Posted by Joan Coogan on Tuesday, December 24th, 2019 at 10:51am

I wish all my gentle readers a joyous and blessed Christmas, Hanukkah and Kwanzaa. Please share photos of your holiday tables filled with food or pictures of your family and friends celebrating. I will include these photos next week on my Weekly Events blog.

The grandkiddies helped their Dad pick out our Christmas tree this past weekend; we let them choose and decorate with all the “unbreakable” handmade, homemade ornaments from many years past up and to including the present day when they created their own. It was enjoyable watching the 1 year old playing with the cats and a toy dog and running from room to room following her older siblings. Then, the inevitable happened when she attempted to climb the step stool. I guess she will be ready for stairs next. Following are some photos from our tree-trimming afternoon. A plus of having a smaller tree is less ornaments, garland, lights and easier to reach for the kids.  And my Christmas Cactus did not disappoint.  The flowers are a delight!


What did you do for the Winter Solstice, the shortest day of the year? Did you take a Winter Solstice Walk at Conference House Park, attend Winter Solstice Fun at Clay Pit Ponds Visitors Center, learn about and identify Animal Tracks at Allison Pond,participate in Radiant Revelry 2019 at Tompkinsville Park or attend Festipalooza with the Viva Voce Chorus and Dyker Singers?  However you celebrated, I hope it was enjoyable and you are ready for longer bright sunny days!

People ask me, “How can I receive the “Weekend Events” blog. If you enjoy reading my “Weekend Events on Staten Island” and would like to be my Facebook friend, you know what to do—friend request. If you would prefer to be on my mailing list, please email joan.coogan@gmail.com or call or text me at 646-258-9696; I will forward it to you each week. Nevertheless, please do me the honor of SHARING my blog with your friends, either on Facebook (click “Share” underneath the blog) or on the Gillani Homes site.

Attend an exhibit Breaking Ground: Twenty Years of the New York Chinese Scholar’s Garden which brings the fascinating story of this unique space to life through artifacts, photographs, and artwork, in honor of the 20th anniversary of its completion. Explore the cultural impact of the NYCSG, an immersive space modeled after traditional Ming Dynasty gardens (1368-1644), featuring a bamboo forest path, waterfalls, a Koi-filled pond, Chinese calligraphy, and a variety of Ghongshi scholar’s rocks, creating the first authentic outdoor classical scholar’s garden in the United States. Newhouse Center for Contemporary Art (Buildings C & G) Snug Harbor Cultural Center & Botanical Garden,1000 Richmond Terr. On display 12/27–12/29 Thurs-Friday 12-7, Sat- Sun 11-5. $5 Gallery Admission, $4 Students/Seniors/Members, Free for students grades 6-12 with student ID.

The Technology Open Lab takes place on Thursday, 12/26 from 3-4 at the Richmond Town Library, 200 Clarke Ave. Have technology questions? Bring them to our Open Lab. No registration required.

On Thursday 12/26 at 3:30, challenge your creativity at Imagination Station at the South Beach Library, 21-25 Robin Rd. with this open ended craft station where materials will be provided to ignite your imagination. Good for children 5-18 years old.

Kids Puzzle Hour is on Thursday 12/26 from 4-5 at the Mariners Harbor Library, 206 South Ave. Keep your mind sharp by joining us for Puzzle Hour. We will have all types of puzzles, including word searches and crossword puzzles, for you to decipher. Good for all ages.

Join your favorite librarians at the Todt Hill-Westerleigh Library, 2550 Victory Blvd. for Family Story Time on Thursday 12/26 at 4.

Baby Lapsit takes place on Friday, 12/27 at 10:30 at the New Dorp Library, 309 New Dorp Ln.Bring your baby to an interactive program with simple books, gentle movement and songs. Meet other babies & caregivers in the community. For ages birth to one and a half years.

Children ages 1 ½ to 2 ½ can participate in Toddler Time on Friday 12/27 at 11:30 at the Stapleton Library, 132 Canal St. Bring your toddler to an interactive program featuring, books, finger plays, songs and rhymes, followed by unstructured play time. Network with other caregivers and provide social opportunities for your toddler.

Create a Friendship Bracelet for yourself or a friend on Friday, 12/26 at 3:30 at the South Beach Library, 21-25 Robin Rd. We will be using embroidery floss to create our bracelets. Good for teens/young adults 13-18 years old.

The African American Community in collaboration with the JCC Beacon Program at JHS 49, 101 Warren St. will host a Kwanzaa Celebration on Friday 12/27 from 4-7. Kwanzaa is a week-long celebration observed from 12/26 through 1/1 which focuses on the traditional African values of family, community, responsibility, commerce and self-improvement. Come take part in this family-friendly atmosphere of activities and shop the Kujichagulia Marketplace. There will be workshops and performances as well as vendors, food and much more. Admission is free. For more info, contact Dorcas Meyers at 917-406-7736.

Come early, stay late for Lantern Fest Fridays at Snug Harbor, 100 Richmond Terr. on Friday 12/27 for a 3-for-1 ticket. The Staten Island Museum, the Newhouse Center for Contemporary Art and the Noble Maritime Collection will be open until 8:00 p.m. in honor of the NYC Winter Lantern Festival activities.  Follow the lighted walkway to Snug Harbor’s front lawn to warm up and check out some amazing exhibitions while you’re here! Buildings A, C, D. Visit all 3 for $10--or visit each separately at the following rates: Staten Island Museum: $8, Newhouse Center for Contemporary Art: $5, Noble Maritime Collection: Suggested donation of $5. For tickets, visit https://snugharbor.secure.force.com/ticket/#details_a0S1H00000SDYpDUAX

Attend the S.T.E.A.M. Lab, a hands-on, interactive science, technology, engineering, art or math for kids on Saturday 12/28 at 11 at the Dongan Hills Library, 1617 Richmond Rd. Join us to see what one or more of these topics we are having fun with this week. Registration is required; call 718-351-1444.

On Saturday, 12/28 at 4, attend Author: Helen Levin “Small Gifts: A Memoir of an Artist in the Classroom" at Everything Goes Café, 208 Bay St.  Within today's revolving door of teaching, Artist Helen Levin forged a career as both an exhibiting painter and an innovative Educator. While many pass through an engagement with the profession, those who endure prefer to forget. Not so with Levin; she found her "voice" in the classroom too, as she gave meaning to her "day job" simply because she felt compelled to make a difference. For her students, old and young, social and artistic development went hand in hand.

Participate in Open Mic at Everything Goes Café, 208 Bay St. on Saturday at 7:30. Share your Music, Words, Movies, More! Music: 2 songs, 8 min max. Open sign up Poetry, Songs, Video, Comedy, Improvisational Story-telling, etc. in a supporting attentive environment. Seasoned pros, beginners, and everybody in-between can enjoy sharing their gifts on our welcoming stage. We have microphones, PA, amps, projector, screen, and an interested MC.

Enjoy the Holiday Festival of Tradition: Festival of Trees and Lights on Saturday and Sunday from 14 at the H.H. Biddle House in Conference House Park, 70 Satterlee St. This event repeats every week on Saturday and Sunday through 1/5/2020. Celebrate the holiday festival of traditions including the menorah and Christmas trees of Germany, Hungary, Scandinavia, and Italy. The exhibit can be seen on weekdays by appointment only. This free cultural event sponsored by the Tottenville Historical Society with generous support by Council Member Joe Borelli. See photos from last year’s festival.

Participate in End of the Year Hike/White Trail (Moderate) on Sunday, 12/29 from 111 at the Greenbelt Nature Center in Blood Root Valley, 700 Rockland Ave. at Brielle Ave.   Join the Greenbelt educators and the Urban Park Rangers for the last hike of the year through the Bucks Hollow section of the central Greenbelt. Good for all ages. Our moderate hikes are longer, faster-paced hikes on rugged terrain, approximately 5-6 miles.

Every evening beginning at 5, you can visit the DiMartino home at 107 Sharrotts Rd. to enjoy the most spectacular Winter Wonderland Holiday Display and favorite for kids of all ages. Joe DiMartino erected this wonder in memory of his wife Debra Ann who died on 9/11. To date, more than $200,000 has been donated to Staten Island University Hospital in Debra’s name to support Pediatric Oncology. While you are visiting, drop a cash donation of any amount or a check made payable to “SIUH Foundation, Inc.” into the donation box. This year, DiMartino has set up credit card scanners along with an active Venmo account for donations. Visit “Lights for Life” on Facebook and read https://www.silive.com/entertainment/2019/11/staten-island-homeowner-shows-off-elaborate-christmas-display-collects-donations-for-charity.html for more info and how Joe DiMartino makes our Christmas season just a little more joyous.

I welcome comments and photos at events you have attended. If you want to share events for me to post, email, text or call.

Joan Coogan

Associate Real Estate Broker

Gillani Homes

646-258-9696 – cell



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