Monday, September 20, 2010

Week of September 20 - September 27, 2010

"By all these lovely tokens

September days are here,

With summer’s best of weather

And autumn’s best of cheer."

- Helen Hunt Jackson, September, 1830-1885

I hope you enjoy this week’s GEMS and please feel free to share your own GEMS with us by emailing us at



It may seem a little premature to some, however, the holiday season is upon us. Soon we will find ourselves planning the Thanksgiving feast, the Nochebuena dinner and wondering what hostess gift we should bring along as we visit friends and family over the holidays. Why not take advantage of this chance to taste 70 wines including some ultra premium selections, a great oppor
tunity to preview extraordinary holiday wines, find gifts and sample excellent bottles for every day enjoyment.

Thursday, 9/23. Blue Streak Wines & Spirits. 4720 Center Boulevard, near Gantry Plaza State Park, LIC NY. (718) 706-9463. 8pm to 10pm. Ticket price: $45 (includes tastings of 70 wines).



Think delicious sausage and peppers, fresh zeppoles and entertainment for the whole family by over 300 street vendors set up along Mulberry Street. The 84th Annual Feast of San Gennaro, is New York City’s longest-running, biggest and most revered religious outdoor festival in the United States.

Through Sunday, 9/26. The feast runs along Mul
berry Street, between Canal Street (on south) and Houston Street (on north). It takes place east to west on Grand Street, between Mott and Baxter Street, and east to west on Hester Street, between Mott and Baxter Streets. Feast hours; Monday through Thursday, 11:30am to 11:30pm and Friday through Saturday, 11:30am to midnight. Free and open to the public.


In celebration of the upcoming 11th Annual Latin Grammy’s, which will air on Univision on 11/11. The Latin Grammy street festival will feature live performances by Gilberto Santa Rosa, Oro Solido, Zion y Lenox, and more. Be sure to visit the Las Vegas kiosk to sign up for a chance to win a VIP trip to Las Vegas and attend the 11th Annual Latin Grammy’s. Sunday, 9/26. Boulevard East between 54th and 60th streets, West New York, NJ. Festival begins at 12 Noon. Free and open to the public.




El Diario La Prensa, New York’s largest Spanish language daily newspaper is running a “Best of New York” competition, featuring the best Latino friendly restaurants, supermarkets, services and more. Help support these “Latino friendly” businesses and vote for your favorite picks by picking up a copy of El Diario La Prensa through 10/21, complete the entry form and mail it in. You can win a $500 cash prize and/or additional prizes. The “Best of New York” winners as well as the contest winners will be featured in El Diario on 10/29.




Is New York City’s first—and only—annual festival of contemporary Mexican art and culture. Encompassing cuisine, dance, film, literature, and music. Celebrate México Now has helped bring over 200 artists and projects to more than 60 of New York’s leading cultural institutions, proving that Mexico is overflowing with creativity in every discipline, and that New Yorkers from all backgrounds find these artists and their work invigorating, insightful and meaningful. Through 9/30. For more information and a complete listing of events, locations and time visit




The Grammy-winning bassist Israel “Cachao” Lopez died in Coral Gables, Florida in March 2008, almost 90-years old. A maestro of legendary status on the world stage and ultimately considered one of the greatest Afro-Cuban musicians of all time, he had made his home in the United States for the past four decades. Coming from a family of classical musicians, he had formal conservatory training and held a seat in the Havana Philharmonic Orchestra for 30 years, performing under the direction of all of the legendary international conductors of the time – beginning at age 10!

American Masters pays tribute to the Father of Mambo in the series’ bilingual film, Cachao: Uno Más. Monday, 9/20. 9 p.m. (ET) on PBS. For more information visit




This year, in collaboration with NYU’s Latino Studies and Latin American Studies Departments, we invite graduate students to present their work on Latino Folk Culture and Expressive Traditions. The NYFS seeks to encourage young scholars to continue their studies and become active contributors to the fields of folklore, ethnomusicology, anthropology and more.

Theme: Latino Folk Culture and Expressive Traditions

A cumbia group belting-out Colombian tunes at an outdoor cumbiamba, a Peruvian curandero diagnosing a patient through the use of animals, a Mexican family building a Diá de los Muertos altar in their home, a décima verse sung by a Puerto Rican jibaro—all of these are examples of Latino Expressive Traditions. While some of these forms have roots in African traditions and others have roots in Indigenous traditions, all are considered Latino Expressive Traditions or Folk Arts. These traditions speak to what Latinos say, believe, make, know and do—things that they first learned from their families and community.

The length and breadth of Latino traditions literally covers two continents; and transnational migration to major U.S. cities such as Miami, Chicago, San Antonio, Newark, and New York have ensured that the impact of Latino culture continues to be profound. We support papers which explore the topic of Latino Expressive Traditions from both the homeland perspective and immigrant perspective. We particularly encourage papers that address Latino traditions in New York’s tri-state area.

Students can cover any number of topics related to traditional performing arts, materials arts, vernacular culture, sacred arts, etc. as long as the research is with a particular Latino group. While attendees should be graduate students from any academic program, they do not have to major in folklore or Latino studies. Participants can be ethnomusicologists, anthropologists, historians, etc.

Submissions are due by Thursday, 9/30. For more information visit


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