Winter in Park Slope is nothing short of idyllic. The lights, the shop windows, and the food all invite us to celebrate the season. If you have something you would like to share, send it to us at firstname.lastname@example.org
A Friendly Sing-Along
Little Nut Tree by Dan Zanes
[Festival Five Records]
Little Nut Tree is Dan Zane’s first album in five years after the release of his 2007 Grammy-winning Catch That Train. Everything about the new album is fun and eclectic. Starting with the colorful artwork on the CD packaging itself, which is designed like a colorful board book, to the styles and rhythms of the music. Enlisting the help of renowned musicians like Andrew Bird, Joan Osborne, Sharon Jones and the Sierra Leone Refugee All Stars, Little Nut Tree is filled with “family music,” the songs are meant to appeal to parents as well as children. The musical landscapes move around the globe with the Jamaican sound of the title track, to folk and songs with a more Middle Eastern influence, to the R&B classic “Down In the Basement.” The English shanty “John Kanakanka” is a catchy and sure-fire sing-along. You can catch Dan live at the Kaufman Center in Manhattan on January 10th. For more dates, visit www.danzanes.com as this Brooklyn native frequently performs close to home.
Party Like A House Elf
Harry Potter Yule Ball at the Bell House
149 Seventh Street
December 17 5pm
This year the Bell House invites you to don your dress robes and join other Potter fans for a holiday celebration. The Yule Ball is a night where wizards and muggles can mingle while Harry & The Potters, along with other acts including Draco & The Malfoys and Terror Pigeon Dance Revolt! supply the entertainment. It’s a night of fantastic revelry, an opportunity to partake of your favorite potion and celebrate the season in style. A portion of each ticket price benefits the non-profit organization, The Harry Potter Alliance, which “brings Harry Potter fans together to fight the dark arts here in the muggle world” by encouraging members to use their own creativity towards making the world a better place. You can learn more and order tickets on the Bell House’s webiste,
Support the Arts
440 Gallery hosts the 7th Annual Small Works Show
440 Sixth Avenue
December 8 through January 8
In its seventh year, the Annual Small Works Show has become a winter tradition. The artist-operated 440 Gallery offers an eclectic selection of artwork submitted from around the country. Each piece measures no more than 12” in any dimension, making for the perfect gift or accent for your home. With this event, 440 Gallery provides a wonderful introduction to new artists and the opportunity for you to become a patron of the arts. This year’s show is juried by Sara P. Mintz, Associate Director at Cynthia-Reeves Contemporary Fine Art Gallery in New York. Each year, as the show becomes more renowned the artwork submitted becomes more diverse, ranging in a wide variety of mediums. Stop by the gallery now to see the show and reserve your favorite piece. For more information visit www.440gallery.com.
Perfect Paw Protection
Protex PAWZ Natural Rubber Dog Boots
Inclement weather always poses a bit of a problem with dog walking. Although my beloved mutt is a hardy breed, walking after a storm or ice can be perilous. The cold and snow don’t pose the biggest problems; instead it’s the salt and de-icers that create the biggest headaches. We have tried a variety of dog boots, which provide a few minutes of entertainment as my dog duck walks around until he kicks them off, but they don’t make it out to the sidewalks. We try and avoid the areas that look salted, but a mis-step renders my dog limping and crying in pain. Finally, last year we discovered PAWZ. These reusable rubber boots not only provide protection, but prove to be a simple solution. Looking like balloons, these rubber boots are easy to put on and take off. They not only stay on, but seem to be less strange for your dog’s natural gait. Durable, they handle the sidewalk tread and dogs’ claws. Sold in sets of 12, there are extras if one gets lost along the way or develop a hole. If you’re feeling industrious, holes can be patched up easily with electrical tape. PAWZ come in sizes to fit any breed and are sold at pet stores throughout the area.
Blackout by John Rocco
Your children may not be old enough to remember the night all of New York City went dark, but John Rocco does. In his book, Blackout, the renowned illustrator not only recreates it, but he does so through the eyes of a child. With curiosity and wonder, our hero watches as the neighborhood and city go dark. In the darkness, a family comes together to explore, play games and greet neighbors. John Rocco’s illustrations beautifully capture downtown Brooklyn during this magical evening. We see all of the elements that make the borough unique: the river, bridges, skyline, rooftops, stoops and street scenes. It makes not just for a great story, but acts as a reminder of the importance of shared family time.