Sure, you’ve got plans for Labor Day—on Monday afternoon you’re going to clamber out onto a friend’s rusty old fire escape or share the cement median strip your neighborhood calls a park with 37 strangers and say you’re having a barbecue. If you’re lucky, someone will bring a package of Hebrew Nationals; if not, it’s Oscar Meyer with a side of your friend’s girlfriend’s “famous” coleslaw, which bears an uncanny resemblance to hamster bedding. Farewell to summer, indeed!
Us? We’re going to spend Saturday afternoon in a waterfront paradise, all quaint architecture and rolling lawns, with live music, good beer and 25 of New York’s best chefs at our beck and call. Oh, and pigs. Did we mention the pigs?
It’s called Pig Island. And you want to go to there.
Governors Island has played host to a number of food-focused events over the summer, and it’s all been leading up to this. Actually, we think our whole lives have been leading up to this. Those chefs (from Hecho en Dumbo, John Brown Smokehouse, Casa Mono and Talde, to name a few) have been supplied with 80 locally, happily raised hogs with which to do whatever they can dream up—think maple bacon sticky buns, Filipino-style roasted lechon, pork terrines and good ol’ fashioned BBQ ribs. Sixpoint is providing the beer, and there’s even a vegetarian pavilion you’d be proud to bring a vegetarian to—if they can get past the roasting pigs without caving, that is.
Most importantly, it’s run by people who know what they’re doing, who have a mission and a worthy cause to support. The day, organized by Food Karma Projects (of Cook Out NYC and Good Beer Month fame) will highlight sustainable New York State products, and proceeds from the all-inclusive tickets will go to help strengthen local food systems. This is no Great Googa Mooga, people. If their past events are any indication, all of the stations will actually have enough food for the people who show up, and there’ll be no Woodstock ’94-style riots over the last bottle of water.
And if you just can’t get enough outdoor eatin’-and-drinkin’ action, come back and do it all over again on Sunday, when Food Karma hosts the summer’s second 5 Boro PicNYC, with more music, more Sixpoint, and a completely different lineup of vendors working without the single-animal restriction. Hell, we’re so excited we’ll probably just camp out under a picnic table overnight so as not to miss a minute of the fun. If you see us, just ignore the grass stains, OK?
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