The New York Knicks beat the Milwaukee Bucks at Madison Square Garden

New York Knicks at MSG

Lucky Duck attends his first Knicks game.

It was an incredible opportunity to get four Club Seats at The Knicks game this weekend. I picked my favorite people from work and loved crossing another bucket list item off my list. I couldn’t have attended with a better group of gals, or had a better time. I love my life in New York City, thanks to these people.

Tickets My favorite people

And here are The New York Knicks

Pre-game festivities always excite me, so I raced uptown to Madison Square Garden to catch the team’s announcement and order up some nachos from Club in-seat service. We had an incredible view, poised to be spoiled for the next two and a half hours.

My moment of a-ha!

As I chatted about some work related projects during the game, I was excited to know that I was “doing business” at a Knicks basketball game, in a killer seat, in New York City. And not only that, but I was hosting the experience, and that made me feel proud and happy. A guy didn’t buy me the tickets. A boss didn’t invite the team. I scored these tickets at my killer job in advertising, and I got to take my favorite colleagues and friends out to MSG to see The New York Knicks. This wouldn’t have happened in Seattle, and as the moment sunk in, I recognized that taking a chance on a new life in New York City was a smart decision and that I did the right thing.

The New York Knicks win

And fittingly, I got to see the Knicks win during my first game! As I was leaving Madison Square Garden, I texted my dad, “I love my life today!” and I meant it. It was such an awesome afternoon.

New York Knicks win

There’s always something cool in New York

After a year and a half in The Big Apple, I love that I’m still doing new things week over week. When I left Seattle and first got out here, I couldn’t have guessed where I’d be a year and a half out. These days, New York feels like home, and I know in my heart that there’s no going back. This New Yorker bleeds blue, and I’m here to stay for a while.

More from my musings at MSG

My first Rangers game at MSG Read the post and watch a video from my first New York Rangers hockey game at MSG:
My first bull riding event at MSG Read the post and watch video from my first bull riding event at MSG, courtesy of Monster Energy Drink:

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Empire Diner reopens in Chelsea New York City

Empire Diner has reopened

Lucky Duck dines at Empire Diner twice in one week.

The Empire Diner in New York City is back! And I’ve indulged in its delicious menu, dim lighting, exceptional service, and lively vibe twice this week. Twice. This week.

A New York icon is back in business

The Art Moderne dining car at 210 10th Ave. in New York City has been in movies, such as Men In Black and Home Alone 2. It has a Wikipedia page. After a brief closure recently, The Empire Diner is open, back in business, under new management, and better than ever.

The service is stellar, and Chelsea is lucky to have such an awesome spot to enjoy a five star experience at a very fair price point, among a buzzing atmosphere. Seriously, how cool is this?

Empire Diner back open

What to order

Anything! I actually ordered the Brussels sprouts twice because they were so delicious. I love absolutely everything that I’ve eaten at The Empire Diner. The menu’s aesthetic is retro, but the dishes are modern and filled with flavor. Amanda Freitag, the head chef, is in-arguably one of New York City’s best chefs.

From the incredible menu, I picked (aside from the Brussels sprouts) (among a table of friends to share – don’t judge) the kale salad, the octopus Greek salad, the orzo mac & cheese, cauliflower, salt and pepper fries, French onion soup, lemon chicken, banana split, and peanut butter cream pie with pomegranate jelly.

Banana Split at Empire Diner NYC

Here is a video of the food at my table, as well as some commentary describing how excited I was to be back at my new favorite spot.

Meeting Amanda Freitag, the chef

The attention to detail, in every aspect, is top-notch. Amanda Freitag personally checks in on guests and prepares the menu. It was an honor to meet her!

Amanda, Chef at Empire Diner

Cheers to New York City’s newest gem

I hope that you’ll try Empire Diner and let me know what you ordered and what you think. I already can’t wait to go back and try the Green Plate Special, a rotating dish, left up to the element of surprise.

So make a reservation: 212-596-7523

Pier 60 cocktail at Empire Diner

Aviva Drescher launches new book, Leggy Blonde, at Red Door Spa

Shannon and John with gift bags

Lucky Duck celebrates New York Housewife, Aviva Drescher’s, new book.

John Basedow and I attended an exciting event together at the Elizabeth Arden Red Door Spa in New York City. The Big Apple’s amazing Aviva Drescher launched her new book, Leggy Blonde.

Leggy Blonde by Aviva Drescher

#LeggyBlonde throws a fantastic party

The tent was packed at the 5th Ave. Beauty Mecca. Fig & Olive catered. Naked Grape was pouring. The flowers by Marzan Flowers were stunning.

Fig & Olive cater Open Bar (2) Beautiful florals

Andy Cohen made an appearance.

Aviva Drescher and Andy Cohen

The family looked beautiful.


Books were flying off of the shelf.

Book Signing

The gift bags were generous.

Gift bags from Red Door Spa

Mini-makeovers took over the lobby.

Makeovers at Red Door Spa Nail Polish

The cake was pretty incredible.

the cake

John Basedow and I rock the step and repeat

He is one of my favorite people in New York City, and as always, we killed the step and repeat.

Shannon and John point on the step and repeat Shannon Truax and John Basedow
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My first mouse in New York City or Ever

UPDATE: (2/13/14) I am pleased to report that I never saw Mickey. Not in a trap. Not scurrying around. Not eating out of my trash. I am hoping this issue has been resolved by the patchwork they did.

Mouse Trap Board Game from the 80s - 90s

Lucky Duck catches mice.

The unthinkable happened. Ok, I exaggerate – I do live in New York City, so I shouldn’t be too shocked. Nevertheless, I was completely traumatized when I woke up, walked into my kitchen to make coffee, and saw that a critter scratched the hell out of my garbage bag. Hashtag EEK!

How it happended

#myfavorite person in New York City came over to my place to personally make me his signature dish – Spaghetti Bolognese! He rolled fresh pasta for me with a rolling pin and made me the sauce from scratch.

#myfavorite makes me an amazing meal

My piece was to chop the carrot and celery for the sauce in advance, and I chopped too much. After a while, the extras dried out in my fridge so I dumped them in the wastebasket and went to bed.

An odd dream predicts the events

Later that night, I had an extremely timely dream. In the dream, I was laying in my bed, and I saw something odd on my wall. As I investigated, I realized that it was a hole, and someone was LIVING in my wall! When I called my apartment management company, they were unsympathetic and told me that this happens in New York City, and to get used to it. I woke up in a sweat, went to my kitchen to make coffee, and I saw the Mickey issue first hand in my garbage can! I felt sick.

Dealing with the problem

Obviously, I was shocked and traumatized. I called my building’s management company, and they did not tell me “tough luck.” They were very sympathetic and showed up with two contractors who patched two holes and laid glue boards around the borders of my walls.

What are glue boards?

So, glue boards are designed to catch the mice as they run along the perimeter of your apartment. I was asking my seasoned New York friends about this, and overall, they think that there is a 2% chance that I will actually catch a mouse. They think that after Mickey feasted, he went back through the wall, and now that I’m patched, I’m good. Time will tell.

But let’s say, for kicks and giggles, that Mickey is still hanging around Club Shannon…. I have to pick the glue board up, mouse stuck to it, put it in a garbage bag, and throw it out in the trash!

I’m horrified. If I have to do that, I’ll die.

Stay tuned

Please cross your fingers. I don’t want to have to do that. However, if I do, I have to admit that it will be a solid NYC rite of passage. And hey, you know the saying… if you can make it here, you can make it anywhere!

Oh… and I should add that #myfavorite’s Spaghetti Bolognese was awesome, and I still have two large sauces in the freezer. I’ll probably head out to the Italian grocery store in Chelsea Market this weekend to get some yummy noodles for it. Of course they won’t compare to the fresh hand-roll pappardelle, but it’s little more authentic than Barilla.

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Foo Fighters and Zac Brown Band blow it out of the box at Bud Light Hotel in New York City

The crowd loves Foo Fighters

Lucky Duck cheers on Foo Fighters and Zac Brown Band at The Bud Light Hotel in New York City.

Twitter extended me an amazing ticket to watch the Foo Fighters and Zac Brown Band kill it during Super Bowl Week. It was my second trip out to The Bud Light Hotel, after having just been able to see Aloe Blacc and Imagine Dragons last night, courtesy of Facebook. Imagine Dragons wasn’t in the house this time, they were hosting Saturday Night Live.

Hottest ticket in town prior to kickoff

Zac Brown Band impresses

After an awesome pre-funk at Ink48, where @Kimpton actually favorited my tweet (yay!), we had the time of our lives! And @NYCCountryMusic favorited my checkin tweet!

My friends rock

Shortly after walking in, Zac Brown Band covered Metallica’s Enter Sandman!

Zac Brown Band plays at The Bud Light Hotel in NYC

Foo Fighters freaking rock

I’ve been a huge Foo Fighters fan, since the 90’s when Learn To Fly came out. In fact, whenever I hear that song, I think of the infamous Adam. I told all of my friends that if I could pick one song to hear it would be that one, and when it came on, we all went crazy. In a good way.

Having a blast at Foo Fighters Bud Light Hotel

Foo Fighters blow it up at The Bud Light Hotel

They played everything, and this one of the best concerts I’ve ever seen.

Foo Fighters perform at The Bud Light Hotel Foo Fighters perform at The Bud Light Hotel in NYC

But the encore!

When Foo Fighters came back out to the stage and covered Tom Petty, I thought, cool… but I KNEW that Everlong would be in our future… and it was! It was the perfect way to end the show, and I was glad that I stayed out until 2:00 in the morning to see it.

Celebrities are in the house

Can you spot the two celebrities above us on the balcony?

Stars are in the crowd

It really is all fists

EVERYONE had a blast. Honestly, out of anywhere you can be in New York City prior to kickoff, The Bud Light Hotel is your best bet, IF you can get in.

Foo Fighters rock The Bud Light Hotel NYC

The carnage

Safety is always first, and Bud Light did a great job plugging Uber and cabs throughout the night, to follow up on their beverage generosity.

The carnage at The Bud Light Hotel

The Bud Light Hotel hosts an awesome concert

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Imagine Dragons and Aloe Blacc perform at The Bud Light Hotel in New York City

Lucky Duck visits the Bud Light Hotel in NYC

Lucky Duck celebrates Super Bowl XLVIII at The Bud Light Hotel.

Outside of The Big Game itself, The Bud Light Hotel is the hottest ticket in town. And I didn’t just get one ticket – I got two. Last night, Aloe Blacc, Walk The Moon, and Imagine Dragons cranked up the stage at Pier 88. Later today, I’ll be back at The Bud Light Hotel to celebrate Seattle vs. Denver and rock out to The Zac Brown Band and The Foo Fighters.

Imagine Dragons put on a killer show

And if you missed them last night, you’re in luck! Imagine Dragons will be appearing on Saturday Night Live tonight! They probably will not cover U2’s With Or Without You on Prime Time, but here it is from Lucky Duck’s vantage point.

Imagine Dragons Concert shots


Imagine Dragons perform at The Bud Light Hotel

Imagine Dragons perform at The Bud Light Hotel Imagine Dragons perform at The Bud Light Hotel


Imagine Dragons perform at The Bud Light Hotel

Drinks were flowing, but safety was first

In between acts, Bud Light raffled off vouchers for Uber, the car service and reminded everybody to be safe.

Bud Light Beverages at The Bud Light Hotel

Aloe Blacc performs

It was awesome to see a live performance of Wake Me Up – for the second time. Lucky Duck saw Avicii spin Wake Me Up at XS in Las Vegas this past September.

Thank you, Pandora

Pandora sponsored the concert and was in full force in between acts. Personally I loved the girl on the far right in the sparkly onesie.

Pandora hosts the Imagine Dragons concert at The Bud Light Hotel

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Super Bowl Boulevard at Times Square in New York City

Seattle Seahawks fans admire the Vince Lombardi trophy in Times Square NYC

Lucky Duck visits the Vince Lombardi Trophy on Super Bowl Boulevard.

Super Bowl XLVIII (48) kicks off in three days, but New York City is already buzzing with Seattle Seahawks/Denver Broncos excitement. Super Bowl Boulevard has shut Broadway down, from 34th Street to 47th, and today, through February 1st, you can join in the Times Square festivities.

Walk Super Bowl Boulevard

Visit the Vince Lombardi Trophy

Create a video with Snickers

Bobsledding in Times Square

Let’s go Seahawks!

Over the course of the week, I’ve been finding cool ways to celebrate my former home team. For example, I bought cupcakes with little football rings on top.

Super Bowl cupcakes

Seahawks and football rings

When I got out of the train the other night, I took a long walk to get a great shot of The Empire State Building, lit up in Seattle Seahawks blue and green.

Empire State Building lit up to celebrate Seattle Seahawks

Visit Super Bowl Boulevard in New York City

If you can make it down to Super Bowl Boulevard, you should.

Super Bowl Boulevard signage in Times Square

Katrina and I vogued on the green carpet.

Super Bowl Boulevard Step and Repeat

Shannon Truax at Super Bowl Boulevard

PBR Monster Energy Buck Off at Madison Square Garden in NYC

Lucky Duck attends Monster Buck Off at MSG

Lucky Duck sits dirt-side at Monster Energy Buck Off at Madison Square Garden in New York City.

Monster Energy Drinks invited me down to MSG as a VIP at one of the most exciting events in the City. If you’ve ever thought about checking out Professional Bull Riding, you should. I really enjoyed the experience and would love to attend again. No question. Professional Bull Riding is badass, and a lot of fun.

Monster Buck Off Pass

I was able to enjoy drinks and snacks in the Delta Sky Club Lounge, and I had the best vantage point in the house.

Open bar at Monster Buck Off Up close on on the dirt

Opening Ceremonies are no joke

There is no messing around when you have a 1,000 pound bull, 7 tons of dirt, and the best Professional Bull Riders in the world. The opening theatrics were awesome and did a great job setting us up for a night of bull riding.

Pistol Robinson is back on the bull

After surviving what the Professional Bull Riding association called “The Worst Wreck of 2012,” Pistol Robinson returned to Madison Square Garden this week to get back on the bull for the first time in two years. Here is his ride.

8 seconds can feel like a lifetime on a bull

As I watched the clock, I couldn’t believe how LONG it took for the clock to reach 8 seconds! 8 seconds feels like a lifetime when you’re watching someone get tossed around on a bull.

A new meaning for “Rodeo Clown”

One things that I was not expecting was our Rodeo Clown, master of ceremonies.

Rodeo Clown is our MC and funny

He was hilarious, and I had no idea that there would be so much crowd involvement and comedy in between rides. We rapped Ice Ice Baby, picked the best dressed fan, and watched him do every style of dance you can imagine. Extremely entertaining and a nice comic relief from the intensity of the bucking bulls.

NY Giants Tight End Bear Pascoe attends

He looked fantastic switching out his helmet for a cowboy hat…

Shannon Truax and Bear Pascoe NY Giants Tight End

… but it’s not just an outfit for Bear. His dream job after football is rodeo!

Mixed Martial Arts fighter Michael Chandler attends

He’s one of the Monster athletes, and he hung out with us after the Buck Off. For a world champion fighter…

… he sure is kind and fun to have a beer with.

Shannon Truax and Michael Chandler MMA fighter

The Monster Girls have a presence too, yay!

Guess which one is me! Just kidding. We all know I’m the Oompa-Loompa in all the clothes.

Shannon Truax and the Monster girls

More about my outfit

I wore my cowboy boots, cowgirl belt, and fringy sweater. Before leaving for the night, I captured a Fireside Chat about my outfit and my New Year’s Resolutions.

Rodeo outfit

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New York City sets up New Year’s Eve in Times Square

New York City sets up New Years Eve in Times Square

Lucky Duck visits the most iconic spot for New Year’s Eve.

Most of the world will be peering in on what’s going on in New York City’s Times Square on December 31st. And in preparation of the main event tomorrow night, things are starting to happen. As I was walking home from Cinderella The Musical last night (read my review here), I wanted to walk through Time Square and see everything firsthand.

The stage is set

Stopping by the Nivea stage, I wanted to share a few thoughts about 2014:

Shannon Truax in Times Square New Year's Eve at Times Square in NYC

Where I will be on New Year’s Eve

I’ll be where I was last year – The Gold Mansion on Long Island! Last year, I attended the party of the year, and this year, my golden invitation arrived again. #luckyme

To ring in 2013, I dressed up as a flapper and headed out to the Speakeasy, where I ate and drank things that I couldn’t imagine. I watched burlesque dancers, played roulette, danced, and shopped in the costume jewelry section (actually, you just got to take what you liked).

Shannon Truax on New Year's Eve 2013 Shannon Truax on New Year's Eve 2013 New Year's Eve

How I resolved my goals in 2013

I’m pleased with how I fulfilled my New Year’s resolutions in 2013, which were:

What I resolve for 2014

My six resolutions for 2014 look a bit different than what I set out to do this past year. I’m a different person than the gal who started 2013 back in January, and I’m committed to The Big Apple. I am excited to see how these goals play out over the next 12 months.

    1. Make big impact at work.
    2. See my family.
    3. Work out, and watch the indulgences.
    4. Involve myself in meaningful relationships.
    5. Do something “Wow” at least once per week.
    6. Do something I’ve never done before at least once per month.

I have no idea what posts will live on, and I’m fascinated to imagine what might be… Cheers!

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Cinderella The Musical on Broadway in New York City

Cinderella The Musical on Broadway

Lucky Duck enjoys Rogers & Hammerstein’s Cinderella, The Musical.

As I sunk into my red velvet seat at The Broadway Theater on 52nd/Broadway in New York City, I wondered how much of Cinderella The Musical would overlap with the Disney Bibbidi Bobbidi Boo classic. The woods on the stage welcomed me in, and I couldn’t wait for the orchestra pit to fill the theater with the first notes of the overture.

Cinderella The Musical on Broadway

I was at the edge of my seat the second I sat down. Here’s a quick look at some commentary walking in; I think it’s pretty clear that I was thrilled to be attending my first Broadway play as a New Yorker.

What it’s all about

You’re not going to hear, “Salagadoola mechicka boola bibbidi-bobbidi-boo” in this musical, and you won’t meet Gus the mouse. As soon as Ella started singing, “In my own little corner,” I lit up – this show is adapted from the 1965 Leslie Ann Warren classic where Alan Quartermaine, ahem, Stuart Damon, plays the Prince! My mom and godmother watched this movie as little girls, and I had the joy of watching it on VHS as a kid myself. I still knew the words to every song!

Why you should go

Good theater gives you a reason to buy a ticket; otherwise, just stay home, watch the movie, and save a ton of money. At one point, Joe turned to me and said, “What the hell is going on?!” I nearly fell out of my velvet chair. The show takes a twist, and you can’t quite put your finger on how it’s going to play out, even though we all know the ending. The cast was exceptional (the short stepsister steals the show!). The theatrics around turning the pumpkin into the coach and the rags to the gown were incredible. I smiled the whole time. And I was so glad that I didn’t have to see a grown man dressed up as a mouse. No thanks.

Cinderella The Musical at The Broadway Theater

Where to eat

Now THAT is the next big question. I’ve blogged about Da Marino before. In fact, I even filmed a Fireside Chat, featuring my spaghetti and meatballs, as well as the Sex in the City clip when Carrie and Mr. Big ate there in one episode.

Tonight, we went back! And this time, I ordered the lasagna – YUM. My server recognized me and welcomed me back; with the high turnover at this place, I was so flattered.

Da Marino NYC

Lasagna at Da Marino NYC

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