Likely the most innovative Halloween event you will come across, The Great Jack O’ Lantern Blaze in Croton-on-Hudson, NY is simply awe-inspiring. With over 7,000 pumpkins hand-carved and illuminated, the sheer artistry behind this spectacular show is what always gets me. Continue reading
Coronavirus has gripped our country and the world like nothing we have ever seen or could imagine. To say that vanquishing it through social distancing and other measures is the most important thing in most of our lives right now seems like a safe bet. From a philanthropic standpoint it should rightfully be a priority for most who can afford to give. But there are other causes that still need our attention even in the deepest depths of the coronavirus pandemic. One of these causes is Autism awareness. April, after all, is Autism awareness month.
Frank Family Vineyards, founded in 1992 by former Disney Studios president Rich Frank—and one of my favorite wineries in Napa Valley—is a champion of this cause. Throughout the month of April, the winery will donate 15% of all proceeds from direct sales of its 2018 Carneros Chardonnay ($38) as well as from “Frank for a Cause” packages ($55) featuring a limited-edition blue t-shirt and bottle of Chardonnay. Autism Speaks is the nation’s largest autism advocacy organization and this donation will help fund the organization’s vital programs that increase global understanding, advance breakthroughs in autism research, expand early childhood screening and improve transition to adulthood. Those interested in supporting the cause may do so via the Frank Family Vineyards website.
“The outbreak of the coronavirus has had an unprecedented impact on the world, with the fast-changing environment requiring navigation through uncertain times. During a time like this, we want to make sure non-profit organizations are not overlooked and are therefore continuing with our plan to support Autism Speaks during the month of April,” says Rich Frank.
The inspiration behind Frank Family’s 2020 fundraising campaign is Jennifer Higgins, who has been a vital part of the Frank Family team as Retail Operations Administrative Assistant for the past 12 years.
She graciously shared her family’s experience with Autism: “Every parent stresses out and worries about their kids. For us, our concerns are just different. We love our son Owen for all that he is and want to see a world where people with autism can discover their true potential,” she says. “I hope this campaign, along with all the work this charity does throughout the year, helps to create a kinder, more inclusive world.”
This year Autism Speaks is celebrating its 15th anniversary as an organization and will be launching a commitment to make 2020 the “Year of Kindness.” The goal of the “Year of Kindness” is to make both the online and offline worlds kinder while increasing acceptance of individuals with autism and their families. Since the organization’s founding in 2005, its core mission remains the same: to enhance lives today and accelerate a spectrum of solutions for tomorrow.
“We have an amazing community of wine buyers at Frank Family, many of whom have supported our fundraising campaigns in the past. Through our “Frank Fights Hunger” campaign last November, we were able to raise $20,000 for Feeding America, the nation’s largest domestic hunger-relief organization,” says Leslie Frank. “We’re grateful that our winery’s ethos of giving back has been embraced by our customers. We look forward to raising funds for Autism Speaks this April.”
Supporters of Frank Family’s April campaign on social media should use #FrankForACause.
Ah, summer. The season of BBQs, baseball and the beach. Give those summertime soirees their due, but few things can compare to live music at a beautiful outdoor venue with the warm summer breeze wafting through your hair and a cold drink in hand.
For some, the experience has a historical aspect to it; open-air events were enjoyed in Ancient Greece and Rome and many outdoor venues have National Historic Landmark status or have a special place in music history. For others, it’s the thrill of standing under an open sky, taking in the views while the music surrounds you. These concert goers purchase tickets every summer no matter the lineup or how high the service charge is.
The Kentucky Derby is steeped in 145 years of tradition, much of it booze and hat related. So much tradition surrounds the Derby that the race itself might have become secondary to the ceremony if spectators didn’t have tens of millions of dollars riding on the outcome. So, what traditions lure racing fans away from the track?
No matter how stylish your flip flops may be, there’s something inherently more elegant in a closed-toe shoe. With the Swims Loafer, you can go from a country club lunch to a neighborhood pool party without the trouble of a costume change. Continue reading
The concept of modular furniture (furniture that can be combined in different ways for different purposes) is as common as the word “IKEA.” Less typical? Functional furnishings that are refined and elegant, too. Continue reading
Year after year, New York City lives up to its holiday tradition of putting up the most stunning and opulent holiday window displays at some of the finest department stores. Continue reading
With December flying at us at lightning speed – I think it caught everyone by surprise this year – and families scrambling to squeeze in favorite Christmas traditions and past times, don’t forget to go to the New York Botanical Garden’s annual Holiday Train Show.
We go to the train show (located in the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory) every year. It’s always a beautiful show, with meticulously crafted trains, tracks, landmarks and other sites, all made out of bark, leaves, pine cones and other natural materials – a true “wonder” of a site; the artistry behind it is amazing. My mom, who was born and raised in New York, loves going to this show every year just to marvel at all the famous landmark miniatures, taking in the history of the city as she wanders around from track to track. And the kids, well of course this is train heaven for them! And this year, with the added space and almost a ½ mile of tracks to explore, there are a lot of trains for the young ones to watch mesmerizingly, waiting for the next one to zip by.
There are 150 Landmarks to see – from Rockefeller Center to the Brooklyn Bridge to (the original) Penn Station to Yankee Stadium to the Empire State Building. This year’s exhibition features 3,000 square feet of additional exhibition space, making room for dozens of new trains, bridges, and tracks; a captivating short film of the show’s behind-the-scenes magic; and a stunning multisensory finale of light and sound. It’s a stunning show, and fascinating for all ages. If you can’t make it this month, no worries! – it’s open until January 18th. Tickets are $20 for adults and $10 for kids ages 2-12 (under 2 free) during the week days, and $30 for adults, $18 for kids ages 2-12 during weekends. For Members, which we are, the show is free. Might I add that if you’re not a member and live in the area, you may want to consider purchasing a membership, which is almost the same price. Also, it’s best to reserve tickets in advance online to avoid potentially long lines.
Finally, don’t forget to hit the Gift Shop on your way out. It’s a fabulous shop, especially this time of year, with delicious looking holiday décor, and a great kids section. It’s one of my favorites. Whether you’re in your 80’s or in your toddler years, the NYBG’s Holiday Train Show will not disappoint!
2016 train show facts:
— All displays can be seen from 360 degrees
— 25 large scale model railway trains and trolleys
— Some trains are 2 feet long and weigh as much as 10 pounds
— More than 150 replicas in the train show
— Finale includes sound and light display in the Reflecting Pool in the Palms of the World Gallery
New York Botanical Garden, 2900 Southern Blvd., Bronx, New York, 10458
From rooftop terraces transformed into enchanting winter wonderlands to charming, artisan markets selling handcrafted novelties and gifts, hotels from Vancouver to London are pulling out all the stops to offer one-of-a-kind holiday pop-ups to guests and locals alike this winter. Here are the most festive holiday pop-up experiences at luxury hotels around the world. Continue reading
One of the oldest and most storied American summer music events, Newport Jazz Festival, will return to Rhode Island Friday, July 29 through Sunday, July 31st.
If you’re a music lover, spending a balmy summer evening tucked away at your own table, drink in hand and listening to the blues, is a treat for all the senses. We’ve covered six different cities in hopes of finding you the perfect venue and have stamped the below jazz clubs with a GLR seal of approval. Continue reading
Looking for an alternative investment? Antiques can be some of the safest.
The erratic volatility in today’s markets could make any trader, however skilled, want to throw up his hands, cut his losses and toss his remaining money into a commode. A commode, of course, being a chest of drawers from France, circa 1750.
Spectre, featuring Daniel Craig as James Bond, and the 24th Bond film produced by Eon Productions, goes live in Theaters Nov. 6
The first James Bond film, Dr. No, was released 53 years ago this month. It was mocked by many critics following its debut on October 5th, 1962 at the London Pavilion. Time Magazine described Sean Connery as “a great, big, hairy marshmallow.” Then the Vatican decried its sexual content and the Kremlin declared 007 the embodiment of capitalist evil. Continue reading
When people think about the New York City museums they love to take their kids to, usually the same places come up: the Museum of Natural History, the Met, MoMA, the Children’s Museum. Indeed, my girls love all these too. What’s not to love. But one of our favorite museums, one that’s smaller and not as well known, is the New York Transit Museum. Located in Downtown Brooklyn, it is off the beaten path, away from the tourists and crowds. Which in many ways is a good thing, because almost every time we’ve been there we’ve practically felt like we’ve had the place to ourselves. No crowds = happy kids.
The Transit Museum is located in what used to be an old subway station. In fact, finding the museum for the first time can be difficult – I literally did think the entrance was a subway entrance and not the museum itself. I hear that’s common. Once you enter it, however, you’re taken into the underground world of everything transit, including old subway trains, buses, and trolleys. Kids love to run around and try their hand at “driving” one of the buses or hopping on and walking up and down one of the trains. There are many of them actually, making the museum deceivingly much larger than one would think upon entering. In fact, it is the largest museum in the United States devoted to urban public transportation history. Who knew?
The museum has a variety of exhibits, including a popular one on the building of the 100 year-old NYC subway system, as well as highly interactive exhibits, such as “On the Streets”, which focuses on NYC’s trolleys and buses. With all the interactive activities the museum offers, there is plenty for the kids to do. What child does not like trains, trolleys and buses? It is also, simply, a place to take your children on a rainy day (the last two days in the New York area saw rain and clouds straight through, which prompted me to write this) and let them walk and run around. Though I probably shouldn’t say “run”, as they discourage that, but you get the point. An interesting place where your kids will both learn something as well as stretch their legs on a day you would otherwise be cooped up inside. And the parents love it just as much.
The New York Transit Museum is a really neat, under the radar museum, not to mention with an awesome gift shop! We love it there so much that we even had my older daughter’s birthday party there years back. And at $7 for adults and $5 for kids 2+, it’s a no-brainer. Next time the weather is not cooperating and you need to entertain your little ones, you know where to go.
The nautical theme is all the rage again this season and now you can master the look in a legitimate way. Ella Vickers, Second Wind Sails and Sea Bags are all making stylish tote bags from recycled and reclaimed sails. Continue reading
What makes the modern man; what are the constituent parts? The equation, if you will. It can be a heavily loaded question and, of course, the ideal changes with the idealist, but there have to be a few fundamental basics. Matt Moore, singer-songwriter, entrepreneur and author of “Have Her Over for Dinner: A Gentleman’s Guide to Classic, Simple Meals“, and the Double R. Ranch take on the weighty matter of what it takes to be a modern, post-Millennial man. The answers may be something of a surprise Continue reading
Business cards are not created equal. Whether it’s a standard 3.5 inch by 2 inch piece of paper or an origami fold-out that reveals your company name in reverse print, business cards showcase you and your company’s personality. Continue reading
Will Ferrell recently visited Amsterdam in character as Ron Burgundy. In a series of sketches filmed for the MTV Europe Music Awards, the egotistical reporter from the Anchorman movies toured the city’s seedier side. Burgundy biked around De Wallen with Daft Punk, found himself in a window in the Red Light District and made the mistake of ordering a brownie in one of Amsterdam’s most famous coffee shops. Continue reading
In May, menswear retailer Bonobos opened their second guideshop in New York City at 35 Crosby St (the online retailer has additional outposts in Austin, Bethesda, Boston, Chicago, Georgetown and San Francisco). Continue reading