This week, Town & Village intern and School of the Future High School student Kristy Ye-Ling asked her classmates and friends which African-American historical figure they admire most. February is Black History Month.
Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. delivered his famous “I Have a Dream” speech in August 1963. In recognition of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Day, on Monday, January 15, Town & Village intern Kristy Ye-Ling interviewed fellow students at Gramercy’s School of The Future, asking if they had ever experienced racism.
Joseph Dennis, Senior
“There was one time I was getting on the train to school and there was this Indian lady and black lady getting on together. But then the Indian lady wanted to sit and said, ‘Oh I don’t want to be near these brown people.’ I felt like I could’ve done something about it because obviously we’re in the 21st century and it’s annoying to keep on having racism brought up every single day.”
By Sabina Mollot
Taste of Gramercy Neighborhood, an annual street food fair/fundraiser held by the Gramercy Neighborhood Associates, will be celebrating its fifth event on Saturday, September 16.
Around 20 restaurants from the neighborhood will be involved, offering tasting of signature dishes, under an open sky. The event, as always, takes place along one block, Irving Place between 17th and 18th Streets, from noon-4 p.m.
The money raised from the event goes to two local schools, School of the Future and PS 40.
Alan Krevis, president of GNA, said the event has grown each year in terms of how many tickets get sold, with mostly local people attending as well as some visiting from out of town.
“It’s grown tremendously,” said Krevis. “Last year we sold almost 400 tickets, so it is changing. We’re getting all the foodies. It’s becoming a destination.”
UPDATE at 10:26 a.m.: Police said Marcus Campello has been found safe although a spokesperson for the department didn’t have details.
An 11-year-old student at School of the Future was reported missing early Wednesday, with police saying he was last seen at the Gramercy school Tuesday afternoon.
Marcus Campello, who lives on East 41st Street, also went missing last week. Police issued a similar alert last Friday morning, although Campello was found later in the day.
One law enforcement source said he ran away from home.
School of the Future is located at 127 East 22nd Street and Lexington.
By Sabina Mollot
On Saturday, Taste of Gramercy Neighborhood, the annual food tasting festival and fundraiser, took place under a sunny sky on Irving Place.
This year, 20 restaurants participated and the event’s organizer, the Gramercy Neighborhood Associates, sold 325 tickets. GNA President Alan Krevis said it was the best year so far — this was the third time the event was held — though he declined to share how much money the event raised. Net proceeds will be going to two neighborhood schools, PS 40 and School of the Future.
Meanwhile, the crowd of mostly neighborhood residents sampled dishes like rabbit meatball sliders from Ichabod’s, lobster rolls from Burger & Lobster, house cured Tasmanian sea trout from Barbounia and yellow tomato gazpacho from Adalya.
At the event was Claude and Shelley Winfield, residents of East Midtown Plaza, who said they’re regulars at many Gramercy restaurants, like Ponty Bistro and Casa Mono, and always on the lookout for new ones to try.
“Shelley and I try to support the neighborhood restaurants, otherwise you lose them,” said Claude, also the second vice chair of Community Board 6.
“If you use places in your area, all your streets are lit,” added Shelley. “A lot of people don’t know that.”
At TOGN for the first time was another couple who live in a building on the block where the event was taking place, between 17th and 18th Streets.
After sitting down at one of the streetside tables, both Liz and Mark Mindlin said they were impressed with all the options.
“The food is delicious so far,” said Liz, who added that while they often go to restaurants in the neighborhood, the event was the first time they’d heard of The Stand, a nearby comedy club and restaurant. “The food was very good,” she added.
A few of this year’s participating eateries also said the festival has been helpful in getting the word out about their businesses.
A returning restaurant was Ichabod’s, where Courtney Oakley, the director of events, said the event sometimes attracts foodies visiting from out of town (the W Hotel is nearby) as well as people from other neighborhoods.
She added, “This is something Brooklyn has always done very well, different festivals with great food. It’s wonderful that we’re having more of them in Manhattan.”
Greg Azzollini, one of the owners at the family-run Paul & Jimmy’s, agreed. “Just a few minutes ago I met someone who said he’d been in the neighborhood for 10 years and never tried us and now they’re going to come for dinner,” he added. “Plus it’s a nice way to meet other restaurant owners.”
By Sabina Mollot
On Saturday, Gramercy residents and foodies got to sample dishes from over 20 local restaurants, which were all participating in the second Taste of Gramercy Neighborhood event.
The outdoor food tasting event and fundraiser for the Gramercy Neighborhood Associates took place along one block on Irving Place with plenty of foot traffic despite some rain later on.
Tickets ranged from $30-$80 in price with the proceeds going to two local schools: PS 40 and School of the Future.
Terry Dougherty, a longtime Gramercy resident, was one of those who’d gotten a ticket.
“It seemed successful last year and it’s something I look forward to,” he said. “I enjoy all kinds of things that promote businesses.”
Another guest was Larry Oberfeld, who lives on the Upper East Side.
“It’s a nice way to sample all the different restaurants in the neighborhood,” said Oberfeld. “It’s a different thing to do when the weather’s nice.”
The following community and entertainment events are taking place this week.
Gramercy quality of life forum on July 15
Manhattan Community Board Six and Gramercy Neighborhood Associates are co-hosting a community forum with representatives from NYC agencies, moderated by City Councilmember Rosie Mendez on July 15 from 6 to 8 p.m.
Agencies will include New York County District Attorney’s office, NYPD’s 13th and 17th Precincts, Department of Sanitation, Department of Transportation, Parks Department and Department of Homeless Services.
It will take place in the School of the Future at 127 East 22nd Street between Park Ave and Lexington Avenue. Panelists will address quality of life issues in the Gramercy neighborhood, including homelessness, safety, traffic and sanitation. Residents can submit questions prior to the forum or in written form during the event.
For more information, contact firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
Lectures, dance lessons, kids’ events at Stuyvesant Square Park
The Stuyvesant Park Neighborhood Association presents the following upcoming events at Stuyvesant Square Park:
Lunch and Learn events take place on Wednesdays and Thursdays. Wednesday events, from 12:15-1 p.m., are hosted by NYU Hospital for Joint Diseases Horticultural Therapy and Integrative Health Programs. July 16: Mind body movement (meditation), July 23: Herbal tea party.
Thursday events, from 1:15-2 p.m. are hosted by Cornell University Cooperative Extension’s Jannie Wolff. July 24: Health and the uses of herbs.
Chair yoga Tuesdays with Birgit Nagele take place on July 15, 22 and 29 from noon-1 p.m. on the northwest lawn.
Tango Sundays with Esmerelda take place from 6-9 p.m. (beginner lessons at 6 p.m.) at the west fountain.
The NYC Parks Department presents “Play Mobile” on July 15 from 11 a.m.-3 p.m.
For updates and additional event information, visit spnanyc.org.
Movies on the Oval
Movies on the Oval has returned with a double-feature most Wednesdays through August 13 for ST/PCV residents and their guests. On July 16, 5 p.m. “The Croods,” 7 p.m. “The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug.”
Music Under the Stars
Waterside Plaza’s summer concert series, “Music Under the Stars,” has returned with Wednesday concerts at 7 p.m. each night. There will be a beer and wine bar, with snacks available at the concession stand or hardier fare at the Robbins Nest cafe. Seating is limited on the Plaza. Lawn chairs and blankets are welcome.
July 16, Kaissa will perform. Hailing from the Republic of Cameroon and its vibrant culture, singer Kaissa has become an unmistakable representative of African music. Rain date is July 17.
David Hershey-Webb and friends will return to Stuyvesant Cove Park to perform original folk, country rock and R&B music on Monday, July 14th at 6:30 p.m. The show is part of the free summer concert series presented by The Stuyvesant Cove Park Association. In the event of rain the performance will take place on Tuesday, July 15.
For even more events going on including outdoor concerts, theater, comedy, kids’ events and more see T&V’s Around & About section.
For free events happening throughout the city, see Cutting Corners.
For local fitness events like free yoga in Union Square and qi gong at Waterside, check out T&V’s Health & Fitness listings.
For the latest programming and special events at local houses of worship, there’s also the Religion in the Community listings.
By Sabina Mollot
Taste of Gramercy, the first food tasting event to be held in the neighborhood on Saturday, was a success, with organizers selling over 400 tickets.
While the nonprofit group that organized it, Gramercy Neighborhood Associates, wasn’t yet sure how much had been raised, since some tickets were $30 while others were $40 depending on if they were bought early or not, the event’s turnout exceeded expectations.
“People seemed to like that everything benefits local schools,” said GNA member Gary Horowitz.
Money raised from tickets will go to two local schools, PS 40 and School of the Future.
For the price of a ticket, guests got to try five tasting plates of food from any of the 20 participating restaurants, with the event held street fair style under an open sky. Anyone could walk into the blocked off area, which was on one block on Irving Place, though to try the foods, guests had to have a ticket.
Some of the culinary offerings included tuna tartare cannolis from The Stand, compressed apple with smoked tomato from Gramercy Tavern, paella with shrimp from Casa Mono, oyster shooters in a chilled coconut ginger soup from City Crab and raw macaroons and other desserts from Pure Food & Wine. Paul & Jimmy’s was a popular stop with guests getting their plates loaded up with helpings of meatballs, gnocci and eggplant rollatini.
The event was coordinated with the company PTG, which has also organized events like Taste of Sutton and Taste of Tribeca.
“I just love this one. This is cute,” said Jackie Palmer of PTG about Taste of Gramercy. “For their first year, it looks great and we’re already talking about next year.”
The vendors also seemed happy with the event, which they donated their food to.
Adele Carollo, general manager at The Stand, a comedy club and restaurant on Third Avenue, said the event was a good opportunity to showcase the club’s menu, since most people don’t think of comedy clubs when considering where to go eat.
“Most comedy clubs have a really bad reputation for food,” said Carollo, adding that at The Stand, a focus has always been the menu as well as the entertainment. “So when we heard about this (event), we were into it.”
Eric Sherman, owner of the new Irving Place restaurant Ichabod’s, said it was a good opportunity to market the business to area residents as well as for the restaurant community to network.
“You create a camaraderie with local businesses. It’s nice to know your neighbor,” he said. Sherman, who became a restaurateur with Ichabod’s, which features an American bistro menu, in February, added, “Your neighborhood is everything. You’ve got to do what your neighborhood calls for. I’m looking forward to doing this next year.”
GNA board member Antonella Napolitano said the only downside to ToG was that a couple of local restaurant owners ended up feeling slighted when they weren’t asked to participate. However, she said this was only because the organization was limited to one block for the event.
“We’re probably going to expand it next year,” she said.