Giglio an Italian Tradition – East Harlem

A  NYC Sunday event

I enjoy going to local events like the Giglio Feast in East Harlem. While there is plenty of food – Italian sausage sandwich, grilled corn, clams and zeppole (Italian doughnuts).the main event is the lifting of the Giglio. 

The Giglio is a 75 tall wooden tower weighing over 8,000 lbs adorned with beloved saints and flowers topped with our St. Anthony Statue.

On the platform of the Giglio sits a full band along with a singer playing live music. The Giglio tower & band are carried on the shoulders of 120 members and danced through the streets.

Established in 1908 in Italian East Harlem, once the largest Little Italy in America, it now continues the tradition on a smaller neighborhood scale.



NYC — small Art Galleries worth visiting

This is a follow-up from a previous post Fall in Central Park –Metropolitan Museum Area

Today, I visited three very small art galleries just a half-block from 5th Avenue on east 79th Street. While they might not be your primary destination, I am confident it will add to your NYC experience.


Let’s get our bearings. Just north of east 79th Street is the Metropolitan Museum. To the south is the Frick Museum and at the corner of  East 79 and 5th Avenue is the Ukrainian Institute. If you are in Central Park, then you might be at the Obelisk or the area around the Belvedere Castle/Turtle Pond.

 Each gallery is in a brownstone and their spaces are small but very tranquil.  I’ve found the staff at each  gallery to be pleasant. You are left to enjoy the art works at your own pace. If you are interested in a studying different themes of art and seeing the modernism,  abstract and deciphering themes of art.  Each gallery is free and they do change their themes during the year.

NYC note: Most New York City galleries enjoy having people come in and look at their art. Often though, you may feel a little intimidated but I walk up those few steps and later you will come down with a smile and the satisfaction that you went inside. 

I have placed a sampling from each gallery below. I, purposely,did not identify the gallery each came from, I would like you to consider them as a combined example for your visit.

Skarstedt Gallery

20 East 79th St.

Acquavella Galleries

18 E 79th St.

Rosenfeld Gallery

16 E 79th St.

Note: There is a coffee shop at the corner of East 79th Street and Madison Avenue. Also, around the corner are more places to eat. Best to use the Park bathrooms before venturing out as bathrooms are scarce in this area. However, if really needed, you can use the bathroom in the New York  Society Library – 53 East 79th St just on the next block.

Also, along with several galleries on the upper east side, there are many small galleries throughout the city – don’t be bashful!


NYC – Holiday windows of Madison Avenue

It seems that every Christmas I get to walk down Madison Avenue. This year, I only walked one block – but what a block. Stores like Choe, Gucci and  Prada are but a few stores with interesting windows – they were not really holiday oriented (my opinion) but all featured the same accessory.




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Here are a few photos taken along the way

NYC – Fall in Central Park -Metropolitan Museum Area

Fall in Central Park

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The front of Metropolitan Museum

I was near the Metropolitan Museum (5th Ave/ 84th Street) when I got thinking that many people who visit the Museum may not know what is behind the building. So here are a few photographs from the park, I started from 5th Avenue and east 84th Street through the park ending at the other end of the museum at east 79th Street.


Usually peak fall foliage in Central Park occurs towards the beginning of November. There are many other Blogs that will give you information about the more well-known locations. They were taken November 2nd.

There is a playground at the corner of 5th Ave and e 84th street where these little creatures are at the entrance.

To the rear of the museum walk over the roadway and take a path to your left

You will  pass the Obelisk, nicknamed Cleopatra’s Needle. It is the oldest man-made object in Central Park, and the oldest outdoor monument in New York City.

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A little further down the path and you come to Turtle Pond -named in honor of the large number of turtles that reside there along with numerous species of birds, fish, frogs, and dragonflies.

Looking behind you (at the pond) The King Jagiello Monument  will be protecting you.


Then you can head out of the park at East 79th Street. (Bus stop just to your left)

NYC – Madison Avenue above East 82nd Street -the backdoor of the Museums



 Madison Avenue – above east 82nd Street


Some people walk from the Metropolitan Museum up to the Guggenheim Museum along 5th Avenue.  Unless you want to look into Central Park or going to the Guggenheim,  I don’t find this walk very interesting. I prefer walking up Madison Avenue. Here you will pass many high-end fashions displayed in shop windows. Also, some of the architecture is “old New York” and enjoyable to the eye.



Walking from east 86th Street all the way up to east 92nd Street you will have the opportunity to grab a coffee or lunch. There are several small places and remember you are in NYC, so the price may be a little higher than home so just go “with the flow“.










A reminder to go to the bathroom before leaving the museum or restaurant… public ones are few and far between in this area.

This article may be of interest

NYC – Winter Snow at the other park – Carl Shurz

At this writing, it is very  cold outside and we have snow on the ground. Many winter scenes of NYC show mostly midtown or the larger parks… here is a glimpse of a small park on the upper east side of Manhattan.

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East River and the Tr-Borough Bridge from Carl shurz Park

It was nice to have the lights on as it added to the enjoyment of a winter day in the park,

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Lastly, you know it is cold when you see the vapors rising from the chimneys.

 Enjoy your day!

NYC – A Christmas Card – My Neighborhood

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Christmas In The Heart
~ Anonymous
It is Christmas in the mansion,
Yule-log fires and silken frocks;
It is Christmas in the cottage,
Mother’s filling little socks.
It is Christmas in the flower shop,
In the busy, neighborhood;
But the dearest truest Christmas
Is the Christmas in the heart.
At this time of year, , I continue to enjoy my NYC neighborhood –   Yorkville.  As we celebrate Christmas and the New Year 2014, my wish for each of you is health, happiness and prosperity.
The above tree was created by Eric landgraf Florist.


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The Mansion Restaurant

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Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

nyc – Upper East Side – Unmarked Historic District

At the northwest corner of Lexington Avenue and 89th Street is a stretch of landmarked homes. It’s comprised of just seven Renaissance Revival–style houses completed in 1889.


There are no signs but it is called the Hardenbergh-Rhinelander Historic District. I imagine that the surrounding neighborhood had many of these types of buildings. ornate residences.

These 6 houses are what is left after extensive development in this area. An Upper east Side website states: “Clad in red brick, brownstone and red terra cotta, the six houses form a picturesque yet symmetrical composition featuring a variety of window entrance enframements.”

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I found out that the Rhinelander family has owned them for sixty years. You may know of the family as it is very prominent in owning Broadway Theaters.

You may have noted that I was one building shy in an earlier paragraph. . In addition to this set of 6 buildings along Lexington Avenue, the district includes one narrow townhouse at 121 E. 89th Street.

Henry Hardenbergh, who designed the homes, “also designed the Dakota, the original Waldorf-Astoria on 34th Street.” It is written that Andy Warhol also lived in one of these buildings.

NYC – Neighborhood Halloween

Growing up I always enjoyed the holidays. Halloween was always special because the neighborhood houses got decorated and we were able to go Trick-or-Treating.  Many people know New York City is best known for its Village Halloween Parade. It has crowds lining Sixth Avenue, thousands of marchers donning fantastically creative props and costumes.

But, you may be surprised to know, the city is really a lot of little neighborhoods. Many of these  areas enjoy the holiday in a more festive and traditional way. The following are pictures of two businesses in Yorkville that help keep the spirit of the holiday alive for our the local youngsters (and old-timers).

Eric Landgraf Florist


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The Mansion Restaurant

Maybe it is time for you to take a walk in your neighborhood…have fun!

NYC – Upper East Side near Central Park #1 St Nicolas Russian Church


Many visitors come to NYC never go beyond 72nd street and a few probably go up to around 86th street.  there is plenty to see and For those who venture above 86th street, there is much to see and enjoy.

St. Nicholas Russian Orthodox Cathedral

I have a habit of trying to look into churches. Many times the doors are locked but today, I noticed , the door  of this east 97th st church was ajar. Immediately, I knew I had entered an orthodox church – what a feeling! The church was empty except for a cleaning woman and a woman praying. There are no pews or seats.  The room is filled with candle holders (I imagine during services full of candle light) and religions items. Here’s some more information.

St. Nicholas Russian Orthodox Cathedral


This impressive Upper East Side Cathedral, built at the turn of the 19th century, remains the center of Russian Orthodoxy in the United States. Five onion domes distinguish the opulent, red-brick structure that was inspired by the great architectural edifices of Tsarist Russia.

The structure is a slice of old Moscow dropped onto 97th Street. If the congregation had no money when they started the project, the finished structure gives no hint of it. Exotic onion domes clustered above the red brick and limestone façade which is decorated in green, yellow and blue glazed tiles. Gilt bronze ribs stand out against the painted surfaces of the domes.

Inside is a blaze of traditional Russian decoration. Bright multicolored frescoes adorned the walls and ceilings. To cross the threshold is to leave New York and enter Russia.

Hint: Always ask if you can take flash or no-flash photographs before taking pictures. Also, if you get a lot of great shots then a small contribution to a candle offering is always a nice way to say thank you.

More places of interest (above 86th St.) next week -Reservoir