Monday, July 6, 2015

The New York Transit Museum is Worth a Visit

Many people do not know that the New York Transit Museum is the largest museum in the United States solely devoted to the history of urban public transportation. It is no wonder that this museum is one of the world’s premier museums of its kind, given that New York’s public transportation system is one of the world’s best.

Using tours, exhibitions, educational programs and workshops the museum is able to present the development of New York’s incredible system, which in many ways is the circulatory system of the living city.

The museum was first opened 40 years ago in downtown Brooklyn in an historic 1936 IND subway station. Since then the museum has continued to grow both in its scope and popularity. Visitors will be treated to amazing and informative exhibits such as “Steel, Stone, and Backbone,” which takes visitors on a tour of how New York’s 100 year-old subway system was built. “On the Streets” takes an in-depth look at the City’s system of busses and trolleys.

The New York Transit Museum is open Tuesday to Friday from 10am to 4pm; Saturday and Sunday from 11am to 5pm and closed on Mondays and major holidays and sometimes for special events. For more information visit their website.

Monday, June 8, 2015

Tour Museum Mile for Free

It is an astounding fact that along one 23-block stretch of Manhattan real estate there are some of the world’s greatest museums. Along Fifth Avenue, from the Metropolitan Museum of Art in the south, to The Africa Center in the north, are eight institutions offering a wide range of cultural treasures.
Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum Photo by Stevenuccia
On June 9, beginning at 5:45pm, those world-class museums will be open to the public for free for extended evening hours. To add to the special nature of the event a variety of entertainment venues will be open along the mile, as well as art-in-the-street.

At the Museo del Barrio the Calpulli Mexican Dance Company will perform while people can experience Mexican nostalgia and the making of art.

At the Museum of the City of New York there will be Hp Hop Dancing from Hush Tours’.

At the Jewish Museum Paul Miller, better known as DJ Spooky That Subliminal Kid will entertain. The family activity is making an accordion book using collage and drawing.

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Child Friendly Activities for You and Your Kids

Ann Frank Center USA
That long, long winter is finally letting up. Grab the kids and run to some, or all, of these fun-tastic events. It’s a sure cure for cabin fever and, hopefully another way to reconnect with your darling little ones.

Cinco de Mayo: At Kidville ViDi the ninos and ninas can eat some themed snacks, play in the gym, and rock to a Rockin’ Railroad concert. Art projects and a fiesta photobooth will be enjoyed by all. Tuesday May 5, 40 Gold Street, between Fulton and John Streets.

The Helpers of the Secret Annex: The Ann Frank Center USA is commemorating the 70th anniversary of the conclusion of World War II with family programming. The goal of the center is to help visitors of all ages to better understand the meaning and significance of the events of those days. This particular exhibit will focus on the personal stories of the brave people who brought food, clothing and more to the eight individuals, including Ann Frank, who were forced to hide from the Nazis in the Secret Annex. Recommended for ages 8 and up. The exhibit opens on May 6, and runs until December 30. 44 Park Place at Church Street.

New York Children’s Theater Festival:  This project brings new and creative plays and musicals to children. Two productions have already had their runs, but there are two more shows in May; Help Save the Monkey! (May 8-10); and The Meanest Birthday Girl (May 15-17). Each child receives a free coloring book with crayons, and after the show there is a free crafts project, refreshments, a Magic Wand parade and a chance to meet the members of the cast. For children ages 3 and up. 115 MacDougal Street, at Minetta Lane.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

April Means Tribeca Film Festival

One of the world’s most celebrated film festivals, participants in Tribeca can expect to rub elbows with some of the leading cutting edge producers, directors, film critics, and general movie fans to be found anywhere.

The big news this year is that Tribeca will feature the debut of 11 female directors from the New York area. Among them are Erin Lee Carr, whose film “Thought Crimes” examines the story of the alleged “cannibal cop” Gilberto Valle. Natallia Leite will present “Bare,” which takes a look at the story of a waitress who falls in love with and older female customer in what appears to be an almost mystical, drug-filled love affair.
Photo credit:hashi photo

The festival will fun for 11 days beginning on April 15. There will be 40 first-time directorial premiers and more than 100 feature films presented.  The opening night special showing will be Bao Nguyen’s Live from New York! which is a tribute to the television comedy show Saturday Night Live. The closing night event will be a 25th anniversary tribute to the film Goodfellas, where the classic movie’s creators and cast will all come together at the Beacon Theater.

Screening will take place all over New York. Passes can be purchased from $40 to $300, while individual tickets are on sale for $10 to $35.

Monday, March 9, 2015

Karaoke Night at Arlene’s Grocery

Photo from Flikr
Are you a repressed rock star? Do you know someone who is? Then why not take the fantasy to the next level, and show the world what you are really made from? People like you, including lawyers, waitresses and accountants, have been entertaining the folks queuing up at Arlene’s grocery since 1996, and its been a wild ride.

Anyone can take the stage on either Monday or Friday nights to sing their best along with Arlene’s famous karaoke band. Take a chance, what’s the worst that can happen?

On the other hand, if you don’t see yourself has the next Elton John or Barbara Streisand, just take a seat and relax, and let other people’s talents (or lack thereof) wash over you. Guaranteed after a few reasonably priced drinks and some good natured laughs, you will have had yourself a memorable evening. You might even want to come back for more, or even get up there and belt it out with the best of them.

Arlene's Grocery is located at 95 Stanton St.; +1 212 358 1633

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Hidden Bars of New York


During the days of Prohibition it was illegal to buy and sell alcoholic beverages; but do you think that stopped anyone from actually drinking? Of course not; it just went underground. Those clandestine bars were known as “speakeasies,” and there are a few of them still around today. Yes, it is legal to get plastered nowadays, as long as you don’t drive afterwards or take off your clothes before you climb aboard a southbound bus, but the special charm of speakeasies has been preserved in a few not-so-well-known “joints.”

Window curtains create a “no-one-is-home” effect at 67 Orange Street, but don’t be fooled. Walk in and discover an intimate lounge with a full range of cocktails and fantastic food standing behind the drinks. Try the fried chicken or lobster, you won’t be disappointed.  2082 Frederick Douglas Blvd., Harlem

To get to this speakeasy you will have to enter a Japanese restaurant first. Then walk through a secret door which looks like the entrance to a storage closet, and discover Angel’s Share
Angel's Share Entrance. Photo by Amy Halverson
.  Only four people at a time can enter, so keep your party small. You will be rewarded for your effort with some imaginative mixed drinks and food made with the best ingredients. 8 Stuyvesant St., East Village

Another establishment boasting a secret door is Bathtub Gin. Enter a coffee shop, find the right door, and you will encounter a small cocktail bar furnished with leather booths and tables. Come on either Sunday or Tuesday night and you will be treated to a burlesque show guaranteed to make you feel lawless.  132 9th Ave., Chelsea

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

The Best Restaurant in NYC is Hiding in Bloomingdales


French Onion Soup Photo by Ralph Daily
I am about to reveal to you one of New York City’s best kept secrets, so don’t tell anyone, OK? Head on over to Bloomingdales, you know, the upper up-scale department store on the Upper East Side?

Take the elevator up to the sixth floor, and amaze yourself when you enter a French dining car from Paris, circa 1870s. It is hard to imagine a more romantic atmosphere in this tiny corner of bustling Manhattan.

OK, not everyone agrees that the food is quite as awesome as “the best restaurant in NYC” makes it sound, but combined with the unique ambiance, a visit to “Le Train Bleu” is certainly worth your time.

Here is a quote from one customer on Yelp!:

“How have I lived in NYC for 30 years and I never knew this restaurant existed? It is so cool. The food is from another era. It is classic standard traditional French bistro food. It isn't the best or the worst just average.
But the reason to eat here isn't the food but to eat in a train at the top of Bloomingdales. It is just so incredible. ”