LINKS - Lincoln Square E-News
December 2011

in this issue
  • Winter's Eve Round-Up
  • New York Cares Coat Drive Continues until December 31
  • Holiday Catering in Lincoln Square
  • Your Guide to Holiday Shopping in Lincoln Square
  • What's Growing Now: Ornamental Kale
  • Lincoln Square: Updates from the Street
  • Tips for Keeping Safe this Holiday Season

  • Winter's Eve Round-Up

    Thanks to great weather, great entertainment and a fantastic crowd, this year's Winter's Eve at Lincoln Square was the largest ever-- over 20,000 revelers flocked to Lincoln Square for New York City's largest holiday festival! The night kicked off to an exciting start at the annual Winter's Eve Tree Lighting ceremony at Dante Park. Event-goers eagerly packed the park, spilling out onto Lincoln Center's plaza to watch folk legend Arlo Guthrie and family, WABC-TV's Sade Baderinwa, Former NYC Mayor Edward I. Koch and the Outer Borough Brass Band as they helped to light the tree. Arlo and ten members of the Guthrie family performed some Guthrie favorites along with holiday tunes to the delighted audience- and even treated the crowd to an extended show. The tree itself was dazzling, decorated in handmade ornaments crafted by the women of the Merasi Tribe in Rajasthan India, and donated through a local organization, Folk Arts Rajasthan, in partnership with the American Folk Art Museum. The tree will be on display until early January, so be sure to stop by Dante Park (Broadway and 63rd Street) one evening and enjoy the holiday spirit. Smaller versions of the ornaments are available for sale in the American Folk Art Museum Gift Shop, on Columbus Avenue between 65th and 66th Streets.

    Immediately following the tree lighting, the sidewalks along Broadway came alive from Time Warner Center to 68th Street. Over 40 local retailers and businesses--including banks, small stores, the Apple Store, Century 21, Bed Bath and Beyond, Gracious Home and countless others--opened their doors to the public with live entertainment, shopping specials and holiday cheer. The ever-successful food tastings did not disappoint this year as revelers lined the streets, patiently waiting to sample fare from 32 of Lincoln Square's finest restaurants and eateries, including small take out shops, bakeries, and individually owned eateries, all outdoors under beautifully decorated individual tents. Our not-for-profits opened their doors, too, offering performances, studio tours, museum visits, craft making and holiday cheer. Finally, Time Warner Center was hopping with activity on three levels, including performances by the Broadway musical Sister Act, Big Apple Circus, Jazz at Lincoln Center, and student performers.

    We are tremendously grateful to our sponsors and partners, who help make this event a success, year after year. For video and photos of the event, please check our flickr and YouTube pages. See you at Winter's Eve 2012!

    New York Cares Coat Drive Continues until December 31

    Although Winter's Eve is over, the New York Cares Coat Drive continues until Saturday, December 31. Our Winter's Eve charitable partner, New York Cares, is aiming to collect 100,000 coats this year to help the 18.7 percent of New York City families in need.

    For the remainder of the month, coats can be dropped off at three locations in Lincoln Square: the American Bible Society at Broadway and 61st Street; the West Side YMCA at 63rd Street between Broadway and Central Park West; and YogaWorks at 37 West 65th Street, between Columbus Avenue and Central Park West.

    For more information and other locations, please click here.

    Holiday Catering in Lincoln Square

    Too busy to cook for the holidays? Not a chef, but still throwing a party? No need to worry-- Lincoln Square is chock full of eateries that will fulfill all your holiday catering needs. Fool your guests by catering a special holiday feast from one of the area's finest restaurants:

    If you're looking for something extravagant, Feast & Fetes by Daniel Boulud and Jean-Christophe Le Picart is your answer. Considered one of the finest catering businesses in the field, Feast & Fetes offers the themed menus of Boulud Sud, the charcuterie of Bar Boulud and more of Daniel Boulud's signature dishes. Dazzle your guests by bringing the world-renowned Boulud taste straight to your dining room table.

    Great Performances, a New York City staple, is well versed in party planning and catering- and they are behind the fabulous food at Dizzy's Club Coca-Cola. Strong advocates for local foods, Great Performances often uses seasonal produce pulled from their very own organic Katchkie Farm in the Hudson Valley. They also maintain close relationships with neighboring farms, purchasing cheese, livestock and other specialty items- all while promoting the importance of local food.

    Benchmarc Events by Marc Murphy-the brains behind Landmarc Restaurant-- offer a variety of meal options, ranging from sit-down to buffet to cocktail selections. If you'd like to spice up your party, they can even host wine classes and tastings for your guests!

    Arpeggio catering, located at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts, works closely with their clients to custom design a memorable and elaborate meal- whether your event is an intimate gathering or a celebration for hundreds.

    For less elaborate dishes, Indie Food & Wine and 'wichcraft both offer a fresh selection of salads, sandwiches, cured meats and sides. Add European flair with signature baguettes and fine cheeses from Le Pain Quotidien's holiday catering menu.

    For another menu with a french influence, take a look at Bouchon Bakery's(pictured) gourmet sandwiches, quiches, salads and more. And if you'd like to skip the main course and head straight to dessert, choose from a menu of Bouchon's pastries- with enough advance time, you can speak to Bouchon's world-class pastry chefs and design a custom cake for your guests.

    For a slightly less traditional holiday meal, try the catering at Rosa Mexicano, which offers an extensive menu of gourmet Mexican foods at reasonable prices, offering special prices for groups as small as 10 people. And don't forget to try their signature margaritas, or even rent the margarita machine for a guaranteed good time!

    For a more extensive list of Lincoln Square restaurants, please click here. If you're interested in renting a venue for your party, view our comprehensive list of available Lincoln Square venues here.

    Your Guide to Holiday Shopping in Lincoln Square

    The city is decked out, the weather is growing cold, the streets are bustling, all of which means it's gift-buying time. Make your holiday shopping a low-stress experience in Lincoln Square!

    Now in its seventh year, the Columbus Circle Holiday Market is one of the largest and most elegant of its kind in the city. Featuring over 100 vendors, shoppers can stroll through the European-style booths and pick up a vast array of crafts, gourmet foods, apparel and other fine goods from now until Saturday, December 24 at Merchant's Gate (Columbus Circle).

    When you tire of the cold, cross the street to peruse the Shops at Columbus Circle in Time Warner Center. The Shops truly light up during the holidays, and this year is no exception-with four new stores and dozens more luxurious retail shops, there's plenty available to holiday shoppers. While shopping, be sure to pause and gaze up at the 14 foot stars hanging from the ceiling of the Great Room. Time Warner Center's "Holiday Under the Stars" light show features exclusive choreographed music by jazz great Wynton Marsalis and his all-star band. The star shows run thru December 26, 2011, and begin at 5pm daily, every half hour.

    Wander north towards the American Folk Art Museum Gift Shop, where you can pick up a variety of unique crafts, including smaller versions of the handmade ornaments featured on the Lincoln Square tree. At Broadway and 69th Street, stop by Himalayan Crafts, a one-of-a-kind boutique specializing in Himalayan handicrafts, jewelry and antique African trading beads since 1975. These two shops will offer you affordable and original gifts you won't find elsewhere.

    Neighborhood newcomer Citibank (1900 Broadway at 63rd Street) celebrates the season with free gift wrapping! Stop by Citibank on Friday, December 23, and get your gifts wrapped for free, while enjoying some complimentary holiday treats. For more information, call 212.471.9755.

    It's easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of city life - and it's easy to forget to take some time out for yourself. Kick back your heels and relax this holiday season by treating yourself to a treatment at the Royal Sphatika Salon, located right near Columbus Circle. Choose from a variety of different packages, ranging from the Sphatika "Signature Experience," to the "Oxygen Facial Experience," as well as custom, 100% natural face and body peels. If you're looking for a well-rounded spiritual healing experience, Sphatika offers once-a-month special packages, including a twenty minute spa treatment. You can also give the gift of relaxation to your stressed-out loved ones this year. Mention the Lincoln Square BID and receive a free gift with purchase!

    Add a personal touch to any iPad or iPod with free engraving from Apple. This holiday special applies to any order before December 19! To make your gift even more special, you can select to wrap your order in Apple's custom gift wrap.

    What's Growing Now: Ornamental Kale

    Glorious flower displays fill our district's Broadway Malls, two parks and our many planters in the warmer seasons, but that doesn't mean that our neighborhood gardens go completely dormant in the winter. In addition to ivy and numerous shrubs, right now you'll find beautiful heads of deep purple ornamental kale on display in many of the area's planters and urns. This plant has been popular in gardens since after the 17th century and first appeared in seed catalogs in the United States in the 1930's. A member of the cabbage family, ornamental kale doesn't produce a head, but rather a tight "rosette" of leaves.*

    The Lincoln Square BID runs an intensive horticultural program in the ten Broadway Malls (the medians on Broadway) and the two small parks in our district-Richard Tucker at Broadway and 66th Street and Dante at Broadway and 63rd Street. Spring through fall, seasonal blooms and shrubs in our Malls, parks, and 37 planters throughout the district flourish under our care. For more information on our beautification program, including how to support our greening efforts, please click here or call us at 212.581.3774.

    *Source: University of Arkansas' Division of Agriculture, Cooperative Extension Service

    Lincoln Square: Updates from the Street

    The Department of Transportation and the Lincoln Square BID are constantly working towards making the Lincoln Square streets as safe and accessible as possible to pedestrians. You may have noticed the brand-new countdown crosswalk signs located throughout the district, which were recently installed by DOT. These signs increase awareness and allow pedestrians to cross Broadway safely. In addition, most of the avenues and side streets throughout the district have also been repaved, allowing motor vehicles to navigate safely.

    Mayor Bloomberg recently signed legislation regarding major transportation projects installed by the Department of Transportation. The first, Intro. 626-A, requires DOT to notify the Police and Fire Departments, as well as the Department of Small Business Services and the Mayor's Office for People with Disabilities, before implementing a major transportation project, improving coordination between City agencies. The second, Intro. 671-A, requires the Department of Transportation to post on its web site data relating to traffic and safety in any area before and after a major transportation project has been installed. Both bills will ensure that New Yorkers have access to information regarding any major transportation projects in their areas. These bills will allow us to stay on top of proposed changes in the district, and will help us to better provide you with up-to-date and accurate information.

    We have just learned that the MTA New York City Transit will introduce FasTrack in 2012, a new approach to performing subway maintenance, involving overnight shutdowns. From Monday to Thursday nights, 10:00pm- 5:00am, closure of line segments will occur, allowing a productive window for maintenance. FasTrack will kick off on the Lexington Avenue line from Monday, January 9 to Thursday, January 13, 2012. More updates will come in the January issue of our LINKs.

    Finally, please take note of the bus stop locations on Amsterdam Avenue, due to construction: 1. Northeast corner at 61st Street, 2. Northeast corner at 65th Street, 3. Northeast corner at 67th Street, 4. Northeast corner at 69th Street.

    Tips for Keeping Safe this Holiday Season

    Lincoln Square is fantastic place to be during the holidays, but the increase in crowds can also mean an increase in theft. It's important that you remain alert and aware during the holiday season-check out these handy tips from the New York City Department of Consumer Affairs and the NYPD, and learn how to shop smart and protect yourself this holiday season- and the rest of the year.

    Department of Consumer Affairs Safe Shopping

    NYPD Crime Prevention Holiday Safety Tips

    Happy holidays and a joyful New Year from all of us at the Lincoln Square Business Improvement District!

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