SantaCon is headed to Bushwick
You might be about to cry, and we're telling you why: SantaCon, the annual St. Nick-themed bar crawl, is dashing through the snow all the way to Bushwick this year. Some Bushwick bar owners were shocked to find an email in their inboxes from SantaCon organizers letting them know that Santa and his blitzed reindeer will be bar-hopping in their 'hood. The event, held on Dec 13 this year, will place SantaCon-ers in Bushwick from 10am to 2pm before moving on to terrorize other neighborhoods. The email also asked if the bars would like to be listed as participating venues, which would guarantee they'd be as full as Santa's beard with holiday revelers. RECOMMENDED: Full guide to SantaCon in NYC If anything could make you nostalgic for hipsters dressed like Katniss Everdeen, it's this "charitable, non-commercial, non-political, nonsensical Santa Claus convention," which, despite its claim to be "cleaning up Santa's act this year," has garnered the nickname "Vomit Town USA." The event has also been challenged by East Village bar owners and the police. The accusations against the drunken Santas have included discriminatory behavior and public urination (imagine 30,000 of your worst neighbors intoxicated and dressed in polyester). Bushwick bar owners, residents and City Council members are protesting the spread of SantaCon even further into Brooklyn (the bar crawl included stops in Williamsburg in 2012 and downtown Brooklyn in 2013). Rafael Espinal Jr., chair of the Council's Consume
Social Soup Experiment this saturday on the High Line
As Ben Franklin and his kite remind us, great experiments combine persistence and (slight) insanity. Not to be outdone by history, the 4th Annual Social Soup Experiment this Saturday at The High Line is set to prove yet again that hundreds of strangers eating soup together on an abandoned train platform is a good idea. RECOMMENDED: Full High Line in NYC guide Hypothesis: Hot soup served out of a single bowl in a rustic outdoor setting will melt cold hearts and turn hangry New Yorkers into friends. For the fourth year in a row a local celebrity chef will serve soup to hundreds of strangers, seated at a communal table on the High Line at 14th street. Just $7 and will get you a space at the table and a bowl of Chef Marco Canora's signature robillita, a tuscan vegetable soup. Make conversation at one of the two mealtimes (11:30am and 2pm) with your fellow culinary scientists over soup dished up by Canora, the owner of Hearth and Terroir restaurants and chef behind NYC Food Flood, which provided immediate food relief after Sandy. Entrees at Hearth run up to $118, so the tuscan soup, made with locally sourced vegetables, served with a generous hunk of bread, is a steal. Participate in this great experiment by purchasing tickets online ahead of time, or risk hearing the most devastating sentence in the culinary world: "No soup for you."
Enjoy 8 hours of free art tomorrow at the High Line
How can we achieve balance between urban development and green space? That's the question being asked by Trees for Art, a fundraiser that's using art to raise money for the preservation of NYC's green spaces. The fundraiser begins tomorrow, with a pop-up exhibition of pieces from ten artists whose work examines the relationship between nature and the city. The gallery, located on the High Line at 14th street, is free from 10am to 6pm. RECOMMENDED: Full High Line in NYC guide The diverse collection of donated works includes oil paintings, photographs, digital prints and mixed media. In artist Kathleen Vance's piece, "Gifford's Forest," for example, green shoots sprout out of the top of an open suitcase, symbolizing the way New Yorkers often experience greenery: in cultivated snatches. After the art is displayed at the High Line, it will be auctioned online through the Bridgette Mayer Gallery on October 31. Proceeds will be split between four not-for-profit environmental organizations: New York Restoration Project, Friends of the High Line, Brooklyn Botanical Garden and Trees New York. Replicas of the work can also be seen in the windows of TD Banks throughout all five boroughs until the end of the month.
Six Open House New York events that you can still get tickets to
Open House New York is almost here! Though tickets are already sold out for many events, you can still reserve spots on some tours before registration closes Thursday. Here are six cool places you can still go to: RECOMMENDED: Read more on Open House New York Kings County Distillery: This tour of New York City's oldest operating whisky distillery is like a DIY Drunk History. Your will start in the Brooklyn Navy Yard, a National Historical Landmark, and make your way through 115 years of drunk patriotism, including a complementary tasting of Kings County's award-winning whiskey. (Oct 11 and 12, tours every 20 minutes between 10am and 2pm, $5) Urban Post-Disaster Housing Prototype: In the wake of the destruction of Sandy, the Office of Emergency Management and Department of Design and Construction looked to local artists and designers for solutions to provide post-disaster shelter in high-density areas. Entries from the "What If New York City..." competition were used to help design the environmentally efficient interim housing that will be used in the event of future catastrophes. A prototype of the 2-unit, 3-story design is available for tours throughout the weekend. (Oct 11 and 12, tours every half hour 11am-4:30pm, $5) Wall Street Photo Safari: Snap professional pics of the wolves of Wall Street and other wildlife with a professional architecture photographer, who will help you get the perfect shot of the Stock Exchange and other soaring edifices in the city's financial sav
Learn to make lovely watercolored holiday cards in Soho this Thursday
"Last Christmas, I gave you a card, the very next day, you gave it away," sang George Michael never...because he was obviously too good at crafting. This year, to save you from Christmas shopping tears, you can go to a Holiday Card Workshop at Young & Able in Soho this Thursday. At the event, which is hosted by illustrator Billur Kazaz and lifestyle magazine WTF, you'll learn how to make handmade cards, and hopefully become that cool friend who's too hip for store-bought nonsense. For $30, you'll learn basic watercolor techniques, and you'll wind up with six cards to give to your friends and family, or keep to admire later. If the brave new world of DIY and crafting makes you feel like you have Seasonal Affective Disorder, you can take a break and get your drink on at the bar. Or indulge in the culinary creativity of Taartwork, the couture pie makers whose homemade holiday creations, unlike cards, you can actually eat. The event is a part of a series of holiday workshops by Young & Able, a clothing store which focuses on emerging designers who use locally-sourced materials. Have fun creating, but please skip the nudity... Grandma doesn't need to see that.
Look into Gramercy Park with a new 360-degree panorama
As the popular saying goes, the best things in life are accessible only by owning property in an exclusive neighborhood. Until recently, Gramercy Park was one of those things. But now, thanks to software engineer and former Army sergeant Shawn Christopher, the last private park in New York City is getting some public exposure. Christopher took this 360-degree photo while on vacation last spring; he'd rented an apartment through Airbnb that came with the use of a coveted park key. Christopher recently posted his panorama photos to Google Maps. Christopher violated of 3 park rules: no pictures, no borrowing keys, and no entering unaccompanied by a key owner. No word yet on whether he attempted any sketching, which was made illegal under park law in the 19th century. Gramercy Park can only be entered using one of the 383 keys rented annually by park neighbors as well as certain exclusive clubs, and park officials have reportedly turned down filming requests from the likes of Robert De Niro and Woody Allen. Christopher says that he wasn't aware of the rules he was breaking. Arlene S. Harrison, the president of the Gramercy Park Block Association, says she is not going to ask Google Maps to take down the pictures. So thanks to the internet, you can now look the park's famous Calder sculpture and pristine botany, and thumb your nose at the man (or 383 men) without ever having to go outside. Between this and the announcement that Girl Scout cookies will now be sold online, we'r
Five events you shouldn't miss at Comic Arts Brooklyn
With great comic artists comes the responsibility of throwing great comic art festivals—that's what we imagine the folks at Comic Arts Brooklyn are saying, at least. This Friday through Sunday, the festival is bringing some incredible cartoon art events to Brooklyn, all for free. The annual festival boasts over 100 artists at several locations, and will feature talks, book signings, and retrospectives on the best comics. Pow! Here are five events you shouldn't miss: The MAD Fold-In Art of Al Jaffee (Scott Eder Gallery, Fri Nov 7, 6–9pm). Stare down the face (and oversized head) of the man who gave the world the infamous MAD Magazine fold-in. The exhibition includes twelve original works by the 93-year-old cartoonist, who still contributes regularly to MAD. He will also speak at 11am on Sunday at the Wythe Hotel. Book Sales and Signings (Mt. Carmel Church, Sat Nov 8, 11am–7pm). Marvel (see what we did there?) over the artists whose work you love at this book event. New Yorker cartoonist Adrian Tomine will be there, David Sandlin, the 2014 Guggenheim Fellowship winner will be there, you should be there. Re-Animator by Wizard Skull (Cotton Candy Machine, opening reception Sat Nov 8, 7–11pm). The artist known as Wizard Skull (just go with it) will display a series of works that bastardize classic animations like The Smurfs and My Little Pony by changing old, painted animation cells and adding new computer animation. Don't worry about the science, just worry about how you'
Drunk Zombie Hordes Return for 10th Annual ZombieCon Next Saturday
ZombieCon, New York's largest Zombie walk, is on the way, and it's hungry for fresh brains. ZombieCon kicks off its tenth year with "Zombiecon #10 Kaliphate" this Saturday 18, at a Lower East Side location released only to the truly undead (those who R.S.V.P. through Facebook or Twitter.) Part pride march, part bar-crawl, the walk begins at 1:30pm, but you can claw your way out of your coffin at 11:30am for a zombie makeover beforehand. The (slightly un-PC) theme calls for "anything Arabic or Middle Eastern, pharoahic, mummy, crusader, holy warrior, or zombie death cult," but the creators of the event also say they're also anticipating a lot of (totally un-PC) ebola references in this year's costumes. Yikes. The walk will culminate in a massive Zombie Bawl after party in the East Village, with hookah and fresh cerebellum for all.
Undressing History: Free Charles James Exhibit at National Arts Club
For four more days, voyeurs and aesthetes can celebrate the life of a man Cristobal Balenciaga called "the world's best and only dressmaker." "Charles James: Beneath the Dress," a free exhibition at The National Arts Club offers never-before-seen fashion drawings and erotic images by the artists, as well as a new short documentary, completely for free. The exhibit runs through October 5th and promises thrills of both the erogenous and fashion-conscious varieties. James is known for his dresses (you may remember the Met's exhibit), which are triumphs in structural engineering—they look like satin body armor and prove that tulle can be fierce. Known as the greatest Couturist, James' designs transcended fashion and became art. Christian Dior rightfully called his work "poetry." The mixed-media exhibition of his work focuses on his life as an artist, showing 60 drawings from the private collection of society columnist R. Couri Hay. The exhibit is worth a visit this weekend, but if you can't make it, or if titillating designs and 70s era filmmaking aren't for you, Edvard Muhnch (who painted "The Scream") is next up at The National Arts Club.
Support Parks and Eat Pie at Annual Harvest in the Square
There is more to Fall than the Pumpkin Spice Latte. Case in point: the Annual Harvest in the Square festival returns to Union Square Park tonight, with gourmet tastings by the who-and-the-what of local restaurants and wines, and over one-thousand people trying to pull off the color orange. In its 19th year the festival will bring the full menu from 40 neighborhood restaurants to the North Plaza, including Barbounia, Union Square Cafe, and Laut. It's clear from the menu that chefs are foregoing the traditional canned pumpkin flavoring and grocery-store pie fare in favor of butternut squash caponata bruschetta with handmade ricotta, currants and thyme, and pork belly and bacon tacos with cider apple pico de gallo (for example). The seasonal fare will be paired with wines and microbrews from the greater New York area, and the festival ambitiously claims that tastings will be "unlimited." The event, which begins at 7:30pm in the North Plaza, kicks off what is sure to be an interminably long holiday season with epicurean aplomb. Plus, the $150 ticket cost (get them online and show up early) goes to support the Union Square Partnership, a non-profit that maintains the clean, kale-filled Union Square Park we know and love.
Graffiti artists (legally) take over downtown Brooklyn Friday
People who weren't cool enough to do graffiti in high school can get the last laugh watching professional street artists create new works in downtown Brooklyn at Grove Alley Paint Nite tomorrow. The free event is the last Grove Alley shindig of the summer, so if you want to stand in an alley drinking beer and watching talented artists work, tomorrow between 5 and 11pm is your time to (spray)paint the town red. Paint Nite contains the golden trifecta of free events: live music, artsy vendors, and food trucks. Local bands F. Stokes, LEGS, and Napoleon will play along with DJ Chela. Food trucks will include Coolhaus, Kimchi Taco, Mamu Thai Noodle, and (thank the sweet atheist overlord,) Morris Grilled Cheese. According to the producer of the Grove Alley event series, “Grove Alley Paint Nite will pay homage to 5 Pointz in Long Island City by featuring street artists creating a mix of permanent artwork on the alley walls and temporary live artwork on canvas." Ignoring the irony of a local back alley and underground art form being co-opted by businesses and turned into a corporate event to celebrate a remote part of Queens, the excitingly named local street artists Praxis, brokeMC, and The Sole Rebel, and the group Stencil1will be on hand, creating live art. Their works will add to the murals created in last year's BEAT festival by See One and Don Rimx. Tucker Reed, President of the Downtown Brooklyn Partnership, says of the event, "This has truly been a golden opportunity to brin