Posts Tagged ‘Bronx’

Slow Down and Smell the Orchids at the New York Botanical Gardens This Week…. Then Enjoy an Evening of Food, Drink, Dance and Music

The Bronx’s New York Botanical Garden is in full bloom with its daffodils, azaleas and tulips. But it’s the Garden’s exotic orchid show in the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory and its after-dark program, “Orchid Evenings” that add a special something to programming this spring. This year’s orchid show with its thousands of delicate orchids is a tribute to Singapore, the “City in a Garden” where orchids are a vital part of the culture and landscape.

Orchids from Singapore as well as from the Bronx collection are on display in full dazzling colors and shapes.

Orchid Evenings

There’s still one more week to enjoy the beauty of these Singaporean orchids and indulge in a fun evening reminiscent of Asian night markets. Dancers, live DJs and outdoor food and drink vendors are as enticing as the flowers.

The show was developed in partnership with Singapore Botanic Gardens and Gardens by the Bay. Some of the Singapore Botanic Gardens’ signature Arches make their appearance here in specially designed versions, adorned with thousands of orchids and other tropical flowers. Gardens by the Sea has contributed their Supertrees, amazing vertical shapes dripping with orchids of all colors created especially for the New York Botanical Garden. The trees have another function as well; they are embedded with photovoltaic cells that harvest solar energy, not as important within the confines of the Conservatory in the Bronx but important in Singapore.

Plan your timing so that you can explore the gardens outdoors by day, enjoy the orchids in their indoor setting as dusk falls, and then indulge in the outdoor fun that will have you smiling until late. You can also reserve an early-evening table at the Hudson Garden Grill (last reservation is at 5:30pm).

1st time in NYBG’s history, they're naming a new orchid hybrid after a public figure and beloved native New Yorker, Vanda Awkwafina

Tickets can be purchased online for either day entry to see the orchids or for the full evening experience.

Evening tickets are available for the weekend fun, with entry times at 7pm, 7:30pm or 8pm, on April 26 and 27. No one under 21 is allowed.

2900 Southern Boulevard, Bronx, New York, 718-817-8700   https://www.nybg.org/event/the-orchid-show/

Hangover Helpers on New Year’s Day

Did you overdo it on New Year’s Eve in NYC?  Did you know that January 1 is officially National Bloody Mary Day?

I have a few suggestions on how to ease your aching head.

Walk over the Williamsburg Bridge to get some fresh air and properly celebrate National Bloody Mary Day at Taqueria Diana. The laid-back, Californian style restaurant and mezcal bar serves a delicious Bloody Diana (Vida mezcal, tomato, Worcestershire sauce, escabeche, lime, horseradish), a slight twist on the classic Bloody. You’ll quickly be on your way to feeling revived again as Bloody Mary’s are the ultimate hangover cure  (and my go-to for any bad weather, or bad mood day), providing much-needed electrolytes, Vitamin C and Vitamin B. And, best of all, no one will judge if you spring for an order of sheet pan nachos or super-fries topped with cheese, guac, and sour cream. They go perfectly with a Bloody Mary. You’ll see. Taqueria Diana also has locations in Manhattan in the East Village, Lower East Side and Hell’s Kitchen if you can’t get it together to walk to Brooklyn.

Drag your aching self to Toby’s Estate for a fresh, roasted coffee for a caffeine fix, courtesy of Toby’s new seasonal offerings. Now that it’s really winter – and not just 50-degree sorta winter – try the Spicy Drinking Chocolate, a classic hot chocolate with a kick from chocolate sauce infused with their homemade honey-chili syrup. Aside from that one being my new favorite, winter is still all about gingerbread for me, so I will happily pour caffeine into my body by way of Toby’s gingerbread latte, a mix of espresso milk and gingerbread syrup with a hint of allspice cinnamon, clove and fresh ginger. And you have a choice of where to find them: Long Island City, Manhattan, and Brooklyn. Sorry, Queens, Bronx and Staten Island – you’ll have to settle for ordinary Dunkin.

Who doesn’t love a bacon and egg sandwich? It’s the perfect cure for a hangover with its fat, grease, protein and carbs combination.  With locations in both Nolita and Williamsburg, Egg Shop will still be offering its menu of 10 egg-based sandwiches, cruisers, French toast, and more on New Year’s Day, but the deal you want to scarf up is their all-day, half-off Bloody Mary’s and Mimosas fix (you know, a bit of the hair of the dog as they say) along with a $12 Pepper Boy Sandwich and Bloody Mary combo all day long. It’s another great way to celebrate Bloody Mary Day and restore your sanity.

Ed’s Lobster Bar jumps on the Bloody Mary Day bandwagon, offering you a free Bloody Mary when you order either their lobster mac and cheese, or Ed’s near-to-perfection lobster roll.  You can sleep in, too. The deal is valid all day long.

If you were drinking beer all night instead of Champagne, maybe a couple of brews will bring you back to life. Clinton Hall beer hall is celebrating the New Year by offering their award-winning Double Smashed Burger paired with a Gigawatt beer for only $20.19 at all locations (Bronx, Financial District and Williamsburg) all day long. Cheers!

Dale Chihuly Exhibit at New York Botanical Garden: Now through October 29

Glass artist Dale Chihuly has taken over the New York Botanical Garden once again. With his new exhibit designed to complement the Botanical Garden’s landscape and architecture, Chihuly again shows his masterful use of color and material with glass sculptures intermingled among plants, near trees, and adjacent to buildings.

On exhibit outdoors through October 29, the myriad glass sculptures transform into neon spectacles at night. This is Dale Chihuly’s first outdoor exhibit in New York in a decade and one which you shouldn’t miss.  Twenty pieces including a greenish yellow tree, tangles of colored neon, and red logs are scattered among the 250 acres of the gardens, looking perfectly in place against the foliage and flowers. Overhead, hanging chandeliers, a Chihuly signature, fascinate with their twists and curls.

Also displayed (indoors) are sketches from earlier in Chihuly’s career as well as some of his earlier art glass pieces.

For an artist as familiar as Dale Chihuly has become (his pieces are in hotels worldwide, in office buildings, and a permanent part of the NYBG collection), it’s a revelation to see these works sited outdoors, glass that’s impervious to the elements and makes a statement of color and design along the paths of green that fill the gardens.

Before the end of the month, the leaves will begin to turn, undoubtedly creating another feeling and expression of the art.  See the pieces now when everything is pure green, but definitely return by month’s end both to witness the change in environment and to bid a fond farewell to a beautiful exhibit.

Dining Tip: Enjoy a diverse and creative menu of paninis, pizzas, salads and desserts among the trees at the Pine Tree Café at the NYBG.  https://www.nybg.org/visit/dining/pine-tree-cafe/

New York Botanical Garden, https://www.nybg.org , 2900 Southern Boulevard, Bronx, NY, 718-817-8700. Tickets start at $23 for adults and vary by day.  Closed on Monday except for Columbus Day.

Free Things to Do This Summer

If you think everything in New York costs too much, well, you’re right—almost. In fact, the city has tons of free attractions and activities; here are some summer faves.

Brooklyn BridgeWalk across the Brooklyn Bridge (or part of it) for a spectacular view of the Financial District and One World Trade Center, Brooklyn, the seaport, and Manhattan. If you’re still energized, you can visit Brooklyn Bridge Park, a beautiful setting blessed with unobstructed city views.

Grab a distinctively different park experience by hiking the High Line. Where else but in New York could you smell the flowers, admire art and score some superb people watching along a former railroad track? If you happen to be there on Friday between 7 and 9:30pm, stop by the new Whitney Museum. Admission is free (you can pay what you wish).

Ride the Staten Island ferry (and back) to see the Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, and the southern tip of Manhattan from the water.

Catch a free outdoor movie screening in Soundview Park (Bronx), Bryant Park (Manhattan), on Pier 1 in Riverside Park (Manhattan), Brooklyn Bridge Park, Sunset Park (Brooklyn), Willowbrook Park (Staten Island), Simeone Park (Queens) or at the Socrates Sculpture Garden (Queens). Schedules are posted weekly.

FishingGo catch-and-release fishing at Harlem Meer with free poles and bait to borrow from the Dana Discovery Center.

Wander Battery Park City’s waterfront promenade. The breeze, occasional concerts, fun parks and playgrounds, and passing boats will make you forget you’re in the gritty city, although the view of the Statue of Liberty will remind you that you couldn’t be anywhere but New York.

TrapeseWatch wannabe trapeze artists swing and soar at the New York Trapeze School along the Hudson River at Pier 40 in Manhattan, or at 3029 Stillwell Ave. in Coney Island

Island Hop to Governors Island by ferry. In this historic and expansive park setting you can bike, take a tram ride, and absorb the great views of the city.

Taste the treats at the Union Square greenmarket (Mon., Wed., Fri., Sat.), where farmers offer samples of organically grown produce, hand-pressed juices, artisanal cheeses, and fresh bread.

Stroll the Coney Island boardwalk and play on the beach for some old-school kitsch. Although the outrageous Mermaid Parade and the gluttonous Fourth of July hot-dog-eating contest have passed, there’s plenty to see to keep you entertained.

Check out the street performers around New York’s parks: break-dancers in Union Square and by Central Park’s Bethesda Fountain, nutty unicyclists in Washington Square, and Statue of Liberty clones in Battery Park and Times Square along the pedestrian-only Broadway promenade. The entertainers situated near the subway (or in the subway – enter for only $2.75) are better than you’d expect—to perform, they must first be vetted by committee.

Conservatory GardensStroll among the paths in the Central Park Conservatory Garden for gorgeous, gorgeous flowers, and idyllic formal gardens.

Attend a storytelling hour or author talk at Barnes & Noble. You can check schedules and store locations online.

Visit a museum. Many, many of New York City’s best collections offer hours, days, or nights when admission is free for all. You can view the complete schedule here.

Eat the Bronx!

Savor the BronxI’ve already told you why you should visit the Bronx now, but here’s another good reason: “Savor the Bronx.” The Bronx’s version of restaurant week lasts through November 14. “Savor the City” Restaurant Week has 25 participants offering fabulous deals for lunch and dinner, and in some cases for both meals. You’ll need to contact each restaurant when you make your reservation to find out which meal applies and whether there are any restrictions.

Where indicated, L means lunch deal is offered for $16.41, and D means dinner is offered for $20.14.

http://www.ilovethebronx.com/index.php/events/savor-the-bronx.

Now’s the time to explore the Bronx — visit the Zoo, the Botanical Gardens, shop the markets on Arthur Avenue, stroll along City Island, and eat, eat, eat.  You can even pretend you know Dion and the Belmonts.

ITALIAN

Antonio’s Trattoria
2370 Belmont Avenue

http://www.antoniostrattoria.com

718-733-6630

Arties Steaks and Seafood
394 City Island Avenue
artiesofcityisland.com
718-885-9885
L/D

Giovanni Restaurant
579 Grand Concourse
giovanninyc.com
718-402-6996

Giovanni’s Restaurant
2343 Arthur Avenue
giovannisrestaurant.net
718-933-4141
L/D

Ice House Café
and Restaurant
140 Reynolds Avenue
icehousecafebronx.com
718-863-5580
L/D

John’s Pizzeria
2326 Arthur Avenue
718-220-0000

Lucca Restaurant
3019 Westchester Avenue
lucca-restaurant.com
718-892-8282

Spoto’s
4005 East Tremont Avenue
spotosnyc.com
718-828-5613
D

Tosca Café
4034 East Tremont Avenue
toscanyc.com
718-239-3300
D

LATIN AMERICAN

Babalu
3233 East Tremont Avenue
babalubx.com
718-824-8400
L/D

Don Coqui
565 City Island Avenue
doncoqui.tv
718-885-2222
D

Havana Café
3151 East Tremont Avenue
bronxhavanacafe.com
718-518-1800
L

Siete Ocho Siete
3363 East Tremont Avenue
sieteochosiete.com
718-430-6600

AMERICAN

Charlies Bar & Kitchen
112 Lincoln Avenue
charliesbarkitchen.com
718-684-2338

Hard Rock Café – Yankee Stadium
1 East 161st St, Gate 6
hardrock.com/yankeestadium
646-977-8888

Jake’s Steakhouse
6031 Broadway
jakessteakhouse.com
718-581-0182

P & K’s Grille
170 West 231st Street
pkgrille.com
347-602-7880

The Bronx Beer Hall
2344 Arthur Avenue
thebronxbeerhall.com
347-396-0555

FRENCH

Bistro SK
273 City Island Avenue
bistrosk.com
718-885-1670
D

MEXICAN

Cabo
3764 East Tremont Avenue
cabobx.com
718-863-0091
L

RJC Family Café
2338 Jerome Avenue
718-220-4888
L/D

Santa Fe Grill & Bar
6025 Broadway
santafegrillrestaurant.com
718-796-5095

Xochimilco Family
Restaurant
653 Melrose Avenue
xochi-restaurant.com
718-402-5400

ASIAN

Ceetay
129 Alexander Avenue
ceetay.com
718-618-7020
D

HEALTHY ALTERNATIVE

Muscle Maker Grill
4041 East Tremont Avenue
musclemakergrill.com
718-822-6992

Free Site-Specific Dance Takes Over the Bronx: August 13, 14, and 16

NiJa arm raised WH

Ni’Ja Whitson Adebanjo at Wave Hill

Here’s a wonderful way to enjoy dance in the city along with an evening in the some of the city’s coolest parks. Free! DANCING THROUGH THE BRONX is a site-specific dance festival about contemporary dance in three green spaces of varying size and topography. The programs, some choreographed by Bronx artists, follow a format of three consecutive 12-minute dances and conclude with a cipher (a free-style dance circle with audience participation). The program is supported by the National Endowment of the Arts. http://www.dancinginthestreets.org/#!dancing-through-the-bronx-8132014/c16aj

Performed on all three evenings, with nuances varying by location, are works by James “Cricket” Colter, featuring five hip hop dancers who will adapt a broad vocabulary of hip hop styles to each park’s terrain; and by Larry Keigwin, featuring 30 performers—six KEIGWIN + COMPANY members and 24 community members of all ages and abilities.

In addition, three artists will showcase their work on one evening each. Ni’Ja Whitson Adebanjo will create and perform a duet for herself with a sound artist, integrating ritual performance with the contours and textures of one of Wave Hill’s exquisite gardens. At Hayden Lord Park, Toni Renee Johnson explores the relationship between passivity and aggression in a work that guides the audience to follow a trio of dancers through different sections of the intimate park. Arthur Aviles resurrects his popular Ritual Dance with 15 dancers who will spread out through Owen Dolen Park, performing simultaneous solos to the same beat, which they will create by clapping their hands and an occasional shout.

The program is part of the 30-year legacy of Dancing in the Streets to bring free dance and culture to unusual locales throughout the city. www.dancinginthestreets.org 917-714-2221

The three-night schedule – August 13, August 14, August 16:

WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 13, 6:30pm -

Choreographers:                Ni’Ja Whitson Adebanjo, James “Cricket” Colter, and Larry Keigwin

Location:                            Wave Hill, 675 West 252nd Street, Bronx (Riverdale)

Cricket breaking Wave Hill

James “Cricket” Colter at Wave Hill

Wave Hill, one of 33 New York City-owned cultural institutions, is a 28-acre public garden and cultural center in the Bronx overlooking the Hudson River. Historic Wave Hill House was built as a country home in 1843 by William Lewis Morris and has since been home to Theodore Roosevelt, Mark Twain, and Arturo Toscanini, among others. Its spectacular grounds include lush lawns; aquatic, herb and wild gardens; vine-covered pergolas; woodland trails and a broad variety of perennial and annual flowers. http://www.wavehill.org/

Directions:                         Subway: 1 train to West 242nd Street; Train: Metro North to Riverdale. For information regarding shuttle service visit: http://www.wavehill.org/events/categories/sunset-wednesdays/

Admission: The performance is free to all attendees. But if you’d like to visit Wave Hill starting at 4pm to enjoy the green space, a pre-performance picnic, or just chill, there is a small entrance fee of $10 for adults, $6 for students and seniors, and $4 for children 6-18 is required.

THURSDAY, AUGUST 14, 4:30pm

Choreographers:                James “Cricket” Colter, Toni Renee Johnson, and Larry Keigwin

Location: Hayden Lord Park, 1667 Andrews Avenue, Bronx (University Heights)

Toni_Renee_Johnson_HLP_400

Toni Renee Johnson at Hayden Lord Park

Hayden Lord Park is a small park that was inspired by Gaudi’s artwork in Barcelona’s Park Güell. Opened in September 2013, and located between two Bronx Pro buildings, the park has transformed a formerly under-utilized urban space into a colorful oasis for community gatherings, art making, and quiet contemplation. http://dreamyard.com/city-officials-residents-join-bronx-pro-group-and-dreamyard-to-celebrate-the-opening-of-hayden-lord-park-in-the-bronx/

Directions:                         Subway: 4 train to 176th St, or D train to 174th-175th St.; Bus: Bx3 & Bx36 to University Ave/174 Street; Bx13 & Bx35 to Edward L Grant Hy/University Ave.

SATURDAY, AUGUST 16, 2pm

Choreographers:                Arthur Aviles, James “Cricket” Colter, and Larry Keigwin

Location: Owen Dolen Park, 2551 Westchester Avenue, Bronx (Westchester Square)

Owen Dolen Park is the hub of Westchester Square. It is located on the site of the historic Village Green, which was the center of the thriving 17th-century Westchester Village. Rehabilitation of the park began in September 2011. http://www.nycgovparks.org/parks/owendolenpark/

Directions:

Subway: 6 train to Westchester Sq-East Tremont Avenue; Bus: Bx4 to Westchester Av/St Peters Ave; Bx21 to Westchester Ave/ Benson Avenue; Bx24 to Westchester Av – E Tremont Av.

THE CHOREOGRAPHERS:

  • James “Cricket” Colter is a world-known, respected professional street dancer. He is a founding member of Rennie Harris Pure Movement, and he performs, choreographs, and teaches at dance festivals worldwide. Cricket danced in the film Step Up 2 the Streets and in music videos with Will Smith, Boys II Men, and KRS-1 among others. He recently formed his own company Crazy-Natives with the goal of pushing the limits of hip hop dance and integrating it with other contemporary dance forms.
  • Larry Keigwin is a native New Yorker and choreographer who has danced his way from the Metropolitan Opera to downtown clubs to Broadway and back. He founded KEIGWIN + COMPANY in 2003; and has since created dozens of works for K+C, as well as for the Royal New Zealand Ballet, The Martha Graham Dance Company, Vail International Dance Festival, Dancing in the Streets, and the Broadway musical If/Then.
  • Arthur Aviles at Owen Dolen Park

  • Toni Renee Johnson is a performer, choreographer, educator and director. She is the Artistic Director of the Bronx-based Maverick Dance Experience and is currently the Program Director at Marquis Studios. Johnson creates bold work rooted in social commentary, blood memory and interpersonal relationships.
  • Ni’Ja Whitson Adebanjo is an interdisciplinary artist, writer, and full-time lecturer at Lehman College who has performed and conducted research, residencies, and master classes in Africa, Brazil, Canada and the USA, including at the Apollo, Roulette, and at the Art Institute of Chicago. Whitson Adebanjo is a Movement Research Artist in Residence and a performer in the national tour of River See written and conducted by Sharon Bridgforth.

Planning a trip to NYC?