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Upper East Side Neighborhood UES

Mar 26, 2014 at 04:25 pm by mikewood


nyc things to do manhattan brooklyn queens bronx staten island things to do events nyc

Upper East Side Neighborhood UES

A Closer Look at the Upper East Side Neighborhoods in Manhattan NYC

May 2018 / Upper East Side Neighborhood / Manhattan Buzz NYC. 

This section contains information about the neighborhoods of the Upper East Side of Manhattan NYC.  The Upper East Side has some of the finest restaurants, shopping and museums in New York City.  

Click here to enter the Upper East Side Neighborhood UES section of the site.


upper east side neighborhood upper east side nyc

east side neighborhood nyc manhattan upper east side nyc

Gracie Mansion - A Mansion with Grace

Historic Gracie Mansion is an Historic Museum & Mayoral Home

gracie mansion photos manhattan history nycApril 2, 2018 / Upper East Side Neighborhood / Manhattan History / Manhattan Buzz NYC.

Last year around the holidays, I attended a holiday event at Gracie Mansion hosted by the Mayor's office. The event included a walk through / tour of the mansion, followed by holiday beverages and treats in a large heated tent outside.

 

Carl Schurz Park on Upper East Side

Gracie Mansion is located in Carl Schurz Park between East End Avenue and the East River and between 83rd and 90th Streets. The mansion was built in 1799 by Archibald Gracie and enlarged about a dozen years later. At that time upper Manhattan was bucolic countryside.

According to Wikipedia, the surrounding park was once the site of one of John Jacob Astor's homes. The surrounding Carl Schurz Park was originally designed by Calvert Vaux [who co-deigned Central Park with Frederick Law manhattan history gracie mansion photos manhattan nycOlmstead] with Samuel Parsons, but it was later redone by Master Builder Robert Moses in the mid 1930's, after Moses ran the roadway for the FDR Drive underneath the park.

 

Gracie Mansion Becomes Mayor's Residence

A guide told us that Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia was the first to use Gracie Mansion as the Mayor's residence in the 1940's, and it has been the New York City Mayor's residence ever since - but not uninterrupted as former Mayor Michael Bloomberg never used Gracie Mansion as his residence.

At a later date I'll post some more about historic Gracie Mansion - the NYC Mayor's residence.


NYC Marathon Streamed Thru Manhattan

manhattan things to do manhattanNovember 13, 2017 / Upper East Side Neighborhood / Manhattan Neighborhoods / Manhattan Parks & Sports / Manhattan Buzz NYC.

On Sunday, November 5th the NYC Marathon came streaming through Midtown and the Upper East Side of Manhattan.

Over 50,000 runners completed the 26 mile run from Staten Island over the Verrazano Narrows Bridge through Brooklyn and Queens. They ran north along First Avenue on the Upper East Side [see photo at right] and crossed the Willis Avenue Bridge into the Bronx and did a U-turn crossing back over the Third Avenue Bridge before coming down south along Fifth Avenue and ending in Central Park on the southwest corner of the park.

manhattan things to do manhattanThe average time it took the runners was four hours and 39 minutes. Given many had left Staten Island at times ranging from 7 to about 10 am, this put the average crossing the finish line sometime between about noon and 3 pm. Many took longer, but as we all know, they are to be applauded for their hearty endurance.

I met one man while taking the subway uptown who told me he had run many a NYC Marathon, but had injured himself while prepping for this one. Nonetheless, he had friends who were running in it and so he was going to hop in the run in the Bronx and run down to Central Park with them before hopping out again. He said that to him the NYC Marathon day was the best day in New York City.

The first NYC Marathon was run in 1970 with 55 runners in Central Park organized by Fred Lebow and Vince Chiappetta. In 1976 they expanded the course to the streets of NYC and in 2016 the NYC Marathon had grown to become the world's largest marathon with over 51,000 finishers running the five borough course. By Michael Wood.


A Short Report & Photos of the Solar Eclipse of 2017 in NYC

The Solar Eclipse was an American Communal Shared Experience

August 21, 2017 / Queens Neighborhoods / Manhattan Neighborhoods / Gotham Buzz NYC.

manhattan solar eclipse photos nyc 2017I set about to experience the solar eclipse of 2017, departing for Manhattan at about 1.30 pm which was about the time the eclipse was to begin. As I made my way to the subway, I met a woman who was heading to Hunters Point South Park to do the same. She offered me the use of her eclipse glasses, which I examined but it was far too early to really use to any great effect.

 

Solar Eclipse Glasses were Opaque

The eclipse glasses were opaque and I couldn’t see through them looking down the street. Apparently they only work when you’re looking at the sun. The glasses this woman had were sponsored by Cisco Systems through a science camp in Rochester, NY. Consumers were advised to be careful about which eclipse glasses to use, as apparently some would not filter out the harmful, eye-damaging rays of the sun. One eclipse audience member told me that the glasses were being sold online – ten for $100. I’ll have more about the protective glasses a bit later as I used the glasses to take what I would call ‘meaningful’ photos.

There were many reports published about how one can damage their eyes by looking directly at the sun. The Washington Post noted that the damage can begin in as little as one and a half minutes, and that looking at the sun in a sequence of little peaks at a time, may not prevent you from doing real damage. It’s worth noting that one can also damage their camera by pointing it directly at the sun for a long period of time. The New York Times noted that the longest the full eclipse will last, is less than three minutes, and that in many places in America it will last less than a minute.

Solar Eclipse NYC 2017 on the Upper East Side

Anyhow, I arrived at Lexington and 77th Street about 2 pm, about 45 minutes before the peak of the eclipse.

Click here to read the rest of our report on the Solar Eclipse 2017 in NYC with photos of eclipse in Central Park Manhattan & a park in Queens.


5 Boro Bike Tour Rides On ...

The 5 Boro Bike Ride has Become an NYC Cultural Institution

May 8, 2017 / NYC Neighborhoods / Bikes Bicycle Events in Manhattan / Manhattan Buzz NYC.

5 boro bike ride 5 boro bike tour astoria park queensThe 5 Boro Bike Tour pedaled through the five boroughs on Sunday, for its 40th year. I have been covering the event for nearly a decade, enjoying conversations with the riders as they make their way through the streets of New York City, without having to contend with hostile traffic. It's a family-friendly event and helps fund bike safety and repair programs designed to teach children and adults how to enjoying bicycling in an urban environment.

Brief History of the 5 Boro Bike Tour NYC

The following is a summary of the 5 Boro Bike Tour history, gleaned from the Bike New York website at www.bike.nyc.

The event began in 1977, starting with a conversation between Sal Cirami of the American Youth Hostels bicycle committee and Eric Prager of the NYC Board of Education. Sal was interested in creating more bicycle-friendly streets, while Prager had been asked to develop a bicyle safety program for NYC school children.

bike shops astoria bike shops lic bike shops queens bike shopsThe program started with bicycle safety and repair, and the 5 Boro Bike Ride was to be the culminating event for the participants. Thus on June 10, 1977 Sal, Eric and 250 entrants - most of which also came from bicycle clubs - made their way from Flushing Meadows Corona Park in Queens, down through Brooklyn, over the Verrazano-Narrows Bridge to Staten Island, ferrying back over to Manhattan, and traversing up through Manhattan to the Bronx, before crossing over the Throggs Neck Bridge back to Queens, terminating at Flushing Meadows Corona Park. The streets weren't closed, but the riders were provided with an NYC police escort.

The next year, the newly-elected Mayor Koch, supported the idea of a 5 Boro Bike Tour with city resources. The ride was shortened to 40 miles and the NYPD shut down a moving 40 block long section of streets to pave the way for the cyclists to pass. That year the cyclist count rose to 3,000. Two years later, in 1980, the MTA subway workers went on strike and the 5 Boro Bike Tour participation swelled to 12,000 and then grew to 32,000 before the city capped the ride at that number where it has remained ever since.

5 Boro Bike Tour: Queens, Manhattan, Bronx, Brooklyn & Staten Island

bike maps bike paths bike routes 5 boro bike ride tonys bicycle shop bike repairs astoria bike shops astoriaAccording to Bike New York, this year the 5 Boro Bike Tour attracted 32,000 participants from all 50 states and 65 countries. It was a cool, cloudy day with temperatures in the 50's and 60's. In the mid / late afternoon came a bit of drizzle, but by then I believe most - if not all - had completed the ride. I made my way up to the Astoria rest stop where vast crowds of cyclists converge beginning at between 8 and 9 am and which then continues for a couple of hours, before tapering down by around noon.

I arrived on the tail end of the ride, where I could watch the bicyclists who preferred to take the ride slowly, were streaming along northward along the eastern perimeter of Astoria Park. I made my way down to the rest stop, located in the parking lot just under the RFK / Triborough Bridge, where there were toilets, food and bike repair services available to the riders on their 40 mile journey.

One of the riders I conversed with later that afternoon told me it was exhiliarating to see New York City on bike and to be joined by so many other bicycle enthusiasts from around the city, nation and planet. The entrance fees [$100 for a standard ticket / packet] from the 5 Boro Bike Tour go to Bike New York which is a non-profit dedicated to teaching cyclists about bike repairs and bike safety. Registration generally starts the second week of January and closes out fairly quickly as the 5 Boro Bike Tour is limited to 32,000 cyclists. TD Bank was the sponsor this year as it has been for a number of years.


NY Peace Film Festival

Trying to Bring the Planet to its Senses … One Film at a Time

March 20, 2017 / Upper East Side Neighborhood UES / Cinema & Film in Manhattan / Manhattan Buzz NYC.

ny peace film festival nycI attended the 10th annual Peace Film Festival in Manhattan this past weekend. The two day event was held at the All Souls Unitarian Church on Lexington Avenue at 80th Street on the Upper East Side. The festival included about a dozen films covering issues, events and people from around the world, including Africa, the Middle East, the Far East, Latin America and California.

The photo at right is a still from a movie about a lovers relationship between a western woman and a Japanese man in Hiroshima around the time of the dropping of the nuclear bomb.

NY Peace Film Festival History in NYC

I had an opportunity to talk to one of the NY Peace Film Festival co-founders, Yumi Tanaka who provided me with a brief history. The festival began in 2007 when Yumi and co-founder Jonathan Fluck [and a mutual friend who dropped out after the first year] decided to put together a cultural event to showcase conflicts in a multi-dimensional cultural event. Yumi is a standup comedian, their mutual friend had a theatrical background and Jonathan is a social activist, so together they assembled an ensemble that included film, dance, music and poetry in the first year [2007]. The event was held at the Tenri Shinto Church off Union Square.

ny peace film festival nyc

The next year Yumi and Jonathan morphed the event into a film festival to enable them to better manage it, as live performance requires considerable additional time, rehearsal space and the like, while film followed by live or Skyped talks made the festival more manageable. A few years ago the festival relocated to the All Souls Unitarian Church on the Upper East Side where they were this weekend.

When I arrived the church was closed, but there’s an entrance a bit south of the main entrance to the church, leading into meeting facilities [see photo at right]. Tickets were a very reasonable $12 and were good for the day and multiple films. The audience was comprised of an eclectic set of New Yorkers, including artists and film enthusiasts and social activists.

Click here to read the rest of our report about the NY Peace Film Festival in NYC including film photos and some discussion about them.


Rosh Hashanah Begins Sunday

The Jewish New Year Begins with the Feast of Trumpets

September 28, 2016 / Manhattan Neighborhoods / Manhattan Holidays & Ethnic Culture / Manhattan Buzz.

things to do manhattan this weekendOn Sunday, October 4th at sundown, the Jewish New Year begins. The festival commemorates the creation of Adam and Eve and is rung in with a sounding of the shofar, which is a ram's horn that is shaped like a trumpet.

The New Year celebration lasts two days and is also a period of judgment. People are divided into three classes - the righteous, the evil and those who fall in between. Each class is dealt with accordingly, and those who fall in between have ten days to reflect on their lives ending in Yom Kippur wherein they are expected to atone for wrong deeds.

Rosh Hashanah also includes the serving of a few symbolic foods including vegetables such as dates, leeks, spinach and squash. Apples are cut and served with honey [along with a honey bread] to symbolize a sweet year and the challah bread is served to symbolize the cyclical nature of the year. Gefilte [stuffed] fish is also a Rosh Hashanah staple.

I attended Rosh Hashanah at Chabad LIC in 2011 where I met Rabbi Yitzchok who is an artist and had several works on display. In the artwork above right he depicts scenes from Orthodox Jewish life in the Brooklyn neighborhoods of Williamsburg and Crown Heights in pop art silk screens.


Panorama Music Fest on Randalls Island

Three Day Musical Festival Strikes a Grammy Chord

sza performing at the panorama music festival randalls island nycJuly 25, 2016 / Randall's Island Manhattan / Music in Manhattan / Queens Buzz.

I attended the Panorama Music Festival on Randall's Island this past weekend. The music festival featured dozens of top and second tier bands and musicians with the event starting Friday and ending Sunday night. Some of the music festival headliners included award winning groups like Kendrick, Alabama Shakes and the return of LCD after a ten year hiatus. Panorama also featured a number of other highly regarded, well known groups - many of which are likely to continue gaining recognition.

In the photo at right, vocalist Sza, is performing in the Pavilion at the Panorama Music Festival on Randalls Island on Sunday.

The weather over weekend was a very seasonal hot, with temperatures hitting nearly 100 on Saturday [high 98], before descending into the low 90's on Sunday. But the island breeze coming across the East River on Randall's Island and not-too-high humidity, made strolling around the event campus not only doable, but enjoyable. There was also a public water station where you could refill your water bottle [free] and there was ample shade within the tree filled park.

panorama music fest sceneThe crowd dressed for Panorama to beat the heat, more than anything else. This translated into a near beach-like scene for people-watching, with many youthful men and women enjoying the glow of their Adonis-like years. In 1992 there was a gender equality lawsuit, which contested women's right to go topless without being arrested - a right men enjoyed in this country since its founding. More than a decade later, in 2015, panhandlers in Times Square began asserting that right by painting their bare breasts with American flags and other designs, while soliciting tips from resident and tourist passers-by, for the pleasure of viewing them. These 'performance artists' were nicknamed the 'Desnudas'.

NYS and NYC Government officials found a way to reign in this practice - as it was creating quite a stir - by confining the solicitations to specified areas within the Times Square Plaza. Fast forward to 2016 and things continue to evolve, with women now wearing swimsuit / lingerie-like tops as fashion statements, some of which were on display at the Panorama Music Festival.

In the photo at right, a woman sports a fashionable swimsuit / lingerie-like top, at the Panorama Music Festival on Randall's Island.

We'll have a bit more later this summer, including video and a discussion of some of the art on exhibit at the Panorama Music Festival on Randall's Island in NYC.


Bethesda Fountain in Central Park

Emma Stebbins' Statue Commemorates NYC's Water System

bethesda fountain central parkMay 23, 2016 / Upper East Side Neighborhood UES / Manhattan Parks / Gotham Buzz.

The Angel of the Waters statue stands atop the fountain in the midst of Bethesda Terrace in Central Park. According to the Parks Department, the terrace was built 1859 - 1864 and according to Wikepedia the statue was designed in 1868 and unveiled in 1873. The Parks Department notes that this was the only statue commissioned in tandem with the opening of Central Park.

In the early 1800's New York City was an unsanitary place and the water was a conduit for the spread of cholera. By the mid 1800's the city had developed the Croton Aqueduct [1842] to transport fresh clean water down into the city, which more or less permanently ended the cholera epidemic.

Around the middle of the 19th century the plans for Central Park were being made, and hence Bethesda Fountain and the Angel of the Waters were included to celebrate and commemorate the accomplishment of something good [fresh clean water] for everyone living in New York City and beyond. The Angel of the Waters references a biblical passage from the gospel of St. John where an angel bestows healing powers upon a pool called Bethesda.

Bethesda Terrace and Fountain are found in the center of the park between 72nd and 76th Streets. The fountain overlooks the lake and boats may be rented at the Loeb Boathouse which is off to one's right when looking at the lake from the fountain.


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NYC Cigar Bars - Upper East Side Manhattan

Bar & Books on the Upper East Side NYC

nyc cigar bars upper east side manhattan UES nycJanuary 26, 2016 / Upper East Side Neighborhood UES / Restaurants & Bars on the Upper East Side UES / Manhattan Buzz NYC.

I’ve walked by the Bar & Books on Lexington Avenue numerous times, and occasionally stepped in to see what it looked like close up and to see who was there. So around the holidays, I had a special guest in town who is a bit of a cigar aficionado. After dinner one evening, we took a walk along Lexington Avenue looking at store windows on our way down to the Bar & Books between 72nd and 73rd Streets.

The Bar & Books takes reservations, which I had made just to be certain we’d be able to get in to enjoy a fine cigar to close out the evening. It was a weekday night, so as it turned out, it wasn’t necessary, and we found a table just off the bar in the center of the establishment.

An attractive woman, with the look of a James Bond ‘girl’, waited on us. My friend had a Macallan 12 year scotch, while I ordered a glass of Malbec wine. We settled in, checking our coats and keeping our bags on the chairs of the table next to us. The walls of the Lexington Avenue Bar & Books are lined with shelves of books, which I suppose you could read if you were inclined to read Rabkin A. Johnson’s Current Legal Forms with Tax Analysis - which I can only imagine would be the case in the worst of circumstances - and tonight was no such night.

Click here for the rest of our report on NYC cigar bars on the Upper East Side of Manhattan.


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The Yorkville Nutcracker at the Kaye Theater

Blend of Beauty & Grace at an Enthralling Pace

December 12, 2015 / Upper East Side Neighborhood / Manhattan Dance & Theater NYC / Gotham Buzz.

yorkville nutcracker dances patrelle upper east side things to do UESI just returned from a magical trip into an imaginary wonderland of dance. There’s an afterglow one gets from performances such as this, which challenge a writer’s ability to convey the feeling, that’s nearly indescribable, along the lines of love …

But that said I’ll give it a try. And if not successful, you'll get a second chance as I captured some of the performance on video. And given that a picture says a thousand words, then video must be good for at least as many words.

It was a near balmy evening as I made my way to the Kaye Theater on 68th Street between Park and Lex on the Upper East Side. The Yorkville Nutcracker was to begin at 7 pm and I arrived with just enough time to pick up my ticket and make my way up to the balcony. The Kaye Theater is fairly spacious theater (in as far as Manhattan theaters go) and well kept, seating well over 500 people for each performance.

It wasn’t long before the lights dimmed, and the curtain rose, and the performance of The Yorkville Nutcracker at the Kaye Theater on the Upper East Side began.


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Park Avenue Tree Lighting Event UES NYC

Park Avenue Tree Lighting Event Commemorates Sacrifice

Updated w/ Photos & Video December 15, 2015 / Upper East Side Neighborhood UES / Manhattan History NYC / Gotham Buzz.

park ave tree lighting UES nycI stumbled upon a holiday celebration this year, that is one of the little gems in the living history of Manhattan – the Park Avenue Tree Lighting event. It began in 1945, only months after the conclusion of the Second World War. It was dedicated to those who fought so bravely to defend our American rights and freedoms, and to those who made the ultimate sacrifice: their lives.

What follows is a history of the various people and organizations that have contributed to maintaining this living tribute to those American soldiers, as well as a real time account of the 2015 Park Avenue Tree Lighting event in the photos and video that accompany the story.

Several of the Upper East Siders with whom I conversed, told me that attending this holiday event has become one of their annual family traditions. The event is non-denominational where all are welcome, although it's worth mentioning that the event has some Christian cultural DNA embedded in the speeches and the music. But that said, the event is designed to be inclusive embracing all cultures and peaceful worship, which is one of the American freedoms for which those brave soldiers being commemorated tonight, gave their lives.

Click here to read about the history and see the video of the Park Avenue Tree Lighting event on the Upper East Side of Manhattan.


NYC Marathon: A Brief History

A Closer Look At The NYC Marathon Course & Runners

nyc marathon photosNovember 2, 2015 / Upper East Side Neighborhood & Manhattan Neighborhoods / Manhattan Sports / Gotham Buzz. Every year about 50,000 runners converge on New York City on the first weekend of November to run in the New York Marathon. The race begins at 8.30 am with the wheelchair division, is followed at 8.52 am by the athletes with disabilities and handcyclers. And then from 8.55 am until 11 am a horde of 50,000 runners passes the starting line on their 26 mile journey ending in Central Park.

The course has changed since the first NYC Marathon and now runs through all five boroughs, starting in Staten Island, coming up through western Brookyn, cutting through Long Island City between the Pulaski and Queensboro Bridges and then looping up along the Upper East Side before circling back around just north of the Harlem River in the Bronx and heading back south into Manhattan and terminating in Central Park.

The race lasts about eleven hours, as the official end time is 7.30 pm, but the reality is that it's mostly over by about 5 pm. The NYC Marathon began in 1970 and the first one was held entirely in Central Park by having the runners circle around the park on various roadways multiple times. And, of course, it was a much smaller group of runners.

NYC Marathon Runner Demographics by the NYT

photos nyc marathonThe NYT published a report about the NYC Marathon demographics. In it they noted that about three quarters of the runners make it over the finish line, and that about 40% of the runners are now women, which is up significantly from none in the first NYC Marathon in 1970.

This year only 48% of the runners are Americans, while another 4.5% come from Canada and Mexico, France and Italy represent 14% of the runners [split about evenly], and Britain, Germany and the Netherlands are another 15% (contributing in descending order], other parts of Europe, Latin America, Japan & China, Austrailia and South Africa.

Age-wise the largest group is between 30 and 40, the 2nd largest between 40 and 50, and a good measure from the 20 to 30 and the 50 to 60 demographics. Apparently many reaching their 40th and 50th birthdays like to 'prove that they still have it'. You can find the full report on www.nytimes.com, including some fun graphs.

NYC Marathon Winners Past & Present

The last time an American won the Marathon was in 2009 [Meb Keflezighi - a 2004 Olympic silver medalist born in Eritrea], and the last American winner born in the United States was Bill Rodgers in 1979. This year Meb was the first place finisher among all Americans and he broke the record for Masters Runners.

This year the winner for men was Stanley Biwott of Kenya who ran the NYC Marathon in 2:10:34, the winner for women was Mary Keitany, also from Kenya, who ran the course in 2:24:25, making this her second win in as many years. In the Wheelchair division, Ernst Van Dyk of South Africa beat Josh George of USA by one second coming in at 1:30:54. In the women’s wheelchair division, Tatyana McFadden a Russian-born American, broke the NYC Marathon course record by seven minutes. It's been quite a year for her as she also won the marathon in Boston, Chicago and London this year.

Men's & Women's Marathon Times

As you can see by the times above, the best marathoners generally make the trip in a bit more than two hours, which means they ran at a pretty good clip of almost 13 miles per hour for over two hours. And it's worth mentioning that the gap between male and female NYC Marathon runners has been closing and at present is about 15 minutes.

Organizers & Sponsors of the NYC Marathon

New York Road Runners or NYRR is the organizer of the NYC Marathon and this year Tata Consultancy Services or TCS is the premier sponsor. TCS is an Indian software and IT services company based in Mumbai [formerly Bombay].


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Columbus Day Parade NYC

Upper East Side Welcomes Celebration of Italian Heritage in America

October 13, 2015 / Upper East Side Neighborhood / Manhattan Parades / Manhattan Buzz NYC / by Michael Wood.

Columbus Citizen Foundation

columbus day parade photos & video nyc 2015It was a near perfect day as I made my way to the Upper East Side to watch the Columbus Day Parade in Manhattan. The parade is organized by the Columbus Citizen Foundation. The Columbus Citizen Foundation was formed in 1944 under the leadership of Judge S. Samuel Di Falco and Generoso Pope.

Generoso Pope

Generoso Pope's life was one of those American success stories. He came to America just after the turn of the century and died a mega millionaire, having made his money in construction. He was also the publisher of a number of Italian language newspapers and a strong supporter of FDR. In 1934 FDR made Columbus Day a national holiday, which some believed was at Generoso Pope's urging.

Columbus Monument & Columbus Circle on the Upper West Side UWS

Pope and Di Falco established the Columbus Citizen Foundation in 1944 which, as mentioned above, is the organizer of the Columbus Day Parade event. According to the Columbus Citizen Foundation website, the parade had been institutionalized in 1929. Prior to the institution of the parade there was a wreath laying ceremony at Columbus Circle to commemorate the anniversary of Columbus's discovery. Columbus Monument in Columbus Circle was erected in Manhattan in 1892 to celebrate the 400th anniversary of Columbus' discovery.

Click here for more about the history of the Columbus Day Parade in NYC, including photos and a video of it along the Upper East Side.


Manhattan Swimming Pools

NYC Public Pools: Hours & Specific Facilities Unconfirmed

manhattan swimming pools nycUpdated June 15, 2015 / Manhattan Neighborhoods NYC / Manhattan Parks & Sports / Gotham Buzz. Manhattan offers easy access to a wide range of recreational swimming pools. The following is our first attempt to provide you with a view of the range of public swimming pools available in the parks of Manhattan. We encourage you to make use of these facilities because they provide healthy, fun, and frequently free or inexpensive entertainment for both individuals and families with children.

Note that we may link to member home pages that have some relationship to these parks and / or their activities. This empowers you can follow these links to learn more about or become involved in a community or cultural group.

Click here to view a listing of Manhattan swimming pools including UES Upper East Side, UWS Upper West Side, Midtown, East Village, West Village, SoHo and Tribeca swimming pools.


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- Add Back Foto

Upper East Side History / UES Historical Sites

Upper East Side Neighborhood UES / NYC History & Historical Sites Manhattan / Manhattan Buzz NYC.

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

Upper East Side History – Farmlands & Railroads 1780’s – 1830’s

The Upper East Side was farmland as recently as the mid 1800’s. According to Wikipedia, a large swath of the Upper East Side neighborhood was purchased from the heirs of David Provoost [died 1781] by John Jones, a local businessman. The large swath of land, encompassing the area now represented by 66th to 76th streets and from 3rd Avenue to the East River, was parceled into smaller lots among Jones’ offspring.

In 1837 the New York and Harlem Railroad cut its way through the woodlands of what is now the Upper East Side neighborhood to provide a railway route north, eventually traveling up to Boston after the railway finally found a means through which to build railroads through the hilly / mountainous countryside of Connecticut.

Click here to read the rest of our report about the history of the Upper East Side of Manhattan & UES historical sites. And click here to see a listing of things to do on the Upper East Side UES.


Upper East Side Neighborhood - Page Directory

Upper East Side PhotosClick or Scroll To See News & Events Pertaining To The Upper East Side Neighborhood

On Site Directory


things to do upper east side nyc

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Events & Attractions: Things To Do On The Upper East Side

UES Things To Do This Weekend & Every Weekend

Upper East Side Neighborhood UES / 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.

You can also view a list of venues offering things to do in Midtown NYC, as well as down in the East Village things to do NYC.

Click here to go to our Things To Do Upper East Side section. And click here to view a history of the Upper East Side including UES historical sites.


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NYC Museums: The Frick Collection

A Gilded Age Mansion Turned Art Museum In NYC

frick collection frick museum manhattan museums uesUpper East Side Neighborhood UES / Art Museums Manhattan NYC / Gotham Buzz.

A year ago I had the opportunity to attend the opening presentation of a new arrival at The Frick Collection on the Upper East Side of Manhattan. It was a beautiful May day as I walked north along the east side of Central Park. I noticed banners hanging from the street lights on Fifth Avenue announcing the opening of the new art exhibit at The Frick Collection.

The museum was once the home of Henry Clay Frick. Henry Frick grew up in southwestern Pennsylvania in the middle of the 19th century. By the time Frick was thirty he and his cousins had cornered the lion's share of the coke business in the state of Pennsylvania. Coke was made by burning off the unstable elements in coal, thus making it a reliable high-intensity fuel that was relatively abundant and inexpensive to produce. In the 19th century coke was used to fuel the blast furnaces of the steel mills, a practice which continues to this day in many steel plants around the world.

The Frick Collection: History Of Henry Clay Frick

henry clay frick mansion ues upper east side mansions manhattanIn the early 1880's Henry Clay Frick's coke company joined Andrew Carnegie's steel company. The merged companies became a vertically integrated enterprise which subsequently provided Frick's coke company with a steady buyer of its product, and provided Carnegie's steel company with a steady source of fuel. Together these enterprises grew rapidly, and in the process made Frick and Carnegie, two of the wealthiest men in America.

Both the coke and steel industries had employment issues related to working conditions, fair pay and health hazards. The unions attempted to organize their labor forces and were beaten back by the joint enterprise of the Frick Coke Company and the Carnegie Steel Company, lead by Henry Clay Frick. Frick oversaw the effort to thwart them, meeting force with force. Several men died in the clash and henceforth Frick has been vilified as one of the 19th century, industrialist robber barons. But Frick is not alone as one of the robber barons, as the likes of his cohort Andrew Carnegie [steel], J.P. Morgan [banking], John D. Rockefeller [oil] and Jay Gould [banking] are just a few of those who are included in this category.

In 1911, J.P. Morgan finessed a deal that merged together the Carnegie Steel Company, with several other enterprises, into what became U.S. Steel. U.S. Steel was, in the early 20th century, one of the largest corporations in America, and at its peak controlled nearly two thirds of American steel production. It's important to add that this was at a time when steel was growing as one of the essential building materials of its time, as it was being used to build trains, railroads, ships, electrical generators and beginning to be used in new inventions like automobiles, elevators, high rise construction [Flatiron Building], appliances [telephones] and as shipping containers [cans] for consumer products.

Upper East Side: Once Home To Robber Barons

frick collection frick museum manhattan museums uesMany of the robber barons lived in Manhattan along Fifth Avenue in what is today called the Midtown and the Upper East Side neighborhoods. The robber barons gave some portion of their considerable wealth back to the communities in the form of art [Frick], education [John D. Rockefeller bankrolled the University of Chicago], art & history [J.P. Morgan to the Metropolitan Museum and his home is the Morgan Library & Museum] and libraries [Andrew Carnegie gifts helped start about half the public libraries in the U.S.].

Carnegie is the most notable philanthropist, as he gave nearly all of his $300 million wealth away [equivalent of tens of billions and likely more today] before he died. And Jay Gould is most notable in the other extreme, as he's reputed to not have given a dime back to the community. But that said, it's worth noting that one of Jay Gould's heirs subsequently donated Lyndhurst Mansion in Tarrytown to the National Historic Trust. But I digress.

Frick had a taste for art and objets d'art. From the beginning of his economic ascendance he began collecting. And as his wealth grew, he began acquiring many of the world's artistic and aesthetic treasures. Before he died, he bequeathed some of his wealth to the communities of western Pennsylvania in the form of the mansions he built and / or lived in, along with many of the fine art, furniture and objets d'art he had purchased during his lifetime. Western Pennsylvania and Pittsburgh are home to much of what Frisk left the public.

Click here to read the rest of our report about The Frick Collection / Frick Museum / Frick Mansion on the Upper East Side UES.


The Jewish Museum Manhattan

Culture And Continuity: The Jewish Journey Provides A Fascinating Account Of The Travels Of The Jewish Diaspora

jewish museum nycApril 13, 2015 / Upper East Side Neighborhood UES / Manhattan History / Gotham Buzz. I visited the Jewish Museum on the Upper East Side of Manhattan a couple of weeks ago. It was only a day before Passover was to begin. I went looking to view an art exhibit about Passover, and came away with far, far more.

The Jewish Museum originated in 1904 at the Jewish Theological Seminary on the Upper West Side. It began with a donation of 26 objects by Judge Mayer Sulzberger, father of Arthur Hays Sulzberger. Arthur Hays Sulzberger married Iphigene Ochs, daughter of Adolph Ochs, owner and publisher of the New York Times. Coincidentally the gift was made and the Jewish Museum was created the same year that the New York Times moved to Longacre Square, which today is known as Times Square.

In 1947 the Jewish Museum moved into its current location. The current building was the donation of Frieda and Felix Warburg. Over time the Jewish Museum expanded into the building next to it. In time the buildings were remodeled to look as one building. The Jewish Museum evolved from a museum of Jewish religion into a museum of Jewish culture and art, a sampling of which we've included in the photo and in this short report.

The photo above shows some of the artifacts of Jewish culture from locations in Europe, Asia, Africa and the Americas.


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Manhattan St Pat's Day Irish Pubs, Restaurants & Historic Bars in NYC 2022

Historic Manhattan St Pat's Day Pubs, Irish Bars & Restaurants On St. Patrick's Day In NYC, UES, UWS, Midtown & Village

manhattan irish pubs bars restaurants manhattan ues uws midtown east village irish pubs bars restaurants manhattan nycMarch 11, 2022 / Manhattan Neighborhoods NYC / Manhattan Restaurants NYC / Manhattan 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 Manhattan 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 the Upper East Side [UES], the Upper West Side [UWS], Midtown Manhattan as well as the East Village, as McSorley's remains not just a pub, but a good piece of history.

St Patrick's Day is on a Thursday this year.

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

At a later date we'll add a bit of history of St. Patrick's Day.

Click here to read our report about the St Pat's Day Bars, Irish Pubs & Restaurants in Manhattan NYC. We'll begin our journey on the Upper East Side UES where the Manhattan St. Patrick's Day Parade ends and then work our way around the rest of Manhattan.


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Greek Parades & Greek Holidays Manhattan

Greek Traditions Celebrated in Manhattan NYC

May 2017 / Upper East Side Neighborhood UES / Manhattan Parades & Holidays in Manhattan / Manhattan Buzz NYC.

This section is dedicated to Greek parades in Manhattan and Greek holidays in Manhattan.  There's a large Greek population in the NYC metro area which makes obtaining authentic Greek food and culture accessible.

The photo at right is a shot of the Greek parade making its way up 5th Avenue on the Upper East Side of Manhattan.

Click here to read reports and view photos of the Greek Parade & Greek Holidays in Manhattan.


Art Show At The Armory

things to do upper east sideMarch 8, 2015 / Upper East Side Things To Do / Manhattan Art Shows / Gotham Buzz. I attended the Art Show at the Park Avenue Armory on Sunday afternoon, as the five day show was about to end, and things were winding down. The Art Show provides visitors and buyers with a depth and breadth of beauty that spans both media and time.

One of my first stops was at the Hirscl & Adler Galleries booth where they had curated an exhibit entitled Winold Reiss And Jazz Age Modernism. It was an Art Deco exhibit that carried some of the style and vibration from the jazz age of the 1920's and 1930's into the present.

The photo at right was taken at the Hirschl & Adler Galleries booth at the show. The painting comes from the Winold Reiss estate. Winold Reiss [born 1886] was a German born American artist who was fascinated by his adopted home [America]. Early in his career he began venturing west to capture the American Indian in an unjudgmental aesthetic. He returned to New York and was drawn to the Harlem Renaissance of the 1920's and beyond.

The Hirschl & Adler Galleries also displayed several of Winold's abstract works which showed the progression from the characterization of the real to the abstract. One of the works appeared to have significant influences of Cubism in it.

And this was just the beginning of my foray into the 2015 Art Show at the Park Avenue Armory.

I would literally see thousands of art works that one cannot see in a museum, as they are privately owned. But with some luck some of these pieces will eventually end up in museums, as they were created by masters of the 20th century. More to come at a later date including a photo slide show.


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The Winter Antiques Show NYC

A Fascinating World Of Cultural Collectibles

winter antiques show nyc 2015January / Upper East Side UES Neighborhood / Manhattan History / Art in Manhattan / Gotham Buzz.

I attended the Winter Antiques Show at the Park Avenue Armory on the Upper East Side [UES]. It was my first visit, although I had walked past it over the course of many Winters, on my way home from work. Little did I know what pleasant surprises awaited.

It didn’t take me long to figure out that the name - Winter Antiques Show - is as old as some of the items on display and is in much need of an update. At the show I found a fascinating world of cultural collectibles – many of which dated back a century or more - but also many of which were from the 20th century. The cut off for exhibited pieces is 1969.

 

For most of us furniture is what first comes to mind when one hears the word antique, but this was nothing like the Antiques Road Show. It encompassed a much broader selection of winter antiques show nycthings. I would soon encounter specialists in the fields of rare books, Venetian glass, impressionist paintings, Chinese porcelains, European jewelry, French furniture and early American and British photography.

Within these categories I would found treasures that included an original book authored by Benjamin Franklin, early Venini glass, a couple of William Merritt Chase paintings [the Chase school of art was the predecessor of the Parsons School of Design], porcelains from the Ming Dynasty, early Cartier jewelry and photos of a young Senator Kennedy and a defiant Winston Churchill signed by the photographers who took them.

Click here to read the rest of our story about the Winter Antiques Show NYC at the Park Avenue Amory on the Upper East Side. The story includes a photo slide show of many of the rare antiquities and objets d’arte.