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It's a Corona Virus Weekend NYC III

CoVid 19 Pandemic Continues to Keep Life in NYC & NYS on Hold

March 27, 2020 / NYC Social Issues / NYC Neighborhoods / News Analysis & Opinion / Gotham Buzz NYC.

corona virus nyc covid 19 nyc nysWeather. The Temperature highs will be in the high 60's Friday, dropping to 50 on Saturday and rising a bit to the mid 50's on Sunday. The temperature lows will be in the mid to high 40's all weekend. There is an 80% - 100% chance of a half inch of Rain on Saturday mid to late afternoon [3 - 5 pm] and a bit more than a half inch early Sunday morning [before 7 am]. Winds will be 5 - 10 mph all weekend. The Humidity will be rise from the mid 20% range Friday, to 60% Saturday and 80% Sunday. Click for NYC Weather.

MTA / Public Transit / Click here for the MTA Weekender.

Hi, this is a list of closings, which I'll organize Saturday, with an eye to working toward us getting moving again. I'll also be adding photos.

On Thursday MLB was to begin with Yankees playing Baltimore [away] and the Mets playing Washington [home].

Elmhurst Hospital became the epicenter of Queens, which is the epicenter of NYC, which is the epicenter of NYS, which is the epicenter of the U.S. I visited just as they had closed the testing tents, which ran from 6 am – 4 pm. I spoke to one of the healthcare professionals there inquiring as to whether there had been an overreaction to the spreading virus.

I was told that the virus was new, mutating, very contagious, and more lethal than the flu – so it should be taken seriously and managed in accordance with the general health risks it poses. Within the prior 24 hours thirteen people had died at the hospital.

corona virus nyc covid 19 nyc nysOn my home I stopped at a few small businesses I generally frequent. One had completely closed its doors for the past couple of days. Business had been softening, and I imagine staying open just wasn’t worth the effort and expense. Another had shortened his hours, as business there had also softened, but there was still something of a flow. And the third place I stopped told me they were thinking of closing for a while, until things started moving again, as there just wasn’t much / any business moving.

On the subway the number of people wearing masks over their faces had grown significantly. I also noticed, for the first time, that a number of people were also wearing plastic gloves. Not long from now, everyone will be wearing Hazmat suits.

Well, at least it was easy to get a seat, and even easy to maintain the social distancing.

NY Courts are open for essential business only.

When I returned home – back to my personal self quarantine station – I flipped on the tube to see so many people talking so much and saying so, so little. I turned it off. I find TV news people very annoying. They strike me as people who spend more time prepping their wardrobe and makeup, than prepping their shallow ‘happy news’ / I’m your fake friend reporting.

corona virus nyc covid 19 nyc nysSo what’s closed down and when will it open? On the transportation front there were a few announcements this week including Alternate Side Parking

The subway schedule during weekdays was reduced to weekend frequency, except during rush hour as ridership has plummeted.

And NYC is opening up a street in every borough where folks can walk around and stretch without worrying about traffic in a manner akin to the Summer Streets program in August. The streets are

Park Ave. etc.

The Archdiocese of NY is asking parishoners to celebrate mass at home until further notice.

The Bronx Zoo closed in order to protect the animals from catching CoVid 19 from us. The NY Botanical Garden was closed March 15th and will announce its reopening when the CoVid situation become more clear.

The NY Transit Museum is closed until further notice.

corona virus nyc covid 19 nyc nysThe Brooklyn Museum closed March 13th. It will open when the CoVid situation becomes more clear. They plan to use this time to undertake a thorough cleaning.

This is something everyone should be using this time to do.****

The Mayor had closed NYC Public schools effective March 15th until Monday, April 20th. The Governor had closed NYS public schools through March 30th and announced this week that the opening would be pushed back as necessary, and then extended the closure through Wednesday, April 15th.

CUNY / SUNY were closed for the semester back on March 18th, but announced March 12th. Mayor de Blasio had announced that the Apollo Theater in Harlem, Madison Square Garden in Manhattan and the Barclays Center in Brooklyn would close, as the Governor banned all gatherings of more than 500 people.

The Big East Conference cancelled the remainder of its tournament on March 12th.

Major League Baseball delayed the opening of its season twice. The current resumption of activity is scheduled for May 11th, but that – like most resumption dates – remains tentative.

On March 11th the NBA suspended their season, when a player tested positive for the Corona Virus. Resumption of play remains uncertain at this time.

corona virus nyc covid 19 nyc nysThe National Hockey League suspended play on March 12th. When play will resume remains uncertain, like for almost everyone. Their draft has also been postponed.

At the time of the announcement the CDC was recommending no events more than 50 people [knbr.com 3/16/20], but in NYC it went down to 10 people, before dropping to only members of the same household.

Lincoln Center will be closed until May 17, 2020, assuming it’s safe at that time to resume.

The American Museum of Natural History on the West Side announced it would close.

The Queens World Film Festival scheduled for March 19 – 29 moved the program to an online show.

The Tribeca Film Festival scheduled for April 15 – 26 was postponed.

Cleanliness needs to be noted.

The next event scheduled at the Javits Center, as of this report is June 4th – the Small Business Expo. The Auto Show has been re-scheduled at the Javits Center for August 18th – September 6th. There are two press days immediately preceding the show.

All three locations of the Metropolitan Museum, including the Met Breuer and the Met Cloisters and the Met Museum on the East Side will close indefinitely. The Met will make an announcement on its website as to when it will reopen. The Frick cancelled events through April 3rd and said it will monitor the situation before making any announcement to reopen.

corona virus nyc covid 19 nyc nysCarnegie Hall cancelled all events through May 10th, 2020. They will refund tickets between the announcement – around March 12th and May 10th – but ask folks to consider making a donation of the ticket price to the Carnegie.

The South Street Seaport Museum is closed effective March 13th until further notice.

At first the New York Public Library announced it would only be open to lend books., but by March 12th had announced it would be closed until March 31st. On March 20th the NYPL announced it would be closed indefinitely and the time period on books would be extended until after they had opened again.

Tax filing deadline for U.S. federal returns is july 15, 2020. NYS followed suit. But if you file on time, your tax refund will be remitted as normal. And you can use the extra time to contribute to your IRA if you have one. NYS sales tax filing is still required, but the fees and interest on late payments will be waived.

The Museum of the Moving Image in Astoria, Queens is closed at least through April 3rd, but based on other reports we’re seeing, that is likely to be extended.

corona virus nyc covid 19 nyc nysFlushing Town Hall and the Queens Museum are closed pending a more clear outlook on the Corona Virus.

No notices were posted on the Jamaica Center for Performing Arts and Jamaica Center for Arts & Leanring websites, but I suspect they too are closed pending a clearer picture of the CoVid 19 outbreak.

The National Lighthouse Museum on Staten Island is closed pending a more clear outlook on CoVid 19. The next event they have scheduled is May 20th for Fleet Week.

Effective March 20, Snug Harbor suspended all events at all sites at the center pending a more clear the outlook on CoVid 19.


CoVid - The Virus Everyone is Talking About

Ghost Town: One of Every 200 New Yorkers has been Tested

corona virus nyc covid 19 nyc nysMarch 23, 2020 / NYC Social Issues / NYC Neighborhoods / News Analysis & Opinion / Gotham Buzz NYC.

Last weekend I headed into Manhattan to take a few photos of what I expected to be a ghost town. While some folks were moving about - relative to normal activity - Manhattan seemed empty. With this report are a few of the photos. I'll include more of them in the upcoming weekend update.

I've also been fairly closely following Governor Cuomo's daily press briefing. The numbers, as mentioned in my last report, that I've been keeping a close eye on are the number of infections vis a vis the number of tests completed. The reason for this is that I have not yet heard anyone explain how they can truly ascertain the transmission rate, without being able to separate out the growth in the number of people who have tested positively, from the growth in the number of people they have tested.

 

NYC & NYS CoVid 19 Testing Metrics vs Infected Numbers

corona virus nyc covid 19 nyc nysSo I put together a chart, in which I had to make a few estimates using the data the Governor provided, as I had not captured all of it. Friday, March 20, 2020 is the starting point, where Cuomo reported 32,427 tests completed in NYS, of which 44% or 14,386 were completed in NYC. At that time there were 7102 and 4408 infected in NYS and NYC respectively, which means that 22% of those tested in NYS were infected, while 31% of those tested in NYC were infected.

In the briefing today, Tuesday, March 24, 2020 there were an estimated [my copy of Cuomo's NYS total number was unreadable] 94,289 tests completed in NYS, of which 41% or 38,390 were completed in NYC. At this time there were 25,665 infected in NYS, of which 14,904 of the infected were found in NYC. This translates to 27% of those tested in NYS being infected, while 39% of those tested in NYC were infected.

What does this mean? Actually since this virus is new, we don't really know for sure. What we do know is that about 26,000 people in NYS are infected, of which 15,000 of them live in NYC. And, according to Cuomo on Monday, the testing per capita in NYS is higher than anywhere else in the world including South Korea [see fact check correction below].

 

We're Coming up on the Two Week Anniversary of NYC's Behavior Change

corona virus nyc covid 19 nyc nysGovernor Cuomo declared a State of Emergency on March 7, 2020. Mayor de Blasio followed suit on Thursday, March 12, 2020. So we're right around two weeks away from when people first really started to change some of their habits [assume a couple / few days lag time between the declarations and people making changes].

At the time there was a run on supplies at grocery stores and pharmacies and toilet paper. But NYC's intrepid grocers and other critical retailers withstood the onslaught, and early this week I noticed that the emptied shelves were quickly being restocked. The photo at right shows the emptied shelves at a local grocery store in NYC.

The incubation period is about two weeks, so assuming those who are feeling the effects have been tested, then maybe the numbers will rise a bit more before descending as this allows lag time for the behavior change. By this time last week, people were seriously digging in, so perhaps by Sunday, March 29, 2020 [which is two weeks after the abrupt halt to normal life], we'll begin to see some impact from our collective response to the pandemic - show up in the number of infected - via a slowing of the newly infected.

corona virus nyc covid 19 nyc nysGovernor Cuomo didn't paint such a rosy scenario, as he believes the number of infected will grow nearly exponentially and that the epidemic will peak in two to three weeks.

The photo at right shows a number of grocery store and food delivery men working to restock the shelves of an NYC grocery early Monday morning.

Since declaring a State of Emergency Governor Cuomo first asked 50%, then 75% and eventually 100% of office personnel of non-essential services to work from home. This mandate was made between March 18 - 20, 2020 and essential services were defined as follows [copy & paste into your browser bar to go to NY.gov website page listing them],

https://esd.ny.gov/guidance-executive-order-2026?fbclid=IwAR2mh0PltvwXiLyMERva1N3EM-nh6vYYqCvlzBj0KsdZ24bTJoExAn93Imo

 

Are the Growing Numbers of Infected, Mostly a Matter of the Testing Catching up to the Reality?

South Korea tested 347,000 people out of a population of 51 million, which is a 0.7% testing rate. New York has tested 94,289 out of a population of 19.6 million or 0.5% testing rate. Cuomo claimed NYS had done more testing per capita than South Korea, so one of us is using incorrect information to make the calculation above as my numbers indicate that South Korea has done more per capita testing [the South Korea testing number is from NBC 3/17/20 and the South Korea population is from Wikipedia 2018].

corona virus nyc covid 19 nyc nysIn any case, the testing per capita for NYS, is very high vis a vis the rest of world. So it seems by the end of this week, we should begin to be able to obtain a measure of things. Governor Cuomo says the rate of infection is doubling every three days - but is it the rate of infection or is it that the testing is just catching up to what's already out there?

As of March 13th, there were only 11,000 tests that had been conducted in the entire United States of America, so we had a long way to go. In the photo at right Governor Cuomo shows a chart depicting the rising infected numbers, which have increased greatly since the Trump Administration CDC testing snafu was worked through about a week ago, thus enabling healthcare professionals to begin to test / measure how many people have been infected by CoVid 19.

 

Government & Media Focus on Facilities & Supplies

corona virus nyc covid 19 nyc nysA lot of the media coverage and government officials' focus has been on securing equipment for what they expect will be a wave of Corona Virus sick patients sweeping the healthcare system. Specifically they've been looking at beds, respirators, surgical masks and gowns, and trained staff to attend the patients.

One of the centers they're preparing is a 1,000 bed facility at the Jacob Javits Center in West Midtown. I went there on Monday to look things over at one of Governor Cuomo's press conferences. On the north end of the building there was a huge empty convention space, where there were already a good number of huge crates stacked, ostensibly with supplies needed to equip the facility into a medical treatment center - should that become necessary.

I spoke to a couple of people, one of whom who told me that there 100 National Guardsmen already there, and there were more on their way. And that the Javits Center could - if necessary - be converted into a 2,000 bed facility. I asked some of the other folks covering the conference whether they thought the Governor and Mayor were responding disproportionately to the virus. The reporters I questioned said no.

The photo at right shows the National Guardsmen at the Jacob Javits Center in West Midtown, with the supplies needed to equip the center as a hospital facility, should that become necessary to accommodate the growing numbers of infected from the Corona Virus.

 

Quarantine Most of Society or the 1% - 2% at Risk?

corona virus nyc covid 19 nyc nysGovernor Cuomo said that he had shut down the economy to save lives. But in thinking about things, I'm coming to question that judgment - allowing for the fact that it's easy to second guess people - and that hindsight is 20/20. My question is why are we quarantining everyone, when the real at risk people represent about 1% - 2% of the population? Shouldn't the 1% - 2% be quarantined - not all of us?

In the prior report we did, we looked at a report published in the Atlantic Magazine, which identified: 1) demographics as a contributor to Italy's high death rate [second oldest population on the planet, with youth living in or near them], and 2) the sudden spike in sickness overwhelmed their healthcare infrastructure, so many people weren't able to obtain the proper care.

So far 593 deaths and 46,805 cases of illness have been attributed to the Corona Virus in the United States. I couldn't track down when the first case was reported, but a graph on an NYT chart indicated it was February 26, 2020.

It's worth putting this in perspective. According to a March 19, 2020 Live Science report,

" ... In the U.S. alone, the flu has caused an estimated 36 million illnesses, 370,000 hospitalizations and 22,000 deaths this season, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) ... "

When seen in light of the flu, the Corona Virus doesn't seem as much a threat. But the broadcasters on the nightly TV news aren't so much journalists, as they are well groomed teleprompter readers. So none of them are asking the Governor the right questions, and perhaps Governor Cuomo and his staff aren't either.

 

Trump Tax Plan Plunders America's Youth ... Again

corona virus nyc covid 19 nyc nysOnce again the Trump Administration is poised to dig into the piggy bank of future generations of Americans by doling out another big tax brea - compliments of those who are too young to vote, or those who haven't yet been born.

It seems to me the Trump Administration could avoid the huge (multi-)trillion bailout by declaring a moratorium on all monthly bills for everyone - and then figure out on the back end, who needs to be subsidized because of the a disproportionate hit because of such a moratorium. In this manner young Americans' finances wouldn't be plundered to the tune of trillion(s) of dollars ... again.

We can't keep doing this to them. It's just not right to burden future generations with our debt.

In the photo Dr. Fauci, Head of the Corona Virus task force, is shown at far right - while the Donald is talking a blue streak about the Corona Virus. Look at the faces of the doctor and the other people in the photo.


It's a Corona Virus Weekend NYC II

Even more than Last Week, the Corona Virus Pandemic Shuts Down NYC

* March 20, 2020 / NYC Social Issues / NYC Neighborhoods / News Analysis & Opinion / Gotham Buzz NYC.

* Weather. The Temperature highs will be in the mid 70's on Friday, dropping to 50 on Saturday and the mid 40's by Sunday. The temperature lows will be in the mid 40's on Friday, dropping to the mid 30's Saturday, rising a bit to the high 30's on Sunday. There is a 40% chance of a minuscule amount of Rain on Friday afternoon, for which the peaking probability is at 5 pm. Then no rain for the rest of the weekend, but cloudy Saturday morning. Winds will be 10 - 15 mph all weekend. The Humidity will be around 70 on Friday dropping to the mid 40% range for the rest of the weekend. Click for NYC Weather.

* MTA / Public Transit / Click here for the MTA Weekender.

 

A Racist President Applies a Demagogue Label to CoVid

queens things to doUnfortunately we have a president, who oftentimes makes situations worse, because of his ignorant and childish behavior. The Donald seems to be trying to label the Corona Virus the China virus and quite frankly, is doing more to confirm some of the labels given to him - like he's a racist - than convincing anyone other than his Fox 'News' toadies - to go along with his not-helpful-in-addressing-the-CoVid-crisis ploy.

It seems that our babyman president, won't even act like an adult, even in the midst of what appears to be the world's worst pandemic in this millenia.

A demagogue is

"a political leader who seeks support by appealing to the desires and prejudices of ordinary people rather than by using rational argument."

 

MTA Sanitizes Subway Cars and Buses

queens things to doThe NYC MTA moves between four and six million people daily. That's a mind boggling figure when you think about it. But last week ridership began falling significantly. And by this week, about a million or more people, had found some other way to get around, or were staying home. Thus the MTA is seeking federal funding to the tune of about $4 billion to help it shore up the lost revenue. And the ridership reductions are expected to continue for a while.

The MTA stepped up its cleaning regimen effective March 3, 2020. It now santizes its subway cars and buses on a rotating schedule every three days. Have the subways ever been so clean? In spite of the effort folks are still encouraged to practice social distancing meaning keeping six feet apart from others when possible. Anyone who is ill is asked to stay home.

The photo above right shows a placard on the subway, artistically depicting the diversity of our city. We live at the crossroads of the world, which means we are both the beneficiaries of that intellectual and cultural diversity, but also carry risks which are associated with that openess, because of our societal exposure. Like everything in life, we must strive to find the right balance of cultivating our openess, while managing and minimizing the associative risks. Data, science, education and discipline can help us strike the right balance.

 

NYS Steps Up Corona Virus Testing - Now Leads Nation

Governor Cuomo informed us that effective today that NYS had conducted more tests per capita than South Korea, who had been the world leader. Since NYS stepped up its Corona Virus testing, it found that 23 MTA employees had contracted CoVid. They were sent home or to appropriate healthcare facilities. The report indicated that they weren't train operators.

In addition to the mass transit workers, 20 members of the NYPD, 14 members of the NYFD and seven members of the NYC Sanitation Department tested positive. To put things in context, the NY Police Department has a workforce of over 38,000, the NY Fire Department has a workforce of about 17,000, the NY Sanitation Department has a workforce of 9,000 and the MTA has a workforce of over 50,000. So the number of cases testing positive vis a vis the total are miniscule.

NYS has tested over 32,000 people, of which 7,102 tested positive, and 35 people had died. About 10,000 of those tests were done within the past day, of which 3,000 people tested positive. Prior to that 22,000 tests had been conducted and 4,000 people tested positive. So the positive test rate rose from 18% for what was essentially the first week to 30% in the past day.

These testing numbers and percents are going to be the numbers to watch.

As such Governor Cuomo is asking non-essential workers to stay home. To that end he asked offices to reduce their in office workforces by 75% by having them work from home. See details at,

https://www.governor.ny.gov/

 

Trump Administration MisManagement of Preventative Health

The Corona Virus pandemic is what one pundit called,

"The first crisis not actually caused by Donald Trump himself."

Unfortunately that statement isn't entirely true. Trump reportedly has tried to cut the Center for Disease Control [CDC] budgets every year he's been in office. But Congress has kept reinstating the cuts and has even added funding to the CDC. So while Trump has tried to make cuts, he actually signed off on increases.

FYI - NEED TO DO MORE WORK / ADD DETAIL TO THIS PARAGRAPH. The real damage done by the Trump Administration has been through other actions. Cuts UN budget for disease control. Fires head of pandemic response unit in National Security. Bungles CoVid tests rollout by CDC. Calls CoVid a hoax in alignment with propagandists on Fox Fake News. And keeps making factually incorrect statements. I'll have details including a link to video later today.

 

Italy Surpasses China - Italian Death Toll More than 3,400

I believe one of the metrics Governor Cuomo is watching, is what's happening in Italy where they had over 41,000 cases of the Corona Virus, for which 3,400 died. Part of the problem is that the rapid surge in the spread of the virus overwhelmed the healthcare infrastructure in terms of beds and respirators.

Wired Magazine posted a story on what factors caused the Italian scourge in a March 17, 2020 report. In it they cited the following,

"... The reason why Italy is suffering so badly, write University of Oxford researchers in a new paper in the journal Demographic Science, may be twofold: The country has the second-oldest population on earth, and its young tend to mingle more often with the elderly, like their grandparents..."

We have been fortunate enough to be behind Italy, so that we may learn from them. To that end the term 'social distancing' has caught on like wildfire - not just in conversation - but in action.

This is in part why I'm somewhat optimistic we're going to avoid some of the doomsday scenarios discussed on TV and online.

 

When Will this End?

The forecasts for us getting back to a normal life vary widely. Some say two weeks, which is unlikely, some say three to five weeks, which I think is a fair guess at a time frame for which folks begin resuming some level of normalcy. But the truth is that normal as we knew it, might not return for a far longer time.

In spite of what our dishonest president says, nobody is going to agree to giving millions of Americans vaccines that haven't first been tested. If there's something wrong with it, it would only make things even worse. So a vaccine is likely a year or more away.

And diseases of this nature somehow seem to keep coming back - like the recent Ebola resurgence in December of 2019. So we're heading into a new normal of greater cleanliness, more social distancing, and paying attention to the spread of germs. Back in the 1950's and 1960's people were concerned about germs, because they were aware of the health implications of not keeping germs at bay through cleanliness. But over time, with the passing of generations, came the passing of concern for germs, because germs had been beaten back in this country through cleanliness. But as the cleanliness habits abated, the germs were given more of an opportunity to come back, which is where we are today.

So I think the new normal is just beginning. But like everything, once you make the adjustment, the maintenance of it can be done in stride. Have a relaxing weekend and stay healthy.


Democrats Choice: A Stuttering Biden or An Intransigent Bernie?

Most Folks Don't Know that Biden has a Stuttering Handicap which is Why he doesn't do so Well in Debates & his 'Circumlocution' Remedy is Likely the Primary Cause of his Verbal Gaffes

Most Sanders Supporters Probably Haven't Taken a Look at Sanders' Record of Accomplishment which During his 29 Years in Congress is Comprised of his Leadership on Only Three Passed Senate Bills - Two of Which were Naming Post Offices

job biden stutters joe biden stutterer bernie sanders legislative records bernie sanders intransigenceMarch 9, 2020 / NYC Neighborhoods / National Politics & Government / News Analysis & Opinion / Gotham Buzz NYC.

 

This past week, as we all watched the Democratic race for the presidency unfold, we witnessed a bit of history. Former Vice President Joe Biden’s incredible comeback from what seemed like a campaign on life support, ended with him sweeping the south and decisively winning victories in most of the states up for grabs on Super Tuesday.

 

Biden’s Coalition – The Moderates, The Working Class & The Realists

But like all victories, Biden didn’t do it alone. Biden first received a boost via the endorsement of Congressman James Clyburn only days before the South Carolina primary. On Monday, Amy Klobuchar ended her campaign and endorsed Biden, followed shortly that same day by Pete Buttigieg, who had ended his campaign a day earlier. And Beto O’Rourke reappeared, to throw his support behind Biden in Texas.

job biden stutters joe biden stutterer bernie sanders legislative records bernie sanders intransigenceAs a result, Biden became the front runner, eclipsing Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders following Biden’s electoral sweep on Super Tuesday.

One might say that this demonstrates the biggest difference between Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders. Joe has been able to bring many of his former challengers into his tent, while Bernie Sanders has not.

Don’t get me wrong. I like Bernie Sanders. I think he has great integrity, he is a strong advocate for the working class, and he has clearly demonstrated that he has an admirable talent for running an organization during his two presidential bids.

But the difference between Sanders and Biden is that Sanders appears to be a purest … an ideologue … someone who does not compromise. And people who don't compromise can make great thought leaders, but they rarely - if ever - make great leaders.

 

Great Leaders Know How To Compromise & That’s How They Get Things Done

Leaders need to make compromises in order to get things done. They generally don’t get everything they want because vested interests will do everything in their power to thwart them when they try. So what real leaders do, is stake out the next evolution, by moving the ball a bit forward, hoping that someone else will pick it up at a later date and move it forward again.

  • CLICK here to read the rest of our report on Joe Biden is a Stutterer & Bernie Sanders Legislative Record. The report includes: 1) a synopsis of an Atlantic report whereby a journalist who has a stutter followed Biden on the campaign trail and shared his insights with us, 2) a look at Sanders legislative record by another reporter writing in the Washington Post, and 3) a Case Study in leadership regarding moving the nation forward through compromise.

Bronx Things To Do This Weekend

This Weekend Some Events Cancelled & Some Institutions Closing Doors for a Couple of Weeks due to the Corona Virus Pandemic

bronx things to do bronxMarch 13, 2020 / Things To Do Bronx / Bronx Neighborhoods / Bronx Buzz NYC.

Weather. The Temperature highs will be in the high 60's on Friday, dropping to the high 50's on Saturday and low 50's by Sunday. The temperature lows will be around 40 on Friday & Saturday, dropping to the low 30's by Sunday. Rain is in the forecast for Friday ONLY, likely gone by 11 am. It will be cloudy later in the day on Saturday only. Winds will be 15 mph on Friday, dropping to between 5 - 10 mph for the rest of the weekend. The Humidity will be around 70 on Friday dropping to about 40% for the rest of the weekend. Click for Bronx Weather.

MTA / Public Transit / Click here for the MTA Weekender.

The photo at right shows some folks riding the subway this week who've taken the precaution of wearing surgical masks to prevent getting infected by the Corona Virus - see details below.

 

Corona Virus - A Brief History of Growing Awareness

The Corona Virus outbreak was first reported by the World Health Organization on December 31, 2019 in Wuhan in China.

By January 30, 2020 the World Health Organization declared the Corona Virus a Public Health Emergency of International Concern.

On Saturday, March 7, 2020 Governor Cuomo called a NYS State of Emergency in an effort to get out ahead of what at the time was the Corona Virus epidemic, as there was a rapid spike in the number of reported cases in NYS. At the time NYC had reported about a dozen known cases.

On March 10, 2020 Governor Cuomo ordered a quarantine of a neighborhood in New Rochelle.

On March 11, 2020, Mayor de Blasio followed suit, and declared NYC in a State of Emergency in an effort to get out ahead of what was called a pandemic by the World Health Organization on the same day.

And today, March 13, 2020, last but not least, Donald Trump declared a State of Emergency in the United States in order to accelerate the nation's slow response to the evolving public health crisis.

 

Corona Virus Precautions - Cleanliness is Next to Godliness

By now you'd have to be blind, deaf and mute not to have heard that you should thoroughly wash your hands and not touch your face without having cleaned your hands.

In a March 11, 2020 report, the Sacramento Bee, which is a well respected news outlet run by McClatchy Newspapers, informed us that the National Institute of Health conducted a study that shows that the Corona Virus can remain alive for up to three days on some surfaces under the right conditions.

As such you should also step up your cleaning practices, specifically with respect to things and places that you touch regularly - like the TV clicker or your mouse and keypad and cell phone and keys.

 

Corona Virus Transmission by Air

And that same National Institute of Health Study also showed that the virus could remain alive in the air for a few hours. This discharge would have to come from an infected person, most likely with a cough, but I reckon just talking and breathing could do it too.

This is why scientists recommend we keep some distance - some six feet - from one another. Especially people coughing and that is why ill people are advised to remain home until they feel better - so that they don't infect the rest of us. But that said, infected people may take between two and fourteen days to show signs of the illness and thus realize it. The median incubation period for the Corona Virus is five days, 98% of the people who contract it show signs by 12 days, so by 14 days it is believed that those who have contracted the Corona Virus will show it. This is why most places have been shuttered for two weeks at a minimum.*

Some say masks won't necessarily prevent infection, because the masks aren't built to filter out the micro organisms one might inhale and the masks are not tightly fastened to the face. They may be correct, but the masks can't hurt and may reduce what you breathe in. There's a secondary problem with the masks in that some folks have been hoarding them, making it more difficult for health professionals who are working on the front line of this crisis, to obtain them.*

The disease is believed to be highly transmittable, with conflicting reports on whether it is more or less transmittable than the flu. Live Science, states that it's more than two times more transmittable than the flu, while another source says it's not as transmittable as the flu. This discrepancy may be due to the fact that there are two strains.*

 

The Corona Virus is Potentially Lethal - but Skews Older

bronx things to do bronxAt present, it is estimated to have a 2.3% death rate versus something like a 0.1% death rate for the flu. So that means it's over 20 times more lethal than the flu, and at present without any existing cure nor vaccine. Which is why there's so much concern.

But that said, to put this in context, a March 7, 2020 Live Science report informs us that,

" ... So far, the new coronavirus has led to more than 100,000 illnesses and more than 3,000 deaths worldwide. But that's nothing compared with the flu, also called influenza. In the U.S. alone, the flu has caused an estimated 34 million illnesses, 350,000 hospitalizations and 20,000 deaths this season, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) ... "

According to the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention statistics show that the risk for people varies according to age, as it is believed people who are ill, have pre-existing conditions or compromised immune systems are most likely to die from the disease - see chart at right.

 

Living Your Life in the Age of the Corona Virus

So, as part of the NYS State of Emergency both the Governor and the Mayor are in agreement that all events of 500 or more people are presently banned. Governor Cuomo also issued an order to close CUNY and SUNY effective March 18, 2020 for the rest of the semester.

The Mayor and Governor have decided to keep the primary and secondary public school system open, but advise anyone who is not feeling well to stay home. While tests reportedly show that children can contract the disease as easily as adults, you can see by the chart above, that children don't die from it at anywhere near the same rate as older people. I know - not dying from a disease - isn't exactly comforting.

But, unlike better resourced students attending private institutions, the students attending public school aren't as able to 'go remote' and conduct classes and homework electronically. Another part of this equation is that many of these students' parents aren't in a position to stay home with them [the collateral damage being having 1.1 million school age children, many unsupervised, roaming around NYC during a pandemic], and many of their parents are critical to the healthcare, educational, law enforcement, fire and emergency response and transportation infrastructure. Lastly many public school kids don't have a home, and the public school lunch program is the one place where they can obtain a healthy meal.*

I've provided the above information to help folks better understand the complexiities the Governor and Mayor are dealing with in making these decisions. And this doesn't include how badly the small business entities are getting hit, which closing things only makes worse. This affects them paying the rent, paying their employees - all of whom have to make ends meet ... somehow.

 

Things to Do This Weekend in the Bronx?

Not much really. Here's a link to the things to do in the Bronx last weekend, which contains a number of web addresses, should you want to look for yourself, but most institutions are taking the position of exercising an abundance of caution and thus have closed.

 

Bronx Things To Do, Farmers Mkts & Street Fairs

March 2020 - Click here for reports about Bronx holiday events & markets and Bronx farmers markets, Bronx things to do and Bronx street fairs.

Click here for free summer movies in the Bronx, free summer theater in the Bronx and free summer concerts in the Bronx. Click for details of New Years parties in the Bronx or here for Bronx shopping venues and restaurants in the Bronx.

Also see Friday & Weekend Events above.

 

MOSTLY DONE. ASTERISKED events above have NOT been updated.

* On Tuesday, March 3rd, from 6.30 - 8 pm there's a Book Club at the Bronx Art Space at 305 East 140th Street #1 in the Concourse neighborhood of the Bronx. The book being discussed is A Lucky Man by Jamel Brinkley. The event is hosted by One Book One Bronx which

"... seeks to resuscitate the beauty of reading, restore the intimacy of books and culture, and create a space that mines the cultural narratives of Bronx neighborhoods ..."

That seems as ambitious as it is laudable [free / literature / www.bronxartspace.com].


Bronx Irish Pubs Bars Restaurants in Woodlawn Heights near Yonkers | bronx irish pubs woodlawn heights bronx irish restaurants bronx irish pubs bars restaurants near Yonkers st patricks day parade bronx nyc usa
Bronx Irish Pubs Bars Restaurants in Woodlawn Heights near Yonkers

Bronx Little Ireland in Woodlawn Heights

A Visit to Woodlawn Heights is a bit like a Trip to Ireland

March 10, 2020 / Things To Do Bronx / Central Bronx Neighborhoods NYC / Bronx Buzz NYC.

In preparation for St. Patrick's Day, I took a long ride north on the #2 subway line to 233rd Street in Wakefield. I then headed west on 233rd Street down a long hill, over the Bronx River Parkway, and into Woodlawn Heights. Woodlawn Heights is nestled in north of Woodlawn Cemetery and east and south of Van Cortlandt Park and it's also south of and adjacent to Yonkers and west of Wakefield.

As I entered the Woodlawn Heights neighborhood, walking north along Katonah Avenue, I felt a bit as if I'd been whisked away to Ireland. Of course there were Irish bars and pubs that lined the street, but there was also an Irish grocery store. And I imagine if I had more time to spend, I'd find other related gems. But today I was on a mission to scout out a few Irish pubs in anticipation of the Yonkers St. Patrick's Day Parade which happens a week from Saturday on March 21st. Be advised there are two other Bronx St Patricks Day Parades this Sunday, March 15th in Throgs Neck and in Eastchester the details of which you'll find by clicking the link above - along with suggestions for Bronx Irish pubs and restaurants.

It was a quiet Sunday night and the neighborhood was fairly quiet as most are wont to be on a Sunday night. I started my journey by stopping at John Mulligan's Fireside Pub. And lo and behold it wasn't long before standing in front of me was John Mulligan himself.



Bronx St Patricks Day Bars, Irish Pubs & Restaurants in the Bronx NYC | nyc bronx st pats day bars irish pubs restaurants bronx nyc st pats day throgs neck city island morris park mott haven norwood kingsbridge fieldston van courtlandt bronx irish pubs restaurants bars bronx irish restaurants bronx nyc
Bronx St Patricks Day Bars, Irish Pubs & Restaurants in the Bronx NYC

St Pat's Day Bars & Irish Pubs & Restaurants in the Bronx

Bronx St Pat's Day Pubs, Irish Bars & Restaurants On St. Patrick's Day in the Bronx Neighborhoods of Throgs Neck, Kingsbridge, Fieldston, Bedford Park, Mott Haven, Norwood, Woodlawn Heights, Westchester Square [near Morris Park], Middleton Pelham Bay [near City Island], Williamsbridge and one in Yonkers

February 25, 2020 / Bronx Neighborhoods NYC / Bronx Restaurants NYC / St Patricks Day Parade Throgs Neck Bronx / Bronx Buzz NYC.

St. Patrick's Day is upon us once again and it's time for one and all, regardless of genetic history, to don their green clothing and head out to the Irish bars for a pint of ale or to the Irish restaurants for some down home Irish fare ... or something like that.

This report is about some of the Bronx Irish bars and restaurants that have survived the test of time, and likely a might bit ... more. The Irish pubs include Irish bars and restaurants from Throgs Neck, Kingsbridge, Fieldston, Bedford Park, Morris Park, Mott Haven, Norwood, Woodlawn Heights, Westchester Square, Middleton Pelham Bay [near City Island], Williamsbridge and one in Yonkers.



Bronx Things To Do Presidents Day Weekend - Events Bronx NYC | things to do presidents day weekend bronx nyc things to do mott haven concourse fordham belmont van cortlandt park riverdale bedford park melrose hunts point parkchester westchester square schuyler throgs neck bronx presidents day weekend events bronx nyc
Bronx Things To Do Presidents Day Weekend - Events Bronx NYC

Presidents Day Weekend Things to do in the Bronx NYC

Things To Do in the Bronx over the Presidents Day Weekend

February 10, 2020 / Things To Do Bronx NYC / Bronx Buzz NYC.

Presidents Day Weekend Weather. The Temperature highs will be in the mid 30's on Friday, dropping to the high 20's on Saturday and rising into the 40's on Sunday and Monday. The temperature lows will be in the low teens Friday, the mid 20's on Saturday, rising into the 30's Sunday and Monday. Precipitation - There's a small chance [30%] of a small amount of precipitation [way under an inch] later Sunday and early morning Monday. Winds will be around 15 mph Friday, dropping into the single digits for the rest of the long weekend. The Humidity will be in the high 30% range on Friday & Saturday, rising to about 60% on Sunday and Monday. Click for Bronx Weather.

The image at right shows Wave Hill, where President Theodore Roosevelt spent a couple of summers. Wave Hill is a horticultural enclave and Teddy Roosevelt was an American Conservationist. I imagine if alive today, Roosevelt would certainly being doing whatever he could to combat climate change.

Presidents Day is a time to reflect on the performance of our current presidents and legislators, and how they stack up against their historical peers. And in that reflection it's worth asking ourselves what we've done to contribute or detract from the national conversation.

Brief History of Presidents Day Holiday in NYC

bronx things to do presidents day weekend bronx presidents day weekend events bronx nycA day commemorating Lincoln's birthday was first passed in Buffalo, New York in the early 1870's. Presidents Day originated as Washington's Birthday which was a holiday narrowly prescribed for federal government offices in Washington, D.C. in 1879. The holiday was dedicated to honoring the memory of the first American president, George Washington who was born on February 22, 1732.

In 1885 the holiday was expanded to include all federal government offices around the nation. In 1951 there was a push to create a Presidents Day holiday [vs a George Washington's birthday holiday] to include President Lincoln whose birthday is February 12, 1809 and was also celebrated by localities, but it didn't pass.

In 1971 the holiday was moved off of George Washington's birth date to being the third Monday in February. Thus while it never falls upon Washington's birthday 2/22, the official name of the holiday remains Washington's Birthday. But today, most folks refer to it as Presidents Day and to recognize the presidents who honored the U.S. Constitution and served the interests of the people.



Bronx Valentines Day Restaurants - Bronx Romantic Restaurants Bronx NYC | bronx valentines day restaurants bronx valentines dinners mott haven valentines day bronx fordham university heights valentines day riverdale valentines restaurants city island concourse belmont morris park parkchester bedford park melrose throgs neck valentines day restaurants bronx nyc
Bronx Valentines Day Restaurants - Bronx Romantic Restaurants Bronx NYC

Bronx Valentines Day Restaurants - Bronx NYC

Valentines Day / Romantic Restaurants in or near Mott Haven, Fordham, Port Morris, Concourse, Bedford Park, Norwood, University Heights, City Island, Riverdale, Melrose, Morris Park, Westchester Square & Parkchester Bronx NYC

February 5, 2020 / Bronx Neighborhoods / Bronx Restaurants / Bronx Buzz NYC.

Valentine's Day is less than two weeks away. It's a good time to let your loved one know you care. Flowers, gifts and dinner are always welcome treats, and / or some thoughtful gesture that shows that the lady [or man] you're with, still means a lot to you.

It's generally hard to make restaurant reservations on short notice at a romantic Bronx restaurant on Valentine's Day, and sometimes it's difficult to make them for the weekend preceding Valentine's Day. So if you're thinking about doing something this Valentine's Day for dinner in or around the Mott Haven, Fordham, Port Morris, Concourse, Bedford Park, Norwood, University Heights, City Island, Riverdale, Melrose, Morris Park, Westchester Square & Parkchester neighborhoods; it's best to do your research early, and call a week or at least a few days ahead to make the reservations.

Valentine's Day History - Romantic Restaurants in the Bronx

The origins of Valentine's Day are not well documented. It's believed to have been named after Saint Valentine who was apparently a Catholic martyr who died over 1500 years ago. Today the holiday is not associated with religion so much as flowers, candies, cards and romantic dinners. And the holiday spokesperson is now Cupid, a Roman god of desire, and quite a mischief maker.

Click this link to view a brief guide of Valentine's Day restaurants in the Bronx / romantic restaurants Bronx NYC where you will find short descriptions or links to Bronx restaurants we've visited in the past or have reviewed. The restaurants we've reviewed include a mix of high, medium and budget priced restaurants that are spread throughout the borough and offer a large variety of ethnic cuisines. Enjoy.



Closure of Rikers Island Moves Another Step Forward

In Oct 2019 NYC Council Designated Neighborhood Jail Locations in Four Boroughs

Community Board One in Astoria Only Approved the Closure of Rikers Island

rikers island closing rikers island correctional facility history rikers island development astoria queens rikers island hunts point bronxJanuary 26, 2020 / Bronx Neighborhoods / Queens Neighborhoods / Queens Politics / Bronx Politics & Government / Queens Buzz NYC & Bronx Buzz NYC.

A week ago, on Tuesday, January 21st I attended the Community Board One meeting at the Astoria World Manor where the board was asked to approve the closing of the Rikers Island Detention Facility effective sometime before the end of the year 2026.

The photo at right was taken from an airplane while landing at LaGuardia in a prior year. Rikers Island Correctional Facility is a stone's throw away from LGA.

 

Queens Community Board One in Astoria Votes on Rikers Closure

The presentation consisted of two slides. One highlighted the social / moral blight that Rikers Island had become. The second slide simply proposed the request in very limited terms - the closing of Rikers Island and the conversion of it to a ‘public place’. The presentation to the Committee was done by a team lead by Dana Kaplan, Deputy Director of the NYC Mayor's Office of Criminal Justice.

So please note that the Community Board had no role in the placement of neighborhood jails, nor did they sign off on anything that may become of Rikers Island going forward. They only approved the closing of the Correctional Facility and the allowance of use for it as a "public place".

I spoke with CB1 District Manager Florence Kolouris after the meeting about what exactly that meant. She told me that there isn’t any definition, per se, given for public place – but a couple of examples of prior public places include Lincoln Center, Fort Totten and Queens Borough Hall.

The Community Board approved the measure with a recommendation that CB1 be kept in the loop throughout the closing process, including any demolition. Plenty of questions followed regarding what would become of the 400 acre island. Nothing concrete was proposed at this time, but the audience was assured that any changes would have to come through the Community Board via the ULURP process [Uniform Land Use Review Procedure].

 

The Bronx & Queens - Rikers Island Community Jurisdiction & Prison Population

rikers island closing rikers island correctional facility history rikers island development astoria queens rikers island hunts point bronxIt’s worth noting that technically Rikers Island is a part of the Bronx – not Queens – even though the only road traveling onto the island originates in the Astoria / East Elmhurst neighborhoods of Queens. In addition to Queens Community Board One, Bronx Community Board Two, representing the Hunts Point neighborhood, also has influence over the island. Since the Dinkins Administration in the 1990's, there's been a floating barge facility that's docked in Hunts Point, that is considered a part of the Rikers Island Correctional Facility.

Currently there are an estimated 7,000 plus inmates on Rikers Island. At its height, in 1991, Rikers Island held an estimated overcapacity inmate population of nearly 22,000. By the time the facility is to be closed in 2026, the inmate population is expected to have declined to between 3,000 and 4,000.

The photo at right shows the Rikers Island Correctional Facility which will be closed by the end of 2026.


Bronx Little Italy Neighborhood & Arthur Avenue in Belmont Bx | bronx little italy bx arthur avenue bronx italian neighborhoods bronx shops restaurants arthur avenue bx
Bronx Little Italy Neighborhood & Arthur Avenue in Belmont Bx

Bronx Little Italy, Savor the Flavor

Bronx Little Italy Still Has Some Old World Charm

January 21, 2020 / Belmont Neighborhood Bx / Bronx Shopping NYC / Bronx Restaurants NYC / Bronx Buzz NYC.

The past couple of years I've had the opportunity to spend some time in Bronx Little Italy which is located in the Belmont neighborhood in the central Bronx. The neighborhood is just south of Fordham University and the New York Botanical Gardens and just west of the Bronx Zoo, so it's well positioned to accommodate visitors to these attractive destinations. But most of the traffic in Bronx Little Italy still comes from within the neighborhood itself, the surrounding Bronx neighborhoods, and from the greater NYC metro area neighborhoods, into which the descendants of Belmont Bronx Italian families had moved.

The heart of Bronx Little Italy runs along Arthur Avenue south of East Fordham Road / 189th Street to East 184th and Crescent Road. It also expands a bit east and west, along 187th and Crescent Road, but the epicenter is along Arthur Avenue. Arthur Avenue was named after Chester Arthur who was the 21st President of the United States [1881 - 1885].

 

Brief History of Little Italy in the Bronx

bronx little italy bronx arthur avenue belmont bx bronx little italy shops shopping restaurants dining bx little italyThe Belmont section of the Bronx was once owned by the Lorillard family, who were wealthy tobacconists in the 1800's. Some of their cigarette brands included Salem, Kook and Winston, which were among the top selling cigarettes, back when it was fashionable to ingest cancer causing agents in such a manner. They named the area Belmont, which means beautiful mountain, as the neighborhood is comprised of hilly areas. In the late 1800's, as the Gilded Age ended, the Lorillard estate was broken into segments and sold off by the heirs.

According to Wikipedia the first wave of Italian immigrants starting coming to America following the unification of Italy in 1861 and ran for the latter part of that century. The second wave of Italian immigrants came between the turn of the 20th century [1900] and ending around the time of the beginning of WWII [1938 - 1940]. Many Italians flocked to the Bronx, and Arthur Avenue in the Bronx became a center of Italian food and culture. And it's been that way ever since.

One of the main attractions on Arthur Avenue is the Arthur Avenue retail market, which was founded in part by NYC Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia. LaGuardia was of Italian and Jewish descent and a reformer, who promoted the market as a means of moving street vendors off the street and inside, as outside vending was somewhat unsanitary and believed to be a health issue.



Bronx Things To Do Martin Luther King Day Weekend - Events Bronx NYC | things to do martin luther king day weekend bronx nyc things to do mott haven concourse fordham belmont van cortlandt park riverdale bedford park melrose hunts point parkchester westchester square schuyler throgs neck bronx MLK day weekend bronx nyc
Bronx Things To Do Martin Luther King Day Weekend - Events Bronx NYC

MLK Day Weekend Events in the Bronx NYC

Things To Do in the Bronx over the Martin Luther King Day Weekend

January 14, 2020 / Things To Do Bronx NYC / Bronx Buzz NYC.

Weather. The Temperature highs will range between 30 and 40 throughout the three day weekend. The temperature lows will be in the low 20's throughout the weekend - except on Saturday when the low will be in the high 30's. Rain or Snow is forecast on Saturday, but NOT on Friday, Sunday & Monday. Winds will range from 10 - 15 mph all weekend. The Humidity will be around 50% throughout the weekend, except on Friday when it will be in the low 30% range. Click for Bronx Weather.

Click here for Bronx Buzz - things to do Martin Luther King Day Weekend in the Bronx.

Brief History of Martin Luther King Holiday in NYC

Martin Luther King, Jr. was a Baptist Minister who became the leading voice for African Americans' non-violent civil rights movement beginning in the mid 1950's through to his assassination in 1968. In 1983, the third Monday of every year was set aside to honor Martin Luther King for his service to the nation. The third Monday was chosen, as it was the nearest Monday to the anniversary of King's birthday, which was January 15, 1929.

Martin Luther King Day has grown to take on an even larger meaning, as it is oftentimes referred to as a day on, versus a day off. Organizations around the city and nation have used the day to call people into action to address the needs of the community through volunteering and service.

Martin Luther King Holiday Special Events in the Bronx NYC

On Saturday from 10 am - 4 pm the Food Bank of NYC is organizing an event entitled Done in a Day from 10 am - 4 pm at 355 Food Center Drive in the Hunts Point neighbohood of the Bronx. The program attracts volunteers who will give some of their time for the Food Bank projects.

On Sunday from 4.30 - 7 pm the New Life Rehobeth Church at 1375 Mace Avenue in the Bronx is hosting a movie with dessert for the whole family and it's free.

On Monday there's an MLK Day of Service from 9 am - 4 pm at the Riverdale Y at 5626 Arlington Avenue in the Riverdale neighborhood of the Bronx. The day of service attempts to tackle various social and community problems.

On Monday from 10 am - 2 pm the East Bronx IPC [Episcopalian / Anglican] invites folks to attend their MLK Day of service and social gathering at 781 Castle Hill Avenue in the Bronx. They collect donations for scholarships, some of which I believe are awarded on that day [unconfirmed].

On Monday, January 20, 2020, there's a Community Interfaith Service at Trinity Baptist Church to commemorate the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. at 808 East 224th Street between Barnes & Bronxwood Avenues beginning at 10 am. All are welcome but please rsvp at 718.590.3989 or email smalave@bronxbp.nyc.gov. Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. is expected to be in attendance.


Things To Do MLK Day Weekend in the Bronx NYC

Things To Do in the Bronx Over The Martin Luther King Day Weekend

January 20, 2019 / Things To Do in the Bronx / Bronx Buzz NYC.

bronx things to do MLK day weekend bronx martin luther king day weekend nyc

Bronx Museums & Cultural Institutions - Things To Do over the Martin Luther King Holiday Weekend

Bronx is home to two great institutions borne in pursuit of preservation and understanding the natural world around us - the New York Botanical Gardens and the Bronx Zoo. A segment of the Enid A. Haupt Observatory at the NY Botanical Gardens is shown in the photo at right.

The Bronx Zoo is located at at 2300 Southern Blvd near the Belmont, Fordham Manor, West Farms, Pelham Parkway and Allerton neighborhoods of the Bronx.

The New York Botanical Gardens is located at at 2900 Southern Blvd near the Norwood, Fordham, Belmont and Allerton neighborhoods of the Bronx.

Bronx Historical Sites / Bronx History - Things To Do over the Martin Luther King Day Weekend

The Bronx have a number of historical sites which are open to the public on weekends, and sometimes weekdays. The Bronx Historical Society is located in the Valentine-Varian house at 3309 Bainbridge Avenue at 208th Street in the Norwood neighborhood of the Bronx. The Valentine-Varian house is the oldest remaining farmhouse in the borough and second oldest house, dating back to 1758. The Bronx Historical Society hosts a number of exhibits as well as an array of programs throughout the year.

There's also the Van Cortlandt House in Van Cortland Park, which is a beautiful colonial home of one of the Dutch settlers. It was built in 1748 and is the oldest house in the Bronx borough. It is located at Broadway and West 246th Street in Van Cortlandt Park in the Bronx at the end of the #1 subway line.

The Bartow Pell Mansion is also worthy of a visit. It was erected in 1836 and is a Greek revival architecture style home - one of the last of that area / era. The Bartow Pell Mansion Museum is pretty active in its programming which includes cultural and historical. It is located at 895 Shore Road, across from the golf course in Pelham Bay Park.

And there's Wave Hill in Riverdale. It's the site of beautiful gardens overlooking the Hudson River. They offer regular programming including concerts, garden walks in the better weather and talks. It is located at 649 West 249th Street in the Hudson Hill section of the Riverdale neighborhood of the Bronx.




Michael Bloomberg's Real Record as NYC Mayor

This Contains the Part of Bloomberg's Record You Won't See in His Ad Campaign

michael bloombergs record as nyc mayor mike bloomberg accomplishments mike bloomberg record mayor nyc record of mayor bloomberg while mayor nycDecember 16, 2019 / NYC Neighborhoods / NYC Politics & Government / News Analysis & Opinion / Gotham Buzz NYC.

I started reporting for Queens Buzz in the second half of 2007, in anticipation of the website opening in 2008. At the time, politics wasn't in the docket. But over time, as I watched government and political events unfold, I couldn't ignore the huge gap between what was happening - versus what was reported to be happening.

Thus over time I began reporting on NYC, NYS and eventually national politics, doing in-depth research along the way, so that I could provide our readers with a fresh point of view, based on facts and knowledge, with scant pandering to the politicial spin.

While I only began tuning into NYC politics as a reporter during Michael Bloomberg's third term, I had picked up information about him prior to that as an aware NYC resident / voter. My first glimpse into Republican Mayor Michael Bloomberg's anti-democratic tendencies came about in 2004, during the Republican Presidential Convention, when Bloomberg appeared to illegally lock up people protesting the wars and policies of then president George W. Bush. But before I delve into that aspect of Bloomberg's performance, I want to highlight a few others.

 

Disdains Democracy: Overturns Mayoral Term Limits

michael bloomberg mayor bloomberg corruption bloomberg record as nyc mayorIn 2008, just a year before former Mayor Michael Bloomberg was about to be term limited out of the Mayor's Office, he convinced the NYC City Council to override the plebiscite that term limited his time in office as the Mayor.

Thus Michael Bloomberg sought and won a third term - which he essentially bought - by funding his campaign with nearly $100 million of his own money, to defeat an relatively unknown candidate, retiring City Comptroller Bill Thompson.

Thompson was not given much support by the Democratic Party in that election, likely because they didn't believe he would do anywhere near as well as he did, and they were competing with a billionaire who could / would and did greatly outspend the competition. The final vote was 50.7% for Bloomberg and 46.3% for Thompson.

 

Did Former Mayor Bloomberg Override Term Limits in Order to Cash In NYC's Municipal Real Estate Holdings?

The deals on the Bronx Terminal Market, Hudson Yard, Hunters Point South & Flushing Meadow Corona Park were all begun in 2007. So were the two multi-billion dollar [each] subway line extension projects - the Q and the #7.

All of the real estate developments and the two major subway infrastructure projects seemed to greatly benefit one person - Stephen Ross and his privately held Related Companies. Stephen Ross went from not being counted as a billionaire at the beginning of Bloomberg's Mayoralty, to becoming the richest real estate developer in New York City within a couple of years after he took office.

It's worth noting that Bloomberg's net worth during this period shot up too. And that Bloomberg LLP, the company he founded, also operates in NYC and is also privately held.

Former Mayor Michael Bloomberg's Real Record as Mayor

The Real Record of Mike Bloomberg's Accomplishments as Mayor - Doubling of Homelessnes, Taxpayer Funded but Privately Owned Luxury Apartments, Massive Public Land Giveaways to Friendly Developer, Massive Public Transit Spending Benefitting Same Developer, Privatization / Profitization of Many Public Schools, Failure to Negotiate with Unions, City Time Scandal & Racist Stop N' Frisk Policing Program

The report includes:

michael bloombergs record as nyc mayor mike bloomberg accomplishments mike bloomberg record mayor nyc1) HOMELESSNESS: Bloomberg had a horrendous record on homelessness which broke all records & doubled during his Mayoralty.

2) AFFORDABLE HOUSING: Bloomberg sold the public on funding 'affordable' apartments that rented for $48,000 per year. These were publicly funded but privately owned apartment units that Bloomberg sold to the public as 'affordable' in order to gain passage of the bills authorizing them.

3) PUBLIC LAND GRAB. Four huge real estate developments appeared to be given to Stephen Ross & Related Companies which are now worth billions. The public lands reportedly sold for $1 apiece include Hudson Yard, Hunters Point South and the still pending Flushing Meadows Corona Park development. I'm not sure but Bronx Terminal was also transferred in a sweet deal to the real estate developer Stephen Ross & Related Companies.

4) PUBLIC SPENDING BENEFITTING FRIENDLY DEVELOPER. Bloomberg pushed two subway line extensions that seemed to disproportionately benefit Stephen Ross & Related Companies. The subway line extensions were 1) the #7 subway line extension that supported Stephen Ross & Related Companies Hudson Yard development and 2) the Q subway line extension which greatly enhanced the value of Stephen Ross and Related Companies Upper East Side properties.

5) PRIVATIZATION OF PUBLIC SCHOOLS. Bloomberg's privatization of a significant portion of the NYC public school system which appeared to tear apart the NYC public school system by enabling for profit private charter schools, disproportionately favoring Eva Moskowitz and Success Academy, to recruit the best students of the NYC public school system, while leaving the rest behind in the hands of the public and unions;

6) UNION BUSTER? Bloomberg's failure to sign a single major union contract during his 12 year administration and the

7) GIULIANI / BLOOMBERG CORRUPTION. City Time corruption scandal.

8) RACIST POLICING POLICY. Presided over racist Stop N' Frisk policing policy.

CLICK here to read the rest of our report on the part of the Mike Bloomberg's record of Mayor. The part of the Bloomberg record you won't see in his $33 million ad campaign to convince Democrats to vote for him. Billionaire Bloomberg, like the billionaire President, seems to have an inclination to distort the truth.


Bronx New Years Eve Parties - Bronx New Years Even Restaurants & Bars New Years in the Bronx NYC | bronx new years eve parties bronx new year eve restaurants bronx new years eve celebrations diners restaurants cafes new years bronx NYE bronx nyc usa
Bronx New Years Eve Parties - Bronx New Years Even Restaurants & Bars New Years in the Bronx NYC

Bronx New Years Eve Parties & NYE Restaurants Bronx

New Years Eve Parties in Mott Haven, Port Morris, Melrose, Fordham, Concourse, Parkchester, Bedford Park, Belmont, University Heights Neighborhoods in the Bronx

December 29, 2019 / Bronx Neighborhoods / Bronx Holiday Events / Bronx Events & Things To Do / Bronx Restaurants NYC / Bronx Buzz NYC.

New Years Eve occurs on a Tuesday this year. It looks like the celebrations begin as early as the weekend before winding down for the year.

While New Years Eve is one big party, it's important to keep in mind, that like St. Patrick's Day, all the amateurs come out to play [it's not just the Irish who are out on St. Patrick's Day]. So some measure of caution is advised and you have to be careful.

Click here to read more about our round up of New Years Eve parties in the Bronx - New Years Eve restaurants Bronx.



Bronx Holiday Events & Things To Do & Bronx Holiday Markets | bronx things to do holidays bronx xmas events bronx christmas tree lightings bronx hannukah menorah lightings bronx kwanzaa candle lightings bronx holiday events bronx holiday holiday things to do bronx nyc
Bronx Holiday Events & Things To Do & Bronx Holiday Markets

Bronx Holiday Markets / Bronx Holiday Events & Things To Do

Bronx Holiday Shopping, Bronx Christmas Tree Lightings, Bronx Hanukkah Menorah Lightings, Bronx Kwanzaa Candle Lightings & Bronx Holiday Markets

Updated December 29, 2019 from 12.8.19 / Bronx Neighborhoods / Bronx Holiday Events / Bronx Events & Things To Do / Bronx Shops & Shopping / Bronx Buzz NYC.

The holidays are a special time of the year. In ancient times there were harvest celebrations to give thanks and enjoy the bounty of the year after a long season / year of work.

There were also winter solstice celebrations to commemorate the end of the darkening of the skies. Many cultures celebrate with a festival of lights, and in Christian cultures the holidays are marked with holiday lighting, tree lightings, candle lightings - as well as the celebration of giving through the most well known and most generous man in the world - Santa Claus.

Meanwhile, back in the Bronx we celebrate in a number of ways, which carry on some of these ancient traditions. The following provides the dates / times / locales and some details regarding many of the various Bronx holiday celebrations and Bronx holiday markets for folks to enjoy between now and the end of the year.

Click here to read our report about Bronx Holiday Markets / Bronx Holiday Events & Things To Do NYC.



NYC Marathon Coming Through the Bronx

New York Road Runners 49th NYC Marathon on Sunday

bronx things to do bronxOctober 29, 2019 / Bronx Things To Do NYC / Bronx Neighborhoods / Bronx Buzz NYC.

The New York Road Runners / NYRR is hosting its 49th NYC Marathon on Sunday. The NYRR was founded in 1958 and has been organizing the NYC Marathon since 1970. The proceeds from the race go toward the programs of the runner non-profit. They report that the NYRR serves 670,000 people, of which 250,000 are youth, annually.

There are plenty of festivities this week surrounding the affair. Some are held at the NYRR Run Center [NYRR headquarters] at 320 West 57th Street between 8th and 9th Avenues in Manhattan, while others are held at the NYC Marathon Pavilion in Central Park at 67th Street and Central Park West, near the Tavern on the Green in Manhattan.

The other pre-race activities [see location addresses above] include a discussion on Tuesday about the NYC Marathon Book Club from 6 - 8 pm at the NYC Marathon Pavilion. On Wednesday there's a forum of Celebrity Charity Runners who talk about why they are running at the NYC Marathon Pavilion from 7 - 8 pm. On Thursday evening between 6 and 7 pm the NYRR presents the awards for the NYRR Hall of Fame inductees at the NYC Marathon Pavilion. On Friday at the NYRR Run Center there's an NYRR Running History Tour which runs from 10 - 11.30 am.

The pre-race festivities culminate the Saturday evening before the race, when there's an early dinner [3.30 - 8.30 pm] for the runners at the NYC Marathon Pavilion that is prepared by the chefs from Tavern on the Green. They call it the Marathon Eve Dinner. It has a sort of holiday ring to it.

NYC Marathon Times, Route & Statistics to Beat

Statistics 2018. According to the NYRR.org website, in 2018 there were 52,813 runners, from 129 countries, their average run time was 4.40 [hours.minutes] and they raised $40 million for charity. This year there are a number of primarily TV game show celebrities running to raise money for charity.

According to Wikipedia, in 2018 records for participation were broken, yet again, with 30,669 men and 22,143 women participating. The fastest runs times were approximately 2.05 [hours.minutes] for men and 2.20 [hours.minutes] for women.

NYC Marathon Organized at Fort Wadsworth on Staten Island

As you can imagine, organizing the 52,000 plus runners in the NYC Marathon, is an annual logistics feat. The NYRR has organized the race into four Waves. Each Wave begins at a different time. Within each Wave there are three Start Times which are color coded green, orange and blue. In addition to three different start times for each wave, there are six different Corrals, A through F, where runners gather to be released into the race during their wave and start time.

NYC Marathon Start Times 2019

The NYC Marathon begins at 8.30 am at Fort Wadsworth on Staten Island. From there over 52,000 runners departed last year, and the race continues to grow in popularity. The first group to begin the race are in the wheelchair division, followed by the handcyclists. These two groups depart between 8.30 am and 8.52 am.

The next group departs at 9.10 am and it comprises the professional women competing for the title. They are followed a half hour later, at 9.40 am, by the professional men. It is at this time [9.40 am] that the first wave kicks in, with its three start times. The second wave begins at 10.10 am, the third wave begins at 10.35 am and the fourth and final wave begins at 11 am.

NYC Marathon Best Guess Viewing Times

The 16 mile mark of the 29 mile NYC Marathon is at the Queensboro Bridge. That's a bit more than halfway. If you divide the average run time of 4 hours and 40 minutes, to get 2 hours and 20 minutes, you can figure out - depending on which wave / start time your loved ones are in, roughly when they'll be at the halfway mark. And then you can add to that time if you're viewing in Manhattan, or subtract from that time if your viewing in Brooklyn, or be there at the start time if you're on Staten Island. For the Bronx adding three hours to their start time should give a good proximation of when they'll be coming through Mott Haven.

NYC Marathon Route 2019

The NYC Marathon had originally circumvented Central Park, but it quickly outgrew that locale.

Staten Island NYC Marathon Route. The route used today has been in place for a long time, possibly decades. It starts at Fort Wadsworth on Staten Island, crossing the Verrazzano Bridge.

Brooklyn NYC Marathon Route. The NYC Marathon travels along 4th Avenue through most of southern Brooklyn, then taking a short turn eastward on Lafayette in Downtown Brooklyn, before resuming the northern trek along Bedford Avenue through Williamsburg into Greenpoint, where the course jumps onto Manhattan Avenue at McCarren Park.

Queens NYC Marathon Route. The next step is across the Pulaski Bridge into Long Island City Queens, where the NYC Marathon zigs west to Vernon Blvd, marches north along Vernon Blvd, and then 44th Drive and 21st Street before crossing the Queensboro Bridge.

Manhattan NYC Marathon Route. In Manhattan the NYC Marathon travels north along First Avenue.

Bronx NYC Marathon Route. The NYC Marathon route traverses the Willis Avenue Bridge into the Port Morris and then Mott Haven neighborhoods of southern Bronx. The NYC Marathon then heads west along 135th Street to 138th Street in Mott Haven and turns south heading back through Port Morris, over the Madison Avenue Bridge to Manhattan.

Manhattan NYC Marathon Route. In Manhattan the NYC Marathon travels south along 5th Avenue and into Central Park at 125th Street coming down inside the park to end at the NYC Marathon Pavilion.

Whew. I'm plum tired out just cataloguing the route, let alone running it : )

** LINK. Here's a link to the NYC Marathon route map. Enjoy.


2nd Annual NYC Pizza Festival in Bronx Little Italy

The 2nd Annual NYC Pizza Fest in the Bronx was a Sequel that was Hit

October 21, 2019 / Bronx Restaurants / Bronx Things To Do / Bronx Neighborhoods / Bronx Buzz NYC.

The 2nd Annual NY Pizza Festival was held on the weekend of October 5th & 6th in Bronx Little Italy in the Belmont neighborhood near Fordham University. The festival was held over the weekend attracting thousands to the area to come sample some of the best pizza in New York City and surrounding area ... and there was even a pizza maker from Naples in Italy who had come for the event. I'll have more at a later date, but in the meantime you can sample some of the atmosphere and see some of the gourmet pizza served at the event.


Fordham Road Food Festival

Video & Short Report on the Fordham Road Food Festival

October 1, 2019 / Bronx Neighborhoods / Bronx Parades / Bronx Buzz NYC.

This video provides a good look at the entertainment, games, crowds and food available at the Fordham Road Food Festival last Saturday. We'll add more to this report in the future.

 


Bronx Puerto Rican Day Parade 2019

Video & Short Report on the Bronx Puerto Rican Day Parade

September 22, 2019 / Bronx Neighborhoods / Bronx Parades / Bronx Buzz NYC.

This video provides a good look at many of the performances included in the Bronx Puerto Rican Day Parade. We'll add more to this report on Monday.

 


Boogie on the Blvd by the Bronx Museum

September 16, 2019 / Concourse Neighborhood Bronx NYC / Bronx Things To Do NYC / Bronx Buzz NYC

The Bronx Museum hosted Boogie on the Blvd last weekend. The following video shows a bit of a prior Boogie on the Blvd in the Bronx, along with some clips of other Bronx Museum programs and events over the past couple of years.


Central American Independence Parade After Party in the Bronx

September 11, 2019 / Claremont Village East Tremont & West Farms Neighborhoods Bronx / Bronx Events NYC / Bronx Buzz NYC.

I attended the Central American Independence Parade after party in Crotona Park in the Bronx on a Sunday a couple of years ago. Last Sunday 9/8/19 the event returned and there were food stalls selling various delicacies representing the cuisine of many of the nations that make up Central America - but primarily the Honduras. There were also shopping opportunities for arts, crafts and cultural objects, as well as clothing.

On Sunday the parade started on a somber note, departing at 12 noon from East Tremont Avenue & Southern Blvd, which is the site of the Happy Land Fire Memorial, where in 1990 about 100 people lost their lives - mostly Honduran Garifuna people who were celebrating carnival. The parade celebrates Central Americans, most notably the Honduran Garifuna, and winds its way down Boston Road, and then Charlotte Street to Crotona Park East - ending between Crotona Avenue and Claremont Parkway.

Bronx Central American Independence Parade After Party in Crotona Park Bronx

At the after party in Crotona Park there was main stage set up not far from the Crotona Park amphitheater located along the southwest corner of Indian Pond. The amphitheater was built with stone seating embedded into the landscape and is reminiscent of the ancient amphitheater ruins at Delphi in Greece, but it wasn't used by the event organizers. On the main stage there were numerous musicians, dancers and performers, who entertained the crowd, and representing many Central American nations - but as noted above - mostly from the Honduras.

The video below captures some of the flavor of the Central American Independence Parade after party in Crotona Park in the Bronx a couple of years ago. Enjoy.


Corpus Christi Monastery in the Bronx

bronx monastery hunts point nycJune 19, 2019 / Hunts Point Neighborhood Bronx / Bronx History NYC / Bronx Buzz NYC.

Imagine my surprise when I happened upon a monastery in the Hunts Point neighborhood in the Bronx. The better I get to know the Bronx, the more surprises I find ... like an archeologist peeling away the layers and finding yet another series of layers that begin to tell the tale of one of the most misrepresented boroughs in NYC.

The Corpus Christi Monastery is located at 1230 Lafayette in the Hunts Point neighborhood. Only a little placard, posted on the monastery grounds wall, tells you what lies within.

The photo at right shows the Dominican monastery located in the Hunts Point Neighborhood of the Bronx.

 

The monastery was completed in 1891 according to Wikipedia. The NY Times reports that it's located only four blocks away from the infamous Fort Apache the Bronx. And yet within the cloistered walls, there's a serenity that likely hasn't changed much over the past century and a quarter.

bronx monastery hunts point nycThe photo at right, showing the Corpus Christi Monastery in the Bronx, was collected by the Museum of the City of New York and dated circa 1920.

The monastery is inhabited by the Dominican nuns who practice a contemplative life. They came to the Bronx in the 1880's by invitation of Father Corrigan who wanted a community of the contemplative in the Bronx. Today the monastery is the oldest monastery of the Dominican Order in the United States. An April 28, 2016 CBS report noted that the monastery is in need of donations for repairs, which they were hoping to complete for the 800th anniversary of the order in May of 2016 ... but it looked like they weren't going to reach their goal.

On Sundays about 50 members of the community join the contemplative nuns in attendance at the church for mass.


The Hunts Point Fish Parade

Coming to a Bronx Barretto Park Near You

bronx things to do bronxJune 11, 2019 / Hunts Point Neighborhood Bronx / Bronx Parades NYC / Bronx Buzz NYC.

Last year I had the pleasure of attending the 15th Annual Hunts Point Fish Parade. The parade returns this year on Saturday, June 15th.

The Hunts Point Fish Parade is a community parade, celebrating the history and ongoing revival of the Hunts Point neighborhood in the Bronx. The parade begins at Hunts Point Riverside Park, which is periodically used as a landing and / or launching point by the Bronx River Alliance. The Bronx River Alliance is a green kyaking, canoeing and sailing organization, that conducts many of its events along the Bronx River.

The Hunts Point Fish Parade is organized by the Point Community Development Corporation - or Point CDC - which is a non-profit dedicated to the cultural, economic and youth development of the Hunts Point neighborhood. To that end they march down to Barretto Point Park, which is a recently refurbished NYC Park that has something of an incredible view looking south along the East River into Manhattan and Queens.

bronx things to do bronxIn Barretto Park I found a number of tables set up, many of which last year contained political candidate information, but also information on healthy eating and exercise, generally tied to local organizations within the community offering such products and services. There were basketball games held in the park, as well as impromptu pick up games being played by some of the children, and down along the waterfront there was entertainment by a number of different local groups.

I'll try to post a bit more about this later today / this week. But again note that the 16th Annual Hunts Point Fish Parade is on Saturday, June 15th, with the parade registration beginning at 10 am, the parade beginning about 11 am - both at Hunts Point Riverside Park. And the parade ends at Barretto Park, where the festival begins at 12 noon and runs until a quarter to 5 pm.


St Anthony Festival in Bronx Little Italy

Next Week the Bronx Little Italy Festival of St. Anthony Returns to Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church in the Belmont Neighborhood of the Bronx

June 4, 2019 / Belmont Neighborhood of the Bronx / Bronx Restaurants NYC / Bronx Buzz NYC.

bronx feast of st anthony our lady of mount carmel church belmont neighborhood arthur avenue bronx little italy bronx feast of st anthony videoNext week on Wednesday, June 12 from 6 pm to 10 pm - The Feast of St. Anthony. begins in the Belmont neighborhood of the Bronx. It's the 113th annual Feast of St Anthony at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church at 627 East 187th Street. The festival includes a number of religious and church services, beginning on Wednesday and ending on Sunday with a procession that begins at 5 pm. The general public is welcome to attend the church services as well as the Italian flavored festival in the Little Italy section of the Bronx, located just south of Fordham University, adjacent to Arthur Avenue in the Belmont neighborhood of the Bronx.

The St. Anthony festival includes rides, games, raffles, food and entertainment every night. We attended last year and put together a short video to give you a sampling of what rides and games to expect when you attend, which has been posted below. The food is not really shown very much in the video, but is a bit in the report, but it's generally a mix of Italian, Latin and grilled fare.

Festival Location / Hours. The festival runs from Wednesday, June 12th through Sunday, June 16th and the hours are Wed & Thurs from 6 - 10 pm / Fri until 11 pm, Sat from 2 pm - 11 pm / Sun from 2 pm - 10 pm. The festival is located in the triangle of streets along Cresent and Arthur Avenues & 187th Street in the Belmont neighborhood of the Bronx [along East 187th street from Arthur to Beaumont Avenue, and along Crescent from Cambreleng to Belmont Avenue].

It's free to walk around but you'll need to pay for the rides and food, but they're competively priced.

We also wrote a short report on the Festival of St. Anthony near Arthur Avenue in Little Italy in the Bronx, which you can read by clicking the prior link.



Orchard Beach Opens for Season

Bronx Beach in Pelham Bay Park Opens for 2019 Summer Season

May 27, 2019 / Orchard Beach Bronx Neighborhoods / Things To Do Bronx / Bronx Buzz NYC.

Orchard Beach opened over the Memorial Day Weekend. The 1.1 mile beach is open from 10 am - 6 pm, at which time there's a lifeguard on duty. Swimming is prohibited when a life guard is not on duty.

It's located at the southern end of Pelham Bay Park, which you can easily drive to where parking is $8 during weekdays and $10 on weekends. You can also get there via bicycle or a combination of taking the #6 subway to the last stop which is Pelham Bay Park and then taking the #12 bus to Orchard Beach. If you're interested in dining, City Island is nearby and you can take the #29 bus there or walk / cycle as it's about a mile.

Orchard Beach in the Bronx has free shower, changing and bathroom facilities. You can also barbeque there.

The video below shows one of many entertainment events at Orchard Beach over the summer, which we'll have more on as the summer arrives.


 


The Old Croton Aqueduct Trail

Wandering Along an Architectural & Construction Marvel

bronx things to do bronxMay 14, 2019 / Highbridge Neighborhood Bronx / Bronx History NYC / Bronx Buzz NYC.

I came upon a pedestrian walk way while exploring the Highbridge neigbhorhood in the Bronx. I soon found it was called the Old Croton Aqueduct Trail and that a stone aqueduct, completed in 1842, lie beneath the smooth level walk way I was making my way along.

When I returned home, I found a whole history of the Old Croton Aqueduct and the positive impact it had on New York nearly two centuries ago, and it was designed and built so well, that it continues to play a role in many New Yorkers' daily lives.

The photo at right shows the pedestrian trail that runs atop the Old Croton Aqueduct in the Bronx.

I'll have more later today about the history and the impact of the Old Croton Aqueduct. Along with the history, you'll learn quite a bit about the history of popular locations today in both the Bronx and Manhattan.


Video Tour of the Bronx Zoo - Photos of Bronx Zoo on the Bronx Buzz | bronx zoo video tour bronx zoo photos bronx zoo in nyc bedford park belmont neighborhoods near the bronx zoo nyc
Video Tour of the Bronx Zoo - Photos of Bronx Zoo on the Bronx Buzz

Video Tour of the Bronx Zoo with Photos

The Bronx Zoo Provides an Enjoyable Learning Experience

April 30, 2019 / Belmont Neighborhood / Bronx Things To Do / Bronx Buzz NYC.

A couple of weeks ago I visited the Bronx Zoo. Tickets to the Bronx Zoo aren't cheap as admission is $40 / $35 / $30 or you can obtain a year long membership pass for three adults and four children for $210. On Wednesdays, you can make a voluntary donation or even be admitted free, but you have to pay for admission to special exhibits. It's worth mentioning that the Bronx Zoo is far too big to really 'do' in one day.

bronx zoo bronx things to do bronx zoo nycThe Bronx Zoo sits atop 265 acres and is run by a non-profit environmental conservation organization, the Wildlife Conservation Society. While the official address of the Bronx Zoo is 2300 Southern Blvd, there are three other entrances to the park - one at Southern Blvd at Bronx Park South, another at Bronx River Parkway and Pelham Parkway and the one through which I entered, the Asia Gate, at 180th Street and Tremont Avenue. For most New Yorkers using public transit, the Asia Gate is your best bet via subway as the #2 & #5 subway train stop at 180th Street is only a block away.

Although the base entrance fee is free on Wednesdays, the park asks for additional charges to gain admittance to special exhibits, of which there are at least eight. The special experience exhibits include: 1) the Bug Carousel, 2) the Congo Gorilla Forest, 3) the Nature Trek, 4) the Jungle World, 5) the Butterfly Garden, 6) the Zoo Shuttle, 7) the Wild Asia Monorail and 8) the Children's Zoo. I visited only one of them, Jungle World, as to 'do' one of them properly, I recommend allotting about an hour or more of time.

The Jungle World is one of the first special exhibits accessible from the Asia Gate.




Mediums of Exchange at Lehman Art Gallery

Two Site Art Exhibit Explores the Role of Money in Society

bronx things to do bronxApril 9, 2019 / Bedford Park Neighborhood / Bronx Art Scene / Bronx Buzz NYC.

There's an art exhibit entitled Mediums of Exchange that opened at the Shirley Fiterman Art Center at the Borough of Manhattan Community College in Tribeca / Downtown Manhattan on January 31st, 2019 and ended March 30th. But it was a two site / two part art exhibit, with the second site opening in the Bedford Park neighborhood of the Bronx at the Lehman College Art Gallery on February 9th and which runs through May 4th, 2019.

It's a group show, that showcases 35 artists, most if not all of whom I believe are NYC based [unconfirmed]. And the exhibit explores the role of money from a social, psychological and economic point of view. On Wednesdays there are artist talks beginning at 5 pm. I am currently in the process of trying to find out if the artist talks are held every Wednesday or only periodically [ad hoc] and then how late the gallery stays open on those evenings, because the Lehman Art Gallery is normally open from 10 am - 4 pm Tuesday through Saturday.

I hope to post more about this exhibit at a later date. The image above was taken from the Lehman Art Gallery in the Bronx.


Daughters of the Stone

The Tale of 5 Generations of Afro-Caribbean Women

bronx things to do bronxApril 2, 2019 / Bronx Neighborhoods - Concourse / Bronx Culture & Literature / Bronx Buzz NYC.

A couple of weeks ago I had an opportunity to attend a book talk by Dahlma Llanos-Figueroa at the Andrew Freedman Home in the Central Bonx neighborhood on the Concourse.

The Andrew Freedman Home is worth the trip in itself and it was a rare treat to hear a distinguished author in such a distinguished setting. But I was not alone in savoring the moments.

The room was full, mostly of women, many of whom likely were of some Puerto Rican or African descent, and they had come to learn more about their shared past as described by one woman who had fictionalized some of the history of five generations of her family.

I'll have more later today on the Daughters of the Stone by Dahlma Llanos-Figueroa at the Andrew Freedman Home on Friday, March 15th.


NYS Rent Regulations up for Renewal

NYS Assembly and NYS Senate to Strengthen, Renew or let Expire NYS Rent Regulation Laws

queens things to doMarch 19, 2019 / Queens Neighborhoods / Queens Government & Politics / Queens Buzz NYC.

On Saturday I attended an event discussing the upcoming legislation pending in the NYS government in Albany concerning NYS rent regulations. Currently about 2 million of the 8.5 million people who live in NYC will be affected.

The primary topic of the event was MCI or Major Capital Improvements, which is a loophole in rent regulations that allows landlords to initiate projects within their buildings and then pass along the project costs to their tenants, in such manner as to provide the landlord with an incremental revenue increase that lasts into eternity, and which encourages landlords to get creative in originating projects in an effort to raise the rents of their regulated apartments at an accelerating speed in order to grow the monthly rent beyond the legal limit of regulation.

What happens then, is that a significant number of longstanding tenants in regulated housing, are priced out of their homes and neighborhoods. Some of the displaced tenants even become homeless. This is why homelessness nearly doubled under former Mayor Michael Bloomberg - who looked the other way as NYS rent regulations were being renewed.

The event was held in the Corona neighborhood of Queens, where hundreds - if not a thousand - people came to particpate in the discussion.

I'll have more on this at a later date.


Bronx St Patricks Day Bars, Irish Pubs & Restaurants in the Bronx NYC | nyc bronx st pats day bars irish pubs restaurants bronx nyc st pats day throgs neck city island morris park mott haven norwood kingsbridge fieldston van courtlandt bronx irish pubs restaurants bars bronx irish restaurants bronx nyc
Bronx St Patricks Day Bars, Irish Pubs & Restaurants in the Bronx NYC

St Pat's Day Bars & Irish Pubs & Restaurants in the Bronx

Bronx St Pat's Day Pubs, Irish Bars & Restaurants On St. Patrick's Day in the Bronx Neighborhoods of Throgs Neck, Kingsbridge, Fieldston, Bedford Park, Mott Haven, Norwood, Woodlawn Heights, Westchester Square [near Morris Park], Middleton Pelham Bay [near City Island], Williamsbridge and one in Yonkers

February 25, 2020 / Bronx Neighborhoods NYC / Bronx Restaurants NYC / St Patricks Day Parade Throgs Neck Bronx / Bronx Buzz NYC.

St. Patrick's Day is upon us once again and it's time for one and all, regardless of genetic history, to don their green clothing and head out to the Irish bars for a pint of ale or to the Irish restaurants for some down home Irish fare ... or something like that.

This report is about some of the Bronx Irish bars and restaurants that have survived the test of time, and likely a might bit ... more. The Irish pubs include Irish bars and restaurants from Throgs Neck, Kingsbridge, Fieldston, Bedford Park, Morris Park, Mott Haven, Norwood, Woodlawn Heights, Westchester Square, Middleton Pelham Bay [near City Island], Williamsbridge and one in Yonkers.



Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. - Bronx State of the Borough Address - Bronx NYC | bronx borough president ruben diaz jr state of the bronx borough address 2019 bronx state of the boro address ruben diaz jr nys senator chuck schumer bronx nyc
Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. - Bronx State of the Borough Address - Bronx NYC

Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr Unofficially Announces Mayoral Candidacy

Bronx Borough President Diaz Delivers Borough Address 2019

February 21, 2019 / Mott Haven Neighborhood / Bronx Neighborhoods / Bronx Politics & Government / Bronx Buzz NYC.

I stepped inside the auditorium, at Samuel Gompers Career and Technical Education High School in Mott Haven, just as the National Anthem began. Eden Augustine from the Bronx High School of Science sang the anthem last year and this year it was xyz from H.E.R.O High. The H.E.R.O. stands for Health, Education & Research Occupations.

The Principal of the school, Kristen Cahill Garcia, stepped out onto the stage to say a few words. She noted that Samuel Gompers CTE High School had closed in 2015 and re-opened that Fall as three schools: 1) H.E.R.O. High, 2) a New Visions Charter High School for the Humanities II, and 3) Mott Haven Community High School which is a transfer school for older students. She went on to say that while things have been progressing in a positive direction – there’s still more work to be done.

Senate Minority Leader Schumer Gives Introductory Remarks

The next speaker, was a surprise guest, Democratic Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer. Senator Schumer mentioned how he was trying to help with affordable housing and getting more train stations added for commuters in the Eastern neighborhoods of the Bronx. He talked about how we are stronger when we are united, and that the Bronx seems to be united, in spite of the fact that so many of its denizens come from somewhere else. He finished by complimenting Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. on his leadership.

Bronx President's State of the Borough Address Well Attended

And the last of the ‘warm up remarks’ was given by a Bronx Borough President's Office staffer [Communications Director John DeSio?] who called off a very long list of people in attendance including: Bronx City Council members, NYS Senators, NYS Assembly members, NYC government officials, people representing federal and state government officials, a few Brooklynites, and high ranking Bronx Borough officials like the head of the NYPD in the Bronx and NYC Parks Department in the Bronx and others. He continued on, mentioning folks from non-profits including a number of people representing higher learning institutions in the Bronx such as ruben diaz jr state of the bronx borough ruben diaz bronx state of the borough 2019 bronx soutb 2019 bronx nyc ruben diaz jrHostos, Monroe and Bronx Community Colleges, members of the leadership teams at Jacobi Hospital and Lincoln Medical Center, and Bronx cultural organizations like the NY Botanical Gardens, the Bronx Museum, the Bronx Council for the Arts, and lastly, but not least, the Bronx Chamber of Commerce and several Bronx union chapters like the Bronx Carpenters Union and Bronx Electrical Union. This is not a complete list but it’s a pretty good summary without the full detail.

Not in Attendance - Ruben Diaz Sr?

Notably absent from the list, was NYC Councilmember Ruben Diaz Sr., who made his way into the news with a comment about gays last week – click here to read a short report. I reckon Ruben Diaz Sr.’s absence was probably best for both of them, as they seem to have a good relationship, even though they’re different from one another.

We were treated to a short, entertaining video featuring the Bodega Boys, who reportedly just signed with Showtime for a program at 11 pm on Thursdays. The Bodega Boys started a podcast that put them into the big time. Kind of like how Cardi B started posting videos on YouTube, which went viral and made her into the top billing name she is today.

In the video there was an ‘unofficial announcement’ of Ruben Diaz Jr.’s plans to run for NYC Mayor in 2021 [see photo still from the video above].



Bronx City Council Member Ruben Diaz Sr Creates a Stir with Remarks about Gays & Loses Chairmanship | bronx city council member ruben diaz sr nys senator ruben diaz sr bronx government bronx politics bronx nyc
Bronx City Council Member Ruben Diaz Sr Creates a Stir with Remarks about Gays & Loses Chairmanship

Ruben Diaz Sr.'s Comments on Gays

NYC City Council Member Ruben Diaz Sr. Creates Stir & Loses Chairman Post

February 15, 2019 / Bronx Neighborhoods / Bronx Buzz NYC.

The photo at right shows Ruben Diaz Sr at Ruben Diaz Jr's State of the Borough Address in 2018. This week or so, New York City Councilman Diaz opened his mouth and stuck a cowboy-sized boot in it, declaring that City Hall was, "... controlled by the homosexual community ...". The statement cost Diaz his NYC Council Chairmanship, and the NYC Council then voted 45 - 1 to punish him, following an investigation.

Diaz Sr isn't doing his son, Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr, any favors, as his son has been rumored to be contemplating a run for Mayor in 2021.

Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr tweeted that his father's remarks were antagonistic, not inclusive nor respectful of our diversity, and that his father should apologize. Thus far Ruben Diaz Sr has refused to do so. Diaz, a former minister, ought to pay heed to the Bible, which in the Book of Proverbs tells us that, "Pride goeth before the fall."



Bronx Valentines Day Restaurants - Bronx Romantic Restaurants Bronx NYC | bronx valentines day restaurants bronx valentines dinners mott haven valentines day bronx fordham university heights valentines day riverdale valentines restaurants city island concourse belmont morris park parkchester bedford park melrose throgs neck valentines day restaurants bronx nyc
Bronx Valentines Day Restaurants - Bronx Romantic Restaurants Bronx NYC

Bronx Valentines Day Restaurants - Bronx NYC

Valentines Day / Romantic Restaurants in or near Mott Haven, Fordham, Port Morris, Concourse, Bedford Park, Norwood, University Heights, City Island, Riverdale, Melrose, Morris Park, Westchester Square & Parkchester Bronx NYC

February 5, 2020 / Bronx Neighborhoods / Bronx Restaurants / Bronx Buzz NYC.

Valentine's Day is less than two weeks away. It's a good time to let your loved one know you care. Flowers, gifts and dinner are always welcome treats, and / or some thoughtful gesture that shows that the lady [or man] you're with, still means a lot to you.

It's generally hard to make restaurant reservations on short notice at a romantic Bronx restaurant on Valentine's Day, and sometimes it's difficult to make them for the weekend preceding Valentine's Day. So if you're thinking about doing something this Valentine's Day for dinner in or around the Mott Haven, Fordham, Port Morris, Concourse, Bedford Park, Norwood, University Heights, City Island, Riverdale, Melrose, Morris Park, Westchester Square & Parkchester neighborhoods; it's best to do your research early, and call a week or at least a few days ahead to make the reservations.

Valentine's Day History - Romantic Restaurants in the Bronx

The origins of Valentine's Day are not well documented. It's believed to have been named after Saint Valentine who was apparently a Catholic martyr who died over 1500 years ago. Today the holiday is not associated with religion so much as flowers, candies, cards and romantic dinners. And the holiday spokesperson is now Cupid, a Roman god of desire, and quite a mischief maker.

Click this link to view a brief guide of Valentine's Day restaurants in the Bronx / romantic restaurants Bronx NYC where you will find short descriptions or links to Bronx restaurants we've visited in the past or have reviewed. The restaurants we've reviewed include a mix of high, medium and budget priced restaurants that are spread throughout the borough and offer a large variety of ethnic cuisines. Enjoy.



Who was Louis J. Heintz?

Joyce Kilmer Park Statues Contain a bit of Bronx History

louis j heintz statue photos joyce kilmer park bronx nycJanuary 29, 2019 / Concourse Neighborhood / Bronx Neighborhoods / Bronx Buzz NYC.

Last Fall I attended a gathering at the Bronx Museum where the Chairman of the NY Federal Reserve gave a speech about the economy. He had come to Bronx to take the pulse of things here, as much as or even more than to spread the word about what the Federal Reserve was doing, as - at the time - things were going quite well.

After the meeting I walked back to the subway at 165th Street and Jerome Avenue near Yankee Stadium. On my way, I walked down the Grand Concourse which runs north / south through the center of the Bronx. Alongside the Grand Concourse, immediately north of the Bronx Borough Hall, there's a beautiful park that provides a welcoming spot for one to relax and enjoy a beautiful day, which it was.

As I took in the day, watching the kids play on the northwest end of the park, and older folks sitting on the park benches a bit further south, I started noticed one of the beautiful statues standing stately in the park near the southwest corner. I photographed the statue and researched the man it honored when I returned home. The statue, shown at right, was of Louis J. Heintz.

 

Heintz & the John Eichler Brewing Company of Claremont Neighborhood in the Bronx

eichler brewing company photos bronx nycLouis J. Heintz lived a very short life as he was born in 1861 and died in 1893. He was of German descent and worked in Eichler Brewery at 169th Street, between Fulton and Third Avenue in what is today the Claremont neighborhood. The John Eichler Brewing Company was run by Heintz's uncle. The John Eichler Brewery opened in 1865 and remained in business - save during the Prohibition [1920 - 1933] - until in 1947, The John Eichler Brewing Company discontinued operations. In the 1880's Louis J. Heintz became the President of the Brewers Board of Trade of New York and became a respected businessman.

 

The photo above right shows the Eichler Brewing Company which was featured in the book entitled Images of the South Bronx published by Arcadia Publishing. And shown below is an Eichler Brewing Company beer label, which was probably from the Prohibition given its low alcohol content.

eichler brewing company photos bronx nycHeintz's uncle, John Eichler, was born in Bavaria in 1829. In 1858, having learned the brewing trade, before emigrating to America. He worked for the Turtle Bay Brewery for a few years, before forming a brewery which bought the Kolb Brewery in 1865, which he transformed into John Eichler Brewery. In 1888 Eichler formed the company into a stockholding company, because his health was failing. John Eichler died in 1892. As mentioned above, the company continued until it was purchased in 1947, by which time it had become one of the largest breweries in New York City, producing a half million barrels per year.

 

New York City Annexes Southern Bronx 1874 / Eastern Bronx 1895

New York City expanded the boundaries of the city in 1874 by annexing the southern areas of the Bronx including Kingsbridge, Morrisania and West Farms. Later, in 1895, the East Bronx was added while expanding the city's boundary. And in 1898 the area that is today modern day Queens, the city of Brooklyn and Staten Island were all added to comprise what is today the five boroughs of New York City. Each borough is a separate county of New York State.

Louis Heintz Becomes Bronx Street Commissioner

eichler brewing company photos bronx nycFollowing the annexation of the Bronx as part of New York City in 1874, the people of the Bronx found their street development lacking. In 1889 Heintz began advocating for a position managed independently in the Bronx, to pave and manage the streets. Heintz became the first Bronx Commissioner of Streets in 1890, after gaining agreement starting a year earlier that such a position was needed in order to have the Bronx streets paved.

Heintz died shortly after falling ill, following attendance at President Grover Cleveland's inauguration which was held on March 4, 1893. Grover Cleveland was the 22nd and 24th President of the United States. Prior to becoming President he was the Governor of New York State and the Mayor of Buffalo.

The photo at right shows the Eichler Mansion at 169th Street and Fulton in the Claremont neighborhood of the Bronx which was featured in the book entitled Images of the South Bronx published by Arcadia Publishing.

The statue of Louis J. Heintz was cast in 1905 and dedicated in 1909.

Sources: OldBreweries.com, Wikipedia.org, NYCGovParks.org, FindaGrave.com, BronxMall.com and Images of the South Bronx [a book by Arcadia Publishing].


NY Botanical - The Bronx Garden of Eden

An Array of Enticements for World Travelers & Locals in NYC

bronx things to do bronxJanuary 15, 2019 / Bedford Park Neighborhood / Bronx Neighborhoods / Bronx Things To Do / Bronx Buzz NYC.

A week ago I headed up to the New York Botanical Garden to view the Holiday Train Show and experience their famous Bar Car Nights. It was a Saturday and the program began around 7 pm. I walked from the subway and arrrived about 8 pm, so I had plenty of time to look around, since it went on until 10.30 pm.

I entered at the western gate along Southern Blvd and walked along the winding path, heading to the pavilion where there were food vendors, a fire and an ice sculptor. Along the path of the Garden Way there were dancers from American Circus Theatre performing slow moving pieces that highlighted the body as form in motion. I paused at the Christmas tree, which was postcard perfect and the sight of numerous photo taking sessions, before heading up to the Pavilion.

The Pavilion is tucked just inside the NY Botanical Gardens southern gate. Local food vendors were tucked in along the walls and a railing in a U shape, with a fire burning in the middle of it. The food vendors are generally participants of the Bronx Night Market, and thus may change from week to week. The Bronx Night Market which is a seasonal pop up market in the Fordham neighborhood.

This week the food vendors were Kernelicious from the Fordham neighborhood serving gourmet popcorn, City Tamale from the bronx things to do bronxHunts Point neighborhood serving Mexican food, Barbeque on a Stick from Long Island City in Queens serving Homestyle Filipino barbeque on a stick, and The Fried Kitchen who are caterers from Port Morris serving fried chicken. They were also serving wine and beer, where a line had formed.

I watched an ice sculptor from Okamoto Studio NYC ply his trade, as it appeared he had nearly completed a sphinx-like cat. Behind him there was the NY Botanical Garden Pine Cafe and beyond that a long separate room, where a couple of local musicians were entertaining a fairly large crowd with some American tunes from the 20th century.

Finally, I was ready to visit the famed Holiday Train Show, which was situated inside the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory. The Conservatory is "a stunning example of Victorian-style glass house artistry" and worth a visit by itself. The building was inspired by the Royal Botanic Garden in London and took three years to erect, completed in 1902. The Enid A. Haupt Conservatory is used to house the Holiday Train Show during the holidays and the Orchid Show in the Spring.

Visitors from around the world come to visit the NY Botanical Gardens, to see the Conservatory, as well as forest that bronx things to do bronxthe Botanical Garden has tried to keep intact since prior to the Revolutionary War in the late 1700's. It's a highly challenging preservation task, given the NY Botanical Garden is situated in one of the largest cities in the world, where winds bring unwelcome vegetational visitors, and pollution doesn't make things any easier.

Inside the Haupt Conservatory I found the Holiday Train Show. The New York Botanical Garden Holiday Train Show is also worth a visit on its own, but the Bar Car Night program allows you to satisfy your curiosity on both of these attractions, at the same time. The Holiday Train Show began 27 years ago in 1991.

A film showing how the New York Botanical Holiday Train Show had been constructed was shown at the entrance. This was followed by tables and elevated train tracks where the trains seemed to soar past us. But the real treat lie in wait, as we entered the Conservatory where the lush green vegetation was used as the environment for the trains and associated structures. Overhead, literally dozens of feet above us, were the paned glass windows of possibly a century ago.

bronx things to do bronxPeople were milling about, enjoying the ambiance, the train show detail, and each others' company. While it was early January, the holiday spirit remained intact. I spent a fair amount of time taking it all in before I headed back to the bar, where another group of folks were milling about enjoying the social ambiance. On my way out I passed by some NYBG carolers who had created a chorus of visitors singing some well known holiday tunes. The last Bar Car Nights of the Season was January 12th, but it will return in mid November of this year. And the Holiday Train Show runs one more week, ending Monday, January 21, 2019.

Tickets cost $38 for non-members and $28 for NYBG members. P.S. They also have a restaurant called the Hudson Garden Grill in the Ross Conifer Arboretum, which is between the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory and the western Southern Blvd Gate. It's open daily from 11.30 am - 6 pm, but they vary the light and full menu based on weekdays / weekends.

Scroll down to view a video of the Bar Car Nights at the NY Botanical Gardens, including the Holiday Train Show.


Bar Car Nights at the New York Botanical Garden

January 5, 2018 / Bedford Park Fordham Central Bronx Neighborhoods / Holiday Things To Do Bronx / Bronx Buzz NYC.

This is a short video capturing the various entertainment offerings included in the NY Botanical Garden Bar Car Nights program over the holidays. There was music, an outside fire surrounded by presumably Bronx restaurateurs' offerings, an ice sculptor performing his art, dancers and singers caroling and performing, and the holiday train show in the Enid Haupt Conservatory, which is worth the trip all in itself. Next Saturday is the last night of this program until next Fall.


NYC Marathon Runs Through the Bronx

Since 1976 the NYC Marathon Has Run Through the Bronx

November 13, 2018 / Mott Haven Neighborhood / Bronx Sports / Bronx Neighborhoods / Bronx Buzz NYC.

On November 4th, 2018 over 52,000 runners traversed the lower part of the Bronx borough. The Bronx is part of a 26 mile long course that's been used by the NYC Marathon for a long while.

According to Wikipedia the current race configuration was first outlined and used in 1976. Wikipedia also reports that the NYC Marathon is the largest marathon in the world. The NYC Marathon originated in 1970, running around Central Park, but picked up so much interest that it was expanded just six years later to its current five borough course.

Literally tens of thousands come out to watch the runners traverse their neighborhoods. And the locals are joined by likely tens of thousands more, who come to cheer their runners onward. The spectators come from all over the nation and all around the world. It's a very festive day / weekend and the city is packed with visitors.

Generally the NYC Marathon weekend officially begins in Central Park with official festivities, the configuration of which has been evolving over the years. The race is generally sponsored by a large national or multi-national company, which uses the event promotionally to create awareness around their brand name. I've noticed that recently the branded promotional merchandising of items appears to have expanded significantly.

This year I covered the NYC Marathon in Brooklyn, but below is a video I shot in the Bronx in 2017, but didn't post. It's still a short, fun one and a half minute watch. Enjoy.


Pregones Theater in the South Bronx

The Bronx is Hitting its Stride as one of NYC's Great Cultural Centers

October 22, 2018 / Concourse Neighborhood Bronx / Music Dance & Theater Bronx / Bronx Buzz NYC.

Last summer the Pregones Theater or Teatro Pregones hosted a block party in tandem in the Concourse neighborhood with Lincoln Center Out of Doors. The recognition by Lincoln Center for the quality of Pregones Theater programming, shows just how far Teatro Pregones has come in earning the respect of one of the nation's most elite cultural centers. But this is nothing new for the Bronx these days.

Since gaining recognition for Rap and Hip Hop, the Bronx became known for its music, art and culture. Rap is said to have begun starting in 1973 when the first known hip hop party was thrown by DJ Kook Herc at 1520 Sedgewick Avenue in the nearby Morris Heights neighborhood in the Bronx.

The Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five were organized in the mid 1970's by John Saddler who took the name of Grand Master Flash. One of the Furious Five members, Keef Cowboy, is credited with coming up with the name hip hop. In 1979 The Sugar Hill Gang's Rappers' Delight reportedly brought Rap and Hip Hop into the mainstream. And in the following three decades, Rap and Hip Hop went mainstream, with rappers and hip hop artists emerging from all around the nation and all around the world.

In 2015 Belcalis Marlenis Almánzar, known as Cardi B, emerged as a national artist, after a few of her videos went viral. In 2017 Kardi B put out a single, Bodack Yellow, that quickly rose to #1. I went to listen to it on Youtube and it uses an Arabian theatrical motif, where Kardi B talks about dancing. Kardi B was formerly a strip club dancer and she rapped about how she doesn't need to dance for 'you' anymore. Once a poor nobody with some looks and talent, Kardi B became a rich and famous somebody almost overnight. Her video has received 668 million views.

Within the same month, Boogie wit da Hoodie , whose birthname is , put out an album, The Bigger Artist, that also went to #1. That video received 21 million views. Thus, these two artists - along with a number of others, moved the Bronx back into the limelight of Rapper / Hip Hop culture.

The reason I mention all of this, is because as you watch the video below, you'll notice the rich cultural poetry, and emerging sense of theater, emanating from two of the guest performers I saw that day. Pregones Theater / Teatro Pregones continues to host other talented artists throughout the year in both Spanish and English ... and if the block party is any indication ... far beyond these two languages alone.


Pizza in the Bronx - New York Pizza Festival near Arthur Avenue in Belmont | new york pizza festival belmont neighborhood bronx nyc italian neighborhoods bronx italian restaurants bronx arthur ave pizza in the bronx ny pizza festival photos video
Pizza in the Bronx - New York Pizza Festival near Arthur Avenue in Belmont

New York Pizza Festival in the Bronx

1st Annual NY Pizza Festival in Bronx Little Italy was a Success

October 7, 2018 / Belmont Neighborhood & Arthur Avenue / Bronx Restaurants / Bronx Neighborhoods / Bronx Buzz NYC.

It was a warm, humid afternoon as I made my way north to the Arthur Avenue section of the Belmont neighborhood in the Bronx. I was on my way to the first annual Pizza Festival hosted by the Belmont BID [Business Improvement District] in the Bronx Little Italy.

As I made my way east from the subway and began to enter the neighborhood, I began to feel the transformation of entering another world. Visiting Bronx Little Italy on Arthur Avenue had never felt like this before. Perhaps it was the laziness of a Saturday afternoon in the Fall, or possibly the increased pedestrian traffic associated with the Pizza Festival, but Arthur Avenue looked great in all of its Italian splendor.

So I took my time walking south along the Avenue to Crescent Street where the festival was being held. There were plenty of people out and about, enjoying the afternoon in the neighborhood, and Arthur Avenue had dressed up to impress, showing its charm as a competitive alternative to the more touristed Little Italy in Manhattan.

ny pizza festival bronx new york pizza festival photos & video italian neighborhoods bronx italian restaurants belmont neighborhood bronx photosWhen I arrived at Cresent Street there were blocks of small white tents lined up along one side of the street. A large but dispersed crowd was milling around many of the booths, even though I had arrived around 4 pm, well past the opening at noon.

I made my way past the entertainment to get a closer look at the pizza makers, their ovens and their wares. Making pizza looked to be a fairly simple process for these pros. The Belmont BID website said there were about 34 pizza makers from NYC who were there to compete for the attendees' interest and sales.

I began talking to some of the pizza makers, who seemed to be having fun. I caught up with Mayor de Blasio midway through the festival. He was surrounded by a lot of the pizza makers and / or the NY Pizza Festival attendees, and there seemed to be a bit of back and forth and picture taking and what not. So I took a few photos too, before moving on to Gino's Pizza.

  • CLICK here to read the rest of our report about the NY Pizza Festival Bronx including a short video of the event.




Doc Film Center in the Bronx

Film Based Cultural Center Attracts Eclectic Group for presentation of Carlos Villalon’s Coca: The Lost War on Drugs

doc film center melrose movies in the bronx cinema film bronxSeptember 24, 2018 / Melrose Neighborhood Bronx / Arts & Film in the Bronx / Bronx Buzz NYC.

In July I visited the Doc Film Center in the Bronx to attend a new film by Carlos Villalon about the failed war on drugs. I arrived as it was getting dark, disembarking from the #5 train at the HUB at 3rd Avenue, 149th Street and Willis in the neighborhood of Melrose. I walked north a couple of blocks and took a left, coming upon the Doc Film Center which is housed in a three story building that looks to be in the neighborhood of a century old.

The HUB at 3rd Avenue, 149th Street and Willis / Melrose Avenue intersection was once referred to as the Times Square of the Bronx. It is still a fairly robust shopping district during the daytime, but after hours when the stores close, it has a sort of abandoned feel. I went in knowing that the crime rate in the Bronx, like the rest of the city, is down significantly versus prior years.

In the past five years, according to the Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz, the murder rate for the entire Bronx has been below 100. This is in a borough that is home to 1.471 million, so the murder rate is below 1 murder for every 14,710 people in the Bronx. It’s worth adding that a third of Bronx murders are from gang related violence, which sometimes includes collateral damage.

 

Architecture Near the Hub in Melrose: 1900 - 1930

melrose neighborhood bronx architecture bronx near hub melrose neighborhood bronxThe NYPD has been having some good success in taking down gangs in Bronx as well as NYC. In March of 2016, they reportedly completed the biggest bust in the Bronx, capturing 89 gang members. There are numerous places in Manhattan and Brooklyn that are far more dangerous, but Bronx historically has been given the worst reputational rap, and that impression, while changing, still lingers. I attribute it to LOCAL TV NEWS COVERAGE, which seems to PRIMARILY report crime stories when covering the Bronx.

As I walked to the Doc Film Center I observed the architecture around which I found myself surrounded. The Hub heyday was back in the early 1900’s running into the 1930’s when the Great Depression hit. Thus many of the buildings in the area are from that time period, which to me, is what I’ve come to think of as New York classical architecture and building. They made them quite well back then, as America was flexing its economic strength.

Inside the Doc Film Center I walked along the wooden floors to a large room with incredibly high ceilings, like what you would expect to find in a high school gym. There were chairs lined up looking toward the front of the building where the speaker had already begun his presentation.

What followed was a journey into the drug wars. As Carlos Villalon took us on a journey through the South American jungles, into Coca: The Lost War on Drugs …


Feast of St Anthony at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church in Belmont near Arthur Avenue in the Bronx | feast of st anthony our lady of mount carmel church belmont neighborhood bronx nyc italian neighborhoods bronx italian restaurants bronx
Feast of St Anthony at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church in Belmont near Arthur Avenue in the Bronx

Feast of St Anthony in the Bronx

Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church Celebrates the Feast of St Anthony in the Arthur Avenue & Belmont Neighborhood of the Bronx

September 18, 2018 / Belmont Neighborhood Bronx / Things To in the Bronx / Bronx Restaurants / Bronx Buzz NYC.

 

Around the beginning of the summer I had the pleasure of attending the 112th annual Feast of St Anthony at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church at 627 East 187th Street in the Belmont neighborhood of the Bronx. The affair began on Wednesday June 13th and ran through Sunday, June 17th.

I arrived on a Saturday at the triangle of streets joining Cresent Avenue, Cambreleng Avenue & 187th Street in the Little Italy section of the Belmont neighborhood in the Bronx. I shot some video capturing some of the rides, games, raffles, food and entertainment, which was present every night of the fair.

 



Bronx Farmers Mkts, Street Fairs, Member Events Calendar

* Click here for reports about Bronx street fairs, Bronx farmers markets, Bronx shopping venues and restaurants in the Bronx.

* Click here for free summer movies in the Bronx, free summer theater in the Bronx and free summer concerts in the Bronx.


Pregones Theater La Casita Block Party

Pregones Theater Hosted the La Casita Block Party of Poets, Musicians & Artists & a bit of Pregones Theater History

August 6, 2018 / Concourse Neighborhood / Bronx Theater / Bronx Neighborhoods / Bronx Buzz NYC.

bronx things to do bronxOn Sunday I made my way over to the Pregones Theater in the Concourse neighborhood of the Bronx. Pregones is located at 575 Walton Street, only a couple of blocks from Hostos College and the Post Office in the Bronx. Today was their annual block party, the origins of which, date back to the early 2000's. Pregones Theater moved to this location on Walton Street in the Concourse neighborhood in 2005.

It's worth mentioning that Pregones Theater has been serving the Bronx community of actors, actresses, producers, directors, playwrights and their audiences for nearly four decades. Pregones was started in 1979 and recently [2015 - 2017?] merged with another theater company, Puerto Rican Traveling Theater, to become the cultural institution that it is today.

The Puerto Rican Traveling Theater began in 1967 and helped give birth to the careers of Raul Julia and Miriam Colon, and recently merged with Pregones. Today Pregones Theater / The Puerto Rican Traveling Theater has venues in both Bronx and Manhattan.

As I arrived I noticed their colorful psychedelic house, the Casita, erected as the backdrop for the stage where performers would take flight to delight the audience. It was around 4 pm and a poet, I know it, was speaking, sweet talking, sugary, short arias of verbalized visuals whose acoustical imagery was as stimulating and winding as a quick jazzy beat. Too fast, to fully comprehend, the details of which lie within.

bronx things to do bronxI remember a subway ride, some history, a street scene, but you really had to be there to get the full gist. You missed. But they'll be back next year and they have numerous performances throughout the year.

Along the sidewalks vendors were selling unique - possibly Bronx made, clothing, cosmetics, jewelry, pottery, purses, knapsacks, paper products and other little finds, many of which you might be hard pressed to find elsewhere.

I stepped inside the theater to check it out. It's a well kept, spacious theater, with seating for somewhere between 50 to 100. And a hall of fame showing accolades for performances and performers of years past.

The folks were friendly and it was definitely an artsy, eclectic and friendly crowd. There were also folks there from Lincoln Center Out of Doors, who in part sponsored the block party performances. And Pregones Theater / The Puerto Rican Traveling Theater also performed down at Lincoln Center on Saturday, August 4th at 12 noon in Hearst Plaza, as part of their relationship with Lincoln Center Out of Doors.

By the way, 'pregones' in Spanish, means 'cries' in English. But nobody was crying today.

Hasta luego.


The Puerto Rican Parade NYC

Tens of Thousands of Puerto Ricans Celebrate Their Culture

puerto rican parade nyc photosJune 11, 2018 / Upper East Side Neighborhood / Harlem Neighborhood / Manhattan Parades NYC / Manhattan Buzz NYC.

Puerto Rican Street Fair Spanish Harlem

One thing you could never accuse New York Puerto Ricans of, is a lack of pride in their cultural roots. On Saturday there was a huge street fair in Spanish Harlem, lasting most of the day, along a nearly 20 block stretch of Third Avenue between 103rd and 122nd streets in east Harlem.

 

East Harlem used to be the destination for Puerto Ricans coming to New York. And while there's still a large Puerto Rican community there, I think there may be an even larger community in the central Bronx whose Borough President is Ruben Diaz, whose father, NYC City Councilmember Ruben Diaz, Sr. came from Bayamon, Puerto Rico. So while some of the population may have moved, Puerto Ricans came from around the city and far beyond, to congregate on Saturday and Sunday, and the bask in the atmosphere of their cultural roots.

 

Puerto Rican Parade on the Upper East Side Manhattan

116th street fair spanish harlem street festival st fair east harlem spanish harlem photosThere was food, shopping, music, entertainment and dancing at the street fair on Saturday, and minus the food and shopping, the music, dancing and entertainment were also on display at the huge Puerto Rican parade in Manhattan on Sunday. Numerous floats as well as marching groups of dancers and musicians and social groups joined together to make the parade one long display of Puerto Rica's eclectic mix of African, Latin and American cultures.

 

American Puerto Ricans call themselves Boricuas and everything else is just Bochinche [gossip]. We'll delve more deeply into the Puerto Rican community in Manhattan and the Bronx as time passes.

 


NYC Landlord Harassments Continue

NYCCM Helen Rosenthal Hosts Housing Clinic to Inform Renters of Their Rights

manhattan things to do nycMay 29, 2018 / Upper West Side Neighborhood / Manhattan Real Estate / Manhattan Neighborhoods / Manhattan Buzz NYC.

On Wednesday, May 25th I went to the Goddard Riverside Community Center on Columbus Avenue at 88th Street to attend a housing clinic designed to inform renters of their rights.

***The following introduction is based on prior research done by me, and was not information provided at the housing clinic. I'll let you know when I segue out of my preamble and into the housing clinic.***

Over the past decade landlords appear to have become increasingly aggressive in trying to wriggle out of NYC and NYS rent stabilization regulations, that govern the rental payments under which about two million New Yorkers live.

It is my understanding that the government contributed land and / or financing to build or repair the buildings governed by NYC / NYS rent stabilization laws in exchange for the pricing rights on rent stabilized units. Many of the new landlords who have acquired rent stablized buildings, may possibly be in violation of approaching their business contract(s) in good faith, as the definition of good faith according to Wikipedia is:

"In contract law, the implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing is a general presumption that the parties to a contract will deal with each other honestly, fairly, and in good faith, so as to not destroy the right of the other party or parties to receive the benefits of the contract. It is implied in every contract in order to reinforce the express covenants or promises of the contract. A lawsuit (or a cause of action) based upon the breach of the covenant may arise when one party to the contract attempts to claim the benefit of a technical excuse for breaching the contract, or when he or she uses specific contractual terms in isolation in order to refuse to perform his or her contractual obligations, despite the general circumstances and understandings between the parties. When a court or triar or fact interprets a contract, there is always an "implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing" in every written agreement."

What is at stake, throughout the city, is literally hundreds of millions and more likely billions of dollars in - rental benefits or rental income streams - depending on which side of the struggle you're on. The landlords appear to be trying - using the torturtous side effects of construction including noise, health risk dust [inhalation], privacy loss and apartment functional loss - to wrest away the billions of dollars of rental pricing rights benefits from tenants to be pocketed by the landlords themselves. Given the high dollar value of what's at stake - including people's homes - this seems like attempted grand larceny, especially in cases where landlords are breaking the law to achieve their goals.

This will be continued at a later date. Including the segue into the information provided by the Housing Clinic to inform tenants of their rights.

Tenants' Rights March & Rally - June 14th Midtown at 4.30 pm

P.S. There's a March & Rally scheduled for June 14th, beginning at 4.30 pm, at the NY Public Library at 5th Avenue and 40th Street. They plan to march to Governor Cuomo's office at 3rd Avenue and East 41st Street. For details contact info@realrentreform.org or call 212.979.6958. All but one of the No IDC NY senatorial candidates have been invited to participate, and there's a possibility that NYS gubernatorial candidate Cynthia Nixon will be there too - as this seems to coincide with her reasons for challenging Governor Cuomo.


Islamic Fashion in the Bronx

Bronx Islamic Clothing Store for Sale

May 21, 2018 / Parkchester Neighborhood / Bronx Neighborhoods / Holidays in the Bronx / Bronx Buzz NYC.

bronx things to do bronxIn early May I traveled to the Parkchester neighborhood, to visit one of the Bronx newest Islamic clothing stores, Islam Fashion. With Ramadan only a couple of weeks away, the store proprietor was busy making preparations as Ramadan is the holiest month of the year - and just as during the holidays for Christians, it is also a very social time of the year.

The store, Islam Fashion, was started in the late 1990's [circa 1998] by an enterprising Egyptian immigrant, Mohamed Zohny, who I had met in Queens about a decade ago. Mohamed is one of those legendary entrepreneurial immigrants that one hears about - that keeps the American dream alive - both here and abroad.

Mohamed Zhony - Egyptian American Entrepreneur

Mohamed rolled the dice and immigrated to New York in 1979, at the age of 37, having left a position working at one of the airports in Egypt. When he arrived, he began working in a Lebanese restaurant washing dishes. Three years later in 1982, risking the savings he made from dishwashing, Mohamed started a falafel food truck at 51st Street and 5th Avenue.

Starting an Entrepreneurial Business on the Midtown Manhattan Streets

bronx things to do bronxFor fourteen years Mohamed made falafels out of his food truck and one might say he became a bit of a falafel food truck legend. He was photographed and written about in several glossy magazines, including one where he had his photo taken by famous photo journalist Lou Bopp.

Perhaps my favorite account of Mohamed at this time was the following in the 'Grub' section of a popular NYC magazine.

"Falafel stands abound … [at] Rockefeller Center … during lunchtime. Naturally they run the full gamut of barely edible to scintillatingly delicious. Second place for the title of best falafel is Zohny who has a cart on the corner of 5th Avenue and 51st Street. Not only are his falafels moister and fuller than the competition, but he has also developed falafel assembly into an art. It's a spectator sport to marvel as Zohny choreographs his falafel preparation like a wind-up doll. He can make the chick pea balls while dropping lettuce and tomato and heating the pita bread."

In 1996 then Mayor Rudy Giuliani started making changes to the rules governing traffic and food carts, so Mohamed decided to exit the business. Within two years, Mohamed had embarked on a third adventure, again investing his savings to purchase and then sell Islamic clothing on the Upper East Side on what I understood to be a sort of person-to-person basis.

Opens Islam Fashion Clothing Business in Manhattan with Stores in Brooklyn, Queens & the Bronx

bronx things to do bronxWithin another two years, in the year 2000, Mohamed signed a lease in Brooklyn and opened an Islamic clothing store there. Nine years later he opened a second store in 2009 in Astoria, where I met him. He's done a bit of advertising on Queens Buzz over the years and I have always found Mohamed to have a friendly smile on his face.

During this time I have had the opportunity to watch him do a bit of business here and there, buying and selling Islamic clothing in his shop. He would invite sellers to sit down for tea, chat and haggle a bit about quality and price, and then settle on a price and complete the deal. It felt like time traveling into Egypt in the space of a few minutes.

In recent years Mohamed, now 75 years old, has begun winding down ... at least a bit. He closed his Brooklyn store due to rising rents, and moved his Astoria store to Parkchester just last year - again due to rising rents. He opened in Parkchester a few months ago and has begun building yet another retail business. Even to this day Mohamed greets the public with a welcoming "Salam Alaikum", which in English means "Peace to you".

Islam Fashion is located at 1701 White Plains Road at Van Nest Avenue in Parkchester. Mohamed is now in the hospital and plans to sell his business. If interested you can reach him via Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/islamfashioninc/

I hope and pray that Mohamed has a speedy recovery.


Arthur Avenue - Little Italy in the Bronx

Arthur Avenue Still has Multi-Generational Family Businesses

bronx shops shopping arthur avenue shops bronxMay 15, 2018 / Belmont Neighborhood in the Bronx / Arthur Avenue Restaurants Bronx / Bronx Things To Do / Bronx Buzz NYC.

A bit over a week ago I headed up to the Arthur Avenue restaurant section of the Belmont neighborhood in the Bronx. Throughout most of the twentieth century, Arthur Avenue was a densely populated Italian section of the Bronx, full of Italian restaurants, shops and Italian culture. By the early 21st century, where we are now, many of the Italians had moved out into the suburbs or into other parts of the city - but that said there's still a very strong Italian presence, including some of the multi-generational Italian family businesses.

Arthur Avenue is more than a destination for those seeking Italian culture in the Bronx, as Fordham University is only blocks away. Oftentimes Fordham students can be seen milling about in the cafes, restaurants and shops, alongside long time residents from the neighborhood. I've come to view the Arthur Avenue Retail Market, founded in 1940, as sort of the epicenter or hub of Arthur Avenue.

Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia reportedly spearheaded the development of the Arthur Avenue Retail Market while he was Mayor in an effort to incent the popular, low-priced, but somewhat unsanitary, street pushcart businesses to move in off the streets. The Arthur Avenue Retail Market was, in some measure, one of the early malls, where various independent vendors sold their wares.

Within the same block and blocks, there are also many Italian retail businesses that have survived the economic vagaries of time. Among them is ...

More to come, including photos, later this week.


Port Morris Real Estate Development

The Bronx Neighborhood of Port Morris is Experiencing a Real Estate Development Renaissance

May 7, 2018 / Port Morris Neighborhood / Bronx Real Estate & Business / Bronx Neighborhoods / Bronx Buzz NYC.

bronx things to do bronxLast Sunday I went exploring two of the neighborhoods in the south Bronx. This report will focus on Port Morris, which is at the southern most end of the Bronx and is found along the Harlem River and the East River.

Port Morris has a long storied history, dating back to colonial times. Given its proximity to Manhattan [just over the Harlem River] and accessibility via the East River and Harlem River, Port Morris was geographically well positioned to be one of the great waterfronts. In fact one of the Morrises had this in mind in an earlier period and planned to make Port Morris competitive with the New York City Harbor and the Lower Manhattan docks. But alas it was not meant to be.

In the mid to late 1800's the piano making business was one of the biggest manufacturing industries in New York City. Piano factories lined the East River in Astoria and in the Bronx. By the mid 1900's the piano business was on the decline, being replaced by radio, television and the like as the primary source of home entertainment.

By the late 20th century the southern Bronx was in decline, but many of the old manufacturing buildings of a bygone era still remained. By the early 21st century southern Bronxians began to witness a growing interest in the Port Morris and Mott Haven neighborhoods due to an evolving business, social and economic climate in New York City.

I'll post more on Tuesday, May 8th.


5 Boro Bike Ride Returns Sunday

Bike New York Organizes NYC Bike Ride & Bike Expo New York

5 boro bike ride nyc new york bike expo nycApril 30, 2018 / Manhattan Neighborhoods / Bronx Neighborhoods / Queens Neighborhoods / Brooklyn Neighborhoods / Staten Island Neighborhoods / Gotham Buzz NYC.

This story includes information about the upcoming 5 Boro Bike Ride on Sunday, as well as the Bike Expo New York which precedes it on Friday & Saturday in Red Hook. As of this report, the temperatures are expected to be in the 60's and the chances of rain appear slim. But bear in mind that the forecast probability of 20% chance of rain last Friday, turned into rain on Saturday evening, so check the weather as we get closer in.

 

Bike New York 5 Boro Bike Ride Route

Since 1977, every first Sunday of May, Bike New York has organized and promoted the 5 Boro Bike Ride. The ride begins in lower Manhattan, sweeps northward across the Harlem River Bridge to the Bronx, circles back across the Third Avenue Bridge to Manhattan, where it begins its southward trek crossing the Queensboro Bridge into Queens, heading south to Brooklyn after a quick stop north to Astoria Park, and then comes down past the Brooklyn Navy Yards, continuing southward along the west side of 5 boro bike ride nyc new york bike expo nycBrooklyn, to the Verrazano Narrows Bridge where it crosses over to the Fort Wadsworth neighborhood in Staten Island before terminating in the St. George neighborhood at the Staten Island Ferry.

 

Proceeds from Non-Profit New York Bike Ride go Toward Sustainable Transportation Efforts

The now famous bike ride was capped at 32,000 riders I believe sometime in the 1990’s, where it still stands today. One report noted that the 5 Boro Bike ride is one of – if not the largest - non-profit bike rides in the nation. The proceeds go to Bike New York programs which are designed to teach people about sustainable transportation, most notably bicycle riding and bike maintenance and safety. Another report noted that the NYPD had considered [don’t know the outcome] charging the organization $1 million for erecting, maintaining and terminating road closures during the New York 40 mile family-friendly bike ride.

 

Bike New York Bicyclist Outreach in all Five NYC Boroughs

Bike New York has offices in all five NYC boroughs. In 2015 their cyclist safety and bike maintenance programs reached 15,000 New Yorkers. And they are the organizers of the Bike Expo New York being held at Pier 12 in Brooklyn on Friday and Saturday [see details in rest of this story].


Nature's Wonders at Wave Hill in the Bronx

Historic Wave Hill in Riverdale Overlooks the Hudson River

north bronx neigborhood west bronx neighborhood bronx neighborhoodsApril 23, 2018 / Riverdale Neighborhood / Bronx Parks / Bronx Buzz NYC.

Wave Hill is a 28 acre estate, in the western section of the Riverdale neighborhood in the Bronx, overlooking the Hudson River. The estate was built in 1843 by William Lewis Morris, a lawyer, to accommodate his large family. Morris was a descendant of one of the Bronx and America's founding families, which included a 17th century colonialist who migrated here following the Cromwellian Wars in Britain, a contributor and signer of the Declaration of Independence, and a vast land holding family in the Bronx.

Wave Hill evolved over the years, starting as a Georgian Revival home, but later converted to a Victorian manor by Publisher William Henry Appleton [1866 - 1869]. Appleton purchased a section of the estate from Morris's heirs following his death.

President Theodore Roosevelt [1870 - 1871], author Mark Twain [1901 - 1903], Italian Conductor Arturo Toscanini [1942 - 1945], and the British delegation to the UN hosted John Foster Dulles, Konrad Adenauer and Queen Elizabeth [1950 - 1956] over numerous summers there. The Wave Hill of today includes what was once two estates, which were merged by Financier turned Conservationist George W. Perkins in 1903. Perkins added the greenhouses and the second house of the estate which I believe [unconfirmed] was called Glyndor. It burned in the early 1920's and was replaced by a smaller Glyndor II, completed in 1927. Wave Hill was inherited by daughter Dorothy Woosley Freeman and her husband Edward.

Wave Hill was donated to New York City in 1960, designated a New York City Landmark in 1966, added to the National Registry of Historic Places in 1983 and added to the Riverdale Historic District in 1990.

In 2011 Wave Hill closed for two years for renovations. In 2013 it reopened, with enhanced facilities that included upgrades to the Sally and Gilbert Kerlin Learning Center where family art projects are conducted, and enhanced lighting and sound [2014] in the Amour Hall which is host to musical performances. A new space, the Sarah and Geoffrey Gund Theater was added where lectures are held and films are shown and the cafe was expanded and the dining room renovated.

Today all areas are used to accommodate public programs, many of which include a fee, and many of which are free with admission. Local artists, musicians and performers are oftentimes showcased. We periodically post their events on the weekends, so stay tuned.

Sources for this story include Wikipedia.org / LivingPlaces.com / WaveHill.org.


Click here for reports about Bronx holiday events and here for Bronx holiday markets.


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Bronx Things To Do Martin Luther King Day Weekend - Events Bronx NYC | things to do martin luther king day weekend bronx nyc things to do mott haven concourse fordham belmont van cortlandt park riverdale bedford park melrose hunts point parkchester westchester square schuyler throgs neck bronx MLK day weekend bronx nyc
Bronx Things To Do Martin Luther King Day Weekend - Events Bronx NYC

MLK Day Weekend Events in the Bronx NYC

Things To Do in the Bronx over the Martin Luther King Day Weekend

January 14, 2020 / Things To Do Bronx NYC / Bronx Buzz NYC.

Weather. The Temperature highs will range between 30 and 40 throughout the three day weekend. The temperature lows will be in the low 20's throughout the weekend - except on Saturday when the low will be in the high 30's. Rain or Snow is forecast on Saturday, but NOT on Friday, Sunday & Monday. Winds will range from 10 - 15 mph all weekend. The Humidity will be around 50% throughout the weekend, except on Friday when it will be in the low 30% range. Click for Bronx Weather.

Click here for Bronx Buzz - things to do Martin Luther King Day Weekend in the Bronx.

Brief History of Martin Luther King Holiday in NYC

Martin Luther King, Jr. was a Baptist Minister who became the leading voice for African Americans' non-violent civil rights movement beginning in the mid 1950's through to his assassination in 1968. In 1983, the third Monday of every year was set aside to honor Martin Luther King for his service to the nation. The third Monday was chosen, as it was the nearest Monday to the anniversary of King's birthday, which was January 15, 1929.

Martin Luther King Day has grown to take on an even larger meaning, as it is oftentimes referred to as a day on, versus a day off. Organizations around the city and nation have used the day to call people into action to address the needs of the community through volunteering and service.

Martin Luther King Holiday Special Events in the Bronx NYC

On Saturday from 10 am - 4 pm the Food Bank of NYC is organizing an event entitled Done in a Day from 10 am - 4 pm at 355 Food Center Drive in the Hunts Point neighbohood of the Bronx. The program attracts volunteers who will give some of their time for the Food Bank projects.

On Sunday from 4.30 - 7 pm the New Life Rehobeth Church at 1375 Mace Avenue in the Bronx is hosting a movie with dessert for the whole family and it's free.

On Monday there's an MLK Day of Service from 9 am - 4 pm at the Riverdale Y at 5626 Arlington Avenue in the Riverdale neighborhood of the Bronx. The day of service attempts to tackle various social and community problems.

On Monday from 10 am - 2 pm the East Bronx IPC [Episcopalian / Anglican] invites folks to attend their MLK Day of service and social gathering at 781 Castle Hill Avenue in the Bronx. They collect donations for scholarships, some of which I believe are awarded on that day [unconfirmed].

On Monday, January 20, 2020, there's a Community Interfaith Service at Trinity Baptist Church to commemorate the legacy of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. at 808 East 224th Street between Barnes & Bronxwood Avenues beginning at 10 am. All are welcome but please rsvp at 718.590.3989 or email smalave@bronxbp.nyc.gov. Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz Jr. is expected to be in attendance.


Things To Do MLK Day Weekend in the Bronx NYC

Things To Do in the Bronx Over The Martin Luther King Day Weekend

January 20, 2019 / Things To Do in the Bronx / Bronx Buzz NYC.

bronx things to do MLK day weekend bronx martin luther king day weekend nyc

Bronx Museums & Cultural Institutions - Things To Do over the Martin Luther King Holiday Weekend

Bronx is home to two great institutions borne in pursuit of preservation and understanding the natural world around us - the New York Botanical Gardens and the Bronx Zoo. A segment of the Enid A. Haupt Observatory at the NY Botanical Gardens is shown in the photo at right.

The Bronx Zoo is located at at 2300 Southern Blvd near the Belmont, Fordham Manor, West Farms, Pelham Parkway and Allerton neighborhoods of the Bronx.

The New York Botanical Gardens is located at at 2900 Southern Blvd near the Norwood, Fordham, Belmont and Allerton neighborhoods of the Bronx.

Bronx Historical Sites / Bronx History - Things To Do over the Martin Luther King Day Weekend

The Bronx have a number of historical sites which are open to the public on weekends, and sometimes weekdays. The Bronx Historical Society is located in the Valentine-Varian house at 3309 Bainbridge Avenue at 208th Street in the Norwood neighborhood of the Bronx. The Valentine-Varian house is the oldest remaining farmhouse in the borough and second oldest house, dating back to 1758. The Bronx Historical Society hosts a number of exhibits as well as an array of programs throughout the year.

There's also the Van Cortlandt House in Van Cortland Park, which is a beautiful colonial home of one of the Dutch settlers. It was built in 1748 and is the oldest house in the Bronx borough. It is located at Broadway and West 246th Street in Van Cortlandt Park in the Bronx at the end of the #1 subway line.

The Bartow Pell Mansion is also worthy of a visit. It was erected in 1836 and is a Greek revival architecture style home - one of the last of that area / era. The Bartow Pell Mansion Museum is pretty active in its programming which includes cultural and historical. It is located at 895 Shore Road, across from the golf course in Pelham Bay Park.

And there's Wave Hill in Riverdale. It's the site of beautiful gardens overlooking the Hudson River. They offer regular programming including concerts, garden walks in the better weather and talks. It is located at 649 West 249th Street in the Hudson Hill section of the Riverdale neighborhood of the Bronx.




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Farmers Markets & Street Fairs in the Bronx

bronx street fairs bronx street festivals bronx March 24, 2019 / Bronx Farmers Markets / Bronx Street Fairs / Bronx Buzz NYC.

A few Bronx farmers markets might be open year round, but most of them are seasonal. Some of the seasonal Bronx farmers markets will begin opening in the Spring of 2019, with the rest of them opening no later than the first couple of weeks in July of 2019. Click here to view the schedules of many of the farmers markets in the Bronx.

Bronx street fairs, on the other hand, are entirely seasonal. Some of them hit the streets as early as April 2019. The number of Bronx street fairs rises during the late spring and continues through the dog days of summer [July / August], including into the late part of the Fall. By the end of November the Bronx street fairs go on hiatus, with a few returning as early as April. Click here to view a full schedule of the Bronx street fairs.


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Click here to view our report about Bronx Halloween parties NYC and Bronx New Years parties NYC.


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