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Tale of Four Schools
City on a Grid book talk
Native American walking tour
Plaque Unveiling: Chaim Gross home and studio
The Puppets of the Village Parade: Ralph Lee studio tour
Village Macabre walking tour

Please note that space is often limited. Reservations are not confirmed until you receive a response from GVSHP regarding your reservation.

If space becomes an issue, all reservations will be honored up until the start of the program, at which point your seat may be given away to those on the wait list.   

Tale of Four Schools

Thursday, September 22, 6:30 – 8:00 p.m.
The Loisaida Inc. Center
710 E 9th Street, at Avenue C

Architect CBJ Snyder was a prolific designer of New York public school buildings, completing more than 350 schools in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. A graduate of Cooper Union, Snyder had big ideas about design, too - he believed that public school buildings should be civic monuments to a better, brighter future. Snyder’s innovative buildings included progressive solutions for light, air, fireproofing, and classroom size. How can we better care for our community resources facilitate adaptive reuse, and what can we still learn from Snyder’s century-old philosophies? Professor Jean Arrington, who has researched Snyder’s work and legacy in New York, will share her insights and Simeon Bankoff, Executive Director of the Historic Districts Council, will moderate a discussion with stakeholders of four Snyder projects: PS 31, a demolished Bronx landmark; two former Harlem schools (PS 106 at 215 East 99th and PS 186 at 521 West 145th) aiming to serve as community anchors; and PS 64, an East 9th Street building with an uncertain future. Organized with the Loisaida Inc. Center, and co-sponsored by the Lower East Side Preservation Initiative, East Village Community Coalition, and Historic Districts Council.

Free. Reservations required - click here to attend.
[This event is wheelchair accessible.]

City on a Grid
Book talk

Tuesday, September 27, 6:30 – 8:00 p.m.
Westbeth Community Room
155 Bank Street, between West Street and Washington Street

Love it or hate it, nothing says New York like the Manhattan street grid. Created in 1811 by a three-man commission, the grid brought order to a city just under two hundred years old. Until then, New York was an overgrown town at the southern tip of Manhattan, a notorious jumble of streets laid at the whim of landowners. To bring order to the chaos—and good real estate to market—the street planning commission created an ordered, geometric grid for the rest of the island. It has been called “a disaster” of urban planning and “the most courageous act of prediction in Western civilization.” But what are the true origins of the grid? Join author Gerard Koeppel as he explores the history of Manhattan’s imposing grid and the story of its creators. You’ll learn how the commissioners arrived at their plan, how irregular downtown layouts factored in, and some specific roles that Greenwich Village played in the creation and adoption of the monumental street plan. Were the commissioners prescient geniuses, or uninspired bureaucrats? You decide - but it is undeniable that their work has determined the way millions of people move through New York each day.

Free. Reservations required - click here to attend.
[This event is wheelchair accessible.]

Native American History walking tour:
From the West to East Village

Saturday, October 1, 11:00 a.m. – 1:30 p.m.

You might assume that New York’s streets are as old as Dutch settlement, but many of the thoroughfares we use today actually began long before that. Early settlers adopted many pathways that were originally carved by truly native New Yorkers, and these routes were incorporated into the more formal city plan as development spread across the island. On this extended tour, Evan Pritchard, author of Native New Yorkers: The Legacy of the Algonquin People of New York, will take you on a journey through the history of New York’s streets from west to east. Starting in Greenwich Village, you’ll traverse the island before ending at the St. Mark’s in-the-Bowery graveyard where Peter Stuyvesant is interred. Along the way, you’ll see the streets and plazas through Native American eyes and explore how New York’s indigenous history influences our modern streetscapes and public spaces. Drawing upon archaeology, linguistics, and oral and written histories, this walk will link the legacy of the Lenape with Abraham Lincoln, modern luxury, and more. Co-sponsored by Neighborhood Preservation Center and Village Alliance.

Free. Reservations required - click here to attend.
[This event is not wheelchair accessible.]

Plaque Unveiling: Chaim Gross home and studio

Thursday, October 6, 6:00 – 7:00 p.m.
The Renee & Chaim Gross Foundation
526 LaGuardia Place, at Bleecker Street

Born to a Jewish family in the Carpathian Mountains, sculptor and educator Chaim Gross’s first brush with art came while growing up watching local peasants whittle wood figures.  After studying art in Budapest, Gross came to New York City in 1921 and continued his studies at the Educational Alliance, where he later taught. Working predominantly in wood, stone, and eventually bronze, his work conveyed a sense of joy, exuberance, and celebration of movement and form. In 1963, Gross and his family moved to a historic home at 526 LaGuardia Place, where the artist worked and lived until his death in 1991. Since 1974, The Renee and Chaim Gross Foundation has operated out of the building, acquiring, displaying, researching and educating about art. Today the foundation holds an impressive collection of over 10,000 items (including Gross’s extensive personal collection) and the building's third floor exhibits the Gross's living space, exactly as it was when the apartment was in use. Join GVSHP and Two Boots to mark this important Village site with the unveiling of a plaque commemorating the work of Chaim Gross and the Renee and Chaim Gross Foundation. Speakers will explore the important legacy of the studio and the Gross family. Following the unveiling, enjoy a reception inside the foundation’s beautiful home.

Free. Reservations required - click here to attend.
[This event is wheelchair accessible.]

The Puppets of the Village Parade:
a studio tour with Halloween Parade founder Ralph Lee

Wednesday, October 19
Tours at 6:30 and 8:00 p.m.

Westbeth Arts Center
55 Bethune Street

In 1974, Ralph Lee, in conjunction with the Theater for the New City, organized the first Greenwich Village Halloween Parade, which began in the courtyard of the Westbeth Artists Community before snaking through the neighborhood to Washington Square Park. During Lee’s tenure the parade grew from a small community event featuring his intriguing masks and giant puppets into one of New York City's major festivals, attracting over 250,000 people and media attention from around the world.  For his work on the parade, Lee received a 1975 Village Voice OBIE Award and 1985 Citation from the Municipal Arts Society, and in 1993 he was inducted into the CityLore People's Hall of Fame. Enjoy exclusive access into Lee’s Westbeth home and studio, where many of his puppets from the Village parade and other outdoor spectacles adorn the space. Talk with Lee about the history of the parade, the Greenwich Village arts scene, and his artistic vision that created a downtown Halloween institution.

Free. This event is for members only, at the $100 level or above.

Reservations required.
Tours are approximately one hour in length. Reserve by contacting or 212-475-9585 x35.
[This event is wheelchair accessible.]

Village Macabre
walking tour

Sunday, October 30, 11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.

Celebrate the Halloween season with some of the most mysterious and macabre stories in New York history — murders, hangings, explosions, famous missing persons, and specters all haunt the historic streets of Greenwich Village. Expert tour guide Joyce Gold will guide you through the autumnal scenery as you explore tales of the Village’s early 19thcentury Jewish graveyard, Newgate prison, Edgar Allan Poe’s home and inspiration for The Raven, the hangman’s house, America’s most famous missing person, and more.

Free. Reservations required. Meeting location will be provided after registration.
[This event is not wheelchair accessible.]

These programs are made possible in part by the generous support of: The New York City Department of Cultural Affairs; New York State Council on the Arts; City Councilmembers Rosie Mendez, Corey Johnson, and Margaret Chin; and GVSHP members.

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