Tuesday, October 21, 2014

NYSHM #3 - An Evening with Vernon Benjamin - Monday, November 10

Art, Literature, Industry and Conflict on the HudsonAuthor Vernon Benjamin Discusses
The History of the Hudson River Valley


New York State History Month was established by an act of the Legislature in 1997. But for many years, people have been lamenting the lack of programming to mark History Month, including New York State Historian Robert Weible who asked in a blog post, “Is New York State History Month Dead?” With a tip of the hat to Mark Twain, we’d like to say that reports of its death have been greatly exaggerated. 


On Monday, November 10, the University Club will welcome author Vernon Benjamin as he discusses his book The History of the Hudson River Valley: From Wilderness to the Civil War (Overlook Hardcover, June 4, 2014). Vernon Benjamin has lectured on the history of the Hudson Valley at Marist College and Bard College since 2003. He holds a Masters in Literature from Long Island University and a Bachelors degree in Sociology from Siena College. A former editor of the New Saugerties Times, he has written extensively on the Hudson Valley for various publications and has appeared on C-SPAN. He lives in Saugerties, New York.

The event will be held at 6:00 p.m. at the National Register-listed University Club of Albany, 141 Washington Avenue, and will include a meet the author reception from 6:00 – 7:00 p.m., followed by the presentation and book signing. Books will be available for purchase. 

As historian Benjamin chronicles, the Hudson River Valley has been a place of contradictions since its first settlement by Europeans. Discovered by an Englishman who claimed it for the Dutch, the region soon became home to the most vibrant trading outpost for the New World colonies—the Island of Manhattan—even as the rest of the valley retained the native beauty that would inspire artists from James Fenimore Cooper to Thomas Cole. 

The presentation is one of a series of 10 events comprising a Celebration of New York State History Month in November, 2014. Presented by the University Club of Albany Foundation, a 501c3 corporation, the events will be open to the public. The month-long celebration will include luncheons, evening lectures – even a digital photo scavenger hunt – featuring experts in a variety of disciplines discussing the history of New York State and the Albany area. 

New York State History Month at the University Club is sponsored by AT&T, which has long supported the Foundation’s educational programming. Media sponsor is the Times Union. Additional support is provided by the William G. Pomeroy Foundation; the New York State Academy of Family Physicians; TD Bank; and Capital Wine & Spirits.

There is no cost for the program but reservations are required. Reservations for the November 10 program are required by Friday, November 7 and may be made by calling the Club at 518-463-1151; by sending an email to ellen@universityclubalbany.com; or online.


Guests are encouraged to share the warmth of the season with our neighbors in need by making a contribution to the Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York. The University Club will have a large collection box on display in the lobby, and will accept donations of non-perishable food items and checks made payable to “Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York” throughout the month of November. For every $1 donated, the Regional Food Bank can distribute $10 worth of food. 

New York State History Month programs at the U Club are:

  • Monday, November 3 - Mayor’s Luncheon - Albany: Our History, Our Future; 
  • Friday, November 7 - Reception - A Celebration of New York State History Month – Honoring the artist Len Tantillo;
  • Monday, November 10 - 6 p.m. - Presentation - Art, Literature, Industry and Conflict on the Hudson with author Vernon Benjamin;
  • Thursday, November 13 - Dinner - Sharing a U Club Tradition: The 106th Annual Duck Dinner;
  • Friday, November 14 - 6 p.m. - Presentation - Haunted History in the North Country: The Legend of Major Duncan Campbell with Duncan Crary;
  • Tuesday, November 18 - 6 p.m. - Panel Discussion - Building Modern Social Justice Movements with Barbara Smith and Dr. Virginia Eubanks, moderated by Elaine Houston of WNYT;
  • Wednesday, November 19 - Luncheon - Achievement and Betrayal at the New York State  Capitol - 1913 - a discussion of Gov. Sulzer with former Assemblyman Mark J. F. Schroeder;
  • Friday, November 21 - 6 p.m. - Reception - History Hunt Wrap-Up Party; 
  • Monday, November 24 - Luncheon - New York’s Tradition of Innovation with P. Thomas Carroll, Senior Scholar and Treasurer, Hudson Mohawk Industrial Gateway; and
  • Tuesday, November 25 - 6 p.m.  - Presentation - Hands On History with Ann Pfau and Dave Hochfelder, founders of the “98 Acres in Albany” project, a study of buildings demolished and families uprooted for the construction of the Empire State Plaza.

New York State History Month programming is presented by the University Club of Albany Foundation, a 501c3 corporation. The Foundation was formed in 2009 to recognize and maintain the unique historic and architectural significance of the National Register-listed University Club building, its historic neighborhood and the city of Albany, where it has been located since its inception in 1901.

For more information about the University Club’s celebration of New York State History Month, including program updates, please visit www.universityclubalbany.com .

Monday, October 13, 2014

NYSHM #2 - Len Tantillo Reception

A Celebration of New York State History Month
Honoring the Artist Len Tantillo 


New York State History Month was established by an act of the Legislature in 1997. But for many years, people have been lamenting the lack of programming to mark History Month, including New York State Historian Robert Weible who asked in a blog post, “Is New York State History Month Dead?” With a tip of the hat to Mark Twain, we’d like to say that reports of its death have been greatly exaggerated. 

ALBANY, NY – October 12, 2014 – The signature event of the University Club’s Celebration of New York State History Month, a cocktail reception honoring the artist Len Tantillo, will be held on Friday, November 7 at the National Register-listed University Club of Albany, 141 Washington Avenue.

At the reception, Len Tantillo will be presented the inaugural University Club Award for Achievement in History and Culture. Tantillo was born and raised in upstate New York and attended Rhode Island School of Design. He worked as an architectural designer and architectural illustrator. In 1980, Tantillo was commissioned to depict a series of 19th century structures from archeological artifacts and historic documents, and in 1984 began the full-time pursuit of fine art. As he went on to study, envision and illustrate the early built environment of New York State, his artwork has garnered high acclaim and engaged audiences around the world.

The reception is one in a series of 10 events comprising a Celebration of New York State History Month in November, 2014. Presented by the University Club of Albany Foundation, a 501c3 corporation, the events will be open to the public. The month-long celebration will include luncheons, evening lectures – even a digital photo scavenger hunt – featuring experts in a variety of disciplines discussing the history of New York State and the Albany area.

New York State History Month at the University Club is sponsored by AT&T, which has long supported the Foundation’s educational programming. Media sponsor is the Times Union. Additional support is provided by the William G. Pomeroy Foundation; the New York State Academy of Family Physicians; TD Bank; and Capital Wine & Spirits.

The cost for the reception, which includes light fare and open bar, is $50 and reservations are required. A meet-the-artist reception will be held from 6:00 – 7:00 p.m. with the program commencing at 7:00. Reservations for the November 7 reception are required by Wednesday, November 5 and may be made by calling the Club at 518-463-1151; by sending an email to ellen@universityclubalbany.com; or online with PayPal or a credit card.

Guests are encouraged to share the warmth of the season with our neighbors in need by making a contribution to the Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York. The University Club will have a large collection box on display in the lobby, and will accept donations of non-perishable food items and checks made payable to “Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York” throughout the month of November. For every $1 donated, the Regional Food Bank can distribute $10 worth of food.
New York State History Month programs at the U Club are:

  • Monday, November 3 - Mayor’s Luncheon - Albany: Our History, Our Future; 
  • Friday, November 7 - Reception - A Celebration of New York State History Month – Honoring the artist Len Tantillo;
  • Monday, November 10 - 6 p.m. - Presentation - Art, Literature, Industry and Conflict on the Hudson with author Vernon Benjamin;
  • Thursday, November 13 - Dinner - Sharing a U Club Tradition: The 106th Annual Duck Dinner; 
  • Friday, November 14 - 6 p.m. - Presentation - Haunted History in the North Country: The Legend of Major Duncan Campbell with Duncan Crary;
  • Tuesday, November 18 - 6 p.m. - Panel Discussion - Building Modern Social Justice Movements with Barbara Smith and Dr. Virginia Eubanks, moderated by Elaine Houston of WNYT;
  • Wednesday, November 19 - Luncheon - Achievement and Betrayal at the New York State  Capitol - 1913 - a discussion of Gov. Sulzer with former Assemblyman Mark J. F. Schroeder;
  • Friday, November 21 - 6 p.m. - Reception - History Hunt Wrap-Up Party; 
  • Monday, November 24 - Luncheon - New York’s Tradition of Innovation with P. Thomas Carroll, Senior Scholar and Treasurer, Hudson Mohawk Industrial Gateway; and
  • Tuesday, November 25 - 6 p.m.  - Presentation - Hands On History with Ann Pfau and Dave Hochfelder, founders of the “98 Acres in Albany” project, a study of buildings demolished and families uprooted for the construction of the Empire State Plaza.

New York State History Month programming is presented by the University Club of Albany Foundation, a 501c3 corporation. The Foundation was formed in 2009 to recognize and maintain the unique historic and architectural significance of the National Register-listed University Club building, its historic neighborhood and the city of Albany, where it has been located since its inception in 1901.

For more information about the University Club’s celebration of New York State History Month, including program updates, please visit www.universityclubalbany.com .

NYSHM #1 - Mayor's Lunch - 11/3


Albany: Our History, Our Future
Mayor’s Luncheon Kicks Off NYS History Month


New York State History Month was established by an act of the Legislature in 1997. But for many years, people have been lamenting the lack of programming to mark History Month, including New York State Historian Robert Weible who asked in a blog post, “Is New York State History Month Dead?” With a tip of the hat to Mark Twain, we’d like to say that reports of its death have been greatly exaggerated. 


The University Club will kick off its celebration of New York State History Month with a luncheon with Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan, who will discuss Albany’s rich history and the role of heritage tourism in the city’s future. The event will be held on Monday, November 3, at the National Register-listed University Club of Albany, 141 Washington Avenue.

The luncheon is the first in a series of 10 events comprising a Celebration of New York State History Month in November, 2014. Presented by the University Club of Albany Foundation, a 501c3 corporation, the events will be open to the public. The month-long celebration will include luncheons, evening lectures – even a digital photo scavenger hunt – featuring experts in a variety of disciplines discussing the history of New York State and the Albany area.

New York State History Month at the University Club is sponsored by AT&T, which has long supported the Foundation’s educational programming. Media sponsor is the Times Union. Additional support for this event is provided by the William G. Pomeroy Foundation; the New York State Academy of Family Physicians; TD Bank; and Capital Wine & Spirits.

The cost for the luncheon is $25 and reservations are required. The University Club will serve a hot and cold buffet from 12:00 noon to 1:00 p.m., with the program commencing at 12:30. Reservations for the November 3 luncheon are required by Friday, October 31 and may be made by calling the Club at 518-463-1151; by sending an email to ellen@universityclubalbany.com; or online with PayPal or a credit card.

Guests are encouraged to share the warmth of the season with our neighbors in need by making a contribution to the Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York. The University Club will have a large collection box on display in the lobby, and will accept donations of non-perishable food items and checks made payable to “Regional Food Bank of Northeastern New York” throughout the month of November. For every $1 donated, the Regional Food Bank can distribute $10 worth of food.
New York State History Month programs at the U Club are:

  • Monday, November 3 - Mayor’s Luncheon - Albany: Our History, Our Future; 
  • Friday, November 7 - Reception - A Celebration of New York State History Month – Honoring the artist Len Tantillo;
  • Monday, November 10 - 6 p.m. - Presentation - Art, Literature, Industry and Conflict on the Hudson with author Vernon Benjamin;
  • Thursday, November 13 - Dinner - Sharing a U Club Tradition: The 106th Annual Duck Dinner;
  • Friday, November 14 - 6 p.m. - Presentation - Haunted History in the North Country: The Legend of Major Duncan Campbell with Duncan Crary;
  • Tuesday, November 18 - 6 p.m. - Panel Discussion - Building Modern Social Justice Movements with Barbara Smith and Dr. Virginia Eubanks, moderated by Elaine Houston of WNYT;
  • Wednesday, November 19 - Luncheon - Achievement and Betrayal at the New York State  Capitol - 1913 - a discussion of Gov. Sulzer with former Assemblyman Mark J. F. Schroeder;
  • Friday, November 21 - 6 p.m. - Reception - History Hunt Wrap-Up Party; 
  • Monday, November 24 - Luncheon - New York’s Tradition of Innovation with P. Thomas Carroll, Senior Scholar and Treasurer, Hudson Mohawk Industrial Gateway; and
  • Tuesday, November 25 - 6 p.m.  - Presentation - Hands On History with Ann Pfau and Dave Hochfelder, founders of the “98 Acres in Albany” project, a study of buildings demolished and families uprooted for the construction of the Empire State Plaza.

New York State History Month programming is presented by the University Club of Albany Foundation, a 501c3 corporation. The Foundation was formed in 2009 to recognize and maintain the unique historic and architectural significance of the National Register-listed University Club building, its historic neighborhood and the city of Albany, where it has been located since its inception in 1901.

For more information about the University Club’s celebration of New York State History Month, including program updates, please visit www.universityclubalbany.com .

Monday, October 6, 2014

"The Language of Houses" with author Alison Lurie - Mon. 10/20

Buildings have a story to tell us if we know how to listen, says Alison Lurie, the Pulitzer Prize-winning novelist and author of THE LANGUAGE OF HOUSES: How Buildings Speak to Us (Delphinium Books; August 19, 2014).

Lurie, the 2012-2014 New York State Author, will discuss her latest book at the National Register-listed University Club of Albany, 141 Washington Avenue at Dove Street, on Monday, October 20. The evening will begin with a meet-the-author reception at 6:00 p.m., and a discussion of the book at 7:00 p.m. followed by a book signing. After the presentation, attendees are invited to stay for dinner, with cash or credit cards accepted.

The event is open to the public and presented by the University Club Foundation with the Preservation League of New York State; Historic Albany Foundation; and the Society of Architectural Historians, Turpin Bannister Chapter. Admission to the reception and presentation, which includes light fare and cash bar, is $20 for the general public, $15 for members of the presenting organizations. Books will be available for purchase courtesy of the Book House of Stuyvesant Plaza. Reservations are required and may be made by calling the University Club at 518-463-1151 or reserve online with a credit card.

In her entertaining and fascinating exploration of the secret language of architecture, Alison Lurie acts as interpreter and at times biographer for the structures all around us. She explains why your house is as shameless as a tabloid, revealing all about the family living within it. We also learn what the public buildings that surround our lives say—and sometimes shout—about what goes on inside them and the human beings they are meant to serve.

While there are many books on architecture and shelter design, THE LANGUAGE OF HOUSES goes beneath the surface to explore the psychological, social and emotional meanings of homes, schools, churches, government buildings, museums, prisons, hospitals, restaurants and so much more. Lurie explains why museums by their design announce whether we’ve entered a classical temple, a palace of learning or a science laboratory. She shows how hospitals, prisons and retirement communities are designed to isolate their inhabitants from daily life, and explores how our shopping environments scream, “SAVE!” when they mean “SPEND!”

In 1981 Lurie’s The Language of Clothes investigated costume and fashion as an expression of history, social status, and individual psychology.  Amusing, enlightening, and full of literary allusion, the book was highly praised and widely anthologized.  THE LANGUAGE OF HOUSES continues in the same vein, enlightening us about the structures we’ve built and how they both reflect and affect us.

Alison Lurie is the author of 10 novels, including Foreign Affairs (Pulitzer Prize, 1985) and The Truth About Lorin Jones (Prix Femina Etranger, 1989). Her most recent novel, Truth and Consequences, appeared in 2005. She has received numerous honors including Guggenheim and Rockefeller Foundation grants, the American Academy of Arts and Letters Award in Fiction, and a D. Litt. from Oxford University. She is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, and the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. Lurie has taught literature, folklore, humor, and writing at Cornell University since 1969 and is now the Frederic J. Whiton Professor of American Literature emerita.

This event is presented by the University Club of Albany Foundation, Inc., formed to recognize and maintain the unique historic and architectural significance of the University Club building and property, its historic neighborhood and the city of Albany, where it has been located since its inception in 1901. One need not be a member of the University Club to attend. Support for educational programming presented by the University Club Foundation is provided by AT&T.

Thursday, September 25, 2014

1st Friday with MotherJudge - 10/3!

Americana alt-folk diva Caroline MotherJudge and friends are coming back to the U. Club! Here's what Mother Judge had to say about a previous appearance ...

"Join us in one of our favorite rooms for 'Songs to Make you Want to Sing & Dance.' Great food & fellowship at the historic University Club, the jewel in the midtown Albany crown. Support First Friday! Get out, get some culture, see old friends and enjoy the season with something a bit more relaxing. See you there!"

On the first Friday of each month, the University Club celebrates the arts and culture in Albany by serving as a 1st Friday venue, with free live music from 8 - 10 p.m. One need not be a member to enjoy music, dinner and dancing in the Grille Room, dress is casual, and cash and major credit cards are accepted. Call 518-463-1151 to reserve a table for dinner, served until 9 p.m.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Uncork Autumn! Friday, 9/26

Autumn Harvest Buffet, Tasting, Wine Pull and Raffle


Celebrate the bounty of the season and support the University Club Foundation with a Harvest Buffet dinner, a wine pull, or both!

The University Club Foundation will host Uncork Autumn! on Friday, September 26 from 5:30 – 8:30 p.m. Mark Brogna of Capital Wine & Spirits on Lark Street in Albany is lining up a tasting featuring wines that were recently added to the U. Club’s Fall & Winter Wine List. The tasting is included in the price of the Harvest Buffet.

At the Wine Pull station, everyone’s a winner – for a $20 ticket, guests will choose from a “grab bag” of bottles, choice of red or white. Many of the bottles will be valued at more than $20, and all of the bottles in the Wine Pull have been carefully chosen to please! Raffle tickets will also be available during the evening for $5 each, and participants may enter drawings for collectible wines and other seasonal prizes.

Uncork Autumn! is presented by the University Club of Albany Foundation, and one need not be a member of the Club to attend. The cost for the Buffet and Tasting is $30 and includes tax and gratuity, beverages are additional. The Tasting will be held from 5:30 – 6:30, the Buffet from 7:00 – 8:00 p.m., and the Wine Pull and Raffle will take place at 8:30 p.m.

The Harvest Buffet will include the freshest foods rich with the flavors of autumn, including:

  • Butternut Squash & Ginger Soup; 
  • Rosemary Roasted Game Hen; 
  • Sliced Beef Tenderloin; 
  • Sweet Potato Encrusted Salmon; 
  • Garlic & Parmesan Fingerlings and 
  • Seasonal Vegetables

Reservations are required and may be made by calling the University Club at 518-463-1151. You may also purchase your tickets and wine pull chances online with PayPal or a credit card.

A portion of the proceeds from the evening will benefit the University Club of Albany Foundation, a 501c3 corporation. The Foundation was formed in 2009 to recognize and maintain the unique historic and architectural significance of the National Register-listed University Club building, its historic neighborhood and the city of Albany, where it has been located since its inception in 1901.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

1st Friday with Jeff Strange - 9/5!

On Friday, September 5, Jeff Strange returns to the University Club as we re-boot our 1st Friday Concert Series after its summer hiatus!

A founding member of internationally-known Irish folk band Donnybrook Fair and longtime member of The Newports, Jeff is known for his on-stage patter and energetic performances incorporating a broad selection of Irish, rock and original music.

Jeff will play in the Grille Room from 8:00 - 10:00 p.m. The performance is free and dinner will be served until 9:00 p.m., please call 518-463-1151 for reservations.

On the first Friday of each month, as part of the University Club’s celebration of 1st Friday, one need not be a member to enjoy live music, dinner and dancing in the Grille Room, dress is casual, and cash and major credit cards are accepted. Come be a part of the downtown arts walk that showcases Albany's thriving and lively art scene!

*MAKE A NIGHT OF IT* and join us at 6:00 p.m. for a Meet the Artist Reception with Ken Ragsdale, the U Club's first Artist in Residence. He'll have a solo show in the Club's living room and lobby through December, and this is the public's first chance to see it! Please RSVP through Eventbrite, by calling the Club at 518-463-1151 or by email.