Sunday, March 31, 2024

Sunday's parting shot

The early afternoon sky as seen today from Fourth Street between Avenue A and Avenue B...

6 posts from March

A mini month in review (with a photo from 7th Street by Derek Berg) ...

• Greenpoint hit Taqueria Ramírez is opening an East Village outpost (March 28

• 1st sign this spring of the wisteria on Stuyvesant Street (and that townhouse is for sale!) (March 26)

• Bella McFadden bringing her iGirl brand to the East Village (March 21

• 2 East Village residents 'shaken and scared' after assault inside their building (March 18

• The NYPL's archive of the legendary East Village Eye now available to the public (March 12

• Veselka looks to ease back into a 24/7 schedule starting with weekends first (March 4)

Happy Easter!

It's a nice day today to clean the house and discard the Christmas wreath... photo from 7th and B today by Robert Miner.

Updated 7 p.m.

And someone discarded two trees on Seventh Street alongside Tompkins Square Park (thanks to Steven for the photo) ...

Week in Grieview

Posts this past week included (with a photo from 3rd between B and C)... 

• NYPD: Suspect arrested in connection with the 2 recent shootings in Tompkins Square Park (Tuesday)

• Greenpoint hit Taqueria Ramírez is opening an East Village outpost (Thursday

• 1st sign this spring of the wisteria on Stuyvesant Street (and that townhouse is for sale!) (Tuesday) ... Walking on Stuyvesant Street in the rain (Sunday)

• Marking the 113th anniversary of the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire (Monday

• This non-fiction reading series in the East Village turns 10 on Monday (Wednesday

• A look inside Trader Joe's Pronto, now open on 14th Street in Union Square (Wednesday

• A journey into the COZMOS on 10th Street (Friday

• Good Friday on Avenue B (Saturday

• Remembering Tim Lomas (Saturday

• Checking in on the former mucky tree well on Avenue A (Tuesday

• 'Orson’s Shadow' at Theater for the New City (Wednesday

• Tribes of Morocco relocates to a larger storefront on 9th Street (Tuesday

• Coming soon to the East Village: No More Cafe, 'a haven for alcohol-free celebration' (Monday)

• Openings: The Commodore on Avenue C (Friday) ... Yummy Hive on 2nd Avenue (Monday

• Kolkata Chai Co. closed for renovations until April 1 on 3rd Street (Monday

• Spa treatment (Thursday)

• About a sustainable Salon No. 17 (Wednesday

• Signage alert: Utshob Restaurant on 1st Avenue (Thursday

• Art Gotham is the new tenant for the landmarked 4 St. Mark's Place (Monday

... annnnnnnnnnnnnd! (Background!)
... and a reader shares the tiniest tree that we may have ever seen discarded... on 14th Street this past week ...
Follow EVG on Instagram or X for more frequent updates and pics.

Sunday's opening shot

The magnolia tree in the New York City Marble Cemetery on Second Street between First Avenue and Second Avenue is close to full bloom...

Saturday, March 30, 2024

Saturday's parting shot

Photo by Stacie Joy 

A happy second birthday to Remedios (center in rainbow hat) celebrating today in Tompkins Square Park! 


To the Parks Department, local elected officials, et al. Please do something to bring back portable toilets to Tompkins. Gone since Jan. 8.

Good Friday on Avenue B

Photos by Stacie Joy 

Once again on this Good Friday (yesterday!), parishioners from St. Brigid-St. Emeric on Avenue B took part in a Stations of the Cross processional that started outside the church on the SE corner of Eighth Street ...
The solemn walking pilgrimage — symbolizing the path Jesus walked to Mount Calvary — continued to 12th Street... east to Avenue C... south to Seventh Street. 

This year's journey to the cross seemed a little more intense. (For instance, one of the Roman guards had a 6-foot-long bullwhip.)
... and eventually back to the church...
Sunday services are at 10 a.m. in English and noon in Spanish.

Remembering Tim Lomas

Photo by Stacie Joy 

There's a small memorial on Avenue B near Fourth Street and Fifth Street where East Village resident Tim Lomas lived for over 40 years.

Lomas, an artist, musician, teacher and photographer, died in February 2023. Read more about his life here

Kent Wang and Tim's many friends (aka The Irrational Lovelies) were responsible for the sign... and they vow to maintain it. TY EiLeen Doster.


An urban etiquette note as seen on Third Street between Avenue A and Avenue B... 

Stop shitting in our garden. 
We are tired of picking up your shit. 
Stop being a criminal. 

Anyway, enjoy your Easter holiday weekend (if you celebrate)! 

Thanks to Mark White for the photo!

Saturday's opening shot

Sunrise from Tompkins Square Park ...

Friday, March 29, 2024

At 'Seafoam' level


Austin, Texas-based dream-pop quartet Blushing has released a single (and video!) ahead of a new album due on May 3. 

The track here is for "Seafoam"

And you can see them live at Baby's All Right in Williamsburg on June 20.

EVG Etc.: Congestion pricing plan approved for below 60th Street; million-dollar condos unveiled at the former Streit's Matzo Factory

Spring rain last evening on Third Avenue at St. Mark's Place 

• Congestion pricing gets final approval: The MTA board gave the green light to how much drivers will have to pay as soon as June as part of the first-in-the-nation congestion pricing program that will toll vehicles going south of 60th Street (The City ... Streetsblog ... West Side Rag

• Several women, including on downtown streets, say they have been sucker-punched on sidewalks ... in attacks that have gone viral on social media (Gothamist ... The Cut... NBC News ... The Post

• Nuyorican Poets Cafe on Third Street breaks ground on $24.1 million renovation project (CBS 2 ... previously on EVG

• The million-dollar penthouses at the former Streit's Matzo Factory on Rivington (6sqft ... previously on EVG

• History of the Henry Street Settlement (Daily News via aol)

• A look at the Rent Guidelines Board (The City

• On April 12, The Cooper Union School of Art presents a free screening of the documentary "Looking at Pictures on a Screen: Thomas Nozkowski," which enters the homes of Nozkowski’s friends, family members, collectors, and critical champions to explore his life and work. Nozkowski, the abstract painter who died in 2019), graduated from The Cooper Union (Official site

• Starting on April 13, the film craft of cinematographer Frederick Elmes, including "Blue Velvet," "Wild at Heart," "River's Edge" and "Night on Earth" (Metrograph

• I want to party with you, cowboy: "Stripes" plays Monday evening at City Cinemas by Angelika (Official site

• And from noon to 3 p.m. today at St. Mark's Church-in-the-Bowery on 10th Street and Second Avenue, "Good Friday Blues," a St. Mark's musical tradition directed by Jeannine Otis and featuring guest preachers the Rev. Dr. LaKeesha Walrond, Nell Gibson, and the Rev. Matthew Hey (Official site)

A journey into the COZMOS on 10th Street

Photos and interview by Stacie Joy 

Since debuting last August, COZMOS has hosted an array of eclectic events from its retail storefront space at 280 E. 10th St. just west of Avenue A... starting with a conversation with longtime East Village photographer-artist Steven Hirsch.

Aside from more traditional art exhibits (such as the current showing of East Village photographer Daniel Root's "The Bars We've Lost series), there have been sessions on the art of dream interpretation and a musical event with improvisational dance and an oboe recital.

The retail side of the business is just as eclectic, with a particular emphasis on perfume and scented products. 

I recently met with co-owners Anton Relin (left below) and Vlad Makarkin to learn more about COZMOS.
Anton: Vlad and I met at college. I'm originally from Florida, and he is from Siberia. We connected in a class about Chekhov and ended up having a variety of projects, including bringing Russian opposition members to Philadelphia. 

We came up with the name because we wanted to capture the hopefulness of the moon landing — a moment when everyone came together and was hopeful for the future of humanity. The space age impacted me because I grew up just a few hours outside Cape Canaveral and would stand outside and see every rocket launch there. 

The COZMOS is also the universe, and there is so much that we want to encapsulate. I'd like for us to be hopeful for the future again. Perhaps it's a bit naive, but I think that we can regain hope if we enjoy more moments together in person.

For me, this space is my personal vendetta against the digital world we live in — for the brands in the space, I want to build an alternative to marketing online. Through that, I want to sponsor the arts we have in the neighborhood. 

I've lived in the East Village for a short while now and can say that I love this neighborhood. Like so many other neighborhoods in NYC, we are losing, piece by piece, what makes it special. Lucy's was a big piece of what made the neighborhood special. Ludwika represents the fabric of the immigrant community of the LES, a stalwart immigrant business owner who has contributed to the culture and nature of the neighborhood for over 40 years. 

We celebrated the opening of one of our last exhibits, "Connected COZMOS," at Lucy's. Now, during our current exhibit, we eulogize it and the other bars our neighborhood has lost

As the cultural landscape gets erased, we lose what makes neighborhoods special, but perhaps, with a little trying, we can preserve and even grow what we have left. 

Do we want to expand? I want the model to expand — in my perfect world, there would be at least one space in every neighborhood that works to preserve that neighborhood's history and culture. And then, perhaps we can help save what makes every community unique.
Vlad: My aspirations and dreams for COZMOS are very similar to Anton's. 

Anton and I have been friends for almost 10 years, and last summer, we finally launched COZMOS together. Previously, we spent a lot of time working with digital companies, and we both got scared by the trends we were observing. 

Personally, I've never been a fan of digital. I never really used social media. I got my first-ever smartphone in college. I went on a scholarship to spend my last two years of high school at an alternative boarding school in the middle of a Canadian forest, with no phones allowed — and those were some of the best years of my life.

With increasingly more resources going towards digital, I hope there is still room and desire to explore the real world. This is what COZMOS is for me — a place to explore real life, an anti-metaverse, the universe. We make this possible by helping companies tell their stories in real life inside our space, and these companies provide us with resources to run events that celebrate real life. 

As for my relationship with the East Village, COZMOS is the primary reason I moved here. Before, Anton and I spent a lot of time discussing the best place for COZMOS, and while Anton was always rooting for the EV, I was initially hesitant. 

But the moment I set foot inside Tompkins Square Park, I knew COZMOS had to start here — the people and energy felt very fitting for what we ventured to build. We were lucky enough to find a small storefront for rent right by the park at the corner of 10th and Avenue A. 

Living and running COZMOS in the East Village has exceeded my expectations. We've met many wonderful people who just walked into our store and became part of COZMOS through the artistic projects we put together in our space. Outside COZMOS, I have experienced, seen, and felt so much just by walking around the neighborhood. 
COZMOS is open 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday. Check out their future events here. (The Daniel Root photography is up through Sunday.) Use this link to follow them on Instagram.

Openings: The Commodore on Avenue C

Photos from March 10 by Stacie Joy 

The Commodore made its EV debut Wednesday evening at 14 Avenue C at Second Street...
This is the sibling (twin?) to The Commodore, the popular retro spot in Williamsburg that serves fried chicken and other Southern-fried menu items. 

This also marks the first Manhattan venture for owners Taylor Dow and Chris Young, whose establishments include The Drift Inn in Greenpoint. 

You can find the Commodore menu here. The Commodore is open daily Monday-Wednesday from 4 p.m. to 2 a.m., with a 4 a.m. close Thursday-Saturday. There's brunch on Saturday and Sunday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. The kitchen closes at midnight every day. 

Previously on EV Grieve

The Avenue Cafe is closing tomorrow on St. Mark's Place

Tomorrow (March 30) is the last day in service for The Avenue Cafe at 102 St. Mark's Place between Avenue A and First Avenue.

Per an Instagram message: "Though the time was short, the experience and support will last a lifetime. It’s been real NYC!"

The post also mentioned some upcoming "sweet" news about the space (which we heard is a new vendor taking over the storefront).

The independent/minority-owned shop, which opened in October and offers a variety of coffee drinks and housemade pastries, recently reduced its hours to weekends only.

We heard from a few bummed-out EVG readers who were fans of The Avenue. 

This marked the first storefront for the owners after two-plus years inside the Jamaica Market food hall in Queens.

The previous tenant at No. 102 was another short-lived cafe concept — Compilation Coffee.

Thursday, March 28, 2024

Thursday's parting shot

Photo by Stacie Joy 

It's full-on Easter time with Christy and Charles at Exit9, 51 Avenue A...


For anyone keeping tabs on how many different Key Food aisles this Scotch® Magic™ Tape display has been on... we've spotted it by the cereal, chips and detergent.

Greenpoint hit Taqueria Ramírez is opening an East Village outpost

Taqueria Ramírez, the popular spot in Greenpoint that has earned "NYC's best tacos" accolades, is opening an outpost in the East Village. 

Owners and life partners Tania Apolinar and Giovanni Cervantes teased the arrival, slated for the summer, on Instagram yesterday (see above).

We can confirm that Carnitas Ramírez will be taking over the former Café Cortadito space at 210 E. Third St. just east of Avenue B. (Café Cortadito owners Ricardo Arias and Patricia Valencia went on to open Cantina Cubana at 17 Avenue B. Read more about that here.) 

The Mexico City-style taqueria debuted in Greenpoint in September 2021 ... and later landed at No. 49 in Pete Wells' top-100 NYC restaurants for the Times.

Taqueria Ramírez is the latest Brooklyn-based establishment to cross the river in the East Village... following The Commodore (which opened last evening)... Sauced and, eventually, Win Son Bakery

Spa treatment

The demoliton has recently picked up on the NW corner of First Avenue at Second Street... where workers are gutting the former Serenity Spa on the second level...
As we reported earlier last week, a 7-floor residential building with ground-floor retail is now slated for 33-37 First Ave., the vacant three-building assemblage between Second Street and Third Street. 

Developers filed the permits with the city this past Friday. According to the paperwork, the proposed building — using the address 88 E. Second St. — will be 19,278 square feet, with 2,994 square feet designated for commercial space. Plans call for 22 residential units (likely rentals, given the square footage). 

The filings list Manny Ashourzadeh of Romah Management Corp. as the owner (they also have a 13-floor building in the works on Fifth Street and Avenue D). Queens-based Gerry Caliendo is named as the architect of record.

Demolition permits were filed last summer.

Signage alert: Utshob Restaurant on 1st Avenue

We have a signage upgrade at 130 First Ave. near St. Mark's Place, where Utshob Restaurant is in the works (a few weeks back we just had some window signage). 

Once open, the establishment will be serving Bangladeshi, Indian and Pakistani food — and more! 

Right next door, the quick-serve Pakistani spot Kolachi opened in the fall ... serving paratha rolls (and fries). 

The northern storefront at 130 First Ave. was most recently The Wild Son.

Wednesday, March 27, 2024

About a sustainable Salon No. 17

East Village retail concept Lydia Rodrigues Collection's (LRC) biannual event continues through Sunday at Salon No. 17.

For this show, independent sustainability designer Margaret Burton teamed up with Bronx artist and rapper F1RST T1ME to release a 12-shirt capsule collection. The show helps "play a part in reducing waste within the fashion industry and to display unity within our communities through what we wear."

Hours and times: Wednesday through Sunday from 3-7 p.m. (or by appointment).

Salon No. 17 is located on the third floor (no. 306) of the Ukrainian National Home, 140-142 Second Ave. between St. Mark's Place and Ninth Street.  

You can see highlights from previous LRC Salons here.

This non-fiction reading series in the East Village turns 10 on Monday

Image via @missmanhattanny 

On Monday (April 1!), the Miss Manhattan Non-Fiction Reading Series turns 10.

Author-photographer Elyssa Maxx Goodman hosts and curates the monthly series at Niagara on the SE corner of Avenue A and Seventh Street.

Here, Goodman, author of Glitter and Concrete: A Cultural History of Drag in New York City, talks more about one of the few non-fiction-only readings in NYC... 

Why did you decide on non-fiction when launching the series? 

Non-fiction is just the genre I know best. I enjoy fiction and poetry, of course, but my heart is always with non-fiction. I also realized at other series I had been to around the city that there would be something like one non-fiction reader every third time or something like that, and I wanted to create more space in New York for work in the genre. 

At Miss Manhattan, I like to have all styles of non-fiction, too — memoir, essay, storytelling, humor, journalism, you name it, as many types of truth-telling as possible. 

What were your initial goals with the series? 

Since non-fiction is the kind of writing I do, I wanted space for it, and I also wanted to meet people working in it. I was very early in my freelancing career, maybe three years in, and I wanted to be able to engage with writers I might not have otherwise known. 

It was important to me, too, to create a place where good writing is just good writing, so I would have both emerging and established writers — you didn’t need to have a book out to read here, you just had to have great work. 

Lastly, I wanted an event that felt accessible, where the spirit matched my own — I’m a bubbly, sassy, outgoing person, and I think literature should be fun, a place to take the work seriously but not ourselves. I think it’s worked so far.

Did you ever envision this would be running for 10 years? 

I’m honestly always just so consumed with booking the event from month to month that it definitely crept up on me and has been creeping up on me for the last 10 years! 

As much fun as it always is to meet people, I just want to have a good show now. I want the readers to have fun, I want the audience to enjoy themselves, and I want to enjoy myself, too! If none of those things were happening I wouldn’t have wanted to continue. It’s always been a labor of love. 

What has made the back room of Niagara a good home for the readings? 

I love this space at Niagara because its East Village art and punk roots run deep. In the 1980s, it was A7, famously the site of New York’s hardcore scene — there’s a plaque in the back room detailing all the bands that played there; after that, it was King Tut’s Wah Wah Hut, a site of experimental theatre. 

We get real cozy and the DIY energy is real. That I get to do my reading in a place like that is such a gift, not to mention the Yoshitomo Nara drawings on the walls of the bar. The staff has been so supportive throughout the years, and I’m grateful the reading continues to have a home there. 

What are a few of the 10-year highlights for you? 

I’m always looking for new, talented writers, and I’m proud of the times I was right about writers like T Kira Madden and Joel Kim Booster. I also love when really established writers come and have a blast. Joan Juliet Buck, the former editor-in-chief of French Vogue, came to read one night and was cheering everyone on from a seat on the banquette. 

What’s wonderful, too, is when people come to the reading as either writers or audience members and keep coming back. They bring their friends, want to read again, or even become friends! I met Naomi Extra that way. I read her work online and loved it, so I invited her to read, and now I’m proud to call her a friend. She’ll be reading at the anniversary, too! 

The greatest compliment is when people want to come back for any reason. I’m so glad they’ve found reasons for the last 10 years. Here’s to many more.


'Orson’s Shadow' at Theater for the New City

Photo by Lola Sáenz 

"Orson's Shadow," written and directed by Austin Pendleton (pictured above), is wrapping up its two-plus-week run on Sunday at Theater for the New City. 

The play debuted in 2000 and had its NYC premiere in 2005 at the Barrow Street Theatre, where it had a 349-performance run. 

The plot, via Theater for the New City
"Orson’s Shadow," based on true events, takes place on the stage of the Gaiety Theatre in Dublin and later on the stage of the Royal Court Theatre. In his declining years, Orson Welles is directing a production of Eugène Ionesco's "Rhinoceros," starring Laurence Olivier and Joan Plowright. 

Olivier is fresh from his triumphant theatrical portrayal of vaudevillian Archie Rice in John Osborne's "The Entertainer" and is about to reprise the role in its film adaptation. He and Plowright are in the early stages of a romantic liaison and his tumultuous marriage to Vivien Leigh is all but ended. The noted critic Kenneth Tynan becomes entangled in the conflicts between Welles, Olivier, and Leigh, adding tension and complexity to their relationships and influencing their decisions and perceptions.
You can catch a performance Thursday through Saturday at 8 p.m. and Sunday at 3 p.m. (Thursday is a pay-what-you-can performance.) Find tickets here

Theater for the New City is at 155 First Ave. between Ninth Street and 10th Street. And be sure to check out the art in the TNC lobby gallery — when you go to the play or just stop by... 

A look inside Trader Joe's Pronto, now open on 14th Street in Union Square

Photos by Stacie Joy 

Trader Joe's Pronto opened yesterday at 138 E. 14th St. at Irving Place (steps away from the Trader Joe's at 142 E. 14th St.). 

As we noted, this is the one (and only one planned) for the brand, a grab-pay-and-go concept offering up some of the brand's more popular items ... and (ideally) without the line wait of the TJ's mothership where people seem to always be stocking up ahead of a storm.
The outpost has wraps, salads, pre-packaged meals, fruit, yogurt, drinks, snacks, etc. 

Here's a look around...
Daily hours: 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.

The space was previously home to the TJ's wine shop, the brand's only liquor license in New York State. It abruptly closed on Aug. 11, 2022, after 15-plus years in business. Workers here reportedly planned to unionize when the company announced the closure.

Our post from yesterday includes a statement from the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union.

Tuesday, March 26, 2024

NYPD: Suspect arrested in connection with the 2 recent shootings in Tompkins Square Park

Photo from March 21 by Stacie Joy 
Reporting by Stacie Joy 

A 38-year-old man is in custody this afternoon in connection with shootings in Tompkins Square Park on March 16 and March 22, police sources say. 

According to the NYPD, the suspect, identified as Waldemar Alverio, was arrested on Delancey Street by officials at the 7th Precinct. 

The shootings were said to be the result of an ongoing beef between Alverio and another man, sources said.

Following a scuffle in the Park on March 16, Alverio allegedly fired several shots, striking two innocent bystanders. (Neither victim suffered life-threatening wounds.)

This past Thursday, police said Alverio returned to the Park where he fired 5-7 times without striking anyone. One bullet penetrated a window above Niagara on Seventh Street at Avenue A.

No word yet on the charges against Alverio. 

Since the shootings, the NYPD has added foot patrols to Tompkins Square Park.

1st sign this spring of the wisteria on Stuyvesant Street (and that townhouse is for sale!)

We're officially on wisteria watch this spring on Stuyvesant Street.

An EVG reader who shared these two photos yesterday noted that residents on the block were worried the plant had died, "but it's BACK."
The purple paradise of flowering beauty® resides outside 35 Stuyvesant St. at 10th Street... and it inspires both Instagram users and jigsaw-puzzle makers.

And this fantastic home has been on the sales market since the fall — for the first time since 1958.

Here are details via Corcoran:
35 Stuyvesant Street is a jewel of a house that requires a complete restoration ... Five stories, not counting the English basement with 32' frontage (4 windows wide facing south) and a magical Wisteria Vine. There are 6 floors for the new owner to transform into a unique and lovely home. Please take note that an architect and skilled contractors will be necessary to restore this house to its previous splendor. ... This is a special opportunity to create a masterpiece. 
Price: $4.2 million.

Lee B. Anderson, called the godfather of the Gothic revival in America, was the long-time owner. He died in 2010, and his caretaker has been living in the space.

Curbed has a great piece on the home from last fall right here.

Anderson won a 2003 Village Preservation Award for "nurturing his wisteria and making the Village a more beautiful place."