I Spy at The Museum of Interesting Things Secret Speakeasy

The Museum of Interesting Things Secret Speakeasy is a traveling, interactive exhibition of antiques, collectibles, and inventions. The focus of the speakeasy is to inspire innovation and creativity. This is achieved through interaction with relics from our past. In many cases, the audience are full-on participants. They assist in unveiling the newest acquisitions, offer their own anecdotes about particular items, and ask insightful questions. Interaction at a secret speakeasy, whether with people or objects, is encouraged. Save for a few exceptions, audience members are entirely welcome to touch the items on display.

The Museum of Interesting Things Secret Speakeasy is presented by its inimitable host, Denny Daniel. He’s the curator and founder of the museum. If you are wondering what the show is like, the general ballpark is a robust mix of Barnum and Baily, Pawn Stars, and Antiques Roadshow. So, in other words, prepare to be entertained.

Please keep in mind that the secret speakeasy has been known to change venues last-minute. We strongly recommended that you check the website before the event. Typically, though, the speakeasy is held at The Loft in Soho at 177 Prince Street. Keep in mind, each month the programming changes to focus on a specific theme, so make sure to join the email list to see what is offered each month. This month’s theme is I Spy: Spy, Cipher, Crime, and Communication Tech.

For a preview of the event, read about our experience visiting a prior speakeasy here.

Museum Day Presented by Smithsonian Magazine

Museum Day is an annual one-day event hosted by Smithsonian Magazine, celebrating museums and cultural institutions across the entire country. This year’s Museum Day will be held on Saturday, September 22, 2018.

Through their partnership with Microsoft, Smithsonian Magazine generously offers free admission to a participating museum or cultural institution for any ticket holder plus one guest. Museum Day is the perfect answer to that relentlessly repetitive question: What are we doing this weekend? Well, you now have the answer for at least one Saturday in September.

IMPORTANT NOTES: Museum Day tickets were made available on August 15, 2018. Tickets go fast, so make sure you get yours now. Only one ticket for one museum or cultural institution is provided per registered email address, so choose wisely! To review the list of participating locations in each state and to reserve your tickets, click here.

If you’re looking for some New York City-based recommendations, we have included some posts we wrote below offering some insights into our favorite institutions, all of which are participating locations for this year’s Museum Day.

Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum

Museum of Illustration at the Society of Illustrators

The Rubin Museum of Art

Museum of Chinese in America

Fraunces Tavern Museum

Photoville Presented by United Photo Industries

Now in its 7th year, Photoville is the largest annual photographic event in New York City. Free and open to the public (all ages and pet-friendly), this immersive photography festival presented by United Photo Industries showcases the work of over 600 visual artists, in conjunction with over 100 curatorial partners, and offers photographers of all stripes the opportunity to come together and interact with a large, diverse audience.

Some of the Photoville’s highlights include nighttime projection programs, hands-on workshops, an eduction day for New York City middle and high school students, panel discussions and talks, tents with vendors, family-friendly photo activities, publishers and gear demonstrations, a community photo book store, tintype portraits, and a beer garden with a range of food vendors supported by Smorgasburg and Brooklyn Brewery.

As in previous years, Photoville will be located in Brooklyn Bridge Park in DUMBO, transforming Brooklyn Bridge Plaza into an incredible modular galleries consisting of a network of more than 65 re-purposed shipping containers.

If you’re looking for the inside scoop, check out our post on last year’s Photoville here.

You can find general information about Photoville here, including directions, FAQ, and hours of operation.

Mad Chatter: Let’s Talk About Fact And Fiction, Truth and Lies

So here’s something I’ve been thinking about lately. I’ve never been a fan of The Bachelor or The Bachelorette, but I’ve become mildly obsessed with a scripted satirical series derived from similar reality shows called UnREAL. The series ended its run recently, which made it a perfect candidate for binge watching. UnREAL isn’t easy to digest, and it features some pretty despicable characters. But it forces us to confront something we’ve all been complicit in: allowing truth and fiction to meld together to create an entertaining narrative.

Continue reading Mad Chatter: Let’s Talk About Fact And Fiction, Truth and Lies

Photoville Presented by United Photo Industries

Now in its 7th year, Photoville is the largest annual photographic event in New York City. Free and open to the public (all ages and pet-friendly), this immersive photography festival presented by United Photo Industries showcases the work of over 600 visual artists, in conjunction with over 100 curatorial partners, and offers photographers of all stripes the opportunity to come together and interact with a large, diverse audience.

Some of the Photoville’s highlights include nighttime projection programs, hands-on workshops, an eduction day for New York City middle and high school students, panel discussions and talks, tents with vendors, family-friendly photo activities, publishers and gear demonstrations, a community photo book store, tintype portraits, and a beer garden with a range of food vendors supported by Smorgasburg and Brooklyn Brewery.

As in previous years, Photoville will be located in Brooklyn Bridge Park in DUMBO, transforming Brooklyn Bridge Plaza into an incredible modular galleries consisting of a network of more than 65 re-purposed shipping containers.

If you’re looking for the inside scoop, check out our post on last year’s Photoville here.

You can find general information about Photoville here, including directions, FAQ, and hours of operation.

 

Where to Find the Best Street Art in Washington DC

We do a lot of walking when we travel. And we do so with purpose. We love architecture, urban green spaces, and the serendipity of discovery, whether that’s a neighborhood coffee shop or a bistro at the end of a nondescript alleyway. But first and foremost, we’re on the hunt for street art. There’s no better way to get a finger on the pulse of a city. Street art is an expression of a city’s past, the issues it grapples with present day, and its aspirations for the future. Through incredible initiatives such as MuralsDC, an organization collaborating with the city’s Department of Public Works and Commission on Arts and Humanities, DC has created a veritable cornucopia of street art. The goal is to replace illegal graffiti with artistic revitalization projects, and in this endeavor they have been very successful.

So whether you’re looking for the perfect backdrop for your #OOTD or you’re looking to discover some great local artists, here are some of the best places to find street art in Washington DC.

Continue reading Where to Find the Best Street Art in Washington DC

48 Hours in Washington DC: 5 Places A Travel Foodie Must Visit

Washington DC is likely somewhere you visited on a school trip, or during a summer when your parents thought it was important to teach you a civics lesson. You visited the Washington Monument and took your requisite photo in front of the Capitol Building. If the thought of visiting Washington DC generates the same yawn your Social Studies class did, then it might be time to refresh that view. There is, and always has been, a distinct culture in DC beyond the history, the towering monuments, and all the political drama.

Continue reading 48 Hours in Washington DC: 5 Places A Travel Foodie Must Visit

The Daily Grind: My Favorite Coffee Shops in Manhattan

I’m not a car guy. I don’t collect watches or chase the newest technology. I’m not a smoker and a rare drinker. I only have one significant vice–if it even qualifies–and that’s coffee. I have a deep, visceral, obsessive love for coffee.

“Back home we toss a horseshoe in the pot. Stands up straight, coffee’s ready”
-Frank Hopkins, Hidalgo

Continue reading The Daily Grind: My Favorite Coffee Shops in Manhattan

Through the Lens: Inside Brooklyn’s Photoville (Or How to Win at Date Night)

Lynn and I have been married for a number of years. When we started this blog, we really had no idea what kind of journey we were embarking on. The path has been one with many surprises, but one of the unexpected happy side effects is that we get to go on a lot of dates. Coffee dates, museum dates, let’s-try-something-new dates. Dates where we jump in a car or hop on a plane. Some dates still end up being duds, but when an event is going to check off a lot of boxes, we know the odds we’ll have a good time improve significantly. And Photoville checks off a lot of boxes.

Continue reading Through the Lens: Inside Brooklyn’s Photoville (Or How to Win at Date Night)

Two of the Best Museums in New York City Are In Astoria, Queens

When you think of museums in New York City, the usual Manhattan-centric suspects immediately come to mind: MoMA, The Gug, and The Met. If you’re a hardcore museum hound, two of our other favorites, The Whitney or The Frick, might dance their way onto your list. Or perhaps you have children, in which case you’ll think of The American Museum of Natural History, because you’ve seen Night at the Museum no less than a hundred times. Now, what if we told you that two of the best museums in New York City aren’t even located in Manhattan?

Continue reading Two of the Best Museums in New York City Are In Astoria, Queens