Good morning and welcome to the weekend. It’s going to be a sunny Saturday and Sunday — but temperatures are well below freezing this morning and there’s ice around after the last couple of days of rain. Let’s be careful out there!

While it’s vital to support NYC Black-owned businesses and cultural celebrations year-round, there are plenty of ways to learn, observe, and honor Black History Month locally, with a bevy of performances, workshops, festivals, and exhibitions popping up in Hell’s Kitchen and Midtown throughout February. Read on to find out more…


Here’s what’s been happening in Hell’s Kitchen this week…

For 45 years — come rain, shine or COVID — Encore Community Services have been delivering meals for the elderly from the basement of St Malachy’s Church (the Actor’s Chapel). We went out on deliveries with “Broadway’s Longest Running Act of Loving Care”. More here…

Sad news. Former Miss USA and Hell’s Kitchen resident Cheslie Kryst has died. Her body was found at 7:15am on Sunday morning on W42nd Street beneath the Orion Condominium building where she lived. More here…

After almost two weeks, two local cats missing after a devastating fire at a 10th Avenue apartment building were recovered from an air shaft by their owners (with the help of FDNY). Read more…

Politics is not in great shape around the world — and there is no stranger shape than that of voter maps being “tweaked”. We checked on the origins of Gerrymandering after hearing that 25 blocks of Hell’s Kitchen were being moved from one congressional district to another.

Gerrymandering is named after US VP Elbridge Gerry, who created a partisan district that was compared to the shape of a salamander. Below is the probable shape of Jerry Nadler’s new 10th District. What animal does it remind you of? Read more…

Dozens of desperate New Yorkers every year don gloves, boots and protective suits to dive through mountains of trash for prized possessions. Sometimes they even find them. Read more…

If you like your cocktails “high”, you can check out a new late-night bar on the 101st Floor of Hudson Yards from tonight. Read more…

While you are sipping your cocktail, you might spot the occasional helicopter landing below at the West 30th Street Heliport. This week, council member Gale Brewer wrote to the Governor and Mayor urging them to chop the heliport from Hudson River Park. Blade, the main operator from the helipad, agrees with cutting out the annoying tourist flights above Manhattan — but says their 24/7/365 operation offers medical services and from 2024 they will have quiet, electric and emission-free aircraft. Read more…

We attended a press conference this week on the corner of 10th Avenue and W44th Street organized by council member Erik Bottcher to call for better bike lanes on 10th and 11th Avenues. Senator Brad Hoylman was there to rally the crowd “to make New York City a city of pedestrians first.” Then a Hell’s Kitchen mom spoke of the heartbreak of losing her son: “Unfortunately and unbelievably he was run over and killed 12 unimaginable years ago. Seth was 22 and the center of my life and he was gone in a second.” Read more…

We came away better informed, but deeply frustrated that after 12 years of some improvements, it seems the way to move things forward is for politicians to call press conferences to call for politicians to do something about the major issues in New York City. Your thoughts, please — hit reply!

Catch the season’s most anticipated theatrical premieres and long-running favorites at banner prices right here in Hell’s Kitchen during NYC Off-Broadway Week, running February 14 through 27. In collaboration with the Off-Broadway League, city marketing and tourism firm NYC & Company is offering 2-for-1 tickets to 17 shows, including 7 in Hell’s Kitchen and Midtown West. Details here…

The reign of Charlamagne Tha God looking over 11th Avenue has been short. His first series ended — and his set was moved out of the former Daily Show studios this week. Who’s up next for that premium studio (and billboard position)? Read more…

The guys from SNL bought a ferry (did you hear?)! It’s a HUGE ferry…
The Hudson River Park Trust (HRPK) is renovating a pier. It’s a HUGE pier…
The new pier is being reconstructed with a space for a historic ship.
Is it a match?

What we’ve been reading

“Chuck the Sheds” — there’s a brunch hour rally today for opponents to New York’s outdoor dining. (The Village Sun)

A microwave oven thrown onto the tracks at 50th Street is just one of the obstacles for the MTA. (NY1)

Kids report on Vegan Friday at their schools… (Eater)

Will Moynihan Station users finally get benches to sit on? (Patch)

Where do you stand in the debate about what makes a “real” New Yorker? (Pure Wow)

Freeze Frame

If W55th Street was not lit and glamorous enough — David Serrano sent us his photo of Richard Schieffer modeling a “Red ribbon Lewk” by Edward Sylvia. The custom queerlesque ensemble was created for a World Aids Day benefit performance at Spot Bar.

“This was a very personal creation for both myself and Richard, due to our mutual journeys with HIV/AIDS. He approached me last summer about creating a powerful, gender fluid queer ‘superhereaux’ look for this benefit performance, with a Red AIDS awareness ribbon theme. This is the result!” said Edward.

For those fashion lovers, the design features a signature keyhole french G cut Leo in nude mesh overlaid with scarlet stretch mesh bedazzled with multiple sizes of Austrian hotfix crystals in red Siam and red holographic mini sequins. Structured soft sculpture breakaway Red AIDS ribbons shoulder pieces in scarlet stretch taffeta, reinforced with rigilene and 3/4″ foam rubber. A two-piece split breakaway hostess skirt in stretch scarlet taffeta with bejeweled belt and buckle, bejeweled scarlet stretch mesh opera gloves, and scarlet holographic sequined pillbox fascinator with a scarlet diamond net veil.

Happy birthday to Liz Fischer.