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Here’s How Joe’s Pub Does a Block Party

On the first day of the summer solstice, the air thrummed with the rhythmic sensations of drumbeats and fast-paced guitar solos, lively dancing and good vibes during the Joe’s Pub Block Party at Astor Place.

Following the 2016 election, Joe’s Pub decided to pay greater homage to immigrant voices in their annual bash, which is part of the citywide Make Music New York program. This year, they touted a pretty incredible lineup of immigrants and performers of color, featuring the mambo and North African beats of the Yemen Blues Duo and the classically-trained voice of Treya Lam, among others.

Play our video to see the block party in full swing.

Video by Nicole Sedgh.

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See Saul Leiter’s Striking East Village Nudes

(Photos: Saul Leiter Foundation, courtesy Howard Greenberg Gallery, New York)

As the son of a distinguished rabbi and Talmudic scholar, Saul Leiter could have been expected to follow a similar path. But instead, he chose to pursue a more unorthodox life in the creative arts and showcased a rich side of New York through decades of photographs.

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Summer Is (Officially) Here and It’s Time to Party

This Thursday marks the the summer solstice (aka the longest day of the year), and we are so ready to celebrate. Kick off summer in the city with these eight festive events.

Joe’s Pub Block Party – Voices of Immigrant America – Thursday, June 21, 1:00-7:00 p.m.

(Photo: Joe’s Pub)

Joe’s Pub Block Party returns to Astor Place this Thursday afternoon. It touts a pretty incredible lineup of immigrants and performers of color, featuring the mambo and North African beats of the Yemen Blues Duo and the classically-trained voice of Treya Lam, among others.  This event is part of Make Music New York, which “energizes the shared social spaces that make NYC a cultural capital” through city-wide music festivals on the summer solstice, per their website. More details on this year’s block party here.

Location: Astor Place
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Throwback Subway Trains Are Back For Some Fun in the Sun

(Photos: Tara Yarlagadda)

(Photos: Tara Yarlagadda)

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This past weekend, the New York Transit Museum offered up several vintage subway trains at the Brighton Beach B/Q platforms for nostalgic New Yorkers. The sun glinted off the coppery façade of the BMT Centennial (1915-2015), which resembled something like a child’s dream toy train.

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Photos + Video: The Coney Island Mermaid Parade Was the Place to Sea and Be Seen

Throngs of New Yorkers festooned in sparkly neon fishnets, purple glitter and dolphin-shaped crowns descended on Coney Island this past Saturday for the 36th Annual Coney Island Mermaid Parade. Beachgoers were treated to frolicking sharks atop floats and merrymakers in various stages of undress (and suitably fishy gowns), along with notable figures like Mermaid Queen Amanda Palmer and King Neptune Neil Gaiman. Love, sweat, sea spray and mermaid pride mingled in the air above the jubilant crowd.

Watch our video, above, to see all the action and hear from the parade’s organizers. Then click through our slideshow, below, for more.

Video by Erica Carnevalli

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Will Your Lamb Gyro Survive NYC’s New Styrofoam Ban?

The city’s sytrofoam ban could affect food truck vendors like this one. (Photo: Tara Yarlagadda)

Along with pillowy heaps of steaming rice, hot sauce and shredded meat, Styrofoam containers are practically ubiquitous among the city’s halal food carts. The foam trays contribute to the food trucks’ tantalizingly cheap offerings. But your favorite corner gyro or chicken biryani could soon leave you scrambling for extra change.

Last week, New York State Supreme Court judge Margaret A. Chan allowed a ban on single-use Expanded Polystyrene (EPS) foam products and loose fill packaging (aka Styrofoam cups, containers and packing peanuts) to move forward. The ruling effectively ended a three-year legal battle between the city’s Department of Sanitation and the Restaurant Action Alliance, which opposed the new law.

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‘He’s One of the Good Guys’: Lower East Siders Recall Filming With Anthony Bourdain

Bourdain and Danny Fields (Photo via @anthonybourdain on Instagram)

Back in April, Anthony Bourdain visited some of his old stomping grounds (and new ones) in the East Village and Lower East Side for an episode of Parts Unknown, chatting with numerous local characters along the way. It’s unclear what will happen with this and other episodes Bourdain was filming prior to his unexpected death last week, so we spoke with some of the featured artists and business owners about their experiences with a reporter and raconteur who was known for keeping it real.

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Astor Place’s Insta-Famous Rhino Sculpture Trots Off

The empty Astor Place, where ‘The Last Three’ once stood. (Photo: Tara Yarlagadda)

“Oh no, Jerry!” The 93-year-old woman in Washington Square Park called out to her husband, who was similarly distraught. I had just informed the passing couple that The Last Three—an installation in nearby Astor Place featuring three bronze, life-sized rhinos piled topsy-turvy on top of each other—was about to be taken down. The anguish was evident on their faces—and mine.

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Classic Japanese Studio Ghibli Films Like Spirited Away Return to the Big Screen

A rendering of the characters from the Studio Ghibli Film “My Neighbor Totoro.” (Image Credit: City Cinemas)

Fans of beloved Japanese storyteller Hayao Miyazaki, who produced some of the world’s most iconic animated films, will be delighted to see his quintessential works and others from the Japanese company Studio Ghibli returning to the Village East Cinema this summer. During the height of Miyazaki’s tenure at Studio Ghibli, the filmmaker was lauded for his visually stunning movies featuring gutsy female heroines that struck at the wide range of the human experience, spanning whimsical family tales in My Neighbor Totoro to grim government spies and giant robots in Castle in the Sky.

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Meet the Artist Behind the Dreamy New Light Installation in Prospect Park

HEDERA (Grimanesa Amorós Studio)

When I met Grimanesa Amorós on a wet spring day, she was dressed in a cozy jacket, red scarf and thick galoshes perfect for sloshing around in the mud. The artist had come prepared.

Amorós greeted me warmly, like an old friend, as she gave me a preview of HEDERA, the latest in a long line of other-worldly light installations that have been displayed across the world from the Middle East to Latin America.

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The Brooding Long Goodbye Brings the Art of Brooklyn Film Festival to a Close

The trailer for Long Goodbye opens with a straight shot of a woman with shoulder-length hair and a jean jacket walking briskly away from the camera through the Morgan Ave subway station. We can’t see her face. One of the next scenes lingers on two friends chatting on a couch, with one of the guys uttering some language that feels rather stalker-y: “I drive around and clear my head and find myself parked outside of her place. I’m not going to do anything…I don’t know. Maybe she wants me to?”

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