First Annual ‘Lower East Side History Month’ Celebration to Commence This May
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Photo: Eva Silverman
It’s been a long time coming. With a neighborhood so rich in history and culture, it seems only fitting that an entire month be dedicated to exploring and celebrating the Lower East Side of yesteryear. And that’s just what’s gonna happen. Dog-ear those calendars; May is ‘Lower East Side History Month,’ and promises plenty of public events, exhibits, tours, and learning opportunities all over Lower East Side proper (inclusive of East Village, Chinatown, Little Italy, and Alphabet City).
Over thirty local organizations are joining forces to make it happen, with FABNYC at the helm. Also, word on the street is that the students of PS 126/Manhattan Academy of Technology will also be involved, showcasing what they’ve learned this semester.
Here’s a sampler of what to look forward to:
- ‘THE NEWS,’ an outdoors music-theater work performed by teens from Downtown Art at multiple sites in the LES, based on a dozen neighborhood newspaper articles from 1914.
- Presentations by both Good Ole Lower East Side (GOLES) and the Museum of Reclaimed Urban Space on the history of activism in the Lower East Side.
- Walking tours by the Museum of Chinese in the Americas, Lower East Side History Project, Lower East Side Jewish Conservancy, and The Lower East Side Tenement Museum.
- FABLES, a mural series produced by Fourth Arts Block, exploring the Lower East Side’s living cultural heritage, rich history, and current issues in storytelling through public art.
- Conni’s Avant Garde Restaurant’s Illyria/Loisaida, a modern language take on Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, presented as theatrical and historical walking tour of the LES, led by characters from the play and featuring visits to local establishments and iconic locations.
- Weekly Television and Livestream broadcasts of 28-minute biographies from the best of the The Lower East Side Biography Project.
- Henry Street Street Settlement’s block party to celebrate their founder, Lillian Wald’s 147th birthday with food, a birthday cake contest, DJ, Zumba, and tours of Henry Street’s historic headquarters.
A full calendar of events and volunteering info will be made available at LES History Month.