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Friday, August 28, 2015

MLS Peachy: New York City FC vs. Columbus Crew SC: Match Preview Be There New York! Our Coverage Sponsored by Vermont Harvest

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New York City FC are taking a playoff-style approach to their final eight matches of the season.

The Club’s 28 points puts them in the hunt for the sixth and final playoff berth in the Eastern Conference. New York City FC (7-12-7) are currently seventh, while Montreal (8-10-4; 28 points) is sixth with a better goal differential. Fellow expansion side Orlando City SC (7-12-7) are eighth also on 28 points. Philadelphia (7-13-6; 27 points) and Chicago (7-13-5; 26 points) are also in the chase as the season winds down.

“It’s a playoff mentality,” goalkeeper Josh Saunders said. “It’s essentially do or die every game.”

New York City FC’s first test during this vital end-of-the-season run is against Columbus Crew SC on Saturday.

Kickoff is 4 p.m. ET from Yankee Stadium (YES Network, WFAN, WADO).

“We have to take these last eight games one at a time,” head coach Jason Kreis said. “We have to put all of our focus and energy into this first game. It’s critical we get three points at home.”

New York City FC return to the confines of Yankee Stadium following a cross-country road trip with stops in Columbus and Los Angeles. The Club drew 2-2 with the Crew on August 19 before losing 5-1 to the defending MLS Cup Champion Galaxy on August 23.

Despite the result, Kreis and his players are using the last match as a learning tool.

“The biggest lesson we learned is if we aren’t all together and physically ready to play a team like L.A., we’re going to get dominated,” Kreis said. “For me, that’s the best team in the league; they’re head and shoulders above the rest. If we aren’t all together we don’t stand with a team like that right now.”

Midfielder Tommy McNamara, who has become a constant in the Starting XI in recent months, said the Club needs to move on from the last match.

“It’s a new week, so we can’t dwell on it,” said McNamara, who has started the last 13 matches. “We have eight games left and we really need to give it everything we have to make this playoff push.  
We need to keep pushing the pace of the game and we can’t get too comfortable early on.”

Columbus, currently third in the Eastern Conference at 10-8-8 (38 points), comes into Saturday’s match following a comeback 3-2 victory over Sporting Kansas City at MAPFRE Stadium on August 22.

The Crew scored twice in the final 10 minutes to turn a 2-1 deficit into a one-goal victory. Jack McInerney, who was traded to the club from Montreal on August 4, scored the winner in the 88th minute.

Columbus, led by Major League Soccer’s top scorer Kei Kamara (18 goals), is 6-2-4 in the last 12 matches, winning four of the last seven.

New York City are happy to be back at Yankee Stadium. The Club beat Eastern Conference-leading D.C. United 3-1 their last time in the Bronx on August 13.

“It feels great being back at home,” McNamara said. “We love playing at Yankee Stadium in front of our home fans and we expect to have a positive result this weekend in front of them.”

“We’re positive, we’re upbeat and we still have a chance to make the playoffs with eight games left,” said Saunders, who leads MLS with 88 saves. “We got a win at home the last time we played there, so we hope to get another one. We’re eager to get back out there in front of our home fans.”

Note from the Editor: Leon the Bulldog in Japan does his best Josh Saunders impression here:



For over 30 years, Stribling and Associates has represented high-end residential real estate, specializing in the sale and rental of townhouses, condos, co-ops, and lofts throughout Manhattan and Brooklyn, and around the globe. Stribling has more than 200 professional brokers who use their respected expertise to provide personalized service to buyers and sellers at all price levels. A separate division, Stribling Private Brokerage, discreetly markets properties over $5 million, and commands a significant market share in this rarified sector of residential real estate. Stribling is the exclusive New York City affiliate of Savills, a leading global real estate advisor with over 200 office in 48 countries. 

Whom You Know Congratulates their new President, Elizabeth Ann Stribling-Kivlan:

Much-anticipated new film, written by wizarding world creator J.K. Rowling and being directed by David Yates, starts production in England

Principal photography has begun on Warner Bros. Pictures’ highly anticipated feature “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.” The all new adventure is set in the wizarding world created by J.K. Rowling in her best-selling Harry Potter books, which were adapted into the highest-grossing film franchise of all time.

Filming started today, August 17, at Warner Bros. Studios, Leavesden, under the direction of David Yates, who helmed the last four “Harry Potter” feature films.

Academy Award winner Eddie Redmayne (“The Theory of Everything”) stars as Newt Scamander, the wizarding world’s preeminent magizoologist, who stops in New York following his travels to find and document magical creatures. 

“Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” also stars Katherine Waterston (“Inherent Vice”) as Tina; Alison Sudol (“Dig,” “Transparent”) as Tina’s sister, Queenie; Tony Award winner Dan Fogler (“The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee”) as Jacob; Ezra Miller (“Trainwreck”) as Credence; two-time Oscar nominee Samantha Morton (“In America,” “Sweet and Lowdown”) as Mary Lou; Jenn Murray (“Brooklyn”) as Chastity; young newcomer Faith Wood-Blagrove as Modesty; and Colin Farrell (“True Detective”) as Graves.

Marking the screenwriting debut of J.K. Rowling, the script was inspired by her character Newt Scamander’s Hogwarts textbook, Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.

The film is being produced by David Heyman, producer of all eight of the blockbuster “Harry Potter” features; J.K. Rowling; Steve Kloves; and Lionel Wigram.

Collaborating with Yates behind the scenes are: Oscar-winning director of photography Philippe Rousselot (“A River Runs Through It,” the “Sherlock Holmes” movies), three-time Oscar-winning production designer Stuart Craig (“The English Patient,” “Dangerous Liaisons,” “Gandhi,” the “Harry Potter” films), three-time Oscar-winning costume designer Colleen Atwood (“Chicago,” “Memoirs of a Geisha,” “Alice in Wonderland”), Oscar-winning visual effects supervisor Tim Burke (“Gladiator,” the “Harry Potter” films), Oscar-nominated visual effects supervisor Christian Manz (“Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows – Part 1”), and Yates’ longtime editor Mark Day (the last four “Harry Potter” films).

Warner Bros. Pictures has slated “Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them” for worldwide release in 3D and IMAX on November 18, 2016.


Jo Ractliffe's Photographs of Angola and South Africa on Display at Met Museum Began this Week #JoRactliffe Our Coverage Sponsored by Bergen Linen

Jo Ractliffe (South African, born 1961). Roadside Stall on the Way to Viana (detail), from the series Terreno Ocupado, 2007. Inkjet print, 2015. On loan from the artist, courtesy of Stevenson, Cape Town and Johannesburg. © Jo Ractliffe. Courtesy of Stevenson, Cape Town and Johannesburg

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Exhibition Dates: August 24, 2015-January 3, 2016

Exhibition Location: Lila Acheson Wallace Wing, north mezzanine, Gallery 914

The Aftermath of Conflict: Jo Ractliffe's Photographs of Angola and South Africa at The Metropolitan Museum of Art beginning August 24 features 23 works produced over the past 10 years by South African artist Jo Ractliffe (born 1961). The photographs examine the landscapes of Angola and South Africa as sites of conflict and contention. Focusing on the aftermath of the Angolan Civil War and the intertwined conflict known in South Africa as the "Border War," her photographs address themes of dispossession, history, memory, and erasure. The exhibition highlights Ractliffe's engagement with the land and structures of Angola's capital, Luanda, as well as with places in the Angolan and South African countryside where unmarked mass graves, minefields, and former military testing sites reveal the complex traces of the past in the present.

The 23 works on loan from the artist include single images, diptychs, and triptychs selected from three photographic series: Terreno Ocupado (2007), As Terras do Fim do Mundo (2010), and The Borderlands (2013). In Terreno Ocupado, Ractliffe establishes the city of Luanda as a multilayered place of both historical dispute and present-day struggle. Photographs highlighting the Portuguese colonial occupation of Angola and its imprint on the built environment appear alongside works depicting the often harsh economic conditions of Luanda today. By focusing on the structural instability of the city's shanty towns, as well as the longer history of political instability threading through their foundations, these photographs question what it means for land to be occupied, abandoned, and struggled over.

The works selected from 2010's As Terras do Fim do Mundo highlight traces of the Border War, a conflict fought in rural Angola and present-day Namibia between South Africa and its allies on one side and, on the other, the exiled Namibian liberation movement, the Angolan government, and their allies. For this series, Ractliffe traveled alongside ex-soldiers returning to the desolate places where they had fought. The images produced on these trips include photographs of unmarked mass graves, minefields, and other often-inconspicuous signs of past conflict, showing how landscape can function as a repository of histories and memories and yet not be apparent at first glance. Most of the photographs in this series appear devoid of human presence, but in a triptych featuring mural representations of the conflict's three key political leaders—Fidel Castro, Agostinho Neto, and Leonid Brezhnev—Ractliffe points more directly to notions of individual agency, culpability, and experience.

For her most recent series, The Borderlands, Ractliffe sought out sites in South Africa that were intricately connected to the history of the Border War and photographed their inhabitants amid their surroundings. The people she photographed, often the subjects of forced relocation and living in precarious conditions, exist at the intersection of the region's troubled history and challenging present. Works from this series show how histories of violence and dispossession under apartheid intersect with these militarized landscapes.

The Aftermath of Conflict has been organized to coincide with the special exhibition Kongo: Power and Majesty, which focuses on works created by artists in present-day Angola between the 16th and 19th centuries (on view at the Metropolitan MuseumSeptember 17, 2015–January 3, 2016). The landscapes captured by Ractliffe consider a more recent chapter of Angola's history.

The Aftermath of Conflict: Jo Ractliffe's Photographs of Angola and South Africa is curated by YaĆ«lle Biro, Associate Curator in the Department of Africa, Oceania, and the Americas at the Metropolitan Museum, together with Dr. Evelyn Owen, the 2013–2015 Mellon Curatorial Fellow at The Africa Center, New York, in collaboration with the Museum's Department of Modern and Contemporary Art and Department of Photographs.

Education programs will be offered in conjunction with the installation, including a Sunday at the Met event on October 18.

The exhibition is featured on the Museum's website, as well as on Facebook, Instagram andTwitter via the hashtag #JoRactliffe.


Lanvin Madison Avenue Windows Summer 2015 Our Coverage Sponsored by Hallak Cleaners the Couture Cleaner

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Natural Products Expo East #ExpoEast Trending to Bring Record Numbers of Attendees, Exhibitors and New Products to Baltimore In September 2015 Our Coverage Sponsored by Fresh Origins

Fresh Origins is America’s leading producer of Microgreens and Edible Flowers. Combining the benefits of an ideal climate with a deep passion for quality and innovation, Fresh Origins products are sought after by the finest restaurants and top chefs. The farm is located in the picturesque rolling hills of San Diego County, where the near perfect weather allows for production and harvest all year. Fresh Origins produces almost 400 Microgreens, Petitegreens, Edible Flowers, Shoots, Tiny Veggies™ and related items. Many are not available anywhere else, with new introductions nearly every month. Fresh Origins products are on top of the finest cuisine in the world! Fresh Origins supplies distributors of specialty produce who serve fine dining restaurants and resorts nationwide. There are also a few online sources of their products available to private chefs and home cooks. Read our first Culinary Queen interview with Kelly Sasuga: 

For more information about Fresh Origins, visit their website at 


Natural Products Expo East 2015, the East Coast’s largest natural, organic and healthy products event is poised to hit record numbers, with over 22,000 attendees and more than 1,800 exhibitors, with approximately 30% of those exhibiting for the first time and new to the marketplace. 

Produced by New Hope Natural Media, Expo East will take place September 16-19, 2015 at the Baltimore Convention Center in Maryland and is co-located with Biofach America -All Things Organic, NPA East, and the Harvest Festival. 

“The city of Baltimore has always felt like home to Expo East, providing a true community to our event with its flourishing food, art and culture scenes, a more robust inner harbor and downtown, expanded BWI airport and more new hotels. This year, Natural Products Expo has the opportunity to again make a positive impact and we look forward to our time in Charm City this September,” Adam Andersen, managing director for Natural Products Expos. 

In 2014, Expo East ranked in the top 5 Baltimore-based conventions for economic impact and brought over $17.4 million to the city last September. At the close of last year’s show, Expo East donated over 30,000 pounds of food to the Maryland Food Bank, as well as a portion of proceeds to the city’s Real food farms. Each year Expo East draws top retail buyers from independent stores, natural market chains and big box retailers - all with the mission to find the newest and hottest products shaping the future of the healthy living marketplace in one place. Markets categories represented at Expo East include natural and specialty food and beverages, supplements, pet, natural living and beauty. 

New emerging trends include: • Foods and beverages with floral ingredients such as hibiscus, elderflower and chamomile. • Coffee fruit, the refreshing and flavorful anti-oxidant rich and anti-inflammatory fruit. • Snacks using avocado oil, which has always been GMO free and is paleo friendly. The 2015 Expo East conference program is broken into six themes: Natural in the Media, Ingredient Reform, “Future of” Series, Non-GMO Series, Trends & Growth Series, and Conscious Leadership. Targeting start-ups, the Natural Products Business School returns, as a full-day of learning and networking designed to provide entrepreneurs with in-depth solutions to common business challenges and accelerate their potential success. The event’s keynote speakers include: • Dylan Ratigan, a New York Times Best-Selling author, sustainability entrepreneur and former MSNBC host. • Joel Salatin, a third generation farmer in Virginia’s Shenandoah Valley. • Michele Simon, a public health lawyer who has been writing about the food industry since 1996. New this year is the “Farm-to-Market Tour” where attendees visit some of Baltimore's nearby farms and the retail stores that source from them. Additionally, the Super Pass will be introduced to Expo East, as an “all access” pass available to attendees and exhibitors which includes networking events, exhibit hall admission and paid education sessions. For complete information on Natural Products Expo East, visit

Follow @NatProdExpo on Twitter, Facebook or LinkedIn to keep up on Natural Products Expo latest developments. #ExpoEast About New Hope Natural Media New Hope Natural Media, is the leading media resource and information provider for the natural, organic and healthy products industry, with print, in-person/event, and digital products and services.


On Goals, by John D. Rockefeller

"If your only goal is to become rich, you will never achieve it."
-John D. Rockefeller


Hedges Upon the Roof of The Met by Peachy Deegan Our Coverage Sponsored by Ellen Christine Couture Millinery, Official Milliner of Whom You Know

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With two covers on Italian Vogue, Ellen Christine is well known throughout the accessories industry, both here and in Europe.  Ellen Christine’s creation graced the American cover of the Harper's Bazaar September 2013 issue. Featured in Vogue, W Magazine, and Harper's Bazaar magazines multiple times over the past three decades of her career, Ellen Christine is much sought after by editors and celebrity clientele as well. Her hats walk into some of the best events in town. Fashion is her business, and those in the know beat their way to her Soho showroom, for private appointments, collaborations and the world’s best to put on their heads.

Photography by Peachy Deegan 

All material is property of Whom You Know. Copyright 2015 Whom You Know. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited.


First Retrospective in 20 Years of Master Photographer Irving Penn Opens Oct. 23 at the Smithsonian American Art Museum Exhibition Includes Previously Unseen Photographs and Film of Artist at Work Our Coverage Sponsored by Martin's Tavern of Georgetown Est. 1933

Bee, New York, 1995, Copyright © The Irving Penn Foundation

Established in 1933, Martin's Tavern is one of Washington DC’s most historic family-owned enterprises. For 80 years, Martin’s Tavern has been a renowned fixture in the mid-Atlantic and a must-visit establishment in historic Georgetown. In the late 1890's, William S. Martin traveled from Galway, Ireland to America. Forty years later, he and his son, William G. Martin, the current Billy's grandfather, opened Martin’s Tavern on the corner of Wisconsin Avenue and N Street NW which is run today by our friend, William A. Martin Jr. You can call him Billy! From sitting Presidents and media icons, to city residents and worldly travelers, Martin’s Tavern is a welcoming home to the many who have long embraced its warm atmosphere. Its quintessentially classic American fare has delighted discriminating palates for decades from the Oakwood Atlantic Smoked Salmon to the Filet Mignon to whatever your little heart desires from the convincing menu. Every President from Truman to George W. Bush has happily dined at Martin's Tavern, and you can see the delicious culinary choices preferred by each in our review: Martin's Tavern is Highly Recommended by Whom You Know: 

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Irving Penn (1917-2009), known for his iconic fashion, portrait and still life images that appeared in Vogue magazine, ranks as one of the foremost photographers of the 20th century. "Irving Penn: Beyond Beauty," the first retrospective of Penn's work in nearly 20 years, will celebrate his legacy as a modern master and demonstrate the photographer's continued influence on the medium.

The exhibition features work from all stages of Penn's career-street scenes from the late 1930s, photographs of the American South from the early 1940s, celebrity portraits, fashion photographs, still lifes and more private studio images. Penn's pictures reveal a taste for stark simplicity whether he was photographing celebrities, fashion models, still lifes or people in remote places of the world.

"Irving Penn: Beyond Beauty" is drawn entirely from the extensive holdings of the Smithsonian American Art Museum. On display will be 146 photographs from the museum's permanent collection, including the debut of 100 photographs recently donated to the museum by The Irving Penn Foundation. The exhibition presents 48 previously unseen or never exhibited photographs. Also on view for the first time will be Super 8 mm films of Penn in Morocco, made by his wife Lisa Fonssagrives-Penn, that add a vivid picture of the artist at work.

"Irving Penn: Beyond Beauty" will be on view from Oct. 23 through March 20, 2016; it will then travel to several cities across the United States. Merry Foresta is the guest curator; she was the museum's curator of photography from 1983 to 1999. 

"Irving Penn's art leads to many aesthetic discoveries, transcending daily life through intense leaps of feeling and understanding," said Betsy Broun, The Margaret and Terry Stent Director of the Smithsonian American Art Museum. "I am grateful to the Penn Foundation team for their generosity and for their participation at every step along our journey of discovery. They shared our excitement and encouraged us to pursue all new directions. A review of Penn's whole career persuades me that in his last 20 years he became bolder and more daring, a turn that this exhibition begins to explore."

In a career that spanned nearly 70 years, Penn's aesthetic and technical skill earned him accolades in both the artistic and commercial worlds. He was a master of both black-and-white and color photography, and his revival of platinum printing in the 1960s and 1970s was a catalyst for significant change in the art world. He was one of the first photographers to cross the chasm that separated magazine and fine-art photography, narrowing the gap between art and fashion. Penn's portraits and fashion photographs defined elegance in the 1950s, yet throughout his career he also transformed mundane objects-storefront signs, food, cigarette butts, street debris-into memorable images of unexpected, often surreal, beauty.

"From his first photographs to the ones he made in the last years of his life, Irving Penn's consistency of artistic integrity is remarkable," said Foresta. "He was able to elevate even crushed coffee cups and steel blocks to the realm of great art, printing his images with exacting care. But in the final analysis his work is not just about beauty, or about the potentials of photography as an art form, but a combination of the two that is indivisible and unique."

The 100 photographs announced as a donation to the museum in 2013 include rare street photographs from the late 1930s and 1940s, most of which are unpublished; images of post-war Europe; iconic portraits of figures such as Truman Capote, Salvador Dali and Leontyne Price; color photographs made for magazine editorials and commercial advertising; self-portraits; and some of Penn's most recognizable fashion and still life photographs. All the prints were made during the artist's lifetime and personally approved by him. In 1988, Penn donated to the museum 60 photographs, spanning his career from 1944 to 1986.

The exhibition is accompanied by a catalog, co-published by The Irving Penn Foundation and the Smithsonian American Art Museum and distributed by Yale University Press, with an essay by Foresta and an introduction by Broun. Foresta's essay introduces Penn to a younger generation and delves into his use of photography to respond to social and cultural change. The book will be for sale in the museum's store and online ($45, softcover)

National Tour
The exhibition will tour nationally following its presentation in Washington, D.C. Confirmed venues include the Dallas Museum of Art in Dallas (April 15, 2016 - Aug. 14, 2016); Lesley University, College of Art and Design in Cambridge, Mass. (Sept. 10, 2016 - Dec. 16, 2016); the Frist Center for the Visual Artsin Nashville, Tenn. (Feb. 24, 2017 - May 21, 2017); and the Wichita Art Museum in Wichita, Kan. (Sept. 30, 2017 - Jan. 7, 2018).


"Irving Penn: Beyond Beauty" is organized by the Smithsonian American Art Museum with generous support from ART MENTOR FOUNDATION LUCERNE, Sakurako and William Fisher, The William R. Kenan Jr. Endowment Fund, The Lauder Foundation - Leonard and Judy Lauder Fund, Edward Lenkin and Roselin Atzwanger, The Robert Mapplethorpe Foundation, Margery and Edgar Masinter, The Margery and Edgar Masinter Exhibitions Fund, the James F. Petersen Charitable Fund in honor of Tania and Tom Evans, The Bernie Stadiem Endowment Fund and the Trellis Fund. The C.F. Foundation in Atlanta supports the museum's traveling exhibition program, "Treasures to Go."

About the Smithsonian American Art Museum
The Smithsonian American Art Museum celebrates the vision and creativity of Americans with artworks in all media spanning more than three centuries. Its National Historic Landmark building is located at Eighth and F streets N.W., above the Gallery Place/Chinatown Metrorail station. Museum hours are 11:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. daily (closedDec. 25). Admission is free. Follow the museum on Twitter, YouTube, Tumblr, Instagram, Facebook, Flickr, iTunes U and ArtBabble. Smithsonian information: (202) 633-1000. Museum information (recorded): (202) 633-7970. Website:


People on the Roof of The Met by Peachy Deegan Our Coverage Sponsored by Maine Woolens

Maine Woolens is a weaver of blanket and throws located in Brunswick, Maine. We work primarily with natural fibers, like cottons and worsted wools and are committed to using renewable natural fibers from American growers whenever possible. We do piece dyeing and package dyeing in house and the combined experience of our excellent employees exceeds 300 years. Our wool and cotton blankets and throws are 100 percent machine washable, soft and luxurious to the touch, cozy warm and comfortably light. We have many styles to choose from. Our clients are very positive about our products and happy to support a Made in Maine, USA company.  Jo Miller is a Mover and Shaker:
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Photography by Peachy Deegan 
All material is property of Whom You Know. Copyright 2015 Whom You Know. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or in part without permission is prohibited.


Introducing Folkmanis® Newest Puppets Mini Owl, Great Horned! Perfect to Help with All Back to School Homework...

No one likes homework, and someone we know here used to complain about it quite a lot.  But if you have to do it, you might as well make it fun!  This wise little owl is the perfect homework helper for back to school, and is an entertaining finger puppet by Folkmanis, the best in puppets worldwide.  We've been singing their praises for years, and they make nearly every animal imaginable, and probably the ones you didn't imagine too!
This makes a fun gift for every student you know who is sad about summer ending...! With her big watchful eyes, this MINI GREAT HORNED OWL finger puppet seeks a perch atop your finger. Whooo wants to play?

Whom You Know announced our continued coverage of Folkmanis here:

Folkmanis® Puppets is the premiere manufacturer of high-quality, specialty plush puppets. Widely regarded as the most creative, innovative puppet-maker in the world since 1976, Folkmanis consistently designs beautifully crafted, award-winning toys that inspire imagination and play for all ages. 

Born from the bright mind of Judy Folkmanis in her living room more than 35 years ago, Judy combined her skill of sewing with her desire to entertain her two young sons and began making puppets. Encouraged when her creations began attracting a growing group of paying customers, most often other parents who sought educational toys with high play value, she continued to sew and sell. Throughout the next few years, Judy took her love of nature and animals and began designing and expanding her hobby, selling through word of mouth and at street fairs, such as the famed Telegraph Avenue in Berkeley, California. 

In 1976, when her husband Atis achieved his Ph.D., her puppets had become so popular that the couple decided to turn Judy’s part-time hobby into a full-time vocation. Over the past three decades, Judy’s and Atis’ dream has become a burgeoning enterprise, and they, along with their talented staff, have built a world-wide reputation for developing puppets that spark creativity, promote hands-on discovery, encourage interaction, teach fine and gross motor skills, help develop early language, and become a child’s lovable companion to be treasured for years. Brilliantly designed and carefully detailed, the company’s lineup includes a virtual menagerie of plush pets and friendly wildlife friends with new designs constantly on the drawing board.

Still family owned and operated, the two sons, Dan and Jason who inspired Judy more than 35 years ago, both work in different capacities on different continents. The core beliefs that have sustained and grown Folkmanis world-wide remain today as the company endeavors to maintain the wholehearted approval of kids, parents, teachers, and child development experts around the world. Folkmanis aspires to create puppets that kids will love to play with; that parents will love to use to interact with their children; and that child development experts and teachers will utilize for their educational and social benefits. Their low-tech, time-tested, award-winning puppets are educational, captivating, lovable, and have endless play value for generations.

“The success that Folkmanis Puppets has enjoyed for more than 35 years simply reinforces the fact that when it comes to children, old-fashioned, open-ended play patterns are the best, and the simplest toys are really the healthiest gifts one can buy for a child,” says Elaine Kollias, marketing director. “That is why puppets are so firmly in the ‘good toy’ category – not just that they encourage and inspire imaginative play, but that they represent a thoughtful and fun gift that is more than ‘just’ a toy.”

Folkmanis believes imagination is the key to a healthy childhood, encouraging play and discovery to develop the skills necessary in life. The company has been making the most innovative and engaging specialty puppets in the world since 1976, delighting imaginations and winning nearly every industry, child development, and kid-tested award – many repeatedly. Most Folkmanis® Puppets are recommended for ages 3 and up and are available at specialty toy and gift stores, including: science/nature museums, zoo and aquarium gift shops, thousands of independent toy and gift stores, and specialty retailers nationwide and in more than 15 countries around the world. 


Lenovo Scholar Network Expands to 30 NAF Academies Enabling High School Students to Develop Mobile Apps #LenovoScholars

Lenovo and NAF partnership encourages interest in STEM subjects and high-tech skills among high school students

Lenovo and NAF enter 2nd year together, welcoming 20 new academies for the 2015-2016 academic year
Lenovo is donating the latest ThinkPad and YOGA devices to aid underserved students in STEM technology learning

Participating academies will have access to Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Media Lab’s App Inventor development tool to build and test appsBuilding off the success of its inaugural 2014-2015 academic year with 10 high schools participating, Lenovo and NAF today announced 20 new NAF academies have been selected to participate in the Lenovo Scholar Network during the 2015-2016 academic year. The program, which is designed to enable the next generation of developers and entrepreneurs through a rich application development curriculum, will include 600-700 additional NAF students in its second year. Lenovo will provide each of the participating schools with Lenovo ThinkPad laptops and YOGA tablets that will be used to aid students in the coding, testing and development of their mobile apps and help teachers and mentors with the implementation of the curriculum.

Lenovo Scholar Network student teams and schools will also participate in a national competition focused on designing and developing a mobile app and a business plan for taking the app to market. 

Since officially launching the Lenovo Scholar Network in July 2014, NAF has received a record number of applications from NAF academies across the United States eager to participate in the 2015-2016 program. The latest academies selected to the Lenovo Scholar Network include:

Academy of Engineering and Green Technology
Hartford, CT Gateway Academy to
Innovation and Technology
Academy of Health Sciences
Hopkinsville, KY

Phelps Architecture, Construction 
and Engineering High School Academy of Engineering
Washington, DC

Benjamin Carson High School of Science and Medicine Academy of Health Sciences
Detroit, MI
Immokalee High School Academy of Information Technology
Immokalee, FL

School of Executive Leadership & Entrepreneurial Development at Olympic High School
Academy of Hospitality &Tourism
Charlotte, NC

Boone High School
Academy of Finance
Orlando, FL

Justin F. Kimball High School Academy of Engineering
Dallas, TX

Southeast Raleigh Magnet High School Academy of Engineering
Raleigh, NC

Brooklyn Academy of Global Finance
Brooklyn, NY

Mission Oak High School
Academy of Engineering
Tulare, CA

Village Academy High School Academy of Information Technology
Pomona, CA

Crooms Academy of Information Technology
Sanford, FL

North Division High School
Academy of Information
Milwaukee, WI
Warren Easton Charter High School Academy of Engineering,
New Orleans, LA

Dunbar Senior High School
Academy of Engineering Washington, DC

Omaha South High School
Academy of Finance &
Academy of Information Technology
Omaha, NE
Woodrow Wilson High School Academy of Engineering
Dallas, TX

Edward C. Merlo Institute of Environmental Technology Academy of Engineering 
Stockton, CA
Patterson High School
Academy of Engineering
Baltimore, MD

Through the Lenovo Scholar Network, students are given the opportunity to participate in mobile app development experiences that provide them with the knowledge, resources and practical experience to support their college and future career success. The Lenovo Scholar Network is designed to encourage greater interest among underserved high school students in Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) subjects while providing them with the high-tech skills needed to succeed in the 21st century.

Last school year, more than 400 high school students from 10 NAF Academies of Information Technology participated in the Lenovo Scholar Network. Twenty apps were submitted for the Lenovo Scholar Network National Competition with five teams selected as winners. The student groups behind these winning apps attended NAF Next in Anaheim, Calif., in July where a fan favorite winner was announced – a bowling app created by students at Washington High School Academy of Information Technology in Milwaukee, Wis., that sends positive messages to teenagers and discourages bullying. This year, the program will expand to include students from across all of NAF’s career themes of engineering, IT, finance, health sciences, and hospitality and tourism.

Selected academies will be granted access to Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Media Lab’s App Inventor development tool, a web-based tool for creating Android apps, to build and test their apps on Lenovo devices. NAF and MIT work together to provide technical assistance and to develop support materials for teachers using MIT App Inventor. This year, in conjunction with MIT, NAF will offer access to a self-guided course for teachers on App Inventor, an in-person teacher training, and regular “open office hours” with MIT staff via Google Hangout.

To find out more about the Lenovo Scholar Network and follow along with students’ app creation journey, visit or check out the #LenovoScholars hashtag on social media. 

“After the success of our inaugural year, we look forward to continuing our partnership with NAF through the Lenovo Scholar Network, providing students with the STEM skills needed to succeed in today’s workplace. The high school students at the 20 academies selected this year will participate in a robust mobile app development program designed to enrich their critical thinking, team building and analytical skills, and provide them with real-world learning opportunities. We are excited to enable this new class of scholars with the technology and skills they need to help them become the next generation of developers and innovators,” said Jason Mooneyham, vice president of Public Sector, Lenovo North America.

“Partnering with Lenovo has kept our academies on the cutting edge of a fast growing and ever-changing industry. Expanding this opportunity to include students from all NAF academy themes means arming more students with applied STEM skills that are relevant in today’s economy and assuring their preparedness for the future,” said JD Hoye, President of NAF.

About Lenovo
Lenovo is a $46 billion global Fortune 500 company and a leader in providing innovative consumer, commercial, and enterprise technology. Our portfolio of high-quality, secure products and services covers PCs (including the legendary Think and multimode YOGA brands), workstations, servers, storage, smart TVs and a family of mobile products like smartphones (including the Motorola brand), tablets and apps. Join us on LinkedIn, follow us on Facebook or Twitter (@Lenovo) or visit us

About NAF 
NAF is a national network of education, business, and community leaders who work together to ensure high school students are college, career, and future ready. NAF’s educational design ignites students’ passion for learning and gives businesses the opportunity to shape America’s future workforce by transforming the learning environment to include STEM infused industry-specific curricula and work-based learning experiences, including internships. Since 1982, NAF has been partnering with existing high schools in high-needs communities to enhance school systems at a low cost by implementing NAF academies – small learning communities within traditional high schools. NAF has grown from one NAF Academy of Finance in New York City to hundreds of academies across the country focusing on growing industries including: finance, hospitality & tourism, information technology, engineering, and health sciences. During the 2014-15 school year nearly 82,000 students attended 667 NAF academies across 38 states, including DC and the US Virgin Islands. In 2014, NAF academies reported 97% of seniors graduated with 93% of graduates planning to go to college. For more information visit


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