The above photo of the fountain in Washington Square Park in Greenwich Village was taken mid-afternoon this past weekend when New York City temperatures reached around 100 degrees which, combined with high humidity levels, made for unbearably hot weather. Hence why many jumped into the fountain to cool off and obtain some respite from the NYC weather that this week has leveled out and returned to a relatively cooler state with temps hovering around 80 degrees today and humidity at only about 50%. This is outdoor weather for sure and NYC in the summertime offers an abundance of things to do out in the street, in the parks, and by and on the water. This New York State of Mind Amoeblog #41 will take a look at some of these events and happenings, including one of the many great boat parties that take place off Manhattan. On any given summer evening/night along the Hudson waterfront - especially from midtown down to lower Manhattan - you will inevitably hear the strains of electronic, hip-hop, reggae, salsa, rock or other music wafting in over the water from one of the countless boat parties that slowly drift by with booming speakers out on the waterways on weekends and week nights too. These are a great way to catch some music (live bands or DJs) and do some sightseeing at the same time.
This Friday (July 26th) is a recommended dance music boat party that sets sail from midtown on the West Side. It's the WAVs Hudson River Tour with an impressive lineup of DJs including UK producer Switch (formerly of Major Lazer), Grandmaster Flash, Octo Octa, Neon Indian (DJ set), Cousin Cole, and Roxy Cottontail. Advance tickets available here are just $30 to $40 depending on how soon you cop them - not bad for a 4 hour cruise with good music. Boarding starts at 7pm for 8pm departure from 7pm from Pier 81 at West 42nd Street @ 12th Ave.
A truly wonderful, memorable experience for young (6 to 13 year old) fans of the American Museum of Natural History and/or also of the 2006 kids fantasy film Night At The Museum starring Ben Stiller is the ongoing, very limited space A Night At The Museum Sleepovers that happen over the year on an average twice a month on Friday or Saturday nights with advance booking required. These sleepovers, which are priced at $125 to $145 per person, run from 6 pm in the evening through to 9am the following morning and offer an opportunity for kids to explore with flashlights the historic NY museum on Central Park West after it has closed to the public for the day.
Once inside young participants can explore such things as the Age of Dinosaurs, guided views of exhibitions of bats, wolves, birds of prey, and more. There is also a screening of Monarch butterflies on an epic 3,000-mile journey in the IMAX film Flight of the Butterflies. Admission also includes and evening snack and light breakfast in the morning, plus take-home activities. According to reviews it is an unforgettable experience for kids but requires advance booking for the limited amount of spaces - with museum members getting priority tickets. To register your kid you must call in advance to Central Reservations at 212-769-5200, Monday-Friday, 9am to 5 pm. And for further information email firstname.lastname@example.org or visit the museum website here. The American Museum of Natural History is located at Central Park West at 79th Street New York, NY 10024-5192
Record collectors and hip-hop history fans should check out the Afrika Bambaataa Master of Records Open Arhcive, on exhibit for the next couple of weeks through August 10th, at Gavin Brown's Enterprise downtown where the museum owner and the famed DJ/producer (long considered one of hip-hop's godfathers) along with Johan Kugelberg/Boo-Hooray Gallery, the Universal Zulu Nation, and Cornell University Library have been for the past couple of weeks publicly organizing, cataloguing, documenting, and archiving Afrika Bambaataa's legendary, diverse record collection. Those intrigued are invited to stop in to view this collection and hear some music along with other cultural artifacts on display related to Bambaataa before the archives are boxed up and shipped off to their soon to be permanent home at Cornell University’s Hip Hop Collection come this Fall. The gallery, located at 620 Greenwich Street NYC, is open 10am to 6pm Monday through Friday until August 10th. More info 212 627 5258. Meantime peep Afrika Bambaataa's What's In My Bag? video from Amoeba.com
Brooklyn Bridge Park's Syfy Movies with a View summer series, which runs through end of August, continues this week with tomorrow's (July 25th) screening of Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory plus the opening short Irish Folk Furniture by director Tony Donoghue. The films begin at sundown while the DJ (this week is the talented DJ Ayres of The Rub fame) starts at 6pm. Free. All ages. Directions and other info. Also outdoors in the park in Brooklyn is a free screening of last year's blockbuster James Bond flick Skyfall starring Daniel Craig as Bond which plays for free in Williamsburg's East River State Park. Seating begins at 6pm with the screening starting two and a half hours later at 8:30pm. Bring a blanket and a picnic. East River Park is located at 90 Kent Ave. Brooklyn, NY. More info by dialing 718-782-2731. Meanwhile free air-conditioned indoor film screenings in the week ahead include the 1947 Robert Wise directed film noir Born To Kill starring Lawrence Tierney, Claire Trevor, and Walter Slezak. This B&W film screens at the Mid Manhattan Library at 40th Street and Fifth Ave. on the sixth floor at 2pm. More venue info. And in keeping with the movies in New York theme I leave you with the original trailer for the John Carpenter directed (and co-composer of the film's score) sci-fi classic Escape From New York which since last Friday is having a special one-week run of the film's recently remastered hi-def, digital formatted version at the IFC Center theater in the West Village. Tomorrow is the last day of this highly recommended 1981 movie set in the then future of 1997 and starring Kurt Russell as the ultimate bad-ass Snake Plissken . More info here.