When it comes to trying new, exciting cuisine, few foods hit the spot like a deliciously fresh Mediterranean meal. However, we know that it can be very difficult to find authentic Mediterranean grocery wholesalers in New York City, NY. Having lived in metro Atlanta for years, we realized that our customers needed an easy way to find quality wholesale Middle Eastern and Mediterranean food in bulk. That is why we created Nazareth Grocery Mediterranean Market - to give everyone a chance to enjoy tasty, healthy food, desserts, and authentic Mediterranean gifts at wholesale prices.
Founded in 2009, Nazareth Grocery has become one of New York City's leading international wholesale grocery stores. We are very proud to serve our customers and do everything in our power to give them the largest selection of high-quality wholesale goods available.
If you're looking for the freshest, most delicious Middle Eastern wholesale products and ingredients, you will find them here at the best prices in the state. We encourage you to swing by our store in Marietta to see our selection for yourself. We think that you will be impressed!
There is so much more to Mediterranean food than pizza and pasta. The perfect climate combined with delicious foods and amazing wine makes the Mediterranean incredibly irresistible. That's why our customers absolutely love to buy this kind of cuisine in bulk. Every country in this region has its own set of specialties and delicacies, each with its own flavors and styles of preparation.
Mediterranean countries include:
Fresh, healthy, aromatic, rich: it's no wonder that the popularity of Middle Eastern cuisine and products has skyrocketed in the United States. This genre of cuisine features a large variety of foods, from Halvah to Labneh. If there were one common theme throughout all Middle Eastern food, it would be the bright, vibrant herbs and spices that are used. These flavorings help create rich, complex flavors that foodies fawn over. Typically, Middle Eastern food is piled high for all to eat, with enough food for an entire republic to put down.
This refreshing, healthy dish is chock-full of greens, herbs, tomatoes, and bulgur (or cracked wheat), creating a memorable, bold flavor. This dish may be eaten on its own or paired with a shawarma sandwich or helping of falafel. It's best to buy your ingredients in bulk to make this dish because it tastes best freshly made with family around to enjoy. Just be sure to bring a toothpick to the tabbouleh party - you're almost certain to have some leafy greens stuck in your teeth after eating.
We mentioned shawarma above, and for good reason - this dish is enjoyed by men and women around the world, and of course, right here in the U.S. Except for falafel, this might be the most popular Middle Eastern food item in history. Shawarma is kind of like a Greek gyro, with slow-roasted meat stuffed in laffa with veggies and sauce. The blend of spices and the smoky meat mix together to create a tangy, meaty flavor that you will want to keep eating for hours. For western-style shawarma, try using beef or chicken. For a more traditional meal, try using lamb from our Middle Eastern grocery distributor in New York City, NY.
Traditionally used as a dip meant for fresh pita, hummus is a combo of chickpeas, garlic, and tahini, blended together until silky, smooth, and creamy. You can find hummus in just about any appetizer section of a Middle Eastern restaurant menu. That's because it's considered a staple of Middle Eastern food that can be enjoyed by itself, as a spread, or with fresh-baked pita bread. Hummus is also very healthy, making it a no-brainer purchase from our grocery store.
If there's one diet that is most well-known for its health benefits, it has got to be the Mediterranean diet. In 2019, U.S. News & World Report listed the Mediterranean diet as No. 1 on its best over diet list. This incredible diet has been cited to help with weight loss, brain health, heart health, diabetes prevention, and cancer prevention.
Whether you already love Mediterranean food or you're looking to make some positive changes in your life, this "diet" is for you. Eating cuisine like Greek food, Persian food, Turkish food, and Italian food is healthy and tastes great. Even better than that? At Nazareth Wholesale Grocery, we have many staples of the Mediterranean diet for sale in bulk so that you can stock up on your favorites at the best prices around.
So, what exactly is the Mediterranean diet?
It is a way of eating that incorporates traditional Greek, Italian, and other Mediterranean cultures' foods. These foods are often plant-based and make up the foundation of the diet, along with olive oil. Fish, seafood, dairy, and poultry are also included in moderation. Red meat and sweets are only eaten in moderation, not in abundance. Mediterranean food includes many forms of nuts, fruits, vegetables, fish, seeds, and more. Of course, you can find at them all at our wholesale Mediterranean grocery store!
Here are just a few of the many benefits of eating a healthy Mediterranean diet:
Many studies have been conducted on this diet, many of which report that Mediterranean food is excellent for your heart. Some of the most promising evidence comes from a randomized clinical trial published in 2013. For about five years, researchers followed 7,000 men and women around the country of Spain. These people had type 2 diabetes or were at a high risk for cardiovascular disease. Participants in the study who ate an unrestricted Mediterranean diet with nuts and extra-virgin olive oil were shown to have a 30% lower risk of heart events.
In addition to the heart-healthy benefits of a Mediterranean diet, studies have shown that eating healthy Mediterranean and Middle Eastern foods can reduce the chances of stroke in women. The study was conducted in the U.K., which included women between the ages of 40 and 77. Women who stuck to the Mediterranean diet showed a lower risk of having a stroke - especially women who were at high risk of having one.
First and foremost, purchase your Mediterranean and Middle Eastern wholesale foods from Nazareth Grocery - we're always updating our inventory! Getting started on this healthy, delicious diet is easy.
Instead of unhealthy sweets like candy and ice cream, try eating fresh fruit instead. It's refreshing, tasty, and often packed with great vitamins and nutrients.
Try eating fish twice a week, in lieu of red meat. Fish is much healthier and doesn't have the unfortunate side effects of red meat, like inflammation.
Try planning out your meals using beans, whole grains, and veggies. Don't start with meats and sweets.
They're tasty, but try to avoid processed foods completely.
Instead of using butter to flavor your food, use extra virgin olive oil instead. Olive oil contains healthy fats and tastes great too.
Try to get more exercise and get out of the house. The Mediterranean lifestyle is an active one, best enjoyed in the beautiful sunshine when possible.
Buying wholesale and retail are quite different. When you buy products from a wholesaler, you're essentially buying from the middleman between a retail establishment and the manufacturer. Wholesale purchases are almost always made in bulk. Because of that, buyers pay a discounted price. That's great for normal buyers and great for business owners, who can sell those products to profit. This higher price is called the retail price, and it is what traditional customers pay when they enter a retail store.Free Estimate
It's out with the old and in with the new in New York City, as the city removed its last pay phone on Monday.The removal of the pay phone, which was located on 745 7th Avenue, signals the official end of what used to be one of the city's most iconic street symbols. Public pay phones could be found throughout the city decades ago, but the rise of cell phones has made them obsolete.With the use of public pay phones declining, officials began removing them from the city in 2015 after CityBridge was chosen by state o...
It's out with the old and in with the new in New York City, as the city removed its last pay phone on Monday.
The removal of the pay phone, which was located on 745 7th Avenue, signals the official end of what used to be one of the city's most iconic street symbols. Public pay phones could be found throughout the city decades ago, but the rise of cell phones has made them obsolete.
With the use of public pay phones declining, officials began removing them from the city in 2015 after CityBridge was chosen by state officials to replace the payphone with LinkNYC, which offer free, high-speed Wi-Fi to those near its kiosks, as well as free phone calls and a charging station for mobile devices.
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Aside from the kiosks also serving as digital billboard for PSAs, art and other city services, LinkNYC says it has now grown into the largest and fastest free public Wi-Fi network, having facilitated over 3 billion Wi-Fi sessions to over 10 million subscribers. The kiosks will also soon provide 5G coverage to the city.
A map on its website shows there are 1,860 kiosks spread throughout the city.
“As a native New Yorker, saying goodbye to the last street pay phone is bittersweet because of the prominent place they’ve held in the city's physical landscape for decades," Matthew Fraser, Commissioner of the Office of Technology and Innovation, said in a news release. "Just like we transitioned from the horse and buggy to the automobile and from the automobile to the airplane, the digital evolution has progressed from payphones to high-speed Wi-Fi kiosks to meet the demands of our rapidly changing daily communications needs."
While the final pay phone will no longer be in service, it won't be forgotten. It will be installed at the Museum of the City of New York near the east side of Central Park in the exhibit "Analog City," which will look back at the city before the rise of technology.
Talk about a real kick to the groin.Rising prices of alcohol nationwide have even reached the bootleg market of the Big Apple as nutcrackers — an illegal boozy beverage sold by park and beach vendors around NYC — are skyrocketing to $15 a bottle.The summertime favorite since the 1990s — a dealer’s choice concoction of fruit juice and liquor in a plastic bottle — u...
Talk about a real kick to the groin.
Rising prices of alcohol nationwide have even reached the bootleg market of the Big Apple as nutcrackers — an illegal boozy beverage sold by park and beach vendors around NYC — are skyrocketing to $15 a bottle.
The summertime favorite since the 1990s — a dealer’s choice concoction of fruit juice and liquor in a plastic bottle — used to sell in 8-ounce bottles for $5 or 12-ounce bottles for $10, Kareem Middleton, a Bed-Stuy based vendor, previously told The Post.
But on Sunday, Sydney Pereira of Hell Gate NYC tweeted that she saw the under-the-radar drink selling at that 50 percent inflation mark inside Brooklyn’s Prospect Park.
Naturally, New Yorkers are panicking and some say this booze-borne inflation has been puffing up for some time now.
“This has been happening since last summer and it’s upsetting me and my homegirls,” tweeted Naomi Ramble.
Some were also quick to call out how the United States’ downbeat economy is hitting close to home with the nutcracker’s waltz to cocktail bar prices.
“All you need to know about the veracity of a recession is right here,” wrote Vanessa Parra.
But this has been a growing problem that’s driven locals nuts for some time apparently. Back in the day, even $10 was astronomical for a nutcracker, according to Twitter user Mario Ismailanji.
“Wow. I remember when these were like $5,” he posted.
Rest assured though, nutcrackers are not selling at apparent record highs all over the city — yet.
One user, @AkofenaBK, didn’t need liquid courage to post what she suspects is the true reason for the high mark-up in Brooklyn.
“Gentrified culture, calls for gentrified prices,” she wrote.
Due to pandemic supply shortages, alcohol costs nationwide have recently been inflating at rates which would leave many in a drunken stupor.
In January, Corona and Modelo announced that they expected to raise prices by 2% because of glass shortages and breweries nationwide have had to also increase prices to combat the rising cost of aluminum.
Last fall, imported wine around NYC was uncorking to higher than normal prices due to transportation costs.
Specialized Facility Exemplifies the Governor's Investments in High-Quality Supports and Services for Vulnerable YouthSupporting Services to Provide Training and Counseling to Offer Bright Futures to 1,900 Youth AnnuallyGovernor Kathy Hochul today announced the opening of Covenant House New York's new $76 million facility that will provide housing and supportive services to youth who are experiencing homelessness and survivors of human trafficking. The new 80,000 square foot facility is the first purpose-built facility in the 5...
Specialized Facility Exemplifies the Governor's Investments in High-Quality Supports and Services for Vulnerable Youth
Supporting Services to Provide Training and Counseling to Offer Bright Futures to 1,900 Youth Annually
Governor Kathy Hochul today announced the opening of Covenant House New York's new $76 million facility that will provide housing and supportive services to youth who are experiencing homelessness and survivors of human trafficking. The new 80,000 square foot facility is the first purpose-built facility in the 50-year history of Covenant House serving young people in New York City. The facility features 1,500 square feet of outdoor space, six floors of residential shelter with up to 120 beds, and five floors of program space. The supportive programs include health and wellness services, workforce training, social case management, recreational activities, and advocacy and legal services. The facility will serve approximately 1,900 youth annually.
"Supportive housing and social services are critical to helping ensure all New Yorkers have access to the resources they need to lead successful and meaningful lives," Governor Hochul said. "By supporting transformative projects like Covenant House New York's new state-of-the-art facility, we are helping our most vulnerable get back on a path toward stability and opportunity."
Empire State Development President, CEO and Commissioner Hope Knight said, "Covenant House New York's new facility will provide the most vulnerable New Yorkers with the support, safety and stability they need to lead fulfilling lives. Through support services like CovWorks, at-risk and homeless youth have opportunities to learn, grow and succeed. Addressing the root causes of youth homelessness are crucial to providing assistance, and New York State continues to combat this issue through stable housing and economic opportunity."
The new Covenant House New York's (CHNY) location was supported by a $2 million Empire State Development capital grant, recommended by the New York City Regional Economic Development Council, and a $2.5 million Congressionally Directed Spending appropriation under Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies (THUD) for Fiscal Year 2022. The project aligns with and reflects New York State's efforts to identify and address root causes of homelessness and at-risk youth unemployment. These grants will also support the retention of CHNY's 236 existing jobs and the creation of 25 new jobs.
Workforce training and educational programs are crucial to ensuring at-risk youth will have the opportunity to lead fulfilling lives in their community. CHNY's CovWorksprogram provides enrolled youth with career and education services to advance academically and in the workforce. CovWorks offers High School Equivalency prep, job readiness training, and a workforce initiative known as Individual Placement and Support, which promotes employment opportunities for young adults. CovWorks also offers vocational training programs for careers in nursing assistance, security, cosmetology, and the culinary industry. CHNY partners with the local colleges and universities, including the City University of New York and State University of New York system, for its CovWorks program. In 2021, 497 youth interacted with CovWorks, with 405 receiving employment help and 215 receiving education assistance.
New York City Regional Economic Development Council Co-Chairs Winston Fisher, Partner at Fisher Brothers, and Dr. Félix V. Matos Rodríguez, City University of New York Chancellor, said, "After 50 years, Covenant House is still a beacon of hope and opportunity, as well as a brighter future, for the young New Yorkers who need it most. Supportive housing and social services are vital to providing stability and the path to a better future for New York's at-risk youth. Covenant House's services offer the support system needed to help establish a track toward long-term success."
As part of the FY 2023 Enacted Budget, Governor Hochul prioritized a statewide effort to address street homelessness and support New York's most vulnerable. These initiatives include the establishment of the Safe Options Support (SOS) teams throughout New York City and in targeted regions throughout the state where street homelessness is most widespread and the use of public funds to implement initiatives that expand housing access and protect tenants from eviction. Furthermore, the Governor increased funding by $2 million for Runaway and Homeless Youth Programs to support the expansion of crisis and transitional living beds for vulnerable youth.
Senator Chuck Schumer said, "I am so proud to cut the ribbon today on Covenant House's new flagship facility that will provide critical services to some of the most vulnerable New Yorkers. The work of serving homeless youth and survivors of human trafficking is so utterly urgent and necessary that I didn't think twice about prioritizing Covenant House's request for $2.5 million in Congressionally Directed Spending. Covenant House started at the grassroots 50 years ago - neighbors coming together to support neighbors - and I can think of no better or more inspiring example for New York as we write the next chapter of our history together."
State Senator Brad Hoylman said, "Our children are our future. There is perhaps no better investment than ensuring all of our kids have a roof over their head and resources to heal from deeply traumatic experiences like human trafficking and homelessness. The Covenant House has long been a lifeline to countless young New Yorkers, and I am moved that Governor Hochul is dedicating $76 million to expand upon their mission."
New York City Mayor Eric Adams said, "We know that taking a holistic approach to providing supportive services, including providing housing, education, and employment opportunities, when working with at-risk youth is critical to helping them lead fulfilling lives. These services not only help move our city's youth out of homelessness, but can play a major factor in improving public safety. I applaud Governor Hochul for using innovative solutions, such as Covenant House, to ensure some of our city's most vulnerable are not left behind."
Council Member Erik Bottcher said, "I've never facility seen a facility like this before. It's designed to be the kind of place you want to be, rather than a place you need to be. Combined with great programs and staff, this facility has the potential to transform countless lives."
Covenant House Acting Executive Director Deirdre Cronin said, "Covenant House is so grateful for the continued support from Governor Hochul and all our partners at Empire State Development. Not only will this funding help provide essential food, shelter, medical attention and educational and workforce development. This kind of support shows also our young people that we believe in their promise and their futures. When our young people feel that support there is no goal they cannot achieve."
In the fall of 2013, Josh Bianchi was living in a nine-by-ten-foot room in an unheated rehearsal studio in Bushwick, Brooklyn, when the city condemned the building. He’d found the place on Craigslist, for $650 a month, and knew the situation wasn’t exactly legal: When he signed his lease, his landlord wrote “art studio” on each page, even after making it clear to Mr. Bianchi that people were living there full time. He lived next to a woman named Orion who had recently given up her pet rooster after the other tenants c...
In the fall of 2013, Josh Bianchi was living in a nine-by-ten-foot room in an unheated rehearsal studio in Bushwick, Brooklyn, when the city condemned the building. He’d found the place on Craigslist, for $650 a month, and knew the situation wasn’t exactly legal: When he signed his lease, his landlord wrote “art studio” on each page, even after making it clear to Mr. Bianchi that people were living there full time. He lived next to a woman named Orion who had recently given up her pet rooster after the other tenants complained about the noise.
Conveniently, the building was a short walk from the bar where he worked until 4 in the morning a few nights a week. It wasn’t his dream home, but it was an affordable place where he could lock a door and be alone. Plus, it allowed him to stay in the city he loved. “It was how I held onto the ground in New York,” Mr. Bianchi said.
After the city left a sign at the building’s entrance stating that all of the tenants had two days to evacuate, Mr. Bianchi panicked. He and a few other tenants approached the Red Cross’s Emergency Family Shelter, a program that primarily serves unhoused mothers and children, and offered to put some of them up in a hotel for two nights; instead, Mr. Bianchi crashed on couches.
One night, while Mr. Bianchi was working at the bar, a friend told him about an article on the website Gothamist about Housing Connect, an online portal launched in 2013 that allows New Yorkers to apply for affordable housing lotteries. The idea sparkled in his head like a golden ticket. After finding a new apartment (also without heat) with another former tenant of the recording studio, for $1,650 a month, Mr. Bianchi created a profile on the website, and began applying for apartments.
Over the last eight years, Mr. Bianchi has applied for countless apartments on Housing Connect, and visited an estimated 14 places for in-person inspections. The units ran the gamut, from unappealing shoe boxes to barely-affordable apartments in new-construction buildings.
According to the HPD, over 45,500 units have been made available between 2014 and 2021; many are subsidized units within newer-construction buildings, according to the Department of Housing Preservation and Development, which operates the lottery. Over half a million New Yorkers are currently registered on Housing Connect, and eligibility for each lottery is determined by the applicant’s assets and their income relative to the area median income.
Mr. Bianchi, who grew up in St. Clair Shores, Mich., had dreamed of moving to New York since visiting with a choir group in the fourth grade. “It was sort of all I talked about in high school,” he remembered with a laugh. “I really wanted to come out of the closet,” which seemed far easier to do in New York than in Michigan. He finally moved to New York in 2011, to attend Marymount Manhattan College.
“I had all these ideas about how cool it would be,” Mr. Bianchi said. “And it was cool. I felt as unselfconscious as I thought I would when I was 10, thinking, ‘I can live in New York and be so strange!’ I’m a little bit less strange now, but when I came here at 19, I was a free bird.”
$2,300 | Bedford-Stuyvesant, Brooklyn
Occupation: Content operations associate at Gimlet Media
His second living room: “I’m across the street from Doris, the bar, so I’ll invite people over to see the apartment, and then go to Doris and have a drink.”
The flip-side of Housing Connect: “It can make you feel a bit evil. If you tell your friends about the lottery and they get a place, you’re happy for them, but then there’s one fewer of these extremely rare rent-stabilized places.”
As he moved through college, eventually transferring to City College, he lived in cheap apartments, mostly in Bushwick, that he found on Craigslist. Then, for three years, he lived with a partner in Brooklyn Heights, where they split the $2,200 a month rent. But even that apartment felt precarious in its own way: “I always felt happy that things were going well,” he said, “but I would get so anxious about rent hikes or unforeseen circumstances or emergencies that would knock me back to a nine-by-ten room in an unheated building.”
After he and his partner split during the pandemic, Mr. Bianchi sublet a room in a friend’s apartment for $835 a month, but dreamed of once again living alone. He briefly considered moving upstate, but decided against it. The thing that has kept him in New York City, he said, is that “here, you can keep dreaming.”
Finally, last August, he found a rent-stabilized, $1,400-a-month studio apartment in Williamsburg that overlooked the JMZ subway tracks. It was so close to the train platform, he said, “I got to wave to my neighbors while they made their way to work.” The train regularly woke him up at odd hours. While it felt like a success to find a place where he could afford to live alone, and he got along well with his neighbors, he still dreamed of something a little less rattling. That same month, he moved from a job at the BBC as a digital content coordinator to a higher paying job as a content operations associate at Gimlet Media — or, as he calls it, a “podcast handyman.”
In December 2021, Mr. Bianchi applied for another apartment through Housing Connect: a one-bedroom renting for $2,300 a month in a new-construction building in Bedford-Stuyvesant, which he could now afford. In January, he received an email saying he had qualified to take part in the lottery, and could visit the apartment. He also had to submit pay stubs, bank statements, and proof that he’d been living in New York for at least six months.
At the showing, “I was supposed to pull out my phone to check the cell service, or check the water pressure, that sort of thing,” Mr. Bianchi remembered. “But I was blown away because it had a balcony and a washer-dryer. I didn’t care what the situation was, I went home and sent in an application.”
Two weeks later, he found out he had gotten the apartment. His landlord in Williamsburg told him he could break his lease if he was able to find a new tenant, and he found someone through a Slack channel at his work dedicated to the New York housing search. Luckily, she was a heavy sleeper.
Moving into his new apartment has afforded Mr. Bianchi the peace and security he has been searching for through eight years of Housing Connect lotteries. Like his old apartment, the new apartment is rent-stabilized, so while he could face rent increases, they are based on approvals by the city’s Rent Guidelines Board. “It soothes so many of my anxieties, to hang up pictures without worrying that in six months I’ll have to leave my apartment,” Mr. Bianchi said. “This is a home that my parents can come visit, where I can make dinner for someone. It’s my bright little sanctuary.” His plants are loving the ample light from the large south-facing windows, and he has finally been able to build shelves to house his collection of books.
While moving to New York was a fulfillment of a childhood dream, this apartment has fulfilled a more recent one. When he was living in an unheated apartment in Bushwick, “I would stare at these new apartment buildings in the neighborhood being like, ‘Who lives there? How is anyone living there?’” Mr. Bianchi remembered. “And I just wished so much that I could live in one of those glass block apartments. I always felt like, ‘I wish someone would ask me to live in one of those.’”
Nassau Community College's former observatory is looking for a new home, and a group of amateur astronomers hopes it could become New York City's first for-the-public observatory.The Garden City school closed the 12-foot-high, 6-foot-wide observatory at the end of 2019 as it prepared for renovations. The structure, which was used by astronomy students for more than 40 years, is being replaced by a green roof and six open-air telescopes.Local astronomers and professors are scrambling to move the half-ton galvanized steel observa...
Nassau Community College's former observatory is looking for a new home, and a group of amateur astronomers hopes it could become New York City's first for-the-public observatory.
The Garden City school closed the 12-foot-high, 6-foot-wide observatory at the end of 2019 as it prepared for renovations. The structure, which was used by astronomy students for more than 40 years, is being replaced by a green roof and six open-air telescopes.
Local astronomers and professors are scrambling to move the half-ton galvanized steel observatory off the campus by May 24th and find it a new home.
“I couldn't let it go to the scrap, and I even wanted it if I didn't have a bunch of trees in my yard, I’d plop it in the middle of my yard,” said Dr. Thomas Bruckner, chair of Physical Sciences at the college. “But a lot of people wanted it, it was just a matter of picking it up. It's big and heavy. It doesn't come apart.”
The Amateur Astronomers Association of New York is leading the mission, and after a nearly yearlong journey, it may have settled on a permanent home in the Bronx. The old observatory could see past the Andromeda Galaxy, more than 2.5 million light years from Earth, on a clear, dark night — so a public space offers a unique opportunity for young aspiring astronomers to explore the cosmos.
The final frontier is just within reach — if city park officials can agree to the plan in time.
Over nearly 200 years, several stargazers have tried and failed to set up the city's first public observatory, according to the International Planetarium Society. The closest alternatives are at Columbia University and various City University of New York campuses, including one shuttered on top of Ingersoll Hall at Brooklyn College. All of which are prioritized for their students.
The latest quest has likewise felt long, since the Amateur Astronomers Association took on the challenge of moving the Nassau Community College observatory in May 2021. But the association doesn’t want to move the structure to a temporary home only to have to pay for a second move.
Bart Fried, the organization’s executive vice president and a telescope historian, said each move would cost more than $3,000, depending on the distance, because a boom truck is required.
The first location that came to mind, in July 2021 when amateur astronomers began planning, was Floyd Bennett Field in Brooklyn. It’s dark, and the organization has been running the park’s stargazing programs for more than 40 years. But they were turned down after more than three months because of historical preservation issues, according to Fried, and the search continued.
The next site was about seven miles up the Belt Parkway. Shirley Chisholm State Park is built on a Brooklyn landfill and is a treeless stretch of prairie grassland — perfect for stargazing with no obstructions.
There was one hitch. The park closes at 7 p.m., and that doesn’t work for summer when it isn’t fully dark until after that time.
“After Shirley Chisholm [State Park] turned us down, we were feeling pretty defeated at this point,” said Kat Troche, a member of the NASA Solar System Ambassador program involved in relocating the public observatory. “Wow, we can't even give this thing away.”
The Amateur Astronomers Association was willing to provide the programming and staffing and pay for installation, upkeep and retrofitting including theft and defacement. According to Fried, the giant structure doesn’t require a foundation, and therefore no concrete work is needed in order to relocate/situate the observatory. Aside from putting metal rods into the ground to hold the observatory down, no digging will be required either. To level the structure, it needs to sit on about 6 inches? of wood decking, which will be hidden by the dome’s skirt. And access to utility lines isn’t necessary because it will be powered by battery packs charged by solar panels.
“This is super important [to have a public observatory in New York City]. One of our events could inspire future astronauts, future cosmologists, and astrophysics,” Troche said. “The stars – it's something to aspire to. We have this natural urge to wander and the cosmos allows us to do that.”
The observatory still had no solid option for a home until one fall evening in 2021. While hosting a sidewalk astronomy event near The Bronx High School of Science, it dawned on the members of the Amateur Astronomers Association that they were standing in the perfect location.
“We don’t do enough in the Bronx. Why don’t we put the dome up there where the public can use it; and Bronx Science can use it and we can use it?” Fried remembered thinking at the time. “It will be New York City’s very first truly public observatory even though there have been attempts over 150 or 200 years, all of which failed for various reasons, including several attempts in Central Park.”
The location is across Goulden Avenue from The Bronx High School of Science on the grassy banks along the Jerome Park Reservoir. The school also has a planetarium, and a very active astronomy club headed by the school’s physical science teachers Neil Farley and Colin Morrell. School administrators have approved the plan, but it still needs sign off from city officials.
Currently, city park officials are reviewing plans for a resting place in Jerome Park, according to email correspondence shared with Gothamist.
“We are in close contact with the Amateur Astronomers Association on the relocation of the observatory, and are looking into the potential of re-homing it in one of our parks,” wrote Dan Kastanis, a press officer at New York City Parks Department. “No plan has been finalized at this time.”
While the goal is to move the observatory to its new home before Memorial Day, the parks department called their process “not straight-forward” with many logistical, legal and permitting issues that must be worked out first. That includes figuring out accessibility for people with disabilities, graffiti prevention and the installation process.
In the meantime, there’s still a possibility that parks approval won’t come in time for the observatory’s eviction from Nassau Community College on May 24th. If that happens, the Amateur Astronomers Association has a backup plan. It will need to find a way to temporarily move the 360-degree rolling-top dome less than a half-mile away to the Cradle of Aviation Museum in Garden City, New York where it will be cleaned and repainted.
Despite the hassle, the several astronomers involved are determined to make this observatory accessible to anyone curious enough to gaze into the cosmos.
“Of all the sciences, astronomy is the least resolved. We only know what 4% of the matter in our universe, we don't know what the rest is,” Bruckner said. “It's the next generations of the curious that will lead us into discovering what our universe is made out of how and why we came to be.”
If all goes well, the Amateur Astronomers Association plans to celebrate the opening of the New York City Public Observatory this summer in a permanent Bronx home. The festivities would include a first-light party, a tradition that marks the initial viewing through a new telescope.