Family-friendly

Make the Most of Summer

Make sure that you have made the most of this summer! As the end of the season approaches, check out some of these fun, free, and eco-friendly events this weekend.  There are all sorts of things for you to do – from drumming circles on the Hudson to a summer concert series in Jersey City, we’ve got you covered. Some of the events have been reoccurring all season long but for some, this will be the last weekend the event is available! You won’t want to miss this line-up. Be sure to use our ‘Welcome to the Weekend’ #WTWEPA hashtag on twitter so we can share your adventures!

Friday – August 14, 2015

Sunset Jam on the Hudson
Manhattan
Wagner Park
6:30 – 8 p.m.

Grab your friends this Friday night for the ultimate jam session. This drumming circle is led by master drummers that will bring you rhythms from Africa, South America, and the Caribbean. At the event you’ll be taught traditional drumming patterns. Once you get the hang of it you’ll be invited to contribute your own rhythmic patterns. Instruments are provided but you may also bring your own. You won’t want to miss this!

*This event repeats 8/21 and 8/28. Catch it before the summer ends!

RiverFlicks in Hudson River Park
Manhattan
Hudson River Park
Pier 46 Cross at Charles Street
8:30 p.m.

Bring the kids to this free showing of Paddington Bear. Watch a movie guilt free knowing you’re all still spending part of your weekend outside. Be sure to catch this week’s showing as next Friday, August 21 will be the last of movies shown in the Hudson River Park for the summer!

Brooklyn
Greenspace NYC Civic Art Lab
456B Nostrand Avenue
6 – 9:30 p.m.

Check out this presentation that gives an in-depth look at issues regarding social justice and sustainability. Topics like climate change, inequality, and social rest in regards to sustainability will be discussed. Stop by for a very intriguing conversation and presentation.

Saturday – August 15, 2015

Natural Dyes and Herb Sachets
Manhattan
Castle Clinton in Battery Park
10 a.m. – noon

Join our friends at the Batter Conservancy for their free workshop this Saturday! You’ll learn how to take your kitchen scraps and transform them into dyes using natural ingredients. Afterwards, you can dye your own herb sachet and once it’s done drying you can fill it with a blend of custom herbs. RSVPs are appreciated. Send an email to info@thebattery.org

GreenThumb Workshop: Container Gardening
Bronx
Hornaday Community Garden
Mohegan Ave and Crotona Parkway
11 a.m.2 p.m.

Learn how to make the most of your window boxes or containers this Saturday at the GreenThumb Workshop on container gardening. They’ll share how to properly design your contained garden, which soil mixtures are most effective, and tips for keeping your gardens growing all year ‘round.

Paper Shredding Event
Queens
Rochdale Village Mall #2
165-65 137th Avenue
11 a.m. – 3 p.m. (or until truck is filled)

Do you have a bunch of random, useless, old bundles of paperwork floating around your apartment? Head over to Jamaica Queens to properly and responsibly shred any documents with personal or sensitive information. There is a limit of three boxes per household and this event is free.

Sunday – August 16, 2015

Ecofest 27th Anniversary
Manhattan
Times Square
Broadway and 42nd-44th Street
10 a.m. – 6 p.m.

This eco-friendly festival promises to be the largest environmental celebration event in New York City! Be sure to spend your Sunday outdoors at this day-long, free festival, which features an eco-friendly fashion show, a showcase of green products, and workshops on sustainability and energy efficiency!

Summerfest Concert Series
Jersey City, NJ
Liberty State Park
North Field (Near 9/11 Memorial)
5 – 7 p.m.

Finish off your weekend on the waterfront Liberty State Park. There are only two more Sunday’s after the 16th where free concerts will be occurring! Bring your family and friends to Jersey City for a live performance by the Cintron Band.

Family Affair: Summer on the Streets
Bronx
Bronx Museum
1040 Grand Concourse
noon – 4 p.m.

Enjoy family-friendly art activities all day on the Grand Concourse this Sunday!  Join the Bronx Museum and its partners for the last ‘Boogie on the Boulevard’ of the year, which includes car-free streets and chances to enhance your artistic creativity.

Editor's Note: The opinions expressed here are those of the author. They do not reflect EPA policy, endorsement, or action, and EPA does not verify the accuracy or science of the contents of the blog.

Please share this post. However, please don't change the title or the content. If you do make changes, don't attribute the edited title or content to EPA or the author.

Explore and Appreciate Summer in the City!

Continue enjoying your summer with these environmentally-friendly events. While it’s still hot enough to wear shorts and tank tops, indulge in these fresh and affordable outdoor activities. Whether you want to enjoy the waterfront, or discover new ways to help the city’s environment, make sure to use our ‘Welcome to the Weekend’ #WTWEPA hashtag on twitter so we can share your adventures!

Friday – August 7, 2015

Elle | e-Waste Jewelry
BROOKLYN – The Gowanus eWaste Warehouse
11:30 a.m. – 7 p.m.
Elle | e-Waste JewelryElle | e-Waste Jewelry Elle | e-Waste Jewelry
On the evening of Friday August 7th, join an Open House party at the Gowanus eWaste Warehouse to celebrate Marcela Godoy’s jewelry line made entirely from electronic waste: Elle.eWaste. There is a great event lined up, including a runway show, warehouse tours, DJs, and more!

Waterfront Activities: Fishing
NEW YORK – East River Park Fire Boat House at Grand Street
5 – 7 p.m.

Join us this summer for the catch-and-release fishing clinics! Bait and tackle will be provided, (or bring your own), plus basic fishing instruction and other activities to explore the estuary. Kids under 15 must be accompanied by an adult.

Fantastic Friday: Make a Hummingbird Feeder
STATEN ISLAND – Greenbelt Nature Center
11 a.m. – noon
Fantastic Friday: Make a Hummingbird Feeder
Search for these colorful fast flyers, then make a hummingbird feeder to take home. Ages 7+.

Saturday – August 8, 2015

2015 Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival
QUEENS – Flushing Meadows Corona Park
10 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
2015 Hong Kong Dragon Boat Festival
This much anticipated multicultural event features two exciting days of dragon boat racing, wonderful performances, and an ethnic food court.

Summer Streets
MANHATTAN – Foley Square & Paine Park
7 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Summer Streets is an annual celebration of New York City’s streets, presented by the New York City Department of Transportation. On three consecutive Saturdays in August, nearly seven miles of NYC’s streets are opened for people to play, run, walk and bike. Summer Streets provides space for healthy recreation and encourages New Yorkers to use more sustainable forms of transportation.

NYC Parks Beach Volleyball Tournament 2015
BROOKLYN – Coney Island Beach & Boardwalk
8 a.m.
5 p.m.
NYC Parks Beach Volleyball Tournament 2015
Face off in NYC’s ultimate summer competition!  NYC Parks invites you to join a volleyball tournament on beautiful Coney Island Beach.

Kayaking
BROOKLYN – Brooklyn Bridge Park
10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Kayaking - BROOKLYN - Brooklyn Bridge Park
Paddle in the East River with the Brooklyn Bridge Park Boathouse.

Children under 18 must have an adult guardian present. All levels are welcome and no experience is necessary. For more information, please visit Brooklyn Bridge Park Conservancy‘s website.

Sunday – August 9, 2015

Basic Canoeing
Manhattan – Lasker Pool & Rink (in Central Park)
noon – 3 p.m.

Few experiences compare with being on the open water in New York City. Basic canoe programs are great for all skill levels. Children aged 8 and older are welcome.

Canine Ice Cream
QUEENS – Rockaway Freeway Dog Park
11 a.m. – 1 p.m.
Canine Ice Cream
Enjoy music, games, dog-friendly ice cream treats, and more! Giveaway bag for the first 25 people.

GreenThumb Workshop: Feed the Soil, Not the Plants
STATEN ISLAND – Joe Hozlka Community Garden
11 a.m. – 1 p.m.
GreenThumb Workshop: Feed the Soil, Not the Plants
Learn how to use compost to improve your plants’ soil. This workshop is given in partnership with NYC Compost Project.

Editor's Note: The opinions expressed here are those of the author. They do not reflect EPA policy, endorsement, or action, and EPA does not verify the accuracy or science of the contents of the blog.

Please share this post. However, please don't change the title or the content. If you do make changes, don't attribute the edited title or content to EPA or the author.

Summer’s in Full Swing – Get in on the Fun!

Hit the reset button as the beginning of August approaches on Saturday! Spend your weekend outdoors with family and friends at one of these fresh, “green”, and affordable events we’ve got featured here for you. Whether you’re fashion forward and attending the Eco-Fashion Show or practicing Yoga on the Beach, make sure to use our ‘Welcome to the Weekend’ #WTWEPA hashtag on twitter so we can share your adventures!

Friday – July 31, 2015

Hip Hop Dance Aerobics
Brooklyn
Brooklyn Bridge Park
334 Furman Street
Friday, July 31, 2015
7 p.m.

Get your groove on this Friday night at the Brooklyn Bridge Park! This cardio workout in disguise features hip hop music and teachers that break down each movement for participants of all levels. Be sure to get there by 6:30pm to complete registration and note that you must fill out a waiver upon sign-in!

Downtown Sounds
Glen Cove
Glen Cove Village Square
Intersection of Glen and Bridge Streets
Friday, July 31, 2015
7 – 10 p.m.

Get away from the hustle of the city and head out to Glen Cove for their “Downtown Sounds” event! There will be live music and a chance to check out some great restaurants near Village Square.

Manhattan
Museum of the City of New York
1220 Fifth Avenue
Friday, July 31, 2015
11 a.m. – 2 p.m.

Spend your Friday with the kids at the exhibition ‘Saving Place: Fifty Years of New York City Landmarks’. This interactive activity allows for kids to be an architect for the day!  They can draw their own New York City while you explore the museum on a self-guided tour.

Saturday – August 1, 2015

Fundamentals of Composting Workshop
Manhattan
Pleasant Village Community Garden
Saturday, August 1, 2015
10 a.m. – noon

Did you know that a third of our food waste ends up in landfills? If you’re interested in composting and would like to learn how to turn your food scraps into feed for gardens or household plants, this free workshop is right up your alley. Keep in mind that composting can eliminate up to 30 percent of your household food waste from your garbage can! RSVP by emailing pleasantvillagegarden@gmail.com

Open House at Flagship Farm in LIC
Queens
Flagship Farm
37-18 Northern Boulevard
Long Island City
Saturday, August 1, 2015
11 a.m.4 p.m.

Come check out Queens’ very own gigantic rooftop farm this Saturday. Whether you choose to browse the layout, buy some farm-fresh produce, or just enjoy the view – be sure to take it all in! There is no registration necessary for your visit and the open house is free!

Yoga on the Beach
Rockaway Beach
Beach off 108th Street, Off Shorefront Parkway
Saturday, August 1, 2015
8 – 9 a.m.

Grab your friends and join yoga instructor Helen Kilgallen for this free, beginner’s Hatha Yoga class. This early morning class will be a wonderful way to unwind after a busy Friday night. Be sure to bring a mat, large towel, or blanket for your practice.

Sunday – August 2, 2015

Eco Fashion in the Park
Bronx to Manhattan
Highbridge Park (Bridge Area)
Enter by 172nd Street and Amsterdam Ave.
Sunday, August 2, 2015
3:30 – 5 p.m.

This event will guarantee you a very busy Sunday!  Get everyone together and head over to Highbridge Park to witness this first-ever fashion show with a runway that spans over the High Bridge. These eco-friendly fashions will be the star of the day but be sure to check out the clothing swap boutique with drop off beginning at 1 p.m. and the actual swap starting at 5 p.m. as well.

Birds of Prey
Brooklyn
Brooklyn Bridge Park
Sunday, August 2, 2015
11 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Bring the kiddies to Brooklyn Bridge Park on Sunday for a fun few hours of learning!  Join Volunteers for Wildlife as they speak about raptors from 11 a.m. to noon and then join Private Picassos for an outdoor pop-up reading room and art activities.

Bark in the Park
Brooklyn
Municipal Credit Union Park
1904 Surf Ave
Sunday, August 2, 2015
11:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.

The Alliance for NYC’s Animals and the Brooklyn Cyclones host this awesome, fun-filled event for you and your dog! Watch as the Cyclones take on the Batavia Muckdogs at MCU Park (tickets for one person and up to two dogs are $10). If you’d rather play in the park with your pup, don’t fret. Activities outside the stadium begin at noon, which include free photo-ops and free personalized pet tag give-aways.

Editor's Note: The opinions expressed here are those of the author. They do not reflect EPA policy, endorsement, or action, and EPA does not verify the accuracy or science of the contents of the blog.

Please share this post. However, please don't change the title or the content. If you do make changes, don't attribute the edited title or content to EPA or the author.

Welcome to the Weekend!

Looking for more ways to appreciate the summer around NYC? Our ‘Welcome to the Weekend’ summer series brings you a variety of green, fun, and free/affordable activities to do this weekend. We hope you will join some of them, and that you’ll let us know about other events not on our list. As you embark on your adventures, tweet us (@EPAregion2) with our ‘Welcome to the Weekend’ hashtag #WTWEPA!

Friday – July 24, 2015

Land_Slide Art Gallery
Brooklyn
6 – 9 p.m.

Land __ Slide features Caroline Voagen Nelson’s and Rebecca Sherman’s dynamic representations of moving environments in a sustainable, eco-conscious era. Both artists used sustainable products and materials (including sustainable inks and wood) and no harmful chemicals during the process and production of the artworks in this exhibit.

Observing with the Amateur Astronomers Association of New York
Manhattan
7 – 10 p.m.

See Jupiter, Venus and the Moon through members’ telescopes which will be set up on the plaza just north of the fountain at Lincoln Center.

Billopp Shores: The Ebb and Flow of Man and Nature
Staten Island
10 a.m. – 5 p.m.

This retrospective exhibition offers a glimpse of man and nature’s impact on the development of the waterfront in Conference House Park.

Saturday – July 25, 2015

Being Green at Home
Hillsborough Township, NJ
9 a.m. – Noon

Have you ever wondered what you could be doing at home to be more sustainable? Join Duke Farms staff member, Clifford Berek, and discuss three main areas where small changes make a big impact. During this program, we will discuss the four “R”s, your options when it comes to power and your impact on your local water resources.

Yoga on the Green with New York Sports Club
Queens
9:30 10:30 a.m.

Summer’s here so join us for some yoga on the Center Green in Glendale. Classes are free. If the weather is questionable or rainy the class will be moved inside NYSC. You don’t need to be a member of NYSC to participate.

Coffee & Tea | Bed-Stuy Community Forum
Brooklyn
11 a.m. – 1 p.m.

This environmental, arts, and educational initiative calls on citizens to co-produce creative and open ways to share skills and showcase recent cultural and environmental initiatives happening locally in order to amplify the diverse voices and encourage future civic engagement.

NYC Poetry Festival
Governors Island
Saturday – Sunday
11 a.m.

The Poetry Society of New York will once again invite New Yorkers to come together for this two day festival to celebrate NYC’s vibrant poetry community. The event will include over 60 poetry organizations and 250 poets on its three stages; a Vendor’s Village where local booksellers, artists and craft makers will sell their wares; a beer garden sponsored by Brooklyn Brewery; healthy and delicious food options; poetic installation art throughout, the Ring of Daisies open mic; and last but not least, the Children’s Poetry Festival, complete with writing games and its own fourth, all-kids stage.

Sunday – July 26, 2015

6th Annual Butterfly Day
Lyndhurst, NJ
10 a.m. – 3 p.m.

The highly-anticipated butterfly festival is back!  Join us for a fun-filled day of butterfly walks and FREE kids activities. Kids activities include a scavenger hunt, face painting, a butterfly costume contest (12 and under), and butterfly crafts. Onsite experts to help identify the various butterflies and provide gardening tips.

Family Art Project: Butterfly Habitat Hats
Bronx 
10 a.m. – 1 p.m.

See them and sketch them, flying and sipping the nectar of their favorite shrub or flowering bush. Then learn about local butterfly species and make a butterfly habitat hat.

Wave Hill Garden Highlights Walk
Bronx
2 – 3 p.m.

Join us for an hour-long tour of seasonal garden highlights.

Editor's Note: The opinions expressed here are those of the author. They do not reflect EPA policy, endorsement, or action, and EPA does not verify the accuracy or science of the contents of the blog.

Please share this post. However, please don't change the title or the content. If you do make changes, don't attribute the edited title or content to EPA or the author.

Celebrate Summer

Every weekend should be a celebration when it’s the summer! Our ‘Welcome to the Weekend’ summer series guarantees you’ll have a fun, affordable, and green summer.

If you do attend some of these events please be sure to use our ‘Welcome to the Weekend’ hashtag, #WTWEPA, on twitter so we can share the fun!

Friday – July 17, 2015

Zumba on the Green with NYSC
Queens
8000 Cooper Avenue
Friday, July 17, 2015
5:30 p.m. – 6:30 p.m.

Join New York Sports Club in Glendale on Friday evening for an hour of Zumba fun! The class will be on the Center Green and if weather is questionable, don’t worry – the class will be moved inside! This is a treat – you don’t even have to be a NYSC member to take the class.

High Line Park Art Performance
Manhattan
On the High Line at West 34th Street
Friday, July 17, 2015
7 – 8 p.m.

This unique event brings you into the world of local artist Francisca Benitez. Watch as she ‘probes the visible and invisible boundaries that populate our urban space’ at the High Line Park this Friday! Using sign language, her performance will engage park visitors in a series of vignettes that weave throughout the park. This free event open for all ages is one you won’t want to miss!

Cowspiracy: The Sustainability Secret
Manhattan
2 West 64th Street
Ceremonial Hall- 4th Floor
Friday, July 17, 2015
6:30 – 9 p.m.

If you’re in the area and want to learn more about ensuring a sustainable future, check out Kip Andersen and Keegan Kuhn’s Documentary Cowspiracy: The Sustainability Secret. The film screening will be followed by an engaging discussion featuring inspiring environmentalists from our area!  

Saturday – July 18, 2015

City of Water Day
New York and New Jersey
Saturday, July 18, 2015
10 a.m. – 4 p.m.

This free, day-long event will be held on Governors Island, NY and Maxwell Place Park in Hoboken, NJ. It will draw thousands from the metropolitan region to celebrate the water that surrounds us! Join the Metropolitan Waterfront Alliance and its 800 + partners as they’ve organized hundreds of waterfront activities for this major celebration.

Community Paddle
Manhattan
Concrete Plant Park, Bronx
Saturday, July 18, 2015
24 p.m.

Bring your family out on the water this weekend! This free canoe trip for beginners and families will surely be a fun time. If you decide you want to join last minute, no worries – this event is free and requires no reservations.

Electronics Recycling Collection
Manhattan
119 West 23rd Street
Saturday, July 18, 2015
10 a.m. – 4 p.m.

Have you ever wondered if there was a better place for all your old iPhones and MP3 players? Consider this the haven for your old electronics. Responsibly recycle all your unwanted or broken electronics but please, no appliances like microwaves or refrigerators. For more details and information click here. 

Sunday – July 19, 2015

The Rubin Block Party
Manhattan
150 West 17th Street
Between 6th and 7th Avenues
Sunday, July 19, 2015
1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.

This event is double the fun! When you attend the block party you also get FREE admission to the museum all day. Inspired by their exhibition, “Becoming Another: The Power of Masks,” the Rubin Museum invites you to ‘transform yourself this summer’. So, why not? Give it a try this weekend and enjoy tours, art making, outdoor family yoga, and a costume contest with your friends and family! You might even catch a performance by the Tibetan Language School of NY and NJ!

*This event will happen rain or shine!

Stop ‘N’ Swap
Manhattan
Soha Square Market, Harlem
Sunday, July 19, 2015
Noon – 3 p.m.

Calling all of Harlem! Come out to the Soha Square Market with any reusable, clean, and portable items that you no longer need. If you see something new-to-you, you can take it home for free! Please – no furniture or large items!

*You don’t have to bring something to take something

Laughter in the Park
Brooklyn
Brooklyn Bridge Park
Enter Old Fulton Street, bear left to Pier 1
Sunday, July 19, 2015
2 – 4 p.m.

Don’t rely on your Twitter or Instagram newsfeeds for your weekend dosage of laughter, just swing by the park for some comedic relief! Keep the weekend spirit alive on Sunday by sitting in on New York’s only free, outdoor comedy show at the Brooklyn Bridge Park.

Editor's Note: The opinions expressed here are those of the author. They do not reflect EPA policy, endorsement, or action, and EPA does not verify the accuracy or science of the contents of the blog.

Please share this post. However, please don't change the title or the content. If you do make changes, don't attribute the edited title or content to EPA or the author.

Summer Weekends for Unwinding

As you recover from the Fourth of July festivities, we hope you are settling back into your routine and that you will take the time this weekend to unwind and enjoy the simple and rich pleasures of the environment and eco-friendly activities. Our ‘Welcome to the Weekend’ summer series brings you a variety of green, fun, and free/affordable activities to do this weekend. We hope you will join some of them, and that you’ll let us know about other events not on our list. As you embark on your adventures, tweet us (@EPAregion2) with our ‘Welcome to the Weekend’ hashtag #WTWEPA.

Friday – July 10, 2015

Exhibition: Living Landmarks
Manhattan
Central Park
Friday, July 10, 2015
9 a.m. 5 p.m.

Want to appreciate the outdoors through a variety of media? The Living Landmarks exhibit is celebrating the 50th anniversary of NYC’s landmarks law, displaying historical and contemporary photography, renderings, maps, artifacts, and memorabilia of the city’s nine individually landmarked public parks. Open weekdays until August 28.

Mommy, Music, and Me
Queens
Crocheron Park
Friday, July 10, 2015
10:30 11:30 a.m.

Expose your children to the great outdoors, movement, and music! This event will involve outdoor music and movement activities for children up to age 7. Please bring a low chair or blanket.

Summer Sports Experience
Bronx
Williamsbridge Oval
Friday, July 10, 2015
10 a.m. – 6:00 p.m.

Summer Sports Experience is a free program focused on helping kids develop sports skills. At this particular event, there will be track and field, street hockey, basketball, soccer, flag football and kickball. Best for children ages 6 through 13. To register, email Sarah Bishow-Semevolos at Sarah.Bishow@parks.nyc.gov.

Saturday – July 11, 2015

Canarsie Beach Cleanup
BrooklynCanarsie Beach
Saturday, July 11, 2015
9 a.m.Noon

What’s a better way to spend your summer Saturday than to volunteer to help save the environment? Clean up Canarsie Beach with NYC H2O, Deputy Brooklyn Borough President Diana Reyna, City Councilman Alan Maisel and the National Park Service. You will also see the area’s shell fish and learn about the pier’s history. Optional bus transportation available from Union Square. Please register for the event here.

Bicycling Basics
Bronx
Van Cortlandt Park
Saturday, July 11, 2015
10 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Learn bicycling basics, such as starting and stopping, shifting gears, adjusting your seat and helmet, and choosing a bike. This free three-hour class is great for adults and mature teens who are beginners. To register, click on the event link in the title of this entry.

Coffee Bark
Brooklyn
Prospect Park
Saturday, July 11, 2015
7 9 a.m.

Calling all dog-lovers: bring your dogs to the park for free treats. There will be other dog lovers there, and you can learn great tips and tricks for having your dog off-leash.

GreenThumb Workshop: Building Your Garden’s Presence
Bronx
Neighborhood Advisory Committee Community Garden
Saturday, July 11, 2015
10 a.m. – Noon

You may love to engage with the environment by gardening, but have you thought more broadly about your garden’s presence? Come to this workshop to learn about how to collect a garden’s oral, written, and visual history. Bring a piece of your garden’s history with you – it can be an elder or founding garden member, photo, or story.

Yoga for Gardeners
Brooklyn
Tranquility Garden
Saturday, July 11, 2015
11 a.m. – Noon

While caring for their plants’ health, avid gardeners might sometimes neglect their own. Come to this yoga class especially designed to help gardeners of all ages and abilities avoid strains and injuries. Bring a yoga mat or large towel if you have one. There will also be some mats available at the event. To register, email mobrien@bbg.org or call 718-623-7385.

Sunday – July 12, 2015

Trail of the Month: Blue Trail (Northwest)
Staten Island
Blood Root Valley
Sunday July 12, 2015
11 a.m. 2 p.m.

Join the Greenbelt Conservancy for a challenging hike on the Trail of the Month, Blue Trail. Departing from the Greenbelt Nature Center, the hike will explore the Bloodroot Valley and provide an opportunity to learn about the history of Seaview Hospital (Staten Island Greenbelt Conservancy). Best for advanced hikers. Be sure to dress for the weather and trail conditions.

Little Red Lighthouse Tour
Manhattan
Fort Washington Park
Sunday, July 12, 2015
1 – 4 p.m.

Urban Park Rangers are experts in studying human and natural history in New York City. In this historic walking tour, Rangers will explore the Jeffrey’s Hook lighthouse, also known as “the Little Red Lighthouse.” Attend this landmark’s open house on a first come, first served basis.

Family Art Project: Friendly Vegetables and Microbes
Bronx
Wave Hill
Sunday, July 12, 2015
10 a.m. – 1 p.m.

Join visiting artist and sculptor S.E. Nash to learn about the edible plants growing at Wave Hill. Participants will be able to look closely at the inner structures of fermented and fresh vegetables through a microscope. Then visitors are welcome to engage in a fun art project, creating mixed-media collages out of cardboard pieces, recycled materials and burlap.

Editor's Note: The opinions expressed here are those of the author. They do not reflect EPA policy, endorsement, or action, and EPA does not verify the accuracy or science of the contents of the blog.

Please share this post. However, please don't change the title or the content. If you do make changes, don't attribute the edited title or content to EPA or the author.

Red, White & Blue? Make your holiday weekend Green!

Enjoy your 4th of July Weekend fireworks along with these family-friendly outdoor activities. Our ‘Welcome to the Weekend’ summer series brings you a variety of green, fun, and free/affordable activities to do this holiday weekend. We hope you will join some of them, and that you’ll let us know about other events not on our list. As you embark on your adventures, tweet us (@EPAregion2) with our ‘Welcome to the Weekend’ hashtag #WTWEPA! 

Friday – July 3, 2015

Learn How to Forage in the Heart of the Urban Jungle – Central Park Edition!
Manhattan – Central Park
11:30 a.m. 3:30 p.m.

Learn how to forage in Central Park! In the Ramble, you can find large stands of field garlic with mild-flavored onion-like bulbs, plus the tender young leaves, which you use like chives. Wet lawn areas could feature spicy hairy bittercress and intensely flavored winter cress, while sunny, grassy spots with poor soil may produce shepherd’s purse, the most mild-flavored of the mustard greens.

Lola Star’s Dreamland Roller Disco Party: Saturday Night Fever
Brooklyn – Prospect Park (Lefrak Center at Lakeside)
7:30 10 p.m.

Show off your disco moves at the Saturday Night Fever-themed roller disco party in the park!

Saturday – July 4, 2015

2015 Garden Street Farmers Market
Hoboken, NJ
9 a.m. 2 p.m.

The Hoboken Farmer’s Market serves three purposes. It helps small farmers in New Jersey sell their produce by giving them a venue they would otherwise not have. Local fresh fruits and vegetables are brought to the residents of Hoboken by the people that actually harvest them. And last but certainly not least the Hoboken Farmer’s Market has served as a gathering place for the community, where people exchange smiles, thoughts, and recipes.

Urban Farm Exploration Days 
Randall’s Island
11 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Come discover Randall’s Island Urban Farm – all are welcome at these free events! An urban farm expert will be on site to answer questions. You can discover a wide variety of fruits and vegetables, meet the chickens, and learn about the rice paddies.

Pop-Up Audubon II: Fishing Fun 
Brooklyn – Prospect Park
Noon – 6 p.m.

Join the Prospect Park Alliance to explore aquatic and avian ecology in Prospect Park.

Sunday – July 5, 2015

Moderate Nature Exploration Hike
Staten Island – Wilde and Melvin Avenues in Schmul Park
11 a.m. 1 p.m.

Urban Park Ranger hiking guides will introduce you to the hidden gems of New York City and places often off-limits to the general public. On these hikes you can gain orienteering skills, explore our city’s rich history, or just take an hour to unplug from the world. Moderate hikes feature longer, faster paced hikes on rugged terrain. For all hiking programs wear comfortable shoes or boots, and pack water and a light snack.

Fun on the Farm
Brooklyn – Lefferts Historic House in Prospect Park
2 5 p.m.

Visitors of all ages can come help Prospect Park Alliance staff take care of the potato plot, herb gardens, and berry patches by pulling weeds and helping to water. Bring a hat and a bottle of water and we will provide the tools and gloves.

Summer on the Hudson: Amplified Sundays Presents Banda Magda
Manhattan – Pier I (in Riverside Park South)
7 – 9 p.m.

Banda Magda plays vibrantly danceable live music accompanied by a spectacular sunset over the Hudson River!

Alley Pond Park Adventure Course
Queens – Alley Pond Park
1 – 3:30 pm

The Alley Pond Park Adventure Course offers free outdoor adventure that fosters trust, communication, and team building. The program is two-hour adventure which includes both low and high elements. The Adventure Course is open for individuals, small groups of friends, and family.

Forest Crew
Manhattan – Highbridge Park
1 – 3:30 pm

The Highbridge Forest Crew works to remove invasive plants from the park and to care for recently planted native trees.

Editor's Note: The opinions expressed here are those of the author. They do not reflect EPA policy, endorsement, or action, and EPA does not verify the accuracy or science of the contents of the blog.

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All That Summer Brings

As you settle into the rhythm of summertime, we hope that you’re taking time to enjoy the wonderful outdoor activities that the New York City area has to offer! Our ‘Welcome to the Weekend’ summer series brings you a variety of green, fun, and free/affordable activities to do this weekend. We hope you will join some of them, and that you’ll let us know about other events not on our list. As you embark on your adventures, tweet us (@EPAregion2) with our ‘Welcome to the Weekend’ hashtag #WTWEPA!

 Friday – June 26, 2015 

River to River
Manhattan
Various locations on Governors Island
Friday, June 26, 2015
Noon 5 p.m.

Come to the final weekend of the annual, free 11-day River to River festival! There will be performances and exhibits involving dance, music, visual art, and new media projects. From this festival, you will learn about the history of Lower Manhattan’s architecture, socialize with fellow artists and art-lovers, and experience in a new way the area’s various waterfronts, parks, and historic landmarks.

Nature & Science in Dialogue
Queens
Queens Botanical Garden
Friday, June 26, 2015
8 a.m. 6 p.m.

Are you interested in the intersection of nature and science via art? If so, come to the exhibit of artist Emily Barnett! This exciting show puts science and nature into dialogue by featuring recent collages and installations about quantum corrals, snake skeletons, nests and constellations.

Parent & I Chalk Art
Staten Island
Midland Beach Splash Plaza
Friday, June 26, 2015
9:3010:30 a.m.

Engage your child in creative, hands-on learning while enjoying the outdoors! At this event, children and adults will collaborate to create outdoor chalk art masterpieces.

Tai Chi for Adults
Bronx
Poe Park Visitor Center
Friday, June 26, 2015
11:30 a.m. 12:30 p.m.

Exercising is a great way to enjoy the environment while taking care of one’s health. Come to this event to learn Tai Chi, the exercise regimen which includes movement and breathing techniques for health, balance and well-being. Great for senior citizens!

 Saturday – June 27, 2015 

Family Art Project: Lavender Blooms 
Bronx
Wave Hill
Saturday, June 27, 2015
10 a.m. – 1 p.m.

The calming and fragrant lavender flower makes for great arts and crafts projects and keepsakes. Join this event to make pillows, sachets, Hacky Sacks, and more out of this great flower.

Yoga on the Beach 
Queens
Rockaway Beach and Boardwalk
Saturday, June 27, 2015
8 9 a.m.

Refine your flexibility, strength, and endurance while enjoying the beach! Yoga instructor Helen Kilgallen from Elaine’s Dance School will teach this beginner Hatha Yoga class. Bring a mat, large towel, or blanket.

Insect Walk 
Manhattan
Highbridge Park
Saturday, June 27, 2015
9:3011 a.m.

The concrete jungle provides us many opportunities to observe wildlife. Expert naturalist Mike Feller, who has over 25 years of experience in NYC Parks, will lead a tour focusing on Highbridge Park’s insects (and the birds they attract).

Solar Observation 
Bronx
Poe Park Visitor Center
Saturday, June 27, 2015
11 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.

Are you interested in learning about the environment beyond what the eye can see? Join the Amateur Astronomers Association members as they help visitors engage in solar observations during the day! Telescopes specially filtered to view the sun will be provided.

 Sunday – June 28, 2015

Saltwater Fishing
Manhattan
West Harlem Piers Park
Sunday June 28, 2015
11 a.m. 3 p.m.

Catch-and-release fishing is a great way to interact with the environment without depleting it. Experienced Rangers will teach the ethics of fishing and the ecology of our waterways. All equipment will be provided on a first-come, first-served basis. Children 8 years and older are welcome. Participation in a safety review led by a trained Ranger is required.

Historic New York: Native Americans
Queens
Fort Totten Park

Sunday, June 28, 2015
1 – 2 p.m.

Urban Park Rangers are experts in studying human and natural history in New York City. In this historic walking tour, Rangers will explore the neighborhood of Bayside, originally inhabited by the Matinecock (meaning “hilly country”) Indians, a tribe of the Algonquin nation. The focus will be on the historic sites within the park and Native American culture.

It’s My Park 
Brooklyn
Brower Park
Sunday, June 28, 2015
11 a.m. – 3 p.m.

Don’t just interact with nature—volunteer to improve its health! “It’s My Park” presents a series of volunteer activities that you can participate in to care for your parks. In this event, volunteers are needed to mulch, weed, and plant a butterfly garden and tree beds. Please bring your own work gloves, and email info@friendsofbrowerpark.org to register for the project.

Frida Kahlo: “Art, Garden, Life”
Bronx
The New York Botanical Garden
Sunday, June 28, 2015
10 a.m. – 6 p.m.

This must-see exhibit explores the ways in which nature—especially plant imagery—influences the work of renowned artist Frida Kahlo. Visitors can engage in hands-on art activities for kids, access rare photos, footage, and expert audio commentary, and create their own Frida Selfie.

Editor's Note: The opinions expressed here are those of the author. They do not reflect EPA policy, endorsement, or action, and EPA does not verify the accuracy or science of the contents of the blog.

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The World Wide Web in My Kitchen

About the author: Kelly Leovic has worked at EPA for 21 years and manages EPA’s Environmental and Community Outreach Program in Research Triangle Park, NC. She is also EPA’s Federal Women’s Program Manager in Research Triangle Park. On occasion, she can be seen in EPA’s Fitness Center – just another one of EPA’s family-friendly options.

I’m sitting in my kitchen doing email and glance up from the laptop, noticing a good-sized cobweb between two pottery pieces on an upper shelf. I’m working at home this morning as part of EPA’s telecommuting or flexiplace program.

Over 80% of employees at EPA in Research Triangle Park use flexiplace or other family-friendly work options such as flexible work hours, part-time employment, or a compressed work schedule (working 9 hour days, with 1 day off every other week). These flexible work options make work more enjoyable because they allow employees to balance work and personal lives. For me, that would be three kids who span elementary, middle, and high school.

Photo of people sitting around a table at a luncheonEmployees aren’t the only ones who have taken notice of EPA’s family-friendly “environment.” This is the 4th year that our EPA campus has been named to the NC Family Friendly Top 40 which is sponsored by Carolina Parent Magazine. We celebrated on September 17 at a breakfast which honored awardees. Check out the picture…our group of eight even had two EPA guys join us, so you can see that workplace flexibility and family friendly isn’t just a female thing.

In addition to each other’s company, we also enjoyed the keynote speaker, Pamela Stone, who shared data and insights from her research on why well-educated women often opt out of the workforce. In summary, most of the women in her study who “opted out” after having children did so not because of “family” but because their employers didn’t offer them the opportunity to balance their work with their family. I feel fortunate to work at an Agency that does offer a gourmet “menu” of flexibility options as well as for a supervisor who walks the talk with regard to supporting employee flexibility. As a result, I love my job and work hard at it because I love it.

So, what do I do now? Jump out of my seat and get the extended handle duster or stay at my computer and type this Blog? Reflecting on how the web could look by the end of October (say the 31st) and considering what an environmentally-friendly decoration a natural spider web would be, I stay seated and appreciate that I am able to telecommute.

Editor's Note: The opinions expressed here are those of the author. They do not reflect EPA policy, endorsement, or action, and EPA does not verify the accuracy or science of the contents of the blog.

Please share this post. However, please don't change the title or the content. If you do make changes, don't attribute the edited title or content to EPA or the author.