy for Gowanus Canal residents who are resisting loss on two counts…  Demolition of a 100-year old building and construction of a zillion gallon Combined Sewage Overflow tank!! 

So much lighter: 

Calling at parents and educators of NYC public school kids 5th to 12th grades:  As in years past, Czech artist Kamil Kubik’s Foundation is offering $500 art grants to foster the talents of gifted young artists!!  For more and to apply

Best 5 American cities for gardening...  (We rate!!) 

For sure, Germany’s leading the pack in diverse planting of green roofs!!  (There’s a German green roof that’s 93-years old!!)

The truth and beauty of pussy willows

NYC’s oldest townhouse…  (If it’s been “restored”, what state was it in before??!!) 

Of course, there’re green salons!!  (Starting leaning on yours!!)

Let there be animals:

Not enough that this item earned mention as last week’s Eco Tip:  How sweet is it that we can give a baby critters a big hand when we  recycle our mascara and other make-up wands??   (Bring ’em to the Greenmarket compost table!!)

Time for another installment of the Hudson River Almanac:

3/31 – Manhattan: We checked our research sampling gear in the Hudson River Park three days this week at The River Project’s sampling station on the lighthouse tender Lilac at Pier 25. Each day we caught no fish but did collect a large number of grass shrimp, isopods, and mud crabs. – Siddhartha Hayes

[“Grass shrimp” is a collective common name for three native species of small shrimp found in the salty and brackish waters of the estuary including; two species of shore shrimp (Palaemonetes pugio and P. vulgaris) and sand shrimp (Crangon septemspinosa). Another larger, but much less common, native shrimp in the Hudson River is the brown shrimp (Penaeus aztecus). There is also an invasive species, the Oriental shrimp (Palaemon macrodactylus), native to estuaries and coastal Pacific Ocean waters of Russia, Japan, and South Korea. The “grass” reference comes from one of their preferred habitats: submerged aquatic vegetation (SAV) in the estuarine shallows, colloquially referred to as “grass.” – Tom Lake]

4/4 – Haverstraw Bay, HRM 40-35: Our DEC Region 3 Hudson River Fisheries Unit caught a large (32-inches) shortnose sturgeon in their research gill net today. We took a fin ray to age the fish. Not unlike a tree, sturgeon fin rays have growth rings that we can count. While this was a large one, we did get one last year that was more than 39-inches. – Amanda Higgs

sturgeon

A Sturgeon

[Shortnose sturgeon (Acipenser brevirostrum) and Atlantic sturgeon (A. oxyrinchus) are long-lived, native fishes. The former tends to spend its life in the estuary, while the latter is anadromous, returning from the sea to spawn. Of the two species, shortnose are the smallest, typically not exceeding 36-inches in length (Atlantics can reach 8-feet long). They are both endangered species, protected by federal law, and possession of either species of Hudson River sturgeon, is prohibited. Sturgeon caught for research are collected under federal permit. Their presence on the Federal Endangered Species list comes as the result of many factors, including past over-harvesting. They are not-infrequently caught (and released) by anglers as unintended by-catch while fishing for other species. -Tom Lake]

We will be eternally green,

UGS

 

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Happy Strangest Spring Ever, UESiders!!

And in that odd-ball vein…

Happy as we are for our West Side neighbors and Hudson River Park Friends to be receiving a $50M gift to complete work on the park, be nice if the governor would also turn his gaze east and to our much more needy Esplanade… 

More mixed feelings still re the news that Target will soon be siting one of its smaller scale stores at 1201 Third, SE corner of 70th, a space previously home to Gracious Home’s linens/lamps annex.  Likely the majority of Target merch will be clothes, beauty, decor and food-to-go (like we need more of that!), but let’s hope some of its well-priced household, cleaning and paper products  find their way onto those shelves!!

And, yes, it’s one less empty far UES storefront, bringing total vacancies to 144

Then there’s the zillion story building coming to east side of First between 79th and 80th…

Meanwhile, seems like a version of presently banned (but riden everywhere) e-bikes could soon be legal…  That version being the “pedal-assisted e-bike” which will somehow be limited to a speed of 20 mph or less.  (Will there be some easily identifiable physical difference between these bikes? Will anybody be clocking the on-the-street speed of these things?)  For a bit deeper background…  

Ah, and the NYC rotting sewer waste/Alabama landfill saga continues… 

Sure, all of that, but… 

How fabulous is it that, as of today, NYState’s officially closed all snowshoe trails for the season!!

Then there’s the excellent week ahead:

Friday, April 6th:  NYSkies Astronomy Seminar

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

Star master John Pasmino expands on the almost lost art/sport of watching artificial satellites.   (No more Sputnik, of course, but how ’bout  Tiangogn-1 heading earthward and flaming out last week?!)  As ever, free and fabulous! 

Friday, April 6th to Saturday, May 19th:  Social Housing – New European Projects

Center for Architecture, 536 LaGuardia Place

Creating new, adequate living places for a burgeoning population is a challenge worldwide.  But, as this marvelous small exhibit demonstrates, folks on the other side of the pond have solutions we can draw on!!  For more and hours…  (Thanks to reader Karen Lane for the tip!)

(Meanwhile, Sweden’s just announced architectural standards to promote sustainability and promote integration and greater equality!!)

Saturday, April 7th:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

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

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm

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

Market Manager G sez:  “The calendar says it’s spring, but what’s this about more temps in the 40’s and snow?!  So, come warm up with this week’s demo:  A light but nourishing soup at the market info tent!!   You’ll then be in just the right mood to join Greenmarket’s Plastic Cleanse and help reduce even more NYC waste!!  Not sure where to begin? Grab a Plastic Cleanse starter kit from me, G!”

Recycling totals:  85 lbs batteries;  15 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 12 compost bins; 31 bags of clothes.  

Brilliant, folks!!

Thursday, April 12th:  Community Board 8 Forum on Homelessness

Ramaz School, 125 East 85th Street, 6:30pm

Join members of the Health, Seniors, & Social Services Committee of Community Board 8, along with elected officials and community members, to discuss homelessness in New York City and, in particular, on the UES.   What’s being done and how can we all help?  

On the horizon:

Saturday, April 14th:  New York March for Science

Washington Sqaure Park, 9am-1pm

Commencing with a teach-in (9-10am and we love the retro touch!) on the vital importance of evidence based science!!  For more…  (If you can’t make it, consider signing the petition!)

Saturday, April 14th:  Ridgewood Reservoir Tour

Meeting site accompanies registration, 10:30am

NYC H2O’s Jonathan Turer leads an exploration of the one-time NYC water source, now an unspoiled green treasure in our city’s heart!  A collaboration with the Historic District Council.  Friends of the Council, $15.  Non-members, $20.  For tickets and more…  

Saturday, April 21st:  Shred-A-Thon – Earth Day Edition 

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

Better be sorting:

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.)

Thank you, CMs Kallos and Powers and AM Seawright, for your wonderful grants!! 

Friday, April 27th:  Arbor Day

All Across America

Tidy up the tree beds on your block…  Consider gathering funds for a street tree guard…  Adopt a Bicycle Island Garden on First or Second…  So many ways to care for the trees who do so much for the air we breathe… 

Then, in the month of May: 

Wednesday, May 9th:  Albany Lobby Day for School Speed Cameras

Departing NYC by bus at 6am

Present law permits only 140 school speed cameras for the entire state!!  Way, way far from enough parents and a whole host of interested groups now say and they’re heading for the state capital to weigh in!!  Should you wish to join forces…  

On to this week’s miscellany collection:

UES’s Beekman Theater seems to be programming one-night screenings of interesting, non-Hollywood films…  Last week “Hitler’s Art” (as in the art H. hated), this week  “Distant Sky: Nick Cage & Bad Seeds Live in Copenhagen… 

Who’s making our subway signage and where

Why we want to be exercising young no matter what life form we are…  

NYC teens (some of the super contributors) curating the life and times of our subway system on Wikipedia

Amazing what our Conservation officers get up to in just one week

Of course, there’s a bit of activism in the mix, too:

If you think protection of our migratory birds should be continued

Should you believe NYS should ban polystyrene/styrofoam

Or that Lowe’s should stop carrying paint strippers containing methylene chloride (it produces fumes implicated in some 60 deaths) …

Totally off the beaten path:

Innovation in pasta shapes

Some of the places where legends (of varying degrees) once lived and/or played in our metropolitan area 

An acupuncture vet

A totally different kind of cooperative effort (searching for the lost)

Yet another UES surprise…  The Albertine, a book club of long-standing, devoted to French literature… 

Check out the miniature T.Rex fossil unearthed in Montana

Let there be animals:

Like the miraculous wood frog

Penguin (including babies) cam!! 

A fantastic library of animal videos from the CA Academy of Sciences…

Brush up on identifying those lovely spring bird songs

None roaming the streets and bi-ways of NYC (yet), but for when we’re elsewhere in NYState, why not lend a citizen science hand studying signs of black bears and other wonderful wildlife??    iSeeMammals makes it easy and fun!

NYS DEC’s way upping their video game with this on the Atlantic Sturgeons frequenting our Hudson River

To have a bodega cat…  Or not

The 19-year old dog who found a forever home

And from ye olde and great Hudson River Almanac:

3/27 – Hudson River Estuary Eel Project Update: As our stream temperatures reached 40 degrees F, we began to see eel numbers pick up in the tributaries. We are now up to ten sites with reported catches to date including: Richmond Creek, Staten Island (50), Blind Brook, Rye (81), Sarah Lawrence Center for the Urban River at Beczak, Yonkers (503), Furnance Brook, Cortlandt (1,790), Minisceongo Creek, West Haverstraw (3,719), Quassaick Creek, Newburgh (2,000), Fall Kill, Poughkeepsie (50), Black Creek, Esopus (500), Enderkill, Staatsburg (5), and Saw Kill, Tivoli (20). – Chris Bowser

Eels

Some of those glass eels

Being green is ever so fine,

UGS

 

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Happy Passover and Easter, UESiders!!

May your holidays be full of joy and family!!

(On a lesser note, guess what?  This Sunday’s also the first day of the NYS 2018 trout and salmon fishing season!!)

As the second week of our so-called “spring” commences:

Saturday, March 31st:  82nd Street/St. Stephen’s Greenmarket

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

Compost & Clothes Collection, 9am–1pm

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

Market Manager G sez:  “It’s an eggcellent day to come to the market!!  We’re celebrating Easter a day early with some colorful and natural egg dyeing. And don’t forget to get your winter warrior cards stamped. This Saturday is the last day!!”

Also of primo importance:  Do not forget to sign the Greenmarket funding petition at Manager G’s table!!

Recycling totals:  3/17 – 40 lbs batteries;  20 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 12 compost bins; 26 bags of clothes.  3/24 –  76 lbs. batteries;  30 lbs. cords, corks, cellphones and cartridges; 6 pairs eye glasses; 12 compost bins; 39 bags of clothes. 

WOW!!

And then it’s April:

Sunday, April 1st:  The Easter Parade & Bonnet Festival

Fifth Avenue from 49th to 57th Streets, 10am

A total, ultimate NYC classic!!  Bring on those bonnets!!

East Bonnet

Every Wednesday:  Mindfulness Meditation at the Asia Society

Lila Acheson Wallace Auditorium, Asia Society of New York, 725 Park Avenue, 12:30-1pm

Sure, we have a certain affection for our New York stress…  But relief’s wonderful, too.  Sessions under the guidance of master Archimedes Bibiano.  Free for members.  Non-members, $10.  Seniors and students, $5.  For more

Thursday, April 5th:  Special East River Fifties Alliance Meeting

Morso Restaurant, , 420 East 59th Street, 8am

The 95-story 58th Street Zombie Mega Tower’s trying to come back to life with the developer now turning to the NYC Board of Standards and Appeals with this gathering vital to dvising neighborhood strategy for the upcoming BSA meeting on Tuesday, April 10th!!  This is big, people!!

Thursday, April 5th:  Harlem Creek Walking Tour

Meet at 100th Street and Central Park West, 6:30-8:30pm

Trace the now hidden course of this once lively waterway with urban explorer Steve Duncan!!  Another great NYC H2O water-centric event!!  (We’ve done the also buried Spring Street tour and it was wonderful!!)   For more and tickets

Saturday, April 7th to Sunday, April 15th:  Participatory Budgeting Vote

Sites TBA but they’ll be all over the UES, including the Greenmarket

Until then, here’s the list of most worthy nominees!!   And, of course, we’ll be keeping you in the loop!!

And then:

Tuesday, April 10th:  58th Street Mega Tower Appeal Hearing

NYC Board of Standard and Appeals, 22 Reade Street, 9:30am

A pivotal moment/meeting for the fabric of/life in the East 50’s!!  Be there if you possibly can, residents!!  Bus transport provided and departing at 8:15.  For full details and to reserve your seat downtown…  (And to whom to write to at the BSA if you can’t attend…)

Wednesday, April 11th:  World War I  Commemoration & Celebration of York Avenue

In front of the Webster Branch Library, 1465 York Avenue between 77th & 78th, 11am

Okay, so WWI didn’t end till November 11, 1918 and York Avenue wasn’t renamed (previously it was Avenue A) until 1928…  No UESider turns down an invitation to party by/with its electeds – in this case, AM Seawright!! 

Saturday, April 21st:  Shred-A-Thon – Earth Day Edition 

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

We’re in the countdown mode:

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.)

Thank you, AM Seawright and CMs Kallos and Powers for funding Shred-A-Thons!!

Saturday, April 21st:  NYC H2O Cleanup at Conference House Park

Conference House Park, Staten Island, 10am-2pm

Up to date with your shredding?  Well, here’s another Earth-friendly activity to celebrate the day…  Tending to the health of precious NYC wetlands!!  Transportation and lunch provided…   A hands-on seining adventure with naturalist Seth Wolney adds to fun!!  In partnership with CM Borelli and – who else? – Partnership for Parks!!  For full details and to sign up

Tuesday, April 24th:  East River Crew’s Community Rowing Season Begins!

East River Esplanade at 96th Street, 4:30 pm

We’re more than ready to be out on our East River in one of the Crew’s wonderful boats savoring the most wonderful perspective on the UES and the Esplanade!!  A true and great UES experience!!  Row or just enjoy!!  Free!! 

Friday, April 27th:  Electronics Recycling Collection

Schurz Park, East End Avenue between 84th & 85th, 10am-4pm

If it’s tech, bring it on!!  But no appliances, fridges or microwaves!!  Free…  For the full list of what’ll be acccepted and not… 

Looking forward to May:

Monday, May 7th:  5th Annual Friends of the Esplanade Spring Benefit

Bar Felice, 1591 First Avenue, 6:30-8:30pm

Such a great community endeavor!!  Such great food!!  Such good company!!   The best raffle ever!!   Be a part of our Esplanade’s rebirth!!  For details

Then July:

Mondays – Thursday, July 9th –  August 9th:  Green Girls Summer Institute

IS 204/Oliver Holmes, Long Island City, 9am-3pm

And we quote, “Based in Long Island City, Green Girls – ages 10 to 13 – travel to all five boroughs to study New York’s dynamic urban forests, parks and waterways, encouraging them to realize their potential to create change within their natural environment and learn about future careers in the sciences.”  Free!!  For more and to apply

Miscellany…  With a pause for a bit more activism:

Say what?  Seems that as things presently stand with proposed congestion pricing, surcharges would also apply to wheelchair accessible taxis

Further on NYC landfill challenges… 

The MTA’s more than thinking about whittling away at our crosstown bus service!!

Should you oppose exploitation of our wilderness areas

On the sunnier side of the street:

Our newest and way youngest Community Board 8 member!!

Phillips will be using recycled plastic in the fabrication of its Senseo Original Coffeemaker!!

Bring on urban farming (especially encasing great-looking futuristic apartment buildings)!! 

Nine really interesting books on botanical subjects

Another 3-D printed house in the works… 

Who knew the UES was home to the Institute for Study of the Ancient World?  And here’s what they get up to…  (Think Babylonian astronomy for openers!!)

Or that we had a reigning mushroom expert in our midst…  (He’ll be missed.)

Or a New Yorker who turned discarded wood into violins

Not a New Yorker, but another savior of our green heritage

NYC in spring bloom as per The Times

Why NYC water’s so fabulous

Be great to see displays like this in the produce department in our hood…

Time for the furry, finned and even slimey:

The great American spring migration has commenced!!  And Hawk Mountain keeps a wonderful tally of the flow…  

The kindness and care given Bulgarian storks

feline odyssey

Goat yoga lands in Brooklyn!!

One happy coyote heads double time back into the wild

Robotic fish (we like ’em)…

Then there’s fish plastic surgery!!

Beautiful slugs

And from the Hudson River Almanac:

3/12 – Yonkers: During a tour of the lower Hudson Valley, we made a stop at the Sarah Lawrence Center for the Urban River at Beczak. Elisa Caref gave us our first glance at this season’s glass eel migration, straight from their fyke net. Other treasures in the net included a juvenile mummichog (Fundulus heteroclitus) and small mud crabs.  Several oyster shells gave evidence to this important mollusk surviving, at least in small numbers, on the Yonkers waterfront.

Oysters

Some of Those Oysters

The salinity was a very low 2.0 parts-per-thousand (ppt).  – Chris Bowser, Rebecca Houser, Steve Stanne, Susan Pepe, Martice Smith, Grace Ballou, Aidan Mabey, Ashawna Abbott, Lyndi Hall, Alex Curtze, Erin Lefkowitz, Ryan Palmer, Elisa Caref.

(Here’s NYS’s 2018 shellfish harvesting schedule!!)

Our inspiration is green,

UGS

 

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