Did you attend the NYC Dept. of Small Business Services “Business Planning Basics” last Wednesday? There is nothing like being your own boss.  This course is a good start to organizing your business plan and making your dream of owning a small business a reality.  Did you hear Author Kristin Pitanza discuss Speed My Way Up?  I’m sure many of you have your own thoughts about relocating to Staten Island and others about how the Island changed after the Verrazzano Bridge was built and the ensuing overbuilding and overcrowding, especially on the roads.

Did you take any hikes throughout Staten Island’s many parks?  Please feel free to share your photos.   

Did you attend Picture Lotto Sunday, at historic Mont Sec house in Ft. Wadsworth? 

Do you read the Staten Island Advance?  If you do, you may be interested in viewing the Historic Pages from the Advance Archives.  Today, I happened upon the January 12, 1929 issue, page 22.  I like to read the different "hot topics" from many years ago and discover notable names or places. This particular day from left to right are articles as follows: "Movie Thrillers First Filmed on Island-Coach Made for Kaiser Wilhelm Among Relics at Scott's Place" [Sand Lane], "Island Abounds in Beautiful Paths for Hikers Through Woodland, Seven Routes are Described for the Guidance of Nature Lovers", written by William T. Davis and Charles W. Leng and guiding walkers through different interesting paths throughout the Island, "Gypsum Factory Began as a Tiny Backyard Plant", Immense Organization Has Birth in Experiments by J. B. King, an interesting article about how this factory began. (And also where both of my grandfathers worked and one died in a tragic accident one January evening), "All Kinds of Birds Live Here, Club Census Reveals", "The New Superintendent of Kingsley Sunday School Has Been in Office 30 Years, Benjamin J. Stanton Begins Fourth Decade", "Aged Veterans of the Sea, Broken From Church-Going Habit by Their Calling, Turn Gladly to Religion", Chapel Highly Popular at Snug Harbor, "Commodore Vanderbilt Statue Is Presented to St. George Museum", Gift of Miss Gertrude S. Clarke, "Resident of Staten Island Was Interpreter for King George in the Holy Land", Monarch Was then Prince Seeking Talk with Rabbi. And then the column "With the Toil-Bound Throngs (Aboard the St. George Ferry)" listing interesting tidbits about new jobs, new college students, new loves.  I especially enjoyed this bit: "Just to show his appreciation, VICTOR VERE totes around his Christmas gift, a brief case, regardless of the fact it is empty.."  And if you think Facebook is intrusive and our lives are bared--Check out The Advance Archives!


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Enjoy a Bird and Nature Walk on Wednesday 1/16 from 10-12 at the Conference House Park, 7455 Hylan Blvd.  Search the waters of Raritan Bay for waterfowl and the woods for hardy wintering songbirds in New York State’s southernmost park.

The Plastics: Pelagic Peril Exhibit has been extended at Conference House Park Visitor Center (in Conference House Park), 7455 Hylan Blvd. through Wednesday from 104.  This exhibition focuses on the serious problem of ocean trash that affects the health of people, marine life and local economies. It also features poignant images of marine life by local artists.

Come and meet other families in the neighborhood for Family Literacy Workshop: Baby Meet and Greet on Wednesday at 10:30 at the Todt Hill-Westerleigh Library, 2550 Victory Blvd. Bring your baby to meet and greet right before Baby Story Time and get to know the group! Free refreshments provided.

Wednesday is STEM Day at 4 at the Stapleton Library, 132 Canal St. Your children ages 5-11 will have a blast exploring Science, Technology, Engineering, and math!

Bring your children ages 8-14 to Lego Club on Wednesday at 4 at the Todt Hill-Westerleigh Library, 2550 Victory Blvd. The library will supply Legos, while you provide the imagination.  All materials must stay at the library, so bring a camera to document your creations!! First come, first served.

Take an Evening Group Hike through the Greenbelt beginning at Greenbelt Nature Center (in Blood Root Valley), 700 Rockland Ave. on Wednesday from 67:45. These weekly guided hikes cover 4-5 miles.

Baby Storytime: Baby & Me takes place on Thursday, 1/17 at 10:15 and again 11 at the Tottenville Library, 7430 Amboy Rd.  Your infants ages 0-18 mos. will enjoy songs, rhymes, stories and playtime along with a parent or caregiver. Meet other babies in the neighborhood!

Bring your children ages 5+ to the New Dorp Library, 309 New Dorp Ln. to make a fun craft using their imagination at Imagination Station on Thursday,  at 3:30.  

Learn the original Chen-Style Tai Chi on Friday, 1/18 from 8-9 a.m. at H.H. Biddle House, 70 Satterlee St.  Chen-Style Tai Chi is taught by traditional instruction; you will build up your knowledge bit-by-bit.  On Friday, from 9-10, Tai Chi, which focuses the mind while training the body--meditation through movement, is taught.

Think you've got what it takes to complete this month's Lego Challenge on Friday at 3:30 at the Great Kills Library, 56 Giffords Ln.?  Join your friends for an afternoon of construction, creativity, and curiosity. Pre-registration is recommended.

On Friday at 7:30, Everything Goes Café, 208 Bay St. features Ancient tongue six lines of Greek with Jonathan Bricklin--chanting, multimedia and theatrics. Suggested donation is $5. 

On Saturday, 1/19 from 9-12, you can volunteer for Forest Restoration: Jones Woods Park at Franklin Ave. and Arnold St. (in Jones Woods Park). Volunteers will learn how to identify and safely remove invasive plants in order to help create a healthier ecosystem.

For information on attending a Free Breastfeeding Class on Saturday from 10-1 at Richmond University Medical Center, 355 Bard Ave., call Doreen Allan-Reyes, 718-818-4294.

Join the Urban Park Rangers and Greenbelt Educators at Ecosystem Explorers: Deciduous Forest, Saturday at 11 at High Rock Park, 200 Nevada Ave.  Deciduous forests host many tree species; and all kinds of wildlife from birds to deer can be seen in their natural environment. Registration is required; call: 718- 351-3450 or email naturecenter@sigreenbelt.org

On Sunday, volunteer with HEALTH for Youth as they clean and beautify various locations as a part of the It’s My Park program.

From 9-10, the North Shore Esplanade, 78 Richmond Terr.

From 10-11, Lt. Lai Playground at Wall St. and St. Mark’s Pl.

From 11:30-12:30, Skyline Playground at Clyde Pl. and Prospect Ave.

For children ages 1-5, Music & Movement will be on Saturday at 11 at the New Dorp Library, 309 New Dorp Ln.  Sing, dance and reveal your inner musician. Our music time is dynamic and interactive, so come ready to participate in the fun.

A documentary, “Saving Jamaica Bay” Screening and Social with the Protectors of Pine Oak Woods takes place on Saturday from 1-4 at Clay Pit Ponds Visitors Center, 2351 Veterans Rd. W. This film  tells the story of how one community fought government inaction and overcame Hurricane Sandy to clean up and restore the largest open space in New York City, which had become a dumping ground for garbage and sewage. A moderated discussion and a winter social with hot wassail will follow.

Attend a free Writing Workshop for Adults: Introduction to Memoir Writing on Saturday from 2-4 at the Greenbelt Nature Center, 700 Rockland Ave. This workshop, led by award-winning author Marianna Randazzo, will introduce you to the elements of Memoir Writing and leave you with the beginnings of a story that you need to tell!  Register by calling 718-351-3450 or visit naturecenter@sigreenbelt.org Eventbrite ticket. 

Any time you fold a piece of paper, you are Paper Crafting.  Come to the Conference House Park, 7455 Hylan Blvd. on Saturday from 2-3:30.  Whether you’re a total newbie or a seasoned crafter, there will be something for everyone, covering basic skills, tips-and-tricks and some surprising techniques. You will learn about the simple tools of the craft, as well as various alternatives, so you get to know what you’ll want to have in your very own toolbox. All ages are welcome. Must be able to use scissors! Please note: Registration is highly encouraged to be sure of space! To register or get on an email list for updates, please email Stephanie.Parello@parks.nyc.gov.

Everything Goes Café, 208 Bay St. will host musical performances by Phoebe Blue at 7:30, and Comfort Cat at 8:30 on Saturday.

Join the Monthly Beach Clean-up on Sunday, 1/20 from 10-11:30 at Great Kills Park, Hylan Blvd. & Buffalo St.  While removing debris from the beach, you will record data and tally monthly local marine litter. Learn about the sources of pollution and how we can make our shores cleaner. Dress appropriately and call 718-354-4655 for reservations so we can plan for the size of the group.

Join the Urban Park Rangers in Brookfield Park, 575 Arthur Kill Rd. as you look for the Animal of the Month: Northern Harrier on Sunday from 11-12:30. The Northern Harrier, formerly known as the marsh hawk, hunts primarily on the wing and may cover up to 100 miles per day. To enhance your experience, bring a pair of binoculars or ask a Ranger to borrow a pair.

On Martin Luther King Day, millions of Americans honor Dr. King’s legacy by coming together for a national Day of Service. Lend a hand on Sunday at 1 to this service project to benefit wildlife in the Greenbelt, and make something to take home to support local wildlife at your residence at Greenbelt Nature Center, 700 Rockland Ave. Call 718-351-3450 to register or email naturecenter@sigreenbelt.org

Attend the Sea Shanty Sessions on Sunday from 2-5 and the third Sunday of every month, at the Noble Maritime Collection, Snug Harbor Cultural Center, 1000 Richmond Terr. bldg. #8, led by the Folk Music Society of New York. This offers a great opportunity to experience authentic, time-honored maritime songs in an appropriately historic setting. The sessions are free and family friendly, and you are encouraged to sing along if the mood strikes you!

Enjoy FREE Admission on the Cool School Holiday, Monday 1/21 from 10-5 at the Staten Island Children's Museum, 1000 Richmond Terr.  The museum will honor the legacy of Martin Luther King Jr. with a variety of events including a story time and art workshop based on Dr. King’s famous “I have a dream” speech as well as a performance by the Staten Island Steel Pan Orchestra.

If you know or are living with someone who appears to have a substance abuse problem, come talk and listen at the Parents & Family Substance Abuse Support Group on Monday from 7-8 at Christopher's Reason Recovery Center, 521 Arthur Kill Rd, 3rd fl.  The goal of this group is substance abuse education, referral sources, support family and friends. Hosted by Christopher’s Reason http://www.christophersreason.org/welcome.html

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

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