First Street Green Holiday Wrap-Up Recap

Posted on: December 16th, 2011 at 10:19 am by

It may have been the best way to avoid SantaCon this past Saturday.

First Street Green (FSG), the group that changed the course of the formerly rat-infested alleyway connecting First and East Houston Streets (making room for the BMW Guggenheim Lab), hosted a holiday party for the neighborhood. The park’s gates were open for the day, with visitors, neighbors and passersby enjoying holiday beverages and partaking in various activities.

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FSG volunteers (this reporter included) were getting the message out that they will continue to keep this community park alive, with the mission of organizing arts programming.

Modular tiles, filled with hand-written ideas for the park created in previous community brainstorming sessions, were on display. Posters illustrating the results of datamining of the ideas were hung nearby. Closer to the Houston Street side was a colorful work area for a wishing wall, where guests could create ribbons with messages of holiday or year-end “wishes,” which were then tied on the adjacent chain link fence.

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In the previous sessions, residents expressed the desire to see the arts strongly represented in the forms of both exhibits and arts and crafts events for all ages. Popular categories in the arts included fine art, music and performance, lectures, workshops and films. Each of these were represented by chalk circles on the ground. Neighbors and guests were invited to get their hands dirty – well, chalky – and fill in specifics within those circles.

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The group lucked out with the weather. It was a chilly day but sunny, and the engaged crowd kept warm with much-appreciated hot chocolate donated by Veselka Bowery and hot apple cider courtesy of Juicy Lucy.

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Real programming will start with the warmer weather, but we hear there may be a special snow event. Stay tuned, and practice your snow angels!

Writeup and photos by Lori Greenberg

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