Monday, February 28, 2022

Monday's parting shot

Photo today on Second Avenue by Grant Shaffer ...

Grub street

Photos by Steven 

A delivery worker carrying for Grubhub tonight lost his load on Second Avenue at Ninth Street, which sucks for all involved.

Despite a few near-misses...
... the delivery worker was able to snag the bag... no idea about the state of the contents inside...

6 posts from February

A mini month in review... 

• A visit to CLLCTV.NYC (Feb. 22

• RIP Al Landess (Feb. 19

• The 1980s East Village as seen through the lens of photographer Peter Bennett (Feb. 18

• You may now open a business in the former NYC HQ of the Hells Angels Motorcycle Club (Feb. 11

• Where are they now? Catching up with Willie from Odessa (Feb. 9)

• I Am a Rent-Stabilized Tenant (Feb. 2)

RIP Nick Zedd

Nick Zedd, a longtime East Village resident who spearheaded the Cinema of Transgression film movement, died yesterday in Mexico City where he resided since 2011, according to his Instagram account

The artist and filmmaker, born James Harding, was 63. 

According to a recent GoFundMe campaign, he had been diagnosed with cirrhosis of the liver, hepatitis C and cancer. 

Zedd spent his career on the fringe, directing no-budget films including "They Eat Scum" (1979), "The Bogus Man (1980)" and "Geek Maggot Bingo” (1983), and editing The Underground Film Bulletin from 1984 to 1990. In 2004, Zedd started making a TV series with his then-girlfriend, Reverend Jen, called "The Adventures of Electra Elf." 

Per a 2015 feature in Filmmaker Magazine:
Back in 1985, Zedd coined the term the “Cinema of Transgression” to describe the campy movies full of shocking sex and violence that he and other artists like Lydia Lunch, Richard Kern, and Kembra Pfahler were making on the Lower East Side. They were scrappy movies shot on 16mm often with pornographic punchlines.
Among the social media tributes... Zedd is survived by his partner of 15 years, Monica Casanova, his son Zerak and step-daughter Amanita Funaro. 

You can read an EVG interview with Zedd from 2013 before a retrospective at the New Museum right here.

A cafe-coffee shop in the works for Houston and Allen

Photos by Stacie Joy

Renovations continue behind the plywood at 200 Allen St., that thin strip of a storefront on the SE corner of Houston...
Workers at the scene told EVG contributor Stacie Joy that a cafe-coffee shop was in the works for the space, though they didn't have the name of the business...
Eastanbul Gyro Kebab and Smyrna Bakery closed here last fallEmpire Gyro, with a 24/7 schedule, opened here in February 2019 ... with the conversion to Eastanbul (and Smyrna) in the summer of 2020. The space was previously Sugar Cafe for 10 years

And once upon a time! Economy Foam (and later, & Futon) anchored the corner from 1937 to 2003...

Doctor doctor, give me the news: MedRite Urgent Care opening on 14th and 3rd

MedRite Urgent Care is opening a facility on the SE corner of Third Avenue and 14th Street. (Thanks to Pinch and David Sippel for sending photos!

The walk-in clinic has more than a dozen locations around NYC and the metropolitan area.

And the new outpost is about 60 steps away from the CityMD location on 14th Street ... 
As for the new MedRite storefront, this space has been on the retail market since the Capital One® branch moved away in July 2016

And the corny headline inspiration source.

A look at the in-progress new home of Bleecker Street Bar — on Broadway

All has been quiet on the new Bleecker Street Bar front this past year or so... But!

The bar provided an update on Instagram (where the top pic is from) late last week: 
We have been quiet but we have been busy! We promised you the best Bleecker Street Bar 2.0 we could make and we are happy to say we are building! It's been an incredibly long and hard couple of years for so many people and we can't wait to welcome all our people back and raise a glass to resilience and community. 
As previously reported, the neighborhood bar's 30-year tenure on the corner of Bleecker and Crosby came to an end in August 2020. Per the owners at the time: "All of our efforts to negotiate a reasonable lease extension with our landlord have failed." 

However, they lined up a new space just around the corner at 648 Broadway between Bleecker and Bond. 

In the Instagram comments, management figured they'd be open by late summer/early fall.

K-Dogs and K-pop on St. Mark's Place

Oh K-Dog is opening a branch at 36 St. Mark's Place between Second Avenue and Third Avenue, as we noted last summer

This past week, new signage (h/t Steven!) arrived next to the shop that will sell Korean-style snacks such as stuffed hot dogs and egg toast ... for K-pop Albums and Goods. 

People have asked about it... a side business, perhaps? We'll see! There isn't any mention of it on the Oh K-Dog site or social media.

Oh K-Dog also has outposts on Ludlow Street and Seventh Avenue South, with several more planned for the city.

As for this storefront on St. Mark's Place... not much has had success here in recent years. Joe's Steam Rice Roll was the most recent tenant, quietly closing in March 2021Other concepts included Cheers Cut, the Taiwanese mini-chain of fried foods ... Friterie Belgian Fries ... Fasta ("Pasta Your Way") ... and the $1.50 branch of 2 Bros. Pizza.

Sunday, February 27, 2022

Sunday's parting shot

#StandWithUkraine at Big Bar on Seventh Street today.. thanks to Michael Quinn for the photo...

The Black History Bowl returns to the Lower East Side

Photos by Stacie Joy 

The second-annual Black History Bowl took place yesterday afternoon at the Baruch Playground on the Lower East Side...
Once again, the event featured residents, community groups and local elected officials commemorating Black History Month ... bringing together young adults and their parents. (There were also two games of flag football.)

Donations allowed for snacks, drinks and meals for 60 kids... with any leftovers going to the Loisaida CommUnity Fridge and Pantry at Trinity Church on Ninth Street and Avenue B. 

Here are a few photos via EVG contributor Stacie Joy...
The Black History Bowl was created by Ty Lemons — aka For the Love of the City, a neighborhood resident and coach, mentor and event planner.

Week In Grieview

Posts this last week included (with a photo outside McSorley's by @ArtieAthas) ...
• The #SupportUkraine Humanitarian Effort (Saturday
• Local Ukrainians react to the Russian invasion (Friday)
• Cleaning out and preparing to rebuild Essex Card Shop on Avenue A (Tuesday)
• Lady Wong brings the desserts of Southeast Asia to 9th Street (Thursday)
• A visit to June First Skincare (Wednesday)
• Meg is on the move (Saturday)
• Another step to make outdoor dining permanent (Thursday)
• Missing: the fruit vendor on 1st Avenue; the taco cart on 2nd Street (Friday)
• A visit to CLLCTV.NYC (Tuesday)
• Rowdy Rooster debuts on 1st Avenue (Wednesday)
• Reports of suspicious fires in Stuy Town (Wednesday)
• Tribute-filled façade of former Basquiat studio painted over (Tuesday)
• Ralph's returns on Avenue A (Thursday)
• Blick makes it signage official on 4th Avenue (Wednesday)
• Cutting down a sycamore tree on 9th Street (Thursday)
• Verameat has closed (Tuesday)
• Bistro Marylou opening at 41 St. Mark's Place (Friday)
• Joey Bats opening a shipping outpost on Houston Street (Tuesday)
• A Neighborhood Loading Zone for this block of 9th Street (Monday)
• So long to the Union Square Walgreens (Monday)
Follow EVG onInstagramorTwitterfor more frequent updates and pics.

About the new neon Lucy's signage at Lucy's

Text and photos by Stacie Joy

You may have noticed a new Lucy's sign hanging in the front window at Lucy's (aka Blanche's Lucy's Tavern), 135 Avenue A between St. Mark's Place and Ninth Street. 

Proprietor Ludwika "Lucy" Mickevicius' birthday is Feb. 10, and a friend bought her the sign as a gift. 

Lucy said that she doesn't usually celebrate her birthday as it is also the anniversary of her husband's death ... but this year she celebrated with this new sign...
BTW if you're on Instagram, you can follow Lucy's here.

Saturday, February 26, 2022

Saturday's parting shot

Today outside Veselka on Second Avenue and Ninth Street... photo by Derek Berg...

The #SupportUkraine Humanitarian Effort

As the Russian invasion of Ukraine enters its third day, we've heard from readers asking what they can do to help show their support.

Andrij V. Dobriansky, director of communications and media at the Ukrainian Congress Committee of America, told us that they are working with UN-registered NGOs.

"We are using these donations to get supplies into Ukraine that can be more easily transported: bandages, diapers, emergency pharmaceutical packs — all items in need for refugees making a long journey," he said.

Meanwhile, yesterday, a group of local elected officials, clergy and community leaders gathered at the Ukrainian National Home on Second Avenue between St. Mark's Place and Ninth Street to stand in solidarity with Ukrainian New Yorkers. Outside Veselka on Second Avenue and Ninth Street, co-owner Jason Birchard talked with reporters.

"My grandfather started this. He was an immigrant from Ukraine escaping Russian aggression in the 1940s," Birchard told CBS News. "They're frightened, they're scared, there's a state of shock. People don't know what to do. It's not only a war against Ukraine. It's a war against the free world."
Above photos from yesterday by Stacie Joy
Top photo by Steven

Meg is on the move

Photos by Stacie Joy

Meg, the locally made, independent clothing line, is moving its flagship NYC location... from its longtime home on Ninth Street to 262 Mott St. just below Houston. 

As we're told, the new outpost will be open on Friday. However, this doesn't mean an empty storefront now at 312 E. Ninth St. between First Avenue and Second Avenue. This space will become a "Meg Archive" for used Meg clothes to be resold and traded. 

Meanwhile, EVG contributor Stacie Joy reports there are several pieces left at the shop... everything is under $25. Gloves are $2/pair, sweats for S10, dresses, jumpsuits, tops, etc., $25.
Store hours: 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Megan Kinney opened her first shop in the East Village in 1994.

Friday, February 25, 2022

Friday's parting shot

Late-afternoon Midtown view from the EV...

By the Way...


Clovis, a local band we like, released this video for "Other Way Out" on Feb. 18. 

And you can catch Clovis live with Computerwife and PlayShoes on Tuesday night at Nublu, 151 Avenue C. Find details here.

Mid-afternoon Walgreens signage removal shots

As seen today on the 13th Street/Fourth Avenue side of the now-closed Walgreens... thanks to Jeanne Krier for the pics...

'The feeling is shock'

Photo of St. George Ukrainian Catholic Church on 7th Street by N&Lon7th 

As The New York Times points out, NYC is home to more than 150,000 Ukrainians, the largest such community in the country... the East Village and Brighton Beach are among the neighborhoods with large populations of Ukrainian-Americans. Here are some local headlines from the past 24 hours following the Russian invasion of Ukraine yesterday...

• Protesters rally for Ukraine on UES, at East Village church; "Please, help our families" (CBS 2)
St. George Ukrainian Catholic Church in the East Village, parishioners gathered to pray for peace. 

Andrij Dobriansky is the church cantor and spokesman for the Ukrainian Congress Committee of America. 
"The feeling is shock. The feeling is the punch to the stomach," Dobriansky said. "This entire neighborhood was built on the back of refugees, people who know what destruction is, so this is what we've been fearing for the longest time." 
 • "A Time of Worries": New York City's Ukrainians are anxious and afraid (The New York Times

• Ukrainians take to the streets in Manhattan (The New York Times

• "Stop Putin": Demonstrators at Manhattan rallies voice loud support for Ukraine (NBC 4)

• "They are prepared to fight" — NYC's Ukrainian community watches family and friends brace for invasion (Gothamist

 • "It breaks my heart": East Village’s Little Ukraine prays for peace (amNY/The Villager

• Ukrainian Americans express anger, sadness as Russia invades (USA Today, includes quote from Veselka owner Tom Birchard) 

• Support Ukrainian-owned businesses by dining at these NYC restaurants (Thrillist

Missing in the East Village: the fruit vendor on 1st Avenue; the taco cart on 2nd Street

Reader queries have arrived this week... asking about some now-missing regulars around the neighborhood. 

For starters, the fruit vendor has not been at his usual post on the SE corner of First Avenue and Sixth Street for several days. (Top photo.) 

The vendor had been toughing it out during the winter months, but now everything is gone. (H/T Goggla!)

There was some speculation — over the clickety-clack of typewriters in the EVG newsroom — that perhaps the Citi Bike docking station prompted the departure and, perhaps, relocation. While the dock isn't new, its arrival meant the vendor needed to find parking elsewhere for his van with supplies to keep the stand stocked with fruit and vegetables.

Meanwhile, on the NW corner of Second Street at Avenue A...
... the whereabouts of the Tacos Cholula cart is unknown. One grieving regular puts the absence now at a few weeks. We have our best people looking into this.

Bistro Marylou opening at 41 St. Mark's Place

In recent weeks, we've seen activity inside the restaurant space at 41 St. Mark's Place just east of Second Avenue. (Thanks to John Holmstrom for the top pic from Feb. 17.

And yesterday, opening-soon signage for the new establishment went up... a French bistro called Marylou... (thanks to Steven for this shot)...
The sign promises cocktails, small plates, brunch and good vibes. 

We don't know much else about the new venture at the moment. (Bistro Marylou has some teaser posts on Instagram.) 

The previous tenant, Paper Daisy, debuted in March 2019. The cafe-cocktail bar, from the owners behind East Village establishments Boulton & Watt, Drexler's and Mister Paradise, closed at the start of the PAUSE in March 2020 and never reopened. The storied Cafe Orlin closed here in October 2017, wrapping up a 36-year run on St. Mark's Place.

Flower space for rent outside Sunny & Annie's

Photos by Stacie Joy

The flower vendor that arrived at Sunny & Annie's on the NW corner of Avenue B and Sixth Street in November has closed...

... and the space is now available for someone else who may want to sell flowers here...
No word about the rent. You can ask when picking up a P.H.O. Real!

Thursday, February 24, 2022

Thursday's parting shot

Photo today by Steven...

So long to this sycamore tree on 9th Street

Photos by Steven 

Workers today cut down this sycamore tree on the north side of Ninth Street between First Avenue and Second. 

It was not immediately clear what prompted this removal...
... a worker pointed out a deteriorating and spongy area of the stump...
EVG reader Terry Howell shared this photo...
He writes: 
This lovely sycamore tree and I coexisted peacefully on this block for over 47 years. I don't remember it ever being small. I have no clue why the city choose to murder it today. They will probably say "it's too old," unsafe, etc., etc., etc. My feeling is that Amazon probably needs its own loading space, another restaurant shed needs to be built, a branch might injure a CAR! or it's just inconveniently in the way. I, being old like the sycamore, hope I live long enough to see its spindly replacement sapling, which the city will plant and then ignore. 
Yesterday, city workers also removed a tree on 10th Street just west of First Avenue...
Updated 12:30

The remains of the sycamore after the workers left...