The Briefly for December 26, 2019 – The "Christmas Trees Don't Belong on the Beach" Edition
Today - Low: 42˚ High: 45˚
Mostly cloudy throughout the day.
A look back at the City Hall Christmas tree lighting, a bygone NYC tradition. (Alexandra Alexa for 6sqft) The Rockefeller Center Christmas has an 88-year history. (Adam Thalenfeld for NYC Urbanism) Video: The inspiring story of Sydney Mesher, the first Rockette with a visible disability. (The Rockettes) Videos and Photos: The Saks Fifth Avenue Frozen 2 holiday lights. (Jen Carlson for Gothamist) How long should you keep your Christmas tree up? At least until January 6, because that's the first day of the Department of Sanitation's tree disposal. (Mariela Quintana for StreetEasy) Video: No matter what you read on Facebook, don't leave your old Christmas tree at the beach. (Anginas Gonzalez for NY1) Tompkins Square Park has some new trees. (EV Grieve) Governor Cuomo vetoed a bill that would have allowed federal judges, Trump's judges, to officiate weddings in New York state. I guess federal judges will have to become online ministers if they want to officiate weddings, just like the rest of us. (Jesse McKinley for NY Times) The fascinating history of 28 Old Fulton St, from old Dutch farmland to Revolutionary War battle site, from the Eagle pressroom to a warehouse for silver, furniture and then electoral ballots, to its latest use as luxury apartments. (Chase DiBenedetto for Bedford + Bowery) Years ago two toy stores within a few blocks of each other would be at war around the holidays, but in 2019 Stationary and Toy World and West Side Kids in the Upper West Side are joining forces to fight back against online shopping. (Sara Lewin Lebwohl for I Love the Upper West Side) Video: Got $75,000 lying around? You can afford one night at the Mark Hotel. (Matt Coneybeare for Viewing NYC) With the mayor's potentially illegal "horse trading" collusion with ultra-Orthodox state lawmakers surrounding a Department of Education report about the quality of education at the city's yeshivas, advocates are calling for accountability. The city has made no indication of punishment for the 26 of 28 failing schools, instead requiring "timelines for improvement" by January 15 with no information about if schools fail to meet the deadline. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist) A state Supreme Court judge has struck down an upcoming New York City rule that would have restricted the amount of time app-based drivers for companies like Uber and Lyft can spend cruising without passengers below 96th Street in Manhattan. (Elizabeth Kim for Gothamist) Profiles of five African-American high-profile prisoners from New York City who were convicted of violent crimes that included murder and attempted murder. All committed their first crimes as teenagers. All are now in late middle age, ranging from 48 to 61 and seeking release. A great piece from students at CUNY's Craigs Newmark Graduate School of Journalism. (Stephanie Chukwuma, Trone Dowd, Jeffery Harrell, Brenda León, Hannah Miller, Rosemary Misdary, Rachel Rippetoe, Maria Robins-Somerville, Sean Sanders, and Annie Todd for Gothamist) 8 cultural attractions to visit on NYC's Museum Mile. (Zachary Solomon for StreetEasy) StreetEasy and Douglas Elliman appear to be ready to lock horns. While the details aren't exciting, it could portend a coming fracturing of real estate listings. (E. B. Solomont for The Real Deal) A train delay because of a pencil. (Ben Yakas for Gothamist) A Bronx police officer is facing accusations of groping a 14-year-old teenager while she was handcuffed in the back of a squad car last month. (Jake Offenhartz for Gothamist) Christmas is gone. No literally, Christmas is literally buried in Green-Wood Cemetery. (Kevin Walsh for Forgotten New York) The city doesn't just get rid of its useless junk, it auctions it off. (Winnie Hu and James Sprankle for NY Times) What's the opposite of a Christmas miracle? Ask the 1,000 residents in NYCHA housing in Coney Island who woke up with no heat or hot water on Christmas. (Sydney Pereira for Gothamist) As of this week, bicyclists can use the walk/won't walk indicators rather than the lights are use. (Christopher Robbins for Gothamist) The latest in the seemingly never-ending battle of Industry City's rezoning is that things are looking bleak for Industry City after the city is refusing to provide funds for new schools, housing and tenant programs to benefit the neighborhood. The decision to move forward rests with City Councilmember Carlos Menchaca, who has been skeptical of the process since the start. It would be unheard of for the city to commit funds for a private application, Menchaca is justifying the request based on how dramatically the rezoning would change Sunset Park. (Rose Adams for Brooklyn Paper) Has Midtown South become more pleasant for residents in the last few years? Finally, an answer to the eternal question of "who lives here?" (Aileen Jacobson for NY Times) There is an entire underground economy centered around plastic bottle and metal can deposits, where the world turns five cents at a time. It's all in a legal gray area that the city turns a blind eye towards, but once you have an understanding of how the canner economy works, you can understand why there is opposition to expanding the five cent deposit program. (Andy Newman for NY Times) After eating at 300 restaurants this year, Scott Lynch picks his 16 best bites of 2019. (Scott Lynch for Eater)