It’s Thanksgiving Night: Strike Up the (Marching) Band

Majestic Marching KightsMissed New York’s Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade? Haven’t had your fill yet? Can’t get enough of marching bands?
You’re in luck—the 77-piece Majestic Marching Knights Band from Ballou Senior High School in Washington, DC, will finish up their stint in the parade and then appear tonight at the David Rubenstein Atrium at Lincoln Center. Part of the Target Free Thursdays series, the band, under the direction of Darrell Watson, will appear at 8:30 PM (Doors open at 7 PM.)
The Atrium, a new public space at Lincoln Center, is located on Broadway between 62nd and 63rd Streets.) Upcoming concerts (all are free) include flutists Aaron White and Shawn Wyckoff (Dec. 3); the ZigZag Quartet (piano, guitar, bass, percussion; Dec. 10); and the Ted Rosenthal Trio (piano; bass, drums; Dec. 24). Performers are culled from community arts organizations, Lincoln Center’s resident organizations, and events programmed by the director of Public Programming there.
The band has performed at The White House and in the Tournament of Roses Parade, and has appeared on “Good Morning, America,” as well as at a rally for Hillary Clinton. They were also featured in the documentary “Ballou,” which shows viewers the enormous odds the band members and the band itself have overcome.
Expect lots of loud, celebratory, rousing music–perfect to get you geared up for Black Friday.

Forget the Turkey: It’s the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade

Macy's Thanksgiving Day ParadeSo Thanksgiving is finally here (OK, tomorrow): The turkey, the stuffing, the fight with Cousin Bert over which football game to watch. But all that plays second fiddle to the real star–New York’s Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.
The big news this year is that the parade route has changed—No longer just on Broadway and Central Park West, the parade will begin at its usual spot—77th street and Central Park West–but will now meander down Central Park South and turn south on Seventh Avenue. From there, it will turn east on 42nd Street, mosey on to the Avenue of the Americas, and proceed down to 34th Street and 7th Avenue.
The parade starts at 9 am, and both parade familiars and those new to it will have to scramble to find the best viewing spots–since the route is new, it’s hard to say where those will be. Our advice: Go early (more than 3 million spectators are expected to show up); have fortitude; bring snacks. (You can call the parade hotline for info at 212 494-4495). What to look for? How about the first new Santa float in almost 50 years? And don’t forget favorites like the Kermit the Frog and Spider Man balloons, as well as countless marching bands, clowns, and celebrity entertainers.
For an insider’s view, try wandering over to the balloon inflation site later today, around 77th Street and Central Park West. But Caveat Balloon Gawker: As the evening wears on, only those with invitations are generally permitted onto the street. You can still get a good view from a little further away, however, and it’s a quintessential New York experience to say you were part of it.

On the Move? Make Sure That Pedicab is Licensed

A Pedicab in New YorkNew Yorkers have many ways to traverse the city, from subway to cab to bus to their own two feet–but one of the newest ways is someone’s else’s–feet that is.
You’ve probably seen the person-drawn cabs hanging out at tourist sports like museums, near Central Park, even on Fifth Avenue. But until recently, many of the drivers (?) runners? pullers? were unlicensed. This past weekend was the deadline for them to apply for medallions, which indicate that the pedicabs have been inspected and have rate cards posted. In addition, the licenses mean that they’ve passed safety inspections on tail and headlights, seat belts and brakes. City laws also require pedicabs to have insurance that covers both riders and drivers.
Estimates indicate that there are thousands of pedicabs on the road; drivers had a 60-day period in which to complete the applications for licenses.
More than 150 businesses applied for close to 850 licenses; prior to last Friday, 943 pedicabs were registered. More than 300 have applied for licenses.
While the pedicab industry probably began as early as 1995 down in the East Village, it really took off in the last few years. Many pedicab drivers have actually asked for the regulations, since so many unregistered cabs have flooded the streets in recent years. A number of people view them as a nuisance, while others admire the easy-going attitude that characterizes this unorthodox form of transportation.
Our advice? If you do choose to travel under someone else’s steam, make sure they have a license—and a lot of stamina.

Free Thursday Performances At New Lincoln Center Atrium

Lincoln Center AtriumLincoln Center’s David Rubinstein Atrium, newly opened on Broadway between 62nd and 63rd Streets, will be the site for a new free performance series known as Target Free Thursdays. The series, which will take place each Thursday evening at 8:30pm, kicked off on November 19 with Sexteto Rodriguez and the Cuban-Jewish All Stars and in the future will feature a wide variety of performers in many genres of music and the performing arts (including international acts and performers from Lincoln Center’s resident companies). After it has its official opening in December, the Atrium will not only be a place to see performances, but to buy discounted tickets for them, as this will be where Lincoln Center has its own brand new answer to the popular TKTS booth in midtown. In addition, the Atrium will sport a huge media wall, free wi-fi and free public seating, a cafe, and vertical gardens.

Robin Williams Arrives At Town Hall

Earlier this year, comedian and actor Robin Williams was scheduled to bring his touring one-man show Weapons of Self-Destruction to Broadway in a limited engagement at the Neil Simon Theatre. However, a health scare caused Williams to cancel the tour. Healthy again and ready to make audiences laugh now, Robin Williams is starting the limited run of Weapons of Self-Destruction in New York City tonight. The re-scheduled engagement is not actually on Broadway (the Neil Simon is currently occupied by the Ragtime revival), but it is close – right in the heart of midtown, at Town Hall on West 43rd Street. Robin Williams: Weapons of Self-Destruction will play at Town Hall November 23-25, November 30, and December 1-3.

Robin Williams’ One-Man Show Arrives At Town Hall

Robin WilliamsEarlier this year, comedian and actor Robin Williams was scheduled to bring his touring one-man show Weapons of Self-Destruction to Broadway in a limited engagement at the Neil Simon Theatre. However, a health scare caused Williams to cancel the tour. Healthy again and ready to make audiences laugh now, Robin Williams is starting the limited run of Weapons of Self-Destruction in New York City tonight. The re-scheduled engagement is not actually on Broadway (the Neil Simon is currently occupied by the Ragtime revival), but it is close – right in the heart of midtown, at Town Hall on West 43rd Street. Robin Williams: Weapons of Self-Destruction will play at Town Hall November 23-25, November 30, and December 1-3.

A Holiday Under the Stars–But This One Also Offers Retail

Time Warner CenterThe stars are often hard to see in New York City–unless you stop by the Time Warner Center one evening between now and January 3.
The “Holiday Under the Stars” show features 14-foot glass Moravian stars hanging from the 150-foot-high ceiling. Each star weighs approximately 1,000 pounds. (Don’t think about that part too much.)
The stars are so enormous they can easily be seen from outside. Every night at 5:00 pm (something to keep you homeward-bound commuters going) the stars are front and center in a holiday show featuring displays of light and color set to holiday music. Each number, created by a 12-piece orchestra, has its own choreographed light display; you can stand there entranced until midnight, if you wish, when the display ends for the night.
Each star can create literally millions of color combinations; the show itself is made up of 8,500 LEDs (light-emitting diodes; an electronic light source); 11,000 fiber optics; and 156 strobe lights.
Now in its fourth year, the show takes place in what is known as “The Great Room,” the enormous public space at the entrance to the Time Warner Center.
For the uninitiated, high-end shops and restaurants ranging from Coach leather goods to Dean & Deluca foods to Thomas Keller’s Per Se Restaurant inhabit the space.
So it has to be asked: Winter wonderland or thinly disguised prod to shop?
Either way, it’s certainly festive.

Church, Club, Marketplace: The Many Lives of the Limelight

New York's Limelight ClubThat’s the thing about New York department: First an Episcopal Church; then an infamous nightclub; next a retail marketplace: Where else but New York City could such a reinvention take place?
The reinvention in this case belongs to what was originally the Episcopal Church of the Holy Communion, a historic 19th century church. Located at West 20th Street and Avenue of the Americas in Chelsea, the church was later, in what can only be termed severe irony, converted to the Limelight Club, a nightspot, in 1983. Known primarily for drug-infused parties, the club was also associated with Michael Alig, the party promoter who was convicted of murdering a club regular; the event became the basis for the film “Party Monster.”
In a sign of the economic times, the building is now set to become a marketplace for small business owners, especially those who may be having trouble getting the finances to open a full store. Cupcake Stop, for example, which has been doing business out of a truck, has already signed on. About 20 tenants in total have committed to taking on space, including Mari’s New York Brownies; the B.R. Cohen Winery; and J. Sisters Beauty Salon.
The project (not surprisingly, given its history) has been fraught with building issues, from work being done without a permit to a denial of approval to make certain exterior changes.
The complex is now slated to open in March. (It was pushed ahead from this month.)
Will it proceed on schedule?
Well, if history provides a lesson, it’s that the building may have several more lives ahead of it, in any case.

Remember Records and 45s? The Record and CD Show Has Them All

New York City CD and Record ShowNot quite ready to be assaulted with the Christmas trees and dancing elves that have proliferated across New York? Looking for something a little more gritty and nostalgic? Wondering in the back of your mind what to get your third-cousin-once-removed for the holidays?
Wonder no more. (Hey, wasn’t he the one who liked hard-to-find Jimi Hendrix recordings?)
Today is The New York City Record & CD Show (10 am-4 pm; Holiday Inn New York City; 440 West 57th Street; 973-209-6067), the answer to your what-to-do-today-that’s-slightly-hipsterish-and-cool dilemma.
It’s one of those just-under-the-radar events that make New York like a giant treasure trove–you just have to know where to look.
(The show is open to the public, but there’s a $6 admission fee.)
Dealers from many northeastern and mid-Atlantic states will be attending; merchandise will include (take a breath) records, CDs, DVDs, 45s (remember those?) singles, posters, t-shirts and more. (What more is there?)
Out-of-print and rare tracks will be available (otherwise, what’s the point, really?) and music from rock to jazz to soul to new age to classical will all be included.
So while everyone else is knocking down his or her neighbor at some one-day sale at a headache-inducing mega store, you can slip into midtown and rest secure in the knowledge that you’re hip–and you’ve gotten your cousin something he’ll really appreciate.

Big Apple Circus

Save Up to $30 on Big Apple Circus Tickets CODE IS: NYTIX10
Big Apple Circus Discount Ticket Code in New York City

Save $30 on tickets to select performances
These prices apply to performances through January 18, 2010
and are available on select orchestra and front mezzanine seats.

CODE IS: NYTIX10

Tickets available by clicking HERE or calling 888-541-3750 and using code NYTIX10

Offer good on select seat locations. Must present copy of webpage flyer or email blast to receive discount at the box office. Performance schedule subject to change. Offer is subject to availability; not valid on prior purchases; cannot be combined with other discounts or promotions. This offer can be revoked at any time. Discount amount varies. Limit 8 tickets per order. No refunds or exchanges. Telephone and Internet orders are subject to standard service fees.

Discount Broadway Ticket Code supplied by http://www.nytix.com/