Get Ready for The 2024 MAS NYC Jane’s Walk NYC ~ May 3-5

 

 

 

Jane’s Walk 2023. Image courtesy MASNYC Jane’s Walk

The annual Jane’s Walk NYC is back! Celebrating the life of Jane Jacobs in the city that never sleeps, this all volunteer-led event will offer in-person, guided group walks, virtual and self-guided tours with over 200 walks across all five boroughs. The festival is free and open to the public with your RSVP for each tour. Sign up early because many of the tours are capped at 30 attendees.

Here is the Tour Calendar for Jane’s Walk NYC 2024!

Below, a few excursions that caught our eye.

Jane’s Walk 2023. Image courtesy MASNYC Jane’s Walk

World’s Fair History in Flushing Meadow Park ~ Led by Ed Perlmutter

Celebrate the 60th Anniversary of the 1963-64 New York World’s Fair! Relive the history of the 1939-40 and 1964-65 World’s Fair that put Flushing Meadow Park on the map. Originally an ash dump, the controversial Robert Moses transformed this space in to a useable park and led the effort to bring about both of these famous events. Walk through the park and discuss the fairs and view structures that still exist from both of them. This is a two-hour walk.

Wild Woman’s Walk On The West Side ~ Led by Nancy Funke and Renata Renner

On this tour, we will view Central Park West Buildings, explore many sites within Central Park: Great Lawn, Delacorte, Shakespeare Garden and Bethesda Fountain. Remember to wear comfortable shoes!

Remembering Little Syria: The First Arab Americans ~ Led by Asad Dandia, Founder/New York Narratives

Once known as the “Syrian Quarter” in the late-19th century, this area became the Mother Colony from which the Arab American diaspora sprung. It was here that Kawkab America, the first Arabic language newspaper in the US, was printed in 1892. It was here that the linotype machine first began to use Arabic characters, revolutionizing Arabic language journalism all over the world. And it was here where Kahlil Gibran and Ameen Rihani founded the Pen League, a collective of prominent Arab writers and intellectuals.

Navigate & Advocate: How to use 311 to make your Neighborhood Better! ~ Led by Laura Sewell, Director, East Village Community Coalition

NYC 311 service requests are the key to reporting conditions and accessing services provided by the City of New York. From filling potholes to planting empty tree beds, fixing broken street lights or stopping illegal construction, the city’s response depends on your 311 requests.

Plaque commemorating Tin Pan Alley. Image via Wikipedia

Tin Pan Alley: Birthplace of American Popular Music ~ Led by Miriam German and George Calderaro, Tin Pan Alley American Popular Music Project

Tin Pan Alley is the cradle of the music industry in the United States. Here, American popular music as we know it was first created and promoted. This one block of 28th Street offers a glimpse into what has become a worldwide cultural force – pop music – at its specific place of creation. As an enclave of 19th-century structures, it is also largely intact as architecture. Author and guide Miriam Berman will tell the story of Tin Pan Alley sheet music publishers, songwriters and performers who worked on 28th Street between Broadway and 6th Avenue to create what would become “The Great American Songbook.”

Radical History of The Village ~ Led by Lucy Piccochi, Social Justice Tours

This will be an in-person walk that visits some historic buildings and places in the East/West village where radical activists and artists of all stripes once gathered. We will go to the sites of former saloons where Emma Goldman, Walt Whitman, Dorothy Day, and their many friends frequented, as well as the sites of the Yippie Cafe, the African Grove Theater and Eve Adams Tearoom, while discussing the long history of the Village as a hotbed for the political and cultural avant-garde. The walk will be about a mile long, so wear comfortable shoes and bring water.

Brooklyn Heights ~ America’s First Suburb ~ Led by Ellen Simon

Explore NYC’s first Landmark District – Brooklyn Heights was called one of the 10 most beautiful neighborhoods. See homes and taverns dating from the 1790’s. Learn the history and walk the tree lined “Fruit” streets. See Plymouth Church, a stop on the Underground Railroad, the Capote House, see gorgeous views from Colombia Heights, sand where George Washington had his headquarters during the Battle of Long Island. And more.

Revisiting the Politics of the 125th Street Zoning ~ Led by Dr. Gregory Baggett (A Virtual Event)

This virtual tour looks back on the controversial application to rezone 125th Street that triggered heated public hearings and a symbolic “human chain” that stretched from the Harlem River to the Hudson River. First, we screen the short documentary Rezoning Harlem, where ordinary citizens challenge decision-makers in the city government. The application was eventually approved under the leadership of then City Councilmember Inez E. Dickens who saw in the rezoning an opportunity to set strict height limits on future development, negotiate a community benefits package that included capital funding for three famed institutions, hundreds of deep affordable housing units, additional commercial units, a hotel, all developed with workforce construction as well as the creation of city’s first entertainment and arts special purpose district.

Jane’s Walk 2023. Image courtesy MASNYC Jane’s Walk

Harlem Village ~ Led by Kathy Benson, Landmark East Harlem

Join members of Landmark East Harlem in a visit to the site of Nieuw Haarlem, established when New York was New Amsterdam and centered around present-day 121st Street between Lexington and Third Avenues. We will see the landmarked Harlem Courthouse, Elmendorf Reformed Church, which traces its history back to the first church in Harlem, and the charming group of seven row houses called Sylvan Court. Before and after the village center, we will look at the Richard Webber Harlem Packing House, also a landmark, Harlem Art Park, surviving examples of Third Avenue’s commercial corridor in the late 19th century, and Taino Towers, a residential development that marked the transition between the civic optimism of the 1960s and the urban collapse of the 1970s. A virtual companion guide to the tour will be available at www.landmarkeastharlem.org.

Jane’s Walk Bike Ride on theHutchinson River Greenway ~ Led by Kevin Dalola and Erik Gonzalez, Administrator, Friends of The Hutchinson River Greenway

Ride starts on North end of public Greenway and will travel South along the Hutchinson River Greenway to Westchester Ave. About 75 minutes, 3 miles. Stopping at 3 new crossings, 2 new nearly complete tree and brush replantings from construction, two areas pedestrian areas that need gardening and better highlighting. Finishing with pizza in a newly taken over lot of land turned garden less than 1 year ago.

NYC Subway Art Tour ~ Led by Amanda Li

Skip the museum snooze fest, hop on the express train to artistic adventure! Discover NYC’s hidden art scene, a vibrant underground gallery unlike any other. No art expertise needed, just a curious mind and comfy shoes! You won’t want to miss the opportunity to unleash your inner art detective, hunt down mosaics, murals, and installations in iconic stations. We will see diverse stories unfold through art, revealing the city’s history and spirit.

East Harlem Walking Tour with Christopher Bell on May 6th

East Harlem Walking Tour ~ Led by Christopher Bell, East Harlem Historian

East Harlem Historian Christopher Bell will give tour goers a tour of the East Harlem Neighborhood. Chris was thrilled to participate in Jane’s Walk last year. Participants will see historical sites of the neighborhood’s cultural and important places in East Harlem. Several sites along the famed Museum Mile and Chris will regale tour goers will important facts along with historical photographs from his collection.

Ladies Mile ~ Led by Jeremy Willinger

Explore Ladies Mile and why this stretch of Manhattan became known as the leading district of commerce and popular society. Spotlighting unique buildings and retailers between Union and Madison Squares, experience a tour replete with stores and stories, while discovering how Ladies Mile also influenced women’s suffrage, popular music, and shaped more than just the latest fashion trends.

Jane’s Walk 2023. Image courtesy MASNYC Jane’s Walk

NYC Public Bathroom Walking Tour ~ Led by Julie Chou, Principal, Purpose by Design Architects

With the recent public health crisis, the shift to remote work and vacant storefronts, and the growth of delivery workers in NYC, the need for public bathrooms is more urgent than ever. Join us to delve into the history of public bathrooms in our city, understand the current system, and explore the future of public bathrooms in NYC. We’ll discuss recent bills introduced to provide an additional 3,000 public bathrooms for our city and look into different public bathroom typologies. We will start off at the David Rubenstein Atrium at 61 West 62nd Street where a public bathroom is located in the privately owned public space (POPS). We will next visit a parks public bathroom at Central Park’s Merchant’s Gate and end at a subway public bathroom at the N,Q,R, W West 57th Street Station.

Jane’s Walk 2023. Image courtesy MASNYC Jane’s Walk

 

Walking the Forgotten History of Jewish Harlem ~ Led by Barry Judelman, Founder, New York Jewish Tours

Explore Jewish sites in the remarkable urban settlement of Harlem, which by 1900 was a major center of Jewish life and the 3rd largest Jewish community in the world, after the LES and Warsaw. Discover legendary Jewish landmarks and people of this forgotten time: the magnificent Temple Israel by noted Jewish architect, Arnold Brunner; the “Commandment Keepers” – Harlem’s Ethiopian Hebrew Synagogue; the trendsetting Institutional Synagogue, (the “shul with the pool”); Ohab Zedek, synagogue of the world famous cantor Yossele Rosenblatt (king of cantors); songwriter extraordinaire Richard Rodgers; actress Gertrude Berg (AKA Molly Goldberg), and Lena Himmelstein Bryant – the founder of the successful clothing enterprise “Lane Bryant”.

5-Boro Comic Book Store Tour ~ Led by Raph Schwelzer, Tour Guy(D)

This will be a walk to the city’s most historic and culturally important comic books and collectibles stores. There are over 35 of these types of businesses but they are always in a precarious state due to the lack of commercial rent protections for brick-and-mortar stores. The oldest LCS (Local Comic Store) is 45 years old, with a half dozen others in business over 20 years. We will do the first tour in May, going to 3-4 stores, and hopefully bring the participants to all of them by September/October at this once-a-month event. There are so many family-run hidden gems that sell baseball cards, physical media (VHS, Vinyl, Laser Disc) and other items that preserve cultural history (even if it’s “Pop Culture”, it’s still a piece of history.

Jane’s Rock! ~ Led by Tom Devaney, Senior Director Land Use and Planning/Municipal Art Society and Jack Rabid

The world-famous Jane’s Rock returns for a seventh year! Please join MAS’ Tom Devaney and rock zine The Big Takeover’s editor-in-chief Jack Rabid on this entertaining exploration of the Lower East Side’s rock and punk rock past. The walk visits the sites of some of New York’s most iconic and historic music venues including Max’s Kansas City, The Fillmore East, The Palladium, The Electric Circus, and CBGBs. Tom and Jack provide lively descriptions covering the history of the buildings—many started out as vaudeville theaters and social clubs for new immigrants—to when they were at the forefront during their music heyday.

At the historic La Marqueta in El Barrio. Jane’s Walk 2023. Image courtesy MASNYC Jane’s Walk

Garment District NYC Walking Tour ~ Led by Michael Kaback, Licensed NYC Tour Guide

The Garment District Business Improvement District (BID) will once again offer a Jane’s Walk covering the Fashion District, from its beginnings in the sweatshops of the Lower East Side to its evolution and survival in the modern world of electronics.

Discovering Chinatown: A Herbalist’s Guide to Cultural Treasurers ~ Led by Yong Zhang

Embark on an immersive stroll through historic Chinatown, where I’ll lead you on a journey through its landmarks and the fascinating world of Chinese herbalism. As we wander, I’ll share insights into the medicinal properties of Chinese health foods and answer any questions you have. Our itinerary includes stops at iconic sites like the Museum of Chinese in America and visits to New Kam Man Supermarket and Po Wing Hong Food Market, where you’ll discover a treasure trove of traditional herbs and ingredients.

As your guide, I bring a wealth of knowledge and passion to this experience. Having served on the staff of a Chinese herbal medicine company, also used to be a journalist, and pursued ongoing education in Chinese herbal history, I am eager to share insights and anecdotes with fellow herbal enthusiasts.

Sailors’ Snug Harbor Historical Tour ~ Led by Nancy Kipari, Educator

See the past and the future at Snug Harbor! Learn the history of our 19th century campus and the architecture that put Snug Harbor on the map of irreplaceable architectural collections, featuring six of the first 40 New York City landmarks. Explore Snug Harbor’s master plan for the future and share your vision for the future of Snug Harbor. Wear comfortable walking shoes and dress for the weather.

Past, Present and Future of Elizabeth Street Garden ~ Led by Brandon Pachuca and Eveline Schneider

Elizabeth Street Garden is a cherished community garden located in Little Italy. The garden has evolved from a vacant lot, to a one-of-a-kind sculpture garden hosting community wellness events, poetry, music, movie nights, and welcomes all New Yorkers to pause and enjoy nature.

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