What’s On in New York, December 2017

The season is in full swing now – having had Halloween, then Thanksgiving, now we head full tilt to “The Holidays”.  New Yorkers say “Happy Holidays” to be respectful of everyone in this diverse community.  New York kids celebrate Hannakuh, Kwanzaa, and Christmas at school, complete with chorus songs for every occasion.

There’s a bunch going on around town, so make the most of it!

AWNY and associated events include:

Women of Letters evening Wednesday November 29, 6pm for 8pm start at City Winery.  A bunch of ladies have already signed up from the Mums and Dads subgroup.

Scanlan and Theodore’s Fall/Winter Fashion Shopping Event Tuesday December 5, 6pm.  Celebrate with Australia’s intelligent and creative designers in their brand new SoHo store. We’ll be joined by one of the label’s founders and guests will be treated to a private shopping experience showcasing their latest range, with champagne and a holiday gift.

AWNY’s Christmas Luncheon  Friday December 8, 12 noon.  Join friends, old or new, on the 30th Floor at the Club Metropolitan in midtown west for a cocktail on arrival and wonderful three course meal. $60 members $75 non-members (tax and tip included).

Mums and Dads Christmas dinner December 11, 7.30pm, RSVP through Mums and Dads Facebook event page or email awny@aaanyc.org. At Coarse NYC Restaurant, 306 West 13th Street. $49 plus tax and tip.

TRIPLIGHT is a new musical by AWNY members Alexandra Collier (book & lyrics) and Greta Gertler Gold (music & lyrics). Directed by Meghan Finn.
In workshop at The Tank, NYC on December 8 at 2pm and December 9 at 8pm. Tickets: http://www.thetanknyc.org/music/896-triplight/
Triplight follows Willow, a charismatic singer-songwriter and the sole survivor of a 90s indie rock band whose members were all tragically killed just when they were poised on the precipice of fame. Willow is stuck in the past but she’s forced to reemerge and repay her debts when a music DJ unearths her in a New York apartment – where only her ghosts keep her company. ​Triplight is an absurd, funny and dark musical that explores the knife-edge life of an artist, the perils of fame and one woman’s attempt to find her voice in a dying industry, with a score that fuses indie pop, rock and jazz. ​

American Australian Association’s Holiday Reception Monday December 11, 6-9pm at the Australian Consulate.

Around town, rock into the spirit despite the crowds.

Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree:  The Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree is a world-wide symbol of the holidays in New York City.  The 2017 Rockefeller Center Christmas Tree will be lit for the first time on Wednesday, November 29, with live performances from 7–9pm, at Rockefeller Plaza, between West 48th and West 51st Streets and Fifth and Sixth Avenues.  Thousands crowd the sidewalks for the event, and millions watch it live across the globe.  The Tree will remain lit and can be viewed until 9pm on January 7, 2018.  Stop by for a drink and view at The Rainbow Room or visit Polo Bar.  I always find myself at the Lindt shop at 5th and 53rd to at least get some chocolate santas, if not bags and bags of the Lindt balls as gifts for all the people that end up on the list.  They always seem so well received, it’s just a habit now.

You can also get rentals for iceskating at Bryant Park,  Wollman Skating Rink in Central Park, the Standard Hotel in the Meatpacking District,  Lasker in Central Park north, LeFrak Center at Lakeside, Prospect Park and The Rink at Brookfield Place, down town.

In the same area, on Fifth Avenue, are Holiday window displays  at Saks, Tiffany’s, Bergdorfs, Barneys, Henri Bendel’s; and further afield, Bloomingdales and Macys, are also amazing to see.  Some people go every year because these windows are just over the top, and entertainment in themselves – as well as the people standing beside you.  Be warned though, every man and his dog are out there peak times, so choose your timing.

And of course, near to the Tree as well, is the world famous Rockettes at Radio City Hall. Take your guests or kids and be mesmerized by all the lights, glitter and Christmas charm.  You can have your photo taken before or after the show with Santa.  The actual show has The Rockettes dancing around, and tells a child-friendly Christmas story.  Buy a Christmas tree ornament on the way out, a nice gift or souvenir.

Looking for more crafty gifts (not from a department store)?  There are outdoor markets throughout the city.  See Union Square Holiday Market, Columbus Circle Holiday Market  opening around 10 or 11am until 7 or 8pm every day until Christmas Eve.

union square

Union Square Holiday Market

At Carnegie Hall, NY Philharmonic tickets can be $300 for Handel’s Messiah mid December (if you can even still get tickets), but you can also get Oratorio Society seats from $28-$100 at Carnegie around December 18.  If you get tickets at Lincoln Center David Geffen Hall for December 9 you can be one of the 3,000 singing in the chorus.  St Thomas Church also has Messiah with their choir for less than $100.

If you have kids, please take them to the Holiday Train Show.  It is sincerely a real treat for everybody involved, and the Garden is such a nice place to be throughout the year.  It is one of the best family resources in the city.

December 28, 2017, 12-1pm is Good Riddance Day.  At Times Square, you can gather to let go the negative energy of whatever it was in 2017.  Shredit takes over at Times Square Plaza 46, 47 (Broadway between 46th and 47th Streets) to bring on the New Year with joy and freedom.

Times Square is of course, always host to the New Year’s Eve Ball Drop – where people come at 3pm to get a spot for a 6pm start, no public restrooms and freezing cold.  Be amongst the million there, or one of the billion plus people watching it on tv.   My personal favorite (like the Thanksgiving Parade) is to have a friend who has a view to the action – with a bathroom, and catered, even better.

For a view to what is happening for New Year’s Eve, start making plans now.  There’s a silent disco in Bushwick with Aussie Thomas Jack, NYE bike ride from Brooklyn to Belvedere Castle in Central Park, Fireworks at Prospect Park.  Be sure to have a transportation plan.  It is really hard to get around in the city in the cold, so plan ahead.  It’s a busy night.

And, as they say, stay warm!

What’s On in New York – November

From Halloween’s candy and frights, to the Thanksgiving turkey Tryptophan, November launches New York into the festive holiday season. Get ready for some serious eating and drinking as the party invitations start to arrive. Be warned though, you will find the svelte trained up for the New York City Marathon, and you’ll be standing beside those snake hips at the Holiday parties next month.

Here’s what’s on:

October 27, 10am AWNY presents The Emotional Transition of Moving to New York in the East Village. Join a small group of women to discuss the excitement – and hardship – of transition to the City of Cities, led by AWNY’s Susie Lang.

Barton Orchards Farm, 63 Apple Tree Lane, Poughquag NY 12570. Open seasonally, and closed for Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day, this incredible destination is a unique experience to go apple picking (get your apples for the Thanksgiving pie) and see a real NY country farm. For those with children, you will find a haunted house, petting zoo, fun park and corn maze. For everyone else, the apple cider donuts and drinks are authentically rural, and the scenic drive is a beautiful way to pass a leisurely weekend day. A fun weekend to go is October 28 & 29 to capitalize on the Halloween festivities.

November 5 is the TCS NYC Marathon. Download waze.com if you are driving in the city because it’s a hazard to get around by car from E59th up to E138th Street (and traffic congestion beyond). Runners will be blocking your way across town. Walk or use the subway to come out and cheer your fit friends on and celebrate afterwards.

November 9, 12-2pm Congratulations to AWNY President Belinda Jackson for being nominated for the Clara de Hirsch Award for exceptional support of other women in the 92nd Street Y Extraordinary Women Awards.

November 14, 6pm Finances in the USA, Australian Consulate, Midtown East. Tax expert, Martin Cranitch, of Transpacific Tax Services (and previously, the SMATS Group) will speak to Aussie expats living in the USA in relation to taxation and financial planning. $15 members/$25 non-members.

November 23, 9am-12 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade. Where will you be for Thanksgiving this year? If you are in the city, you can plan to see the Parade, which begins at 9am at W77th and Central Park West, and runs down (south) on Central Park West, to Central Park South, and down 6th Avenue, from W59th Street down to Macys Department Store at Herald Square at W34th Street. You can watch from the Mandarin Oriental at Columbus Circle, or the Hilton at W53rd & 6th. Hotels can offer a nice vantage point for viewing if you haven’t found a local friend with a high-floor apartment to afford a good view and bathroom to watch the spectacle. Or watch it on TV like most of America.

November 24 Sample sales. If you haven’t hit the phenomenon of NYC’s sample sales, you may want to have a look. There are also online sales of course, and THE most massive shopping day of the year being Black Friday, the day after Thanksgiving, where everyone gets online after feasting, or gets out and about in the shops, to actively seize the very best of the year’s buys before the Holiday onslaught of ultimate consumerism.

November 29, 7pm-9pm Rockefeller Center Tree Lighting Ceremony, with live performances, between W48th and W51st Streets, and 5th and 6th Avenues. Put on your coat and come out with the crowd if you haven’t ever done it yet, to see the celebration of the big tree at Rockefeller Center. Arrive early (very early) if you want to see the tree. Each year, thousands crowd the sidewalks and streets and millions watch it live across the globe. It will remain lit until January 7, 2018 and represents goodwill and peace throughout the Holiday season.


Event: Fall Gala at the Dwelling Place of NY, October 19

The Dwelling Place of NY is AWNY’s charity partner for 2017. Please join us for their annual Fall Gala, with all proceeds supporting their wonderful work.

The night promises to be a whole lot of fun for a great cause, with The Dwelling Place celebrating 40 years on 40th Street at this year’s event.

Event details

Date: Thursday, October 19, 2017
Time: 6.00pm – 9.00pm
Location: Saints Cyril and Methodius Hall, corner of 41st Street and 10th Avenue, New York
Cost: $125 per person. 100% will go directly to The Dwelling Place, plus a $6 booking fee through Eventbrite.
Nature of event: The Gala will be a simple church hall style gathering, with everything from decorations and raffle prizes, to food and wine donated
Tickets: To ensure you are sat at an AWNY table, please follow the instructions below:

  • First, visit the ticket sales site and write the word “AUSSIE” next to your name when purchasing.
  • Then, email Bridget Callaghan to advise you have purchased your ticket(s). This will help to ensure you’re sat on the AWNY table.

Buy tickets (don’t forget to write AUSSIE…)

AWNY’s 2017 Charity: The Dwelling Place of NY

The Dwelling Place of NY is a privately-funded transitional residence for homeless women run by The Franciscan Sisters of Allegany. Located in Midtown, The Dwelling Place has provided shelter, sustenance and support to thousands of women since 1977. Their safe, healing, and structured environment offers women the space and time to develop a sustainable plan for building a healthy, independent lifestyle.

This year’s Gala is celebrating The Dwelling Place’s 40th year on 40th Street.

Visit their website to read more about their wonderful work: http://thedwellingplaceofny.org/.


The AWNY gals at the 2016 Fall Gala showed the other guests how to have a good time with a round of “Aussie Aussie Aussie, Oi, Oi, Oi!”

Another way you can help

AWNY is proudly supporting The Dwelling Place source donations for their charity raffle that will take place at the Fall Gala. If you or someone you know is willing to make a donation we’d love to hear from you. Examples of donations include:

  • Gift cards or vouchers
  • Flowers
  • Homewares
  • Beauty products
  • Jewellry

All donators will be promoted through our AWNY social media accounts and will be included in announcements on the evening.

If you are able to support this worthy cause with a donation please contact Bridget Callaghan.


What’s On in New York – September 2017

September…time to enjoy the final blast of summer days with cooler mornings and evenings before the cold sweeps through the streets. So get out there and eat al fresco, enjoy the rooftop bars, run through the parks and enjoy the great outdoors during this beautiful transitional month.

US Open Tennis Championship 
1 September – 10 September
Be quick, the US Open is on now at the USTA Billie Jean King National Tennis Center in Flushing, Queens.  Favorite players will include Venus Williams, Caroline Wozniacki Roger Federer and Rafael Nadal.  Click here to get tickets. Prices vary.

NYC Broadway Week
4 September – 17 September
Broadway buffs…act now!  Get two tickets for the price of one, or get upgraded seats for select shows. Not all shows participate and tickets are subject to availability. Blackout dates apply. Use the code BWAYWK for 2-for-1 tickets or opt for upgraded seats using BWAYUP.

Fall Ballet Season
19 September – 1 October
Are you “Team White Swan” or “Team Black Swan”? To answer the eternal question, it’s time to see Swan Lake performed by the New York City Ballet.  Attending the ballet at the David Koch Theatre at the Lincoln Centre will be a memorable experience, so slip into your ballet flats and treat yourself! Tickets are available here.

9/11 Memorial
This year marks the 16th anniversary of this solemn occasion. There will be a commemorative Tribute in Light. From dusk through dawn, two majestic blue beams of light will be projected into the sky and will be visible up to 60 miles away. The Memorial Plaza is closed on 9/11 to the public until 3pm.

San Gennaro Festival in Little Italy  
14 September – 24 September
If you ever needed an excuse to visit Little Italy, here it is. Located on Mulberry Street in the heart of Little Italy, there will be parades, religious processions, carnival rides, live music, and maybe a little pizza and gelato. Did you know more than a million people visit the San Gennaro festival over the course of this 11-day festival? If you can’t make it, order a pizza from Seamless and watch the Godfather 2 instead.

16 September – 2 October 
Oktoberfest in September? Yep….because its gets cold next month….and October is for ROCKtober, in my opinion. Oktoberfest celebrations take place in all five boroughs in New York at various public spaces and beer gardens. The largest events include:

  1. Oktoberfest in Central Park (16 September)
  2. Munich on the East River (29 September – 8 October)
  3. Watermark’s Oktoberfest (Sept 15–17, Sept 22–24, Sept 29–Oct 2)

Dust off your lederhosen, find your old beer stein and prepare for some carb consumption.

Fall Foliage
Just a quick note about the foliage season, if you are making plans to go leaf-peeping during October. The best viewing for foliage changes in Vermont, New Hampshire, Maine and Mass is generally during the second week of October as the colder weather starts earlier in those states. The foliage will then turn during the subsequent four weeks in New York State as winter weather approaches.

Have a wonderful September, and a final note….Offspring: Season 7 will become available on 13 September on Netflix 🙂

What’s on in New York, August 2017

We hope you’ve been out enjoying the gorgeous Summer weather, surviving the school holidays and making the most of the (hopefully) quieter time at work to get out of the city. With only 47 days left of Summer its time to take advantage of the outdoors in August with Manhattan’s Summer Streets and The US Open just a few of the great events to check out with our AWNY wrap up below…

Enjoy! – The AWNY Communications Team

Every summer (and winter, for that matter), NYC Restaurant Week returns with dining deals at restaurants all across New York, more than 380 restaurants offer three-course pre-fixe dining deals for both lunch ($29) and dinner ($42). The summer session runs through Friday, August 18, 2017 reservations available here.

Summer Streets is back! On Saturday, August 12 and 19th between the hours of 7 am and 1 pm, nearly seven miles of New York City’s streets are open to the public to play, run, walk and bike. Find out more here.

Don’t miss your chance to see major artists in shows devoted to Bollywood musicals, Eastern European and Central Asian folk music and dance, and West African and West Indian carnival culture at Lincoln Center Out of Doors on up until August 13.

Yet to make it to a Baseball game? The Subway Series is a series of  Major League Basketball games played between the two teams based in New York City, the Yankees and the Mets. Previously, this applied to the Giants and Dodgers as well, before they moved out of New York City. Every historic and current venue for such games has been accessible via the New York City Subway, hence the name of the series. So whether you’ve adopted Yankee blue or Mets orange or you’re just there for the hot dogs and beer, it’s sure to be a good day out at Citi Field between August 14-17.

Iconic Aussie rock bands Midnight Oil & The Living End team up for a show in Hells Kitchen on August 21st tickets available.

The Jazz Age Lawn Party is returning to Governor’s Island on August 26 & 27. Sip on Prohibition-era cocktails during incredible daylong jazz performances from Philadelphia’s prized Drew Nugent and the Midnight Society, as well as singer-songwriter Queen Esther. Get a bunch of friends together and dress up in 1920’s attire for an unforgettable experience.

Tennis fan? Head to flushing and tick the US Open off your NYC bucket list! August 28 to September 10.

On August 28 join the AAA at the Brooklyn Brewery for ‘Science on Tap’ an evening of astronomy with astrophysicist, Nobel Prize laureate and ANU Vice-Chancellor and President Professor Brian Schmidt, Assistant Deputy Associate Administrator and Deputy Program Manager, Space Communications and Navigation NASA HQ Philip Liebrecht and AMNH Associate Research Scientist, Lehman College Professor and Host/Writer of PBS Space Time Professor Matthew O’Dowd. Networking and meat pies by The Australian to follow the panel discussion.

Photo credit of Summer Streets: NYC-Arts.org