Category Archives: Festivals and Events

Bethpage Memorial Day Weekend Airshow at Jones Beach Kicks Off Long Island Summer

By Karen Rubin, Travel Features Syndicate, goingplacesfarandnear.com

US Navy Blue Angels headline the 20th anniversary Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach State Park, Long Island, over Memorial Day weekend © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

One of the best airshows in the world happens right in our own backyard each Memorial Day weekend: the Bethpage Jones Beach Air Show, celebrating its 20th anniversary, cannot be beat for spectacular aeronautical feats amidst the ambiance of Jones Beach, where you see the action right in front of you, just above the ocean and stretching to the horizon. The intense action is so close, you often can see the pilots in the cockpits, and so fast and daring, it takes your breath away. The event takes place from 10 am to 4 pm on Saturday, May 25 and Sunday, May 26 (insiders tip: there is a rehearsal/practice run on Friday).

US Navy Blue Angels in their F/A-18 Super Hornets demonstrate their legendary precision at the Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach State Park, Long Island, over Memorial Day weekend © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

The show this year is headlined and climaxed by the U.S. Navy Blue Angels – a team of six performing their heart-stopping maneuvers in their F/A-18 Super Hornets. They are famous for the Diamond formation, when they fly as close as 18 inches apart, but what most excites me is when the two solos fly extraordinary maneuvers, including coming at each other at 300 mph. Don’t blink or breathe or you will miss it!

US Navy Blue Angels in their F/A-18 Super Hornets demonstrate their legendary precision at the Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach State Park, Long Island, over Memorial Day weekend © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
US Navy Blue Angels in their F/A-18 Super Hornets demonstrate their legendary precision at the Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach State Park, Long Island, over Memorial Day weekend © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

The airshow traditionally opens with the United States Army Golden Knights Parachute Team, who launch out of a plane some 25,000 feet high, stream down at 200 mph, and float down into the crowd on the beach carrying the American and POW flags. The Golden Knights portray the image of being the most formidable parachuting competitors and demonstrators in the world today

The U.S. Army’s Golden Knights parachute team opens the Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach this Memorial Day weekend © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

American Airpower Museum Warbirds, flying vintage WWII fighters and patrol planes, pay homage to Long Island’s historic role as the nation’s arsenal of democracy. Republic Aviation, the complex in Farmingdale where the AAM stands now, produced over 9,000 P-47 Thunderbolts, and today the museum’s collection preserves the heritage and history.  The Warbird performance will conclude with a precision aerobatic demonstration of one of the museum’s legendary WWII Fighters.

Three World War II planes from The American Airpower Museum in Farmingdale circle over the crowd including a Douglas C-47, a supply and troop transport plane with stripes on its fuselage so allies knew not to shoot it down. The others were a British Curtis P41 Warhawk and a P-51 Mustang © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

The American Airpower Museum has events scheduled from Friday through Sunday, and is where you can even see participants in the air show take off and land, and even take flights in vintage aircraft. (More details below, www.americanairpowermuseum.org, 631-293-6398.)   

The US Navy’s F-35 © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

U.S. Navy F-35C Lightning II Demonstration Team and Legacy Flight shows off the capabilities of this 5th Generation fighter. The F-35C is the world’s most advanced multi-role fighter. With a top speed of 1,200 mph, the F-35C is even capable of setting off sonic booms. The F-35C has the most powerful and comprehensive integrated sensor package of any fighter aircraft in history, giving pilots 360-degree access to “real-time” battlefield information. The demo will feature a Legacy Flight formation, providing a unique comparison between the past and present.

U.S. Air Force A-10C Thunderbolt II Demonstration Team and Heritage Flight showcases the combat capabilities of the A-10 “Warthog”  by performing precision aerial maneuvers.  Additionally, the team brings attention to the Air Force’s history by flying formations with historical aircraft in the Air Force Heritage Flight.

Long Island’s own David Windmiller performs at the Memorial Day weekend Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach State Park, Long Island © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Long Island’s own David Windmiller, who began flying when he was just  14 years old, soloing for the first time on his 16th birthday, performs aerobatics in his Zivko Edge 540, thrilling spectators with seemingly impossible feats. Equipped with a custom built project engine of Teledyne, thrust to weight ratio over 1:1,  Windmiller’s plane has a climb rate of 3,700 feet per minute, and a rote rate of 420 degrees per minute, making his plane the ideal aircraft for aerobatic flight.

Mike Goulian, the most decorated aerobatic pilot in North America, performs at the Memorial Day weekend Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach State Park, Long Island © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Mike Goulian earned the distinction of becoming one of the youngest pilots to ever win the United States Unlimited Aerobatic Champion at the age of 27. His signature air show performance combines the heart-stopping gyroscopic tumbling of modern display flying with the crisp, aggressive, demands of precision competition aerobatics.

Warbird Thunder’s formation aerobatic routine is fast paced and entertaining © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Warbird Thunder features the North American SNJ Texan, an aircraft used to train “The Greatest Generation” for WWII and Korean Conflict. The performance features two SNJs, performing formation aerobatics offering a great spectator experience due to the aircraft’s large physical size, beautiful radial engine sound, and fantastic smoke presentation. The SNJ was nicknamed “Ol Growler” because of its distinct deep and throaty roar. Warbird Thunder’s formation aerobatic routine is fast paced and entertaining. The two aircraft perform formation loops, aileron rolls, barrel rolls, and Cuban Eights and thrilling opposing aerobatics.

The world-famous Skytypers, who are based at Republic Airport (and basically invented and patented skytyping) demonstrate thrilling combat maneuvers in their flight squadron of vintage WWII aircraft © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

The Skytypers – my personal favorite – is a flight squadron of vintage WWII era U.S. Navy SNJ-2 trainers that perform low-altitude precision-formation maneuver mimicking the tactics and maneuvers utilized during WWII air battles. The Skytypers may be most famous for their skytyped messages in the sky which can be seen for nearly 400 square miles.

The world-famous Skytypers, who are based at Republic Airport (and basically invented and patented skytyping) demonstrate thrilling combat maneuvers in their flight squadron of vintage WWII aircraft © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Farmingdale State College Aviation Center students demonstrate the prowess learned at  the largest collegiate flight school in the Northeast region, and the only SUNY School to offer a 4 Year Degree Program in Aeronautical Science, the Aviation Center averages 5,800 Flight Hours a Year in Solo and Dual Flight Instruction.

106th Rescue Wing, NY Air National Guard HC – 130 / HH 60 Formation provides a demonstration of how it provides combat search and rescue coverage for U.S. and allied forces worldwide. In December 1994, the 106th established the record for the longest over water helicopter rescue mission when it saved a Ukrainian sailor in the icy waters off the North Atlantic. The 106th may be best known for a mission during a 1991 storm made famous by the movie “The Perfect Storm”. The HH-60 is tasked to perform day and night personnel recovery operations in hostile environments to recover isolated personnel during war, civil search and rescue, medical evacuation, disaster response, humanitarian assistance, security cooperation/aviation advisory, NASA space flight support, and rescue command and control.

Take advantage of the Bethpage Air Show Mobile App. Text ‘Airshow’ to 516-842-4400 to download the app for performer and sponsor information, a site map, helpful FAQs. (Available from the App Store and Google Play.)

The event has drawn as many as 444,000, and last year attendance totaled 351,000, so arrive early (parking fee is $10).

Alternate the experience with a visit to the American Airpower Museum, right across from Republic Airport, where many of the air show participants fly from to the show, where you can see the vintage aircraft in the Heritage Flight and where all weekend long there are special events, including an opportunity to meet members of the USAF A-10 Demo Team from.

American Airpower Museum Offers Close-Up Views, Activities During Memorial Day Weekend Jones Beach Air Show

American Airpower Museum’s “Warbirds” take off for the Memorial Day Bethpage Air Show © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Farmingdale, NY– Memorial Day Weekend kicks off American Airpower Museum’s summer with its “Legends of Airpower WWII Warbirds” performing in the Bethpage Jones Beach Air Show, on Long Island, with activities that begin on May 24 (practice day) and continue through the festival weekend May 25-26. 

AAM’s legendary warbirds including the WWII B-25 Mitchell bomber, North American P-51D Mustang, Grumman TBM-3E Avenger Torpedo Bomber, and Curtiss P-40M Warhawk “Flying Tiger,” will take to the skies over Republic Airport on Friday, May 24th, (practice day) plus Saturday to Sunday, May 25th/26th, for the Jones Beach Air Show.  Additional aircraft will be in the air including AAM’s WWII North American AT-6 Trainers, Vietnam era AT-28D Nomad and our Cold War era L-39 Jet Fighter/Trainers. 

Military aviation enthusiasts can share AAM’s WWII C-47 80th Anniversary D-Day Living History Experience, when WWII Airborne reenactors interact with visitors on Saturday, May 25th.

Flight experiences are also available each day on one of AAM’s AT-6 Texans, plus its red WACO Biplane.

Watch AAM’s awe-inspiring aircraft take off to perform practice flybys over Republic all day Friday, May 24th.  Get up close and personal with these historic bombers and fighters of yesteryear.  Then come to AAM to catch more aerial action Saturday and Sunday, as AAM’s warbirds lift off to perform in the air show. 

Throughout the weekend, visitors will be enthralled as US Navy Blue Angels, USAF A-10 “Warthog” and the ever-popular Skytypers, take off and return at Republic Airport. Blue Angels practice on May 24th.  You can witness the museum’s Warbirds and US military aircraft take off and land from its flight line on Saturday and Sunday for the Jones Beach Airshow. 

Visitors to AAM will also have opportunities to meet members of the USAF A-10 Demo Team. The team is appearing at the Jones Beach Air Show for the last time this year before being disbanded, as A-10s are retired from the USAF inventory.  The USAF A-10 Demo Team will operate out of their home base on the American Airpower Museum’s Ramp off New Highway, in Farmingdale, taking off and landing on May 24 (practice day) plus May 25 and 26 for their Jones Beach Airshow performances.  

The A-10 takes off from the American Airpower Museum © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Of historical significance is that these Warthogs will be operating from the very grounds they were developed and built on – and with this final performance, they honor the legacy of all those from Long Island who worked at Fairchild Republic.

AAM President Jeff Clyman says the goal for this three-day extravaganza is two-fold.  “To honor the men and women of the ‘Greatest Generation’ who built, maintained and piloted the iconic warbirds of yesteryear, in a bold defense of freedom during WWII, as well as active-duty military, reservists and the national guard, who continue this mission today.”  Clyman said that public support strengthens AAM’s mission to educate the next generation about American military aviation history, and will also help maintain the Museum’s iconic aircraft.  “Help keep ‘em flying,” he added.

As a special promotion, every paying Museum guest (18 and over) Friday through Monday, is entered to win a Cockpit USA “made in the USA” leather flight jacket.  Cockpit USA, sponsor of the American Airpower Museum, is official supplier to the United States Air Force of A-2 leather flight jackets.  Various genuine leather flight jackets and other militaria specially priced and on sale all weekend, can be purchased at AAM’s gift shop.

Park for FREE in AAM’s lot or along New Highway.  Food and Ice Cream trucks are available onsite.  AAM is also open Monday, Memorial Day, closing at 4:00 p.m.

Museum hours are 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. (Monday 4 p.m.). Tickets and preregistration not required.  Regular admission is $15 for Adults, $12 for Seniors and Veterans and $10 for children ages 3 to 12.  

American Airpower Museum at Republic Airport, Hangar 3, 1230 New Highway, Farmingdale, NY 11735, (631) 293-6398,  www.americanairpowermuseum.org.

The American Airpower Museum, Long Island’s only flying military aviation museum (“Where history flies”) is located on the landmarked former site of Republic Aviation at Republic Airport, Farmingdale, NY.  The Museum maintains a collection of aviation artifacts and an array of operational aircraft spanning the many years of the aircraft factory’s history.  The Museum is a 501 (c) (3) Nonprofit Educational Foundation Chartered by the New York State Board of Regents.

Summer on Long Island

Jones Beach State Park © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

The Jones Beach Airshow is Long Island’s kick-off to summer.

Jones Beach State Park is a world-class beach destination, with 6.5 miles of white-sand beach,  oceanfront, miles-long boardwalk for biking and walking, 2,400 acres of maritime environment. Eat at the Boardwalk Café and at the Gatsby on the Ocean Restaurant and ice cream shop; swim in the pool, enjoy the new WildPlay Adventure Park with zip lines (https://wildplay.com/jones-beach/, 800-668-7771); play miniature golf, shuffleboard, basketball, corn hole, paddle tennis, table tennis, pickleball, playgrounds, splashpad and concerts on the boardwalk and the Northwell Theater; learn about the marine environment at the Jones Beach Energy & Nature Center.

Biking the path along Ocean Parkway from Jones Beach to Captree State Park © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Jones Beach is also at the middle of Bike Long Island’s premier bike path, from Cedar Creek Park in Seaford, 5.4 mile ride to Jones Beach’s East Bathhouse on the Boardwalk, then 9.4 miles along Ocean parkway to Captree State Park. (You can also connect with the Bethpage State Park bike path.)

Biking on the Bethpage State Park trail © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Other stellar Long Island attractions and events this summer:

Cradle of Aviation Museum was established to commemorate Long Island’s part in the history of aviation and offers 75 air and space craft and galleries chronicling 100 years of aviation on Long Island. a digital planetarium and theater (films “Superhuman Body” and “Cities of the Future”). Charles Lindbergh Blvd, Garden City, NY 11530, 516-572-4111, www.cradleofaviation.org.

The lunar module built on Long Island by Grumman is on view at the Cradle of Aviation Museum, Uniondale © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Long Island Children’s Museum offers 14 interactive exhibits plus live theater, art spaces and daily activities to provide hours of exploration, engagement, and enchantment for children. At LICM, a 40,000 sq. foot facility, children discover their passions and their relationship to the world we share through creative educational programs and cultural experiences that accommodate all backgrounds and abilities. Also enjoy the historic Nunley’s Carousel, one of three intact Stein & Goldstein carousels still in existence. (Long Island Children’s Museum, 11 Davis Ave., Garden City, NY 11530, 516-224-5800, www.licm.org)

Creative play at the Long Island Children’s Museum, Uniondale © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Old Bethpage Village Restoration, one of my favorite places in the world, is a living history museum, where costumed interpreters and artisans and every home and structure tell a story. Upcoming events include Decoration Day (May 25-26); Revolutionary War encampment Weekend (june 1-2), Marching through History (June 15-16); Cowboy Mounted Shooting Show (June 29, 10 am-2:30 pm); 1864 Independence Day Celebration (July 6-7); Grand Army of the Republic Encampment (July 20; raindate July 21); Olde Time Baseball Tournament (Aug. 3-4); Olde Time Music Weekend (Aug 17-18); Long Island Fair (Sept. 13, 15); 1880s Haunted Halloween (Oct. 26-27). For information and tickets, https://www.oldbethpagevillagerestoration.org/events. (Old Bethpage Village Restoration, 1303 Round Swamp Road, Old Bethpage, 11804, 516-572-8409, Email: [email protected]).

Long Island Music and Entertainment Hall of Fame is where you can see and appreciate the artistic accomplishments and heritage that have come from Nassau, Suffolk, Queens and Brooklyn, through permanent collection and special exhibits at its first permanent location in Stony Brook. To date, LIMEHOF has inducted more than 120 musicians and music industry executives, and offers education programs, scholarships, and awards to Long Island students and educators.  (97 Main St., Stony Brook, NY 11790, [email protected]631-689-5888, www.LIMEHOF.org)

Adventureland, Long Island’s destination amusement park since 1962, offers 30 adult and kiddie rides, including FireBall, North America’s first and only rollerball coaster, and Turbulence, Long Island’s only spinning roller coaster, and water rides and kiddie rides. Two new rides were unveiled this 2024 season: Moon Chaser and the Jr. Pirate Ship. (2245 Broad Hollow Road (RT. 110), Farmingdale, NY 11735,  631-694-6868, Email: [email protected], https://adventureland.us/).

Splish Splash, with 96 acres of slides and attractions, is the largest waterpark in the tri-state area, offering 20 water slides including high-speed slides like Bombs Away, Riptide Racer, and Bootlegger’s Run, the first water coaster in New York with breathtaking drops), two wave pools, a large Kiddie Area, lazy river (Located just off the Long Island Expressway, Exit 72 West, Calverton, www.splishsplash.com).

For more summer adventure: Long Island’s Wine Country with more than 75 wine producers along the North Fork, South Fork, and western Suffolk County; Montauk Point, the Hamptons,  Fire Island, plus Long Island’s historic lighthouses and mansions.

More ideas from Discover Long Island, 330 Motor Parkway, Suite 203, Hauppauge, NY 11788, 877-386-6654, Email: [email protected], www.DiscoverLongIsland.com

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NYS Will Be in Path of Totality: Best Places to View Solar Eclipse on April 8

Grab your eclipse glasses and head to upstate New York State for the best viewing of the Total Solar Eclipse on April 8, 2024. Many places are hosting three-day festivals. Plan early and book now. © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Edited by Karen Rubin, Travel Features Syndicate, goingplacesfarandnear.com

A gigantic swath of New York State will be in the path of totality of the April 8, 2024 Solar Eclipse. Miss this once-in-a-lifetime experience when the moon completely covers the sun, turning day into night and sparking all sorts of eerie reactions and you’ll have to wait 400 years for the next total solar eclipse in New York State.

The total solar eclipse will begin around 3:20 pm (the time will differ depending what part of the state you are in), and last up to 3 minutes and 38 seconds depending on your vantage point, with about a half-hour before and after totality when you see the moon making its dramatic pass to cover and then recede.

Look closely and that spot you see is the International Space Station passing by the sun during the August 21, 2017 Great American Solar Eclipse © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

The regions, cities, towns and villages where the viewing is most ideal – a 124-mile wide path stretching from Chautauqua-Allegheny to the majestic Niagara Falls in Greater Niagara, over the pristine Finger Lakes, mighty Adirondacks, and magical Thousand Islands-Seaway are taking on a festival atmosphere, and attractions, from the Adirondack Sky Center & Observatory to the Rochester Museum & Science Center  are hosting events even days before.

A gigantic swath of New York State will be in the path of totality of the April 8, 2024 Solar Eclipse. Miss this once-in-a-lifetime experience when the moon completely covers the sun, turning day into night and sparking all sorts of eerie reactions and you’ll have to wait 400 years for the next total solar eclipse in New York State. (Photo:  I LOVE NY/NYS Dept. of Economic Development)

Editors at New York State’s tourism bureau, ILoveNY, have curated the best places in each of the regions to go. You should plan early and book accommodations (and check the weather three days before), and remember to bring your eclipse glasses (though some festivals and events will be handing them out) and filter for your camera:

Best Viewing Spots in the Adirondacks

The Adirondacks Region is going all-out for the Solar Eclipse, with many venues and festivities.  More than half of the Adirondack Park will be in the path of totality, when the entire face of the sun is obscured by the moon.

Because there is likely to still be snow on summits in the Adirondacks, unless you are an experienced hiker with crampons, steer toward fields or parks (especially the ones that are hosting special events).

Rachel Dymond, Editorial Project Manager of ILOVENY.com, has prepared this curated list of destination-worthy sites that offer ideal vantage points for the rare astronomical event.

Olympic Legacy Sites in Lake Placid: Lake Placid, home to four distinct Olympic sites used in the 1932 and 1980 winter Olympics, is hosting “Glow for the Gold” where you can marvel in the eclipse for free from historic venues including the James C. Sheffield Speed Skating Oval; Olympic Jumping ComplexMt Van Hoevenberg; and at Whiteface Mountain (a free event, but discounted lift tickets for a once-in-a-lifetime ski day, then party at Cloudspin Bar & Grill deck, eclipse glasses included). Festive events will feature eclipse sunglasses, glow sticks and music (www.lakeplacid.com/events/glow-for-the-gold-at-lake-placid-legacy-sites).

Tupper Lake is in the center of the path of the Solar Eclipse and will experience 3 minutes and 35 seconds of totality. Totality in Tupper, a free community event at the 115-acre Wild Center in the Adirondacks, will feature free solar viewing glasses, telescope and binocular view stations, make your own pinhole viewers, XL Solar viewing glasses, livestream of NASA coverage, special programming in Planet Adirondack, live creature features that focus on how the sun affects animals’ lives, circadian rhythms, and yearly behavior, solar-powered maple tastings, tours, tapping demos, special themed foods, food trucks, New Forest Music composition, live glass-blowing demonstration from reps from the Corning Museum of Glass, live community mural creation, solar-powered silent disco with live DJ, and opportunities to get commemorative eclipse tattoos from hand poke tattoo artist Jane Romm (wildcenter.org/eclipse).

Adirondack Sky Center & Observatory is hosting free family-oriented activities include a 36’ mega-screen that will provide numerous multimedia experiences, live music, food, NASA live streaming, guest speakers, demonstrations, and crafts.

Paul Smith’s College Visitor Interpretive Center: The VIC’s 25 miles of trails, including six miles of interpretive nature trails, showcase the natural beauty of the Adirondack Mountains and provide unparalleled opportunities to view, hear, photograph, and enjoy nature– and the Eclipse! Connect with nature, astronomy and weave through woodland and marshland, by ponds, brooks, and bogs. Eclipse events are being hosted on campus at Paul Smith’s College.

Saranac Lake: Head downtown on April 8, 2024 for “Saranac Lake Solar Fest” where there will be live music, art exhibitions, food and drinks, and a supreme vantage point to view the eclipse surrounded by scenic mountains and lakes. The Village Main Street is the venue for the community wide viewing party. Additional viewing points downtown include: Hotel Saranac Terrace, Saranac Waterfront Lodge’s waterfront yard, Riverside Park extending to Riverfront Park, and Berkley Green.

Lake Placid, with the sparkling Mirror Lake, is in the path of totality. Pack a picnic and settle in at Mid’s Park, a grassy area along the shore with Adirondack chairs and a pavilion, where there will be live music and activities throughout the day. Additional activities will be held at nearby John Brown Farm, and Marcy Field. The Lake Placid Horse Show Grounds and North Elba Athletic Fields are also fantastic wide open viewing areas to catch the Eclipse.

Nestled along the picturesque northwestern shore of Lake Champlain, Point Au Roche State Park is an ideal destination for viewing the Solar Eclipse. This stunning location perfectly aligns with the path of totality, and the combination of its protected beach area, expansive open shorelines, and diverse network of walking and hiking trails makes it an exceptional setting for observing celestial phenomena.

Ausable Chasm, touted as the “Grand Canyon of the East”, makes for an extraordinary place to view the Eclipse along any of its five miles of well-maintained hiking trails © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Ausable Chasm, touted as the “Grand Canyon of the East”, makes for an extraordinary place to view the Eclipse along any of its five miles of well-maintained hiking trails. As you walk along you’ll reach multiple scenic vistas that provide different perspectives of the natural beauty of Ausable Chasm, while interpretive signage describes the native flora, wildlife, and geologic history. Immerse yourself in geological and astronomical splendor, all in the same spot! (This is a private attraction so expect to pay admission fee to go on the trails but there is viewing on a bridge as well before you enter the attraction.)

Blue Mountain Lake: Total Solar Eclipse Experience at The ADKX (Adirondack Experience): The Museum on Blue Mountain Lake ($25 admission includes live music, eclipse glasses, food trucks, museum exhibits, commemorative photos.)

High Peaks Resort on the shores of Mirror Lake in the heart of Lake Placid is offering a Total Solar Eclipse package . In addition to the eclipse viewing on April 8, 2024, High Peaks Resort is throwing a lawn party from 12:30 PM to 4:30 PM with food, drink, and entertainment at Lake House. (Book: https://www.highpeaksresort.com/events-at-lake-placid/total-solar-eclipse).

Also, The Lodge at Schroon Lake (210 Registration Way, Schroon Lake, (www.lodgeatschroonlake.com) is hosting a community watch party on the resort’s property.

Another lodge that can serve as an excellent base is Lorca Adirondacks, Indian Lake (thelorca.com, 518-300-3916).

More lodging: https://www.adirondackhub.com/lodging

You can also view the Eclipse at these Adirondack sites: Cadyville Recreation Park, City of Plattsburgh Beach. Byron Park, Arrowhead Park – Inlet, Mt Sabattis Recreation Area, Makomis Fire Tower / Sacandaga River Community Park, Newcomb Overlook, Crown Point State Historic Site, Jay Village Green, Westport Golf, Powerhouse Park – Port Henry Public Beach, “The Grove” municipal park, and Frontier Town Gateway.

Visit Eclipse ADK 2024Lake Placid 2024 Total Solar EclipseAdirondack Coast Eclipse, and ​Tupper in Totality to stay up to date on the latest events, deals, and other eclipse offerings in the Adirondacks.

More information at www.2024-eclipse.com.

 (See the full blog at https://www.iloveny.com/blog/post/best-2024-total-solar-eclipse-viewing-spots-in-the-adirondacks/)

Best Viewing Spots in the Finger Lakes

Curated by Emma Frisbie, Digital Content Coordinator for ILOVENY.com

The Finger Lakes offers the perfect pairing of picturesque views with the total solar eclipse experience on April 8, 2024. Witness this once-in-a-lifetime event from the sandy shores of Lake Ontario, at multi-day magical eclipse celebrations, alongside a 96-foot Rochester High Falls. Here are some of the Finger Lakes’ best viewing spots:

Seneca Lake, the largest of New York State’s Finger Lakes, will afford plenty of sites to view the Total Solar Eclipse on April 8, 2024 © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Rochester Museum and Science Center is hosting a four-day ROC The Eclipse weekend festival featuring music and food, 200 hands-on activities and exhibits, live science shows and programs at the museum or travel through the universe under the 65-foot dome theater of the Strasenburgh Planetarium (www.rochestereclipse2024.com). 

On any day, Rochester’s High Falls is an extraordinary view – where else can you see a 96-foot waterfall amid a bustling cityscape? But on April 8, 2024, this view will be spectacular and totality will last 3 minutes and 38 seconds. © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Rochester’s High Falls: On any normal day, High Falls, the tallest waterfall on the Genesee River, is an extraordinary view – where else can you see a 96-foot waterfall amid a bustling cityscape? But on April 8, 2024, this view will be spectacular and totality will last 3 minutes and 38 seconds. Exceptional angles of the falls can be seen from the overlook in High Falls Terrace Park or the rooftop of one of the largest and oldest continually operating breweries in America, the Genesee Brew House. The 9,200-square-foot former century-old packaging center also features interactive exhibits, historical artifacts, a pilot brewery and tasting room, and pub-style restaurant to explore after the celestial event.   

Sodus Point Beach Park: Witness this celestial phenomenon from the sandy beaches of Sodus Point Beach Park alongside the mingling waters of the peaceful Sodus Bay and the spirited coast of Lake Ontario. You won’t have any trouble finding a great spot on the 1,150-foot pier with views of the original 140-year-old Sodus Point Lighthouse and Lighthouse Museum to the west, the magnificent Chimney Bluffs to the east, and the Sodus Outer Lighthouse straight ahead. Pack a lunch or grab a bite to eat from one of the village’s restaurants and settle into one of the pavilions. (Free admission.) 

Fair Haven Beach State Park offers views from 1,500 feet of sandy beaches at one of the finest public lakefronts on the eastern shoreline of Lake Ontario amid dramatic bluffs, hilly woodlands, and endless scenic views. Enjoy hiking and biking trails, picnic areas, a ball field, an 18 hole golf course.

Green Lakes State Park: Admire the wonder of the eclipse alongside the geological and biological wonders of two deep glacial pothole lakes. Green Lakes State Park has 2,100 acres of forested hiking trails, a sandy public beach with swimming access in the summer, seven cabins, 137 campsites, a playground, an 18-hole golf course (opens mid-April), and the famous Crystal Kayak rentals with glass bottoms (available to rent on weekends from mid-May until early-October). The park’s focal points are the two green lakes which were carved out of bedrock by glacial-melt waterfalls, making them very deep (195 feet!). Because of this, the lakes have a still, mirror-like appearance, revealing ancient plant and animal life and creating an amazing photo and viewing spot. 

Geneva, on the scenic north shore of Seneca Lake, is hosting a three-day “Embrace the Dark Festival” with exciting eclipse-themed events © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Geneva, on the scenic shores of Seneca Lake,the largest of the Finger Lakes is hosting a three-dayEmbrace the Dark Festivalwith exciting eclipse-themed events. Kick the weekend off with a tour of a historic observatory from the 1800s, live music, science-based winery and brewery tours,special viewing hotel packages. For the grand finale on April 8, make your way to the Geneva Lakefront or Seneca Lake State Park, a 141-acre park located on the northern end of Seneca Lake, for an unobstructed view of the beautiful blue waters and wide open skies(www.eclipsegeneva.com).

Genesee Country Village & Museums Solar Spectacle is three days of historical happenings leading up to the eclipse including special programming, performances, and activities. Throughout your journey through the 19th-century village, discover how Americans of this time period viewed, understood, and recorded total solar eclipses, viewing location experiences from the historic village, South Field Drive-In, or one of the other exceptional spots.

Other Eclipse viewing spots: Upper Onondaga Park, Conesus Lake, Hemlock Lake, Genesee Valley Greenway State Park, Livingston County Fairgrounds. Also, the lakefronts of the Finger Lakes will be a prime viewing locations – Seneca Lake, Canandaigua Lake, and Honeoye Lake each have public lakefront parks.

Visit Total Solar Eclipse 2024 in Finger LakesRochester Eclipse 2024LivCo Sol: 2024 Total Solar EclipseExplore Steuben: Experience the Solar Eclipse, and Eclipse Geneva to stay up to date on the latest events, deals, and other eclipse offerings in the Finger Lakes. (www.fingerlakes.org/eclipse-2024)

See the full blog at https://www.iloveny.com/blog/post/best-2024-total-solar-eclipse-viewing-spots-in-the-finger-lakes/

More information at iloveny.com

Next:  Best Solar Eclipse Viewing in Greater Niagara, Chautauqua-Allegheny, Thousand Islands Seaway

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© 2024 Travel Features Syndicate, a division of Workstyles, Inc. All rights reserved. Visit goingplacesfarandnear.com and travelwritersmagazine.com/TravelFeaturesSyndicate/. Blogging at goingplacesnearandfar.wordpress.com and moralcompasstravel.info. Visit instagram.com/going_places_far_and_near and instagram.com/bigbackpacktraveler/ Send comments or questions to [email protected]. Tweet @TravelFeatures. ‘Like’ us at facebook.com/NewsPhotoFeatures 

NYC Village Halloween Parade Marks 50 Years with ‘Upside Down’: Photo Highlights

The Village Halloween Parade in New York City is celebrating 50 years with this year’s theme, UPSIDE/DOWN © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

By Karen Rubin, Travel Features Syndicate, www.goingplacesfarandnear.com

The Village Halloween Parade, celebrating 50 years since it began as a small neighborhood “promenade” and has become one of the largest Halloween events in the world, was themed UPSIDE/DOWN, reflecting the tumult of the last few years, and inviting self-reflection.  

“The Halloween Parade has always been a night of transformation, but this topsy turvy year feels even more-so in terms of realizing a dream, being who you are most authentically in your imagination,” said Jeanne Fleming, Artistic and Producing Director.

The Village Halloween Parade, celebrating 50 years, gives New Yorkers an opportunity to show off their creativity, artistry and humor © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Hundreds of thousands of spectators packed the streets along the mile-long parade route from Canal Street to 16th Street along Sixth Avenue,  to thrill at hundreds of puppets, 50 bands representing music from around the world, dancers, artists, and thousands of other New Yorkers in costumes of their own creation in the nation’s most wildly creative public participatory event in the greatest city in the world – the biggest crowds since 2019.

“I’m astonished by how many people are here,” said a justifiably proud and delighted Fleming. “We invite people to come out and they did!”

Village Halloween Parade Director Jeanne Fleming was delighted with a huge turnout of  costumed parade goers and spectators © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Spectators thrilled at seeing hundreds of puppets, 50 bands and dancers representing music from around the world and New York’s melting pot, and tens of thousands of New Yorkers in costumes of their own creation, in the nation’s most wildly creative public participatory event in the greatest city in the world.

The Village Halloween Parade, celebrating 50 years, gives New Yorkers an opportunity to show off their creativity, artistry and humor © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Started by Greenwich Village mask maker and puppeteer Ralph Lee in 1973, the Parade began as a walk from house to house in his neighborhood for his children and their friends.

After the second year of this local promenade, Theater for the New City stepped in and produced the event on a larger scale as part of their City in the Streets program.

 
Fogo Azul NYC, an all-women Brazilian drumline, is one of about 50 bands joining the Village Halloween Parade © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Today the Parade is the largest celebration of its kind in the world and has been picked by Festivals International as “The Best Event in the World” for October 31.

Now, 50 years later, the Parade draws more than 70,000 costumed participants and some 2 million spectators, including television-viewing audience, live on NY1 beginning at 8 pm.

Parade marchers really interact with the spectators, to everyone’s delight © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

In 1994, the Mayor of the City of New York issued a Proclamation honoring the Village Halloween Parade for 20 years of bringing everyone in the City together in a joyful and creative way and being a boon to the economic life of the City. “New York is the world’s capital of creativity and entertainment. The Village Halloween Parade presents the single greatest opportunity for all New Yorkers to exhibit their creativity in an event that is one-of-a-kind, unique and memorable every year. New Yorkers of all ages love Halloween, and this delightful event enables them to enjoy it every year and join in with their own special contributions. The Halloween Parade in Greenwich Village is a true cultural treasure.”

The irony is that while Halloween is about taking on a completely different persona, at the Village Halloween Parade, we see New Yorkers’ true selves.

And that’s true to the Upside/Down-Inside/Out theme.

Here are more photo highlights:

The Village Halloween Parade in New York City marks 50 years © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Giant puppets are a hallmark of the New York City’s Village Halloween Parade © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
The Village Halloween Parade, celebrating 50 years, gives New Yorkers an opportunity to show off their creativity, artistry and humor © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Giant puppets are a hallmark of the New York City’s Village Halloween Parade © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
The Village Halloween Parade, celebrating 50 years, gives New Yorkers an opportunity to show off their creativity, artistry and humor © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
The Village Halloween Parade, celebrating 50 years, gives New Yorkers an opportunity to show off their creativity, artistry and humor © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Parade marchers really interact with the spectators, to everyone’s delight © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Village Halloween Parade marchers enjoy interacting with spectators much to their delight © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
The Village Halloween Parade, celebrating 50 years, gives New Yorkers an opportunity to show off their creativity, artistry and humor © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
All you need to march in the Village Halloween Parade – the people’s parade – is a costume © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
The Village Halloween Parade in New York City marks 50 years © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com 
Village Halloween Parade showcases the many cultures of New York’s melting pot © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
The Village Halloween Parade in New York City marks 50 years © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com 
Grand Marshal of the Village Halloween Parade Laurie Anderson © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
 Fogo Azul NYC, an all-women Brazilian drumline, is one of about 50 bands joining the Village Halloween Parade © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
L Train Brass Band brings its joyful music to the Village Halloween Parade © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
All you need to march in the Village Halloween Parade – the people’s parade – is a costume © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
The Village Halloween Parade, celebrating 50 years, gives New Yorkers an opportunity to show off their creativity, artistry and humor © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Thriller at the Village Halloween Parade © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Village Halloween Parade features some of the best bands in New York City© Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Village Halloween Parade features some of the best bands in New York City© Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Music is in the air at the village Halloween Parade © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
The Village Halloween Parade, celebrating 50 years, gives New Yorkers an opportunity to show off their creativity, artistry and humor © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
The Village Halloween Parade, celebrating 50 years, gives New Yorkers an opportunity to show off their creativity, artistry and humor © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Costumed Village Halloween Parade enjoy interacting with spectators much to their delight © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Costumed Village Halloween Parade enjoy interacting with spectators much to their delight © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Costumed Village Halloween Parade enjoy interacting with spectators much to their delight © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
The Village Halloween Parade in New York City is celebrating 50 years with the theme, UPSIDE/DOWN © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

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© 2023 Travel Features Syndicate, a division of Workstyles, Inc. All rights reserved. Visit goingplacesfarandnear.com, www.huffingtonpost.com/author/karen-rubin, and travelwritersmagazine.com/TravelFeaturesSyndicate/. Blogging at goingplacesnearandfar.wordpress.com and moralcompasstravel.info. Visit instagram.com/going_places_far_and_near and instagram.com/bigbackpacktraveler/ Send comments or questions to [email protected]. Tweet @TravelFeatures. ‘Like’ us at facebook.com/KarenBRubin 

Summer in the City: Festivals! Events! Happenings! Make the City Hot, Hot, Hot and Cool Man, Cool

The iconic Metropolitan Museum of Art is one of the anchors of the annual Museum Mile Festival, this year, with eight major museums opening their doors for free admission and special programs, June 13 6-9 pm © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
 

By Karen Rubin, Travel Features Syndicate, goingplacesfarandnear.com

New York City’s summer cultural season kicks off with the 45th Annual Museum Mile Festival – the Big Apple’s “biggest block party” –on Tuesday, June 13, from 6 to 9 pm, rain or shine. Walk the mile on Fifth Avenue between 82nd Street and 104th Street while visiting eight of New York City’s finest cultural institutions, open free during these extended hours: The Africa Center, El Museo del Barrio, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum, the Jewish Museum, Neue Galerie and the Museum of the City of New York (which is celebrating its 100th Anniversary this year). It’s an electric, eclectic festive atmosphere, with live music and street performers all along the avenue, plus special exhibitions, works from permanent collections and special family-oriented activities inside.

The Museum Mile Festival is the Big Apple’s biggest block party, with street entertainment and free admissions to museums © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

It is also an opportunity to see the major exhibits underway throughout the summer:

The Metropolitan Museum of Art: Van Gogh’s Cypresses, thru August 27: Vincent van Gogh’s most famous artworks, Wheat Field with Cypresses and The Starry Night, take center stage at Van Gogh’s Cypresses, the first exhibition to focus on the trees immortalized by one of the most beloved artists of our time. Karl Lagerfeld: A Line of Beauty thru July 16, highlighting the designer’s body of work spanning from the 1950s to his final collection in 2019, the show will have approximately 150 pieces on display.

Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum: Sarah Sze: Timelapse  thru September 10: For this solo exhibition, Sarah Sze created a series of site-specific installations that weave a trail of discovery through multiple spaces of the Guggenheim’s iconic Frank Lloyd Wright building.

100th Anniversary of The Museum of the City of New York: The museum has amassed a collection of over 750,000 objects including photographs, prints, costumes, paintings and more to celebrate, document and interpret the City’s past, present and soon-to-be-announced future. These major exhibits are on view: This Is New York: 100 Years of the City in Art and Pop Culture exhibit explores how the City has served as a muse for storytelling over the past century; through a variety of mediums such as film, music, literature and visual arts, the exhibit presents a diverse and engaging portrayal of NYC. Food in New York: Bigger Than the Platethru September 17, highlights the City’s raucous and diverse food culture all while examining the various challenges of NYC’s food systems. From sustainability to equitable access to food, the exhibition explores the ways artists and designers are creating solutions to address the global and local challenges we face when it comes to the food system.

El Museo del Barrio: Something Beautiful: Reframing La Colección, thru March 10, 2024. One of El Museo del Barrio’s most ambitious presentations to date features a complex and culturally diverse permanent collection of 500 artworks, including artist commissions and acquisitions, focusing on the contributions of Amerindian, African and European cultures, through rotating displays over the course of a year.

The Museum Mile Festival is just the first of a whole series of festivals, special events, cultural happenings that make the city hot, hot, hot, or cool man, really cool. Here’s a roundup:

New York Philharmonic Concerts in the Parks: priceless music for free © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

The New York Philharmonic Concerts in the Parks, presented by Didi and Oscar Schafer, have become an iconic New York summer experience since they began in 1965, transforming parks throughout the city into a patchwork of picnickers enjoying friends, family, and music under the stars, for free! This summer Music Director Jaap van Zweden conducts two iconic masterpieces — Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony and Copland’s Fanfare for the Common Man — plus a potpourri of overtures by Rossini and J. Strauss II, and works by NY Phil Very Young Composers. June 13, Van Cortlandt Park, Bronx; June 14, Central Park, Manhattan; June 15, Cunningham Park, Queens; June 16, Prospect Park, Brooklyn; – these concerts begin at 8 pm followed by fireworks. Also, June 18, Staten Island at 4 pm. For weather and updates, call Concert Info Hotline at 212-875-5709, https://nyphil.org/

Picnicking in Central Park, a tradition before the start of the New York Philharmonic concert © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Shakespeare in the Park presents: Hamlet by The Public Theater, Delacorte Theater, Central Park, Manhattan, June 8–August 6, 2023 directed by Tony Award–winner Kenny Leon and featuring Tony Award–nominee Ato Blankson-Wood in the title role. Same-day tickets can be obtained by lining up (early) at The Delacorte or at a borough distribution site (2 tix pp), or by  an in-person lottery in the lobby of The Public Theater at 425 Lafayette Street, or through a digital lottery via the TodayTix mobile app or website. A limited number of advance reservation tickets can be had by making a contribution in support of Free Shakespeare in the Park. Info at 212-967-7555 or visit publictheater.org.

More free Shakespeare! New York Classical theater company is performing Shakespeare’s Richard III, Tuesday through Sunday, 7-9 pm (Central Park West & 103 St., June 13-25); Brooklyn Commons (Myrtle Avenue & Bridge Streets, June 27-July 2) and Carl Schurz Park (East 87th St., July 4-9).  You can also watch the rehearsals taking place in Central Park, 10 am-3:30 pm Tuesdays through Sundays until June 9. (You can also watch the rehearsals taking place in Central Park, 10 am-3:30 pm Tuesdays through Sundays until June 9.) Make a FREE reservation and receive pre-show notice of weather cancellations at https://nyclassical.org/richardiii.

Jazz Age Lawn Party on Governors Island, NYC with Michael Arenella and his Dreamland Orchestra © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Jazz Age Lawn Party, now celebrating its 18th year, is one of the world’s most authentic Prohibition-era-inspired gathering, taking place this year June 10-11 and August 12-13, on Governor’s Island. Hosted by Michael Arenella and His Dreamland Orchestra, one of the world’s premier Jazz Age dance orchestras, specializing in the Hot Jazz of the 1920s. Featuring Dreamland Follies, a ten-lady Art Deco dance spectacle evoking the great Ziegfeld; Queen Esther; Peter Mintun; Gelber & Manning band; Roddy Caravella and The Canarsie Wobblers, with their scandalous Charleston numbers and rebellious and exuberant spirit of Roaring ‘20s youth. Plus dance lessons, bathing beauty contest. Purchase tickets in advance. Governor’s Island (a getaway destination in itself), reached by ferry from Lower Manhattan (Battery Maritime Building located at 10 South Street, adjacent to the Staten Island Ferry)and Brooklyn. (https://jazzagelawnparty.com/)

Free Summer Programming at Little Island, Chelsea, Manhattan, June 7–September 3: The award-winning public park on the Hudson River Greenway, hosts an array of free programming including performances from Tony-, Grammy-, and Emmy Award–winners and nominees; drag bingo; DJs; dance parties; Teen Night; Broadway performances.

Free concerts and programs are underway at Little Island, the award-winning oasis off the Hudson River Greenway © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

BRIC Celebrate Brooklyn!, Brooklyn, June 7–August 24, celebrates its 45th anniversary, with a lineup of artists from around the world honoring the diversity of Brooklyn and the broader BRIC community. This year’s lineup includes Corinne Bailey Rae, Kelela, Liv.e, Robert Glasper, NxWorries (Anderson .Paak & Knxwledge).

Bargemusic free concerts, Saturdays, 4 pm through August, Music in Motion” Series — a one hour performance (no intermission), including a Q & A session with the musicians. Brooklyn Bridge Park, Pier 1; close to the base of the Brooklyn Bridge, Brooklyn (https://www.bargemusic.org/admission-free-concerts/).

Forest Hills Stadium’s 100th Anniversary Concert Lineup, Forest Hills, Queens, thru September 30: music and comedy performances from some of the biggest names in music and entertainment, including The Strokes, Fall Out Boy, Kevin Hart, Steve Lacy, LL Cool J’s Rock The Bells Festival, Duran Duran, Maggie Rogers, Toro y Moi, Weezer, Arctic Monkeys, LCD Soundsystem, Dave Matthews Band.

Carnegie Hall Citywide, Citywide, June 9–August 4: Celebrating its 50th anniversary, the beloved free concert series highlights renowned local artists from an array of musical genres. 

SummerStage 2023, Citywide, June 3–September 30: now in its 37th season, hosting free and benefit live performances in 13 parks across the five boroughs from a range of musical genres including salsa, jazz, country, opera, Afrobeats, hip hop. The annual concert series will also celebrate the 50th anniversary of hip-hop with concerts featuring artists from NYC.

Blockbuster Exhibitions

“Invisible Worlds” at the American Museum of Natural History’s new Gilder Center for Science, Education and Innovation puts you inside the body’s nerve system © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Richard Gilder Center for Science, Education, and Innovation at the American Museum of Natural History: The newly opened $465 million addition to the museum has been hailed internationally as a soaring architectural achievement, and houses world-class research facilities and scientific collections and innovative exhibitions. Admission by timed entry, reserved online. Open daily, 10 am–5:30 pm. American Museum of Natural History,200 Central Park West, 212-769-5606, amnh.org. (See: AMERICAN MUSEUM OF NATURAL HISTORY’S NEW GILDER CENTER IS LIGHTYEARS FORWARD IN IMMERSING, ENGAGING UNDERSTANDING OF THE SECRETS OF LIFE )

The imaginative architecture of the new Gilder Center at the American Museum of Natural History sets the tone for the experience that awaits within © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Harry Potter: The Exhibition, Herald Square, Manhattan, opened May 2023 for a limited time: Fans can celebrate Harry Potter and the entire Wizarding World with the most comprehensive touring exhibit in world. Featuring favorite moments, props, costumes, characters, and locations, the exhibition delights visitors with powerful storytelling married with interactive technology to explore iconic film scenes, creatures and characters from the Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts films as well as the Tony Award–winning Broadway production Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. Harry Potter™: Tickets (for timed entry, but you can stay as long as you want) start at $29 for adults. 50 W. 34th Street (34th Street and Broadway). www.harrypotterexhibition.com. (See: IMMERSIVE WORLD OF HARRY POTTER EXHIBITION ENCHANTS NEW YORK BUT ONLY FOR LIMITED TIME)

Fans and superfans alike will be ecstatic to be immersed in the newly opened Harry Potter: The Exhibition, the most comprehensive touring exhibition ever presented on Harry Potter and the entire Wizarding World, is on view in Herald Square in midtown Manhattan but only for a limited time © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Africa Fashion at Brooklyn Museum, Prospect Heights, Brooklyn, June 23–October 22 180 works celebrating the global impact of African fashions from the 1950s to present day; 180 works are presented. 

Gardens & Works by Ebony G. Patterson at New York Botanical Garden, The Bronx, thru September 17: known for her lavishly detailed mixed media installations, this major site-specific exhibition showcases her breathtaking and provocative displays of art and nature. 

Shelley Niro: 500 Year Itch at National Museum of the American Indian, Lower Manhattan, through January 1, 2024, examines and celebrate more than 50 years of Shelley Niro’s paintings, photographs, films and more. Filled with humor and references to pop culture, the exhibition offers a glimpse into the artist’s timeless cultural knowledge and generational history of her Six Nations Kanyen’kehá:ka (Mohawk) community. 

New Photography 2023: Kelani Abass, Akinbode Akinbiyi, Yagazie Emezi, Amanda Iheme, Abraham Oghobase, Karl Ohiri, Logo Oluwamuyiw at Museum of Modern Art, Midtown Manhattan, through September 16. The return of its beloved series, New Photography for the first time since 2018, the new exhibition will explore the photographic work of seven artists united by their critical use of photography and their ties to the artistic scene in Lagos, Nigeria. This is also the museum’s first group exhibition in its history engaging in the work of living West African photographers. 

Hispanic Society of America,Washington Heights, Manhattan, reopens its Main Building June 2023 after six years of renovations and improvements. Since 1904, the museum has been the home to over 750,000 objects including rare books and masterpieces from Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking countries. 

Armstrong Corona Campus (formerly the Louis Armstrong House),Corona, Queens, Summer 2023, after undergoing a physical and programmatic expansion debuts a new cultural center with an interactive exhibit, archival collections, a 75-seat performance venue and store, all dedicated to celebrating and preserving the life and legacy of the legendary jazz musician Louis Armstrong.

Ukrainian Institute of America, Upper East Side, Manhattan, a nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting the art, music and literature of Ukraine and the Ukrainian diaspora, celebrates its 75th anniversary in 2023.

Malibu Barbie Café New York, The Seaport, Manhattan, thru September 15: Barbie fans will be transported to a 1970s Malibu California café filled with the beloved doll’s signature colors and casual, family-friendly fare including Pacific Paradise Pancakes, West Coast Wedge Salad and a California Dreamin’ Club Sandwich, all made by Master Chef finalist Chef Becky Brown. The pop-up will also be complete with photo ops inspired by Malibu Barbie including a life-size doll box, exclusive merchandise and more.

New York City is the epicenter of the art world and not just the famous, prominent, important museums but a plethora of galleries tucked into neighborhoods like The Lower East Side (who would have expected such magnificent art around the corner from the Bowery Mission, where you will also find the New Museum of Contemporary Art), Tribeca, Chelsea and the Meat Packing district under the High Line, and East and West Village. You get to experience the works of artists who should be displayed in the major museums, and perhaps will be. David Barnett’s “Collectomania” is on view at Ivy Brown Gallery through June 6 (artist talk on June 6, 6-8 pm) © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Under Cover: J.C. Leyendecker and American Masculinity at New-York Historical Society Museum & Library, Upper West Side, Manhattan, thru August 13 explores the work of J.C. Leyendecker, a prominent American illustrator, and his influence on shaping ideals of masculinity in the early 20th century. Through a collection of his iconic magazine covers, the exhibit examines Leyendecker’s depictions of stylish, confident and athletic men, highlighting their impact on shaping cultural perceptions of masculinity during that time. 

Craft Front & Center: Exploring the Permanent Collection at Museum of Arts and Design, Columbus Circle, Manhattan, thru January 14, 2024, featuring a collection of over 3,500 objects, as well as a fresh installation of more than 60 historic works and new acquisitions dating from the golden age of the American Craft movement to the present day. 

Yayoi Kusama: I Spend Each Day Embracing Flowers at David Zwirner Gallery, Chelsea, Manhattan, thru July 21: In one of her largest gallery exhibitions to date, celebrated contemporary artist Yayoi Kusama features new paintings, sculptures, flowers, and an Infinity Mirrored Room. 

Collections of Culture: 50 Years of Hip Hop Inside Libraries, Museums and Archives at Queens Public Library, Flushing, Queens, thru August 21, a celebration hosting an array of in-person and lived-streamed programs.

Oceanic, Portal at Leslie-Lohman Museum of Art, Soho, Manhattan, thru August 13, through various mediums and perspectives, the exhibit invites viewers to contemplate the fluidity, liberation and transformative power represented by the vastness of the ocean and its connection to LGBTQ+ identities. 

Vulnerable Landscapes at Staten Island Museum, Randall Manor, Staten Island, thru December 30, highlights the Staten Island shorelines at the forefront of climate change in NYC, examining the past while navigating the route forward. 

Darrel Ellis: Regeneration at The Bronx Museum of the Arts, South Bronx, thru September 10, the first comprehensive, scholarly survey of pioneering artist Darrel Ellis, the exhibition highlights Ellis’s body of work that combines painting, printmaking, photography and drawing before his untimely passing in 1992, co-organized by The Baltimore Museum of Art, 

Uniquely NYC Tours

Brooklyn Chocolate Tour – A Slice of Brooklyn Bus Tours, Brooklyn: Enjoy chocolates from some of the finest traditional and artisanal chocolates out of Brooklyn on this recently resumed tour. Guests can learn more about the history of chocolate and watch demonstrations as they explore many of the borough’s most beloved chocolate shops, including the Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory, The Chocolate Room, Raaka Chocolate and Li-Lac Chocolates. 

Sustainable Harlem – Like a Local Tours, Harlem, Manhattan: support hyper-local and community-based organizations in the historic neighborhood of Harlem with this socially impactful tour. Guests will learn about many of the sustainable movements within Harlem and the people behind them such as the New York Fair Trade Coalition at the Sustainable Fashion Community Center, Simone from Green and Blue Eco Care and more. 

Culinary Tour in Washington Heights – MAD Tours & Events, Washington Heights, Manhattan: Explore this culturally rich neighborhood (featured in Lin-Manuel Miranda’s “In the Heights”) on a special food tour. Known as one of Manhattan’s Latino hubs, Washington Heights is home to some of the City’s best Dominican, Mexican, and Cuban food. 

Food Cart Tour: Jackson Heights – Turnstile Tours, Jackson Heights, Queens: Explore many of the local flavors in one of the City’s most diverse neighborhoods right in the heart of Queens on a two-hour walking and tasting tour. Sample delicious favorites from around the world while learning more about the people and organizations helping the City’s street vendors continue to thrive. 

Retail Store Tours, Brooklyn & Manhattan: Explore the driving forces changing the retail landscape and the best of retail innovation in this two-hour tour led by industry professionals.  

The Alice Austen House,Staten Island © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

New York City Borough Pass, Citywide: a new sightseeing pass designed to showcase the beauty of the neighborhoods and cultures across all five boroughs. The pass features a diverse roster of popular attractions, museums, performing arts venues, including the Alice Austen House Museum, MoMA PS1, New York Botanical Garden, Van Cortlandt House Museum, Staten Island Children’s Museum.

The Go City Pass for New York City offers 100 different options in all five boroughs. For example, the two-day all inclusive pass, giving access to as much as you want/can do from among 105 attractions is $134 – regardless of how much the actual attractions charge (GoCity.com, 800 887 9103).


During US Open Fan Week, which takes lace the week before the US Open Tennis starts, you get to watch the qualifiers, as well as a front-row seat to watch tennis stars, like Nadel, working out  © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

The grand finale to New York’s summer sensations: US Open Tennis Championships, Corona, Queens, August 28–September 10: It begins with US Open Fan Week, August 23-28, when the grounds are open to the public with free admission, so you can watch the (thrilling) US Open Qualifying Tournament, watch open practices of the tennis stars, and additional scheduled exhibitions. This year, there is the first ever US Open Food Event Thursday August 25, 2022, 7pm-9pm; special appearances by athletes like former Top 5 ATP Player James Blake, and entertainment. (https://www.usopen.org/

For more New York City visitor information, visit https://www.nycgo.com/

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© 2023 Travel Features Syndicate, a division of Workstyles, Inc. All rights reserved. Visit goingplacesfarandnear.com, www.huffingtonpost.com/author/karen-rubin, and travelwritersmagazine.com/TravelFeaturesSyndicate/. Blogging at goingplacesnearandfar.wordpress.com and moralcompasstravel.info. Visit instagram.com/going_places_far_and_near and instagram.com/bigbackpacktraveler/ Send comments or questions to [email protected]. Tweet @TravelFeatures. ‘Like’ us at facebook.com/KarenBRubin

USAF Thunderbirds Headline Crowd-Thrilling Line-Up at Bethpage Air Show, Jones Beach, Long Island

US Air Force Thunderbirds display their breath-taking precision flying at Bethpage Air Show, Jones Beach, Long Island, for Memorial Day weekend © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

By Karen Rubin, Travel Features Syndicate, goingplacesfarandnear.com

Capacity, if not record crowds are expected for this year’s Memorial Day Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach, Long Island, a combination of ideal weather and the US Air Force Thunderbirds headlining a crowd-pleasing lineup of aviation and aerobatic attractions.

The thrilling line-up also includes The United States Army Golden Knights Parachute Team will make their 17th appearance; the U.S. Navy F-35C Tac Demonstration Team; US Navy Growler (F-18 Super Hornet), the only electric attack aircraft; the U.S. Coast Guard, and the 106th Rescue Wing NY Air National Guard HC – 130 / HH 60 Demonstration Team.

We also get to witness the daring do of Jessy Panzer, a renowned female aerobatic pilot, flying for her second time at Jones Beach in a bi-plane; three of the American Air Power Museum’s flying fleet of Warbirds; the SUNY Farmingdale State College Flying Rams; Long Island’s own David Windmiller; and Mike Goulian, the most decorated aerobatic pilot in North America, and my personal favorite, the Skytypers who have been in every Jones Beach Air Show since 2004.

Here are photo highlights:

US Air Force Thunderbirds headline the Bethpage Air Show, Jones Beach, Long Island, for Memorial Day weekend © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Three World War II planes from The American Airpower Museum in Farmingdale circled over the crowd including a Douglas C-47, a supply and troop transport plane with stripes on its fuselage so allies knew not to shoot it down. The others were a British Curtis P41 Warhawk and a P-51 Mustang © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
US Navy Growlers, the F-18 Super Hornet © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
US Navy Growlers, the F-18 Super Hornet © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

An aerobatic biplane performs at the Bethpage Air Show, Jones Beach, Long Island  © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
U.S. Navy F-35 Tac Demonstration Team performs at the Bethpage Air Show, Jones Beach, Long Island  © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
U.S. Navy F-35 Tac Demonstration Team performs at the Bethpage Air Show, Jones Beach, Long Island  © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
 Long Island’s own aerobatic champion David Windmiller performs snap rolls, inverted flat spin (where the plane falls from the sky), knife edge tumblers, inside-outside octogan loop © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
 Long Island’s own aerobatic champion David Windmiller performs snap rolls, inverted flat spin (where the plane falls from the sky), knife edge tumblers, inside-outside octogan loop © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
The world-famous Skytypers, who are based at Republic Airport (and basically invented and patented skytyping) demonstrated thrilling combat maneuvers in their flight squadron of five vintage WWII aircraft © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
The world-famous Skytypers, who are based at Republic Airport (and basically invented and patented skytyping) demonstrated thrilling combat maneuvers in their flight squadron of five vintage WWII aircraft © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
The world-famous Skytypers, who are based at Republic Airport (and basically invented and patented skytyping) demonstrated thrilling combat maneuvers in their flight squadron of five vintage WWII aircraft © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
US Army Golden Knights parachute team at Bethpage Air Show, Jones Beach, Long Island (c) Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
US Army Golden Knights parachute team at Bethpage Air Show, Jones Beach, Long Island (c) Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
US Army Golden Knights parachute team at Bethpage Air Show, Jones Beach, Long Island (c) Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
US Army Golden Knights parachute team at Bethpage Air Show, Jones Beach, Long Island (c) Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Mike Goulian, the most decorated aerobatic pilot in North America, demonstrates his daring-doo at the Bethpage Air Show, Jones Beach, Long Island (c) Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
US Air Force Thunderbirds display their breath-taking precision flying at Bethpage Air Show, Jones Beach, Long Island, for Memorial Day weekend © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
US Air Force Thunderbirds display their breath-taking precision flying at Bethpage Air Show, Jones Beach, Long Island, for Memorial Day weekend © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
US Air Force Thunderbirds display their breath-taking precision flying at Bethpage Air Show, Jones Beach, Long Island, for Memorial Day weekend © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
US Air Force Thunderbirds display their breath-taking precision flying at Bethpage Air Show, Jones Beach, Long Island, for Memorial Day weekend © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
US Air Force Thunderbirds display their breath-taking precision flying at Bethpage Air Show, Jones Beach, Long Island, for Memorial Day weekend © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
US Air Force Thunderbirds display their breath-taking precision flying at Bethpage Air Show, Jones Beach, Long Island, for Memorial Day weekend © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

See also:

PHOTO HIGHLIGHTS: BETHPAGE AIR SHOW AT JONES BEACH

16TH ANNUAL BETHPAGE AIR SHOW AT JONES BEACH, LONG ISLAND, HONORS SPIRIT OF MEMORIAL DAY

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© 2023 Travel Features Syndicate, a division of Workstyles, Inc. All rights reserved. Visit goingplacesfarandnear.com, www.huffingtonpost.com/author/karen-rubin, and travelwritersmagazine.com/TravelFeaturesSyndicate/. Blogging at goingplacesnearandfar.wordpress.com and moralcompasstravel.info. Visit instagram.com/going_places_far_and_near and instagram.com/bigbackpacktraveler/ Send comments or questions to [email protected]. Tweet @TravelFeatures. ‘Like’ us at facebook.com/KarenBRubin 

New York Philharmonic Returns to Parks; Photo Highlights of Central Park Concert

The New York Philharmonic with Music Director Jaap van Zweden make a triumphant return to Central Park presented by Didi and Oscar Shafer © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

By Karen Rubin, Travel Features Syndicate, goingplacesfarandnear.com

The 2022 New York Philharmonic Concerts in the Parks, Presented by Didi and Oscar Schafer, made a triumphant return to Central Park on Wednesday, June 15, marking the return of the beloved series following two years of cancellations due to the pandemic. It was the second of four free outdoor concerts conducted by Music Director Jaap van Zweden – the first had taken place at Van Cortlandt Park, Bronx on June 14, followed by Cunningham Park, Queens (June 16); and Prospect Park, Brooklyn (June 17). All four outdoor performances conclude with a fireworks display.

Music Director Jaap van Zweden conducts the New York Philharmonic and soloist Bomsori Kim in Bruch’s Violin Concerto No. 1 in its free concert in Central Park © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

The stunning program includes Wagner’s Prelude to Act I of Die Meistersinger von Nürnberg, Bruch’s Violin Concerto No. 1 with a masterful performance by Bomsori Kim as soloist, Dvořák’s Symphony No. 7, and works by New York Philharmonic Very Young Composers: 14- year-old Naama Rolnick’s Keep Walking, who wrote her sensational piece at the age of 10 and who flew in from her home in Israel to enjoy hearing it played by the New York Philharmonic, and 17-year-old Alexander Rothschild Douaihy’s thrilling “A Human Rhapsody,’ which he composed at the age of 15.

New York Philharmonic’s Young Composers program played works by 14- year-old Naama Rolnick’s Keep Walking, who wrote her sensational piece at the age of 10, and 17-year-old Alexander Rothschild Douaihy’s thrilling “A Human Rhapsody,’ which he composed at the age of 15 © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

In addition, Musicians from the New York Philharmonic are perform inga Free Indoor Concert, on Sunday, June 19, 2022, at 4 p.m., at St. George Theatre in Staten Island. (Tickets are free but required.)

“Like so many New Yorkers, Didi and I missed tremendously the Concerts in the Parks these past two summers,” said Philharmonic Chairman Emeritus Oscar S. Schafer. “We love the parks, and we love this orchestra, so we’ve been eagerly awaiting their return. We look forward to seeing people come together in these beautiful parks across the boroughs to enjoy magnificent music performed by this virtuosic orchestra. It will truly mean that New York City is back!”

New York Philharmonic Chairman Emeritus Oscar S. Schafer, who has been presenting the orchestra’s free concerts in the parks series for 15 years, welcomed the audience back to Central Park: “We love the parks, and we love this orchestra, so we’ve been eagerly awaiting their return. We look forward to seeing people come together in these beautiful parks across the boroughs to enjoy magnificent music performed by this virtuosic orchestra. It will truly mean that New York City is back!” Some 15 million people have enjoyed the “priceless music for free, under the stars.” © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

“What a joy to be returning to the Parks of New York after two years of not being able to perform for the Parks’ audiences,” said Music Director Jaap van Zweden. “Music speaks to our hearts better than any language, and the New York Philharmonic players and I cannot wait to reconnect with the thousands and thousands of people throughout the Boroughs of New York who come to the Parks to hear us.”

The New York Philharmonic with Music Director Jaap van Zweden make a triumphant return to Central Park presented by Didi and Oscar Shafer © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

“We are so excited to welcome back the New York Philharmonic for the iconic Concerts in the Parks series!” said NYC Parks Commissioner Sue Donoghue. “This series brings together people from all backgrounds to enjoy world class music for free, in some of our most picturesque parks — this is summer in New York at its best!”

The New York Philharmonic’s free parks concerts have become an iconic New York summer experience since they began in 1965, transforming parks throughout the New York area into a patchwork of picnickers, and providing music lovers with an opportunity to enjoy “priceless music absolutely free, under the stars”. More than 15 million listeners have been delighted by the performances since their inception. All programs are subject to change.

Picnicking in the park is a tradition for enjoying the New York Philharmonic’s concert in Central Park © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
The New York Philharmonic concerts in the parks presented by Didi and Oscar Schafer conclude with a fireworks display © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Here are more photo highlights from the Central Park performance:

The New York Philharmonic with Music Director Jaap van Zweden make a triumphant return to Central Park presented by Didi and Oscar Shafer © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
The New York Philharmonic with Music Director Jaap van Zweden make a triumphant return to Central Park presented by Didi and Oscar Shafer © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Music Director Jaap van Zweden conducts the New York Philharmonic and soloist Bomsori Kim in Bruch’s Violin Concerto No. 1 in its free concert in Central Park © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Music Director Jaap van Zweden conducts the New York Philharmonic 1 in its free concert in Central Park © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Music Director Jaap van Zweden conducts the New York Philharmonic and soloist Bomsori Kim in Bruch’s Violin Concerto No. 1 in its free concert in Central Park © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Soloist Bomsori Kim gives a masterful performance of Bruch’s Violin Concerto No. 1 with the New York Philharmonic in its free concert in Central Park © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Music Director Jaap van Zweden conducts the New York Philharmonic 1 in its free concert in Central Park © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Soloist Bomsori Kim gives a masterful performance of Bruch’s Violin Concerto No. 1 with the New York Philharmonic in its free concert in Central Park © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Music Director Jaap van Zweden conducts the New York Philharmonic 1 in its free concert in Central Park © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Soloist Bomsori Kim gives a masterful performance of Bruch’s Violin Concerto No. 1 with the New York Philharmonic in its free concert in Central Park © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Music Director Jaap van Zweden conducts the New York Philharmonic and soloist Bomsori Kim in Bruch’s Violin Concerto No. 1 in its free concert in Central Park © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Music Director Jaap van Zweden conducts the New York Philharmonic in its free concert in Central Park © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
The New York Philharmonic with Music Director Jaap van Zweden make a triumphant return to Central Park presented by Didi and Oscar Shafer © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

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© 2022 Travel Features Syndicate, a division of Workstyles, Inc. All rights reserved. Visit goingplacesfarandnear.com, www.huffingtonpost.com/author/karen-rubin, and travelwritersmagazine.com/TravelFeaturesSyndicate/. Blogging at goingplacesnearandfar.wordpress.com and moralcompasstravel.info. Visit instagram.com/going_places_far_and_near and instagram.com/bigbackpacktraveler/ Send comments or questions to [email protected]. Tweet @TravelFeatures. ‘Like’ us at facebook.com/NewsPhotoFeatures

Photo Highlights: US Navy Blue Angels at the Bethpage Air Show, Jones Beach

US Navy Blue Angels demonstrate their daring-do in their F/A-18 Super Hornets  at the Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach State Park, Long Island, over Memorial Day weekend © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

By Karen Rubin, Travel Features Syndicate, goingplacesfarandnear.com

The US Navy Blue Angels were the headliners at the 2022 Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach State Park, Long Island, over Memorial Day weekend, performing their heart-stopping maneuvers in their F/A-18 Super Hornets.

The two solo US Navy Blue Angels demonstrate their daring-do in their F/A-18 Super Hornets  at the Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach State Park, Long Island, over Memorial Day weekend, coming at each other at 500 mph © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
US Navy Blue Angels in their F/A-18 Super Hornets at the Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach State Park, Long Island, over Memorial Day weekend © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
 

The Blue Angels were formed in 1946 by Chief of Naval Operations, Admiral Chester Nimitz, who had a vision to create a flight exhibition team to raise the public’s interest in naval aviation and boost Navy morale (and likely Congressional funding). In the 1940’s, the demonstration team thrilled audiences with precision combat maneuvers in the F6 Hellcat, the F8 Bearcat and the F9 Panther. During the 1950’s, they flew their aerobatic maneuvers in the F9 Cougar and F-11 Tiger and introduced the first six-plane delta formation, still flown to this day. By the end of the 1960’s, the team was flying the F-4 Phantom, the only two seat aircraft flown by the delta formation. In 1974, the Blue Angels transitioned to the A-4 Skyhawk, a smaller and lighter aircraft with a tighter turning radius allowing for a more dynamic flight demonstration. In 1986, the Blue Angels celebrated its 40th Anniversary by unveiling the Boeing F/A-18 Hornet. In 2021, the team began flying its current aircraft, the Boeing F/A-18 Super Hornet and celebrated its 75th anniversary.

US Navy Blue Angels in their F/A-18 Super Hornets at the Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach State Park, Long Island, over Memorial Day weekend © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
 
US Navy Blue Angels in their F/A-18 Super Hornets at the Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach State Park, Long Island, over Memorial Day weekend © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
 

A total of 17 officers voluntarily serve with the Blue Angels at one time, according to the Blue Angels’ website www.blueangels.navy.mil/. Each year the team typically selects three tactical (fighter or fighter/attack) jet pilots, two support officers and one Marine Corps C-130 pilot to relieve departing members. They typically serve two years with the team and then return to the fleet after their tours of duty.

US Navy Blue Angels in their F/A-18 Super Hornets at the Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach State Park, Long Island, over Memorial Day weekend © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
 
US Navy Blue Angels in their F/A-18 Super Hornets at the Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach State Park, Long Island, over Memorial Day weekend © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
 

Who gets selected? “The Chief of Naval Air Training selects the “Boss,” the Blue Angels Commanding Officer. Boss must have at least 3,000 tactical jet flight-hours and have commanded a tactical jet squadron. The Commanding Officer flies the Number 1 jet. The Chief of Naval Air Training also selects the “XO,” the Blue Angels Executive Officer. XO is a Naval Flight Officer (NFO) or Naval Aviator with at least 1,750 flight-hours.

US Navy Blue Angels in their F/A-18 Super Hornets at the Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach State Park, Long Island, over Memorial Day weekend © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
 
US Navy Blue Angels in their F/A-18 Super Hornets at the Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach State Park, Long Island, over Memorial Day weekend © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
 

“Career-oriented Navy and Marine Corps jet pilots with an aircraft carrier qualification and a minimum of 1,250 tactical jet flight-hours are eligible for positions flying jets Number 2 through 7. The Events Coordinator, Number 8, is a Naval Flight Officer (NFO) or Naval Aviator who has finished their first tour. The Marine Corps pilots flying the C-130J Hercules aircraft, affectionately known as “Fat Albert,” must be aircraft commander qualified with at least 1,200 flight hours.

US Navy Blue Angels in their F/A-18 Super Hornets at the Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach State Park, Long Island, over Memorial Day weekend © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
 
US Navy Blue Angels in their F/A-18 Super Hornets at the Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach State Park, Long Island, over Memorial Day weekend © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
 

“The mission of the Blue Angels is to showcase the teamwork and professionalism of the United States Navy and Marine Corps through flight demonstrations and community outreach while inspiring a culture of excellence and service to country.”

US Navy Blue Angels in their F/A-18 Super Hornets at the Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach State Park, Long Island, over Memorial Day weekend © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
 
US Navy Blue Angels in their F/A-18 Super Hornets demonstrate their legendary precision at the Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach State Park, Long Island, over Memorial Day weekend © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
 

Just about every two years, the Blue Angels come to the Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach to thrill audiences. This year, they performed in front of a capacity crowd of 181,000. Here are photo highlights.

US Navy Blue Angels in their F/A-18 Super Hornets demonstrate their legendary precision at the Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach State Park, Long Island, over Memorial Day weekend © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
US Navy Blue Angels in their F/A-18 Super Hornets demonstrate their legendary precision at the Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach State Park, Long Island, over Memorial Day weekend © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

The Blue Angels typically alternate with the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds who are scheduled to headline 2023 Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach next Memorial Day weekend.

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© 2022 Travel Features Syndicate, a division of Workstyles, Inc. All rights reserved. Visit goingplacesfarandnear.com, www.huffingtonpost.com/author/karen-rubin, and travelwritersmagazine.com/TravelFeaturesSyndicate/. Blogging at goingplacesnearandfar.wordpress.com and moralcompasstravel.info. Send comments or questions to [email protected]. Tweet @TravelFeatures. ‘Like’ us at facebook.com/NewsPhotoFeatures

Photo Highlights: Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach

The U.S. Army’s Golden Knights parachute team brings in the American flag to open the Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach this Memorial Day weekend as hometown hero, stunt pilot David Windmiller of Long Island, flies rings around the flag. © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

By Karen Rubin, Travel Features Syndicate, goingplacesfarandnear.com

A capacity crowd of 181,000 turned out at Jones Beach State Park for the 2022 Bethpage Air Show on Sunday, May 29 (after the Saturday show was all but cancelled due to poor weather).

Viewers were thrilled to see The United States Army Golden Knights Parachute Team making their 16th appearance at Jones Beach, military performers including the Air Combat Command F-22 Raptor, the U.S. Navy F-35C Tac Demonstration Team, the U.S. Coast Guard, and the 106th Rescue Wing NY Air National Guard HC – 130 / HH 60 Demonstration Team.

Three World War II planes from The American Airpower Museum in Farmingdale circled over the crowd including a Douglas C-47, a supply and troop transport plane with stripes on its fuselage so allies knew not to shoot it down. The others were a British Curtis P41 Warhawk and a P-51 Mustang © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

They witnessed the daring do of Jessy Panzer, a renowned female aerobatic pilot, flying for her second time at Jones Beach in a bi-plane; three of the American Air Power Museum’s flying fleet of Warbirds; the SUNY Farmingdale State College Flying Rams; Long Island’s own David Windmiller; and Mike Goulian, the most decorated aerobatic pilot in North America.

The US Navy’s F-35 © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
If one US Navy F-35 is exciting, two are thrilling © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
Mike Goulian, the most decorated aerobatic pilot in North America performs at the Memorial Day weekend Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach State Park, Long Island © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
Jessy Panzer, a renowned female aerobatic pilot, flying for her second time at Jones Beach in a bi-plane © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
Long Island’s own David Windmiller performs at the Memorial Day weekend Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach State Park, Long Island © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
The Air Combat Command F-22 Raptor © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

Also, the world-famous Skytypers, who are based at Republic Airport (and basically invented and patented skytyping) demonstrated thrilling combat maneuvers in their flight squadron of five vintage WWII aircraft.

The Skytypers, based out of Republic Airport on Long Island, perform in every Bethpage Jones Beach Air Show © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
The Skytypers, based out of Republic Airport on Long Island, perform in every Bethpage Jones Beach Air Show © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com
The Skytypers demonstrate combat maneuvers at the Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach State Park, Long Island © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

The Skytypers demonstrate combat maneuvers at the Bethpage Air Show at Jones Beach State Park, Long Island © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

The Skytypers, based out of Republic Airport on Long Island, fly World War II era training planes © Karen Rubin/news-photos-features.com

See next: Photo highlights of the U.S. Navy Blue Angels

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© 2022 Travel Features Syndicate, a division of Workstyles, Inc. All rights reserved. Visit goingplacesfarandnear.com, www.huffingtonpost.com/author/karen-rubin, and travelwritersmagazine.com/TravelFeaturesSyndicate/. Blogging at goingplacesnearandfar.wordpress.com and moralcompasstravel.info. Send comments or questions to [email protected]. Tweet @TravelFeatures. ‘Like’ us at facebook.com/NewsPhotoFeatures

Photo Highlights: TD Five Boro Bike Tour Returns to 40 Car-Less Miles of NYC Streets with 32,000 Riders

32,000 cyclists set out on the 44th edition of the TD Five Boro Bike Tour from lower Manhattan © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

By Karen Rubin, Travel Features Syndicate, goingplacesfarandnear.com

On an absolutely perfect, sunny spring day when New York City is at its absolute best, the TD Five Boro Bike Tour, the world’s largest charity bike ride, returned to its full strength: 32,000 cyclists, hailing from all 50 states and 32 countries, got to 40 miles of car-free streets across all the city’s five boroughs.

Italian cyclist Massimo Stefani leads the second wave of the 32,000 cylists in the 2022 TD Five Boro Bike Tour 32,000 cyclists set out on the 44th edition of the TD Five Boro Bike Tour from lower Manhattan © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

In addition to being the largest bike ride in the United States, it’s the most diverse and inclusive ride in the world – with people of all ages, backgrounds, abilities, said Bike New York CEO Ken Podziba.

Bike New York CEO Ken Podziba © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

The sheer joy and delight – omnipresent for the ride – was particularly exuberant this year for the 44th edition of the bike tour after a hiatus in 2020 and last year’s (held in August instead of May) limited capacity of 20,000.

Riding up 6th Avenue through Greenwich Village © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Cheerleaders, bands, banners and signs, marquees greeted and cheered on the riders as they made their way up through Manhattan, into the Bronx, back into Manhattan, down the FDR Drive (a personal favorite), over the Queensborough Bridge (what a view!) into Queens and along the revitalized waterfront, then over another bridge into Brooklyn, onto the highway and over the Verrazano’s one-mile expanse, into Staten Island to the Finish Festival at Empire Outlets on Staten Island’s North Shore, before taking one of New York City’s best rides back to Manhattan,  the Staten Island Ferry (and in my case, a delightful ride up the Hudson River Greenway). 

NYC’s iconic Radio City Music puts greetings to the Five Boro Bike tour riders on its marquee © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

What is so special about New York City’s TD Five Boro Bike Tour is how, for one day, you and 32,000 of your closest friends, feel like you own the city. The streets, bridges and highways – like Sixth Avenue, the FDR Drive, the Queensborough Bridge, the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway and the Verrazano (the longest suspension bridge in the Americas) are your domain. It makes you giddy. Neighborhoods – so colorful, with their distinctive personalities and character, ring with sound and spirit – Greenwich Village, Harlem, Astoria, Williamsburg, Greenpoint, DUMBO, Staten Island’s north shore. Central Park’s blossoms seem to burst open just for us.

Just three of the 1200 volunteers, marshals, captains, who serve snacks, refill water, help with bike repairs, give care if there is an accident, stop/slow traffic, shout cheers of encouragement along the route © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Some 1,200 volunteers – captains, marshalls, EMTs, bike repair people, people who hand out snacks and refill water bottles – add to the Big Apple-sized welcome riders receive.

The annual event raises money for bike education. Bike New York operates bike education centers, after school programs, summer camps, as well as its first membership program.

Four of the 50 members of the LetsShareaMeal.org group from New Jersey (Sikhs: Warming Hearts & Bellies) pose on the Queensborough Bridge. The TD Five Boro Bike Tour is the largest charity ride in the world. © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Numerous charities also use the event for fundraising, purchasing registrations which participants then raise money against.

The ride is designed to be a family friendly tour, not a competition, appealing to all abilities, ages – volunteers hold signs to slow the pace and alert riders to turns and obstacles.

Riders in the TD Five Boro Bike Tour span age groups, right down to this young fellow © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

TD Bank has been the title sponsor for the past 16 years; Manhattan Portage was the presenting sponsor.

Among the dignitaries on hand to send the cyclists off: Ken Podziba, President & CEO of Bike New York;  Andrew Bregenzer, Regional President of Metro NY – TD Bank; Su-Hwei Lin, CEO  of Manhattan Portage; New York City Department of Transportation Commissioner Ydanis Rodriguez;  Manhattan Borough President Mark Levine; NYC Council Members Christopher Marte and Lincoln Restler; and representatives from Prosecco Cycling, including Italian elected officials.

More information about events and programs offered by Bike New York at bike.nyc.

Here are more photo highlights:

Riders are sent off by the choral singing of the national anthem © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
“Always Conquering. Never Conquered.” The TD Five Boro Bike Tour is the most diverse, inclusive ride in the world © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Gotham Cheer cheers on riders as they exit Central Park into Harlem © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Angela “Missy” Billups and the Voices of New York© Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Bomba Yo performs for riders as they ride through the Bronx © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Special treat – a personal favorite: biking down the FDR Drive © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Another special treat: biking the Queensboro (Edward Koch) Bridge from Manhattan to Queens © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Coming down the ramp off the Queensborough Bridge you get a perspective of the city you can’t get otherwise © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
A thrilling ride coming down the ramp off the Queensborough Bridge you get a perspective of the city you can’t get otherwise © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
A rest area in Astoria Park, on Queens waterfront © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
 
The TD Five Boro Bike Tour is distinguished by the colorful neighborhoods, like Greenpoint, Brooklyn © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Live Poultry Slaughter (Comedy Club) in Greenpoint, Brooklyn © Karen Rubin/ goingplacesfarandnear.com
One colorful scene after another – you get to the city’s granular level.  You go through real New York City neighborhoods © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
Riding through DUMBO, in Brooklyn © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com
One of most dramatic and iconic views of the ride: Empire State Building framed by Manhattan Bridge in DUMBO, is very popular with TD Five Boro Bike Tour riders © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

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© 2022 Travel Features Syndicate, a division of Workstyles, Inc. All rights reserved. Visit goingplacesfarandnear.com, www.huffingtonpost.com/author/karen-rubin, and travelwritersmagazine.com/TravelFeaturesSyndicate/. Blogging at goingplacesnearandfar.wordpress.com and moralcompasstravel.info. Send comments or questions to [email protected]. Tweet @TravelFeatures. ‘Like’ us at facebook.com/NewsPhotoFeatures

Old Westbury Gardens’ New ‘Shimmering Solstice’ is a Magical Experience on Long Island’s Gold Coast

Old Westbury Gardens, the stunning Gilded Age mansion and formal gardens of John S. Phipps and his wife, Margarita Grace Phipps, which was opened to the public in 1959 by their daughter, Peggie, has debuted “Shimmering Solstice,” a walk-through light experience © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

By Karen Rubin, Travel Features Syndicate, goingplacesfarandnear.com

The timing of Old Westbury Gardens’ “Shimmering Solstice” debut could not be more perfect, as people craving holiday cheer in winter’s darkness are looking for outdoor experiences to share. Old Westbury Gardens’ first-ever light show walk, presented by Catholic Health, opened November 20 and runs through January 9, 2022.

Old Westbury Gardens’ first-ever “Shimmering Solstice” is enchanting © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Words like “magical” and “enchanting” are in oversupply during the holiday season, but are most apt in this case. Indeed, the effect is to feel a little like Alice discovering Wonderland, a dreamscape of beauty – there are even giant dandelions of light.

Old Westbury Gardens’ first-ever “Shimmering Solstice” is enchanting © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

The walk-through, immersive experience was developed out of a desire to creatively adapt the land and gardens around Westbury House into a visitor location that can be enjoyed during the fall and winter holiday season and that would remain consistent with the mission of Old Westbury Gardens, on the famed Gold Coast of Long Island, New York.

Lightswitch has created giant dandelions of light for Old Westbury Gardens’ “Shimmering Solstice” which make you feel like Alice discovering Wonderland © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

In fact, the historic site – the stunning Gilded Age mansion and formal gardens of John S. Phipps and his wife, Margarita Grace Phipps, which was opened to the public in 1959 by their daughter, Peggie – has been looking to offer just such a winter experience for 10 years. Over that time, the technology has advanced – LED lights, computer-synchronization – to create the experience they wanted: one that enhances and celebrates the gardens and architecture, giving visitors a new way to appreciate them.

“Planted” lights change colors in the Rose Garden © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

“This is a celebration of our space,” said Maura McGoldrick-Brush, Director of Horticulture at Old Westbury Gardens. “Instead of flowers, the gardens will be blooming with light. This is truly an enchanting combination of the beauty of the gardens and the magic of the season.”

A labyrinth of lights at Old Westbury Gardens’ “Shimmering Solstice” © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Old Westbury Gardens worked with Lightswitch, a collective of internationally recognized lighting, media, and visual designers to create a show that would celebrate and cherish the Gardens’ history and environment during the fall and winter seasons. 

Lightswitch’s assignment for Old Westbury Gardens’ “Shimmering Solstice” was to “truly embrace the gardens” and use the gardens and water features and architectural elements to stunning effect © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

“Shimmering Solstice” is a completely custom-built show that has been specifically designed to highlight the features of Old Westbury Gardens. Lightswitch’s assignment was to “truly embrace the gardens” and use the gardens and water features and architectural elements to stunning effect. It took a year and a half to plan “Shimmering Solstice.”

Interactive features include “Simon” where you can push buttons to manipulate the colors of “Shimmering Solstice” at Old Westbury Gardens © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

The formal Rose Garden and Walled Garden bloom with beautiful light and twinkle in lively rhythmic patterns, beautiful paths lead you through to the South Lawn and Allée.  Giant dandelions line the edge of the pond and a  Christmas tree made entirely of lit globes decorates the front of Westbury House.

Lightswitch’s assignment for Old Westbury Gardens’ “Shimmering Solstice” was to “truly embrace the gardens” and use the gardens and water features and architectural elements to stunning effect © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

There are interactive features as well, such as a “Simon” set up where you push buttons to alter the color patterns, a labyrinth and a maze of lights, and immersive features, where you walk amid the lights, even a “Ghost Walk”.

Old Westbury Gardens’ first-ever “Shimmering Solstice” is enchanting © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

The grand finale is a sound and light show celebrating the seasons and holidays, in which the mansion itself is the canvas with musical accompaniment including Vivaldi’s “Four Seasons” and classical holiday music.

A field of lights like tall grass leading to Westbury House, the Phipps mansion © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

It is beautifully spaced and there are paths geared for strollers and wheelchairs. In all, you walk about a mile and visit at your own pace (typically 60-75 minutes to really enjoy).

The grand finale to Old Westbury Gardens’ “Shimmering Solstice” is a sound-and-light show using the mansion as a canvas © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

“We are excited to offer this brand-new experience for our visitors to enjoy,” said Nancy Costopulos, President and CEO of Old Westbury Gardens. “This walk-through lightshow has been designed specifically for Old Westbury Gardens and offers a one-of-a-kind experience that we intend to become a new annual holiday tradition. We are also thrilled to have Catholic Health as our presenting sponsor for this inaugural event. Their commitment to the communities they serve mirrors our own, and we welcome their support as we bring this spectacular event to Long Island.”

A selection of hot foods, hot and cold beverages and snacks is available in a tent.

The grand finale to Old Westbury Gardens’ “Shimmering Solstice” is a sound-and-light show using the mansion as a canvas © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

This is the first season, but there are already plans to expand in future years, said Paul Hunchak, Director of Visitor Services, Programs and Services. “We were looking for things to do in this season. We always wanted outdoor light show.”

The grand finale to Old Westbury Gardens’ “Shimmering Solstice” is a sound-and-light show using the mansion as a canvas © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

The event is organized to be COVID19-safe – tickets must be purchased in advance online and they space admissions.

The grand finale to Old Westbury Gardens’ “Shimmering Solstice” is a sound-and-light show using the mansion as a canvas © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Tickets for Shimmering Soltice must be purchased online in advance; priced by peak and off peak, from $29.95-32.95/adult, $16.95-17.95/child. Senior Discounts on Off-Peak Mondays (ages 62+) $24.95; an Any time/Any Day Experience is $75. (closed Dec. 24-25, Jan. 4); Entry times are every 15 minutes, from 5:30-9:30 pm. (last entry is at 9:30 pm – great for a date!). Purchase at https://shimmeringsolstice.com/.

Lightswitch’s assignment for Old Westbury Gardens’ “Shimmering Solstice” was to “truly embrace the gardens” and use the gardens and water features and architectural elements to stunning effect © Karen Rubin/goingplacesfarandnear.com

Old Westbury Gardens, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, is the former home of John S. Phipps, his wife, Margarita Grace Phipps and their four children. Completed in 1906 by the English artist and designer, George A. Crawley, the magnificent Charles II-style mansion is nestled amid 200 acres of formal gardens, landscaped grounds, woodlands, ponds and lakes. Westbury House is furnished with fine English antiques and decorative arts from the more than 50 years of the family’s residence.

John S. Phipps was the son of Henry Phipps, Jr., an American entrepreneur and a partner with Andrew Carnegie (a childhood friend of Henry’s) in the Carnegie Steel Company. Henry was also a successful real estate investor (he invested heavily in Cape Cod and Palm Beach and Fort Lauderdale, Florida; his mansion in Lake Success has become the Great Neck Public Schools administration building and the grounds the South schools campus). After selling his stock in Carnegie Steel, Henry devoted time and money to philanthropic works.

After her parents, Margarita and John S. Phipps, passed away, their daughter Peggie inherited the Old Westbury estate and, in 1959, formed a nonprofit charity to open the grounds to the public to honor the memory of her mother and share the beauty of the 216 acres of gardens, fields and woodlands.

Visitors today experience the grounds and gardens, which remain largely untouched from the Phipps era, with many English-style perennials and biennials preserved. There are rare plant species—including foxgloves, delphiniums – not usually found in public gardens. These plants have been well-maintained for decades by the dedicated horticulture staff, which grow many of the herbaceous plant material right on-site in the private greenhouse, preserving the original vision of John S. Phipps’ and George Crawley.

You can take virtual tours of the mansion (www.oldwestburygardens.org/tourthehouse) and the gardens (www.oldwestburygardens.org/tourthegardens).

Old Westbury Gardens, 71 Old Westbury Road, Old Westbury, NY, 11568, oldwestburygardens.org.

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