Ithaca Blog

Friday, September 30, 2011

Singing Dog at Apple Fest

This weekend is the 29th annual Apple Festival in Ithaca, and what could be more wholesome?

It is a last opportunity to get out and party with your peoples before the cold weather sets in.

It is also an opportunity to see a singing dog. The closing act of all the entertainment, Sunday at 3:30, are Jomo and Johnnycake. They are humans, but Johnny also has a small dog, who enjoys performing, and can approximate singing. They almost made it onto the David Letterman show once, a happenstance I believe we chronicled here on Ithaca Blog.

So, don't start off fall season with regrets. Music, food, and entertainment await you on the Ithaca Commons and surrounding streets, from today through Sunday.

Steve Burke
for Ithaca NY Blog

Monday, September 26, 2011

NY Times Versus You and Woody Guthrie

We are following the demonstrations on Wall Street as avidly as possible, with the paucity of coverage in mainstream corporate media.

We got a kick out of this lead in the NY Times:

"Demonstrators who occupied Wall Street had many causes but seemed to have one thing in common: a lack of hard knowledge about the system they were fighting."

It reminded us of a quote by Woody Guthrie about music in the media, specifically, but really about the powers behind the media (substitute the word "story" for "song"):

"I hate a song that makes you think you are not any good. I hate a song that makes you think you are just born to lose...

"I am out to fight those songs...I am out to sing songs that will prove to you that this is your world and if it has hit you pretty hard... I am out to sing the songs that will make you take pride in yourself and your work... [not] the kind that knock you down still farther and the ones that poke fun at you even more and the ones that make you think you've not got any sense at all."

Stephen Burke
for Ithaca NY Blog

Monday, September 19, 2011

Wall Street As Tahrir Square

Thousands of protesters have mobilized on Wall Street in New York City, modeling themselves on the protesters in Tahrir Square in Cairo who brought on a peaceful revolution against Egypt's leadership earlier this year.

The protest is slightly under-reported in the mainstream media. One of New York's leading papers, the Post, called it a "fizzle,"  because the protest is only many times larger than typical Tea Party events, which the Post covers with zeal.

The NY Daily News does not mention the protest at all, or at least not prominently enough to notice on their on-line edition. The leading story in the News today is about two boys in central Europe who claim to be human magnets.

The Wall Street protesters have gathered there to protest crimes in the financial markets, which are rarely punished by jail time, or in fact by anything other than small fines which are easily made up in the next fiscal year of malfeasance. They are protesting a system in which the top 400 citizens have more money than over the half the population - over 140 million -  combined. They are protesting a poverty rate of 46 million people, and unemployment of 25 million.

The number of people protesting right now, live on Wall Street, is small. But so was the number in Tahrir Square, at first.

Stephen Burke
for Ithaca NY Blog

Thursday, September 15, 2011

"Festival For Peace" This Weekend

Ithaca is a town of festivals, and of peace-lovers, and this weekend the two combine with the International Festival For Peace, at St. Catherine of Sienna's church in Cayuga Heights.

There will be arts and crafts, tabling by groups, speakers, food, and music. Participating musicians include Sim Redmond Band, Samite, and Revision, among others.

The festival is on Saturday and Sunday. For more information, call 257-2493.

Steve Burke
for Ithaca NY Blog

Monday, September 12, 2011

Vote in the Democratic Primary, Tuesday 13 Sept.

Yes, it's here already: the primary vote for the Democratic candidate for mayor for this November's general election.

Tuesday 13 September is the date. Polls are open from noon until 9 p.m.

It is sure to be a tight vote, with a slate of worthy candidates - J.R. Clairborne, Pam Mackesey, and Svante Myrick - each with a strong constituency. So, make sure your vote is part of the certain slim margin.

Steve Burke
for Ithaca NY Blog

Saturday, September 10, 2011

AIDS Ride For Life: Join the Riders For Dinner

The AIDS Ride For Life bike event takes place today in Ithaca, and surrounding roadways.

The event draws hundreds of riders who raise hundreds of thousands of dollars for AIDS research and care.

At ride's end, at 5 p.m., the participants convene in Cass Park, then take a "victory ride" through town, to Stewart Park, where there is a dinner.

The dinner is open to the public. Tickets are $5 and are available at Stewart Park.

Steve Burke
for Ithaca NY Blog

Saturday, September 03, 2011

Seneca Big Splash: Big Bash to Fight Fracking

Sunday 4 September brings one of the biggest events yet to fight unsafe gas drilling in our region.

The Seneca Big Splash features 10 bands on 2 stages. Musicians include that ubiquitous Evil City String Band, with Willie Watson of Old Crow Medicine Show (an area native); plus the Burns Sisters, Sara  Guthrie, and Jim Lauderdale.

The event goes from 11 a.m til 9 p.m. at the Hector Fairgrounds, just north of Watkins Glen at Rt. 414. See the attatched link for details.

There is a website for the event at

Seneca Big Splash

Stephen Burke
for Ithaca NY Blog

Labor Day Bash, Free Music and Food, Stewart Park

You can see what you will see if you see Evil City String Band in Brooklyn, in October (see previous post) by seeing ECSB on Monday at the free Labor Day picnic at Stewart Park.

You are invited to bring something to share, while the Tompknis County Workers Center provides free burgers and franks (including non-meat varieties) and soft drinks.

Evil City String Band performs at the Large Pavilion in the park. The event runs from 11 a.m til 3 p.m.

Steve Burke
for Ithaca NY Blog