High Line Blog

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Author: 
Jennette Mullaney
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We have exciting news to share with you. After completing an extensive search, it is our great pleasure to introduce Jenny Gersten, who will be joining Friends of the High Line as its Executive Director in January. Jenny will replace Robert Hammond, who earlier this year announced his plans to step down from the Executive Director position at the end of 2013. Joshua David will remain with Friends of the High Line as its President and will be working closely with Jenny in her role as Executive Director.

We are incredibly fortunate to have found an accomplished leader in Jenny, who has a proven track record of success in program development, non-profit management, and fundraising for arts and culture organizations. As the Artistic Director of the Williamstown Theatre Festival, where she has worked since 1996, Jenny helped create and oversee the organization’s long-range strategic plan and $7 million endowment fund. She also managed a vast professional development and training program for more than 200 apprentices, interns, and professional staff. Before the Williamstown Theatre Festival, Jenny served as the Associate Producer of The Public Theater in New York City, where she produced six Shakespeare in the Park productions.

Author: 
Adam Dooling
Photo by Friends of the High LineThe yellow flowers of the swamp sunflower (Helianthus angustifolius) are a beautiful sight on the High Line in autumn. Photo by Friends of the High Line

The High Line’s planting design is inspired by the self-seeded landscape that grew up between rail tracks after the trains stopped running in the 1980s. Today, the High Line includes more than 300 species of perennials, grasses, shrubs, and trees – each chosen for their hardiness, adaptability, diversity, and seasonal variation in color and texture. Some of the species that originally grew on the High Line’s rail bed are reflected in the park landscape today.

This week we share with you one of our gardeners’ current favorites.

Author: 
Amelia Krales
Photo by Oliver RichThis month, Tuesday evenings are best spent gazing at the stars on the High Line. Photo by Oliver Rich

Come observe the celestial bodies above the High Line. On Tuesday evenings through the end of the month, the Amateur Astronomers Association will set up their high-powered telescopes to provide visitors an opportunity to get an up-close-and-personal look at the stars and planets. Stargazing on the High Line is a free program, so take advantage of one of the final three opportunities of the season.

High Line Photographer Oliver Rich took this photo earlier in the season using a tripod and a long exposure to capture the movement of people while keeping the stationary objects tack-sharp. Thank you, Oliver, for this wonderful image!

For more about this program and our other upcoming programs for adults and kids alike, visit the High Line Events page.

Author: 
Jennette Mullaney
Photo by Liz LigonFreshkills Park Administrator Eloise Hirsh spoke eloquently about the former-landfill turned oasis. "Like the High Line, it is a park of the 21st century," she said of Freshkills. Photo by Liz Ligon

How do we transform a once-notorious landfill into a beautiful New York City park?

On Monday, September 23, we hosted a discussion on the metamorphosis of Staten Island's Fresh Kills Landfill – once the largest landfill in the world – into Freshkills Park, a 2,200-acre oasis. James Corner of James Corner Field Operations and Eloise Hirsh of the NYC Department of Parks & Recreation spoke about the incredible changes they've been making to this site since the landfill closed in 2001.

James Corner Field Operations, the lead on the High Line's design team, is also leading the design of Freshkills Park. Corner discussed the unique challenges he's faced on this project, as well as the park's many idiosyncrasies. "If Freshkills is to be a living, and dynamic, and changing, and growing landscape, in a sense it never has a finished state," he remarked.

As the administrator of Freshkills Park, Hirsh has also witnessed the former landfill's about-face, and spoke eloquently of the site's transformation. "It is the most elegant testimony to the strength of nature that you can possibly imagine," said Hirsh. She also underscored the park's commitment to sustainability, describing their use of animal husbandry and green building.

Watch our full-length video of the talk below. For more images of the landfill-turned-park, see our recent photo essay.

Author: 
Adam Dooling
Photo by Friends of the High LineBluebird smooth aster is a magnet for monarch butterflies and other pollinators. Photo by Friends of the High Line

The High Line’s planting design is inspired by the self-seeded landscape that grew up between rail tracks after the trains stopped running in the 1980s. Today, the High Line includes more than 300 species of perennials, grasses, shrubs, and trees – each chosen for their hardiness, adaptability, diversity, and seasonal variation in color and texture. Some of the species that originally grew on the High Line’s rail bed are reflected in the park landscape today.

This week we share with you one of our gardeners’ current favorites.

Author: 
Amelia Krales
Photo by Eric LaThe best seat in the house is looking out on 10th Avenue, on the High Line at West 17th Street. Photo by Eric La

Surprise, it still feels like summer!

Visitors have been flocking to the Sunken Overlook in the 10th Avenue Square to relax and soak in the sun while the weather remains nice. This last week has brought us unseasonably warm temperatures and clear skies, which will reportedly continue in the upcoming week, making it the perfect time for strolling and lounging on the High Line. Eric La captured this late-afternoon scene earlier in the season.

Bring a book, a friend, or snack from one of the High Line’s food vendors for the ultimate relaxing experience during your next visit to the park.

Learn more about how to plan your next visit.

Author: 
Kat Widing
Photo by Timothy Schenck Carol Bove’s Celeste (2013) peeks through the Queen Anne’s lace (Daucus carota) at the rail yards. Photo by Timothy Schenck

Carol Bove’s organic shapes and weathered metals seem to sprout from the natural landscape on the undeveloped section of the High Line at the Rail Yards like the green grasses, trees, and flowers surrounding them. For those that have seen Bove’s fantastic installation, Caterpillar, you may have wondered about the names and types of plants around you on your tour, and so have we! Luckily, Tom Smarr, our Director of Horticulture on the High Line, walked us through the rich variety of flora at the rail yards, giving us a crash course about the rich assortment of plants and trees occupying the landscape.

Author: 
Erika Harvey
EnlargePhoto of the High Line by Steven Severinghaus

In celebration of our new 18-month High Line Calendar, we’re exploring each month’s featured image to bring you more of the behind-the-scenes details.

October’s calendar image is a vibrant autumn landscape shot by High Line Photographer Steven Severinghaus. This image was taken during one of our seasonal photo walks, informal meet-ups Friends of the High Line leads with our volunteer photographers. On that early morning in October last year, a small group of us met up at the south end of the High Line at the top of the Gansevoort Stair and set out into the park with our cameras. The weather was brisk and fall foliage was in full-swing. Steven’s photo beautifully captures a short section of park between West 19th and West 20th Streets. In the foreground, the light purple blooms of Raydon’s Favorite asters contrast against the yellowing wispy strands of threadleaf bluestar and red-tinged Shennendoah switchgrass.

Steven is one of a small, dedicated group of photographer volunteers who lend their talents to the High Line, turning their lenses to a variety of subjects in the park. He has an impressive talent for discovering subtle details and textures that easily go unseen to most people. Browsing his Flickr Photostream is guaranteed to brighten your day. There you’ll find hummingbirds alighting delicate branches, poetically composed portraits of seasonal blooms, and a variety of the teeniest fauna you’ll ever find in New York City’s natural spaces.

We are endlessly impressed by and delighted with Steven’s work, and we’re sure you will be too. Join us after the jump to get to know him better.

Author: 
Ana Nicole Rodriguez
Photo by FHL Fany Gerson, owner of La Newyorkina, carefully selects jalapeños for her paletas. Photo by Friends of the High Line

If anyone knows how to source and pick fruit and vegetables, it’s Fany Gerson of La Newyorkina. Her famous paletas, inspired by her upbringing in Mexico and her culinary training in Europe, instilled in her a deep love for what the earth produces every season. We woke up early on a Wednesday morning to shadow Fany at the Union Square Greenmarket. Follow us after the jump to learn how Fany chooses her ingredients and why developing personal relationships with farmers is essential to her.

Author: 
Anonymous
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Amazon is transforming the High Line into the ultimate comfy living room so you can test-drive Kindle Paperwhite, their brand new e-reader.

Follow us after the jump for details.

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