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Friends of the High Line Newsletter

July 23, 2009

Third-Most Emailed NYT Article and More Press

Photo by Nicole Bengevino for the New York Times

The High Line has gotten more great press in the past couple of weeks, including yesterday's New York Times piece, which appeared at the top of the Times homepage in the morning, and is still on the "most emailed" list. Here are some of our favorites:

For High Line Visitors, Park Is a Railway Out of Manhattan   The New York Times New York Section

Manhattan's Elevated Park   Financial Times

Elevated Fashion   The New York Times Sunday Styles "On the Street": Column and Audio Slideshow
(Don't miss Bill Cunningham's wonderful audio commentary!)


Featured Summer Programs

Participants in last Saturday's High Line Hunt, the first in our Family Program series.

Our summer programs got off to a great start last weekend with our first family program, High Line Hunt, on Saturday, and the first in a series of weekly walking tours on Sunday. Don't miss our next featured family program this Saturday:

Workshop and Parade with Bash the Trash Environmental Arts
Join us this Saturday as Bash the Trash Environmental Arts, a group of educators, artists and performers, lead a workshop to make recycled instruments and play them in a High Line parade! The program will be conducted in English and Spanish. Bash the Trash will start with a short performance with their own instruments, followed by a session in which kids will construct their own drums, horns and other instruments using cardboard tubes, cereal boxes, soup containers, and other recyclables. Then Bash the Trash will lead kids on a lively musical parade around the High Line, showing off and playing their new instruments.

Saturday, July 25
11:00 AM - 12:30 PM
Meet on the High Line's 10th Avenue Square at 17th Street

RSVP is recommended but not required. Walk-ins will be admitted until the program is full.

Walking Tours
Walk the High Line with an expert!
Our small group walking tours are a great introduction to the park, as well as an opportunity to hear directly from the High Line's staff and designers about its history, design, gardens, and other areas of interest. Tours are every Sunday at 2:00. They are one hour long and cost $5 for Members and $10 for Non-Members. Become a Member.

July 26: Matthew Johnson, Senior Associate, Diller Scofidio + Renfro

August 2: Katie Lorah, Friends of the High Line

August 9: Matt Postal, Architectural Historian

August 16: Lisa Switkin, Associate Principal, James Corner Field Operations

August 23: Horticulture Staff, Friends of the High Line

August 30: Peter Mullan, Director of Planning, and Patrick Hazari, Design & Planning Fellow

September 13: Matthew Johnson, Senior Associate, Diller Scofidio + Renfro

September 20: Friends of the High Line Horticulture Staff

September 27: Jeff Hafner, Friends of the High Line

To see our full calendar of events, please visit our events page.

Friends of the High Line programming and community outreach is made possible with support from the Lily Auchincloss Foundation, Johnson Family Foundation, and the New York City Department of Youth and Community Development.

Friends of the High Line’s publications, program materials, and Web content is made possible with public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts, a state agency.


Reminder: Public Meetings About Proposed High Line Improvement District

As we announced a couple of weeks ago, Friends of the High Line is working with a group of community leaders, property owners, business owners, and residents to explore the creation of a special assessment district to cover $1 million of the annual $3.5 million- $4.5 million it will cost to maintain the High Line.

The proposed Improvement District will be created through a public process which is just beginning, and will include approval by the City Planning Commission, the Manhattan Borough President, and the City Council. A map of the proposed district [PDF] can be downloaded, and more information is available on our Web site. Additionally, The Villager ran a thorough article about the proposed District last week.

We will be seeking public input at two upcoming meetings. The meetings are open to everyone, but will be geared towards business owners, property owners, and tenants within the proposed district.

Tuesday, July 28
6:30 PM to 8:00 PM
9th Floor Penthouse, 511 West 25th Street

Thursday, July 30
9:00 AM to 10:30 AM
9th Floor Penthouse, 511 West 25th Street

Please RSVP for either of these meetings by leaving a message on our District Line at (646) 502-7863, or by contacting district@thehighline.org.


Target High Line Street Festival Photos and Thanks

The Festival took over Gansevoort Street for the day. Photo by Lou Rocca.

A big thanks to the thousands of people who came to the Target High Line Street Festival on July 12! Our official pubic celebration of the High Line's opening was a huge success, thanks to you. Here are some of our favorite photos from the day.

Limbo with the Hungry March Band, one of our awesome performers. Photo by Lou Rocca.

All in all, we estimate that more than 30,000 people joined us at the Street Festival and up on the High Line that day. We'd like to give a special thanks to Target, the Parks Department and other City partners, and all of our fabulous Festival organizers, performers, artists and partners for making this one-of-a-kind event possible.

Caterers from Bite serve lemonade at the World's Largest Lemonade Stand. Photo by Lou Rocca.

One of the Festival's biggest hits was the World's Largest Lemonade Stand, with more than 1,500 gallons of lemonade served from a classic New York City water tank. Thanks to Bite Catering and our new friends at Rosenwach Tank Co. for making this possible. Our submission to the Guinness Book is pending.

Michael Arenella and his Dreamland Orchestra play beneath a Jason Hackenwerth sculpture. Photo by Lou Rocca.

The Festival was musical and colorful, with bright inflatable art — including balloon art and costumes by artist Jason Hackenwerth and the 9th Avenue debut of Floater, an inflatable sculpture by Jeff Ladouceur. Roof-top, street-level, and elevated performances were given throughout the day by the Hungry March Band, Zona Del Barrio, Michael Aranella and his Dreamland Orchestra, Coolooloosh, and others.

Cooling off in the Target mister. Photo by Lou Rocca.

Target made the day memorable with "Hi From the High Line!" postcard photo booths, giving children and adults the opportunity to mail postcards of themselves taken in front of High Line and Festival backdrops. The hot weather made the Target mister a refreshing and welcome way to cool off.

Festival guests enjoy watermelon and crafts. Photo by Lou Rocca.

Children enjoyed creating a recycled tree sculpture, having their ankles, legs, knees, and faces painted with the Children's Museum of the Arts, meeting the West Side Cowboy and his horse, silk screening t-shirts with designs by Michael De Feo, a reading of Peter Brown's High Line-inspired children's book "The Curious Garden," impromptu performances by balloon artist Todd Neufeld, and more.

The Council on the Environment of New York City provided waste reduction and recycling support that helped us make the Target High Line Street Festival one of the "greenest" street events that New York City has seen:

• Lemonade was served in compostable cups, thanks to Target
• In all, only four bags of trash were collected at the Festival, while 15 bags of recyclables, and dozens of bags of compostable food scraps and materials were collected
• Power for the event was provided by biodiesel generators

Friends of the High Line Co-Founders Joshua David and Robert Hammond with Borough President Scott Stringer, and City Council Speaker Christine Quinn. Photo by Lou Rocca.

Thanks to Peter Brown for creating the Festival's wonderful illustration and to Little, Brown and Company for their support. Special thanks to The Usual Suspects for their incredible work producing a wonderful, memorable Festival on a beautiful day in the High Line neighborhood.

Based on art from THE CURIOUS GARDEN, © 2009 Peter Brown


Thanks to Our Elected Officials

It has been an amazing summer so far. We've seen the opening of Section 1 of the High Line, acclaim from critics and visitors alike, fun and diverse public programs and celebrations, planning work on Section 2, and advocacy for the preservation of the West Side Rail Yards.

None of this would be possible without the tireless leadership of our elected officials. We'd like to thank the following elected leaders for all the support they've given, and continue to give, to help make the High Line a well-loved place for New Yorkers and visitors alike.

City Council Speaker Christine C. Quinn: This year, Speaker Quinn and the City Council continued their long history of support for the High Line's community-building efforts with a commitment of $90,000 for Fiscal Year 2010. This essential funding will go toward Friends of the High Line's school, community outreach, and free and low-cost public programs. This commitment builds on a history of support that began in 2001, when the Council first signed on in support of the High Line's preservation when the structure was under imminent threat of demolition.

Manhattan Borough President Scott M. Stringer: The Borough President has been a strong supporter since coming to office in 2006. His recent capital commitments for Fiscal Years 2009 and 2010 total $1 million. This crucial funding will help make possible the completion of construction on Section 2.

Congressman Jerrold L. Nadler: Congressman Nadler's support for the High Line's preservation predates Friends of the High Line itself — the Congressman helped save the Rail Yards section from demolition in the 1980s. Since then, he and his staff have consistantly advocated for legislation and funding for the High Line's preservation and transformation. He spearheaded the effort to secure $18 million in federal funding. Most recently, he helped secure more than $200,000 as part of the 2009 Federal Omnibus Appropriations Bill.

State Senator Thomas K. Duane: Senator Duane recently announced a 2009 New York State Legislative Grant of $50,000, which will go to support the hiring of seasonal gardeners and other Maintenance & Operations staff in our essential first year. The grant will also support Friends of the High Line's community outreach efforts in local public housing developments and other local institutions to ensure that all members of our community are aware of employment opportunities at Friends of the High Line.

We also extend our deepest thanks to Senator Charles E. Schumer, who has long been a steadfast supporter of the High Line.


Jobs at the High Line: Seeking Office Assistant

Friends of the High Line is currently seeking a full-time Office Assistant. The Office Assistant is responsible for providing general administrative support to the entire Friends of the High Line office as well as specific support to one of the two Co-Founders on special projects including fundraising, design, and presentations.

Please see the job description for details on how to apply.



Become a Member of Friends of the High Line

Become a member today. Our members provide critical operating support to ensure that the High Line lives up to the high standards we all hold for this innovative new park. Support from our members allows us to hire gardeners to keep the park’s flowers and trees in peak condition, and maintenance crews to ensure the High Line is safe for its visitors.

Click to Join

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