WEEKEND PICKS
Weekend Picks: International Pillow Fight Day in Union Square

When: Saturday, April 5th, 3pm

ALL ACCESS PASS
Event Review: 'Brilliant Machines Rock' w/ Compressorhead @ Union Square 11/12

The spectacle brought out many sides of the changing crowd, with some awestricken by the technological feat of Compressorhead, as well as those fearful of the inception of a robot takeover. Nonetheless, people enjoyed themselves, as many were taken down memory lane with the classic tunes, or simply by seeing things only once imagined coming to life before their eyes.

One may question the emotional connection between the robots and the crowd, but there was not much of a disconnect. The cheers between and after each song were authentic, and the reaction as the band started a new record mirrored that of a human band. Compressorhead is the real deal, and they are about as heavy metal as you can get.

It’s fascinating to see what the human mind can accomplish, and GE’s Brilliant Machines campaign, along with Compressorhead, certainly entertained and inspired New York City.

HAPPENINGS
Adoptapalooza: Pet Adoption Extravaganza!

Adoptapalooza is a free public event featuring activities and entertainment—raffles, training and agility demonstrations, advice on pet health care, grooming, and pet photographers, to name a few. Just like dogs will wag their tales come rain or shine, Adoptapalooza will go from 12 – 5PM rain or shine!

Pet Adoptions!
Close to 300 dogs, cats, and rabbits will be available for adoption from over 35 Alliance participating organizations. A list of all the confirmed shelters and recue groups found at the ‘palooza can be found at the bottom of the page.

Prepare Your Pets for Emergencies!
In a fast paced city like NYC, pets can slip away from us. Emergencies happen to the best of us, but the best of us can prepare for these situations with the help of experts at Adoptapalooza. Here are some of the ways in which you can prepare for pet emergencies at the ‘palooza:
-Have your dog or cat microchipped for $25.
-Register for a dog license (required by law in NYC) with the NYC Department of Health.
-Get free Pet Passports to record your pets' important information, and learn how to prepare yourself and your pets for the unexpected from representatives from the New York City Office of Emergency Management or Ready New York.
CHEAP EATS
Glaze Teriyaki Welcomed to Union Square

The end of August marked a great occasion for the Glaze Teriyaki chain. Hailing from Seattle, Glaze Teriyaki showcases delectable Japanese/Korean street food to metropolitan areas. Glaze Teriyaki opened its first restaurant in Midtown East in New York in 2010, and after much success, the branch has expanded to Union Square.

Owner Paul Krug and Chef Dennis Lake joined forces to open this second location downtown. The menu at the Union Square location remains the same as its Midtown sister, and trust us, this is a good thing. The simple menu consists of traditional teriyaki plates, where you can choose from chargrilled chicken thigh or breast, Japanese bbq hangar steak, organic salmon, pork loin, wok vegetables, or soy maritnated tofu as your main entree. Served over a bed of short grain white or brown rice, along with a side salad, the dish is a steal, with prices from $6.75-$9.50. The dish comes with so much food, it's enough for two meals. Pair with it some side dishes and you'll leave a happy customer. Sides range from $3-$5 with options like edamame, cold sesame soba noodles, shishito peppers cucumber salad, crispy gyoza, and spicy Asian bbq pickles. Chef Dennis Lake is passionate about the Glaze Teriyaki franchise and sure knows how to whip up some good grub. Another plus of dining at Glaze Teriyaki, besides the fact that it's quick and affordable, is that the restaurant is dedicated to using all natural proteins and local products whenever possible.

CULINARY OCCASIONS
Happy National Rice Pudding Day!

In honor of National Rice Pudding Day, you should without a doubt check out some of the best rice pudding dishes around the city. Rice pudding has been around for thousands of years, so why not have a whole day to celebrate it!? Originally, rice pudding was used by ancient Middle Easterners medicinally, but now we know the best way to use rice pudding is to eat it. Enjoy!

Costanera Cocina Peruana, located in Montclair, NJ, serves patrons a delicious Peruvian rice pudding. The Combinado Clasico ($5) is a parfait of vanilla and Arborio rice pudding with golden raisins, Peruvian purple corn pudding, pineapples, apricots, and papaya.

CULINARY OCCASIONS
Inside the Union Square Greenmarket

Living in the city, it can be difficult for urban dwellers to be in touch with the origins of their food and beverages. Of course, there are many restaurants with exquisitely-prepared dishes inspired by cuisines all over the world, as well as a plethora of grocery stores that offer us more consumer options than we could ever imagine. However, there still exists a lack of connection from the original agricultural process that goes into the ultimate finished product.

While New York City may be far from an agrarian utopia, there are still many farmers markets open to the public that can provide some form of insight into the food and its original farming process. The Union Square Greenmarket is a fine example of one. This Greenmarket operates on the north and west sides of Union Square Park, and is open Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday from 8:00 A.M. to 6:00 P.M. There are many different vendors set up around Union Square Greenmarket, and they sell anything from organic red garlic to sheep’s milk soap to lemon catnip plants. One can visit this market for a simple stroll and casual observation session of the people and products, or to sample different foods and speak with the vendors about the farms where the food originates and what to do with it.

THE BEAT
MCA Day Heads To Union Square May 19

For more details, head over to their Facebook page and stay tuned for future updates. As listed on their site, attendees are encouraged to bring anything, photos, tapes etc, that can be used to memorialize MCA's life and career. The event is sure to be as engaging as it is nostalgic and affecting.

RESTAURANT 101
Coffee Shop


Don’t be fooled by its name, this place is not your average corner coffee joint. Smack in the middle of the bustling Union Square, Coffee Shop has a steady stream of patrons trickling in all day and well into the evening. The hoards of people are a testament to Coffee Shop’s popularity, which is mostly due to their great food, low prices, and hip bar scene.

The noise level is inexplicably high, so if you’re looking for a quiet night out we don’t recommend it. But, if you can handle it, we suggest you order the Greek Salad. Fresh lettuce, feta cheese, ripe tomatoes, and cucumbers are dressed in a light summer dressing. Around the outside are four balls of lightly fried falafel that have a great flavor. We also recommend trying out one of their Deluxe Burgers. We tried the Char Grilled Turkey Burger on a Toasted Potato Bun with a little added avocado to complement the juicy burger. There are tons of toppings and options to choose from, including 4 types of cheese, bacon, avocado, or fried onions.

IN THE SPOTLIGHT
L is for Lounges

If you're looking for a swank, hip lounge to celebrate this New Year's Eve, you might want to check out some of these hot venues in NYC to kick off the New Year

At La Zarza, voted East Village's number one exotic resto-lounge, they will be hosting a five hour open bar, including a champagne toast at midnight. Even better, a ticket to La Zarza includes a complimentary ticket to the Juliet after party.

TRAVEL
Insider's Guide: New York City In 24 Hours

Most of us don't have the luxury of taking a week long holiday around New Year's Eve. With the Christmas holiday having just ended, our vacation time at work has been all dried up and New Year's may even seem like a luxury to some people. So for those of you who want to get the most out of your New York City New Year's Eve experience, here is our Top 10 places to see, in travel order, before you hop the plane back home and back to reality.

1. Central Park: Start your tour through the park at 72nd Street and Central Park West, heading east toward 5th Avenue. You will pass Strawberry Fields where John Lennon played and through the meadow and past The Pond. You will get picturesque views of the Midtown skyline from all angles as you cut across the park.