GrowNYC Presents Stop ‘N’ Swap


GrowNYC will host upcoming Stop ‘N’ Swap events at two Staten Island locations.

The first stop/swap event will take place on September 19th from 10am – 2pm at the Sea View Hospital Community Service Building located at 460 Brielle Avenue.

You are invited to bring clean, reusable, portable items such as clothing, house wares, games, books, & toys that you no longer need, and take home something new-to-you.You don’t have to bring something to take something. No furniture or large items, please. Everything is free!

On September 12th from 10am – 2pm, Staten Island’s GrowNYC Greenmarkets will host simultaneous Book Swaps. You are invited to bring books to give away, and to find books that are new to you. You don’t have to bring books to take books and Everything is free!

The Book Swaps will take place at the St. George Greenmarket (St. Marks Place and Hyatt Street) and at the Staten Island Mall Greenmarket.

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All Aboard the Lighthouse Boat Tour!

Lighthouse-Boat-Tour-2Join the National Lighthouse Museum in their continuing series of Lighthouse Boat Tours on Saturday, September 12, 2015 from 11 am to 2 pm.

The tour will depart from Staten Island Home Port, 355 Front Street, Staten Island, NY for a cruise up the East River, passing through Hell’s Gate to Long Island Sound. The cruise will go as far as Execution Rocks Lighthouse and learn of its gruesome history. The Stepping Stones Light is not to be missed. This is a memorable three hour cruise with knowledgeable presenters sharing little known facts about the lighthouses we’ll see.

Bring your own snacks or purchase refreshments on board. Rain or Shine Cost: Adults $60.00 Seniors $50.00 children $40.00

To purchase tickets:  or by calling 718-390-0400

Tickets can be purchased at the Lighthouse Museum site – 200 Promenade @ Lighthouse Point (behind St. George Post Office) Staten Island, NY 10301

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Business Spotlight: Cookie Jar

2015-08-03_13-44-08The Cake Chef Cookie Jar is located at 1226 Forest Avenue in Staten Island’s North ShoreThe shop currently has 150 plus different cookies on a daily basis. Each one different from the rest! They also offer eight different delicious varieties of cupcakes.

This is not your typical area bakery that makes one cookie recipe and then uses different color sprinkles and different shapes to add variety. Each recipe is developed and modified by the Master Baker Cake chef and tweaked to perfection or at the very least a very satisfying bite.

Business Motto: After all…if it ain’t worth the calories…Why would you eat it????

Open 7 days a week.  Open ALL holidays! Extended holiday hours.

They also ship all over the globe. Check out the store online at

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Explore Staten Island’s Rapidly Changing North Shore

Rendering of URL Staten Island (Photo: Concrete)

Rendering of URL Staten Island (Photo: Concrete) reports on new development on Staten Island’s North Shore. 

“Staten Island has a tough time being cool,” said Kamillah Hanks, founder of the Historic Tappen Park Community Partnership, as she spoke to a tour group about the North Shore neighborhood of Stapleton. It’s true: New York’s forgotten borough, often seen as isolated due to its inaccessibility by bridge or Subway line from Manhattan, doesn’t have the same charm or youthful energy that is pervasive in Brooklyn and parts of Queens now. Recently, developers have been aiming to change this perception while also taking advantage of vacant spaces on the island’s North Shore, with notable—and projects including the New York Wheel, Empire Outlets, Lighthouse Point, and URL Staten Island. This past weekend, Curbed took a tour, hosted by Untapped Cities and Munro Johnson, vice president of Staten Island development projects for the New York City Economic Development Corporation, of some of the key sites and newest ventures to hit the island as businesses and residents alike descend on the area after being priced out of other boroughs and neighborhoods.

The tour began mere steps away from the Stapleton Staten Island Railway Station at URL Staten Island (short for “Urban Ready Life,” a rental community developed by Ironstate Development that is part of the larger community known as the New Stapleton Waterfront. Greg Russo from Ironstate explained that the 900-unit development, which is slated to open its first phase by the end of this year, is targeting apartment hunters in their 20s or 30s, as the island has experienced an exodus of young people in recent years. The project, which was implemented by the EDC’s Capital Program, will also foster community life with a public plaza, a cafe, and 30,000 square feet of ground-floor retail space. Outside of the buildings, the developer hopes to work with the borough to upgrade and create more streets connecting the shore area with the inner neighborhood, as the areas feel very distinct from one another at the moment.


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Visit Clay Pit Ponds This Summer!


Clay Pit Ponds State Park Preserve Provides Great Summer Programs for Everyone

Clay Pit Ponds State Park Preserve is a 260-acre natural area near the southwest shore of Staten Island. Once the site of clay-mining, the Preserve contains a variety of unique habitats such as wetlands, fields, sandy barrens, spring-fed streams and woodlands. As a terminal point for some northern and southern species, this area is rich with plant and animal life. Clay Pit Ponds is New York City’s first State Park Preserve. It is managed to retain the unique ecology of the area. The Preserve is an Audubon Bird Conservation Area and is home to the historic Gericke Farm.

The Interpretive Center at Clay Pit Ponds State Park Preserve strives to provide educational and recreational programs for people of all ages.

62384d3b-bbdb-42d6-8d22-b0f083c0da14The Interpretive Center also offers in-house and outreach programs for schools, summer camps, and other groups throughout the year. These programs are designed to fit your curriculum needs and to enhance your visit to our state parks. All programs are FREE of charge unless otherwise noted. Children must be accompanied by an adult. Check out the schedule of Summer Programs!

Enjoy hiking on our designated foot trails. Bring your own horse and ride our 5 miles of horse trails. All trails are open from dawn until dusk. Wildlife has free run of the Preserve. This is their home and you are their guests. Visitors must please follow Preserve rules.

Clay Pit Ponds State Park Preserve is located at 2351 Veterans Road West, Staten Island, NY 10309

The Park is open Tuesday–Saturday 8:30 am to 5 pm. Gates are locked at 5 pm

About Clay Pit Ponds State Park Preserve

Clay Pit Ponds State Park Preserve is a 265-acre nature preserve near the southwest shore of Staten Island. It contains a variety of unique habitats, such as wetlands, ponds, sand barrens, spring-fed streams and woodlands. The preserve is managed to retain its unique ecology and to provide educational and recreational opportunities for people of all ages. Evidences of the Leni Lenape Indians, European settlers and the Free Blacks of Sandy Ground provide a rich cultural history. Educational programs, such as nature walks, pond ecology, birdwatching and tree and flower identification, are offered, as are many activities geared to school children. School and group programs are also welcome by advance registration. In addition, visitors may picnic or hike on designated trails. Horseback riding is also permitted on over 5 miles of bridle paths. Please note that horses are not available to rent.

The Interpretive Center at Clay Pit Ponds is now open to the public. This fully accessible building features interpretive displays of the history of the park and of its natural elements. The park’s educational and community programs will take place in the interpretive center located at 2351 Veteran’s Road West Staten Island, NY 10309 Phone: (718) 605-3970 or visit their website.

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What Do You Wish?

A wish is a desire connected to the heart and mind, conscious and unconscious. There is great power in a wish; it begins an energy movement. Thinking, writing, revealing a wish helps one to understand one’s self more and prioritize actions. Related to hope, wishes become a constant reminder of how life can be better.



On July 16th, Culture Lounge’s new exhibit WISH, created by Day De Dada and organized by Gena Mimozo, will ask visitors to the gallery space at the St. George Terminal, “What do you wish?”   

The exhibition will feature wish themed mail art sent in from around the world, short videos and the Whispering Wishes sound installation.Culture Lounge visitors will have the opportunity to make their own wishes, write a wish on a cloth strip and tie it on the fence installation, create mail art wishes to send off to someone or make a wish on the spot with some guidance from The Wish Sisters.

The Wish Sisters – Viv de Dada, Jennifer Weigel, Mary Campbell, Barbara Lubliner, Margaret Chase, Lydia Grey, and Milenka Berengolc –  will collect wishes at various times throughout the exhibition.

Opening Reception (SI Arts members only)
Date: Thursday July 16
Time: 7pm
Become a Staten Island Arts member today and you’ll get a special invite to the Opening Reception of “WISH”, where you’ll be able to rub elbows with fellow members and meet the artists. Light refreshments will be provided. Become a member here.

Wish Sister Performance

Date: Saturday July 18
Time: 12pm – 4pm

The Wish Sisters will collect wishes from people using traditional and non-traditional methods throughout the run of the exhibition. Viv de Dada catches whispered secrets and carefully transfers them into a large bottle with a crystal stopper. Jennifer Weigel has people attach wishes to pennies that participants can take with them or leave for someone else to find, as a means of voicing desires.

Wish Sister Performance

Date: Saturday August 8
Time: 12pm – 4pm

The Wish Sisters will collect wishes from people using traditional and non-traditional methods throughout the run of the exhibition. Mary Campbell gives people the chance to test their luck with the old ritual of breaking a wishbone. Barbara Lubliner offers wishing advice and super charges wishes with the power of the elements before collecting them in a golden box.

Staten Island OutLOUD presents “Be Careful What You Wish For?”

Date: Saturday August 8
Time: 2pm

Staten Island OutLOUD presents a reading – and perhaps a warning – about the wishes we make. What do you wish for? Think carefully before you answer that question! Join the Facebook event!

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NYC Tourism Campaign Highlights Staten Island Neighborhoods


Marty Markowitz of NYC and Company sits down with NY1‘s Anthony Pascale to discuss the organization’s latest tourism initiative which highlights two Staten Island neighborhoods. View Video!

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Developer to add 3 million sf of warehouse space to Staten Island site

via Rich Bockman/The Real Deal

Development site on Staten Island’s western shore (credit: Langan)

The owner of the city’s largest privately-held industrial site, where Brooklyn Brewery will build a new headquarters on Staten Island, is planning to add 3 million square feet of warehouse space to the project on the borough’s western shore.

Staten Island Marine Development, which owns more than 670 acres bisected by the freight rail lines connecting the borough to the national rail system, plans to redevelop half of the site in two phases through 2020. The project would deliver 3.1 million square feet of warehouse space. The developer declined to comment, but Brooklyn Brewery CEO Eric Ottaway said his company will build a 440,000-square-foot brew house with room for a 300-seat indoor restaurant, a beer garden and an events space. The brewers also decided to add a retail component for visitors.

“We originally had not planned retail, but realized people would want to come see the facility so we’d better add a visitor center,” Ottaway wrote in an email.

Meanwhile, the owners of the brewery’s current home at 79 North 11th Street in Williamsburg have put the property on the market. It’s expected to sell for at least $50 million, as previously reported.

The proposal is just one project shaking things up on Staten Island. Further north, mega projects like the New York Wheel, Empire Outlets and the 900-unit rental project planned by Ironstate Development promise to transform the borough’s North Shore.


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The View from Up Here!

New York Wheel-thumb

By the time Staten Island’s giant observation wheel finally opens in 2017, it may not be the tallest in the world. But right now, its planned 625-foot height tops all other Ferris wheels, and its views, unsurprisingly, have been touted as the main attraction. (Along with the promise the project, along with its neighboring outlet mall, holds for revitalizing St. George, the area by the Staten Island Ferry Terminal and the Staten Island Yankees’ stadium.) While we await the wheel itself, enterprising Staten Island resident Scott Grella sent a drone up from the site to scope out the views during a particularly lovely sunset. First, the rest of the city, while beautiful, looks mighty tiny and far away. Second, just remember that because of FAA regulations, the drone couldn’t fly all the way up the wheel’s highest point. Third, seeing these views when the wheel is actually built will be costly as heck: $25, $35, and $45 depending on when you go, with the ticket price escalating as the day turns into night.

Check out the drone video on

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Run to get PEARL today!

NJ couple Guy and Dana Patton’s self-financed micro-budget action movie PEARL has been acquired by California distribution company Indican Pictures, got its international release last Tuesday. And one of it’s stars is Staten Island’s own George Morafetis!

2015-06-08_14-24-24In Pearl the lone survivor of a horrific home invasion mounts a violent campaign of vigilante justice. It’s a genre picture in the style of Death Wish, but with a female lead, Dana Patton. The award-winning movie screened at numerous film festivals before catching the eye of Cut Entertainment Group‘s Jeff Cooper, who licensed the film.

Indican Pictures, distributor of indie favorite Boondock Saints. The movie will be available on DVD and on demand through iTunes, Amazon and on XBox streaming.

View the trailer and read a review at Write a review at Rotten Tomatoes

About Pearl

Jersey City couple Guy and Dana Patton have done stage productions, web and festival comedic shorts, and a few independent television pilots. Both have been on the sets of features as extras or filled in as crew for small independent productions done by friends. They had always talked about making their own feature, and they had a small germ of an idea. And so Pearl was born.

Shot locally in Jersey City and Hoboken, New Jersey, the film features locations such as Grace Church, Canco Lofts, and DCs Tavern.

Pearl debuted last year at Golden Door International Film Festival in Jersey City where it won “Best Local Feature”. The debut took place at the Landmark Lowes Jersey Theatre.

Pearl went on to screen in Manhattan at Anthology Film ArchivesThe YOFI Festival, and at several other venues.

Pearl represented Jersey City on the West Coast at the 10th Annual Action on Film Fest in Monrovia, California in August 2014

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