On Friday, August 2, at 7 p.m., a free concert will take place at the St. George Ballpark, home of the Staten Island Yankees, featuring an array of Beatles cover bands. A fun thing to do on a midsummer Friday evening at a beautiful venue. If you can’t make it, there is also a summer festival is planned for the esplanade closer to the water on the next day, Saturday, from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m.
This photo is from Steve of the lap swimmers group at Lyons Pool. The lengthwise laps have been reinstated after a year of widthwise lanes. If you are in the St. George or Tompkinsville area and are not familiar with this beautiful little known and underutilized resource, do yourself a favor and check out this pool, next to the Tompkinsville train station. There is still a full month of operation so get moving!
Tomorrow, Saturday, that elusive whale makes an appearance at Fort Wadsworth, courtesy of Staten Island OutLoud, an organizer of unique literary events. So if you are unfamiliar with the beautiful fort, or with the wonderful novel by Herman Melville, come out on this midsummer weekend. A message form Beth Gorrie. She is the animator of OutLOUD and is a Staten Island local treasure.
Staten Island OutLOUD invites you to our annual Moby Dick celebration this Sat July 27, 6:30pm at Fort Wadsworth. Free. Music by SI Philharmonic.
BRING A LAWNCHAIR!
Plenty of free parking in the Visitors Center lot, then walk about 50 ft to the spectacular Harbor Overlook. Bring friends, bring family. Bring the kids! Good for all ages.
DON’T FORGET TO BRING A LAWNCHAIR!
What is one urban renewal initiative that could have an enormous impact on the aesthetic appearance of the North Shore? Bury those unsightly telephone and utility poles. I mean UNSIGHTLY in all caps.. unsightly beyond any reasonable expectation. Unsightly and UNSEEN, like the movie The Monster That Devoured Cleveland, which was eternally playing in the town that Dobie Gillis lived in but was never seen. What I mean is, humans have the ability to ignore the things that they don’t want to see, and it is amazing to hear the responses I get when I mention telephone poles to people around here. “What telephone poles?” is the usual response. WHAT TELEPHONE POLES???????!!!!! Are you kidding me??? Here is the charming funky block of Wall Street between St. Marks Place and Stuyvesant Place, first with its telephone poles in all their chaotic glory.
Now, how Wall Street looks with all those mad poles photoshopped away. Umm, maybe you can see a difference.
The burial of the telephone lines have their advantages and disadvantages in terms of maintenance and cost. Can’t we begin to have a serious discussion about getting rid of these hideous blights on our streetscapes?
There are places along the Kills separating Staten Island from New Jersey where industrial sites come right up to the water. They are certainly not pretty places, but they do keep up the traditional economic activity that animates this area. Then there are other places where the lush green vegetation of these low flung marshlands have reclaimed land, or have remained fairly natural through all these years of development, at Fresh Kills and in green patches elsewhere. These areas show the great potential for a rebirth of this natural estuary as parkland and they remind us how Staten Island’s geographical isolation in New York (as opposed to the centrality of the New Jersey areas on the opposite shore) has spared us from a more extremely industrial fate. And then there are the maritime dumps – places where old boats, industrial equipment, machinery and plain old trash have accumulated washed up, driven over and trucked in, to create an insult to the concept of shoreline. Here at the far end of South Avenue is just such a spot, a boat graveyard and trash heap that despoils the waters of the Arthur Kill just across from the southern tip of the mysterious green wilderness of Pralls Island. This is a fragile ecosystem that needs far more care, exemplified by the bird sanctuary on Pralls Island, a place where egrets and herons thrive. It was seriously harmed by an oil spill in 1990 when 700 birds died. Hopefully the opening of the Fresh Kills shoreline as parkland during the next few years will spur interest in this shore and will lead to a clean up of these sites.
Uh, it’s on the other side of the Bayonne Bridge. Simple, but sometimes New Yorkers can be so myopic about that vast mass of industrialization on the western edges of the harbor. Ask a typical New Yorker what is the name of this or that town visible along that shoreline, and they will usually shrug and say ‘It’s New Jersey.” Even the skyscrapers of Jersey City, the state’s second largest city, will leave many New Yorkers perplexed. The fact is that there are a dozen different townships, counties and other municipal entities over there, all trying to deal with the same environmental, economic and social problems that we deal with here, especially on Staten Island just across the Kills. It would make a lot of sense to work with them on some of these problems. Yes, that’s Bayonne over there, but do you also know that the Hudson-Bergen Light Rail has its terminus just a mile or so away from this Bridge? And has anyone calculated the economic benefits that could be gotten if they were to extend that light rail system to Staten Island? I know the Port Authority of NY and NJ has not…. I asked them that question at the public meeting about the Bayonne Bridge roadway project and they deftly avoided answering. “We looked at some studies that were made a few years ago for a different project,” was the non-answer. So shouldn’t they be working on this? “We are waiting for Staten Island to get back to us on their intentions, what they are willing to invest in terms of infrastructure.” I’m paraphrasing, but I doubt that anyone will be able to pin them down anymore than that.
Residents of places like Brooklyn Heights and the West Village know film crews as that plague of self important invaders who swoop down on a neighborhood and disrupt parking and access for days or weeks without benefiting the community much at all. But for a fringe community on the tattered fringe of the city, the arrival of these exotic outsiders can be a pleasant change. Beryl Thurman of the North Shore Waterfront Conservancy shared this letter she sent thanking Boardwalk Empire for their use of Port Richmond locations.
People were walking and driving by all day and night taking pictures of the Ford Model T cars that lined the streets and wondering how something that was made back in 1924 is still working in 2013 when nothing made today is actually made to last beyond 3 years.