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NYC Village Halloween Parade

A Brief History of the Village Halloween Parade in Manhattan

village halloween parade nycOctober 31, 2016 / West Village Neighborhood / Holiday Events in Manhattan / Manhattan Buzz.

The Village Halloween Parade is the only nighttime parade in New York City, and according to Wikipedia, the only nighttime parade in the entire country.


The Village Halloween Parade first began in 1974 when a Manhattan puppeteer, Ralph Lee, organized artists, musicians and theater people in a celebration of the arts in the West Village neighborhood of Manhattan. In the early years the parade was cast as street theater and it was not only wildly reflective of the times, but also outrageously reflective of the gay scene in the West Village in the 1970's.


Within a few years the parade expanded its route out of the West Village into Washington Square, and within ten years the parade had greatly outgrown the Village neighborhood streets and was moved onto Sixth Avenue.


village halloween parade nycAs the Village Halloween Parade grew in size, some of its outrageousness was lost. The ability to break through was lost possibly because over the years the American cultural scene has continually opened up, and thus it has become increasingly difficult to shock the public. And possibly because there are so many theatrical vignettes in the Village Halloween Parade, that it's harder to break through.


Each year it seems puppeteers continue to make their showing, reflective of the Village Halloween Parade origins. And artists, theatrical people and musicians continue to participate in the parade, as do many New Yorkers seeking a spot on the street scene stage.


The parade route begins at Houston and 6th Avenue and heads north to 14th Street, traversing the entire length of the West Village. Every year hundreds of thousands line the streets, seeking to enjoy the visual, musical and theatrical feast. It's a bit like the American version of Mardi Gras, even though Halloween itself originated as an Irish Harvest Festival over a millenium ago.


Céad míle fáilte & have a Happy Halloween.

Free Things To Do Manhattan NYC Free Shakespeare Summer Theater Manhattan Upper East Side UES Upper West Side UWS Midtown Tribeca West Village East Vi | Free Things To Do Manhattan NYC - Free Summer theater Manhattan Upper East Side UES Upper West Side UWS Midtown West Village East Village Soho Tribeca free summer theatre Shakespeare in Central Park manhattan nyc
Free Things To Do Manhattan NYC Free Shakespeare Summer Theater Manhattan Upper East Side UES Upper West Side UWS Midtown Tribeca West Village East Vi

Free Things To Do In Manhattan - Free Summer Theater & Shakespeare in the Park

Free Theater In Manhattan Parks - Upper East Side UES, Upper West Side UWS, Midtown, East Village, West Village, SoHo & Tribeca NYC

August 3, 2016 / Manhattan Neighborhoods / Manhattan Theater Theatre District / Manhattan Things To Do / Manhattan Buzz.  This report includes a list of some of the free things to do in Queens this summer. 

Click here to view a listing of the dates and times of free things to do in Manhattan - free theater in Manhattan parks.

On the Campaign Trail & 'Feeling the Bern'

Sanders Introduces Socialism to the American People

Updated April 19, 2016 from 4/15/16 / Village Neighborhood / Manhattan Politics / News Analysis & Opinion / Manhattan Buzz.

bernie sanders queens nyc photosIf nothing else, this has been an interesting presidential election cycle. It's not 'reality TV', its televised reality.

The Republicans attracted most of the attention early on, thanks mostly to Donald J. Trump's shock jock presidential candidacy. A candidacy that turned presidential debates about public policy into name calling, discussions of poll numbers & penis size, and relentless barrages of vituperative insults.

The Donald has, in his campaign, essentially told us to forgeddabout the ballooning government deficit, a dated and at times crumbling infrastructure, education, the shrinking middle class and global climate change. The Donald has distracted us from an intelligent discussion about these 'loser' subjects, and told us that he's going to rip 12 million people [the equivalent of about 5% of the nation's population] away from their families by deporting them, punishing women for getting abortions, and erecting a wall along the border with Mexico which he tells us the Mexicans are going to pay for.

Does Trump really think this is how to 'make America great again'? But I digress.

Click here to see photos of the Bernie Sanders rally in Washington Square Park, as well as a story about the contest between Sanders and Clinton.

Designing for Quality Retail & Community Use

Design Trust Unveils ‘Laying the Groundwork’ at the Center for Architecture

March 1, 2016 / Village NYC / Manhattan Building Design Issues / Manhattan Buzz.

design trust at center for architecture nycI had an opportunity to attend the introductory presentation of ‘Laying the Groundwork’, which was heralded as a seminal document put together under the auspices of the Design Trust in Manhattan. The event was held at the Center for Architecture at 536 LaGuardia Place, just south of Washington Square Park.

The Design Trust was founded in 1995 by Andrea Woodner, the daughter of Ian Woodner who founded the Jonathan Woodner Company, which Ian named after his son Jonathan – Andrea’s brother. The company was renamed Woodner and is a diversified real estate management [2,500 units] and development company in the Washington, D.C. and New York metro markets.

Andrea was first and foremost a sculptor. She later obtained a Masters Degree in Architecture from Columbia University and then went on to found the Design Trust with the intent to fuse the expertise of designers with the use of public space. She defined public space as “anywhere you don’t need a key to get into”. Andrea stepped down earlier this year as the Board President of Design Trust and was replaced by Eric Rothman, President of HR & A Advisors, a consulting firm.

The thrust of Design Trust has been to marry private design work with the development of public space to create win / win situations. The following is a summary of some of their most significant achievements since the organization was founded.

We'll post more at a later date.

American Abstract Artists - Morris-Warren Art Gallery Lower East Side LES | morris warren gallery american abstract artists lower east side art galleries LES les
American Abstract Artists - Morris-Warren Art Gallery Lower East Side LES

American Abstract Artists Exhibit

Visible Histories Exhibit at the Morris-Warren Gallery LES

February 1, 2016 / Lower East Side Neighborhood / Manhattan Art Galleries & Artists / Manhattan Buzz.

I attended the opening reception for a new exhibit at the Morris Warren Gallery at 171 Chrystie Street, just east of SoHo on the Lower East Side. The exhibit is entitled Visible Histories and it features 60 artists who are members of the American Abstract Artists group.

In the early part of the 20th century, American abstract artists found it difficult to gain recognition and respect – and hence venues – where they could exhibit their work. It’s important to remind readers that widespread use of television and the internet were many decades away, and that even print publishing was just beginning to emerge as a mass media. Thus art shows and the attendant publicity they generated, were critical to the emergence of new art forms and new artists.

The first notable American abstract art show opened in 1913 at the 69th Infantry Armory at Lexington Avenue & 26th Street. Two decades later in 1936, the American Abstract Artists group was founded by New York City artists seeking to find exhibit venues and recognition for their nascent abstract art form. The American Abstract Artists group went on to survive the remainder of the Great Depression, WWII and today is one of the oldest, continuously operating artist groups in the nation.

Follow us to the next page as we continue our journey into the New York City art world. Our report includes a bit of history about the evolution of American art and modern art in Manhattan as well as a closer look at the Visible Histories exhibit including excerpts from discussions with the curator, gallery owners and one of the artists.

Click here for the American Abstract Artists at the Morris-Warren Gallery on the Lower East Side LES.

Vintage Subway Trains & Rides in Manhattan & Queens

vintage subway train schedule dates vintage subway train stations times vintage subways manhattan nyc queensDecember 21, 2015 / Manhattan Neighborhoods / Manhattan History / Things To Do Manhattan / Manhattan Buzz.

I decided to take a ride on one of the Vintage Subway Cars that run through Manhattan & Queens on each Sunday in December from 10 am to 5 pm. You can ride the vintage subway cars for the regular fare of $2.75, even though back in the day, the ride only cost 10 cents. It's a fun outing and some of the people dressed up for the occasion, only a bit of which is shown in the video.

Click here to read the rest of our report about riding the Vintage Subway Trains & Rides in Manhattan & Queens over the holidays, including the subway lines and stops to which it pertains, as well as the approximate schedule as they only run about every hour and a half.

In 2015 the last day of this special offer is Sunday, December 27th.

The Tenement Museum Lower East Side NYC

A More Holistic View of 19th & 20th Century Immigrant Life

tenement museum les LES nycOctober 5, 2015 / Bowery Neighborhood & East Village Neigiborhood / Manhattan History NYC / Manhattan Buzz.

I had the opportunity to visit the Tenement Museum on the Lower East Side at the end of August. What I experienced was the walking through a time warp and into the personal lives of European immigrants between about the mid 19th century until nearly the mid 20th century.

It was a journey through time, as we saw many of the engineering and technological changes that made people's lives more comfortable, while simultaneously witnessing the economic struggles of a few select working class folks - and I might add - in a manner similar to what I can see today in many of the working class immigrants' lives in Queens.

It's a tale of hardship, endurance and ultimately of prevailing in spite of circumstances to improve one's lot in life. Not the American dream, but not the American nightmare either.

Charlie Parker Jazz Festival

SummerStage Jazz Festival In The East Village & Harlem

sir shadow drawings charlie parker jazz fest east village nycSeptember 1, 2015 / East Village Neighborhood / Live Music Manhattan / Manhattan Buzz.

I attended the 23rd annual Charlie Parker Jazz Festival at Tompkins Square in the East Village. The Charlie Parker Jazz Festival is shared between Harlem and the East Village – two neighborhoods once frequented by Charlie Parker.

The jazz festival began in 1992 through the efforts of the City Parks Foundation, which, among other things, also organizes the SummerStage concerts at various parks in all five boroughs throughout New York City. SummerStage is the largest free concert organization in the nation.

sir shadow drawings charlie parker jazz fest east village nycCharlie Parker, along with Louis Armstrong, is considered one of the top jazz musicians of all time. Louis was a trumpeter who traveled the world, while Charlie was a saxophonist who primarily played in Harlem.

Charlie Parker was born on August 29, 1920 in Kansas. He played sax in Kansas and nearby Missouri towns until leaving the stix to play in Chicago. Eventually he moved to New York and became a regular on the Harlem and New York City jazz and blues scene at a time when it was acoustically flourishing. Louis Armstrong, Dizzy Gillespie, Count Basie, Ella Fitzgerald, Billie Holliday and Charles Mingus were all on the scene.

Charlie spent the latter years of his life as a resident in the East Village. He would frequently go uptown to Harlem to play. Charlie had a heroin and alcohol problem which lead to his early demise at the age of 34.

The picture to your right was created by whose art I found along the wrought iron frences of Tompkins Square Park during the concert.

Click here to read the rest of our report including photos and a short video of the Charlie Parker Jazz Festival in Tompkins Square in the East Village neighborhood in August of 2015.

NYS Medical Marijuana Law & DPA

Drug Policy Alliance Reports First Deadline For Submissions Passes

marijuana reformJune 8, 2015 / Village Neighborhood & Midtown Neighborhood / Manhattan Issues / Manhattan Buzz.

I attended a forum on medical marijuana last week. It was sponsored by the Drug Policy Alliance, a non profit group, whose mission is to promote

"drug policies that are grounded in science, compassion, health and human rights".

During the course of this forum I found that there's a lot going on in this area - not just with regard to implementing the legalized use of marijuana for medical use - but in going signficantly beyond that milestone, to making it available to the general public by regulating it in a manner, of which the options range in similarity to: pharmaceuticals, alcohol or tobacco.

To be sure, as public perceptions and policy change, there are important concerns and issues associated with these changes that must be properly managed, or the results of these changes won't be beneficial to the community as the marijuana legalization advocates suggest - but rather could be just the opposite.

We'll have more on the Drug Policy Alliance forum held last week at ABC Carpets on Broadway.

Manhattan History NYC - East Village Historical Sites West Village NYC | east village history west village historical sites  manhattan history nyc village historical sites nyc manhattan
Manhattan History NYC - East Village Historical Sites West Village NYC

East Village History & West Village Historical Sites

East Village Neighborhood / East Village Historical Sites / Manhattan Buzz.

A Look At The History Of The West & East Village Neighborhoods

Manhattan Neighborhoods / Manhattan History / Gotham Buzz. The following provides both a history and links into some of the current day things to do in the East Village neighborhood and the West Village Neighborhood including schools, restaurants and shops. More will be added as time goes on.

Greenwich Village History – Dutch Farmlands – 1600’s

The area now covered by the western section of Greenwich Village was once farmland owned by the Dutch settlers. In 1664 the English won the colony from the Dutch in the war. At the time the area was somewhat separate from lower Manhattan.

Click here to read the rest of our report about the history of the West Village & East Village NYC including historical sites. Or click here to see a listing of things to do in the East Village & West Village NYC.

West Village & East Village Neighborhoods - Page Directory

nyc neighborhoods west & east village nycEast Village / West Village Neighborhood Directory - Links or Scroll Down

On Site Directory

east village things to do nyc west village things to do nyc

Things To Do East Village West Village NYC - Manhattan | things to do east village west village nyc manhattan things to do west village east village manhattan things to do east village west village nyc
Things To Do East Village West Village NYC - Manhattan

Things To Do In The East Village West Village NYC

West Village & East Village Events, Attractions & Neighborhood

West Village & East Village Neighborhoods / Manhattan Things To Do / Manhattan Buzz.

This section provides an overview of the main attractions on the Upper East Side. In this section we provide a look at the main cultural venues, tourist attractions, parks and facilities one can find on the Upper East Side neighborhood of Manhattan in NYC.


Click here for Things To Do In Manhattan NYC. And Things To Do In Manhattan Memorial Day Weekend and soon to come - Things To Do Labor Day Weekend in Manhattan.

Click here for the West Village & East Village history including historical sites in the Village.

Washington Square Art Fair | washington square art fair manhattan nyc art fairs art shows nyc manhattan
Washington Square Art Fair

Washington Square Art Fair

Artists & Artisans Spend Weekend Selling Wonders

May Memorial Day Weekend / Village Neighborhood NYC / Shops & Shopping Manhattan / Manhattan Buzz.

Over the three day Memorial Day Weekend, dozens of artists and artisans congregated along University Place between Washington Square Park and 13th Street in the Village. There, underneath the lily-white tents, they hung their works for the public to view and purchase. The artists come from near and far and provided a mélange of choices for the aesthetically aware.

I began my tour of the Washington Square Art Fair just north of the eastern corner of Washington Square Park. The white tents lined the sidewalks on both sides of the street, as the auto traffic had not been blocked. People were definitely out and about, as NYU had held commencement exercises earlier in the week, and the students were to be found en masse in Washington Square Park. But along University Place it wasn’t just the students who were browsing the Washington Square Art Fair, but also many native New Yorkers looking for objets d’art.

Generally the artists I photographed and interviewed were a bit older, but I plan to include several other exhibitors when I post the slide show to provide some view into the depth and breadth of the Washington Square Art Fair as a whole. The artists I conversed with had generally aged well, and the complexity and textured flavor of their interests and lives emerged in the aesthetics embedded in their works. These artists had stayed constant in their pursuit of aesthetic expression over the years, and their works evoked memories and scenes depicted in skillful portrayals of bygone eras, as well as of enthusiastic passions of the present.

Click here to view our report about the Washington Square Art Fair with photos.

Elizabeth Warren At Union Square Park Barnes & Noble Bookstore | elizabeth warren manhattan union square barnes & noble bookstore manhattan politics nyc
Elizabeth Warren At Union Square Park Barnes & Noble Bookstore

Elizabeth Warren @ Union Square

Capacity Crowd Considers A Fighting Chance

Are Buffett & Investment Bankers Trying To Pre-emptively Define Her As 'Angry' & 'Too Liberal' Before The Rest Of America Hears Her Speak?

April 6, 2015 / Village Neighborhood NYC / Government & Politics Manhattan / News Analysis & Opinion / Manhattan Buzz.

In the past few months I have overheard a number of people chatting about Elizabeth Warren, the Democratic Senator from Massachusetts. So when I heard that she would be speaking at the Union Square Barnes & Noble in late March of 2015, to promote the paperback release of her book entitled A Fighting Chance, I decided to see for myself what they were talking about.

Up until this time I knew little about Senator Warren except that she had retaken the Massachusetts Senate seat for Democrats - that Scott Brown had won for Republicans - shortly after the death of Democratic Senator Ted Kennedy.

I arrived a bit early to get my bearings, as there has been a growing groundswell of support for Senator Warren to run for President. Like Barack Obama in 2008, she would probably have to beat Hillary Clinton, even though Hillary has not yet formally announced that she's running.

manhattan politics government nycNonetheless, just like eight years ago, Hillary has already been anointed the Democratic candidate / victor by the mass media political polls and pundits. Queen Hillary's coronation may be premature, as she continues to slip in the polls versus her potential Republican rivals, including Prince Jeb - likely due to the email debacle, and perhaps a growing reminder of the Clinton family public dramas of years gone by.

Many of the seats facing the podium on the fourth floor were filled, while the remainder of them were filling up steadily. I had been told by someone earlier in the day, that most of the folks in the audience would likely be older people. So I was surprised to see that while the audience contained a number of older people [let's say over 50 / 60], a majority of those in attendance were actually younger people [under 40 / 50].

What follows is an account of the Elizabeth Warren speech - or shall I say her Law-School-like lecture - and the crowd's reaction to it. The report also includes a preliminary examination into why those in the investment banking sector, like Warren Buffett, seem uncomfortable with the idea of Elizabeth Warren's rise as a potential or eventual Democratic candidate for president. And at the end of the report we added a brief historical review of the front running Bush and Clinton family performances on the national stage over the past three decades.

Click here to read the rest of our story about Elizabeth Warren in Manhattan NYC.

Village Halloween Parade Photos

Another Entertaining Edition Of Street Theater

village halloween parade photos nycNovember 3, 2014 / Village Neighborhood NYC / Manhattan Parades NYC / Manhattan Buzz.

I arrived just as the parade was about to begin. There were hundreds of thousands lining the streets to watch the annual Village Halloween Parade. And in the course of the evening we would see thousands march in it.

It was a cool brisk night with temperatures in the high 40's, so not exactly cold, but not warm either. The parade began with a number of policemen on horses marching up the street followed by a few sanitation department employees who would ensure the streets would remain clean of horsey doo.

And then came the spirits of Halloween past, present and future. A lot of creativity went into this holiday parade as you will see in the photo slide show we'll post at a later date.

Story and photo by Michael Wood.

Off Broadway Theater - New Ohio Theatre West Village NYC | off broadway theatre nyc manhattan new ohio theatre west village manhattan nyc west village off broadway theater
Off Broadway Theater - New Ohio Theatre West Village NYC

Jackson Heights Revisited

Poignant, Passionate & Personal Window Into Modern American Immigrant Life

September 16, 2014 / West Village Neighborhood / Off Broadway Theater NYC / Midtown Buzz. I arrived at the New Ohio Theatre in the west village of NYC. The theater is accessible at the ground level of a modern building at 154 Christopher Street near the Hudson River. The actors and production staff were ready to begin one of their last rehearsals before the opening of I Like To Be Here: Jackson Heights Revisited, or, This Is A Mango.

The lights dimmed, the theater darkened … and the show began.

There we were … in the middle of Jackson Heights … late at night.

There was a Latino girl of the streets talking to a cleaning woman of one of the local late night shops. The Latino girl was talking about escaping her current situation with one of the men who ‘loves’ her. She was young and somewhat innocent to the deceptions of the older men who came to see her. The cleaning woman and she talked about relationships and love. The cleaning woman was the target of the affections of an Indian man who seemed to take an interest in her. But they spoke different languages.

Click here to read the rest of our review of a new off Broadway show at the Ohio Theatre in the west village which is part of the theater: village festival.

Charlie Parker Jazz Festival East Village

Thousands Attend Laid Back Jazz Festival

charlie parker jazz festAugust 25, 2014 / East Village NYC / Live Music NYC / Manhattan Buzz.

The 22nd annual Charlie Parker Jazz Festival took place this weekend. It began on Friday with a lecture at the New School in the Village, moved up to Marcus Garvey Park in Harlem on Saturday and then down to Tompkins Square in the East Village on Sunday.

I headed into the East Village Sunday early evening around closing time for the concert. There had been four jazz performances given beginning at 3 pm and running until a bit after 7 pm. The performers included pianist Kenny Barron, drummer Cindy Blackman Santana, saxaphonist Craig Handy with 2nd Line Smith and singer Brianna Thomas.

There was seating on the lawn, in the plaza in the center of the park and on the benches lining the walks. But for many it was a standing room only event. The weather was nearly perfect, with temperatures in the 70's and cloudy but dry. Thousands attended the free concerts which were sponsored by the City Parks Foundation which also organizes Summer Stage.

The weekend jazz festival commemorates the memory and contributions to jazz made by Charlie Parker. It takes place on the weekend nearest his birthday [August 29, 1920]. Parker was a jazz saxaphonist who was an innovator who experimented with chords, melodies, tempos and transitions, like an artist playing with colors and paints. He is one of the fathers of modern jazz and he died at the very young age of 35 of various health conditions.

Fringe Festival NYC

Step Into The World Of The Newly Created

fringe festival nyc 2014August 17, 2014 / East Village NYC & SoHo Neighborhood NYC / Off Broadway Theater NYC / Manhattan Buzz.

The three week long Fringe Festival continues through this coming weekend. The Fringe Festival is a curated performing arts festival that includes music, dance and theater performances at various venues throughout various sections of the Village in Manhattan.

I attended one such performance on Norfolk Street this past Sunday where the stage was fastened alongside a large box truck which was parked in a parking / play lot that was furnished with lawn chairs which were placed under a canopy to shelter the audience from the sun or inclement weather.

All of the works are original and the mix provides an adventurous dive into the performing arts. We hear that some of the works should receive accolades while others are said to need a bit of work. But all in all attending the Fringe Festival in NYC makes for a fun afternoon or evening; and the ticket prices range from $0 to $18. For more info about what's playing the rest of this week and weekend, check out

We'll post more info and a photo slide show at a later date.

Summer Streets Arrive In Manhattan

Summer In The City

summer streets manhattan nycAugust 4, 2014 / East Side Neighborhood NYC / Manhattan Neighborhoods / Biking Manhattan / Manhattan Buzz.

On Saturday from 7 am - 1 pm vast sections of Park Avenue and Lafayette were closed to traffic. It wasn't a street fair per se, as no vendors were set up, but rather an opportunity for New Yorkers to bike and stroll and photograph this seven mile stretch of Manhattan without automobiles streaming up and down the avenue.

I started at Park Avenue in the high 40's and made my way down to the mid 30's before the event ended. The Park Avenue Tunnel, which begins at 33rd Street contained a Norweigan sound installation which I unfortunately missed because they closed the several block long tunnel art / sound installation to new visitors at 12.30 pm.

But it will be back next week and the week after as Summer Streets continue. We'll post a photo slide show at a later date.

4th Of July Fireworks In Manhattan

Tale & Photos Of My Trip On Independence Day

4th of july fireworks manhattan nycJuly 7, 2014 / Holidays in Manhattan NYC / Manhattan Buzz.

I went to see the Macy's 4th of July fireworks in the East River on the Manhattan side on Friday night. Official reports told everyone that the fireworks would begin around 9 pm, but I knew from experience that they generally began closer to 9.30 pm.

I took the subway down the east side of Manhattan sometime after 8.30 pm but still a bit before 9 pm and it was as packed as it is during rush hour on a weekday morning.

I decided to go 'all in' and get off at the Court House / Brooklyn Bridge stop. Tonight it was the last stop on the train and many others had opted to get off a couple of stops earlier.

Click here later this week for the rest of the story including photos of the 4th of July fireworks in Manhattan NYC 2014 - one of which is shown to your right.

Dance Parade Moves To The Music

Dance Parade Encompasses Cast Of Thousands

dance parade photos nyc 2014May 19, 2014 / East Village NYC / Manhattan Parades NYC / Things To Do Manhattan / Manhattan Buzz.

I attended the Dance Parade in NYC. It's an event that started in response to some old laws on the books prohibiting certain kinds of behaviors that could encompass dance performances. Laws of a bygone era.

There were thousands lining the streets of the parade route which began in the Flatiron District, moving south along Broadway through the heart of the Village before turning east into the East Village and terminating at Tompkins Square Park. Performances followed at Tompkins Square Park.

In the photo at right you can see a dance group as they march along Broadway not far from Union Square Park. We have a slew of photos of this visual feast which we'll post at a later date.

5 Boro Bike Ride In Manhattan

Next Sunday 32,000 Bikers Descend On Manhattan

5 boro bike ride manhattan nycApril 28, 2014 / Manhattan Neighborhoods / Biking Manhattan / Things To Do In Manhattan / Manhattan Buzz.

Next weekend the 5 Boro Bike Ride will come streaming through all five boroughs of NYC. It's a fun bike ride with about 32,000 bikers who come from all around the nation and some from other parts of the world.


The ride goes all day long, so if you're planning on doing any travel on the roadways, you'd best plan ahead and avoid the crowds and blocked streets. We'll post more about the event, including maps, times and viewing locations later this week.

Bicycle Laws / Bike Rules in NYC - Manhattan | nyc bicycle laws manhattan cyclists rights nyc manhattan laws pertaining to cycling in nyc midtown upper east side upper west side village nyc manhattan
Bicycle Laws / Bike Rules in NYC - Manhattan

Cyclists Rights In Manhattan NYC

Knowing Your Rights & Responsibilities As An NYC Cyclist

November 7, 2013 / NYC Cylists Rights In Manhattan / Midtown Buzz. By Philip Papas. The introduction to the Cyclists' Rights Forum was given by Christina Vassallo, Executive Director, Flux Factory. She told us that the event came about after she and a friend were stopped for cycling violations, which they thought were not illegal, or had erroneously been applied as violation points to their motor vehicle driver’s license. As a result she saw the need for a forum to clarify laws, rights and proper procedures for cyclists to follow.

Click here to read our full report about NYC Bike Laws / NYC Biking Rules Forum in Queens at the Flux Factory across from Midtown Manhattan in LIC.

West & East Village NYC - Things To Do - Tompkins Square Park - TBD

TBD - are plenty of other things to do besides go to the movies and eat out at restaurants on the Upper East Side of NYC. The upper east side is near Central Park from 59th Street to 110th Street. Central Park has the Great Lawn where folks go to sunbath and people watch. There's also the Central Park Zoo located in the southeast corner of the park, as well as Wollman Skating Rink which is just across from it.

east village restaurants west village restaurants nyc

Manhattan Farmers Markets & Street Fairs in Manhattan

manhattan farmers markets manhattanMarch 6, 2014 / Manhattan Farmers Markets / Manhattan Street Fairs / Manhattan Buzz.

Many Manhattan farmers markets are open year round, but there are also a number of them that are seasonal. Some of the seasonal Manhattan farmers markets begin opening in the Spring, with the rest of them opening no later than the first couple of weeks in July.

Click here to view the schedules of many of the farmers markets in Manhattan. Manhattan street fairs are entirely seasonal, with some of them hitting the streets as early as March. Manhattan street fairs rise markedly during the spring and lighten up during the dog days of summer [July / August], returning in the fall. Click here to view a full schedule of Manhattan street fairs.

Food & Wine - Made In New York

Crain's & Taste NY Food & Beverage Trade Show

nyc made food & wine manhattanOctober 27, 2014 / Specialty Food & Wine Manhattan / NYC & Manhattan Neighborhoods / Manhattan Buzz.

I had an opportunity to visit the Made In New York Food & Beverage Trade Show at the Fashion Institute of Technology in Chelsea last Thursday.

When I arrived, a bit late in the day, the 50 - 100 exhibitors were in full motion as I made my way along the corridors taking photos and sampling local delectables. There were pastries, candies, pasta, sauces, cheeses, wines, spirits and non-alcoholic beverages filling the aisles and all - in tandem with the theme were - Made In New York.

Before I became fully engrossed in the exhibits and exhibitors I made my way down to the KM Amphitheater where I listened to a panel discussions about 'How To Get NYS Products Into NYC Restaurants, Hotels and Bars' which was followed by a presentation about 'Wine, Beer & Spirits'.


The panel discussion featured a represenative of the Standard, Highline, specialty foods wine manhattan nycJimmy of Jimmy's No. 43, a representative of GrowNYC, a representative from BRGuest Hospitality a restaurant group, and the NYC Hospitality Alliance. They talked about passion for the product and collaborative relationships, but generally they seemed to think that the environment is favorably disposed to the inclusion of locally produced foods, wines and other beverages.

The Wine, Beer & Spirits presentation was given by Jim Trezise, President of the New York Wine & Grape Foundation. He gave a presentation full of facts and figures about the evolution of the vineyards and wine industry in New York State. We'll post more about both of these presentations at a later date.

I'll also delve a bit more into the content of the exhibits and samples at a later date, and will post a full slide show showing the exhibits and exhibitors.

Halloween Parties - Midtown UES EVillage NYC

Manhattan Halloween Parties NYC

manhattan halloween parties nycOctober 26, 2014 / Manhattan Restaurants / Manhattan Buzz.

With a little more than two weeks to go before Halloween, we decided to do a round up of some of the Halloween parties planned in Manhattan.

We started by looking up the weather forecast. Generally the temperatures are expected to be about 60 during the day, dropping to the 40's at night. It's still a bit too early to know whether there's any precipitation in the forecast.

The Halloween Parade in the Village starts at 7 pm at Spring Street and 6th Avenue and marches north to 16th Street. We've heard that there are over 30 musical groups and an innumerable showing of creative costumes.

We began contacting local Manhattan bars and restaurants to see what parties they have planned. In most cases we suggest that you rsvp a spot to be sure you get in.

Click here to view our report on Halloween Parties Manhattan Midtown UES & EVillage SoHo.

Chelsea Farmers Markets & Upper West Side Farmers Markets

Chelsea Farmers Markets & Upper West Side NYC Farmers Markets

Midtown Buzz / Farmers Markets Manhattan NYC.  This page contains links to a map and detailed information about the Chelsea NYC famers market & the Morningside Park farmers market on the West Side of Manhattan in NYC.  

Click here to view our map of the Chelsea farmers markets & Upper West Side farmers market at Morningside Heights / Park.

West & East Village NYC Restaurants & Diners - TBD

TBD - The West & East Village NYC is home to a number of fine restaurants, ranging in scope from the high end restaurants to the more casual and comfortable diners open 24 hours per day in NYC. Click here to view our emerging section on Upper East Side restaurants.

Up along Madison Avenue in the 70's there are a number of fashionable eateries, including Viand Cafe at 78th Street and EAT Cafe which is managed by Eliza Zabar.

Down on Third Avenue at the corner of 55th Street you'll find P. J. Clarke's which has been around about a century. It's still a popular after work bar and in the back they have a dining area.

east village shops shopping west village nyc

West & East Village NYC - Shops & Shopping - TBD

Food & shopping on the West & East Village of NYC.

east village condos apts nyc west village condos apts nyc

Real Estate Market Conditions In Manhattan

Expo Highlights Opportunities, Risks & Other Considerations

nyc finance expo 2014May 28, 2014 / Manhattan Real Estate NYC / Midtown Manhattan NYC / Manhattan Buzz.

I attended the 2014 NYC Finance Expo at the Roosevelt Hotel on May 14th. The expo was well attended by Manhattan real estate professionals and Manhattan real estate lenders and banks.

The organizers had at least three seminars going simultaneously throughout the day. Most sessions ran between 20 minutes and an hour.

The topics of the seminars cut through a cross section of interests of those in the industry, from social marketing to real estate finance to real estate planning. We sat through a couple of sessions and I will post some of what we learned about where we are in the current economic cycle vis a vis Manhattan and NYC real esate prices.

A slide show of some of the sessions, a number of the exhibits and many of the attendees is also included.

The East Village Neighborhood & The West Village Neighborhood

A Look At The History Of The West & East Village Neighborhoods

Manhattan Neighborhoods / Manhattan History / Manhattan Buzz.

The following provides both a history and links into some of the current day things to do in the East Village neighborhood and the West Village Neighborhood including schools, restaurants and shops. More will be added as time goes on.

Greenwich Village History – Dutch Farmlands – 1600’s

The area now covered by the western section of Greenwich Village was once farmland owned by the Dutch settlers. In 1664 the English won the colony from the Dutch in the war. At the time the area was somewhat separate from lower Manhattan.

Greenwich Village Neighborhood History – 1700’s

Around the turn of the 18th century [1700’s] the area had been parceled and began to take on the name of Greenwich Village. The oldest surviving structure in the Village dates back to 1799. It is the Isaacs-Hendricks House at 77 Bedford in what is now the West Village neighborhood. Forgotten NY informs us that it was owned by a copper merchant who supplied Robert Fulton with the material for the boilers on the Clermont steamboat in 1807.

The streets of the West Village evolved out of natural pathways and were given names prior to the implementation of the city planning grid and street numbering of 1811, which now dominates the New York City grid. Hence it’s easy to get lost in the West Village as the names and streets remain largely as they were set out centuries ago.

Greenwich Village Neighborhood History – Washington Square Park – 1800’s

According to Wikipedia, some of the area today known as Washington Square Park was purchased by the city in around the turn of the 19th century [1800] to serve as a public burial ground or potters field. In 1826 the city purchased the additional land and laid out the Washington Military Parade Ground.

The row of houses lining the northern perimeter of the Washington Square Park, were erected a few years later around 1830 and many are still standing today. In 1889 a large wood and plaster arch was erected in commemoration of the centennial of George Washington’s inauguration. It was so popular that in 1892 they erected the marble arch that stands there today. The arch was modeled after the Arc de Triomphe erected in Paris during Napoleon’s time [1806].

Click here for a Washington Square Park map in the Village Neighborhood of NYC [TBD].

The History Of Greenwich Village - Union Square - 1815

In 1815 the city declared a section of the former potters fields, of what was then the northern end of the city, Union Place.

According to Wikipedia, Union Place was where the union of Broadway and Bowery Street met and hence the name ‘union’ - even though subsequently it became known for large labor union rallies and also rallies for Union soldiers. In 1832 the boundaries were enlarged and the name changed to Union Square at the urging of Samuel Ruggles, one of the organizers behind Gramercy Park.

In 1882 it became the site of the first Labor Day gathering and in 1992 was made an historic site because of that event. Bronze statues of both George Washington [shown returning to New York atop a horse after the British conceded the war] and one of Abraham Lincoln standing are featured in the park [see Cooper Union].

One of New York City’s first greenmarkets was opened in Union Square in 1976. Click here for a map of Union Square Park just north of the Village in NYC.

The History of Greenwich Village - New York University - 1831

In 1831 New York established the University of the City of New York, which would later become known at NYU. It was founded as a non-denominational school [non-religious] through the efforts of former Treasury Secretary Albert Gallatin [under Jefferson & Madison]. The first classes began downtown before the university settled in and around Washington Square in Greenwich Village. Most of its present day campus is located around Washington Square Park and to the east between Broadway. As with many American schools started in the 19th century, the school was founded with the intention that admission be based on merit, not social / economic class.

The History of the East Village Neighborhood - Tompkins Square Park – 1829 - 1850

The area that now encompasses Tompkins Square Park and the surrounding East Village neighborhood was once referred to as Stuyvesant meadows, as it was once owned by the first Dutch Mayor, Peter Stuyvesant. One of the Stuyvesant heirs gifted the land to the city in 1829 with the understanding that it remain public space. A forerunner to the park, a square, was opened in 1834 and named after Daniel Tompkins who was a Governor of New York and a vice president under James Monroe. The park was opened in 1850.

Throughout its history the park has been a gathering place for the oppressed, starting in 1857 with immigrant protests, in 1863 the Draft Riot protests, in 1874 the Tompkins Square Riots where workers and police clashed, and so on. In the late 20th century there were anti-Vietnam War protests and in 1988 the last protest by homeless people who were removed from the park with a curfew.

Today Tompkins Square is home to the Charlie Parker Jazz Festival and other such events. Click here to read a story about the Charlie Parker Jazz Festival Tompkins Square Park East Village [includes photos & music video].

The History of the East Village Neighborhood - Cooper Union - 1859

Peter Cooper, inventor of the first railroad steam engine, founded Cooper Union in 1859. The school was modeled in part after the French Polytechnic School and the goal was to provide people of merit with free access to an excellent scientific school. NY Post Publisher William Cullen Bryant and NY Tribune Publisher Horace Greeley were board members. In 1860, Abraham Lincoln gave an important address in the Great Hall at Cooper Union which many credit as helping him win the nomination and subsequent election.

History of the West Village Neighborhood - The Whitney Museum of American Art – 1930

The Whitney Museum was founded sometime around 1930 by Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney. Whitney had an extensive collection of works by American artists and she decided to start her own museum of American art in the West Village on 8th Street. In the 1950's the museum began moving north, with a stop in Midtown near MoMA and eventually settling on the Upper East Side neighborhood at Madison and 75th Street in 1966. In 2014 the Whitney vacated the space and moved back down to the West Village.

West Village Neighborhood History - The Stonewall Riots - 1969

The Stonewall Riots which began at the Stonewall Inn at 51-53 Christopher Street between Waverly and 4th Street in the West Village is considered the flashpoint for the organization of the Gay Lesbian Liberation Movement. The nightclub was apparently Mafia-financed and in violation of many city regulations and operated as a gay club - which in itself was, at the time – illegal. When the police attempted to close the club at 1 am, a riot broke out between them and the gay crowd. The event became a catalyst for gays to organize politically to obtain equal rights / recognition under the law.

The History of the East Village Neighborhood - The Tenement Museum – 1988

The Tenement Museum was founded in 1988 and is actually not in the East Village but rather the Bowery. The Tenement Museum has preserved some of the history of tenement dwellers, keeping their stories alive through in situ tours, complete with recordings by the children and grandchildren of German / Russian Jewish, Italian and Irish immigrants. It is the story of the melting pot and of the lives of real 19th and 20th century immigrants, living in the East Village and Bowery neighborhoods of New York City.

Art, Music & Pop Culture Scene

The west village is a mixed, straight, gay-influenced scene - likely evolving, in part, out of the Stonewall Riots. There are several legacy jazz clubs, most notably the Blue Note, which continue to entertain jazz enthusiasts to this day. Charlie Parker and others used to frequent / live in the East Village which was a big hippie scene in the 1960’s and 1970’s. There are also a number of modern music clubs.

Most of the art scene has migrated north into Chelsea, Midtown West and Hells Kitchen. As the area has become gentrified over the past couple decades, most of the young artists and musicians have migrated to the outer boroughs, initially Brooklyn, then Queens and increasingly into the Bronx.

West & East Village Restaurants

The West & East Village neighborhoods are home to a wide variety of restaurants befitting a wide range of budgets. The East Village culinary / cuisine heritage has been predominantly Jewish, Italian and Ukranian. There are still a few legacy restaurants left, including Katz Delicatessen, Veselka Ukranian Diner and Lanza Italian Restaurants. Click here to visit our West & East Village Restaurants section, which will continue to evolve.

West & East Village Shops

The West & East Village neighborhoods are home to a wide variety of shops and shopping venues providing an opportunity to purchase a wide variety of unique clothing and things. Click here to visit our Shopping the West & East Village section which will also continue to evolve.

West & East Village NYC Real Estate - Buying & Renting Apts In The West & East Village NYC - TBD

Real estate in the West & East Village is very desirable. Not just because of the restaurants, movie theaters, shopping, Central Park and the many cultural attractions located conveniently in the neighborhood [keep scrolling down]. All of which in and of themselves would make it a great place to live.

Transportation / Access. It's conveniently located not just to Central Park, Midtown and the Upper West Side - but also to the FDR highway which takes East Siders north, south and east into Queens.

It's also a quick taxi ride to LaGuardia Airport. And the 4, 5 & 6 subway lines provide easy public transit to destinations near and far within NYC.

West & East Village NYC Neighbohood - Movie Theaters - TBD

Just east of Bloomingdale's on Third Avenue there's a movie theater, Cinema 1, 2 & 3. Just north of there, there's another restaurant with open walls, so it's a good place to hang out before or after the cinema assuming there's not full.

East Village West Village NYC - Related Links

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