Avenues and Alleys’ Brett Leveridge on Christmas in NYC

Avenues and Alleys founder Brett LeveridgeWe’re pleased to announce that Brett Leveridge, the man behind Avenues and Alleys, has a story in Guideposts magazine’s popular annual holiday publication, The Joys of Christmas.

In the story, Brett talks about the prominent role NYC has played role in forging America’s Christmas traditions and gives readers a sneak peek of what they’ll experience when they participate in one of our Christmas in NYC walking tours.

You’re encouraged to read the story and if you’re going to be in NYC for the holidays, book your tour early before all the slots are filled.

Katz’s, the Kings of Pastrami

Do you want to eat at Katz’s when you visit New York? Oh, yes—yes, you do.

From The New York Times:

Katz’s has become a survivor in a neighborhood that had long-established delis. It began 125 years ago under a different name, Iceland Brothers. They took in the first Katz, Willy, as a partner in the early years of the 20th century. Eventually, he bought out the brothers and changed the name from Iceland & Katz to Katz’s. Read more

The front of Katz's Deli on Houston Street.

Three weeks of Wild Bill

Going to be in NYC this month? Film Forum’s three-week William Wellman retrospective kicks off today.

William “Wild Bill” Wellman (1896-1975) earned his nickname, enlisting in the Lafayette Flying Corps before America entered the Great War, directing the first-ever Best Picture Oscar-winner, becoming Hollywood’s greatest specialist in aerial adventure, and renowned as well for a quick temper and occasional fisticuffs. But beyond the tough guy and action classics, he helmed some of the greatest of screwball comedies, among works in virtually every other genre; guided signature performances by Barbara Stanwyck, Louise Brooks, Loretta Young, Ginger Rogers, et al.; sensitively portrayed Norman Maine’s disintegration in A Star is Born; directed Cooper, Cagney and Gable in star-defining roles; and in his Pre-Code collaborations with producer Darryl Zanuck at Warner Bros., was the key director of one of the American cinema’s greatest periods.

The festival kick off with weekend screenings of the first movie to win the “Best Picture” Oscar: WINGS (1927), starring Clara Bow, Richard Arlen, and Buddy Rogers.

Here’s the full lineup.

Our favorite New Yorkers: Annie Leibovitz

Annie Leibovitz is one of our favorite New Yorkers. Did we ever tell you she once took our photograph (many film rolls’ worth of photographs, actually)? No? Well, you can read all about it in the story we wrote for Salon.com at the time.

Anyway, we read with avid interest Time Out New York‘s interview with Annie, Why I Love NYC, and it came as no surprise whatsoever that we’re big fans of all six of the sites she cites (well, five out of six—we never had the pleasure of visiting Margaret Bourke-White’s studio on the 61st floor of the Chrysler Building, but we are perfectly willing to take Annie’s word for it that seeing it was an amazing experience).

If you’re traveling to NYC, you could certainly do worse than to visit the five places Annie mentions in the interview. I mean, who wouldn’t want Annie Leibovitz for a tour guide?

All aboard the Nostalgia Train!

Great news! A grand NYC holiday tradition is again renewed as the Nostalgia Train makes its weekly runs once again.

Vintage Semdac advertisementGoldenberg's Peanut Chews advertisementVintage Berkeley Blades advertisementVintage Alka-Seltzer advertisementVintage Burma-Shave advertisementVintage Postum advertisementExterior of vintage subway carInterior of vintage subway carInterior of vintage subway carInterior of vintage subway carVintage subway seatsVintage WNYC-AM advertisementVintage hat advertisementVintage Subway Sun panelVintage Subway Sun panelVintage Subway Sun panelVintage Subway Sun panelVintage Subway Sun panelCelebrate Citizenship DayVintage Subway Sun panelHelpful Hints panelVintage Subway Sun panel
View the Slideshow

What’s the Nostalgia Train, you ask?

Every holiday season in recent years, the good folks at the NYC transit have run the Nostalgia Train, which is made up of subway cars that operated from the 1930s to the 1970s. Not only do train fans and nostalgia buffs get to experience subway cars from another era, but all the ads that line the upper walls of the cars are vintage ones, ranging from the 1930s through the 1960s.

Our first experience with the Nostalgia Train came some years back, on a special express run from midtown to Coney Island on a hot summer day, but it’s even more fun at holiday time.

The train runs on Sundays from 10 a.m. till 5 p.m., November 28 thru December 26, making the same stops as the M train, traveling from the 2nd Avenue station on the Lower East Side to Queens Plaza and back again.

You can catch a ride on these classic R1/9 subway cars at stations along the weekday M Line icon line between Queens Plaza and 2 Av. You can board the train at these stations:

Queens Plaza

• Court Sq-23 St

• Lexington Av/53 St

• 5 Av/53 St

• 47-50 Sts/Rockefeller Center

• 42 St Bryant Park

• 34 St Herald Sq

• 23 St (6 Av)

• 14 St (6 Av)

• W 4 St Wash Sq

• B’way-Lafayette St

• 2 Av

Departures from 2nd Avenue are at: 9:58 a.m., 11:27 a.m., 12:57 p.m., 2:27 p.m., and 3:57 p.m..

Departures from Queens Plaza are at: 10:43 a.m., 12:13 p.m., 1:42 p.m., 3:13 p.m., and 4:43 p.m..

In the past, we’ve donned vintage clothing when riding the nostalgia train, and in a perfect world, everyone else would do the same—think how it would heighten the experience! But if you’re in from out of town and left your vintage wear at home, don’t let that stop you from enjoying this little bit of time travel.

The photos in the slideshow are from a ride we took in December 2008. They’ll give you an idea, we hope, of what a delightful experience the Nostalgia Train is.