Lightscapes an adventure in light at Van Cortlandt Manor in Croton


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Looking for a unique experience?   You should visit Lightscapes, a magical and incredible nighttime display of lights at Van Cortlandt Manor in Croton on Hudson.   Lightscapes is an outdoor walk through the grounds of this historic property which has been transformed into a fantasy filled light garden.

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Walk through the tunnel of light that changes color, pass the fairy garden of lights and mushrooms,  more.   You cross the bridge over the river of light and enter the Colorwheel castle, then exit  to fields of lighted butterflies, a praying mantis, ladybugs and other fantastic lighted creations.  It is quite the marvel.

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The tour winds it way through the grounds of the Manor until it reaches the manor house itself which is lit in an amazing display of light that is synchronized to music.  Outside the manor is a fantastic field of lit tulips truly amazes.


This is an event not to miss, and if you have been to the Great Jack-o-Lantern Blaze (also held here) you will know the level of quality and creativity that is involved in hosting these events.



LIGHTSCAPES takes place rain or shine and admission is by timed ticket only. Remaining dates are May 27- 30, June 3-5, and June 10-12.

Online tickets are $20 for adults ($25 Saturdays), $16 for children 3-17 ($20 Saturdays), and free for children under 3 and Historic Hudson Valley members. Tickets are $2 more when purchased on site or over the phone.

Van Cortlandt Manor is at 525 South Riverside Ave. in Croton-on-Hudson, NY, just off Route 9.

Tickets and info: 914-366-6900,

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Greenwich International Film Festival June9-12 announces special events to its schedule



The Greenwich International Film Festival (GIFF) announced today additional special events for its second edition, as well as its jury members for competition films. GIFF will be hosting special events such as “LOL: The Big Business of Comedy” and “Children’s Acting Workshop.” The festival will also be honoring John Turturro at a conversation series entitled “Spotlight On.”

Comprised of directors, producers, writers, and actors, “LOL: The Big Business of Comedy” is a conversation  guaranteed to make you laugh out loud. Panelists include Richard Brener (President of Production of New Line Cinema), Chris Bender (Producer of We’re The Millers, Vacation, Horrible Bosses), Peter Principato (Head of Principato-Young – Talent Manager; Producer of Wet Hot American Summer), Stuart Cornfeld (Partners with Ben Stiller; Producer of Dodgeball, Zoolander, Tropic Thunder), & comedian Will Arnett (Arrested Development). Moderated by Deadline Hollywood’s New York Editor Mike Fleming, this event will take place on Saturday, June 11th at 8:00PM and will be followed by an after party.

“Children’s Acting Workshop” reveals secrets from the pros on how to make it in the entertainment industry.  Acting Coach, Matt Newton, Casting Director, Adrienne Stern, and Moderator and Acting Coach, David Gideon, along with some of Hollywood’s bright young stars including The Jungle Book’s Neel Sethi and actress Peyton List (of Disney Channel’s Bunk’d) will be participating in this engaging workshop on Saturday, June 11th at 1:00PM. The festival previously announced it will screen The Jungle Book on Friday, June 10th at 4:00PM.

The Greenwich International Film Festival will take place June 9th ‐ 12th, 2016. Tickets are now on sale and available for purchase at  or at the festival’s box office.

 About The Greenwich International Film Festival

Greenwich International Film Festival (GIFF) is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization that hosts a world-class film festival in Greenwich, CT. The goal of the festival is to bridge the worlds of film, finance and philanthropy. The second annual festival will take place June 9th to 12th, 2016, and will support important human rights initiatives, as part of its social impact focus.  The four-day event will feature a star-studded Opening Night Party, film premieres, educational panels, a Children’s Acting Workshop, an honoree gala, and more.  For additional information, and a full list of films at the Festival, please visit:

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Dan Rooney’s Cafe and Bar: Eat, drink and catch a game

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I  was attending an event  held at Empire City Casino in Yonkers which gave me the perfect opportunity to check out Dan Rooney’s Cafe and Bar.   The atmosphere is one of sports pub blended with an Irish-American pub with tavern food, a large selection of beers and an Irish whiskey menu.  The room is trimmed in dark wood, and  more than 40 flat screen TVs ensure that patrons do not miss a second of action.

For a cocktail I tried the Coconut and Raspberry mojito  as suggested by our waiter, John.    A  great selection that was very refreshing and complimented the menu items I would be sampling.rooneys 4

There are many appetizers from which to choose.  My table picked a number of items including  BBQ Pork Sliders, Buffalo Chicken Wings, Loaded Nachos and homemade Soft Pretzels.  All were great picks and my favorite was the pretzels with the side of beer/cheese sauce and the delicious sliders.  The wings were good but could have been prepared with a little less hot sauce.

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BBQ Pork Sliders

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Soft Pretzels

For our main course selections we chose the Dan Rooney Burger, 8 ounces of beef with brie, water cress, onions  and honey mustard on a brioche roll.  Very tasty.   It was served with fries.

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Dan Rooney Burger


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Blackened Salmon

My selection  was the Blackened Salmon  with glazed carrots in a herb sauce.  A nicely prepared and delicious dish.   This was a healthy selection and very enjoyable.  Another selection was the rib eye steak which was excellent and cooked to perfection.

My waiter told us we had to try some of the homemade desserts.  I was surprised how interesting  and unique they were.    We all shared a home made peanut and chocolate Candy Bar (wow!), and amazing Brownie Sundae with ice cream made with a hint of Guinness stout, walnuts and whipped cream.  Unique and decadent.

Dan Rooney’s was an unexpected treat and if you find yourself at Empire City Casino, or in the area it is a great place to have a cocktail and grab a bite.  And of course, with plenty of TVs, catch a game.

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Dan Rooney’s Cafe and Bar

810 Yonkers Ave  Yonkers, New York   (at Empire City Casino)

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Happy Days are here again at the Westchester Broadway Theater

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The classic 1970s TV  hit Happy Days comes to the Westchester Broadway Theatre as a fun and family friendly musical.  The musical has been adapted from the long running and iconic TV sitcom that takes place in the  1950s and 1960s, which ran for 11 seasons from 1974 to 1984 and was one of the highest rated television shows of that time.   Creator Garry Marshall has written the book for the musical and music and lyrics are by Paul Williams.

Though the show was not on Broadway it debuted at the Goodspeed Opera House in Connecticut in 2007 and later was produced on National Tours and European tours.  It has now arrived here in Westchester at the WBT and all the favorite faces from the TV show are here, including Fonzi, Richie Cunningham and his family, Chachi, Ralph Malph, Potsie and Arnold!

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The story is set in 1959 in   Milwaukee and the plot involves the fact that the property on which Arnold’s (the gang’s favorite hangout)  has been sold to developers who intend to demolish the  building.  In fear of losing their favorite eatery, Richie and his friends devise a plan (and with the help of his father ) to host a fund raiser to save Arnold’s from the wrecking ball.  Even returning to the scene is Pinky Tuscadero  (Fonzie’s girlfriend) who had a limited part in the TV show but has a larger role in this production.

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Pinky and The Fonz

This light hearted musical features the theme song to the TV series, as well as 21 songs which are woven through the show that remind us we are in a late 1950s to early 1960s setting.  There are fine performances from Herb Porter(Richie), Lori Hammel as Mrs. Cunningham, Nic Varricchio as Fonzi and  Maria Logan as Pinky.  The rest of the cast does a fine job.   The sets include Arnold’s diner, the Cunningham’s kitchen and the Cunningham’s yard which all featured prominently in the TV show. The performers do not try to imitate the original sitcom cast but give performances in the spirit of those characters.

Jonathan Stahl directed the performance and he has years of theater experience in directing, stage management and choreography.

So come and be happy !  Come see Happy Days at the Westchester Broadway Theater.   Dinner is included in your ticket price and is served prior to the performance.

Show runs May 5th to  July 17 2016

Westchester Broadway Theater

One Broadway Plaza  Elmsford NY    914  592-2222

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Calling all Foodies ! Westchester Wine and Food Week is back June 8-12

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Food and wine lovers in Westchester County have reason to celebrate as the annual Westchester Magazine Food and Wine Festival returns  June 8th-12th  for its 6th annual celebration.   This celebration is considered to be one of the premier food and wine events in the Northeast.  The event is spread over several days with unique events in several locations Some of the highlights are:

Thursday June 9th Burger and Beer Blastat the Kensico Dam Plaza park in Valhalla.  Attendees will sample burgers from 30 different local restaurants, with beer, wine and spirits served.  You can vote for your favorite burger in the competition. Live music will make the evening a festival for all.  New this year will be the Empire Casino Tent with five gaming tables, and cocktails and food from some of the Casinos restaurants

Time 6pm to 10pm .  Cost : $75


Friday June 10th –An evening with Westchester’s Tastemakers now in its 2nd year, it takes place at the Ritz-Carleton in White Plains.  Twenty of  the County’s top Chef’s will prepare two of their own dishes each  for an exclusive gathering.  Each dish will be paired with top wines from around the globe.  Some of the chefs who will be there will be Peter Kelly (Xaviers), Bobby Will (Saltaire),  Jay Lippin (Crabtree), Michael White (Bedford Post),  Leo Pablo (Inn at Pound Ridge) and many more !

Time: 6:30 pm to 10:30 pm  Cost: $125

Saturday June 11th- Grand Tasting Villageat Kensico Dam Plaza, 1 Bronx River Parkway, Valhalla NY.  This incredible event which  grows in popularity each year and will return for a 2nd year  to Kensico Dam Park. The event is  located outdoors under white tents concentrating on Farm to Table cuisine.  Considered to be the “Worlds Fair” of the Wine and Food Festival.  There will be 43 local restaurants serving tastings of their specialty dishes.   For wine lovers you can sample 100 different wines from the many wine growing regions of the world.  There will be celebrity chefs demos  local craft beers and wine. An event not to be missed!.

Time 12 pm to 5 pm   Cost: $75         Connoisseurs Ticket: $125 (access to Connoisseurs Tent for exclusive Tastings.)

The event helps support two not for profit organizations, The Food Bank For Westchester and The Friends of Westchester County Parks  There will be other events as well so check the website below for more information and updates as the event draws closer.

For more information, the full list of restaurants and tickets

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Classic family Italian dining: Frank Guido’s Little Italy



“Chi Mangia bene,vive bene”  orhe who eats well, lives well” is the motto of Frank Guido’s Little Italy a wonderful  Italian restaurant . Located in the Hudson Valley town of Kingston, it could easily be found in the heart of New York City.   This is the perfect place to go for a  traditional Italian meal  and to enjoy  “family style” , which is large plates meant to be shared with your family or friends.


The interior space is a lovely dining room with brick walls, tables covered in white table cloths and Italian themed paintings.   One wall is covered in family photos spanning generations which emphasizes the family feel.  Another wall is covered in photos of famous people who have dined at the restaurant including Yankees Phil Rizzuto, Joe Torre, and actor James Gandolfini  (The Sopranos) just to name a few.

With so many choices on the menu we decided to start with Eggplant Papettas which was like a veggie meatball with a soft texture served with marinara sauce.  It was delicious.   Another pick was the classic stuffed artichoke  which was fresh and light ans served with  seasoned breadcrumbs inside and an olive oil base.


Eggplant Papettas

For our main course selection we chose the Chicken Parmigiana (how could one not choose this classic?).  We had to try this house specialty and we were not dissapointed.  It was fantastic with fresh mozzarella and pecorino romano cheese and “Mama’s” tomato sauce.  The portion was huge!


Chicken Parm

I also wanted seafood so the waiter suggested  Penne Angelina which consisted of pasta with jumbo shrimp , scallops, lobster meat, served in a white clam sauce ( I substituted the sauce of tomato sauce).  This mouth watering dish was a hit and  there was plenty to take home for another meal.


Penne Angelina


Penne Ala Vodka was  a nice side choice  and was a perfect blend of marinara sauce, vodka and a touch of cream.  Very tasty.

Dessert:  I shared the Guidomisu, their take on Tiramisu and the Bomba which was vanilla and chocolate gelato with a  cherry and almond center finished with a chocolate coating.  A great way to end the meal.  The last sweet was a the Chocolate Mousse Cake, composed of white and dark chocolate  mousse between chocolate cake and served with whipped cream. Nice !


If you are in the Kingston NY area, Frank Guido’s Little Italy is the perfect choice for great old school Italian comfort food.  With great service and comfortable interior, you will feel right at home.



Frank Guido’s Little Italy

14 Thomas Street Kingston New York




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Wine Geeks offers a class and tasting on Riesling. Just in time for Mother’s day

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An interesting wine tasting event will be taking place Saturday, May 7th at Wine Geeks in Armonk.   The event will a wine class and tasting of  Riesling wine.  This could be a unique and interesting  Mother’s day gift!

If you are not familiar with Riesling wine, it is a white grape variety, which originated in the Rhine Region of Germany where it is very popular. The grape is very aromatic  and is used to make dry, semi-sweet and sweet varieties.  The wine is gaining in popularity world-wide and can be enjoyed on its own or paired with a number of dishes.   Today it is grown in many areas of the world including Germany, Alsace France, New York State, Washington State and many other regions.

During this class Sommelier Derek Todd (original wine director at Blue Hill at Stone Barns) will be your guide on a tasting tour of eight different Rieslings from all around the world, ranging from bone-dry to delectably sweet and all points in between.  And Wine Geeks will be serving an array of fine artisanal cheeses and charcuterie to demonstrate how to pair the wine.

Participants in Wine Geeks classes also enjoy a one-night-only 10% discount on wines throughout the store.

Some come out to Armonk for some fun, education and celebrate all things Riesling. Other events are coming to Wine Geeks in the near future.

When:  Saturday May 7    @ 7:00pm – 8:30pm

$35 per person

Where:  Wine Geeks

559 Main Street Armonk New York

 Reservations Needed:   914-273-9463

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ArtsBash: food, fun and art returns to White Plains

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ArtsBash has returned to ArtsWestchester in White Plains.   On Friday, May 20 2016 from 6pm to 9pm a party will be  held to support ArtsWestchester.  The evening will include food from 30+ top local restaurants, craft beers, and of course there will be plenty of art on display and open artists studios.

Tickets for the event start at $75

In addition, there is a separate Family ArtsBash held on Saturday May 21st from 1-5pm.  This event is FREE, and is a full afternoon of fun including,  lots of children’s art workshops, art exhibits and open artists studios.

Some of the events on Family Arts Bash are : Fish Prints, Clay creations, Lego Stop Animation, Model Making, Face Painting, Digital Animation and more.

For more information and tickets:


31 Mamaroneck Avenue White Plains New York

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