Thursday, April 28, 2011

The Royal Wedding: A Musical Twist Thanks to T-Mobile

You can go watch the Royal Wedding from Times Square, turn on CNN and every other news channel, or hop a jet to join the throngs already camped out on the sidewalks in London. Or, hey, take a look at this fun video -- great lookalikes, don't you think?

Friday, April 22, 2011

More Earth Day Celebrations in the US: Atlanta, Boston, Chicago, Memphis, Minneapolis, Washington DC


Races are popular for Earth Day and Atlanta’s Green Dash is a 5K that benefits Piedmont Park Conservancy. The race takes place on April 23 at 8:30am and is part of the 53 More Acres to Love Campaign.


Help Boston clean-up on April 29 and 30 with Boston Shines. Volunteers will scour the city, ridding it of garbage and other unsightliness. Thank you, Mayor Menino.


Chicago’s 2nd annual 5k for Earth Day Run/Walk is set in historic Humboldt Park on April 23, with race registration beginning at 7am. Check out the free Green Living Expo in the park as well


Through April 23, Shelby Farms Park will be highlighting the meaning of green with features like the annual green-tie fundraiser, SkyFest kite festival, and Woodland Discovery Playground egg hunt.

Minneapolis/St. Paul

The Twin Cities 10th Anniversary Living Green Expo affair celebrates the latest in green and sustainable living on May 7-8. At the Minnesota State Fairgrounds, the Expo will showcase more than 300 exhibitors, workshops and demos. Celebrate one lucky couple’s special day with a Green Wedding, enjoy the Eco-Parade, and learn how to save money, time and the Earth.

Washington, DC

Join the Earth Day party April 22 at the Smithsonian National Zoo from 10am-12Noon. Talk to the Zoo’s Green Team about their environmental achievements and see how sustainability has changed the animal exhibits, food service, water use and even the coffee. Friends of the National Zoo has partnered with an outside company to collect and recycle visitors’ electronics, so bring your old batteries and phones to support conservation.

Monday, April 18, 2011

Happy Passover -- Must-Watch Google Exodus Video

Happy Passover -- Social Media and the Internet Meet Exodus -- Hilarious!

Sunday, April 17, 2011

Earth Day Celebrations around North America: Dallas, New Orleans, San Diego, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Toronto

2011 Earth Day celebrations begin this weekend, with the actual day unfortunately coinciding with Good Friday April 22. We’ve selected some interesting activities in North America where you can contribute to the wellness of the world:


Earth Day Dallas 2011 puts a southern spin on going green with a two-day eco-extravaganza, located in the heart of Dallas’ Arts District. The festival will be held on April 22-23 and includes a speaker series, free Earth Day yoga classes at the Crow Museum, Dallas Film Society sponsored environmental short films, street performers, food trucks brimming with delicious organic and locally grown treats, an amazing line-up of music and much more.

New Orleans

The New Orleans Earth Day Festival & Green Business Expo was first organized in 2009 in response to local residents’ interest in sustaining and protecting their environment. Join in on Sunday, April 17 for the only event in the area that focuses exclusively on environmental sustainability for the local community, organizations and businesses. Highlights include an environmental landmark bike tour, yoga by the Bayou, food, beer, vendors, crafts and fun for the whole family. Located at Bayou St. John on Orleans Avenue.

San Diego

Celebrate the 22nd annual Earth Fair event, on April 17, in Balboa Park and you can say that you have attended the largest free environmental fair in the world. Indulge with deliciously unheard of vegetarian munchies while watching the Children’s Earth Parade or take a look at the eARTh gallery features using recycled materials as art. “Car people” should stop by the Pan American Plaza to check out the alternatively fueled hybrids. The event is free of charge.

San Francisco

Get a taste of the greenest museum in the world this Earth Day for a two-day celebration at the California Academy of Sciences. On April 22 and 23 you can educate yourself about sustainability and conservation with a packed schedule of family fun events and themed programs. Check out how a local company makes eco-friendly custom bike frames, learn new energy saving tips and technologies from the Pacific Gas and Electric Company experts, and if you’re really feeling daring, Save the Frogs! Location at 55 Music Concourse Dr. in Golden Gate Park.

Los Angeles

The 12th annual Topanga Earth Day festival, set in Topanga Canyon, returns this year from April 22-24. The event kicks off Friday with an evening wine tasting and art gallery opening, followed by fun-filled Saturday and Sunday events that last until sunset. It’s authentic, innovative, so L.A., and offers a free bio-diesel shuttle to and from the festival. The grounds are located at the Topanga Community House Fair Grounds, 1440 North Topanga Canyon Blvd.


This year, Toronto’s Botanical Gardens are holding an exciting day of tours and friendly competition on April 21. Become a participant and join in the TBG Rain Barrel Design Competition to raise funds for the gardens. Take some time to meander through the gardens, free of charge, and at the end of your visit pick up some freshly dug perennials straight from TBG growers. To spread your earthly love throughout April, get involved in some of TBG’s on-site, nature-themed programs located at 777 Lawrence Avenue East.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Hints of Summer? 2 Openings Today in NYC: Luna Park at Coney Island and Tavern on the Green Food Truck Terrace

It may not feel like summer, but we can dream a bit. Today's "hint of summer" openings include Luna Park and the Cyclone at Coney Island. And the new Tavern on the Green Food Truck Terrace in Central Park, complete with free food and free music, TODAY. Check out the wonderful ice cream menu on the Van Leeuwen Ice Cream truck in the photo -- yum!

I'm ready for summer -- can't wait to go running on the reservoir in Central Park and biking the Great Hill.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Hotel Elysee and Martini Week Want Everyone to Celebrate like "Mad Men" This Year

Now that Mad Men’s fifth season has been delayed, there are two things we’re in desperate need of: Don Draper and a cocktail. Don may be a bit out of our reach, but fortunately New York City's Hotel Elysée has a wonderful “Mad Men” package to fill in the void, at least conceptually. As for the cocktail, we can live like the men of Madison Avenue (for less) and celebrate Thrillist’s second annual Martini Week through April 17.
The Hotel Elysée’s Mad Men package brings us into a world of elegance that Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce would love. Imagine standing next to Don at the front desk as you check in to your luxurious European-style suite, seductively appointed with a dozen red roses, strawberries and a four-piece box of Leonidas chocolates. The romantic feeling continues with two complimentary cocktails to enjoy either at the scene-y Monkey Bar (where Duck and Peggy probably imbibed after their romp in the hotel) or in your suite. You will also receive a 10% discount if you decide to dine in this iconic restaurant with its gorgeous signature murals of NYC celebrities. Oysters Rockefeller and lobster Thermidor are a must if you’re channeling Roger and Joan. The package, which gives you a 15% discount off a suite and is based on availability, runs throughout the year and satisfies from morning to evening with daily continental breakfast and a cocktail and hors d’oeuvre reception each week night.
60 East 54th Street, Manhattan; 212-753-1066;
Mad Men meets modernity with 2011 takes on popular favorites during New York City Martini Week. Ones that caught our fancy right off include Aspen Social’s Bombay Basil and Grizzly Pear (157 West 47th St, 212-956-7020); Oceana’s Capri and Madam Butterfly (120 West 49th St, 212-759-5941); Public’s Cucumber & Lemon and Aztec Orange (210 Elizabeth St, 212-343-7011); Tao’s Zen Jewel and The Tanuki (42 East 58th St, 212-888-2288)-; Two E Bar at The Pierre’s - Expressed Bombay and Pierre Aviation (2 East 61st St, 212-940-8113); and Volstead’s Negroni and The Pear Blossom (125 East 54th St, 212-583-0411). For the full list of participating bars and their cocktails, visit

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Cherry Blossom Mania in Washington, DC

Reading our last post about cherry blossom festivals around the US inspired guest blogger Jennifer Sherwin to offer her personal observations about the "mother" of all cherry blossom festivals, DC. Travel and Food Notes welcomes Jennifer Sherwin.

After spending a fabulous semester in Washington, D.C. during my undergraduate studies, I naturally became obsessed with the cherry tree and its perfect pink blossoms. When one of my best friends came to visit me, we spent an entire weekend prancing around the city in some sort of sakura frenzy. Wisconsin Avenue. Check. Festival by the National Mall. Check. Japanese Street Festival. Check. Dumbarton Oaks. Check. When the weekend was complete, I was unsure if either of us thought we could ever look at anything pink again.

Things we learned during our Tour de Pink:

-During the Japanese Street Festival, portions are huge but no street food compares to the Bulgogi Cart at 14th Street and L Street. Make the trek. You won’t regret it.

-Be a tourist and walk up Washington Avenue to see the incredible National Cathedral. There are tons of perfect photo stops with the cherry trees along the way.

-With plenty of cherry blossoms everywhere and tons of free events, you will be at no shortage of cherry lovin’, but there are two stops that are definitely worth the admission:

a) Words can do no justice for the famous private gardens at Dumbarton Oaks in Georgetown. Friends, if you’re ever looking for a place to propose, this is the place. The Rose Garden is divided up by color (pinks, reds, whites, oranges, yellows) and is pure perfection. Stroll over to Cherry Hill and be taken away to a world of beauty where the blossoms literally fly around like snowflakes.

b) Remind yourself that there are other gorgeous flowers aside from the cherry blossoms and venture over to the National Botanical Garden. It’s a nice breather from hanami, and the orchids are to die for.

During the National Cherry Blossom Festival, the whole city gives in to the infatuation, and many foodie hotspots use the sakura as inspiration for new menu items and specialty cocktails. Here’s a few of my favorites:

-Adour (923 16h St. NW) Pink cherry flavored macaroons with cherry marmalade filling

-Co Co. Sala (929 F St. NW) Chocolate Cherry Cordial-dark chocolate and cherry financier with morello cherry gelato and cherry blossom yogurt bon bon $12

-Georgetown Cupcake (3301 M St. NW) Cherry Blossom cupcake $2.75

-Georgia Brown’s (950 15th St. NW) Cherry Blossom Sangria $10

-Jaleo (480 7th St. NW) Cherry-Sherry Martini $12 and Gazpacho de cerezas $6.50

-Mie N Yu (3125 M St. NW) Cherry Blossom cocktail $9

-Palette at Loews Madison Hotel (1177 15th St. NW) Bing Cherry-Cured Wild Alaskan Salmon Sashimi with Cherry Blossom Essence Jasmin Rice $12 Appetizer/$23 Entrée

-Urbana (2121 P Street) Roasted lamb with celery root puree and cherry lamb jus $28

-Vidalia (1990 M St. NW) Cherry Pie $11.50