Sunday, August 30, 2009

City Island, New York

mSo here's the Resident Guide to NYC post about City Island- what some call the Cape Cod of New York City.

City Island is an island in Long Island Sound about 1.25 miles long in the northeast Bronx (NYC) or some like to think the southeast corner of Westchester County. Future posts will talk about the Island's history, but for now NYC visitors might want to know that City Island is a 50+ minute commute from mid-town NYC take the #6 train and then the #29 bus.

My suggestion take the bus to the very last stop, looking out the window- then walk back toward the bridge (City Island Bridge is the connection to the mainland). By riding to the end of the Island first you get a glimpse of what you want to see more of, and the wide variety of eateries - the major draw for visitors to the Island.

When you walk back to the bridge, take a moment sit in Catherine Scott Park and send some good thoughts to Catherine a City Island resident who made major contributions to presevering the history of the Island before her premature passing.

At the bridge area there's at least four seafood restaurants including JP's, Lobster House on the back street not right on the main drag City Island Avenue. My favorite 'big food' restaurant is a few blocks further, Artie's - no not waterfront but consistently good food; yet my overall preference is the several smaller neighborhood restaurants between Fordham and Carroll Streets-- then down 'the end' are the traditional Lobster Box, and the ever people original Sammy's. Johnny's Reef restaurant. The telephone wires around Johnny's home to wild parrots.

Then there's the City Island Nautical Museum on Fordham Street and for historical architecute buffs a significant number of historical homes including 586 City Island Avenue which was home to a sea captain. And recently Island residents reconstructed an historical ship that sits as a monument in front of the public school PS 172 on the Avenue. And of course, Starving Artist Gallery where there's a great music lineup. Music is also on tap across the street from the Tree House Cafe, schedules for both are posted in their windows.

The New York Public Library branch on the Island is home to the largest ship collection in the library system and across the street is Ron Terner's gallery and the lucky lotto store.

Writing this post I'm thinkng City Island and other similar neighborhoods are worthy of their own blogs.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Summer in the City II

Summer in the City II is a continuation of last post. New York City events for August 2009 (plan ahead) include:

FREE Lincoln Center out of Doors events and of course continuatin of films at Bryant Park
with August films including Kramer vs. Kramer, The Magnificent Seven and Close Encounters.

For a New York Resident mini-vacation in July head out to the Tree House on City Island, enjoy a truly amazing dinner, then walk across the avenue to enjoy Saturday Night Jazz. There is a $10 cover at the time of this posting, but if the future July gigs are as good as yesterday's- worth every penny.

City Island is billed as the Cape Cod of the city and accessible by #6 train and #29 bus. Or if you land on another train route #5, #2, #4 or the D then it is the #12 to the #29 connect at Pelham Bay Station- use the MTA map planner on the blog.

Hmm maybe I need a full post on City Island.

Monday, June 29, 2009

Summer in the City

Well last we spoke it was fall and now whoosh it is Summer in the City again. Activities abound and perhaps to jump start I should send you to the River to River Festival

In the spirit of the economic challenges most of us face let's check out free stuff in the city, like the Monday night film festival and after work concert series in Bryant Park.

Bryant Park is located behind the New York Public Library Main Branch at 42nd Street. The library itself is a wonderful Summer in the City excursion and the NYPL website has information about a variety of summertime activities.

Thanks NYC taxpayers and all those who fund these events.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Fall in NYC

Fall brings NYC residents outdoors. Here's a few insider places to visit.

Check out website for Brooklyn Botanic Gardens, - a walk, a class, something special...
as well
The Bronx Botanical Gardens, I have taken photography classes there in the past and enjoyed a wonderful guided tour. Yep New Yorkers don't often believe they need a 'guide' but I've learned how enriching it can be.
The Queens Botanical Garden is 'kid friendly' and is accessible by public transporation, yep, even from the Bronx.

The outdoors list includes Wave Hill in the Bronx and, of course, The Cloisters a branch of the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

All of the above are great places to sit and knit, crochet or gain inspiration for the fiber arts and other media.

I'm sure there are many other outdoor venues you will add in comments- for Fall 2008.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Jazz in New York City

New York City is a Jazz lovers dream come true this summer. Most days you can find a free or affordable performance in any of the 5 boros. There's jazz for the purist and performances with blues and rock. Even BAM- (Brooklyn Academy of Music) is hosting lunchtime concerts at Metrotech.

There's jazz in Harlem Meer and the Charlie Parker Festival as well as jazz at Scandanavia House.

If you are interested in Smooth Cruises it's a good idea to order tickets early. I've been watching each cruise sell out.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Things Hispanic

There are numerous Hispanic cultural centers, activities, events and cultural events throughout New York City. Most museums host one or more exhibitions and events throughout the year, so residents and visitors alike are best served performing a google search. However, what residents know is a jumping off point is The Hispanic Society and some of the best restaurants, especially Mexican and Dominican are found in the outer boroughs.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Things Indian

Little India also known as Curry Hill is an area in New York City centered around the intersection of 28th Street and Lexington Avenue in Manhattan. Although this Indian community is not especially large (as compared to the Queens/Jackson Heights area, where the Indian population is now almost 110,000), the small vital area has good restaurants and interesting shops. There’s a saree store (traditional Indian dress) grocery stores and restaurants. It is not unusual to find workers who do not speak English, yet the majority of shop owners do conduct their business in English.

One of the draws to this area of New York City is the smells, cumin and fennel permeate the air from the spice shops and the restaurants. Vegetarian choices are on just about every Indian restaurant menu, and both Madras Mahal (27th & Lexington) or Saravannas (26th & Lexington) get rave reviews. Pongal’s website lets you reserve a table online and Madras Mahal advertize that they are strictly kosher.

An interesting website to get a sense of the area is Neil’s Curry Hill favorites at

Friday, April 25, 2008

Things German

New York City has a lot to offer for those looking for things German. Restaurants can be found in the Yorkville area like the Heidelberg on Second Avenue Hallo Berlin over on 1oth Avenue and Lederhosen German Wurst and Bierhaus on Grove Street. In the outlying boroughs try Zum Stammtisch in Queens.

There are a number of events and activities that take place monthly throughout the city. For example, the Tribeca Film Festival includes Seven Days Sunday (Sieben Tage Sonntag) during April.

The best resource for keeping up with things German in New York City is Germany In New York City