Good morning and welcome to the weekend. By 11am we’re going to leave behind those 30s temperatures and not be so cold again for at least a week (and hopefully not until late fall!). It was sooooo cold on Friday!

What was warming yesterday was seeing neighbors getting in line at Hartley House for a vaccination. The project was a joint community effort by Clinton Housing Development Company, Hartley House, and Hudson Guild, in partnership with Ryan/Chelsea-Clinton Community Health Center. The day was planned as a one-off event, but the demand and success of the venture has left organizers hopeful they can carry out vaccination at the venue on a regular basis. Read more…

Next week, we plan to say farewell to those bars, restaurants and stores that we lost during the pandemic. We’d like your memories and stories of your favorite places that were shuttered by COVID-19. Fill in the quick questionnaire and let us know if we missed a spot.

Our food writer, Michael Muñoz, will be pulling the list together with his own reminiscences during the week.

Let’s catch up on what’s been happening in Hell’s Kitchen…

The news (and conversation) in the neighborhood was dominated by the vicious attack on 65-year-old Vilma Kari on W43rd Street as she walked to church. As well as the attack, the action of staff in the building closing the door on the victim lead to threats of legal action against the building owners. When an arrest was made, the discovery that the accused man was on parole after serving 17 years for killing his mother and was living at a hotel on W40th being used to house homeless men caused a public safety outcry in Hell’s Kitchen and with NYPD that still remains unanswered by elected officials. The good news is that a GoFundMe set up for Vilma has raised over $200,000.

Race hate is abhorrent. W42ST deplores the current increase in hate crimes against our AAPI community. We will do anything we can to stop this, and continue to appeal for us all to deal with each other with kindness.

On my first visit to New York City back in 1991, one of the highlights of my trip was a boat ride around Manhattan on the Circle Line on a sunny winter’s day. Now, most of my time in Hell’s Kitchen has been spent overlooking (and hearing) the boats heading out with tourists.

This week, they returned from a winter of hibernation. There may not be the fireworks of Chinese New Year 2015 to celebrate, but we’re happy to get aboard and cheer them back!

My friend, Mark Lanham, is a ghost writer — and spends each Saturday serving coffee to the homeless at Union Square.

He made friends with Isma’il Abbas. Isma’il grew up in Hell’s Kitchen, the son of Palestinian emigrants. His crime as a child led to thirty years of incarceration. Four years of homelessness later, he’s writing a book (with Mark’s help). We published the prologue this week and encourage you to help with the GoFundMe to get the full book published. It’s an amazing story.

Jim Lahey from Sullivan Street Bakery posted this picture. “These were some of the keys of the 300 accounts that we could no longer make bread for, many of which have closed permanently. This was one year ago. There was no certain path forward. To all of our customers who have continued to support us — retail and wholesale, we are grateful,” he said.

Local politicians and community groups are calling for Governor Andrew Cuomo to “hit pause” on his $51bn grand plan for Manhattan Midtown West. The redevelopment around Penn Station is being called “a real estate development packaged as a ‘transportation’ project.” Read more…

Kilty Reidy is always standing by. He’s a Broadway swing — and you might have met him doing the coat check at Bar Centrale.

We had a cross-hemisphere chat with Kilty in Australia where he’s in the Melbourne production of Come from AwayStand by for a Broadway and Hell’s Kitchen comeback.

We all needed a smile this week, and Lili Fable lights up 9th Avenue in this lovely YouTube video with her granddaughter, Layne. It’s fun seeing all the people talking about the 1979 video we published last month — and you’ll even learn the proper pronunciation of Poseidon!

US employers added 916,000 jobs last month, yesterday live performing arts returned to New York City — and we reported that this month those moving into New York will cancel out those leaving the city for the first time since the start of the pandemic! New York is coming back…

What we’ve been reading

Irish Arts Center is preparing for curtain up! (Irish Central)

The city’s West African hair braiders are battling to survive the pandemic. (Documented)

Turning the spotlight on some of NYC’s nice landlords. (New York Times)

Book early! Coney Island Wonder Wheel reopens April 9. (6sqft)

Davy Crockett and Hell’s Kitchen… Read on! (Distractify)

Freeze Frame

The super-cold Friday did finish with a spectacular sunset.

Have a great Easter weekend.